Creamy One Pot Leek, Green Onion and Crab LEEKGUINI

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Ingredients (I went on a trader joe’s spree today FYI)

  1. 1 tablespoon olive oil
  2. 1.5 teaspoons crushed garlic
  3. 2 cubes of TJ’s frozen basil cubes. If you don’t have this on hand, don’t worry, it will still be delicious without it!
  4. 4 green onions (with bulbs cut off), sliced thinly
  5. 2 leeks (white and green part, trimmed). Sliced, thinly.  I bought the TJ’s packaged leeks
  6. 1/2 can of crab meat (I bought this at TJs too)!
  7. 2 packages of (you guessed it) TJ’s spinach and chive linguini. You can sub two packages of this for one package of regular dry linguini.
  8. 4  cups chicken broth (Hey I bought this at TJs also)!
  9. 3/4 cup heavy cream
  10. Salt and pepper for seasoning
  11. 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano cheese mmmm (TJS!)

Add olive oil to big pot. Saute the leeks, basil. garlic, pinch of salt and three of the green onions until tender (6 minutes) over med heat. Add the 1/2 can of crab meat and saute for 1 min more. Add the cream, broth and pasta. Stir constantly until tender (about 12 minutes).  Add salt and pepper to taste and desired amount of cheese to finish. Garnish with remaining sliced green onion.  Make sure to either serve with a crisp dry white or squeeze with a lemon.

 

 

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Soy-ed Butter Seared Scallops, Forbidden Rice and Coconut Mint Parisian Carrots!

AKA Third Date/Whenever you want to impress with your cooking skills!

AKA Third Date/Whenever you want to impress with your cooking skills!

Soy-ed Butter Seared Scallops, Forbidden Rice and Coconut Mint Parisian Carrots!  Light while decadent, fresh while creamy, tangy and comforting, I could eat this every day of the week if needed.  This dish is pretty much FOOLPROOF, and delicious…and relatively inexpensive AND takes very little time.  Ahhh everything I love in one meal!  There are several components to this dish that can all be executed simultaneously (and effortlessly).

1) Forbidden Rice

Steps: Find it, Buy it, Cook it!

Some, but not all, of  grocery stores carry “Forbidden” aka black rice. I recently discovered that our local Whole Foods offers it in bulk (after you, Eric, so brilliantly asked a staff if they carried it while I rolled around in the aisles devastated that there were no more packages left). I’ve heard rumors that Forbidden Rice contains more antioxidants compared to other rice varieties…but I love it for its nutty flavor profile. Also, it got its name because in Ancient China,  black rice was only served to Emperors.  Cook it how you typically cook rice, my rule of thumb: 1 cup rice  to 1.5 cups water.

2) Coconut Mint Parisian Carrots

I love these little guys!  You will need 1 package of Trader Joe’s Parisian Carrots to start (they are frozen). Throw in a pot.  Add 1/2 cup Lite Coconut Milk, 1 tbs fish sauce, 1tbs soy sauce, 1tbs rice vinegar, 1tbs white sugar and a handful of mint to the pot. Cook until unfrozen (and hot) and when you start to see the sauce reduce (and hopefully caramelize a little).  Salt and Pepper to Taste.  Add  a dash more Soy Sauce, Fish sauce and Vinegar  if you would like a little stronger flavor profile.  Garnish with fresh mint.

3) Soy-ed Butter

I’ve been calling this little accoutrement “soy butter” but thanks Eric for pointing out that Soy butter indicates butter that is a healthier butter alternative. Nope!  Here is how you make my  soy-ed butter:  Melt 3 tablespoons butter in the microwave.  Add a dash (or a tablespoon, depending on how strong you want it) of soy sauce.  THE END!

4) Seared Scallops

…are like the easiest little things in the word to cook and they look REALLY challenging to prepare (bonus points)!  Heat a concoction of 1/2 butter 1/2 olive oil in a pan. I usually do 2 tbs of each butter and oil.  Make it hot.  Prepare your scallops (make sure the little feet are cut off and they are rinsed and patted dry).  Salt and pepper your scallops.  Cook for 1.5 minutes on each side (don’t forget to cook both sides)! Drizzle scallops with soy-ed butter when it is time to serve. Viola!  You are a culinary master!

