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Sunday, January 30, 2011

Pane Siciliano ~~ Sicilian Bread

To carb or not to carb...we vote carb, in moderation of course.  Homemade eliminates all the words found on labels that no one can pronounce.  Besides playing with dough is fun although, I would like to be rolling in dough (click the ads on the blog...hint hint :-)) 

Don't fear bread making.  All you need are a few tools: timer, kitchen thermometer, kitchen scale and a mixer with a dough hook.  Don't cook the yeast.  Water should be 105 to 115 degrees.  If it doesn't foam, you killed it so just toss it out and start again.  I have murdered more then my share of yeast bits. 

Pane Siciliano // Sicilian Bread
from Carol Field
The Italian Baker

2 1/2t active dry yeast
1/4 cup warm water
1T olive oil
1t malt syrup
1 cup water room temperature
about 2 1/2 cups (350 grams) fine semolina flour
1 cup plus 1T (150 grams) unbleached all purpose flour
3T (10-15 grams) salt
1/3 cup sesame seeds

~ stir yeast into 1 1/4 cups warm water in a large mixing bowl
~ let stand until creamy about 10 minutes
~ stir in oil and malt with the paddle
~ add flour and salt and mix until smooth
~ change to dough hook and knead on medium speed until dough is firm, compact and elastic with lots of body (like playdough) 4 to 5 minutes
~ finish kneading by hand on a lightly floured surface
~ first rise place dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap and let rise until double about 1 1/2 hour
~ the dough should be springy and blistered but still soft and velvety
~ shaping and second rise punch the dough down and knead briefly
~ let it rest for 5 minutes
~ flatten it with your forearm into a square
~ roll it into a long, fairly narrow rope, bout 20 to 22 inches long
~ dough should be so elastic that it could almost be swung and stretched like a jump rope
~ cut the dough in half and shape each half into a loaf
~ roll the dough into a 1 1/2 inch thick rope then coil into a figure that looks like an inverted S
~ continue the coiling form each end until ends meet
~ place the loaves on a  parchment paper sprinkled with cornmeal
~ spray loaf with a misting of water and sprinkle with sesame seeds
~ pat seeds down very gently
~ spray plastic wrap with a light coating of vegetable oil spray and cover loaves
~ place a kitchen towel on top of plastic
~ let rise until doubled 1 to 1 1/2 hour
~ heat oven 425 degrees (if using a baking stone turn oven on 30 minutes before baking and sprinkle with cornmeal just before adding loaves)
~ bake 10 minutes and spray 3 times with water
~ reduce oven to 400 degrees and bake 25 to 30 minutes longer
~ cool on rakes

Friday, January 28, 2011

Roasted Salmon, Beets and Potatoes with Horseradish Cream

Beets, beets and more beets winters finest vegetable...  Best of all kids love the bright colored pee...the day after.  What a way to sell a vegetable to kids.
Great dish liked by all after a few grunts of despair, "fish, fish...we hate fish!"

Roasted Salmon, Beets and Potatoes with Horseradish Cream
from Food and Wine Magazine
Quick from Scratch One Dish Meals Cookbook

1 1/2 pounds organic beets peeled and diced into cubes
4T safflower oil
1t sea salt
1/2 dried dill
freshly ground pepper
2 1/2 pounds organic baking potatoes diced into cubes
1 1/2 pound skinless salmon fillets (not farmed raised)
1/2 cup heavy cream
2 - 4T bottled horseradish

~ heat oven 450 degrees (I used toaster oven)
~ on large baking sheet toss the beets with 1T oil, 1/4t salt, 1/4t dill and 1/8t pepper
~ cook in upper third of oven stirring once for 20 minutes, stirring once
~ remove pan from oven and push beets to one side and add potatoes
~ toss the potatoes with 1T oil, 1/4t salt and 1/8t pepper
~ return pan to oven and cook 15 to 20 minutes, stirring once (keep separated)
~ heat cast iron skillet medium heat and add 2T oil
~ sprinkle fish with 1/4t salt and  1/8t pepper
~ place in skillet 4 minutes and flip cook another 3 to 4 minutes
~ mix cream and horseradish
~ serve

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Roasted Beet and Tangelo Salad with Spicy Greens

I am beeting my head up against this blog.  Google has informed me "you have used up all of your you want to buy more?"  huh???  ummmm NO! So I am cutting back my pictures on the blog but opened a Flickr account  with additional photos, so view and enjoy!

