Meal Ideas 04 October 2019

A Flavorful Fall Meal for the Entire Family

(Family Features) When fall comes around, it brings many iconic flavors, festive traditions and family meals, along with cravings for warm, hearty dishes. For your next gathering of loved ones, whether it’s a special occasion, sporting event or simply spending quality time together, serve a classic comfort food perfect for a small crowd.

While a roast leg of lamb may be considered time-intensive or best-suited for special occasions, it can be a surprisingly stress-free dish to prepare at home. A simple way to update familiar dishes, grass-fed lamb, available at your local Whole Foods Market, is easy to cook; prepare it the same way you would grass-fed beef.

This grass-fed leg of lamb recipe, for example, requires little fuss and the oven does the work for you. Infused with garlic and thyme, topped with a creamy meat sauce and garnished with a side of seasonal produce, you can delight your family and friends with this tender and delicious meal. Plus, New Zealand grass-fed lamb is a lean, finely textured and flavorful protein, well-suited for a variety of dishes.

For more information, cooking tips and recipes, visit beefandlambnz.com.

Grass-Fed Leg of Lamb

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours, 45 minutes
Servings: 8

Lamb:

  • 4 1/2-5 1/2       pounds Atkins Ranch grass-fed leg of lamb, at room temperature
  • 1 3/4    ounces butter, softened
  • 3          cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1          teaspoon roughly chopped thyme leaves
  • salt, to taste
  • ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1-2       handfuls thyme sprigs
  • 1          onion, sliced
  • 1/2       cup olive oil

Meat Sauce:

  • 1          cup beef stock
  • 3/4       cup creme fraiche or sour cream
  • lemon zest, finely grated
  • 1          tablespoon wine vinegar
  • 1          bay leaf
  • salt, to taste
  • sauteed mushrooms (optional)
  • sauteed green beans (optional)
  • steamed carrots and snap peas (optional)
  1. Heat oven to 320° F.
  2. To prepare lamb: Using sharp knife, make 4-5 shallow slits in lamb. In bowl, mix butter, garlic and chopped thyme. Coat butter mixture in slits and sprinkle lamb with salt and pepper, to taste.
  3. Place thyme sprigs and sliced onion in base of roasting tin and place lamb on top. Drizzle olive oil over lamb. Roast 2 hours, 45 minutes.
  4. To make meat sauce: Remove lamb from oven 30 minutes before end of cooking time. Place lamb on board then tip juices into saucepan. Place lamb back in roasting tin and return to oven.
  5. Skim fat off roasting juices. Add beef stock to remaining juices and bring to boil.
  6. Reduce heat and add creme fraiche or sour cream, lemon zest, vinegar and bay leaf. Simmer until sauce reduces some. Season with salt, to taste, to counteract acidity.
  7. Remove lamb from oven and rest covered loosely with foil and tea towel 10 minutes before carving.
  8. Strain sauce into bowl or gravy boat and serve hot with lamb and sauteed mushrooms, green beans or steamed carrots and snap peas, if desired.

Source: Beef + Lamb New Zealand

Holiday 28 March 2019

Springtime Celebrations

Family Features) Spring is full of celebrations and rich traditions that bring the family around the table for special meals. A savory leg of lamb or a dish with succulent lamb loin chops is a delicious way to enjoy a flavorful meal, no matter the occasion.

American lamb pairs beautifully with a variety of wines. Wineries such as Kendall-Jackson have a wide selection of wines that bring out lamb's mild, meaty flavor and make it even more irresistible.

Tips for Roasting Lamb

-A bone-in leg of lamb cooks faster than a boneless leg of lamb. Use a good meat thermometer to determine doneness:
Rare 135°F
Medium Rare 145°F
Medium160°F

-You can sear the lamb roast first in a hot 450°F oven for 15 minutes to seal in the juices and then reduce oven temp to 325°F and continue roasting for approximately 1 1/2 to 2 hours or until internal temperature reaches 5 to 10 degrees less than your desired temperature.

-Remove roast from oven and let rest for 20 minutes before serving. This allows the meat's juices to settle and make carving easier. (As the meat rests, the internal temperature will rise 5 to 10 degrees.)

-Carve the roast against the grain so the meat will be tender. A naturally tender cut like leg should be sliced about one half inch thick.

Choosing the Right Wine

-COMPLEMENT. Similarly flavored foods and wines complement each other.
Example: Citrus-based sauce and a lemony, lightly oaked Chardonnay (such as Kendall-Jackson Avant Chardonnay or Chablis from the Burgundy region of France).
Example: Mushrooms with the earthy flavors of Pinot Noir.

-CONTRAST. Contrasting flavors balance each other.
Example: Spicy foods and sweet wines, such as Thai food and an off-dry Riesling.
Example: Salty foods and crisp, high-acid wines such as Sauvignon Blanc or Champagne.

