Archive for ‘Cheese’

August 9, 2012

Artichoke, Goat Cheese, Sweet Pea, and Mint Ravioli with Lemon Chive Butter Sauce

More ravioli from Eastern Market! Again, the sauce is versatile: you can use any type of pasta you want!

Tip: If you don’t have a grater, you can shave the Parmigiano-Reggiano with a peeler.

Time: 15 minutes

Serves 4

  • Pasta, of choice
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • small bunch of fresh chives, finely chopped
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Cook the pasta.

2. While your pasta cooks, melt butter over medium-high heat; cook until golden brown.

3. Add chives and remove from heat. Add lemon juice and set aside.

4. Drain the pasta, but leaving some cooking water, and gently pour into saute pan and return to heat.

5. Add the cheese, toss to coat, season with salt and pepper, and serve immediately.

Happy Eating!

Love,

Yang

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August 9, 2012

Roasted Eggplant and Heirloom Tomato Stacks with Pesto and Feta

This is a delicious Greek-Mediterranean fusion recipe that features the beautiful produce of summer. Since there are so few ingredients in this recipe, make sure that each ingredient is the freshest and best quality you can find! Be careful not to over-season, since the feta is naturally salty. Although this is best eaten right away, you can make a big batch and store in the fridge for about a week. This would be great in a sandwich or wrap for a weekday lunch or as a quick snack.

 

Time: 30 minutes

Serves 4

Adapted from Gluten-Free Veggie Gourmet

  • Olive oil
  • Basil Pesto
  • 2 medium eggplants
  • 3 large tomatoes
  • 3 oz feta, crumbled (about 3/4 cup), more if you desire
  • Garnish: finely shredded fresh basil leaves

 

1. Preheat oven to 450F and line a baking pan with foil.

2. Cut off bottoms of eggplants, then cut 1/4″ thick crosswise rounds. Cut 1/3” thick rounds from the tomatoes.

Gorgeous heirloom tomatoes from DC’s Eastern Market

3. On baking pan, arrange the eggplant rounds side by side. Lightly brush eggplant rounds on both sides with olive oil to keep the eggplant moist and to prevent it from sticking to the foil. Season with a little salt and pepper. Roast in the oven for 8 minutes.


4. Spread each eggplant round with pesto, then top each with the largest tomato rounds. Top the tomato rounds with feta. Make another layer with eggplant rounds, pesto, tomato rounds, and feta, then top with remaining eggplant and feta.

Roasted eggplant

Stacks on stacks on stacks!

5. Roast in the oven for about 10 minutes, until heated through and cheese on top is softened. Transfer stacks to 4 plates and drizzle plates with olive oil, salt, and pepper, to taste.

Happy Eating!

 

Love,

Yang

August 9, 2012

Basil Pesto

Basil pesto is a staple everyone should know how to make: it’s versatile (put it on eggs, pasta, risotto, fresh vegetables, chicken, sandwiches, wraps, stir it in a soup, etc.), it’s delicious, and it’s EASY!

Tip: Fresh pesto will keep in the refrigerator for a week or two. You can also make a big batch and freeze it for several months in ice cube trays. Use the pesto “cubes” as needed. If freezing, don’t stir in the cheese; stir in the cheese by hand just before serving.

Time: 5-15 minutes

Makes about 1 cup

Adapted from Mark Bittman, How to Cook Everything

  • 2 loosely packed cups fresh basil leaves, big stems discarded, rinsed and dried
  • ½ to 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts or walnuts, lightly toasted in a dry skillet
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, or more
  • ½ cup freshly grated Parmesan or other hard cheese (optional)
  • salt, to taste

1. Combine the basil, salt, garlic, nuts and about half the oil in a food processor or blender (or mortar and pestle).

Pine nuts

Toasted pine nuts

Quality extra virgin olive oil

2. Process, stopping to scrape down the sides of the container occasionally, and adding the rest of the oil gradually. Add additional oil if you prefer a thinner mixture.

Pesto!

3. Stir in the parmesan by hand just before serving.

Happy Eating!

