Archive for the 'Recipes' Category

Herbed Beets With Feta

Posted in Recipes on April 17th, 2011

Roasted beets with herbs and feta cheese make a wonderful vegetable side dish for many meals. Try the recipe sometime when you encounter fresh beets at the market.

Herbed Beets With Feta
Author: 
Recipe type: Sidedish
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 - 6
 
This is a very elegant, and elegantly simple to craft, warm vegetable side dish to serve. The combination of herbs, beets, and feta cheese make a rich and complex palate of flavors.
Ingredients
  • 6 beets (approx 1.5 lb)
  • 1½ tsp chopped fresh thyme
  • 1½ tsp chopped fresh chives
  • 3 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 oz feta cheese, crumbled
  • Ground black pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  2. In a small bowl mix together the thyme, chives, and olive oil, reserve
  3. Peel beets under running water and wrap them individually in foil
  4. Roast beets in oven until tender when pierced with a fork, approx. 1 hour
  5. Remove beets from oven, unwrap, and quarter them
  6. Place beets in serving bowl and drizzle them with herb and oil mixture
  7. Add crumbled feta cheese and pepper
Notes
Beets come in a variety of colors, all of which have very similar flavors. Try mixing different colors for a more interesting presentation. The beets can be roasted the night before and stored (in separate containers by color) if desired and reheated before adding herbed oil and feta cheese.

I particularly like this served with roasted lamb or medallions of beef tenderloin, but it pairs wonderfully with a variety of main dishes.

Powhatan Fritatta

Posted in Recipes on January 16th, 2011

Few things are more delicious and decadent for breakfast or brunch than the combination of crab and eggs.

While I’ve called this recipe for a crab and corn fritatta a Powhatan Fritatta in homage to the ancient Native American tribe of the Chesapeake Bay region, they would not have had a dish similar to this. It does, however, showcase some of their favorite ingredients: crab and corn.

Powhatan Fritatta
Author: 
Recipe type: Main
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 -6
 
Powhatan Fritatta is rich and decadent, with a nice mix of sweetness from the crab and corn and piquancy from the Old Bay Seasoning - definitely the makings of a luscious weekend breakfast or brunch.
Ingredients
  • 1 small onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon butter
  • 8 oz crab meat
  • ½ cup corn kernels
  • 4 eggs
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup milk
  • ½ cup shredded mild, white cheese (Monterey Jack, Havarti, Queso Fresco, or Fontina)
  • ¾ teaspoon Old Bay Seasoning
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. SautĂ© the onion in butter the onion and garlic until the onion is just clear. Add the crab meat, corn kernels and ⅓ (1/4 teaspoon) of the Old Bay Seasoning. Stir gently until combined and let cook for an additional 2 minutes.
  3. In a bowl whisk together the 4 eggs, 2 eggs, milk, and cream. Stir in the cheese, ¼ teaspoon of Old Bay Seasoning, and crab mixture.
  4. Pour all into a lightly greased pie pan. Top with remaining ¼ teaspoon of Old Bay Seasoning and freshly ground pepper and salt to taste.
  5. Bake until a knife inserted into the center of the frittata comes out clean, approximately 30 minutes.
Notes
Blue crab is the most "traditional" crab to use in this recipe but dungeness, king, or snow crab will work equally well. Use what you have available. You need the equivalent of 4 large eggs for this dish, but can easily replace any number of them with the appropriate amount of egg whites. You need ½ cup of dairy for this dish, but can adjust the fat content and richness of the dish by adjusting the proportions of milk and heavy cream. It can even be made with solely a ½ cup of skim milk. For an interesting variation replace the normal corn kernels with roasted whole kernel corn. It will lend a pleasant smokiness to the dish. For this I use Trader Joe's Roasted Corn rather than roasting my own.

Minchin quier! Wingutsee tuttascuc.
(Eat! The crab is good.)

Curried Pumpkin Soup

Posted in Recipes on October 30th, 2009

While I’ve called this recipe Curried Pumpkin Soup, it is really a winter squash soup. Because this soup is not sweet just about any winter squash (acorn, butternut, kobacha, Hubbard) can be used instead of pumpkin.

Curried Pumpkin Soup
Author: 
Recipe type: Soup
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 4 - 6
 
