Lamb Kabobs with Arugula and Creamy Lemon Vinaigrette

May 28, 2011 at 8:52 am | Posted in Lamb, Light Meals | 32 Comments
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I’m sure hoping you’ll sit up and take notice and give this one a try very soon.  And preferably on a work week evening for a quick easy meal that just happens to end up on your plate as restaurant-quality delicious.   Now that’s a treat that deserves a standing ovation.

Continue Reading Lamb Kabobs with Arugula and Creamy Lemon Vinaigrette…

Asian Chicken Salad with Wasabi Dressing

June 26, 2010 at 2:56 pm | Posted in Chicken, Light Meals, Salad Dressings, Salads | 26 Comments
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This is just a quick post with another great big little summer salad recipe. 

I’ve been out of town this week drenching myself in alpine tranquility, lazy mountain lake strolls, wildflower meadows and campfired evenings on our first trip of the season to the high country.

Knowing the trip was going to be another fatstravaganza food event, I took it easy before we left and whipped up this delicious summer salad.

Melissa Rubel over at Food and Wine does it again with this interesting combination of  flavors. And if you like wasabi, you’re going to love this double hit. This salad starts out soothing you with a fresh cool crunchy base of poached chicken, pear, cucumber and bean sprouts and then kicks your butt with a topping of wasabi peas and a creamy spicy wasabi dressing. Yum…eee.

Let’s take a look:

Asian Chicken Salad With Wasabi Dressing

  1. 4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (1 3/4 pounds)
  2. 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  3. 1/4 cup rice vinegar
  4. 2 1/2 tablespoons wasabi powder (I’m not sure I actually used that much – you may want to start with 1 1/2 T. and taste test as you add a little more at a time)
  5. 1 1/2 teaspoons Asian sesame oil
  6. 1 1/2 tablespoons water
  7. Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  8. 2 heads Boston lettuce, torn into bite-size pieces (I had spinach that I needed to use)
  9. 1 large Asian pear—halved, cored and thinly sliced (I used a regular ol pear)
  10. 1/2 seedless cucumber, halved lengthwise and thinly sliced on the bias
  11. 2 scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced
  12. 1 cup mung bean sprouts
  13. 1/2 cup roasted wasabi peas, coarsely chopped

Directions

  1. In a large saucepan, cover the chicken breasts with water and bring to a gentle simmer. Cook over moderately low heat until the chicken is white throughout, about 12 minutes. Transfer the poached chicken breasts to a plate and let stand until cooled slightly, about 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the rice vinegar, wasabi powder, Asian sesame oil and 1 1/2 tablespoons of water and season with salt and pepper.
  3. In a large serving bowl, toss the lettuce with the Asian pear slices, cucumber, scallions, bean sprouts and 2/3 cup of the wasabi dressing. Slice the chicken breasts crosswise 1/4 inch thick and lay the slices on top of the salad. Spoon the remaining wasabi dressing over the chicken breasts, sprinkle with the chopped wasabi peas and serve at once.

Serves 4

Asian Chicken Salad with Wasabi Dressing..

It’s What’s For a Summer Dinner and Souper Sunday

Roasted Asparagus and Baby Artichokes

June 6, 2010 at 3:43 pm | Posted in Appetizers, Light Meals, Seafood, Vegetables | 29 Comments
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As you can imagine after my Memorial Day fat-stravaganza I’ve been preparing on the light side this week and spending a lot of time browsing the vegetable isles. 

I can’t tell you how many times I passed this beautiful and mysterious display of  “baby artichokes” wanting to bring them home and swaddle them in some sort of sauce, but honestly I didn’t have the foggiest idea how to prepare them.

By luck, I ran across an article and recipe for them in Bon Appetit Magazine and b-lined it up to Whole Foods to grab the next to last package of these adorable little veggies. 

Bon Appetit tells me that baby artichokes aren’t babies at all but are full-grown veggies that are found on the lower part of the plant.  They are more tender and easier to clean than their big brothers.

So let’s get started.

Bring large saucepan of salted water to boil. Fill large bowl with cold water and squeeze juice from one lemon into water. 

Working with one artichoke at a time, pull off all dark green outer leaves until only tender inner yellow leaves remain.

Cut off top tip of artichoke.

Cut off stem and trim around stem base of artichoke.

Cut artichoke lengthwise in half and immediately drop into lemon water to prevent discoloration. Repeat with remaining artichokes.

In the meantime, cut the tough ends off a one pound bunch of asparagus.