-MATCH the TENOR. Match a food's weight and intensity to similar elements in wine.
Example: Delicately flavored foods call for delicate varieties of wine, such as Pinot Gris or Sauvignon Blanc.
Example: Weighty textures and intense flavors are a better match for more powerful wines, such as matching herb-crusted roast lamb with a robust Syrah or Merlot.

To learn more about food and wine pairings, visit www.kj.com.

Roasted Leg of American Lamb

Serves 8
Serve with Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Merlot.

  • 1 boneless leg of lamb, approximately 6 pounds

For the marinade:

  • 4 garlic cloves, smashed
  • 2 lemons, zested
  • 1/2 tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons dried oregano
  • 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary, chopped
  • 1 bunch parsley, chopped
  • 1 cup olive oil
  • 1/4 cup kosher salt
  1. In small bowl, combine all ingredients. Rub mixture on leg of lamb. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate overnight.
  2. Bring lamb to room temperature and sprinkle with salt. Preheat the oven to 375°F. Roast for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a thermometer inserted into center of leg reads 125°F to 130°F. Cover loosely with aluminum foil and allow to rest for 20 minutes.

American Lamb Sandwich with Tzatziki Sauce

  • Leftover roasted leg of lamb

For tzatziki sauce:

  • 1/2 English cucumber, peeled, cut in half and seeded
  • 1 tablespoon fresh dill
  • 2 tablespoons fresh mint
  • 8 ounces Greek yogurt
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. Grate cucumber with a box grater. Place grated cucumber in a strainer, sprinkle with salt and allow to drain for 20 minutes.
  2. In a bowl, add dill, mint, yogurt, garlic and lemon juice. Squeeze as much liquid from cucumber as possible and add cucumber to the yogurt. Mix well and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. To serve: Fill warm flatbread or pita with sliced leftover leg of lamb, thinly sliced tomatoes and cucumbers and chilled tzatziki sauce.

Fresh Mint and Garlic Marinated Grilled American Lamb Loin Chops
with Roasted Fingerling Potatoes and Green Beans

Serves 4
Serve with Kendall-Jackson Vintner's Reserve Syrah.

  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/2 bunch parsley leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 bunch mint leaves, chopped
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 8 lamb loin chops
  1. In bowl, add garlic, shallot, herbs, olive oil, vinegar, salt and pepper. Whisk to combine.
  2. Place lamb chops into a bowl and add 3/4 cup of marinade (reserve remaining marinade for sauce). Mix to coat thoroughly. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
  3. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. Grill lamb to desired temperature (medium-rare is recommended). Remove from heat and allow the lamb chops to rest for 5 minutes. Drizzle chops with the reserved mint and garlic sauce. Serve with roasted potatoes and green beans.

For potatoes:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil, divided
  • 1 1/2 pounds fingerling potatoes, cut in half lengthwise
  • 4 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  1. Place a sheet pan in the oven and preheat to 425°F.
  2. In a bowl, combine 1/8 cup of olive oil and remaining ingredients. Toss to coat potatoes.
  3. Pour 1/8 cup olive oil onto hot sheet pan and allow to heat for 1 minute. Place potatoes onto hot sheet pan and roast for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately.

For green beans:

  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 pound green beans, stems removed
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. In large pot, add 1 tablespoon salt and 2 quarts water; bring to a boil. Add green beans and cook until tender, approximately 4 minutes.
  2. Remove beans from water, place into bowl with butter and toss to coat. Salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

Recipes courtesy of Kendall-Jackson Executive Chef Justin Wangler

Source: The American Lamb Board / Kendall-Jackson

Holiday 01 November 2018

Put a Twist on Tradition this Holiday Season

(Family Features) ’Tis the season to dust off the decorations, dig out your family cookbook and celebrate everything that makes the holidays special. While it’s certainly a time to honor longstanding traditions, there’s also room to start something new and put your personal touch on the festivities.

When planning your holiday menu, for example, shake it up with a few simple swaps to impress your guests no matter the meal occasion. For an appetizer, try a Pork and Ricotta Crostini for a flavorful upgrade to the typical cheese platter. Come dinnertime, replace the annual pot roast with a savory and seasonal Apple and Herb-Roasted Pork Shoulder featuring high-quality Farmer John California Natural Fresh Pork, which is made from 100 percent fresh pork and with no artificial ingredients.

For more recipe inspiration and ideas to shake up the season, visit FarmerJohn.com.

