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Golden Beets and Asparagus Salad with Kalamata Olives and Feta Cheese

May 22, 2018

Golden Beets and Aspargus Salads

  • 4 to 5 golden beets, ends cut off and wrapped in aluminum foil
  • 2 bunches asparagus, ends cut off and washed
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Roast the beets for an hour in the oven. Take the foil off and peel the beets and cut into one-inch pieces. Keep aside.

Place the asparagus tips onto a lined cookie sheet. Drizzle the oil, salt and pepper. Mix well and roast in the same oven for 30 minutes or till the asparagus is soft and golden brown. Keep aside.

  • ½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
  • ½ cup kalamata olives, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • Pepper

Add the mustard to a small bowl. Add the white wine vinegar and pepper. Drizzle the olive oil while whisking well.

Place the beets and asparagus in a serving bowl. Pour the mustard sauce and mix well. Add the cheese and olives. Serve room temperature.

Shrimp Asparagus Bok Choy with Sweet Chili Sauce

May 21, 2018

A yummy Chinese inspired recipe with delicious asparagus!

Sweet Chili Sauce

  • ½ cup rice vinegar
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon sugar or honey
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons Shao Hsing Hua Tiao cooking wine (cooking sherry will do)
  • 2 tablespoons fish sauce

Transfer the vinegar, sugar, garlic, pepper flakes, cooking wine and fish sauce to a small saucepan. Bring to a boil and simmer on a lower heat for about 7 to 8 minutes until the mixture is reduced by half. Check for seasonings and keep aside.

  • 1 pound medium shrimp, cleaned and deveined
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3 tablespoons extra light olive oil
  • 1 bunch bok choy, chopped
  • 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut in 2 inch pieces
  • 3 garlic cloves, grated
  • 1 inch ginger, grated

Sprinkle the cornstarch and salt all over the shrimp. Mix and heat a wok like pan with the oil. Brown the shrimp on both sides in 2 to 3 batches- briefly. Take the shrimp out and set aside. Reheat the pan and add the garlic and ginger. Saute on medium heat and add the vegetables. Saute for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the shrimp and the chili sauce. Bring to a boil and simmer till the shrimp is cooked through. Serve with brown rice.

 

Corn and Green Bean Pappardalle with Herbed Ricotta

May 20, 2018
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 small yellow onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen corn
  • 1 cup green beans, chopped and rinsed
  • Salt
  • ½ cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 2 cups homemade or bottled marinara sauce
  • ½ pound cooked pasta (I used pappardelle) with ½ cup pasta water to spare

Heat a wide frying pan with olive oil. Saute the onion and garlic on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the corn and green beans. Sprinkle a teaspoon of salt. Saute on medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Add the basil and check for seasonings. Add the marinara sauce, bring to a boil and then add the cooked pasta with the pasta water. Mix well, bring to a boil and check for seasonings.

Herbed Ricotta

  • 1 cup fresh ricotta
  • 2 garlic cloves, grated
  • Zest of one lemon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup basil, chopped
  • 1/3 cup parsley, chopped

Mix everything together in a large bowl. Check for seasonings and serve with a dollop of ricotta on a serving of pasta.

Turkish Style Bulgur Pilaf

May 8, 2018

Healthy and delicious!!

  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoon Turkish tomato paste (or use regular tomato paste)
  • 1 cup bulgur wheat (I used quick cooking bulgur from Trader Joes)
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt

Heat a medium saucepan with the olive oil. Add the tomato paste and cook on medium heat for a minute or two. I bought some Turkish tomato paste from Istanbul. I got the spicy kind, which has chilies in it- but regular tomato paste can be substituted. Add the bulgur and stir. Add the broth and salt and bring to a boil. Lower the heat, cover and let cook for 10 minutes. Turn heat off, fluff with fork and let sit for another 5 minutes. Check for seasonings and serve.

Turkish Style Kebabs with Yogurt Sauce

May 7, 2018

One of our best vacations was in Istanbul- the food was out of this world.. These kebabs remind me of the amazing trip…

  • 1 cup panko breadcrumbs
  • ½ cup milk

Soak the breadcrumbs in the milk for about 10 minutes and keep aside.

  • 1 pound ground pork, beef or dark meat turkey
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • 1 teaspoon sumac
  • 1 teaspoon dried mint
  • 4 garlic cloves, chopped
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • ½ cup fresh parsley, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

Transfer the soaked breadcrumbs, ground meat, salt, cumin, all spice, sumac, dried mint, garlic, egg and parsley to a large food processor. Process till a smooth mixture is achieved. Take out and let the mixture marinate for at least 2 to 3 hours. Form into meatballs or kebabs, about ¼ cup of mixture for each kebab. Heat a frying pan with the oil and cook the kebabs on a medium heat, turning every 2 to 3 minutes until all sides are brown. Cook till the kebabs are cooked through- about 10 to 15 minutes. Serve with yogurt sauce.

Yogurt Sauce

  • 1 cup full fat yogurt, whisked
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried mint
  • ¼ cup fresh dill, chopped
  • Juice of half a lemon

Mix all the ingredients including the yogurt in a bowl. Serve with the kebabs.

 

Turkish Style Lentil Soup

May 6, 2018

Yummy lentil soup for meatless Monday!!

  • 1 tablespoon butter or extra light olive oil
  • ½ medium yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon dried mint
  • ½ cup red lentils, washed
  • 1 small potato, peeled and cut in half inch squares
  • 2 to 3 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • Fresh lemon juice

Heat a medium saucepan with the oil. Add the onion, ground cumin and mint. Saute on medium heat, stirring constantly for 5 minutes. Add the lentils, potatoes and broth. Bring to a boil and add the salt and turmeric and simmer on medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes adding more broth if necessary. Once the potato chunks are soft, take off the heat and let cool. Transfer to blender and blend till smooth. Pour the liquid back to the saucepan and bring to a boil. Adjust the consistency by either adding more broth or cooking off extra broth. Check for seasonings. Squirt some fresh lemon juice right before serving.

Shrimp Cake Sandwich with Chili Lime Sauce

May 1, 2018

Great recipe for the warm days coming our way…

  • 12 medium shrimp, deveined and cleaned with tails off
  • 2 green onions, chopped
  • ½ yellow pepper, chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chives, chopped
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1½ cups panko breadcrumbs
  • Salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter

Transfer the shrimp to a food processor and process for 10 seconds. Add the green onions, pepper, chives, lime juice, egg and 2 teaspoons salt. Process till smooth for about 45 seconds. Add ½ cup panko and process for another 15 seconds. Take out and form into 4 patties and roll into the remaining 1 cup panko. Place the patties on a parchment paper and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Heat a non-stick with the olive oil and butter on medium heat. Cook the shrimp patties for 4 minutes on each side or till cooked through.

Chili Lime Sauce

  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon chipotle powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Juice of one lime

Mix all ingredients well in a small bowl. Serve the shrimp cakes in ciabatta rolls with the lime sauce.