Tuesday, June 20, 2017

RECIPE: Spicy Radish Top Pesto

1 bunch Radish Tops, washed thoroughly

1 bunch Arugula

1 handful Basil leaves

1 handful Parsley leaves

1 handful Nuts – Pine Nuts, Walnuts, Almonds or Cashews, optional

1-2 cloves Garlic, smashed

3 tablespoons or more grated cheese – Parmesan, Pecorino, Grana Padano

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper


Wash all herbs thoroughly and place in food processor or blender. Herbs are relatively interchangeable, if you don’t have arugula or are using as the base of the salad, increase the amount of basil or parsley to compensate and adjust the flavor to your needs. Process on high until greens become coarsely chopped.

Toast nuts in pan or oven if using. Rough chop and place with greens. Add garlic as well. Process again on high until paste begins to form.

Begin with a ¼ cup of olive oil and drizzle slowly while processing on low.

Add grated cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Process on low until combined.

Drizzle more olive oil while processing on low until you achieve desired consistency.

Store in a mason jar in the refrigerator or freezer. Cover the top of the pesto with olive oil to prevent browning.

RECIPE: Braised Dandelion Greens

1 bunch Dandelion leaves
4 strips bacon (optional)
3-4 cloves garlic, crushed
Salt, pepper, red pepper

1. Cut bottom of stems and rinse greens thoroughly. Use a medium to large size pot for this recipe.

2. Dice approximately 4 strips of bacon and cook until beginning to brown. Drain grease from pot. Add 3-4 crushed garlic cloves and sautée until fragrant. If not using bacon, simply sautée crushed garlic cloves in extra virgin olive oil until fragrant.

3. Add greens to pot. Season with salt, pepper and red pepper.

4. Add approximately 4 cups of water, enough so that when the greens wilt they will be just submerged. Bring water to boil and reduce heat to low. Braise greens until tender, about 30 minutes.

4. Serve in bowls with broth alongside steak and other meats. The dandelion broth is highly nutritious and can be drunk as a soothing end to the meal or used as a stock when making soup.

RECIPE: Escarole with Kalamata Olives

1 head Escarole
4-6 anchovies packed in olive oil
2-3 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup or more Kalamata Olives, pitted and roughly chopped
Dry white wine/red wine/stock or a mixture
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Salt, Pepper, Red Pepper
Lemon and Parmesan (optional)

1. Tear escarole from head and rinse thoroughly.

2. Sautée 3-6 anchovies with extra virgin olive oil until anchovies begin to melt. Omit this step if desired.

3. Add sliced or chopped garlic and sautée until fragrant.

5. Add roughly chopped kalamata olives and sautée until fragrant.

4. Add escarole and season with salt, pepper and crushed red pepper.

5. Add 1/2 a cup or more of dry white wine, dry red wine, stock or a mixture of the two. Cook greens on low until soft.

6. Finish with a squeeze of lemon or Parmesan cheese and serve.

Alternate: Serve as bruschetta with grilled bread. Substitute cannellini beans for olives and serve with short pasta.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Butternut Squash and Goat CheeseMash

·         1 1/2 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into cubes
·         3 ounces goat cheese
·         2 tablespoons milk
·         1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, minced
·         Kosher salt and black pepper to taste
1.      Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
2.      Once boiling add in a big pinch of salt and the cubed butternut squash.
3.      Cook the butternut squash until soft, about 10-15 minutes depending how big your cubes are.
4.      Drain the water out of the pot and add in the goat cheese, milk, rosemary, salt and pepper.
5.      Mash with a potato masher or immersion blender/stick until desired mashed consistency is reached.

6.      Taste and add more salt and pepper if needed.

Apple Crumb Pie

·         Pie Crust
·         5 large apples, cored, peeled, and sliced into 1/4-inch slices1 (approx 8-10 cups total - use a variety for better flavor)
·         2 Tablespoons (30ml) lemon juice
·         1/4 cup (31g) all-purpose flour
·         1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
·         1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
·         1 and 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
·         1/2 cup (100g) granulated sugar
·         1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Crumble Topping
·         1/2 cup (100g) packed light or dark brown sugar
·         1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
·         3/4 cup (94g) all-purpose flour
·         3/4 cup (95g) chopped walnuts, such as Diamond of California
·         1/3 (75g) cup unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled

1.      Crust: Prepare or defrost crust.
2.      Make the filling: In a large bowl using a rubber spatula or wooden spoon, stir the apples, lemon juice, flour, cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, sugar, and vanilla extract together until thoroughly combined. Set filling aside as the oven preheats; this time allows the apples to begin letting off their juice.
3.      Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C).
4.      Roll out the chilled pie dough: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the discs of chilled dough. Turn the dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough into a 9x2 inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. Spoon the apple filling into the crust, leaving some of the liquid in the bowl-- don't want all that in the pie. Use a small paring knife to trim excess dough off the edges.
5.      Make the crumble topping: In a medium bowl, combine the brown sugar, cinnamon, flour, and walnuts. Using a rubber spatula, stir in the butter. The crumble topping will be thick and crumbly. Sprinkle over apples.
6.      Place the pie onto a large baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Keeping the pie in the oven, turn the temperature down to 375°F (190°C) and bake for an additional 30-35 minutes. After the first 20 minutes of bake time, I place a pie crust shield on top of the pie to prevent the edges from browning too quickly.
7.      Allow the pie to cool for 3 full hours at room temperature before serving. This time allows the filling to thicken up. Serve with vanilla ice cream if desired. Cover pie leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

8.      Make ahead tip/Freezing: This a great pie to make 1 day in advance-- after it cools, cover tightly and keep at room temperature. The pie crust dough can also be prepared ahead of time and stored in the refrigerator for up to 5 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Baked pie freezes well for up to 3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator and allow to come to room temperature before serving. Prepared filling can be frozen up to 3 months, thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.

Pear Ginger Pie

Pear-Ginger Pie


Yield: One 9-inch pie

Prep Time: 15 minutes, plus macerating and cooling time
Cook Time: 1 hour and 5 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour and 20 minutes, plus macerating and cooling time


3 pounds (6 large) Pears—peeled, quartered, cored and sliced crosswise ¼ inch thick
½ cup, plus 1 tablespoon, granulated sugar, divided
½ cup crystallized ginger, roughly chopped
¼ cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon kosher salt
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
1 flaky piecrust
1 egg, beaten


1.     In a large bowl, toss the pears with ½ cup of the granulated sugar, the crystallized ginger, cornstarch, orange juice, salt, cinnamon and ground ginger. Let sit for 30 minutes at room temperature.

2. Preheat the oven to 350º. Strain the pears of any excess liquid and transfer the liquid to a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Cook, stirring constantly, until the liquid has thickened, 2 to 3 minutes. Then add the liquid back to the bowl with the pears and toss to incorporate.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out 1 disk of the pie dough into a 12-inch circle. Transfer to a 9-inch pie tin pressing to fit the tin, leaving at least 1 inch of overhang on the sides. Spoon the filling into the tin over the dough, spreading to make an even layer.

4. Roll out the other disk of pie dough into a 10-inch square. Using a knife, cut eighteen ½-inch strips of dough. Take 3 strips of the dough and braid into 1 strand. Repeat this process until you have 6 braided strips. Place 3 strips horizontally across the pears, then pull alternating strips back and lay the additional strips perpendicular. Trim off the extra dough, then roll up the edge to make a rim around the dish. Using your fingers, crimp edges of the pie.

5. Brush the dough liberally with the beaten egg, then sprinkle the remaining 1 tablespoon of granulated sugar over top. Bake until the crust is golden brown and the filling has thickened, 1 hour to 1 hour and 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely before slicing and serving.


Total Time:
55 min
30 min
25 min

Yield:4 servings
3 heads celeriac, approximately 2 1/2 to 3 pounds
1 tablespoon olive oil
4 cloves garlic, peeled and sliced
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
5 cups water
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup heavy cream – I substituted Greek yogurt

Brush excess dirt off of the celeriac. Cut off the bottoms and tops, cut into quarters and peel. Rinse in cool water if there is any remaining dirt or debris. Cut into 1/2-inch thick dice.
Heat the olive oil in a 4-quart saucepan over low heat just until it shimmers. Add the celeriac, garlic, salt and pepper and cook, stirring frequently, just until it begins to soften, approximately 5 minutes. Increase the heat to medium-high and add the water. Bring to a boil and cook until the celeriac is tender and easily pierced with a fork, approximately 20 minutes. Drain the celeriac through a colander and return to the pot. Using a stick blender, puree until no lumps are present, approximately 1 minute. Place the butter and heavy cream into a microwave proof bowl and heat just until the butter is melted, approximately 45 seconds. Add the cream and butter and continue to puree with the stick blender for another minute. Serve warm.