Apple and Herb-Roasted Pork Shoulder

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 2 hours, 15 minutes
Total time: 2 hours, 30 minutes
Servings: 12

  • 1          Farmer John Boneless Pork Shoulder Butt Roast
  • salt, to taste
  • pepper, to taste
  • garlic powder, to taste
  • 1          pound potatoes, cut into 2-inch chunks
  • 2          firm apples, cut into six pieces
  • 4          thyme sprigs
  • 6          sage leaves
  • 1          cup chicken broth
  1. Heat oven to 500° F.
  2. Season pork shoulder roast with salt, pepper and garlic powder, to taste.
  3. Lay potatoes and apples in bottom of roasting pan. Top with thyme and sage.
  4. Place seasoned pork shoulder in roasting pan on top of thyme and sage.
  5. Pour chicken broth into roasting pan. Roast 10-15 minutes until skin is browned.
  6. Reduce heat to 300° F and continue to roast, basting liquid over pork every 30 minutes for about 2 hours until internal temperature reaches 155° F.
  7. Remove pork shoulder roast and let cool 15 minutes before slicing.
  8. Serve with roasted potatoes and apples.

Pork and Ricotta Crostini

Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 36 minutes
Total time: 51 minutes
Servings: 10

  • 1          Farmer John Pork Tenderloin
  • 1          tablespoon olive oil
  • 1          tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon, Italian seasoning blend, divided
  • 1          teaspoon garlic powder, divided
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 1/2    cups ricotta cheese
  • 1/4       teaspoon onion powder
  • 1          long baguette, cut into 1/2-inch thick slices
  • balsamic glaze
  • 3          tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  1. Heat oven to 425° F. Rub all sides of pork tenderloin with olive oil and place on rack in shallow roasting pan. Sprinkle 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning, 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder, salt and pepper evenly over tenderloin.
  2. Roast 25-30 minutes per pound until internal temperature reaches 150° F. Remove pork tenderloin from oven and let stand 5-10 minutes. Cut into thin slices.
  3. In small bowl, mix together ricotta cheese, remaining Italian herb mix, remaining garlic powder and onion powder until well combined. Set aside.
  4. Place baguette slices on large baking sheet and bake 2-4 minutes per side while pork tenderloin is standing.
  5. To assemble, spread about 1 tablespoon ricotta cheese mixture on one side of each baguette slice; top with thin slices of pork. Garnish with drizzle of balsamic glaze and parsley.

Source: Farmer John

Breakfast & Brunch 01 November 2018

A Comforting Breakfast to Savor this Season

Bring new holiday traditions to life with a warm, wholesome morning meal

(Family Features) As the busy holiday season approaches, take time to relax and make family memories with a delicious breakfast at home. Bringing loved ones together doesn’t always need to involve an elaborate gathering. Sometimes, a warm, cozy morning meal is all you need.

With wholesome nutrition top of mind for many moms, incorporating milk into your family’s routine can be a simple way to get important nutrients like protein, calcium and vitamin D. When you use real, farm fresh, dairy milk in your favorite holiday recipes, you can feel good knowing that it provides a natural nutrient package that is hard to match in any other single food or beverage.

During this holiday season, bring the family together to enjoy savory comfort foods, like this homemade twist on classic hash browns. Made with ingredients you can feel good about, like nutritious milk, crisp vegetables and fresh herbs, this potato hash is sure to become a new favorite. It’s served with an 8-ounce glass of milk for an extra nutrient boost that helps everyone power through the busy holiday season.

For more recipes to bring the family together during the holiday season, visit milklife.com.

Garlic Herb Potato Hash

  • 3          tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 8          small red potatoes, skin-on and diced (about 3 cups)
  • 1          red bell pepper, diced
  • 3          teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1          teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped, plus additional for topping
  • 1          teaspoon fresh oregano, finely chopped, plus additional for topping
  • 2          tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 2/3       cup milk
  • 1/4       teaspoon salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon pepper
  • 2          slices low-sodium turkey bacon, cooked near crispy
  • 1/4       cup finely grated reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese
  1. In large skillet over medium heat, melt butter then add potatoes, bell peppers, garlic, thyme and oregano, stirring occasionally until potatoes are fork-tender.
  2. Sprinkle flour over potato mixture and stir to coat. Gradually stir in milk until sauce forms. Season with salt and pepper and stir in slices of turkey bacon. Sprinkle with cheddar cheese and cover, allowing to melt 1-2 minutes. Uncover and top with additional herbs, if desired, before serving.
  3. Pair each serving with 8-ounce glass of milk.

Nutritional information per serving: 320 calories; 11 g fat; 6 g saturated fat; 45 mg cholesterol; 17 g protein; 38 g carbohydrates; 3 g fiber; 440 mg sodium; 434 mg calcium (45% of daily value). Nutrition figures based on using fat free milk, and include an 8-ounce glass of milk. 

