Thursday, January 31, 2013

Mushroom Tapenade


Mushroom Tapenade
by Tracy Hersh
adapted from Modern Asian Flavors

This is an easy recipe and can be served so many ways.  You can serve it on crackers or toasted baguettes.  I like to put it on top of a burger or steak.  For an easy, elegant twist, spread chived cream cheese on the baguette before topping with the tapenade.
¼ cup Vegetable Oil
*½ ounce Marx Foods Dried Wild Porcini Mushrooms, re-hydrated and finely chopped
16 ounces assorted fresh mushrooms
½ cup reduced sodium soy sauce
¼ cup rice vinegar
1 bunch green onion, thinly sliced
Juice of ½ lemon
1 Tablespoon sherry
1 Tablespoon dark sesame oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
Parsley flakes for garnish
Heat oil in a wok or large frying pan.  Toss in mushrooms and stir in oil to cover.  Mix remainder of ingredients together and pour into pan.  Bring to a boil.  Reduce to medium high heat and cook until all liquid is absorbed, stirring occasionally.  Takes 20 to 30 minutes.  Serve warm or at room temperature.  Sprinkle with parsley flakes. 
*To hydrate porcini mushrooms, bring liquid and mushrooms to a boil.  Remove from heat and let stand for 20 minutes.  You may use water, broth, wine or cognac.  For this recipe I recommend water or sherry, as broth sometimes contains too much sodium and there is already a lot in the soy sauce. 

Rich Vanilla Pudding


A while back, I went on a chocolate pudding binge, but I have to admit that sometimes I prefer vanilla. Good vanilla helps, and I've got to say that the vanilla beans from Marx fit nicely into that category.

Marx sent a bunch of sample boxes filled with goodies to the 37 Cooks group, and the first thing I grabbed was the vanilla beans.


I'll admit that the first thing I thought of making was ice cream, but then I decided to make pudding instead.

This pudding is particularly rich because I used some heavy cream. It's not necessary - milk would do. But I had the cream on hand and I decided to use it. 


2 cups heavy cream
2 cups milk
3/4 cup sugar
2 egg yolks
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
Marx Foods Tahitian Vanilla Beans

Put the cream, milk, sugar, egg yolks, cornstarch, and salt into a saucepan and whisk well to combine.

Cut the vanilla beans open and scrape out the seeds. Add the scraped seeds and the pods to the saucepan. Heat the liquid slowly, stirring as needed, until the mixture thickens and bubbles.

Remove the vanilla pods and pass the pudding through a strainer into a storage container. Refrigerate the pudding until cold.

*You can rinse the vanilla pods and let them dry, then put them into a jar of sugar to make vanilla sugar, or put  them in vodka.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Crispy Garlic Potatoes and Chile Shrimp

Crispy Garlic Potatoes and Chile Shrimp
by Christine Adams

2 Marx Foods Dried New Mexico Chilies
3 yellow potatoes
1 pound large or jumbo shrimp
3 Tablespoons olive oil
6 garlic cloves

Pour 2 cups boiling water over peppers and soak for 30 minutes.  Drain and chop peppers.
Peel potatoes and slice very thin.  Simmer for 10 minutes in salted water, until just tender, and drain. 
Slice garlic very thin.

Rinse and de-vein shrimp.  Remove shell, leaving tail on, pat dry.

In a large fry pan, heat oil and add the chopped peppers and garlic.  Cook for 30 seconds and add the potatoes.  Try to keep them in a single layer.  Flip potatoes over every 5 minutes until golden brown and starting to crisp.

Push potatoes to the side and add the shrimp, tilt the pan to get the oil with the shrimp.  When shrimp starts to turn pink, flip and cook for a few more minutes.

Toss everything in the pan to mix and serve in a large, warm bowl. Serve with lots of crusty bread.

Poached Pears with Cardamom & Saffron




Poached Pears with Cardamom & Saffron
by Amy Klein
adapted from Bon Appetit Magazine January 2012

1/2 Tablespoon ground cardamom
2 cups white wine
1 1/2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
pinch of salt
4 firm pears, stems intact

Combine the cardamom, wine, lemon juice, saffron, & salt in a medium saucepan over medium heat, stirring occasionally until the sugar dissolves. Add the pears, making sure they are covered completely; add water if needed. Bring to a simmer and cook, turning the pears occasionally until the pears are tender, but not mushy. You should be able to stab them with a fork fairly easily.