We really enjoyed this salad.  The original recipe calls for blood orange; however, my blood orange tree is still a baby and not producing so I plucked a few tangelos.  Also, I opted for pure arugula since it is growing in my garden.

Roasted Beet and Tangelo Salad with Spicy Greens
from Maria Helm Sinskey
The Vineyard Kitchen
1 1/2 pounds of medium gold beets
1 1/2 pounds of medium red beets
extra virgin olive oil
freshly ground pepper
4 medium tangelos
Vinaigrette (recipe below)
1/2 pound of arugula
1/4 cup sherry vinegar
1/4 freshly chopped chives

~ preheat oven 400 degrees
~ trim tops and roots from the beets and wash well
~ place the red beets on a piece of foil large enough to fold over and seal
~ drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper
~ seal the foil and repeat with gold beets
~ place both on baking sheet and roast for an hour to an hour and a half until beets are tender when pierced with knife
~ allow beets to cook and peel
~ keep two separated or the red will bleed onto the yellow
~ toss each with 2T of sherry vinegar and season with salt and vinegar
~ marinate for at least an hour or overnight
~ cut each beet into wedges
~ peel the tangelos and remove all of the white pith
~ slice into rounds or however you please
~ wash arugula
~ in a large bowl toss the beets and their juices together with enough vinaigrette to coat
~ add the tangelo segments and toss gently
~ drizzle the greens with vinaigrette to moisten and toss with the beets and tangelo
~ season with salt and pepper
~ garnish with chopped chives

tangelo sherry vinaigrette

2 small tangelos
1 medium shallot peeled trimmed and minced
2T sherry vinegar
freshly ground pepper
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

~ juice and strain the tangelo and measure 1/4 cup of juice
~ in a medium bowl whisk the juice with the shallots and the sherry vinegar season with salt and pepper to taste and let the mixture marinate for 10 minutes
~ whisk in the olive oil to taste

items from our garden: tangelos, arugula and chives

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Green Chile Chicken Tamales

Everyone I know says tamales and thinks too much time and effort, well not really.  Entertaining, lively and mouthwatering best describe our tamale reality.  Folding the tamale is the most difficult aspect.  We enjoy this recipe as well as the green corn tamale from El Cholo's.  Make extra sauce!
see more photo's

little hands helping out

folded before the finish fold


Green Chile Chicken Tamales
from Rick Bayless
Mexico One Plate At A Time

1 (8 ounce) package dried corn husks or fresh banana leaf (what I used) cut into segments 
1 lb tomatillo, husked and rinsed (10-12 medium)
2 to 4 fresh jalapenos stemmed
4 large garlic cloves, peeled
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups organic chicken broth
4 cups (about 1 lb.)  cooked roasted chicken coarsely shredded
2/3 cup roughly chopped fresh cilantro
8 ounces  Earth's Balance vegetable shortening
1 1/4 teaspoons baking powder
3 1/2 cups dried masa harina, for tamales mixed with 2 1/4 cups hot water
1 -1 1/2 cup chicken broth

