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Clean Eats: Romesco for the boys

Clean Eats: Romesco for the boys

Sauces, spreads, concoctions, they really make the world go round. The throw it together mentality to feed the people with ease, that is when I feel like my highest self.

While on holiday, the boys of the house were on target for a day of rum and revelry, perfect for a mid afternoon Italian snack of roasted red pepper dip poolside (after dressed up chicken hot dogs naturally!)

Romesco is a dip or spread of roasted red pepper, almonds, tomato, garlic and chili that I could eat on almost anything.  I remember so clearly a perfect Romesco by talented chef Christian Ragano alongside cornmeal dusted calamari at the Hyatt at Grand Central.  A spanish spin on the traditional calamari with marinara.

Serve this with grilled sourdough bread, chips, calamari, veggies, you name it.

Romesco

2 each Large Red Peppers

2 Tbsp Tomato Paste

1/4 cup Olive Oil

3 ounces Raw Almonds

2 Slices Sourdough Bread (1-1.5 cups of bread)

1/2 tsp Red Pepper Flake

1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1 clove, Garlic

1 tsp Sea Salt

1/2 tsp Paprika

2 Tbsp  Red Wine Vinegar

1. Place red peppers underneath the broiler or on the gass stovetop.

2. Allow to blister and blacken on each side.

3. Remove red peppers and place on the counter to cool slightly before removing blackened skin, seeds and green top. (You can place the peppers in a plastic ziplock at this point to allow steam to remove the blistered skin)

4. In a dry skilled place almonds and torn pieces of bread. Allow to toast on low until the bread is golden and the almonds are slightly toasted.

5. Add garlic clove towards the end of toasting to allow some of the fresh garlic flavor to cook off.

6. Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse to combine.

7. Adjust salt and vinegar to taste.

Dirty Desserts: The Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Dirty Desserts: The Chocolate Chunk Cookie

Crispy, chewy, great with ice cream in the center, great on their own, great a day old, great left in the fridge as dough and freshly baked. Just Great.

 

Not So Basic Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Makes....A LOT of Cookies ! (approximately 40)

452 grams (1 Pound) Unsalted Organic Butter (quality butter will result in a more craveable cookie)

500 grams Organic Granulated Cane Sugar

400 grams Organic Light Brown Sugar

4 each Large Organic Eggs

1 Tablespoon Vanilla Extract (High Quality!)

905 grams All Purpose Flour

15 grams Baking Soda (not baking powder!)

7 grams Himalayan Pink Salt

700 grams Dark Chocolate Chunks (a combination of 60% and 70%)

1. Chop butter straight from the fridge into 1/2 inch chunks.

2. In a bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine butter and sugars. Paddle butter on low to combine.

3. Once butter is combined, turn the mixer to high speed and paddle to cream for 7 minutes. Set a timer!

4. Add vanilla in one shot. Scrape bowl.

5. Add two eggs to mixer and scrape down after combining well. Add remaining eggs and scrape down after paddling.

6. Sift together baking soda, flour and salt two times.  Add dries to mixer and paddle to combine well, scraping down.

7. Add chocolate chunks (1/2 inch if chopping, if using Guittard baking wafers leave whole)

At this point you can store this dough in the fridge or bake immediately.

To Bake:

Preheat oven to 325F convection.

1. Cut 1/4 cup cubes of dough (or scoop)

2. Roll into balls and flatten slightly

3. Bake for 10-12 minutes until golden around the edges and just cooked trhough in the center.

4. Cool and fill with ice cream or serve with milk.

Clean Eats: Low Roasted Salmon

Clean Eats: Low Roasted Salmon

This isn't slow salmon, it's low salmon. Dressed with fresh herbs and tender every time. Blackenedsalmon has had its comeback with the everything in a bowl mentality, so I invite you to take a bowl break and revisit tender salmon.  Great with a side of greens and baby potatoes.