Love,

Yang

August 6, 2012

Pumpkin Ravioli with Sage Brown Butter

Ok, I didn’t make this pasta (it’s from DC’s Eastern Market), but it’s fresh! This is a delicious and comforting fall recipe and it can also be a quick weeknight recipe because it’s versatile: you can use any type of pasta you want!

Tip: If you don’t have a grater, you can shave the Parmigiano-Reggiano with a peeler.

Time: 15 minutes

Serves 4

Adapted from Mario Batali

  • Pasta, of choice
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 8 sage leaves
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced
  • 1/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

1. Cook the pasta.

2. While your pasta cooks, melt butter in a saute pan and continue cooking until golden brown color appears in the thinnest liquid of the butter.

3. Add sage leaves and remove from heat. Add lemon juice and set aside.

4. Drain the pasta, but leaving some cooking water, and gently pour into saute pan and return to heat.

5. Add the cheese, toss to coat, season with salt and pepper, and serve immediately.

Happy Eating!

Love,

Yang

July 9, 2012

Eggs, Greens, and Tomatoes

This recipe is less of a recipe than it is a concept. That is, once you know the basics, you can go to town, or as I’ll mention below, places around the world!

The concept is this, and it is easier than you might expect:

Eggs + veggies + additional toppings/spices = a fast, delicious, and healthy meal with endless combinations!

You can internationalize this, too! Add some garam masala to Indianize this culinary concept.

OR, try adding some soy sauce, Shao Hsing rice wine, Asian sesame oil, garlic, ginger, and chopped cilantro to Sinicize the concept! Whisk yourself away to Greece by adding oregano and feta for some Greek flavor, or for an Italian twist, toss in some fresh basil leaves, thyme, oregano, crushed red pepper, and mozzarella. Mamma Mia, indeed!

Other ingredients that I would highly recommend: red curry paste (or any other curry paste), caramelized onions, roasted garlic, chili oil (or any other flavored oil), Chinese 5 spice (jerk seasoning, taco seasoning, or any other seasoning blends), sriracha, harissa, different kinds of cheeses, etc.

This concept is also a great way to use up your leftovers from last night.

Try to use canola, peanut, vegetable, sunflower or other oils that do not burn at medium to high heat. Most imported olive oil has high acidity, and because of this, burns at high temperatures. Depending on the type of olive oil you use, it can burn and not only impart a bitter taste to your food but also become carcinogenic.

 

Serves 1

Time: 15 minutes

2-3 eggs

Handful or more of chard or any other dark leafy green (spinach, kale, collard greens, beet greens, sweet potato leaves, etc.)

1 ripe tomato

2 tbsp of canola oil

1 small block of pepper jack cheese (or any other cheese. Feta is also a favorite of mine)

Seasonings (any kind you want, I like Mrs. Dash’s salt-free Extra Spicy Seasoning Blend)

Salt and pepper (to taste)

 

 1. To save time, heat up your skillet at medium-high heat.

2. In the meantime, dice your tomato, chop up your chard and separate the stems from the leaves, and cut your small block of cheese into small cubes.

3. Add around 1 tbsp of canola oil to the skillet. Throw in your tomato and chard stems and let them soften for a minute or two.

4. Throw in your chard leaves and let them wilt, which should take less than a minute.

5. Set aside your chard and tomato mixture in a separate bowl or on a plate.

6. In the same skillet (no need to wash), heat 2 tbsp of canola oil at medium heat.

7. Crack 3 eggs into the skillet and let them sit for about a minute. Once the whites are no longer translucent, break the yolk and swirl them around. Now move your egg mixture around constantly until they become scrambled eggs.

8. At this point, dump in your tomato and chard mixture and stir.

9. Once all of the ingredients are well integrated, add the small bits of cheese and other seasonings and stir to combine once again.

10. After about a minute, the cheese should have melted and the seasonings should have permeated your food nicely. At this point, you can add any fresh herbs or spices, add salt and pepper to taste, do a quick toss, and serve.

Happy eating!

Love,

Yang

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