Transfer the pears to a colander to drain, then refrigerate until ready to serve.

Bring the remaining poaching liquid to a boil and continue boiling until it has reduced to about half a cup.

Spoon some of the syrup over the pears and enjoy.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Crawfish-Stuffed Marx Foods Puya Chile Rubbed Salmon with Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce

Crawfish-stuffed Marx Foods Puya Chile Rubbed Salmon with Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce
by Kimberly Dockery
adapted from Emeril's New New Orleans Cooking

Makes 4 main-course servings

2 Tablespoons olive oil, in all
1 teaspoon finely minced onions
1 teaspoon finely minced green onions
1 teaspoon finely minced celery
1 teaspoon finely minced green bell peppers

1 teaspoon finely minced garlic
1/4 pound crawfish tails

1 Tablespoon shrimp stock
2 Tablespoon bread crumbs

1 Tablespoon Creole seasoning
1 1/2 cups Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce (recipe follows)

4 pieces salmon, 6 oz each, approx. 1 1/2" inches thick
4 dried Marx Foods Dried Puya Chilies, seeded and ground finely into powder

4 pieces of parchment paper
Preheat oven to 350°F

1.  Heat 1 tablespoon of the oil in a medium skillet over high heat.  Add the onions, green onions, celery, bell peppers, and garlic and saute for 1 minute.  Add the crawfish tails, stock, bread crumbs, and 1 teaspoon Creole seasoning and cook for 2 minutes.  Remove from the heat and set aside to cool for at least 15 minutes.  Makes 1 cup.

2.  Prepare the Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce, and cover to keep warm.

3.  Using a small, sharp knife, cut a slit about 2' inches long into the side of each piece of salmon and cut about 2 inches in to make a pocket. 

4.  Sprinkle the remaining 2 teaspoons Creole seasoning and Marx Foods finely ground Puya chilis over the salmon pieces, including inside the pocket. Fill each pocket with 1/4 cup of the cooled stuffing.

5.  Drizzle 1 tablespoon of olive oil over the salmon, place each piece of salmon inside of the parchment paper and fold over and tightly seal the salmon.  Place pockets of salmon on a cookie sheet with sides, and cook for approximately 15 minutes, or until flaky. 

6.  To serve, place 1 piece of salmon on each of 4 dinner plates and cover with a generous 1/3 cup of the Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce.

To make the Crawfish Bordelaise Sauce:
Makes 1 1/2 cups

1 Tablespoon minced shallots
1 Tablespoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon Creole seasoning
1/2 cup dry red wine
1/4 pound crawfish tails
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 1/2 cups veal or beef glaze
2 Tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 Tablespoon chopped green onions
 
1.  Combine the shallots, garlic, and Creole seasoning in a small nonreactive saucepan, place over high heat and cook for 3 minutes.  Watch carefully so it doesn't burn  Add the wine and bring to a boil.  Add the crawfish, salt, and pepper and b ring back to a boil.

2.  Stir in the glaze and bring back to a boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer, skimming off the fat and impurities several times for about 10 minutes.  Turn up the heat to high, skim the remaining impurities from the top of the sauce, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes.

3.  Whisk in the butter and continue to whisk until thoroughly incorporated, about 30 seconds.  Add the green onions and remove from the heat.

DILL-I-CIOUS Bar Snacks

Great snack for Sunday football! Plan ahead because Giardiniera needs to be made several days in advance and the Crispy-Spicy Dill Pizza Crackers need to be made 4-5 hours prior to serving.




Dill Scented Pork Meatballs with Lemon (Makes approximately 24 small meatballs)
by Carol Smith Ferguson
adapted from Bon App├ętit Outdoor Entertaining, Smoked Salmon Roulades 


1 glass of wine
1 cup pumpernickel breadcrumbs
1 bunch chopped green onions or scallions
3 Tablespoons chopped flat leaf Italian parsley
1 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 Tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon minced peeled fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder
1 pound freshly ground pork


Pour the wine into your favorite glass. Take a sip. Set aside for later. Combine all ingredients except for the pork and the lemon twists in a bowl. Mix very well. Add the pork and combine.  Form into tiny, marble sized meatballs. Broil or poach. Take another sip of wine. You've earned it!