Low Roasted Salmon

Oven: 250F

1 Large Salmon Half (about 1.5 pounds) (de-boned)

1 bunch Rosemary (5 sprigs)

1/2 cup Olive Oil

1 small Red Onion

1 tsp Sea Salt

1 tsp Black Pepper

2 cloves Garlic

1 bunch Mint (1 large handful of leaves)

1 Tbsp Red Wine Vinegar

1 each Lemon

1. Place salmon on a foil or parchment lined sheet tray skin side down.

2. Combine rosemary, 1/3 of the onion, 1 clove of garlic, salt and pepper in a kitchen-aid food processor.

3. Blend to process. Spread evenly and generously over the salmon.

4. At this point you can place the salmon in the fridge for later or allow it to sit on the counter for 20 minutes.

5. Before cooking, allow the salmon to sit out for 20 minutes. Let oven preheat to 250F

6. Thinly slice the remaining onion and lay slices on top of the salmon.

7. Thinly slice half of the lemon and place on top of the salmon.

8. Place the salmon in the oven and allow to roast for 30 minutes until it reaches 140F.

Meanwhile (Make the Mint Sauce)

9. Make a quick mint sauce by rinsing out the food processor and combining the mint leaves, 1 garlic clove, red wine vinegar and remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper if desired

10. When the salmon comes out of the oven dress it with dollops of mint sauce and serve with lemon wedges.

 

 

Dirty Desserts: Dairy Free Devils and Holy No Cow Fudge Frosting

Dirty Desserts: Dairy Free Devils and Holy No Cow Fudge Frosting

I do not do substitutions unless it is for a legitimate allergy.  What I mean is, I invest the majority share of my energy into making the real thing unless duty calls for a different version.  My favorite female cousin (I really only have one!) is worthwhile to put some brainpower into delicious treats because she is dairy free and also has a size-able sweet tooth.  This lady is always a great audience for treats. 

The cake: Classic Devils.  Super moist, adjusted slightly with a coconut yogurt and almond milk blend to replace buttermilk. Made with baking powder instead of soda as it is less acidic than it's buttermilk cousin.


The frosting: Holy No Cow Chocolate Frosting.  I can't even. Please make this frosting with a hint of peanut butter.  Simple stuff: Coconut Oil, Bittersweet Chocolate, Himalayan Salt, Peanut Butter. That's it!

 

Dairy Free Devil's Cake

Makes one half sheet tray of cake

200 grams Pasture Raised Eggs Room Temperature

150 grams Extra Virgin Olive Oil

150 grams Vegetable or other neutral Oil

300 grams Cane Sugar

300 grams Light Brown Sugar

100 grams Almond Milk, unsweetened

125 grams Coconut Yogurt, unsweetened 

150 grams Hot Water

20 grams Vanilla Extract

84 grams Cocoa Brut Powder (dark, non alkalized)

340 grams All Purpose Unbleached FLour

10 grams Baking Powder

3 grams Himalayan Sea Salt

1.  In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, combine eggs and sugars.

2. Whip on high speed for 5 minutes.  Stream in oils and continue whipping for 4 minutes.

3. Meanwhile, whisk cocoa powder with hot water and vanilla.

4. Whisk together yogurt and almond milk, whisk in cocoa mixture.

5. Sift together flour, baking powder and salt two times.

6. With the mixutre running on medium low, stream in 1/3 of the wet mixuture, scraping the sides and bottom.

7. Add 1/3 of the dry mixture, scraping down the sides and bottom of the bowl.

8. Alternating the remaining wet and dry ingredients in 1/3 increments, add to the egg mixture scraping down in between each addition.

9. Pour the batter onto a silpat lined half sheet tray spraying with non-stick spray.

10. Bake at 350F or 325f convections for approximately 25-30 minutes. Until the cake is cooked through and springs back to the touch.

11. Allow the cake to cool and then invert onto a board.  Cut into thirds for a rectangular 3 layer cake, into circles for a round cake or make a single cake sheet.

 

Holy NO COW Fudge Frosting

16 ounces Bittersweet Chocolate 70%

14 ounces Coconut Oil (natural butter flavored is a good idea here!)

1/4 plus 1 Tbsp cup Smooth Creamy Peanut Butter

1/2 tsp Himalayan Pink Salt.