Source: MilkPEP

Meal Ideas 11 February 2019

Pair Pecans with Seasonal Produce for Nutritious Dishes

(Family Features) With summer comes the opening of farmers markets bursting with fresh produce ripe for the taking. Pair your fresh-picked bounty with wholesome pecans for power-packed seasonal recipes from salads and snacks to side dishes and main courses.

American Pecans are The Original Supernut; a naturally sweet superfood that’s nutritious, versatile and local as it’s the only major tree nut native to America. Pecans are also among the highest in “good” monounsaturated fats and contain plant protein, fiber, flavonoids and essential minerals, including copper, manganese and zinc, so you can feel good when adding them to your next meal or snack.

After a morning at the farmers market, cook up a nourishing spread for breakfast or lunch. For a quick, mess-free brunch, try Sheet Pan Eggs with Pecan Breakfast “Sausage.” Substitute flavored ground pecans for your sausage and add fresh greens for a quick, good-for-you option with plant-based protein.

For a simple yet sweet take on dessert, try Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts with a three-ingredient, pecan-based crumb as the base, topped with a light filling and fresh berries. 

To find additional seasonal recipes, nutrition information and cooking tips, and to learn more about America’s native nut, visit AmericanPecan.com.

Mini Pecan Lemon Berry Tarts

Mini Pecan Crusts:

  • 2          cups pecan pieces or halves
  • 1/4       cup butter, melted
  • 2          tablespoons sugar
  • 24        Mini Pecan Crusts
  • 1/2       cup lemon curd
  • 1/2       cup blueberries or raspberries
  • powdered sugar, for dusting (optional)
  1. To make Mini Pecan Crusts: Heat oven to 350° F. Line mini muffin tin with paper liners.
  2. In food processor, blend pecans, butter and sugar until mixture forms coarse dough.
  3. Scoop about 2 teaspoons pecan mixture into each muffin tin. Use back of wooden spoon or fingers to press mixture evenly along bottom and up sides of each muffin cup.
  4. Bake 12 minutes, or until crusts are golden brown. Allow crusts to cool completely before removing from pan.
  5. Spoon 1 teaspoon lemon curd into each Mini Pecan Crust. Top each with one raspberry or three small blueberries. Dust with powdered sugar, if desired.

Sheet Pan Eggs with Pecan Breakfast “Sausage”

Pecan Breakfast Sausage:

  • 1          teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2       medium onion, diced (about 1/2 cup)
  • 1          tablespoon coconut aminos
  • 1          teaspoon sage
  • 1          teaspoon thyme
  • 1/4       teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4       teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/4       teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/8       teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1          cup raw pecan halves

Sheet Pan Eggs:

  • 12        eggs, beaten
  • 3/4       cup fat-free or low-fat milk
  • 1 1/4    teaspoons salt
  • 1/2       teaspoon pepper
  • 1          cup fresh spinach, chopped
  • nonstick cooking spray
  1. Heat oven to 325° F.
  2. To make Pecan Breakfast “Sausage”: In pan over medium heat, add olive oil, onion, coconut aminos, sage, thyme, nutmeg, garlic powder, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Cook about 4 minutes until onion is translucent.
  3. In food processor, pulse onion mixture and pecans until consistency of ground beef is reached, about 8-10 pulses.
  4. To make Sheet Pan Eggs: In large bowl, whisk eggs, milk, salt and pepper until combined.
  5. Add pecan “sausage” and spinach to eggs and stir. Lightly spray nonstick 12-by-17-inch sheet pan with cooking spray. Pour egg mixture onto prepared pan. Bake 18-20 minutes, or until eggs are fully cooked.

Source: American Pecan Council

Holiday 09 November 2018

A Host’s Guide to Holiday Gatherings

(Family Features) Gearing up for a big crowd at your holiday festivities can provide moments of excitement, stress, fun and plenty of other emotions as the big dinner draws near. This year, avoid any nagging feelings of doubt with this step-by-step guide to prepare for large gatherings.

Plan in advance. Even if you're typically the last-minute type, the hectic holiday season is no time to wait until a few days ahead of the celebration to throw meals and more together. Instead, be sure to put together a guest list and send invites at least a few weeks out. Take inventory of supplies like silverware, plates, serving dishes and any accessories you'd like to feature at the table. Make an outline of the food each guest is bringing, or, if you'll supply all the food, ensure there will be plenty for everyone - don't forget to take into account special diets or allergies.

Make a list. Planning only takes you so far if you don't write everything down. Once the menu is determined, list out what you'll need to make the magic happen. Don't forget to jot down easily overlooked items that can be picked up the day of, such as ice.