Drink your wine. Remember, it's all about me.



Giardiniera 
by Linda Mire
adapted from Food Network, Jeff Mauro 

Note: Needs to be prepared 2-3 days in advance of serving.

1 cup carrots, cut into matchsticks
1 cup small cauliflower florets
1/2 cup red bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
1/2 cup yellow bell pepper, cut into matchsticks
1/2 cup white onion, cut into half-moons
1 stalk celery, cut into matchsticks
3 cloves of garlic, minced
2 Serrano peppers, sliced into small rings
1/4 cup sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon Marx Foods Dill Pollen 
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup canola oil
3/4 cup white vinegar


Place the carrots, cauliflower, red and yellow pepper, onion, celery, garlic, serrano peppers and sea salt in a plastic container (that has a tight lid).  Cover the vegetables completely with water. Place the lid on dish and store in the refrigerator for at least 10 hours.  


After 10 hours, place the vegetables in a strainer and rinse well. You want to give them a good drenching to remove excess salt. Drain well and place the vegetables in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the black pepper, dill pollen, olive oil, canola oil and white vinegar until well blended. Pour over the vegetables and toss to coat all your vegetables well. Place mixture in a clean, 32-ounce jar. Seal and return to the refrigerator for 10 more hours. Your vegetables will stay good refrigerated and sealed in your jar for 2-3 weeks.


This is also great on sandwiches, pizzas and in salads.


Dill Cream Sauce
by Linda Mire
adapted from Wolfgang Puck 


1 1/2 cup sour cream
1 teaspoon grated white onion
2 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon white pepper


In a small mixing bowl, combine all of the ingredients and mix well. Chill for at least 1 hour before serving.


Crispy Spicy-Dill Pizza Crackers 
by Linda Mire
makes approximately 25-30 crackers


Note:  Should be made 4-5 hours before serving.


1 can Pillsbury refrigerated artisan pizza crust with whole grain
flour
2/3 cup olive oil


Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Lightly flour your work surface. Unroll the pizza crust and place on the floured surface. Using a sharp knife, cut the dough vertically into 1 inch strips. Then cut horizontally to form 2-inch rectangles. Place the rectangles on a lightly greased pizza pan. Combine the olive oil, dill pollen and Slap Ya Mama in a small bowl and mix well. Lightly brush each rectangle with the olive oil mixture. Lightly sprinkle more dill and Slap Ya Mama on each rectangle. Bake at 400 degrees for 5-6 minutes. Check the crackers every 2 minutes to make sure they are not burning on the bottom. You want a light brown bottom. Remove from the oven and cool completely. Remove from the pan and wrap in aluminum foil until ready to serve. When you are ready to serve, preheat the oven back to 400 degrees. Place the crackers back on an ungreased pizza pan and warm for about 4 minutes. Again, check halfway through to make sure the bottoms are not burning. Baking them twice will ensure that you have nice crispy crackers.


Steve's Dill Bloody Mary Shooters
by Linda Mire


11 1/2 ounces tomato juice, canned
Juice from 1 large lemon
1 teaspoon celery salt
pinch of salt
pinch of pepper
8 - 12 drops original Tabasco Sauce (depends on how hot you like it)
1  jigger of vodka
dill pickle spear for garnish

Add all ingredients to a small pitcher and mix well. Pour into a shot glass and garnish with a dill pickle spear. 

Enjoy!




Monday, January 28, 2013

Toasted Nut and Oat Muesli with Vanilla Bean

Toasted Nut and Oat Muesli with Vanilla Bean

by Sarah Gillespy

adapted from In Jennie's Kitchen
 

Vanilla bean is something that I have never had worked with before. As I am not a huge dessert lover, I wanted something that was a bit sweet, but not something that would give me a sugar rush! When I was looking for recipes to inspire me, I came upon a recipe for Toasted Vanilla Bean Muesli on the blog In Jennie's Kitchen. What a great idea I thought! I enjoy recipes like this because it is very open to variations as to what you put in it according to your individual tastes, like I did with mine.