~ cover the husks with very hot water, weight with a plate to keep them submerged, and let stand for a couple of hours until the husks are pliable or if using fresh banana do not soak.  They are ready to use.
~ on a baking sheet, roast the tomatillos about 4 inches below a very hot broiler until soft and blacken in spots, about 5 minutes; flip and roast the other side. Cool 
~ transfer to a food processor or blender, along with  juice that has run onto the baking sheet. Add the chiles and garlic and process to a smooth puree
~ heat the oil in a medium-size saucepan over medium high. When quite hot, add the puree all at once and stir until noticeably thicker and darker, about 5 minutes  cover the pot with a splatter screen 
~ Add 2 cups of the broth and simmer over medium heat  until thick enough to coat a spoon quite heavily, at least 10 minutes 
~ season  with salt
~ stir in the chicken and cilantro; cool completely 
~ beat shortening with 2 teaspoons salt and the baking powder with an electric mixer on medium-high speed until light in texture, about 1 minute. 
~ continue beating as you add the masa in three additions 
~ reduce the speed to medium-low and add 1 cup of the remaining broth
~ continue beating for another minute or so, until a ½-teaspoon dollop of the batter floats in a cup of cold water (if it floats you can be sure the tamales will be tender and light)
~ beat in enough of the remaining ½ cup of broth to give the mixture the consistency of soft (not runny) cake batter; it should hold its shape in a spoon 
~ taste the batter and season with additional salt if you think it needs some 
~  for the lightest textured tamales, refrigerate the batter for an hour or so, then rebeat, adding a little more broth or water to bring the mixture to the soft consistency it had before (I am to lazy to do this)
~ for forming the tamales, separate out 24 of the largest and most pliable husks ones that are at least 6 inches across on the wider end and 6 or 7 inches long. If you can't find enough good ones, overlap some of the large ones to give wide, sturdy surfaces to spread the batter on. Pat the chosen husks dry with a towel.  If using banana leaf just wash and dry and cut into 6x7" pieces
~ cut twenty-four 8- to 10-inch pieces of string or thin strips of corn husks
~ one at a time, form the tamales: Lay out one of your chosen corn husks with the tapering end toward you
~ spread about ¼ cup of the batter into about a 4-inch square, leaving at least a 1 ½-inch border on the side toward you and a ¾-inch border along the other sides (with large husks, the borders will be much bigger)
~  spoon about 1 ½ tablespoons of the filling down the center of the batter
~ pick up the two long sides of the cornhusk and bring them together (this will cause the batter to surround the filling)
~ if the uncovered borders of the two long sides you're holding are narrow, tuck one side under the other; if wide, roll both sides in the same direction around the tamale (If the husk is small, you may feel more comfortable wrapping the tamal in a second husk)
~ finally, fold up the empty 1 ½-inch section of the husk (to form a tightly closed bottom leaving the top open), and secure it in place by loosely tying one of the strings or strips of husk around the tamale
~ as they're made, stand the tamales on their folded bottoms in the prepared steamer
~ steaming 24 husk-wrapped tamales can be done in batches in a collapsible vegetable steamer set into a large, deep soup kettle
~  it is best to line the rack or upper part of the steamer with leftover corn husks to protect the tamales from direct contact with the steam and to add more flavor
~  leave tiny spaces between the husks so condensing steam can drain off
~   when all the tamales are in the steamer, cover them with a layer of leftover cornhusks
~ if your husk-wrapped tamales don't take up the entire steamer, fill in the open spaces with loosely wadded aluminum foil (to keep the tamales from falling over)
~ set the lid in place and steam over a constant medium heat for about 1 ¼ hours. (depending on the size of the tamales you make, it can take up to 4 hours)
~ watch carefully that all the water doesn't boil away and, to keep the steam steady, pour boiling water into the pot when more is necessary
~ tamales are done when the husk peels away from the masa easily
~ let tamales stand in the steamer off the heat for a few minutes to firm up
~ for the best textured tamales, let them cool completely, then re-steam about 15 minutes to heat through.

items from our garden: banana leaf, jalapenos, cilantro, tomatillos

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Orange-Cranberry Scones with Turbinado Sugar

I found this recipe while thumbing through my Food and Wine 2010 Annual Cookbook.  What caught my eye was the lack of heavy cream in this recipe as well as the simplicity.  Five star rating, nothing flashy just basic, easy and good.
Here is the direct link on their web site Food and Wine.