1. Melt chocolate gently.

2. Place in a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment.

3. Slightly warm the coconut oil and stir until it is creamy and smooth.

4. Add coconut oil to chocolate and whip on high.

5. Add peanut butter to chocolate and whip to emulsify.

6. If the mixture is completely liquid place in fridge to cool slightly stirring the sides that begin to harden.

7. When the mixture is slightly cooled, scrape the sides and whip on high speed.

8. Add salt and whip to combine.

**This frosting is easy yet finicky as it cannot be hot and it cannot be too cold. Room temperature, 65F is a perfect.  If your oven is on and you are cooking, the frosting might start to re-melt again.  If you forget about the frosting in the fridge, simply warm it slightly to re-whip.

Frost a completely cooled three-layer cake and decorate with shaved chocolate, toasted coconut, roasted peanuts, hazelnuts, or sprinkles.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Clean Eats: The Healing Kit

Clean Eats: The Healing Kit

What is a healing kit?  This version is focused on your desk lunch or your pantry.  This is your go to for a simple salad dressing, anti-inflammatory salt blend (hey turmeric), rosemary infused oil for focus, oregano oil to be your ultimate antimicrobial drizzle on any pre prepped food, lemons because your dressing, water, hot water and life loves them, walnuts and pepitas for that omega boost and satisfying crunch and limes to switch it up.

 

This healing kit can live in your pantry or at your desk and it is everything!  No longer will any meal or moment be boring. 

I find myself using the oil for all of my meals, grabbing a lemon on the regular, using the turmeric salt for my morning eggs...the list goes on.

Make your healing kit at Furthermore.com!

 

 

Clean Eats: Noosh Wrap

Clean Eats: Noosh Wrap

What a glorious wrap. I love the texture, the flavor and the simplicity.  
 

Japanese eggplant is less bitter than Italian eggplants which is perfect for this straightforward preparation. Essentially you score and roast eggplant, scoop out the meat and create a fantastic filing.  By refilling the eggplant and wrapping it in collards, you have a rockstar of a wrap.

Stuffed Eggplant Noosh Wrap

1 each Japanese Eggplant

1 cup Cooked Quinoa

1 Tbsp Hummus

1 Tbsp Harissa Paste

2 Tbsp Chopped Mint

Salt/Pepper

1 each Summer Squash, sliced into disks

1/2 each Small Red Onion, diced

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

4 each small to medium Collard Leaves

1. Cut the eggplant in half lengthwise. Score the flesh of the eggplant in a cross hash.

2. Place eggplant on a baking sheet cut side up.

3. Place squash next to eggplant.

4. Sprinkle squash with diced red onion. Drizzle vegetables with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.

5. Roast vegetables at 450F, until onions are crispy and brown, eggplant is roasted through and squash is golden and roasted well.

6. Remove squash and onions using an offset spatula. Place in a bowl with quinoa.

7. Using a spoon, scoop out flesh of eggplant, being mindful to keep the shell intact.

8. Combine eggplant meat, quinoa, mint, hummus, squash, onions and harissa in a bowl. Mix well.

9. Scoop filling back into eggplant shells, creating a mound with each half.

10. Place two small collars on the counter and place eggplant on top.

11. Place two more small collards on top of filling.

12. Wrap entire eggplant with collars in parchment paper tightly to secure. 

13. This can be refrigerated but is best served at room temperature.

Dirty Desserts: Perfect and Pure Panna Cotta

Dirty Desserts: Perfect and Pure Panna Cotta

You might think, oh the humble panna cotta, I will pass.   I dare you to not pass and make this simple, ultra silky and soft panna cotta laced with orange and honey.

Your summer night just got seductive.

Panna Cotta

Makes 15

20 ounces Whole Milk

15 ounces Heavy Cream

8 ounces Fresh Orange Juice

1 tsp Orange Zest

6 ounces Honey

2 ounces Sugar

Pinch Salt

10 grams Powdered Gelatin

1.     Warm milk, cream, orange juice, zest, honey, sugar and salt until tepid.

2.     Whisk in gelatin. Blend using an immersion blender completely submerged.

3.     Portion into small glass bowls or tea cups (3.5 ounces each)

4.     Individually wrap and allow to chill in fridge overnight.

This panna cotta does not un-mold. Serve it right out of the tea cup.