Remember to thaw. One surefire way to make the big day a big disaster is to forget to thaw your main course. If you're planning to roast a turkey - perhaps the most common centerpiece - remember it takes around a day to thaw for every two pounds of meat. So, for example, it could take close to a week for a 14-pound turkey to fully thaw prior to cooking.

Prep the day before. There are many tasks (big and small) that can be taken care of the day before guests arrive, making the holiday less stressful for hosts. From whipping up simple appetizers like dips to giving the house a thorough cleaning, there's plenty of pressure that can be taken off your shoulders 24 hours in advance. If you really want to make the big day a breeze, consider cooking your main dish, slicing the meat and placing it in reheating pans one day prior.

Create a schedule. No matter how far in advance you plan or how much prep you complete prior to the festivities, there will always be day-of work to be done. With guests coming in and out, it can be helpful to lay out what's known as a "fire list," which details times chronologically for when things need done, such as starting the oven to warm the turkey or simply remembering to lay out dessert following the meal.

Find more holiday hosting tips and meal solutions at omahasteaks.com.

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Butcher's Butter Filet Mignon Roast Garnish

  • 1/4 cup salted butter
  • 1/4 cup duck fat
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh rosemary, minced
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme, minced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1/2 anchovy filet, minced
  • 1/8 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 prepared Omaha Steaks Filet Mignon Roast
  1. In small saucepan, combine butter, duck fat, rosemary, thyme, garlic, anchovy filet and black pepper. Heat on low 3-5 minutes until fragrant. Remove from heat and serve over Filet Mignon Roast.

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Roasted Grape Gastrique

Roasted Grapes:

  • 4 cups assorted grapes (picked, washed and dried)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • nonstick cooking spray

Gastrique:

  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 4 tablespoons water
  1. To make Roasted Grapes: Heat oven to 350° F.
  2. In bowl, combine grapes, olive oil, salt, pepper and cinnamon stick.
  3. Lightly spray baking sheet with nonstick cooking spray. Pour grape mixture onto baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes. Remove from oven and pour into bowl.
  4. To make Gastrique: In small saucepan, combine water and sugar. Bring to boil over medium-high heat, 5-7 minutes, until sugar starts to brown.
  5. Remove from heat and slowly add vinegar. Return to heat and stir until combined. Add cornstarch and water mixture; bring to boil. Remove from heat.
  6. Pour Gastrique mixture over Roasted Grapes.

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Whole Basted Turkey

  • 1 Omaha Steaks Whole Basted Turkey (10 pounds)
  1. Thaw turkey completely in refrigerator 3-4 days or, keeping turkey in vacuum-sealed packaging, place in sink full of cold water 5-7 hours, changing water approximately every 30 minutes.
  2. Heat oven to 350° F. Remove turkey from vacuum-sealed bag. Place turkey in bag provided; secure bag with twist tie. Place bag in deep roasting pan. Using fork, puncture 6-8 holes in top of bag. For extra browning or crispness, slit top of bag for final 20-30 minutes of roasting.
  3. Roast turkey 2 hours, 45 minutes- 3 hours. Turkey is done when internal temperature measured with kitchen thermometer reaches 165° F.

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Source:  Omaha Steaks

Appetizers & Sides 14 September 2018

Exquisite Eating

Small plates to make for appealing dishes

(Family Features) Imagine treating yourself and your dinner guests to a delicious, restaurant-caliber meal without leaving your dining room or hiring a personal chef. Small plates, also known as tapas, are lighter, bite-sized indulgences that you can prepare and style seamlessly. By putting your own artful, unique spin on small plates, you can indulge in a meal that appeals to the senses and conveys sophistication.

It can be easy to create delicious small plates: all you need are wholesome, seasonal ingredients to pair with an artisan-crafted, quality olive oil such as Carapelli. The line, with three varieties to explore, brings a renaissance to the modern kitchen and is ideal for endeavoring chefs looking to try new flavors and experiment with tastes or recipes. It embodies a true passion for the art of creating extra-virgin olive oils and is designed to lift cooks out of the everyday cooking experience.

Keep in mind that when it comes to small plates, what’s important isn’t just the recipe, but the plate – and plating – of the cuisine itself. Foods that appeal to the eye are likely to tempt the taste buds as well. Invest in appropriate-sized dishware for small plates that allows the food to take center-stage.

For a true multi-sensory indulgence, also take time to garnish your dishes, big and small, with edible enhancements that lend a subtle complement to the main attraction. A selection of fresh greens, sprinkling of herbs and even a light drizzle of olive oil can do the trick.