 Orange-Cranberry Scones with Turbinado Sugar
from Food and Wine Magazine

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup quick-cooking oats
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons turbinado sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small cubes and chilled
1/2 cup dried organic cranberries
2 teaspoons grated tangelo zest
1/2 cup buttermilk, plus more for brushing

~ preheat the oven to 425° or 400°for convection
~ line a baking sheet with parchment paper
~ in a bowl, whisk the flour, oats, baking powder, salt and 3 tablespoons of the sugar
~ using a pastry blender or 2 knives, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal
~ mix in the cranberries and orange zest
~ stir in the 1/2 cup of buttermilk until a stiff dough forms; knead until it just comes together
~ on a floured surface, pat the dough into a 3/4-inch-thick round and cut into 8 wedges
~ brush with buttermilk. Sprinkle the remaining sugar on top
~ transfer to the baking sheet and bake in the center of the oven for 17 minutes, until lightly browned
~ transfer the scones to a rack and let cool slightly. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Chach..Chach...Changes for next time....
1cup of dried cranberries

Friday, January 21, 2011

Chinese Chicken Salad

5 Stars...Everyone loved it and why not it contained the kids favorite condiment soy sauce.  My kids really loved the addition of sugar to the lettuce.  The usually are lettuce phobic.  Thirty five minutes from start to finish makes this recipe family friendly.

Another Food and Wine Magazine winner.  Direct link to recipe on their web page Chinese Chicken Salad from Joanne Chang.

Chinese Chicken Salad  
from Food and Wine Magazine

1/4 cup low fat mayonnaise
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
3 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1/4 cup tamari soy sauce
2 tablespoons toasted sesame oil
1/2  tablespoon Tabasco 
One 1/2-inch piece of fresh ginger, peeled and minced
1 small garlic clove, minced
One 2 1/2-pound rotisserie chicken—meat shredded
3 scallions, thinly sliced
4 celery ribs, thinly sliced
1 cup unsalted toasted pine nuts
3/4 cup coarsely chopped cilantro

One small head of romaine, cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 oranges, peeled with a knife and cut into sections
Lime wedges, for serving

~ In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with 1/4 cup of the vinegar, 3 tablespoons of the sugar and the soy sauce, sesame oil, Tabasco, ginger and garlic. Add the chicken, scallions, celery, pine nuts and cilantro and toss until coated

~In another bowl, toss the romaine with the remaining 2 tablespoons of vinegar, 1 1/2 teaspoons of sugar and the olive oil. Spread the romaine in 4 shallow bowls. Top with the chicken salad and the oranges and serve with lime wedges.

*** changes for next time
  • do not add the chicken to the dressing - top the lettuce with it and then place dressing on top of it.  I think the vinegar in the sauce broke down the chicken causing it to get a bit mushy.
  • add bean thread noodles/ cellophane noodles to top

Monday, January 17, 2011

Happy 75th Anniversary Joshua Tree National Park

Wonderful day in one of the most beautiful places, Joshua Tree.  We climbed ancient boulders.  Hiked winding trails and found hidden images.

 can you see the the face?

 wolf and whale

 two Native American Women

 guardian in cactus garden

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Basic Roasted Chicken

I got a new toy oh ay oh (80's song).  Don't you just love wonderfully fun gifts, I do!  Mine? A Char Broil Big Easy Infrared Turkey Fryer.  A ring of fire cooks the meat while a center drain in the middle catches all of the fat.  I would rate it a 9 out of 10: easy clean up, juicy chickens (only thing I cooked thus far), minus 1 because I thought the chicken skin would have a snap crispness and it lacks that.  Chickens cook 15 minutes per pound.  It can also cook turkey and beef.