 

 

 

 

Clean Eats- Blistered Red Potatoes and Chimichurri

Clean Eats- Blistered Red Potatoes and Chimichurri

This is a classic chimichurri, just another regional answer to natural condiments full of flavor.

 

 Barbecue sauce or anything with that umami flavor is generally a crowd pleaser, however I truly enjoy making herb packed concoctions that can change your pork chop, potato and or farro game and leave my diners feeling fantastic.

  Gremolata, pesto, gormeh sabzi are all dishes or condiments that call for a bounty of green flat leaf herbs: nature's medicine.  Chumichurri is simple yet powerful: cilantro, flat leaf parsley, garlic, lemon juice and lemon zest, pomegranate red wine vinegar, salt, pepper and cumin are all brought together with sharp extra virgin olive oil.  Yum!

 

The Potatoes

I learned this potato trick from my Uncle and prefer to do it with beautiful red potatoes. Bring halved red potatoes to a boil in cold water and cook until tender.  Drain and drizzle with a good quality olive oil.  Lay the potatoes cut side up on a flat sheet tray and place under a broiler for ten minutes until blistered, brown and beautiful.  Toss with, or place dollops of fresh and flavorful chimichurri sauce and you are sure to have a side dish that will be remembered by all. 

Chimichurrri

1 bunch Flat Leaf Parsley

1 bunch Cilantro

3 each Garlic Cloves

Zest +Juice of 1 lemon

1/3 cup Pomegranate Red Wine Vinegar

1 tsp Sea Salt

1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1/4 tsp Ground Cumin

1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

2 each Scallions

1/2 tsp Crushed Red Pepper Flake

1. Wash and spin dry herbs.  Pick leaves from parsley and cilantro, discard stems.

2. Mince whites of scallions and rough chop greens steams.

3. Place all above ingredients in a food processor. Pulse until smooth.

Adjust seasoning to taste. 

4. Allow mixture to sit at room temperature for 30 minutes to an hour where flavors will merry.

Serve with blistered red potatoes, grilled pork chops, grilled zucchini, swordfish and the like.

Clean Eats: Barbecue Portobello Tacos

Clean Eats: Barbecue Portobello Tacos

So...not meaty.  Smoked paprika with a little sweet is magic in the making. I first learned this trick when I saw a chef sprinkling shoestring fries with smoked paprika, granulated sugar and salt. Highly addictive and delicious.


I save sweets for my dirty desserts moments and have opted to use a sprinkling of coconut sugar and grated carrots for these barbecue portobello tacos.  You can always use a bit of maple syrup or brown sugar if you please if you do not have coconut sugar.  If you are really going au naturel, blend up a few dates with some hot water to add.

Portobello Tacos

6 each taco shells (corn, whole wheat, rice flour, almond meal)

4 each Large Portobello Caps

1 Tbsp Coconut Sugar

1 small can, Chopped Tomatoes

1 Tbsp Smoked Paprika

1/2 tsp Cumin

1/2 cup Cilantro, Chopped

4 Carrots, grated

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

3 Cloves Garlic, minced

1 tsp Salt

1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1/3 cup Red Onion, diced

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

Juice of 1 Lime

1/2 to 1 cup Crumbled Cojita cheese (feta is great too!)

1. In a large flat bottomed skillet, sweat red onion with garlic in 1 TBSP olive oil.

2. Clean mushrooms and slice into 1/2 inch strips.

3. In a large bowl combine mushrooms with salt, pepper, paprika, cumin and olive oil, massage to coat mushrooms.

4. Turn skillet to high and add mushrooms.

5. Sautee for 4 minutes and then add grated carrots.

6. Add chopped tomatoes and simmer until mushrooms are tender.

6. Add juice of lime and cilantro.

7. Sprinkle skilled with cheese and place under broiler to melt.

8. Spoon mixture into taco shells or soft tacos and enjoy!

*Taco Shell Trick: Place soft shells on the oven rack, draped to create a shell like shape.

Toast in the oven for 4 minutes and remove carefully, allowing shell to crisp as it cools.

