Thursday, May 31, 2012

Fort Valley Peach Salsa Grilled Pork, Garlic Parmesan Asparagus and Wild Herb Salad

Sliver a 2 pound pork loin into 2" x 3" medallions. Marinate the pork in Mango Peach Salsa.
Diced tomatoes, diced mangos, diced peaches, diced onions, diced roasted red sweet peppers, minced jalapeno peppers, lemon juice, apple cider vinegar, minced cilantro, and minced garlic, salt and pepper.
Separate evenly into three foil packets.
Grill on medium flame for 15 to 20 minutes.
Trim and wash the asparagus. Drizzle with olive oil and season with garlic....
....and parmesan cheese. Grill on top rack for 10 minutes.
These herbs were harvested from our hanging herb garden.
Wild herb salad: ginger, chocolate and pineapple mints, lemon thyme, rosemary, chives with flowers, basil, wild asian greens, arugula, and spinach.
Roasted red sweet peppers that were drizzled with olive oil and seasoned with Grind to a Salt by Simply Organics.
Very tasty!

Monday, May 28, 2012

Green Chilies Enchiladas

Fry very skinny strips of chicken, beef, fish or vegetables in a bit of salt and pepper and a splash of olive oil until slightly browned.

Boil 1 lb of tomatillos in 4 cups of water until soft, about 5 min. allow to cool then add cooked tomatillos and 2 cups of the cooking liquid to a blender. Then add 4 cloves of garlic, ½ bunch of cilantro, ½ a large yellow onion, ½ of a jalapeno (no seeds or veins, more or less can be added) 1 tsp each of salt and sugar. Blend on high until smooth. Heat a large frying pan with 2 tbls of sunflower seed oil, add the sauce to the frying pan and simmer for 5-10 minutes.
Shred cheese and set aside. This is Monterey Jack.
Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees. Lay out the tortilla and layer in your filling and cheese and roll very tightly.
Once they are all rolled and laid tight against one another, pour the green chilies sauce on top. Use your fingers to spread the sauce over every tortilla evenly. Then sprinkle a little bit of cheese over the top. Bake for 30 minutes.
 While the enchiladas are baking make refried beans. I love cannelloni. These are pan fried in a little bit of olive oil, salt and pepper.

Serve with salad and the beans and enjoy!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Apple Gallette

1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
6 tbls unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/2″ pieces
3 1/2 tbls chilled water

2 pounds (Granny Smith or Crispin) apples  peeled, cored and sliced
3 tbls sugar

Lemon sugar

Make the dough first: sift together the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Cut in the butter cubes with two knives. Make sure that you do this rather quickly, you want to keep the butter as cold as possible to insure a light, flaky pastry dough. Cut it in until the biggest pieces are about the size of large peas.
Add the chilled water one tbls at a time, stirring until the dough just holds together (you may not need all the water, depends on your flour and the humidity of your kitchen).
Dump the dough out on lightly floured counter and pat into a circle about 1.5″ inches thick. Double-wrap it in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes (or up to 2 days).
After the chilling period, take the dough out and let it sit on the counter for 10 minutes; this allows the dough to soften slightly so that when you roll it out, it won’t break into slivers or pieces.
Roll out the dough on a lightly floured counter. Carefully transfer the dough to a greased baking sheet.

Preheat the oven to 400 F. To fill the tart, overlap the sliced apples on top of the dough in a ring 2 inches from the edge and continue towards the center. To complete the tart, fold over the edges of the dough. It doesn’t have to look perfect, the beauty of a galette lies in its rusticity.

Wipe the crust and exposed apples with cream and sprinkle lemon sugar on top. 

Place the baking sheet in the center of the oven and bake the galette for 30 minutes, or until the apples are soft and have slightly browned edges. Try to rotate the tart every 15 minutes to ensure even browning of the crust.

When the tart is done baking, remove from the oven and slide it off the baking sheet and onto a cooling rack. Let it cool for at least 20 minutes before serving.

I picked up these crispin apples this morning at the Elmwood-Bidwell Farmer's Market and their tart juiciness were just what was needed in this pastry!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Lemon sugar and candied peels

Strip cut the peel off of an organic lemon, leaving some of the fruit on the rind.
Slice the fruit, remove the seeds and set aside.
Lay the peels in a bowl with fine cane sugar.

Squeeze some juice over the top.
Cover with more sugar and smooth flat. Cover with a salad plate, not plastic wrap.

