Friday, December 17, 2010

Spinach, Broccoli and Cheddar Quiche

4 oz. spinach, steamed and finely chopped (GBFood)
1 head of broccoli, chopped (GBFood)
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1 Tablespoon butter
1 teaspoon sherry
1/2 teaspoon salt, divided
1 cup cheddar, shredded (I use Vermont Cabot Extra Sharp)
4 eggs
2 cups 1/2 & 1/2
1/8 teaspoon pepper
pinch of nutmeg

For Crust: (Will need to be refrigerated 30 minutes or up to overnight.)
1 1/4 cups flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 Tablespoons cold butter, sliced
2 Tablespoons vegetable shortening
3-5 Tablespoons of ice water

1. To make crust, in a large bowl combine flour, salt, butter and shortening. With a pastry blender, mix ingredients until it resembles coarse crumbs.

2. With a fork stir mixture while adding 1 tablespoon of ice water at a time, until dough is just moist enough to hold together.

3. Shape dough into a disk and wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to overnight. If chilling overnight, be sure let dough stand for 30 minutes at room temperature before rolling.

4. Meanwhile fill large pot with 1/2 inch of water, bring to boil over high heat. Add spinach to pot and steam, covered for 3 minutes. Remove from heat and rinse immediately with cold water. Wring out as much moisture as possible from the spinach and chop.

5. In a large pan melt butter over medium-high heat. Add shallot and cook stirring for 1 minute. Add broccoli and sherry stirring for 3 minutes. Add spinach and 1/4 teaspoon salt cooking for 1 more minute. Remove from heat and transfer mixture to a bowl and set aside.

6. On a lightly floured surface, with a floured rolling pin, slowly roll out a 12-inch round. Place into a 9-inch pie plate leaving enough overhang to fold over edges. Place in the freezer for 10 minutes and turn the oven to 425 degrees F.

7. Crack eggs into a medium-size bowl. With a fork gently scramble them. Add 1/2 & 1/2, other 1/4 teaspoon of salt, pepper and nutmeg. Set aside.

8. Place foil in crust and fill with pie weights or dry beans and bake for 10 minutes. Remove foil with weights and bake until golden, about 10 minutes longer. Take crust out of the oven and put on a wire rack to cool.

9. Turn oven control to 350 degrees.

10. Layer a thin amount of shredded cheddar on the bottom of quiche crust, then add spinach/broccoli mixture, spreading evenly. Layer the rest of the cheddar and then slowly pour the egg mixture over that. Fill crust without overflowing.

11. Place quiche in oven and bake for 55-60 minutes, or until knife comes out clean when inserted into the center. Let cool on a wire rack for 15 minutes before serving.

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Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Fruit Compote

4 tangerines (GBFood)
1 lemon, zest & juice (GBFood)
2 cups of water
1 cup of sugar
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
1 cinnamon stick
2 fugi apples, with skin, thinly sliced (GBFood)
1 d'anjou pear, with skin, thinly sliced (GBFood)
2 grapefruit (GBFood)

1. Take one of the tangerines and cut peel off in a corkscrew fashion about an inch wide. Save the inside of this tangerine for step 5.

2. In a 2-quart saucepan, bring water, sugar, brown sugar, tangerine peel, lemon juice & zest, to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove lid and scrape bits of lemon zest back into mixture, and let simmer for 5 more minutes.

3. Slice apples and pear, spreading them in a 5-quart dutch oven (or large pot). When step 2 is finished pour the mixture over the apple and pear, and let sit over no heat for 30 minutes.

4. Meanwhile cut both ends from remaining 3 tangerines. Cut off the rinds and all of the pith from each tangerine by slicing from top to bottom, following the contour of the fruit. Repeat for the grapefruit.

5. With a large bowl underneath, slice the tangerines cutting between the membrane, and let each piece with any juice fall into the bowl. When finished slicing, squeeze the remaining juice from the membranes into the bowl. Repeat for grapefruit. If the pieces between the membranes of the grapefruit are really large, just cut two slices from them.