 

Clean Eats: Blackberry Corn and Mint Salsa with Swordfish

Clean Eats: Blackberry Corn and Mint Salsa with Swordfish

Fresh is in, as it is almost summer and I am as excited about food as I am bored with the same old dish and desk lunch.  I was in Watch Hill Rhode Island last week, feeling like I was in heaven because seaside is where I belong.  The simply grilled swordfish reminded me that this is on of my favorite proteins to sear and enjoy alongside simple condiments.

This raw (or pan roasted) corn salsa is so delicious with fresh mint and blackberries.  Serve with a the swordfish on a bed of arugula (or just alone) and dinner is served.

Blackberry Corn Salsa

1 ear of corn

1 pint blackberries

1 cup mint leaves

2 Tbsp Olive Oil

Salt 

Pepper

2 Tbsp Chopped Red Onion (optional)

2 Limes

1. Cut kernels off corn by standing the cob upright and shaving off with a knife.

2. Cut blackberries in half

3. Roughly chop mint leaves and add to corn and blackberries.

4. Add the juice of one lime, olive oil, red onion and salt and pepper to taste.

 

Swordfish

1. Season swordfish with salt and pepper.

2. Sear swordfish for 4 minutes on each side of a medium high cast iron pan with olive oil.

3. Allow swordfish to sit on a cutting board for 4 minutes to rest.

4. Zest 1/2 lime onto swordfish and squeeze the juice of the lime on the fish.

5. Slice fish into 1/4 inch pieces. 

Serve swordfish with salsa and enjoy!

Clean Eats: Zucchini Kuku

Clean Eats: Zucchini Kuku

I loved this dish even before I made it !  I knew that a veggie packed egg tart off sorts, meant to be batch made so that you have meals and snacks for the week was the next move away from containers of grain bowl ingredients in my fridge.  You can easily enjoy this warm or cold, wrapped in a lavash with yogurt and feta with extra herbs or on top of a simple salad. Versatile and so so delicious,  I promise you will love this dish every which way and will be revved up to experiment with the fillings while you await alternate versions from me! 

side note: I have never spiraledized a zucchini and the turmeric is meant to be in this recipe, not just because it's cool.

Zucchini Kuku

Adapted from JOON

1.2 to 1.5 pounds Zucchini (or any summer squash type that you enjoy)

1 large Vidalia Onion

1 large Yellow Onion

4 cloves Garlic

1.5 tsp Turmeric

8 Eggs

1/2 tsp Black Pepper

1 tsp Sea Salt

1 Cup Mint Leaves

1/2 Cup Basil Leaves

1.5 Tbsp Rice Flour

1/2 tsp Baking Powder

1. In a large pot or skillet, heat 2 Tbsp olive oil or coconut oil and sautee onions, zucchini and garlic until soft, about 15 minutes.

*this is A LOT of veggies- that is okay

2. Strain veggies over a colander, save the juice for a soup etc.

3. Chop the mint fine and whisk together the eggs with mint, turmeric, salt and pepper. 

4. Whisk in the rice flour mixed with the baking powder.

5. Fold in the cooled strained veggies.

6. In a case iron skillet heat 2 Tbsp oil.

7. Pour egg mixture into skillet on medium. Allow the bottom to begin to cook.

8. Place skillet in a 475F oven for 10 minutes to finish cooking.

Serve with flatbread (lavash), Basil Leaves, Yogurt and Feta

Noosh E Joon!

Clean Eats: Blistered Tomato and Lemon Pesto Pasta

Clean Eats: Blistered Tomato and Lemon Pesto Pasta

Fresh.  Just as the seasons start to truly explode and you are in a daily dilema of hot or ice coffee.

Blistered cherry tomatoes are dead simple and oh so satisfying when tossed with soft and silky fresh pasta.  I love dried pasta generally, however there are applications for fresh pasta that I can't live without.  (not to mention fresh pasta cooks in three minutes)

Sure, you can pull up any pesto recipe from this site or buy a high quality.  This pesto below is heavy on the lemon zest and herbs with pecorino.  The goal is to have a pasta laced with blistered tomatoes with their juice in extra virgin olive oil alongside a light toss of fresh pesto.