Ingredients:

3 cups old fashioned oats

4 tablespoons butter, melted

1 cup of nuts (I chose a mixture of almonds, pecans and pepitas aka pumpkin seeds)

1 cup of dried fruit (I used ½ cup dried apricots (chopped), ¼ cup golden raisins and ¼ cup of dried cranberries)

1 Marx Foods Tahitian Vanilla Bean, split lengthwise and seeds scraped out

Approx. 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

Pre-heat your oven to 300 degrees. Combine the oats, nuts, vanilla been seeds and cinnamon in a large bowl until everything is nicely incorporated together. Next, add the melted butter (I used the microwave in 10 second increments until melted) and stir until everything is coated. Pour the mixture onto a baking sheet lined with tin foil and spread it out evenly to have a uniform layer. Bake for about 15 minutes, check the mixture and give the baking sheet a little shake. At this point your kitchen will smell amazing! Bake for another 15 minutes or so. Remove the mixture and pour back into a large bowl, add the dried fruit and stir to combine. Pour back onto the baking sheet and allow to completely cool. Enjoy the muesli as a snack, in some milk like cereal or (my personal favorite) over Greek yogurt!

Chicken Noodle Soup with Fried Brussels Sprouts



Chicken Noodle Soup with Fried Brussels Sprouts
by Gary Gee

What could be more simple and comforting than Chicken Noodle Soup? Nostalgic for some chicken and noodles, I started a simple stock and added rich, aromatic undertones with crushed saffron threads. The soothing, flavorful broth was set off by a tangy, crunchy topping of fried Brussels sprouts.

6 chicken thighs
coarse salt
3 quarts water or chicken stock
1 onion, sliced
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 bay leaf
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme
1/4 teaspoon Marx Foods Sargol Saffron Threads, crushed
1/2 teaspoon white pepper
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon light soy sauce
1 stalk celery, peeled and chopped
8 ounces thin Asian noodles or thin spaghetti
1/2 cup frozen peas, thawed
Fried Brussels Sprouts:
4 Brussels sprouts, thinly sliced
1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1 Tablespoon chicken fat (skimmed from the soup)
Aleppo pepper
Brown sugar

Season the chicken thighs with salt. Let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, bring the water or stock to a boil over high heat. Add the onion, garlic, bay leaf, thyme, saffron, peppers and soy sauce. Add the chicken and celery, and return to a boil. Reduce the heat, and simmer for 45 minutes, skimming the fat into a deep cup.

Remove the chicken to a dish; skin and debone chicken. Tear or cut the chicken into pieces.

Check the cooking liquid for seasoning, adding more salt and pepper to taste. Cook the pasta according to the package directions in the cooking liquid, adding the peas during last minute of cooking time. Add the chicken. Ladle the soup into serving bowls (use tongs to serve the noodles). Sprinkle with the fried Brussels sprouts and serve at once.

For the Brussels Sprouts:
Dry the sliced Brussels sprouts thoroughly.

Heat oil and fat over medium-high heat. Carefully add the Brussels sprouts and fry until crisp. Remove to paper towels and drain. Season to taste with salt and Aleppo pepper, adding a pinch of brown sugar. Toss to coat. Sprinkle over the soup and serve at once.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Chunky Potato Soup with Dill & Bacon



Chunky Potato Soup with Dill & Bacon
by Amy Klein
adapted from Gourmet Magazine 2008

4 slices bacon
1 celery rib, coarsely chopped
1 cup coarsely chopped onion
1 1/2 pounds potatoes, scrubbed, peeled and cut into 1/2 inch cubes
3-4 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 Tablespoon fresh dill, finely chopped
salt & pepper to taste
1 Tablespoon Marx Foods Dill Pollen

Cook the bacon until crispy. Drain, chop, and set aside. Pour the used bacon fat into a large (3-4 quart) saucepan, turn the heat to medium and add the celery and onion. Cook, stirring occasionally, until translucent. Add half the potatoes, and enough stock to cover, (about 2 cups). Bring to a boil, then reduce the heat, add the fresh dill, salt and pepper to taste and simmer for about 45 minutes or until potatoes are cooked through.