Drain artichokes then add to saucepan of boiling water.  Blanch 3 minutes.  Drain again.  Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Line 2 rimmed baking sheets with foil.  Place artichokes on one and asparagus on the other. Drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper and toss to coat. Roast asparagus for about 8 minutes and artichokes for about 15.

Aioli For Dipping Sauce

Adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine

  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
  • 1 garlic clove, pressed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
  • Whisk mayonnaise, oil, oregano, garlic, lemon juice, and lemon peel in small bowl to blend. Season aioli to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

With the aioli in the middle I arranged the artichokes, asparagus some sliced yellow bell pepper and some cold boiled shrimp.  This is a great aioli recipe and a fresh and delicious start to the week.

Roasted and Fresh Vegetables, Cold Boiled Shrimp with Aioli Sauce…

It’s Just What The Doctor Ordered After Memorial Day.

1 year ago:  Flank Steak with Onion Marmalade

http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2010/06/roasted_asparagus_and_baby_artichokes_with_lemon_oregano_aioli#ixzz0q0oN7tcV

A Great Little Find

May 11, 2010 at 3:58 pm | Posted in Lamb, Light Meals, Salad Dressings | 33 Comments
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I know this doesn’t look like much, but please believe me, it is “much”! 

Maybe I should have put a shiny fork across the salad bowl.  But not to fret, I’ll have plenty more photography chances with this one as I’ll definitely be serving it up over and over. 

I found this on Sunday while leisurely catching up on food magazine reading.   You see, I have this pile of food magazines next to the bed that can get quite unruly if I get behind on my reading. My husband calls it the “Rat’s Nest”. 

Currently in the Rat’s Nest, you’ll find Food and Wine, Bon Appetit, Saveur, Sunset, The Food Network Magazine…Oh, I guess you can count Wine Spectator too, since some of those wineries can put out some great little recipes here and there. 

I’ve been wanting to prepare lamb since Easter and haven’t done it, so this recipe with its interesting combination of lamb and cumin vinaigrette promptly received a sticky note to mark its location.

This salad is as texturally interesting as it is in flavor. Matchstick pieces of jicama, cucumber and carrot all with different levels of “crunch” make a fabulous combination as well as looking quite pretty. And tossed with that Cumin Vinaigrette…Lordy! Delicious. So delicious that you almost forget about those tender slices of grilled leg-0-lamb until they melt in your mouth with flavor. Did I mention easy? Especially easy using a mandolin for those matchsticks. Take a look:

I love Chef Sang Yoon’s comment for this creation:  “Lamb seasoned with cumin is very Indian, as well as Sichuan and Yunnan. But no one in Asia would serve lamb on a salad; that’s just me being Californian”.

You’ll find the recipe below, or hop on over to http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/grilled-lamb-salad-with-cumin-vinaigrette  to add it to your “favorites” over at foodandwine.com.  It’s really a more high tech method for marking recipes you want to try.  🙂

Grilled Lamb Salad With Cumin Vinaigrette, by Sang Yoon, February 2010 Issue, Food and Wine Magazine:

Ingredients

  1. One 1-pound piece boneless leg of lamb, about 3 inches thick
  2. 1/4 cup vegetable oil, plus more for rubbing
  3. 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  4. Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  5. 3 tablespoons white wine vinegar
  6. 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
  7. 1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
  8. Freshly ground white pepper
  9. 4 cups thinly sliced romaine lettuce
  10. One 6-ounce piece of jicama, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  11. 1 large carrot, cut into matchsticks
  12. 1 medium seedless cucumber, peeled and cut into matchsticks
  13. 1/2 cup shredded basil, plus 4 sprigs
  14. 2 red jalapeños, seeded and sliced
  15. 4 cilantro sprigs

Directions

  1. Light a grill. Rub the lamb with oil, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of the cumin and season with salt and black pepper. Let stand at room temperature for 10 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, in a bowl, combine the vinegar, honey, mustard and the remaining 1 teaspoon of cumin. Whisk in the 1/4 cup of oil and season with salt and white pepper.
  3. Grill the lamb over moderate heat, turning a few times, until charred and medium-rare, about 12 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a carving board; let rest for 5 minutes.
  4. In a large bowl, toss the romaine with the jicama, carrot, cucumber, shredded basil and jalapeños. Add the dressing and toss well. Transfer to plates. Thinly slice the lamb and arrange the slices on the salad. Garnish with the cilantro and basil sprigs and serve.

Grilled Lamb Salad With Cumin Vinaigrette,
It’s What’s For Dinner!

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