As you can see from my photo, I like to lay the scallops on the rice but you can plate this however you want! Also, I know I call these “third date scallops” because they COULD hypothetically really impress someone on a third date…but we can rename it for you: Scallops ALA Finite Element Analysis to communicate your positive feelings about these perfect scallops and juicy carrots.

Ingredient Recap:

Scallops (3-5 per person)

Frozen Parisian Carrots (Trade Joes) or fresh if you can find them

Fresh Mint

Forbidden Rice (you used 2 cups dry for the two of us)

Butter (make sure you have most of a stick to complete this dish)

Lite Coconut Milk

Soy Sauce

Rice Vinegar

Fish Sauce

Sugar

Olive OIl

Marriage Advice from my Mom: Basil Lemondrop Martinis!!!

Marriage Advice from my Mom: Basil Lemondrop Martinis!!!

Some new marriage advice from my mom (and some of the best advice we’ve gotten so far)!

Teach Eric how to make you a basil lemon drop martini. While you cant sit lakeside at the cabin on a Friday evening in San Francisco… you can pretend you are back in Minnesota unwinding after a long work/school week.

I encourage you to use North Shore Vodka – lovely lovely vodka, love the name and better yet – the distillers are a husband and wife team.

You will need:
1 cup water
1cup sugar
big handful of basil leafs
a few basil stems
North Shore Vodka
lemons
ice

Mix the water and sugar together in a sauce pan, stir and try to get the sugar dissolved. Add the basil stems that you have chopped into little bits.Heat the mixture up until it simmers, giving it a stir every now and then.
When it is simmering, turn it off, add the handful of basil leaves that you have “crumpled” in your hands – this releases the flavor. Let the mixture sit for 30 minutes.
Strain the mixture – throw away the basil leaves..
You can use a paper coffee filter to strain the mixture if you like.
IIn a martini shaker – or other container –
fill container 1/2 way with ice, add 2 Tablespoons of basil simple syrup, 3 shots (3 oz) vodka and the juice of one whole lemon. Shake shake shake.
Strain, dont use the ice – serve in a small martini glass and garnish with a basil leaf.

Happy Weekend!!!

Bruschetta, my way!!!

Bruschetta, my way!!!

Bruschetta is one of those amazingly almost perfect foods (in your words Eric, “its like pizza!”).

As much as I love bruschetta, I am picky about several things:
1. The bread needs to be exceptional, hot and carrying it’s weight (or more) in olive oil
2. The tomatoes must also be exceptional and chilled (I only like tomatoes with integrity)
3. Must include sautéed onions (my other husband), strong basil (Thai basil fits the bill) and fresh mozzarella (the fresher the better)

I love this way of having bruschetta because the bread is hot, chewy, olive-oiley, the cheese is melty, the onions are cooked (and subtle) and the tomatoes are crisp, cold and delightful.

Ingredients for tonight’s bruschetta:

1 Loaf of fabulous local bread.  I expanded my typical Arizmendi repertoire (due to the ridiculous line out the door up the street and down the peninsula) and bought a Feta and Green onion loaf from the Crepe & Brioche stand at the market.  It was perfect.

2. Fresh, farmers market tomatoes. I bought some beautiful Olmeca-looking guys.

3. 1  onion

4. Handful of basil (I use Thai basil because it is stronger)

5.  1tbs butter, 1tbs olive oil

6. Fresh Mozzarella

Steps.

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees

2. Sautee onions in butter and olive oil until tender and transparent. Add  basil and sautee a minute more

3. This step is called: SLICE SOME STUFF!  Slice the bread and tomatoes on two separate cutting boards (otherwise you will get soggy bread my friend). Then slice the Mozzarella into the desired thickness (a.k.a. how much cheese you want in your mouth at one time) and put aside.

4. Place the sliced bread on a baking sheet, flat, so the guys are side by side but not on top of each other.

5. Add the basil onion mixture and then the sliced mozzarella to each piece of bread. Bake until the cheese has melted (approximately 8 minutes).