Transfer the potato mixture to a blender and puree until smooth. Return the mixture to the saucepan, add the other half of the potatoes,the chopped bacon and the rest of the stock to the saucepan and simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the potato chunks are cooked through. Pour into serving bowls and garnish with the dill pollen.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Scallops in Saffron-Tarragon Broth



Scallops in Saffron-Tarragon Broth 
by Ben Ellis
adapted from Eating Well

I have always been a bit terrified of scallops. I thought they would be really hard to make, so when I saw this recipe, I had to give it a shot. After all, it's not too often that I get to work with saffron and scallops, two ingredients I've never used before! This recipe was super easy and wicked delicious, a perfect meal on a cold rainy day. 

1 pound large dry sea scallops 
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 stalks celery, thinly sliced
1/2 cup finely diced shallots
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1/4 cup white wine
8 ounces baby red potatoes, cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
1 cup reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 5-ounce can tomato juice
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 teaspoon Marx Foods Sargol Saffron Threads
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon 

1) Pat the scallops dry and lightly sprinkle each side with sea salt. In a non stick pan, heat the oil over high heat. Add the scallops and brown on each side (usually that takes about 2 minutes). Take the scallops out of the pan and set aside. Lower the heat to medium-high, add the celery, shallots and garlic. Cook for a few minutes, then add the wine and let simmer for a minute. Next, add the potatoes, broth, tomato juice, tomatoes and saffron. Bring to a boil for a minute or two. Reduce the heat and let simmer for 15 minutes, until the tomatoes have broken down and the saffron have added that yellowish color.

2) Put the scallops back in the pan with any juices that they have produced . Add the tarragon, cover the pan, and let cook for 2-4 minutes, until the scallops are cooked through.

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Salted Caramel "Ding Dong" Cake


Sometimes I get these fanciful ideas in my head -- like the notion that I went through more than one semester of baking classes or that I had proper pastry training when I prepared desserts for a local restaurant many years ago.  Truth is, my baking is always part recipe and part prayer, like so many home cooks. Bon Appetit brought this recipe to my Facebook page and I gave in to my gluttonous lust for salty caramel and gave it a whirl at home, using the Tahitian vanilla beans from our Marx Foods Challenge. One note before you even start--this is an all day affair, and it's recommended that you let the cake sit overnight before topping it with the final layer of ganache, so make room on schedule to accommodate a good amount of--mostly inactive--prep time.


Salted Caramel 'Ding Dong' Cake
adapted from Bon Appetit

Nonstick vegetable oil spray
1 cup natural unsweetened cocoa powder
4 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 cup hot strong coffee
3/4 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
2 cups cake flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon kosher salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
3 large eggs

Caramel Ganache ingredients:
9 ounces semisweet or bittersweet chocolate, chopped
1 1/8 teaspoons kosher salt
1 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Filling and Assembly ingredients
1 1/4 teaspoons unflavored gelatin
1 1/2 cups chilled heavy cream
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Marx Foods Tahitian Vanilla Bean, split lengthwise
Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)

Special equipment
Two 9-inch-diameter cake pans with 2-inch-high sides; a 9-inch-diameter springform pan

Cake:
Preheat the oven to 350°. Coat the cake pans with nonstick spray, line the bottom of the pans with parchment-paper rounds and then spray the paper with more nonstick spray. Putthe cocoa powder and chocolate in a medium bowl and pour the hot coffee over. Let stand for 1 minute then stir, making sure there are no lumps. Add the buttermilk and vanilla and put the bowl aside. 


Whisk the cake flour, baking soda, baking powder in salt together in a bowl. Using an electric mixer, cream the sugar and butter in a large bowl until light and fluffy. Add in the eggs one at a time, mixing fully between additions. Scrape down the sides of the bowl if needed. Beat until light and fluffy. Add the dry ingredients to this bowl in 3 additions, alternating with the chocolate mixture in 2 additions. Begin and end with the dry ingredients. Divide the batter evenly between the pans and smooth the tops with an offset spatula.

Bake the cakes until a tester inserted into the centers comes out clean, about 35 minutes. Transfer to wire racks and let the cakes cool for about 10 minutes (they will deflate slightly). Run a butter knife around the pans to loosen the cakes and invert the cakes ontothe racks. Peel off the parchment and let the cakes cool completely. Flip the cakes over.

If needed, trim the cakes--using a long serrated knife--to remove any bumps or imperfections.