I cooked two chickens in one hour

big and easy

Basic Roasted Chicken
from Me

1 organic kosher whole chicken
2T extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt
freshly ground pepper
garlic minced

~ make a mixture with the olive oil, salt, pepper and garlic
~ loosen chicken skin and rub mixture on and under skin
~ place in Big Easy 15 minutes per pound or in covered cast iron pot 400 degrees until instant read thermometer reads 165 in thickest part of chicken

Pan-Seared Hamburgers

Burgers are delicious.  Great burgers are hard to find.   The best are cooked over an open fire, but what do you do when you don't want to go through the rigmarole?  Why use a great cast iron skillet or stove top grill.

burgers are dimpled in the middle

nice glaze from cast iron

Pan-Seared Hamburgers
from The Editor's of American Test Kitchen // American Test Kitchen
The Best New Recipes

1 1/2 pound 80% organic lean ground beef
1t salt
1/2t  freshly ground pepper
buns, onions, lettuce, tomato.........

~ break up the meat and sprinkle with salt and pepper
~ toss lightly with you hands to distribute seasonings
~ divide the meat into the amount of burgers you want to make
~ with cupped hands toss the portion back and forth to form loose ball
~ pat lightly to flatten 3/4 inch thick
~ press center of patty down with your fingertips until about 1/2 inch thick divot in the center is created
~ heat cast iron skillet / grill medium high heat
~ cook burgers turning only once to desired doneness
~ 3 minutes per side rare
~ 3 1/2 minutes medium rare
~ 4 minutes medium
~ 5 minutes well done

Wild Mushroom Risotto

We all really enjoy risotto and mushroom just happens to be our favorite.  Like fondue you need to stir, stir, stir or it will stick and gum up.  Done right, you will feast on a rich flavorful dish that your kids will gobble up.

soak dried mushrooms and save the liquid

cook fresh mushrooms one type at a time

heat rice 

Wild Mushroom Risotto
from Maria Helm Sinskey
The Vineyard Kitchen

1 pound cremini mushrooms
3 1/2 oz fresh shiitake mushrooms
4 oz dried mushrooms or more
4 cups filtered water
extra virgin olive oil
2 large shallots peeled, trimmed and minced
1 large garlic clove, peeled, trimmed and minced
1T fresh thyme leaves
sea salt
freshly ground pepper
8 cups vegetable broth
1 medium sweet onion minced
4 cups arborio rice
1 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
reggiano parmesan

~ add dried mushtooms to 4 cups hot water
~ slice fresh mushtooms
~ heat saute pan over high heat add 1T olive oil
~ add cremini mushrooms with some of the shallots, garlic and thyme leaves until they are golden and most of the juices are almost dry 5 to 10 minutes
~ remove cremini and saute the shiitake mushrooms in the same manner
~ remove hydrated dried mushrooms from liquid and reserve liquid
~ saute them as well
~ combined all the mushrooms
~ combined the stock and reserved mushroom liquid in a large pot and bring to a boil
~ in a large cast iron skillet set at medium high heat
~ add 2T olive oil
~ add onion and saute until translucent 4 minutes
~ season with salt and pepper
~ add rice and stir until thoroughly heated
~ add white wine and bring to a boil while stirring constantly until wine is completely absorbed by the rice
~ add 6oz of stock at a time to the rice stirring constantly and adding more as it is absorbed
~ keep adding more liquid until it becomes the texture you desire
~ serve immediately
~ garnish with cheese grated with a micro grater

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Dark Chocolate Hot Fudge Sauce

Birthday Time!  "What kind of birthday cake do you want?" "Ice cream" "You want an ice cream cake?" "No, just ice cream"  I smile like a cheshire cat.  I don't have to make a cake, yahoo!  I break out the colors of the rainbow sprinkles and loads of candy along with this hot thick coal colored fudge sauce. 

 butter, cream and sugar

unmanned sprinkle station
sprinkles gone wild

Maida Heatter's Book of Great Chocolate Desserts

The Worlds Best Hot Fudge Sauce
from Maida Heatter's
The Book of Great Chocolate Desserts

