Saturday, May 27, 2017

Saturday Recipe

I have no idea what Freekeh is - Googled it, appears to be wheat. Farro I have used but from what I read Freekeh is the new superfood.

Roasted Asparagus and Scallion Salad

In this hearty, many-textured salad, soft, roasted asparagus is tossed with chewy whole grains and crisp, sweet caramelized scallions. You can use freekeh or farro here for the grains. Both are whole-wheat kernels, but the freekeh has a slightly smoky note from being toasted, while the farro is nuttier-tasting. You can prepare the freekeh or farro ahead and let it marinate in the dressing for up to six hours, but it’s best to roast the asparagus and scallions within an hour of serving. Don’t use pecorino
Romano here, it’s too sharp. If you can’t find a young pecorino, use a young manchego or even a nice Cheddar, and serve this as a light main course or a salad course to a more substantial meal.

Kosher salt, as needed
¼ cup freekeh or farro
2 ½ tsp soy sauce
2 tsp lime juice
1 small garlic clove, grated on a Microplane or minced
Fine sea salt and black pepper, to taste
3 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil, more as needed
1 bunch asparagus (1 pound), woody ends trimmed
1 bunch scallions (about 5 ounces), halved lengthwise and crosswise to form 2-inch-long ribbons
3 oz (3 cups) salad greens, such as baby arugula
Pecorino Rossellino or other young sheep’s milk cheese, as needed (optional

1. Bring a small pot of heavily salted water to a boil, stir in freekeh or farro, cover, and simmer until al dente, 20 to 30 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together 2 teaspoons soy sauce, lime juice, garlic, and pinch salt and pepper. Drizzle in 3 tablespoons oil, whisking constantly.

3. Drain freekeh and stir immediately into dressing while still warm.

4. Heat oven to 425°F. Spread asparagus and scallions over a rimmed baking sheet and drizzle liberally with oil, 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce and a pinch of salt and pepper. Toss to combine, then arrange in a single layer. Roast until they start to char in spots, about 20 minutes. Let cool slightly: The asparagus are best while still a little warm but not hot enough to wilt the greens.

5. Toss salad greens in the bowl with freekeh and dressing until leaves are coated, and transfer to serving platter. Top with roasted asparagus and scallions, shave cheese over salad if you like, and serve.

Servings: 2 - 4

Source: The New York Times

Have a great weekend

Friday, May 26, 2017

Different Foods-Countries, Bowling, Steaks,

Talking about spinach salad yesterday it occurred to me that I had never had spinach in a salad before I emigrated to Canada. Only ever had it cooked. Then I thought of beet greens, didn't even know they were edible before I came here. I have recently found out that you can eat radish greens too, I tried a little and wasn't a convert much as I like radishes. Another thing I had never had was a sweet jellied salad with my main meal, aspic salads, yes, but not some of the things which were dished up to us when we first came to Canada. I have never enjoyed sweet jellied salads with savoury foods. I have never made anything in aspic myself but my mother, who was a brilliant cook, often used to make things in aspic which were delicious. We used to joke that my mother could cook anything but she couldn't pronounce the name of it. I wonder if some of these foods are eaten in the UK these days? Hilary, if you are reading this, that's a question for you to answer please, or anyone else from the UK. Another thing I had never eaten was squash, we have/had marrow in the UK which I have since discovered classifies as a squash but things like butternut squash and so on I had never heard of.

Bowling was absolutely dreadful Thursday. Matt had one good game, I didn't. Blaming my aching legs which really didn't have anything to do with it. Afterwards we went and bought some very expensive fillet steaks from the Victoria St. Market which I hope will be tender enough for Matt. I get so tired of serving him meat which he finds too tough. Hopefully these will be OK for him. Mind you, if they are, we probably can't afford them very often from there.They are wet aged so I will be interested to see what the result of that will be.

We finished the spinach salad on Thursday night but this time I added some avocado which made it even better.

This recipe was in Kevin Lynch's Closet Kitchen blog and, because of the asparagus, not to mention the spinach, I decided to use it today. One thing we do not have is a barbecue, the reason being because we live in an apartment building. Not sure if we could use our indoor outdoor grill.

Grilled Chicken and Asparagus Caprese Spinach Salad with Bacon and Avocado

A hearty summer grilled chicken and asparagus spinach 'caprese' salad with tomatoes, mozzarella, basil and a balsamic vinaigrette along with some bacon and avocado!

  • 1/2 pound boneless and skinless chicken breast
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 pound asparagus, washed and trimmed
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 4 strips bacon, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 6 cups baby spinach, washed
  • 8 ounces tomatoes, diced
  • 8 ounces mini bocconcini or mozzarella balls
  • 1 large avocado, diced
  • 1/4 balsamic vinaigrette
  • 1/4 cup basil, sliced
  1. Season the chicken with salt and pepper and grill over medium-high heat until cooked, about 3-5 minutes per side before setting aside.
  2. Toss the asparagus spears in the oil, salt and pepper and grill over medium-high heat until crisp-tender and slightly charred before setting aside to cool and slicing into bite sized pieces.
  3. Meanwhile, cook the bacon until crispy and set aside on paper to els to drain.
  4. Mix all of the ingredients and enjoy!

OptionFor One-Pan: Make this a one-pan meal by cooking/pan-searing/pan-grilling the bacon in a pan, followed by the chicken, followed by the asparagus.
Option: Cook the bacon before hand to speed things up and to allow you to do all of the cooking at the grill.

Have a great day