Caramel Ganache:
Put the chocolate and salt in a medium bowl. Stir the sugar and 1/4 cup water in a medium deep saucepan over medium-low heat until the sugar dissolves. Increase the heat to medium and cook without stirring. Swirl the pan occasionally and brush down the sides with a wet pastry brush. Cook until rich amber in color, about 9 minutes. Remove from the heat and gradually add the cream (the mixture will bubble a lot). Stir over medium heat until the bits dissolve. Pour over the chocolate in the bowl and add the vanilla. Stir until the mixture is smooth then cool slightly.

Place 1 cake layer in a springform pan then  pour 1 cup of ganache over. Chill inthe refrigerator until set, about 30 minutes. Cover the remaining ganache with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature on the counter.

Filling and Assembly:
Place 2 tablespoons of cold water in a small heatproof metal bowl and sprinkle the gelatin over. Let stand until the gelatin softens, around 10 minutes.

Pour a bit of water-- around a 1/2-inch--into a small skillet set over medium heat. Transferthe bowl with the gelatin to the skillet. Stir until the gelatin completely dissolves, about 2 minutes. Remove the bowl from the skillet and set aside.

Place the chilled cream and powdered sugar in a large bowl and scrape in the seeds fromthe vanilla bean. Beat the cream until soft peaks form and add the gelatin. Beat the mixture until stiff peaks form.

Spoon the cream filling over the chilled ganache on the cake layer in the pan and smooth down the top. Very gently, place the second cake layer on top. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and chill until the cream layer is set, at least 6 hour--but, overnight is preferred.

Remove sides from springform pan. Using a knife or offset spatula, scrape off any filling that may have leaked out from between cakes and form smooth sides. Transfer cake to a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet.

Rewarm the remaining ganache until just warm. (I set a metal bowl over a large saucepan of simmering water until just warm, not hot.) Pour the ganache over the cake, using an offset spatula to help spread the ganache, if needed, to cover the sides of the cake. Chill until the ganache is set.

(The cake can be made 2 days ahead.)

Sprinkle the cake with flaky sea salt.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Peppery Cottage Cheese & Dill Pollen As Is or As Dip



I love cottage cheese with tons of black pepper. Love it, always have. And I add a pinch of coarse salt as well and wow, I just love it. I added some spinach to the plate and I thought about dill.  So I tried it. Yup! I still love it!

I really wanted to share this with the 37 Cooks' readers. 


Do you have conversations with yourself? I do. And the conversation was something like this:
Me: Is putting a little dill on cottage cheese really a recipe?
Me: No.
Me: It kind of is.
Me: Not really.
Me: I don't care care, I love it! I'm sharing it anyway!

At the last minute, before I shnarfed* it all down, I decided to add it all to the food processor (not the plate, just the contents!), and blend it and serve it with some raw vegetables as a dip. Delicious.




Peppery Cottage Cheese & Dill Pollen As Is or As Dip
by Sandra Simmons

2/3 cup cottage cheese
1/8 teaspoon coarse salt
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
1/8 teaspoon Marx Foods Dill Pollen
a handful of spinach leaves
assorted fresh vegetables, washed and cut, for dipping

Not everyone loves pepper as much as I do. If you're one of those folks, cut the amount of black pepper in half and you can adjust it after you combine the ingredients.

For As Is:
Mix the first four ingredients together. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Serve over fresh spinach.

For As Dip:
Place the first five ingredients in the food processor and run on high until the dip is smooth. Taste and adjust seasoning, if necessary. Serve with veggies.

*Shnarf - don't look it up. I'll tell you right now, it's Swiss for eat like Cookie Monster. It was passed down in my family. You believe me, right?



Monday, January 21, 2013

Dill & Garlic Roasted Potatoes with Romesco Sauce

From now through February 15, our cooks will delight you with the rest of the the Marx recipes they've prepared. Bon Appetit! ~37 Cooks


Dill & Garlic Roasted Potatoes with Romesco Sauce
by Amy Klein

Dill & Garlic Roasted Potatoes:
1 pound peeled and quartered potatoes
1 clove garlic, grated
1 teaspoon fresh dill, finely chopped
2 teaspoons Marx Foods Dill Pollen
1-2 Tablespoons olive oil
salt & pepper

Romesco Sauce:
1 tomato, peeled, quartered and seeded
1 garlic clove, chopped
1/4 cup white wine
2 Marx Foods Dried Puya Chilies
1/4 cup roasted red peppers from a jar, drained and chopped
1/4 cup almonds
2 Tablespoons olive oil
salt to taste

Toss the potatoes with the grated garlic, fresh dill, 1 teaspoon of dill pollen, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Lay the potatoes on a baking sheet and roast for about 30 minutes at 350F, or until the potatoes are browned and easily pierced with a fork.