Lemon Pesto

Zest of 2 Lemons

Juice of 1 Lemon

3 Garlic Cloves, minced

2 cups Basil Leaves

1/2 cup Parsley Leaves

1/2 cup mint leaves

1/3 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1 tsp Sea Salt

1/2 tsp Pepper

1/3 cup Grated Pecorino Romano

1. On a large cutting board pile herbs, lemon zest and garlic together.

2. Chop until fine

3. Whisk together herbs with lemon juice, salt, pepper and olive oil.

4. Stir in cheese and set aside.

 

Blistered Cherry Tomatoes

1 Box Cherry Tomatoes, halved

1/2 cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1/4 tsp Salt

1/4 tsp Black Pepper

1. Heat olive oil in a flat bottomed skilled until it ripples (is hot but not smoking)

2. Carefully add cherry tomatoes to hot oil off of the heat.

3. Toss on heat until tomatoes blister. 

4. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

 

To Prepare

1 Box Fresh Fettuccine

1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

2. Season with salt and cook pasta for 3 minutes (according to directions)

3. Drain pasta and immediately toss hot pasta with fresh chopped pesto.

4. Add tomatoes with all of the oil and juice to the pasta and toss gently to combine.

5. Serve with pine nuts sprinkled on top.

 

Clean Eats: My Perfect Roasted Chicken

Clean Eats: My Perfect Roasted Chicken

There are a lot of recipes out there for roasted chicken.  When done well, roasted chicken is the juicy and nourishing  ultimate simple Sunday supper.  When overcooked its everything that is not craveable.  Everyone has a spin on roasted chicken.  My traditional bird has a bit of herbed goat cheese slipped under the skin before roasting.  This one gets a wee bit fancier as it is stuffed with tarragon and black trumpet mushrooms, finished with sweet of-the-season muscat grapes.

Oh yes, this is a delicious meal.

 

I like to cook my roasted chicken breast side down.  Personally, I think the bird stays juicier. I have also always been inclined to cook my bird at 475F but now opt for 460F as to not smoke out my house from the sizzling drippings.

What else?  Buy a good bird. Pasture raised, local, fresh.  When it comes to poultry and any other meat or fish for that matter, if you are going to eat it then buy it consciously.  Enjoy it as it will taste that much better than the chopped chicken in your lunchtime salad bowl!

Roasted Chicken

1 Each Pasture Raised CHcien ** a great weight is between 3.25 and just under 4 pounds.

2 Cups Black Trumpet Mushrooms

1 bunch Tarragon

1 Cup Muscat Grapes.

Garlic Cloves (optional)

1 large carrot

Salt/Pepper/Olive Oil

1. Wash the mushrooms by placing them in a water bath to let the dirt fall to the bottom. Skim off the mushrooms and dry them on a towel.

2. Cut the carrot into small sticks to act as an oven rack on the bottom of the roasting pan.

3. Drizzle carrots with a small amount of olive oil and place in the bottom of your roasting pan.

4. On your board, place the chicken breast side up. Loosen the skin on the bird and place mushrooms under the skin.  Season the skin with salt and pepper and rub with olive oil, flip over.

5. Loosen the skin on the back side of the bird and stuff with remaining mushrooms. Season with olive oil (rub) and salt and pepper.

6. Place bunch of tarragon inside the cavity of the bird (* I hope you removed the giblets!) and add garlic cloves if you desire.

7. Place bird breast side down on top of the carrot sticks.

8. Place in 460F oven and set a timer for 45 minutes.

9. At 45 minutes, quickly place the grapes on top of the bird. (They will all fall over to the side. and that is okay)

10. Allow to roast for 10 minutes more.

*If my chicken is 3.25 pounds I roast it for 50 minutes. If it is just under 4 pounds it definitely goes for the total 55 minutes.