1/2 cup heavy cream
3T sweet butter cut into small pieces
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup dark brown sugar firmly packed
pinch of salt
1/2 cup strained unsweetened dutch processed cocoa powder (make sure you use dutch process it is treated with an alkalizing agent to modify its color and give it a milder flavor)

~ put cream and butter in 1 quart sauce pan over moderate heat
~ stir until butter is melted and cream just comes to a low boil
~ add both sugars and stir for a few minutes until they dissolve
~ reduce heat and add salt and cocoa
~ stir briskly with a small whisk until smooth
~ remove from heat
~ serve

Monday, January 10, 2011

Penne with Roasted Marsala Mushrooms

Air, water and pasta substance for life...for my kids at least.  Another harried night.  No time to shop.  Empty refrigerator and hungry brood.  What to do!  I peered at my hundreds of cookbooks and grabbed Food & Wine Magazine's Quick from Scratch Pasta Cookbook.  FYI  Food & Wine magazine has fabulous recipes.  I highly recommend visiting their web site Food & Wine.
This recipe was a huge hit.  They fought over the bits left in the pot.  Next time I need to double the recipe.

Quick from Scratch Pasta Cookbook 

Penne with Roasted Marsala Mushrooms
from Food & Wine Magazine
Quick from Scratch Pasta Cookbook

1 pound crimini mushrooms cut in quarters
2T safflower oil
1/2t salt
1/2t freshly ground pepper
2 garlic cloves minced
1/4 cup dry Marsala
1/2 cup organic chicken stock
1T tomato paste
1T butter
1 lb penne
1/8 cup chopped parsley

~ heat oven 400 (I used toaster oven)
~ in medium size rectangular Pyrex toss mushrooms with oil and 1/4t each salt and pepper
~ roast for 10-15 minutes, some liquid will remain in pan
~ while mushrooms roast make your pasta ( do not add pinch of salt to the water until the water is boiling)
~ drain and reserve 1/4 cup of pasta cooking water
~ once mushrooms are done transfer to stove top skillet
~ stir in garlic and Marsala
~ simmer until the liquid is almost evaporated about 4 minutes
~ add broth, reserve pasta water, and tomato paste
~ simmer until a bit more than 1/4 cup of liquid remains about 2 minutes
~ add remaining salt, pepper and butter
~ remove from heat
~ toss into pasta
~ toss in parsley

Grissini Torinesi "Breadsticks from Turin"

Most of these did not make it to the table as you can see in the sparse picture above.  These beauties are what breadsticks should taste like and only take a little over 90 minutes to make. Fun to make especially when you whip the sticks into shape.

foamy yeast
smells great

first and only rise
cutting works better if you have a perfect square; however, mine are never perfect...oh well...

cuttings before shaping
I use a pasty cutter

fresh out of the oven
my shaping is not the best and my sticks tend to look like bones

Grissini Torinesi "Breadsticks from Turin"
from Carol Field
The Italian Baker

1 3/4t dry active yeast
1T malt syrup (see amazon link below if you have no idea what this is)
1 1/4 cup warm water (95 - 105 degrees)
2T olive oil plus a bit more for brushing dough
3 3/4 (500g) unbleached all purpose flour
1 1/2t (8 grams) salt
semolina for sprinking

~ put warm water and yeast in mixing bowl
~ oil a Tablespoon measuring spoon and use it to get malt syrup (this makes this sticky syrup drop off of the spoon)
~ add the malt syrup to water and yeast and stir gently to combine
~ let sit about 10 minutes until yeast foams
~ mix in oil with paddle
~ add flour,and salt
~ mix until dough comes together
~ switch to dough hook and knead at low speed about 3 minutes
~ remove from bowl and knead briefly by hand
~ pat the dough into a 14" by 14" square
~ place on a well floured surface
~ lightly brush the top with oil and cover with plastic wrap
~ let rise until doubled about an hour
~ preheat oven 400
~ sprinkle the dough with semolina flour before cutting
~ cut the dough crosswise into 4 equal sections
~ cut each section crosswise again into 5 equal strips (about as fat as a finger)
~ pick up a piece and grasp it with your fingers and stretch to the length of your baking sheet (we bounce it as we's a family event)
~ place on baking sheet
~ bake 15 to 20 minutes until browned
~ cool on rack