Meanwhile, make the Romesco sauce:
Place the tomato, garlic, white wine and Puya peppers in a small saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, then turn down the heat to low and simmer until the mixture is reduced by half. Remove from the heat. Remove the Puya peppers and let cool.

Transfer the tomato mixture into a food processor. Add the peppers, oil and almonds and blend until you have a course puree. Transfer to a small bowl and add salt to taste.

Place the Romesco sauce on a platter, arrange the roasted potatoes on top and garnish with 1 teaspoon of dill pollen.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Intentional and Emergency English Muffins!




Emergency! Power Failure Bread on the Griddle (and English Muffins)

When I lived in the woods in New England, our power lines were, shall we say, vulnerable to passing squirrels and dropping tree limbs. One nasty storm took away our power just as I was about to bake a risen loaf of bread in the now powerless and non-working electric oven.

Necessity is the mother of invention, right? I had nothing to lose, I thought, so I’d at least try to cook the stuff on the propane stovetop. Let’s see, loaf is too big, make it smaller, about the size of … oh, muffins. Have to make sure they don’t stick, so they can be turned over. The heat will have to be lower than that for pancakes, they’re thicker.

The joke was on me: I learned that out of my power failure driven need I had re-discovered the classical method of making English Muffins. So I’ll begin with the “How do you rescue the bread dough” and then at the end I’ll write down my own list of ingredients for the muffins I make on purpose, whether the power is on or off.

Method for Emergency Muffins

1) Curse at the power failure. Find candles, light them, and mutter. Keep the matches handy, you’ll need ‘em to light your burners. 

2) Dump the dough out of its pan onto a floured surface. Knock it down, knead it yet one more time, and divide it into 6 to 8 pieces. Roll each piece into something vaguely spherical.

3) Set out a sheet of waxed paper, spread it with cornmeal. Now flatten each lump of dough on the cornmeal. Flatten it to about a half-inch thick – really mash it down. Sprinkle the tops with a bit more cornmeal. Let these rest 20 minutes or so, enough so that they’re puffy.

4) Light two gas burners (thank goodness for propane stoves!). Set a cast iron griddle over the burners – or if you don’t have a big griddle, use two cast iron skillets. Use medium to low heat, and let the cast iron get hot.

5) Sprinkle the cooking surface with a little cornmeal. With a thin spatula, transfer each dough round to the hot griddle. Let the dough cook 10-15 minutes. It will get crusty and brown, this is good. The thicker the muffins, the lower the heat should be.
 
6) When the bottoms are quite brown, turn the muffins and cook the other side 10-15 minutes.

To help in checking for doneness: the muffins should not be doughy on the inside, a toothpick stuck in from the side should come out clean. If you’re used to thumping the underside of a cooked loaf, you can do that with the muffins, too. Remember that the sound will be higher since they are essentially tiny loaves.

Let them cool on a rack. They’ll taste their best when split and toasted, and served with butter and jam or honey.

My Ingredient List for Intentional Muffins

When I want to make English Muffins (and these are good enough not to wait for a power failure) I like to get up early and make them fresh for breakfast. Over-proofing (letting them rise until the yeast is all used up, and the dough falls back) contributes to the texture and flavor of the muffins.

1 Tablespoon yeast
2 Tablespoons plus 1 cup warm water
1/2 cup warmed milk
2 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
4 cup flour
3 Tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
cornmeal as needed

In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in 2 tablespoons of warm water. Set aside, and let proof for 5 minutes. Combine the milk, remaining water, sugar & salt in a mixing bowl, add the yeast mix and 2 cups of flour. Cover and let rise until risen and collapsed back into bowl, about 1 1/2 hours. (To let it rise overnight, reduce the yeast used.)

When risen, beat in the butter and the remaining flour. Proceed as above starting at step 2.