The rich flavor combinations in this creamy soup are complex and subtle, yet the soup is neither difficult to make nor overly filling. It is a wonderful meal on any cooler and/or rainier day or evening.
Ingredients
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1½ teaspoons fresh ginger, grated
  • 1 teaspoon dried, smoked chiles (chipotle, cobán, and/or ancho), chopped
  • 5 cups pumpkin, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 5 cups chicken broth
  • ½ teaspoon Jamaican curry powder
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • Salt & Pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Sauté the onion in butter in a wide 6-quart heavy pot over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until softened (3 - 5 minutes). Add the minced garlic and grated ginger allow this to cook for 1 minute longer.
  2. Add the dried, smoked chiles, pumpkin, and chicken broth. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook until pumpkin is completely tender (30 minutes).
  3. When the pumpkin is tender, add the Jamaican curry powder and heavy cream. Use a hand / stick blender to puree the soup until smooth, or transfer to a blender and blend in batches. Add salt, pepper, and additional curry powder to taste.
  4. Turn heat down to low and allow the soup to slowly come back up to heat ( 3 - 5 minutes).
Notes
For a more Caribbean flavor, substitute coconut milk for the heavy cream. This will also sweeten the soup somewhat, so you may want to adjust the levels of chiles, salt, and pepper. For a higher protein dish with a decidedly coastal flair, add some firm white fish (cod, haddock, pollack, or snapper) that has been sautéed, baked, or broiled to the soup after it has been puréed. Simply cut the fish into bite-sized pieces and fold them into the soup. Allow them to heat through and serve. For a more ancient and Native American variation, add roasted corn to soup at service. Toss 2 - 3 cups of corn kernels (fresh or frozen) with olive oil and place them in a baking dish. Season with black pepper. Broil, stirring often, until the corn begins to brown. Keep an eye on them! They burn quickly and easily. Sprinkle or mound the roasted corn onto each bowl of soup just before serving it up.

This rich and creamy soup also pairs well with Fresh Corn Salad, especially in warmer months or areas.

Serve in deep bowls with a side of cornbread, fry bread, or Johnny cakes and enjoy the autumn or winter!

Jamaican Curry Powder

Posted in Recipes on October 30th, 2009

Jamaican Curry Powder is quite different than Indian curry spice mixes, though it was inspired by it and shares the name, “curry.” It tends to be simpler in flavor and tastes more spicy and sweet as opposed to the spicy-hot and slightly sour flavors found in Indian curries. The signature difference between Jamaican and Indian curries is that Jamaicans use allspice in theirs while the Indians normally don’t.

Jamaican Curry Powder
Author: 
Recipe type: Spice Mix
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 100+
 
Jamaican curry powder is a great addition to many, many dishes. It can, among other things, be used in soups, salad dressings, or as dry rubs on meats.
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup whole coriander seeds
  • 2 tablespoons whole cumin seeds
  • 2 tablespoons whole mustard seeds
  • 2 tablespoons whole anise seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole fenugreek seeds
  • 1 tablespoon whole allspice berries
  • 5 tablespoons ground turmeric
Instructions
  1. Reserve the tumeric. Combine the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, mustard seeds, anise seeds, fenugreek seeds, and allspice berries in a pan. Toast them over medium heat, stirring or shaking them gently, until the spices slightly darken and become very fragrant. This takes approximately ten (10) minutes.
  2. When the spices have been toasted, remove them from the skillet, and allow them to cool to room temperature. Grind the toasted spices with the turmeric in either a spice grinder or mortar & pestle. Store the ground spices away from direct light in an airtight container at room temperature.

Once made, it will keep for many months if stored in a cool, dark, dry place.

At that point, no matter what you put it in or on, it’s all cut and curry. Mek wi nyam!.

Kefir

Posted in Recipes on December 8th, 2008

Kefir – also called kifir, keefir, kephir, kewra, talai, mudu kekiya, milkkefir, or búlgaros – is a yogurt-like (probiotic) fermented milk drink that originated in the Caucasus mountains near Turkey. It is both very tasty and very nutritious. It’s also quite easy to make at home.

Kefir is made from kefir grains, which are a active bacterial cultures, and milk.  Just about any type of milk can be used – cows milk (whole fat, reduced fat or skim). sheeps milk, goats milk, buffalo milk, or other. Just add the kefir grains to the milk and set it aside for a day or so to do its work.

Kefir (makes 2 cups)

Ingredients

1- 2 tablespoons milk Kifir grains.
2 cups fresh milk

Tools & Equipment

3 – 4 cup capacity clean glass jar with lid. The lid should not be completely airtight.
Strainer and spoon.
Wide mouthed jar or bowl

Directions

Sterilize the jar (including the lid!), strainer and Wide mouthed jar or bowl before use. A good cleaning followed by a hot (180ş+) water. This is a necessary step in any fermentation process so as to avoid wild strains of bacteria from ruining your product.

Pour the cool milk into jar. Do not fill the jar more than 3/4 full, otherwise the milk may overflow at some point during the fermentation process.

Add the kefir grains.

Close the jar and gently shake the contents, then let stand at room temperature in a reasonably dark location for 24 – 48 hours. The longer the kefir is stored the thicker and sourer the resulting kefir will become.

When the desired level of fermentation and thickening has occurred – usually in 24 – 48 hours – Pour the contents of the jar into a strainer and strain the kefir into a suitable clean container to separate the kefir grains from the liquid kefir.

The resulting liquid kefir can be served immediately or stored in the refrigerator for several days. Alternatively, you can pour the kefir into a sterilized airtight vessel and store it at room temperature for up to 24 hours in order to make the kefir richer (sourer) and increase its nutritional value.

The solids that you’ve strained off are kefir grains and can be stored or you can wash out the fermenting vessel and start your next batch of kefir right then.

Kefir is a rich and creamy drink, but it can be quite sour in flavor. Many people add honey or fruit juices and/or nectars to the kefir in order to make a variety of smoothies. Kefir is also a wonderful ingredient in other dishes as a milk or cream substitute.

I hope you enjoy – especially you, Christy!