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Sweet and Sour Meatballs

I grew up with this recipe and it has become one of my kids favorites after a few tweaks.  Fast, easy and tasty best describes this family classic.  If possible try to find cranberry sauce with out corn syrup.  I like to use kosher ground white turkey for two simple reasons.  First, kosher meat is brined and brined meat taste better and second the white meat does not have that turkey tang which I can not stand.

Sweet and Sour Turkey Meatballs
from Me

1 can jelled cranberry sauce
1 bottle of chili sauce (found in the ketchup aisle of grocery store)
2 lbs kosher white ground turkey
1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 egg
1 1/2t granulated garlic
1 1/2T chopped dehydrated onions

~ put cranberry sauce and chili sauce in stainless  medium to large steel sauce pan
~ heat low/medium
~ mix turkey, bread crumbs, egg, garlic and onions gently
~ gently form meatballs ( do not squish to form)
~ add meatball to pan
~ cook until done about 30 minutes

Another family tradition is the accompaniment of rice and organic peas.
This dish is just as great using ground beef.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Braised Lamb with White Beans and Aromatic Vegetables

Four out of five finicky eaters enjoyed this meal.  Surprisingly, all the young'ins gobbled this meal up.  Time is a luxury, I just don't always have...thank goodness for the pressure cooker.  Of course I did not pre-soak the beans over night.  This is where the pressure cooker is golden.  As you can see in the photo, I slightly under cooked the beans since they would continue cooking in the oven.

pressure cooked beans
 roasted vegetables and fresh herbs

rosemary growing in our garden

beans and vegetables so very very good

Pressure Cooker Great North Beans
2 1/2 cups great north beans
8 1/2 cups water
3T oil

~ put all items in pressure cooker
~ bring pressure cooker to high
~ maintain pressure for 18 minutes
~ turn heat off
~ allow pressure to release naturally

Braised Lamb  with White Beans and Aromatic Vegetables
from Maria Helms Sinskey's
The Vineyard Kitchen

10 medium organic carrots
4 organic celery stalks
1 large sweet onion
8 garlic cloves
5T extra virgin olive oil
sea salt and freshly ground pepper
1 14oz can organic chopped tomatoes in their juices
6 sprigs italian parsley
12 fresh thyme springs
2 2" fresh rosemary
precooked beans
3 large lamb steaks
one bottle of dry white wine (two buck chuck pinot grigio)

~ preheat oven 450
~ wash and trim carrots and celery cut into 1/2" pieces
~ peel and cut onion into thin slices
~ peel and trim, cut garlic in half
~ place vegetables in roaster and toss with 2T olive oil, salt and freshly ground pepper
~ roast in preheated oven 30-40 minutes, stir occasionally
~ remove pan from oven and place on stove so you can add other ingredient before placing back in oven
~ add to roaster can of tomatoes with juices, herbs and half of the beans
~ heat large cast iron skillet over medium high heat
~ add 2 T olive oil
~ season lamb with salt and pepper
~ sear on both side until browned (turn with kitchen tongs)
~ remove lamb from pan and place on top of vegetables
~ pour oil left in pan into roaster
~ add wine to skillet and bring to boil then simmer until reduced by half
~ pour wine into roasting pan over the lamb as well as any brown bits
~ cover toaster with lid or aluminum foil and place in preheated oven for 20 minutes
~ remove lamb, 1/4 vegetables and all of the liquid from roaster and place in pressure cooker
~ cook in pressure cooker high 18 minutes maintain high heat
~ allow to pressure to release naturally
~ serve with extra beans (my youngest favorite) on the side
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