09 Dec Cream of Mushroom Soup

From Sheila Lukins, USA Cookbook. Serves 6.

Ingredients:

  • 2 pounds white mushrooms, stems trimmed off (shiitake mushrooms are great)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 large onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
  • Pinch of ground nutmeg
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • 4 1/2 cups defatted chicken broth, preferably homemade
  • 1/2 cup heavy (or whipping) cream
  • 2 tablespoons snipped fresh chives, for garnish

Directions:

  1. Wipe the mushrooms caps clean with a damp paper towel. Slice mushrooms and set them aside.
  2. Heat oil and butter in a large, heavy pot over low heat. Add onion and cook until wilted, stirring occasionally (10-12 minutes). Add garlic and cook 2 more minutes.
  3. Add mushrooms and cook, uncovered, stirring frequently for 15 minutes. Season with thyme, nutmeg, salt, and pepper.
  4. Add chicken broth and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes. Remove pot from heat and let cool to room temperature.
  5. Puree the soup, in batches, in a food processor or blender until smooth, then add the cream gradually. Mix well. Return the soup to the pot and adjust the seasonings to taste.
  6. Before serving, heat the soup over very low heat (do not boil). Garnish with chives and serve piping hot.
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09 Nov Fall Butternut Squash Soup

From Chef Jed Demler

Soup Ingredients:

  • 1 large (about 3 lb.) butternut squash
  • 1 large bulb shallot (1/4 cup to 1/2 cup diced)
  • 6 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon Allspice
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter
  • 4 cups chicken stock

Garnish Ingredients:

  • Toasted pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 cup whipped cream
  • Chili oil (optional)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Slice squash lengthwise and scoop out seeds. Drizzle with olive oil, salt, and pepper. Roast squash flesh side down for 40 minutes or until tender. Let cool slightly and scoop out flesh and discard tough peel. Set squash aside.
  2. In a heavy bottom pot, on medium high heat, sauté shallots until translucent. Add garlic and stir; allow to get fragrant but not brown. Add squash, all spice, salt, pepper, maple syrup, and chicken stock. Stir to combine and simmer, letting the flavors meld.
  3. Using an immersion or standard blender, blend all ingredients until smooth consistency. If soup is too thick, add chicken stock or water to desired consistency. Finally, blend in 2-3 tablespoons of whole butter for richness.
  4. Garnish with a dollop of whipped cream, a few pumpkin seeds, and a drizzle of chili oil.
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15 Sep Tarragon Shrimp Scampi

From Martha Stewart, Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and finely minced
  • 2 small onions, peeled and coarsely grated
  • 1 teaspoon course salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 small bunch fresh tarragon, finely chopped
  • 1 1/2 pounds large shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large skillet and sauce garlic and onions with salt and pepper over medium-low heat for 3 minutes. Add tarragon and cook for 1 minute. Do not let the mixture brown. Remove from heat and let cool.
  2. Combine shrimp with onion mixture and lemon juice in a large bowl, stirring well. Cover and let stand 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat broiler to high. Arrange shrimp in a large oven-proof skillet. Pour any remaining marinade over shrimp. Broil 5 minutes or until shrimp are pink and topping is browned. Serve immediately.
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15 Sep Spicy Pumpkin Soup

Ingredients:

  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 2 medium yellow onions, chopped
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/8-1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 2 teaspoons curry powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Pinch ground cayenne pepper (optional)
  • 3 (15 oz.) cans pumpkin or 6 cups chopped roasted pumpkin*
  • 5 cups chicken broth (or vegetable broth for vegetarian option)
  • 2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream

* To make pumpkin puree, cut a sugar pumpkin in half, scoop out the seeds and stringy stuff, and lie face down on a tin foil-lined baking pan. Bake at 350 degrees until soft, about 45 minutes to an hour. Cool, scoop out flesh. Freeze whatever you don’t use for future use.

Directions: 

  1. Melt butter in a 4-quart saucepan over medium-high heat. Add onions and garlic and cook, stirring often, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add spices and stir for a minute more.
  2. Add pumpkin and 5 cups chicken broth; blend well. Bring to a boil and reduce heat, then simmer for 10-15 minutes. Transfer soup in batches to a blender or food processor. Cover tightly and blend until smooth. Return soup to saucepan.
  3. With the soup on low heat, add brown sugar and mix. Slowly add milk while stirring to incorporate. Add cream. Adjust seasonings to taste. If a little too spicy, add more cream to cool it down. You might want to add a teaspoon of salt.
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31 Aug Peach Pie & Cobbler

Cobbler Crust Ingredients:

  • 2 1/2 cups flour
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup ice water

Peach Filling Ingredients:

  • 3 pounds peaches
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 3/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 stick butter

Filling Directions:

  1. Slice the peaches and combine with the lemon and orange juice to prevent discoloration.
  2. In a bowl, combine the sugar, nutmeg, cinnamon, and cornstarch.
  3. Put peaches and butter in a non-aluminum pan. Heat until butter is melted, then stir in the sugar mixture. Remove from heat.