11. Remove the bird from the oven and allow to rest for 10 minutes. 

12. Remove the chicken breasts and slices to serve. Remove the legs and thighs and serve whole.

13. Spoon any fallen mushrooms and grapes over the cut chicken breast to serve.

 

 

 

Dirty Desserts: Labneh Tart (read: better than cheesecake)

Dirty Desserts: Labneh Tart (read: better than cheesecake)

Labneh, a yogurt cheese that is oh so rich tangy and delicious.  Where do you find labneh?  Well, a bird told me that labneh was recently spotted at her local @eataly.  Labneh also pops up in middle eastern markets.  How about making your own? In a cinch!  Grab a 16 ounce container of your favorite whole milk greek yogurt.  I am a fan of: Chobani, Fage and Siggis.  I will give you some simple directions below on how to strain your favorite yogurt and have labeh by morning.

The tart crust is made using a famous Persian cookie called, nan-e nokhodchi.  You may have spotted the recipe on my newsletter from March.  If you didn't, then just sign up for my newsletter here to get this fantastic recipe for a chickpea cookie that acts as an incredible crust on this creamy yet light tart.


What else?  This labneh tart on a cardamom and chickpea crust (laced with rosewater) is lightened with a bit of vanilla bean whipped cream and fresh muscat grapes are folded in.  Muscat grapes are a juicy and sweet grape varietal that have a some elderflower notes to them (St. Germain anyone?) Sprinkle with freshly chopped bright green pistachios and you have a stunner dessert perfect for late Saturday evening dinner party in spring.

Labneh

12 ounces Whole Milk Greek Yogurt

1 cold brew coffee bag OR Cheesecloth

1. Place yogurt in cheesecloth or cold brew coffee bag (found at Whole Foods and also can be used for almond milk) 

2. Hang the yogurt at room temperature for 2 hours over a bowl to catch the yogurt whey.

3. Transfer the hanging yogurt to the fridge ( I sometimes place it in a colander over a bowl or hang the string from my fridge or a tall bottle) overnight.

*This tart is made using 12-15 hour labneh, although you can strain it less or more.

Chickpea Crust

1 batch Nan-e Nokhodchi

Fluted Tart Pan with removable bottom

1. Since this cookie dough is crumbly, I like to sprinkle it into the tart pan making an even layer.

2. Using a cup measure dipped in chickpea flour, press the crust to make a packed layer.

3. Sprinkle in additional dough along the perimeter and press up the sides to create a wall.

4. For a 3 inch deep tart pan you want to go about 2/3 of the way up the sides.

5. Bake in a 350F convection oven for 15 minutes or a 350F still oven for about 20 minutes until just golden.

 

Labneh Filling

2 Cups Muscat Grapes, rinsed and dried

1/4 cup Pistachios, raw and chopped

Strained Labneh

8 ounces Organic Heavy Cream

1 vanilla bean scrapes

zest 1 lemon

2 Tbsp Raw Honey

2 Tbsp Powdered Sugar

1. Whip heavy cream with vanilla bean and powdered sugar until stiff peaks are formed.

2. Using a whisk or standing mixer, break up labeh and "whip" with honey and lemon zest.

3. Use one scoop of whipped cream to lighten the labneh cheese mixture.

4. Fold in the remaining cream gently.

5. Reserve 1/2 cup of grapes whole.  Slice the remaining grapes in half and place 1.25 cups of grapes into labneh mixture and fold gently.

6. Pile filling into tart and top with remaining halved and whole grapes.  

7. Sprinkle blank spots on top of tart with pistachios.

Chill before serving.


Nooshe jan!

 

 

 

Dirty Desserts: Mango Coconut Macaroons

Dirty Desserts: Mango Coconut Macaroons

Not to be confused: these are not coconut mango macaroons, they are mango coconut macaroons!


Super simple, forever satisfying and a flavorful twist on an old classic.

12 oz Organic Unsweetened Shredded Coconut

1.25 Cups Organic Cane Sugar

10 ounces Egg Whites

8 ounces Organic Dried Mango Slices

1.2 tsp Salt

1. Whisk sugar, salt and egg whites together to dissolve sugar. (do not whip whites)

2. Using a sharp knife or kitchen scissors, cut mango into a dice.

3. Place in a bowl and pour 1/2 cup boiling water on top.

4 .Toss to combine, squeeze out an additional liquid.

5. Fold coconut into whites and fold in mango.

6. Place large spoonfuls on a parchment lined sheet tray.

7. Bake 360F until golden on the outside and soft and chewy on the inside

*Approximately 12 minutes.