6. Combine all ingredients in the large bowl, cover and refrigerate overnight. Remember to remove tangerine peel and cinnamon stick before serving. This dish is a fantastic addition to any holiday table. Make the night before and enjoy at breakfast!

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Fingerling Potato Gnocchi in Mushroom Cream Sauce

Ingredients for Gnocchi:

¾ lb. Fingerling potatoes (GBFood)

½ teaspoon salt

¾ cup all-purpose flour

Ingredients for Mushroom Cream Sauce:

8 oz package of baby bella mushrooms, quartered (GBFood)

1 garlic clove, finely chopped

4 Tablespoons of butter, divided

1 Tablespoon of all-purpose flour

1 ½ cups heavy cream

½ teaspoon salt, plus one pinch

¼ teaspoon pepper

1 fresh sprig of thyme

1. In a 3-quart saucepan, bring potatoes to a boil on high heat with enough water to cover, plus 2 inches. Reduce heat to medium, cover and simmer until potatoes are soft (about 10 minutes.)

2. Drain the potatoes and let cool enough to handle. Cut potatoes in half lengthwise and again crosswise. Put a few pieces at a time into a food mill and press the potatoes. Some skins are okay but try to keep the majority out.

3. With a large spoon, stir in salt and flour until dough forms. Not all of it will come together, but when you gather and press it with your hands it should.

4. On a lightly floured surface kneed the dough until it is smooth. (About 3 minutes.) Then roll the dough into a ball and cut in half, then cut each half into 3 equal pieces. Roll out 6 long tubes, which are ¾ inch thick.

5. Cut each tube into ¾ inch pieces.

6. (This step is not absolutely necessary, but I find it fun.) With the backside of a dinner fork, slide and roll the pieces from base to tip while pressing with your thumb, letting it roll over the edge of the fork a bit forming a rounded barrel shape.

7. Set up an oversized pot to bring 5 quarts of water to a boil. If water comes to a boil before Mushroom Cream Sauce is finished, turn the heat down and wait to cook the gnocchi.

8. Meanwhile in a large frying pan, melt 2 Tablespoons of butter over medium heat. Add garlic and cook stirring for 1 minute. Add mushrooms and cook stirring for 3 minutes. Add pinch of salt and cook until moisture releases and mushrooms brown (about 5 minutes.) Transfer mushrooms to a plate and set aside.

9. Return pan to stove and turn heat to medium-low. Melt remaining 2 Tablespoons of butter. Whisk in flour, whisking constantly for 1 minute. While whisking slowly pour in heavy cream. Cook for 5 minutes stirring steadily. Add thyme sprig, salt, and pepper. Let simmer for 5 minutes stirring occasionally until sauce thickens. Remove thyme sprig and return mushrooms to pan, heat through.

10. Drop gnocchi in boiling water. After it floats to the top, cook for 30 seconds. Remove as quickly as possible with a large slotted spoon into a bowl. Pour cream sauce over gnocchi and serve.

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Monday, December 6, 2010

Orange Vinaigrette Salad

2 heads of lettuce, chopped (GBFood)
2 apples with skin, sliced (GBFood)
1 cup of baby bella mushrooms, sliced (GBFood)
1 cup sprouts (GBFood)
1 avocado, chopped (GBFood)
3 carrots, shredded (GBFood)
1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup toasted almonds, chopped - bake almonds at 350 degrees F for 10 minutes, or until fragrant. Remove from oven and allow to completely cool before chopping
3 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled (put aside)

For vinaigrette:
zest from 2 oranges, and juice (GBFood)
1 garlic clove, peeled and sliced
2 Tablespoons honey
2 Tablespoons balsamic vinegar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup of extra-virgin olive oil

In a blender or food processor combine orange juice, zest, garlic, honey, balsamic vinegar, salt and pepper, until well blended. While the blender or food processor is still on slowly pour in the olive oil in a steady stream until blended. Store dressing in the refrigerator if not using right away.

Combine all salad ingredients and toss with a small amount of vinaigrette, it doesn't take a lot to get the orange flavor. Serve with crumbled bacon on top.

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