Tuesday, May 31, 2011
p.s. I love cooking with Surimi (imitation crab and shrimp), and I am always suggesting that my friends try cooking with it at least once, often times they are pleasantly surprised!
1.5 cups long grain rice
3 cups water
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon salt
1/2 teapoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon crumbled saffron threads
Combine all the ingredients in a pot, bring to a boil, cover, and cook for about 20 minutes until all the water is absorbed. Remove from heat, let cool slightly, and fluff with a fork. Spoon the rice into a bowl or platter, and set aside.
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup sliced scallions
2 red peppers, julienned
2 cups imitation crabmeat, thawed (also called surimi)
2 cups imitation shrimp, thawed (also called surimi), cut into 1/2 inch peices
1- 8 ounce piece cooked salmon fillet, broken into small pieces with a fork
1 cup of frozen baby peas
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
Place the oil in the same pot that the rice was cooked in, and heat over medium-high. Add the scallions and peppers, and cook until softened. Stir in the crabmeat and the shrimp, and cook for about 7 minutes. Add the peas and the salmon pieces, and season with salt and pepper, cook for several minutes longer until all is well combined and nicely sauteed. Remove from heat and add to the rice, using a large spoon to combine. Taste, season if necessary. Serve at room temperature. Can be stored in the refrigerator for several days.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
Grilled Eggplant Slices with Crushed Avocado. I love a good recipe that takes just a few minutes to throw together...they should all be this easy.
Cut the eggplant into round slices, about 1/4 of an inch thick, then cut in half to form semi-circles. Heat an indoor grill pan over medium-high heat. Lightly brush the grill pan with olive oil. Grill the eggplant slices, about 2-3 minutes per side, until soft and shiny. Repeat until all the slices have been grilled. Slice 2 ripened avocados in half, and spoon out the avocado flesh (discard the pits). Use a fork to "crush" the avocado slightly. Squeeze half of a lemon over the avocado, season with salt, pepper and za'atar. Drizzle with good extra virgin olive oil. Dig in.
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Side dish recipes- it seems like everyone is always searching for new, original ideas. Sometimes I find that the best dishes come alive just by throwing together whatever it is I have in my fridge. That's just what happened last night! All it took was a cauliflower, some cherry tomatoes, a little fresh dill, a squeeze of lemon juice, and of course, olive oil. The trick to this recipe is rather than using cauliflower florets (big pieces cut into little trees), I sliced the cauliflower into thin slices (almost like shaving it down) using a big knife. So what happened was, all these thin slices of cauliflower soaked up the lemony- dill flavor and became perfectly buttery-tasting and crunchy in the oven. We (our friends were over) literally just ate it out of the baking dish, without a trace left-over! So easy and so, so good.
1 cauliflower head, shaved into thin slices (use a big knife)
2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped dill
juice from 1 lemon
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Preheat oven 375. Combine all ingredients together in a baking dish (use a pyrex or casserole dish). Use your hands to toss together. Place in oven, uncovered, and bake for 40 minutes to 1 hour- depending how crunchy you like it!
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
As I flipped through the pages of Bon Appetit's May issue, I couldn't help but be taken by their photograph of this amazingly scrumptious looking dessert. The "Rhubarb and Raspberry Crostata" recipe offered everything I look for in a summer dessert- a flaky, golden crust filled with mouth watering tart raspberies. As it turned out, I had just accidentaly double-ordered strawberries from Fresh Direct (I also double-ordered whole milk, leaving me with 4 cartons instead of 2- why am I always doing this??) So, I knew that I had to do something with the strawberries before they went bad. I had all the ingredients needed for the dough in my pantry (white flour, whole wheat flour, sugar, kosher salt, butter, egg, and milk), so I decided to nix the rhubabrb because I didn't have any or want to go out and get some, and just replace the raspberries with lots and lots of strawberries. And that's pretty much how I ended up with what my husband called "the best dessert you've ever made". The dough in this dessert is really the show-stopper. The addition of 1/2 a cup of whole wheat flour adds a rustic, nutty effect, which really makes a difference. Before baking, the dough is sprinkled with raw sugar (an ingredient I did not have in my pantry, but I sent my husband to the coffeeshop next door to grab a handful of "Sugar in the Raw" packets- really a sinch).
For the original recipe, go to http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2011/05/rhubarb-and-raspberry-crostata
Here's my adaptation of the recipe:
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 sticks chilled unsalted butter, cubed
1 tablespoon whole milk
2 tablespoons cornstarch
2 pints fresh strawberries, stemmed and halved
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 egg, beaten
2 packets "sugar in the raw"
Dissolve the cornstarch in 2 tablespoons water in a small bowl, set aside.
In a heavy saucepan, combine the strawberries, sugar, and lemon juice. Stir together and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Cook, covered for 5 minutes. Uncover, stir in the cornstarch mixture, and cook until the strawberries soften a bit, and juices are released to form a thick sauce surrounding the strawberries, about 5 minutes. Cool.
Preheat oven to 400°. Roll out dough on floured parchment paper to 12" round; brush with beaten egg. Mound filling in center of crust; gently spread out, leaving 1 1/2" border. Gently fold edges of dough over filling, pleating as needed. Brush border with egg; sprinkle with raw sugar. Slide parchment with crostata onto a large rimmed baking sheet and bake until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly, about 45 minutes. Let crostata cool on baking sheet on a rack. Transfer crostata to a platter, cut into wedges, and serve with whipped cream or ice cream.