Let sit in a cool cupboard for three or four days.
Separate the peels from the sugar and slice thinly.

Store wrapped in wax or butcher paper, never a plastic bag.
Stir up the sugar and store in a tightly sealed plastic container.

Great for sprinkling on top of sugar cookies, sweet breads and scones.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Spinach and Garlic & Herb Jack Cheese Ring

I went to the Farmer's Market on Bidwell on Saturday. I stopped by First Light Farm & Creamery's table and picked up a brick of their Garlic & Herb Jack cheese.
Rolled out the dough as long and thin as possible. Then drizzled it liberally with olive oil.
The spinach came from Winter Farms. A light sprinkle of Grind to a Salt seasoning from Simply Organics was added and then the whole thing was rolled up as tightly as possible.

The oven was pre-heated to 380 degrees. I formed a ring and slid it on a greased pan. The crust was oiled and more Grind to a Salt was sprinkled on top.
The ring was baked for about 40 minutes and then set out on a cutting board to cool for ten minutes before slicing.
This produces a soft bread with flavorful cheese and spinach swirls and a light brown crust.
This was served with wild rice and a side salad. The salad had Asian lettuces from our garden along with Winter Farm spinach, kumatos and Jonathan's Organic pea shoots from the Lexington co-op.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Surf & Turf Date Night

 I am addicted to this blend of Simply Organic's Grind to a Salt. Sea salt, organic mustard, organic celery seed, organic garlic, organic onion, organic chili peppers, organic black pepper. This is tasty on rice, quinoa and popcorn. Especially popcorn!
I had picked up these two organic petite tenderloin tips and organic shrimp from Wegmans just for a night like this. An unexpected kid free evening gave me just the impetus for a surf & turf dinner.

The foil tray was seasoned with two pats of butter, a bit of olive oil, lemon juice and a bit of Grind to a Salt. A drizzle of oil and seasoning on top of the sliced tips and shrimp and then broiled until just golden.

This salad mix is scrumptious with sweet peppers, kumatos, a bit of balsamic vinaigrette and pistachios.

Asiago cheese bread from Lexington Co-op.

 Served with Rainbow Quinoa...
...and Magic Hat's Elder Betty.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

B. Ferrante's - Specialty Italian Cookies and Pastry

Sarah Gilmartin and her mother Lucy saw a window open for them when Prish Moran of Sweetness 7 made this store front available. An opportunity to fulfill a long talked of fantasy of opening a specialty shop that served only the finest and most delectable confectionaries and traditional Italian baked goods.
B. Ferrante's is open from 7:30 am to 3:30 pm Wednesday through Saturday and Sunday 8 am to 2 pm at 218 Grant Street across from Westside Stories and behind Sweetness 7 near the corner of Grant and Lafeyette in the Westside of Buffalo.
"Our cookies, pastries, and breads are taken from family recipes that have been handed down throughout the years. All items are baked fresh daily, and are baked in small batches (to ensure freshness and quality) using only the best ingredients. Our commitment to tradition, and to top quality ingredients allows us, at B. Ferrante's, to bring our customer's, what we believe, are exceptional products that you won't find at larger, commercial bakeries."

When I went in this morning, the light streaming in through the exceptionally large glass windows was daydreamy and bucolic. It glanced off the shinning wood and glass cases, making all of the plated sweets and breads luminous.
Unlike many pastry and bread shops, there were plates of pizzettes and sausage rolls and greens rolled into bread. I picked up two cannoli (slivered almonds and chocolate chips) and two of their specialty rolls (salami, capicola, pepperoni, banana peppers and fresh mozzarella).
Here is Sarah preparing my cannoli.
The cream was bitter sweet and sharply earthy - perfect. The hand rolled shells were crisp and buttery.

The dusting of powdered sugar was delicate, Sarah was not heavy handed with it as many other pastry shops tend to be.
 Sitting in the warm glow of sunlight.

Family, inspiration and inspiring, keeps watch like a Roman Ancestor altar.

Layers of color encourage the shopper to linger and chat.

There are sets of hand towels in a basket above a bookcase of pizzelles and scones.
 Crockery, ceramic sculpture and baskets filled with baked goods are well shown, encouraging you to load your bag full.
Chocolate dipped macaroons.
Logs rolled with fig filling and topped with icing and candy pearls.

Customers can order trays of cookies for parties.

I am so glad there is such a fine Italian panetteria within walking distance of home. They will become a fast family favorite! Welcome to the neighborhood!

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