Plan how you’ll adapt your favorite dishes for size – and season – with more tips and recipes at carapelliusa.com.
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Carrots and Fresh Herbs with Champagne-Dijon Vinaigrette

Prep time: 10 minutes
Servings: 6

Champagne-Dijon Vinaigrette:

  • 2          tablespoons champagne vinegar
  • 1          teaspoon Dijon Mustard
  • 1          tablespoon clover honey
  • 1/2       cup Carapelli Organic Olive Oil
  • 1/2       teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1/2       teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1          teaspoon fresh parsley, finely chopped
  • 1          teaspoon basil, finely chopped

 

  • 1          pound carrots, peeled and finely shredded
  • 2          tablespoons Italian parsley, chopped
  • 2          tablespoons chives, thinly sliced, plus more cut into 3/4-inch  pieces, for garnish
  • 1/3       cup Champagne Vinaigrette
  • fine sea salt, to taste
  • freshly ground black pepper,  to taste
  • chive sticks, for garnish
  1. In medium mixing bowl, combine champagne vinegar, Dijon and honey. Whisk constantly until well combined. While whisking, slowly drizzle in olive oil to emulsify. Add garlic, salt, pepper, parsley and basil: whisk to combine.
  2. In mixing bowl, toss carrots, parsley and chives. Add dressing. Season, to taste, with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Garnish with chive sticks.

Notes: Vinaigrette can be stored in refrigerator up to five days. For zestier salad, add additional 2 tablespoons vinaigrette to carrots; serve with crusty bread.
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Whipped Ricotta and Goat Cheese Beet Skewers

Prep time: 20 minutes
Cook time: 3 hours, plus cooling time
Servings: 42 skewers

Beets:

  • 2          beets (about 1 pound), 3 inches in diameter, peeled and sliced into 3/4-inch chunks
  • 1          tablespoon Carapelli Oro Verde Extra Virgin Olive Oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1/2       teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 1          teaspoon sea salt
  • arugula, for garnish
  • flaked sea salt, for garnish

Whipped Ricotta and Goat Cheese:

  • 4          ounces goat cheese
  • 1/4       cup whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1          tablespoon Carapelli Oro Verde Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 1/4       teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1/8       teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/8       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  1. Heat sous vide water bath to 185° F.
  2. In mixing bowl, combine beets, olive oil, thyme and salt; toss to coat. Remove beets from liquid and divide, placing them in single layer into two quart-sized vacuum-seal bags, leaving any excess liquid behind.
  3. Use vacuum sealer to remove air and double-seal bag. To use zip-top bags instead, slowly dip slightly open bags into large container filled with water, allowing water to displace air. Seal bags when air is removed.
  4. Place vacuum-sealed bag into prepared water bath, placing heavy, heat-resistant bowl on top of beets to keep them submerged, if necessary. Cook 3 hours.
  5. If you do not have a sous vide machine, bring large stock pot filled with water to rolling boil. Place vacuum-sealed bags in water. Reduce to gentle simmer, cover and cook 1 hour.
  6. Carefully remove beets from water bath and cool in sealed bag until they reach room temperature, about 30 minutes. Refrigerate at least 30 minutes more before serving.
  7. In mini food processor, cream goat cheese, ricotta and olive oil until smooth. Add zest, salt and pepper: stir to combine.
  8. Transfer cheese mixture to piping bag fitted with star tip and refrigerate until ready to use.
  9. To serve, remove beets from bag and arrange on serving platter. Pipe dollop of Whipped Ricotta and Goat Cheese onto each beet. Drizzle with olive oil.
  10. Garnish with arugula and pinch of flaked sea salt; place skewer through each beet to serve.

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Olive Oil Drizzled Pecorino Popcorn

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes
Servings: 4

  • 1/2       cup grated pecorino, plus more for garnish
  • 1/2       teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more for garnish
  • 3          tablespoons Carapelli Unfiltered Extra Virgin Olive Oil, divided
  • 1/3       cup yellow popcorn kernels
  1. In bowl, combine pecorino and pepper; mix until well combined and there are no cheese clumps.
  2. In small saucepan over low flame, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil; keep warm.
  3. Add remaining olive oil and popcorn to large Dutch oven. Stir until all popcorn kernels are coated in oil.
  4. Cover Dutch oven with lid and cook over medium-high heat, shaking pot periodically. Once popcorn begins to pop, lower heat to medium and continue to shake pot approximately every 15 seconds. When popping slows considerably, remove Dutch oven from heat and allow to rest until popping ceases, about 30 seconds.
  5. Remove lid and transfer popcorn to large mixing bowl. Drizzle warm olive oil over popcorn; toss to coat. Sprinkle cheese mixture over popcorn; toss to coat.
  6. Divide popcorn into bowls. Sprinkle some freshly grated pecorino and dash of freshly ground black pepper over top; serve.

Source:  Carapelli Olive Oil

Meal Ideas 03 November 2017

Spice Up the Season

Flavorful holiday dishes for every course

(Family Features) Whether this holiday marks your culinary debut or you’re a seasoned chef looking for a fresh take on seasonal favorites, you can take some notes from the pros. Every good chef has an arsenal of tricks and techniques to create amazing dishes every time, and the perfect blend of spices is one of those winning secrets.

