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Caramelized Onion and Pepper Relish

We are all still basking in the fading glow of summer. Grills are still being called into service on a regular basis. Chicken, pork, fish, and beef proudly take to the grill. We all know that grilled protein is delicious, but sometimes it can feel a bit under-dressed on the plate.

There are lots of ways to make them feel a little more complete and this relish is one colorful alternative. It can be viewed as the bright colors of summer or the tones of the changing leaves of fall. Whatever your perspective it is a tasty addition to a meal.

I must confess that this came about as a result of a refrigerator clean-out mission. Mini bell peppers, and started red and sweet onions were all languishing in the crisper. The slow and aromatic caramelizing process came to mind. This does take some time ; 40 minutes give or take, but the depth of flavor is definitely worth it.

I brought some other bold flavors to the mix in the form of garlic, red pepper flakes, thyme, and sherry vinegar. I also added several serious glugs of dry sherry and a dollop of honey. Salt and pepper were added throughout the process. The acidity created by the vinegar gave it enough bite to qualify as a relish in my book and the petite sirloin it topped was very happy indeed.

 

Carmelized Onion and Pepper Relish
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Carmelized Onion and Pepper Relish
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Heat oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and spread over the bottom of the pan. Cook for 20 minutes stirring every 5 minutes.
  2. Add the peppers, garlic, and red pepper flakes to the pan. Toss to combine and cook for another 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. Add the dry sherry and the thyme sprigs to the skillet and continue to cook for another 5 - 10 minutes.
  4. One everything looks beautifully golden, stir in the vinegar and honey and allow it all to cook a few minutes more.
  5. Remove the thyme sprigs (many of the leaves will remain in the relish) and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve warm with your grilled protein of choice.
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Springtime Ham Soup

Springtime Ham Soup
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Springtime Ham Soup
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Heat the olive oil in a large soup pot. Add the leeks carrots, and garlic tossing to coat them with the oil. Add a pinch of salt and cover the pot. Allow the vegetables to sweat for 5 - 7 minutes.
  2. Add the Ham Broth and the thyme leaves to the pot. Cover and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer covered for 20 - 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  3. At this point you can remove the thyme sprigs as the leaves have probably fallen off and the sprigs have done their flavor magic. Add the sweet potatoes and corn and simmer 20 minutes more or until the sweet potatoes are tender.
  4. While the soup is simmering, blanch the snow peas and haricot vert. Put them in boiling water briefly, then remove them to a bowl of ice water. When they are cold drain them well. This will leave them tender crisp and bright green. Set them aside.
  5. When the soup is done, taste it and add salt and pepper as needed. Place a few haricot vert and snow peas into each soup bowl. Ladle the soup into the bowls and serve.
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Turkey Divan

Turkey Divan
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This is a rich and hearty casserole that works just as well with chicken.
Servings
3
Servings
3
Turkey Divan
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This is a rich and hearty casserole that works just as well with chicken.
Servings
3
Servings
3
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. Blanch and shock the broccoli: Cook the florets in boiling salted water for about 1 minute. Remove to a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking. Drain well, pat dry, and place in a single layer in a baking dish that has been lightly coated with cooking spray.
  2. Layer the turkey on top of the broccoli.
  3. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil together. Add the mushrooms. shallot, and garlic and cook stirring frequently until everything is soft and fragrant. This should take 5 - 7 minutes.
  4. Add the sherry to the pan and sprinkle the flour in as well. Whisk constantly to keep things smooth and allow to cook for 2 minutes. You will have a thick ball of stuff.
  5. Add the stock and milk a little at a time as you continue to whisk. The goal is to get all the liquid incorporated without creating lumps. Bring to a boil.
  6. Reduce the heat slightly and continue to cook and stir until the mixture thickens, about 4 - 5 minutes. Stir in the mustard and herbs. Remove the pan from the heat.
  7. Add about half of the grated Swiss cheese and stir until it melts Taste and add salt and pepper as needed. Pour the sauce over the broccoli and turkey.
  8. Combine the remaining Swiss Cheese with the Parmesan and panko crumbs. You can add a drizzle of olive oil if it seems too dry.
  9. Sprinkle the crumb mixture evenly over the casserole. Spray lightly with cooking spray and bake at 350 degrees for 30 -35 minutes. The crust should be golden and everything else should be bubbly.
  10. Allow to rest for 5 minutes or so before serving.
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Green Bean Salad with Warm Bacon Shallot and Garlic Dressing

Green Bean Salad with Warm Bacon Shallot and Garlic Dressing
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Green Bean Salad with Warm Bacon Shallot and Garlic Dressing
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. In a large pot, bring a good amount of salted water to boil. Add the green beans and cook for 3 - 4 minutes (they should be just barely tender and quite crisp).
  2. Drain the beans and place in a bowl of ice water. Stir to cool as quickly as possible. Drain well and store in the refrigerator while you make the dressing.
  3. Chop the bacon and cook it in a small skillet until it is crisp. Remove the bacon and drain on a paper towel. Pour off all of the drippings but leave the browned bits.
  4. Add the olive oil to the pan and let it get hot. Add the shallots and cook for 3 minutes or so until they begin to turn golden.
  5. Add the garlic and cook another 2 minutes, stirring often.
  6. Add the vinegar and reduce the heat to low. Let the dressing simmer for a few minutes. Check the flavor and add salt and pepper if needed.
  7. Put the beans in a serving bowl. Add the dressing and toss to coat. Sprinkle the reserved bacon on the top and serve.
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Grilled More Vegetable Than Potato Salad

DIGITAL CAMERAThis lovely plate of vegetables can transform into a delicious grilled side dish that is perfect with any grilled meat ,poultry,  or fish.DIGITAL CAMERA

Grilled More Vegetable Than Potato Salad
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Grilled More Vegetable Than Potato Salad
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Servings
4
Servings
4
Ingredients
Servings:
Instructions
  1. To make the garlic oil: Place olive oil and smashed garlic cloves in a small pan. Cook over low heat until the garlic is lightly browned and the oil has become fragrant. Allow to cool before removing the garlic. (use the garlic in marinades or as a seasoning)
  2. Precook the potatoes: Cut the potatoes into 1 inch chunks. In Place the potatoes and a little water in a microwave friendly container. Cover loosely and steam in the microwave for 4 minutes or so. The potatoes should be barely tender. Set aside to cool.
  3. Prepare the veggies for the grill: Slice the squash in 1/2 inch thick diagonal slices. Trim the ends off of the beans. Cut the onion in half lengthwise. Halve or quarter the peppers.
  4. Heat a grilling basket and a flat grate on the grill. Coat with olive oil cooking spray. Take 1/2 tablespoon of the infused olive oil and toss with the potato chunks. Use the rest of the oil to brush the vegetable slices.
  5. Put the potatoes in the basket and the vegetables on the grate. Grill, tossing the potatoes and turning the vegetables occasionally. It should take about 15 minutes to have everything turn golden.
  6. Remove the vegetables to a cutting board. Cut in chunks that are about the same size as the potatoes. Place in a large serving bowl along with the potato chunks.
  7. Add some freshly ground pepper and a pinch of salt and toss to combine everything. Drizzle the balsamic over everything and enjoy!
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