Cobbler Directions:

  1. Roll half of dough into 1/4″ thickness. Cut into 1/2″ wide strips.
  2. Pour filling into pan and cover top with lattice-woven strips. Sprinkle with sugar then melted butter.
  3. Bake at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes and then at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until crust is light brown and cobbler is bubbly.

Makes 7 pounds of cobbles (10-12 servings).

Note: this same filling can be used to make pie. You can use a full crust or the lattice-woven strip crust.

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25 Aug Chicken Salad With Peas, Feta And Mint

By Patricia Wells, Serves 4

Lemon-Chive Dressing Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 cup light cream or half & half
  • 1/3 cup finely minced fresh chives

Salad Ingredients:

  • 1 cup chilled peas, blanched and refreshed
  • 3 small spring onions, cut into thin rounds
  • 3 oz. Greek feta cheese, crumbled
  • 1/4 cup mint leaves, cut into chiffonade
  • 3 cups shredded chicken or turkey
  • 8 oz. cherry tomatoes
  • 1 avocado, peeled and thinly sliced
  • 2 baby romaine heads, thickly shredded
  • 4 radishes, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped chives

Directions:

  1. To make the dressing, combine the lemon juice and salt in a small jar. Shake to dissolve the salt. Add the cream and chives. Shake to blend. Taste for seasoning.
  2. In a large, shallow bowl, combine all the salad ingredients. Toss with just enough dressing to evenly coat the ingredients. Arrange on four large dinner plates.
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18 Aug Bill’s Gumbo

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb. okra, sliced
  • 8 slices of bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 1 green pepper, chopped
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2-3 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 2 28 oz. cans tomatoes (break up whole ones)
  • 1 lb. shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/2 lb. firm white fish (e.g. cod or snapper), cut up
  • 1/2 lb. lump crab meat

Directions:

  1. Fry bacon until crisp. Remove and drain, then crumble.
  2. Transfer 2 tablespoons rendered fat into pot or dutch oven.
  3. Add vegetables – okra, onion, and bell pepper – and saute until tender.
  4. Add tomatoes and crumbled bacon.
  5. Add 1 teaspoon of file for thickening.
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10 Aug Autumn Pear Salad

Ingredients:

  • 3-4 stalks celery heart
  • 3 ounces imported parmesan cheese
  • Small handful walnut halves
  • 3 large, ripe but firm pears
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Lemon juice
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Radicchio leaves or other red or bronze-colored lettuce leaves

Directions:

  1. Remove strings from celery and cut into thin diagonal slices. Reserve a few celery leaves.
  2. Cut parmesan cheese into paper-thin slivers.
  3. Coarsely chop walnuts.
  4. Core and thickly slice pears. If not using immediately, toss pears with a little lemon juice to prevent discoloration.
  5. Place celery, cheese, walnuts, and pears into a bowl. Drizzle with a little olive oil and lemon juice to taste. Season with salt and pepper and toss very gently.
  6. Line serving platter with radicchio leaves and gently arrange salad on top. Garnish with reserved celery leaves.
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04 Aug Eggs Poached On Sweet Peppers & Onions

From Edibles Magazine Summer 2015, Serves 4

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 2 sweet red peppers, sliced
  • 2 medium onions, sliced
  • 2 large tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil or 1 teaspoon dried
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley for garnish

Directions:

  1. In a large skillet with a fitted lid, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the peppers and onions and cook until the peppers are almost soft, about 8 minutes. Add the tomatoes and basil and cook until all the vegetables are soft, about 10 minutes. Add salt to taste.
  2. With the back of a spoon, create 8 indentations in the vegetables. Carefully crack the eggs in the indentations. Don’t let the eggs touch the bare bottom of the pan or the sides or they will burn or stick. Reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan, and simmer until the whites of the eggs are set, 6-8 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with the parmesan and parsley. Serve promptly.
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01 Aug Farm Fritters with Spicy Green Goddess

By Chef Jed Demler, Savoureux Catering

Fritters Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 2 cups shredded zucchini, squash, or corn off the cob
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 tablespoons minced fresh herbs (chives, dill, parsley)
  • Vegetable oil for cooking

Green Goddess Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk
  • 3 tablespoons chopped chives
  • 3 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1 tablespoon chopped tarragon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, chopped until paste
  • Salt and pepper

Fritters Directions:

  1. Heat 2 inches of vegetable oil in a large skillet to 350 degrees.
  2. Lightly beat the egg and add to the milk. Stir together the flour, spices, and baking powder. Add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients and stir until smooth. Fold in vegetables and herbs.
  3. Drop spoonfuls into hot grease, making sure not to overcrowd the pan (overcrowding brings the temperature of the oil down drastically and will affect the texture of your fritters). When edges tuen golden brown, flip (flipping only once). The entire cooking process should take 90 seconds to 2 minutes!
  4. Remove from oil and immediately toss with salt.

Green Goddess Directions:

  1. Super easy! Blend all ingredients in a blender until very smooth.
  2. Season with salt and pepper and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before use (allowing flavors to meld).
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