Tag Archives | Summer 2014 Recipes

Charred Radicchio & Endive Salad with Fried Goat Cheese

Serves 4

Recipe courtesy of George Sabatino

1 tablespoon canola oil
1 small head radicchio, cut in half
1 small head Belgian endive, cut in half
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
3 tablespoons honey
Kosher salt
1 cup sugar snap peas, sliced thin
½ cup basil leaves, chopped
¼ cup mint leaves, chopped
½ cup pine nuts, toasted and chopped

Heat a large cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add the canola oil. When the oil is shimmering but not smoking, add the radicchio and endive, cut side down, and cook until brown and charred at the edges, about 3 minutes. Let cool, and slice, removing and discarding the cores.

In a mixing bowl, combine the olive oil, lemon juice, and honey and whisk well. Season to taste with salt. Add the charred radicchio, charred endive, snap peas, basil, mint and pine nuts. Top with Panko Crusted Goat Cheese (recipe follows) and drizzle with Roasted Garlic and Tomato Vinaigrette (recipe follows).

PANKO CRUSTED GOAT CHEESE

4 ounces goat cheese, sliced into 8 rounds
3 cups panko bread crumbs
1 tablespoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon zest
2 tablespoons orange zest
Canola oil

Using your hands, press each piece of goat cheese into a round, flat disk, compressing it to stop it from crumbling and pressing until smooth and uniform. Arrange the cheese on a plastic-wrap-lined plate and refrigerate until firm, about 1 hour.

Combine the panko, salt, pepper, lemon zest and orange zest in a wide, shallow bowl and set aside. Press the goat cheese disks into this mixture, pressing to make sure the mixture sticks.

Film the bottom of a nonstick or cast iron pan with canola oil and heat until the oil is shimmering but not smoking. Arrange the goat cheese disks in a single layer and fry until golden brown on both sides, about 2 to 4 minutes per side.

ROASTED GARLIC AND TOMATO VINAIGRETTE

Serves 4

1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
¼ cup roasted garlic
½ cup basil leaves, chopped
¼ cup lemon juice
½ cup canola oil
¼ cup olive oil
Kosher salt

Place tomatoes, garlic, basil, and lemon juice in a blender. Mix on high speed until a smooth red purée forms, about 2 minutes. Lower the blender speed, and slowly add the canola and olive oils until the vinaigrette is smooth. Season to taste with salt and reserve. (You’ll have leftover dressing: It keeps up to a week in the refrigerator.)

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Charred Eggplant Dip

Eggplants are in season in summer, a time of year that, because of the convenience of an outdoor grill, allows for a kind of smoky cooking that just wouldn’t fly indoors in a city kitchen. For me, charring eggplants is a prime example. Left whole and laid on a hot grill to blister and blacken, eggplants give up an astonishing amount of liquid and their bouncy flesh slumps into silkiness. This dish, a twist on a classic baba ghanoush, is great to begin with a grill still hot from cooking another meal. Char a few eggplants and you’re a few steps away from this satisfying spread.

2 large eggplants, any type (about pound)
Juice of one lemon (2–3 tablespoons)
1 small red onion, diced finely
2 cloves garlic, grated finely
¼ cup tahini
½ teaspoon salt
Olive oil
1/3 cup fresh parsley, basil or mint (or a mix of the three)
Crusty bread or pita or sliced cucumber, to serve

Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to high heat. Lay eggplants, whole and unadorned, directly onto grates. Grill, turning occasionally with tongs, about 20 minutes or until the skin appears well charred and the eggplants are beginning to slump. Remove to a colander set into a bowl and allow to cool.

While eggplant cooks and cools, prepare garlic and cut red onion into a fine dice. Add lemon juice to red onion to mellow flavor and allow to marinate.

Once eggplants have completely cooled, hold by the stem and remove peel in strips. Add eggplant flesh to a food processor with tahini, garlic and salt. Drain lemon juice from onion and add, reserving onion. Pulse until a uniform, chunky paste forms, adding olive oil as needed to thin.

Remove to a bowl and fold in onion and fresh herbs. Drizzle with more olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Serve with crusty bread, pita or cucumber chips.

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Indian-Inspired Eggplant Curry

It might seem daunting to cook a curry on a hot summer day, but this one is worth it. Tomatoes provide sauciness and eggplant soaks up the flavors of ginger, chili and spices. Good the first day served with rice or flatbread, it’s even better as it sits. Plus, it freezes easily, so it’s a great fit next time you find yourself overwhelmed by eggplant!

2–3 narrow Asian eggplants, or about 1 pound mini eggplants
2 tablespoons clarified butter or vegetable oil
3/4 teaspoon ground turmeric
1 teaspoon whole cumin seeds
1 teaspoon ground coriander
½ teaspoon mustard seeds
1 teaspoon garam masala
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon ginger, finely chopped
2 fresh chili peppers, minced
1 teaspoon salt
2 large tomatoes, chopped
Rice, to serve
Fresh cilantro, to serve (optional)
Fresh lemon juice

Trim stems from eggplant and halve if using baby eggplant, or slice into half-moons if using long Asian eggplants.

Heat oil or clarified butter in a large, heavy pot over medium high.

Add turmeric, cumin, ground coriander, mustard seeds and garam masala. Spices will foam and seeds will pop. Stir until fragrant, about 30 seconds, and then add onion, garlic, ginger and chili. Cook stirring, over medium heat, until onion appears golden.

Add eggplant and salt and stir to coat. Cook until eggplant begins soften and release moisture, about 5 minutes. Add tomatoes, stir and cover. Reduce heat to medium low and simmer mixture together until all ingredients are softened. If curry appears too wet, remove cover and continue to cook until pleasantly chunky.

Serve with rice, topped, if you like, with chopped cilantro and a squeeze of fresh lemon juice.

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Balsamic Grilled Eggplant with Feta, Parsley and Mint

An eggplant recipe for the days when you just want for it to cook itself, this one takes advantage of eggplant’s ability to soak up flavor by marinating it in a vinaigrette before sending it to the grill to pick up some nice smokiness. Finish it off with a shower of tangy cheese and some fresh herbs and it’s better than a salad.

1 large globe eggplant
1 teaspoon honey
¼ cup balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
½ cup olive oil
Black pepper, freshly ground
Salt
Canola or vegetable oil (to season grill)
½ cup feta cheese, crumbled
1 handful each of parsley and mint

Slice eggplant into ½-inch slices. If you’re working with thin eggplants, cut on the bias to yield long planks instead of small rounds.

In a wide, shallow dish, whisk together the honey, balsamic vinegar, garlic and olive oil until emulsified and season to taste with black pepper and salt. Lay eggplant slices in vinaigrette, turning to coat.

Cover and refrigerate, marinating overnight or for at least 3 hours.

Preheat a gas or charcoal grill to high heat and brush grates with vegetable oil. Lay eggplant slices on grill and allow to cook 3–4 minutes, covered, until nicely browned and softening; flip slices and repeat.

Remove eggplant and sprinkle with feta. Roughly chop mint and parsley and sprinkle over.

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