In a properly seasoned dish, the spice accents the natural flavors without overpowering them. That’s why it’s a good idea to build your menu around spices and herbs of the highest quality, such as Spice Islands, which crafts and packages spices and herbs from around the world to deliver the most authentic and intense flavor possible.

Add flavor-rich, seasonal spices to your holiday table with these flavorful recipes for a Traditional Turkey Rub, Cranberry Apple Chutney, Butternut Squash Soup with Thyme Butter and Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes.

From the appetizers to the main dish to dessert, flavorful seasonings can make a good recipe great. Find more ideas for spicing up your holiday menu at SpiceIslands.com.

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Mini Pumpkin Cheesecakes

Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 50 minutes
Yield: 18 mini cheesecakes

  • 18        paper baking cups (2 1/2 inch diameter)
  • 18        gingersnap cookies
  • 12        ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 3/4       cup sugar
  • 1          tablespoon corn starch
  • 1          teaspoon Spice Islands Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • 2          eggs
  • 1          cup canned pumpkin
  • 1/3       cup light corn syrup
  1. Heat oven to 325° F. Line muffin tin with paper baking cups. Place 1 cookie in each cup.
  2. With electric mixer, beat cream cheese, sugar, corn starch and pumpkin pie spice. Add eggs and mix well. Add pumpkin and corn syrup; beat 1 minute.
  3. Pour filling into liners, dividing evenly. Bake 30-35 minutes until just set.
  4. Chill 1 hour.

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Cranberry Apple Chutney

Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Yield: 2 cups

  • 1          bag (12 ounces) fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1/4       cup water
  • 2          large apples, cored and chopped
  • 1 1/2    cups sugar
  • 2/3       cup finely chopped onion
  • 2/3       cup golden raisins
  • 2          teaspoons minced fresh ginger
  • 1          teaspoon Spice Islands Minced Garlic
  • 1          teaspoon salt
  • 3/4       teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Allspice
  • 1/4       teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Saigon Cinnamon
  • 1/8       teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Cloves
  • 2/3       cup dark corn syrup
  • 1/3       cup cider vinegar
  • 2/3       cup chopped pecans
  1. In large saucepan, combine cranberries, water, apples, sugar, onion, raisins, ginger, garlic, salt, allspice, cinnamon and cloves. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat; cover, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes. Add corn syrup, vinegar and pecans. Cook uncovered 15 minutes, stirring frequently.
  2. Serve with roast turkey, pork roast or baked ham.

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Butternut Squash Soup with Thyme Butter

Prep time: 35 minutes
Total time: 1 hour, 30 minutes
Yield: 6-8 servings

  • 1          tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1          teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Ginger
  • 1/4       teaspoon Spice Islands Cayenne Pepper
  • 3          pounds (about 7 cups) butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2          medium cooking apples, peeled, cored and coarsely chopped
  • 2          small onions, coarsely chopped
  • 2          cans (14 1/2 ounces each) chicken broth, divided
  • 1/2       cup water
  • Thyme Butter:
  • 1/4       cup butter, softened
  • 1/2       teaspoon Spice Islands Thyme
  • 1/2       teaspoon Spice Islands Garlic Powder
  1. Heat oven to 425° F.
  2. In large bowl, combine oil, ginger and cayenne pepper. Add squash, apples and onions; toss to coat. Transfer to 15-by-10-inch baking pan. Roast in single layer 35-45 minutes, or until tender. Remove from oven.
  3. Working in batches, combine squash mixture and one can chicken broth in blender or food processor; blend until smooth. Transfer pureed mixture to large saucepan. Stir in remaining chicken broth and water. Bring soup to boil; reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, 10 minutes.
  4. To make thyme butter: Combine butter, thyme and garlic powder until well blended. Spoon onto wax paper and roll into 3-inch log; wrap tightly and refrigerate until firm.
  5. To serve, cut butter into thin slices. Ladle hot soup into individual bowls; top each with slice of butter.

Tip: Puree can be made in advance, covered and refrigerated up to 2 days.