 

 

 

Clean Eats: Ginger Chicken Poke Bowl

Clean Eats: Ginger Chicken Poke Bowl

This is absolutely delicious. Everything about this poke bowl (basically deconstructed sushi but this is with chicken) is super flavorful and satisfying.  This can easily be made vegan by substituting the chicken for mushrooms, beans or another veggie such as zucchini that you want to cook in the crave-able marinade.

GInger Poke Bowl

*This is an assembled bowl- you will be basically batch cooking the separate elements and can use this to make multiple bowls for a big dinner, lunch, plan for your week or utilize the prepped ingredients for a salad, fried rice, chicken lettuce wrap...you name it!

Purple Sticky Rice

2 Cups Purple Sticky Rice

4 Cups Water

2 Tbsp Brown Rice Vinegar

1. Cook rice according to instructions, generally 2 to 1 ratio, water to rice.

2.When rice has cooked completed, fold in the vinegar with a spatula (to not mash the very sticky rice)

Set aside

Sesame Seed Cucumbers

2 organic Cucumbers

1 Tbsp Black Sesame Seed

1.5 Tbsp Brown Rice Vinegar

1. Peel cucumbers and cut in half lengthwise.

2. Slice into half moons 1/4 inch thick.

3. Toss cucumbers with sesame seeds and vinegar

Set aside

Ginger Chicken

1 Pound Boneless Skinless Organic Chicken Breast Halves

2 Cloves Garlic

1 large Knob Ginger- 4 inches

3 Tbsp Brown Rice Vinegar

3 Tbsp Neutral Oil ( Almond, Grapeseed) 

3 Tbsp Tamari

1 tsp Turmeric Powder

1. Cut chicken into bite sized pieces.

2. MIcroplane ginger and garlic into a bowl.

3. Add vinegar, oil, tamari and turmeric. Whisk to combine.

4. Add chicken to marinated and stir to marinate chicken.

5. Add chicken to a sautee pan and cook in marinade on medium heat, about 7 minutes until cooked through.

Set Aside

Turmeric Mango

1 Alphonso Mango

1/2 tso Turmeric

1 tsp Grated Ginger

1. Cut mango into bite sized cubes.

2. Toss with turmeric and ginger.

Set Aside

To Assemble

Scallions, sliced

Avocado, cubed

Limes, Wedged

Additional marinade (not contaminated with chicken) for toppingCooked Rice

Cooked Chicken

Cucumbers

Mango

1. Place rice at the bottom of your bowl.

2. Top with warm ginger chicken.

3. Add cucumbers, mango and avocado.

4. Sprinkle with scallions and serve with a lime wedge and additional marinade if desired.

 

Miracles and Clean Eats: Natural Easter Eggs

Miracles and Clean Eats: Natural Easter Eggs

Springtime and crafts go hand in hand.  Out with the old and in with the fresh floral arrangements, a new throw on your sofa, redecorating and of course preparing for Easter!

Dyed eggs are essential for kids playtime, but I wanted to make eggs that were vibrant in their vastly different hues and executed with what I had on hand, being old red wine and of-the-moment turmeric.  

The eggs also look pretty jazzy in my blue bowl that came back from Morocco with my fabulous Mother, Janet.

The secret for the deep dyed hue is to boil the white eggs in the colored solution for about 15 minutes, allowing them to also cool to absorb as much color as possible.

Purple Hued Red Wine Eggs

1 bottle red wine (save the bordeaux for consuming)

6 each White Eggs 

1. In a small saucepan combine eggs and wine. 

2. Bring to a simmer for 20 minutes. 

3. Turn off heat and allow eggs to cool in wine. 

4. Remove eggs from wine after 4 hours, rinse and allow to dry.

 

Turmeric Eggs

750 ml Water

3 Tbsp Turmeric

6 each Eggs

1. In a small saucepan combine turmeric and water. Whisk to combine.

2. Place eggs in mixture and bring to a simmer for 15 minutes.

3. Allow eggs to cool in mixture and sit for 2 hours.

4. Drain, rinse and allow to dry.