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Traditional Turkey Rub

Prep time: 5 minutes
Yield: rub for 1 turkey (about 15 pounds)

  • 2          teaspoons Spice Islands Crushed Rosemary
  • 1          teaspoon Spice Islands Thyme
  • 1          teaspoon Spice Islands Onion Powder
  • 1/2       teaspoon Spice Islands Garlic Powder
  • 1/8       teaspoon Spice Islands Ground Saigon Cinnamon
  • sea salt
  • Spice Islands Ground Black Pepper
  • pure olive oil (optional)
  • 1          turkey
  1. In small bowl, combine rosemary, thyme, onion powder, garlic powder and cinnamon. Generously add salt and pepper. Lightly coat turkey with oil, if desired.
  2. Rub all surfaces of turkey with seasoning. Roast according to package directions.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images (whole turkey on platter)

Source: Spice Islands

Meal Ideas 25 October 2017

Warm Up Fall Meals with Wine

(Family Features) Fall is the perfect time to welcome warm, robust flavors to your kitchen as well as your wine glass. With its bold, spicy, dark fruit flavors, cabernet sauvignon is a perfect wine for crisp fall weather.

Cabernet sauvignon is more versatile for pairing than some believe. It pairs well with different cheeses, meats, hearty vegetables and even fish. The key to creating a great dining experience is balancing the flavor of the meal with an elegantly balanced wine. When cooking, consider the three main flavors: sweet, salty and sour.

Sweet sauces can make cabernet sauvignon taste harsh and astringent, which takes away from the fresh fruit flavors in the wine. However, sour and salty flavors can make the wine taste more vibrant, creating a velvety mouthfeel of soft tannins while making the fruit taste more pronounced.

A well-balanced cabernet, such as Sequoia Grove Winery’s Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignon, pairs well with any meat or fish that is prepared with an acidic sauce or when given a squeeze of lemon juice. The winery, located in the heart of the Rutherford region in Napa Valley, specializes in the production of elegant, food-friendly cabernet sauvignon. Crafted by winemaker Molly Hill, the wine has aromatics of bright black cherries and blackberry, followed by cinnamon with a touch of black pepper. The palate is elegant with a round, full body, soft tannins and tasty blackberry flavors.

This recipe for a savory lamb shank stew has just the right amount of salt, acid and spice to create a deliciously balanced meal that is perfect to pair with an elegant glass of cabernet sauvignon. Learn more about Sequoia Grove’s wines and tasting seminars that include pairing suggestions at SequoiaGrove.com.
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Slow Cooker Lamb Shank Stew

Serves: 4

  • 1          yellow onion, diced
  • 2          celery stalks, diced
  • 2          carrots, peeled and diced
  • 3          garlic cloves, crushed
  • 2          cups chicken stock
  • 1          cup peeled, seeded and chopped tomatoes
  • 2          tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1          teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 1          bay leaf
  • 4          lamb shanks, external fat trimmed
  • salt, to taste
  • freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2          tablespoons olive oil
  • lemon juice
  1. In slow cooker, combine onion, celery, carrots, garlic, chicken stock, tomatoes, tomato paste, thyme and bay leaf; stir.
  2. Season lamb shanks with salt and pepper. In large saute pan over medium-high heat, warm olive oil until nearly smoking. Add shanks and brown on all sides, about 5 minutes. Transfer to slow cooker and cook on high 6 hours.
  3. Transfer lamb shanks to large serving dish. Remove bay leaf from cooking liquid. Using blender or stick blender, add generous squeeze of lemon juice to cooking liquid and puree until smooth. Pour some sauce over shanks. Serve with cauliflower puree and glass of Sequoia Grove Cabernet Sauvignon.

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Source: Kobrand Wine and Spirits

Beef 11 August 2015

Blackened Rib Eye Steak With Creamy Horseradish Sauce

Ingredients
  • 4 (10- to 14-ounce) Omaha Steaks rib eye steaks
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 8 teaspoons Blackening Seasoning (recipe below) or Omaha Steaks Blackened Seasoning
  • 1 cup Creamy Horseradish Sauce (recipe below) or Omaha Steaks Creamy Horseradish Sauce
Blackening Seasoning
  • 3 tablespoons sea salt or kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup paprika
  • 2 tablespoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon dry oregano
  • 1 tablespoon thyme
  • 1 tablespoon fennel seed
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon granulated garlic
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
Creamy Horseradish Sauce
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1/4 cup sour cream
  • 3 tablespoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon green onions, finely minced
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt or kosher salt
Preparation
  1. Heat a cast iron skillet until very hot, in a well ventilated area.
  2. Brush steaks with olive oil.
  3. Coat each side of the steaks with 1 teaspoon of blackening seasoning.
  4. Place steaks in the iron skillet, flipping steaks halfway through cooking. To cook a 1-inch-thick steak medium rare, cook about 4 minutes on first side and 3 minutes on other side.
  5. Spoon 2 tablespoons of Creamy Horseradish Sauce on each plate before topping with the cooked steak.
  6. Blackening Seasoning - Yield 1 cup -Combine all ingredients and mix well.
  7. Creamy Horseradish Sauce - Yield 1 cup -Combine all ingredients and mix well.
Serves

4

SOURCE: Omaha Steaks

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