6. Add the cold tomatoes to the hot bread. Finish with cracked pepper, salt and olive oil.

xo Rosie

Cauliflower and White Truffle Soup!

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This recipe combines some of my favorite de-stressing activities including sauteing onions, using my immersion blender, fogging up my kitchen and of course: pouring truffle oil on stuff!

Time: 40ish minutes (aprx. one star trek episode)

Ingredients:

1 Sweet Yellow Onion of a largish size

2 heads of Cauliflower (med. size)

Stock of some sort (chicken or mushroom are my typical choices)

Butter and/or Olive Oil and a couple tbs of cream

TRUFFLE OIL!!!!

Something with which you can blend above ingredients

Steps

1.  Choose your own cauliflower cooking adventure!

a. Preheat oven to 375, drizzle w/ olive oil and season with salt and pepper and roast cauliflower (i taught you how to do this in the pumpkin enchiladas post) until tender.

b. Blanch cauliflower ( that means basically boil in hot water)

I prefer option a., but fyi the soup won’t be as white.

2. Saute those onions! I like to do this by melting 1tablespoon of each butter and olive oil, heating up (med-low) and pouring in sliced onions.  Season with salt and pepper and let the onions become tender and transparent.

3. Put cauliflower, onions, and 1cup-3 cups of stock into a pot (depending on how thick you like soup). Let simmer for 10ish minutes.  I

4. Blend it!  If you are lucky enough to have an immersion blender, just put it into your pot and and blend until smooth.  Otherwise, you can throw it into your blender, magic bullet or whatever you use to make solid stuff not solid.

5. If you want, you can add a couple tablespoons of cream to the mixture and blend again. Like everything on this blog, it is totally up to your taste preference.

6. Finish with TRUFFLE oil, a little sea salt and cracked pepper!  Voila!!!!!

xo Rosie

Pumpkin Enchiladas!

pumpkin enchiladas!

Pumpkin Enchiladas are so easy, healthy and delicious!!!  The secret to these super tasty little guys is replacing traditional tomato based enchilada sauce with seasoned pumpkin puree!  I know, totally genius! As low as $12 for 4 -5 servings.

Ingredients:

Veggies

Pumpkin Puree

Mexican Cheese Blend

Taco Seasoning

Corn Tortillas

Cilantro (if you want)

There are three steps to this. 1) make the filling 2) make the sauce 3) assemble and bake.

1) Filling ingredients: whatever roasted veggies you would like! My favorite combo:

Roasted Cauliflower and Poblano Pepper.  Dice, drizzle with olive oil, season with S & P and roast at 375 degrees for 30 minutes.

Sauteed onions and pinto beans.  There’s few things in life I love more than sweet yellow onions sauteed in olive oil (you are one of them babe!).  I sauteed them until they were almost clear and added  canned pinto beans.   I sauteed them for 5 minutes more.

I combined the roasted veggies and the sauteed veggies together to make the filling.

2) Pumpkin Sauce.  You are going to laugh at how ridiculously easy this sauce is to make.  Are you ready…wait for it…OKAY:

Take one box (or can) of pureed pumpkin (be careful not to buy the pumpkin pie mix with the seasoning already in it…you want pure, unseasoned pumpkin puree).  Add 1/2 packed of trader joes taco seasoning (or any taco seasoning).  Combine.  THAT’S IT!  CRAZY, RIGHT???

3)  Put the filling in corn tortillas.  Pour the pumpkin enchilada sauce over the top.  Add shredded cheese.  Bake at 365 for 15 minutes. Finish with cilantro and either sour cream, creme fraiche or plain yogurt (whatever we happen to have in the fridge).

Isn’t this recipe the best???  I’m obsessed!

xo Rosie

Cheap as @#$% “Lobster” Rolls!

I used to work in Maine as a camp counselor and became obsessed with the lobster (pronounced Lob-Stahhh) rolls…they are a delicacy! My delicacy splurges these days are limited so I created this recipe to help me curb my lobstah cravings. These are cheap as %$%*…I think it only came out to a couple bucks for each HUGE sandwich.

I’ve tried making these several different ways (with & without Mayo, etc) and I’ve found the more simple it is to make it, the better it tastes.

Ingredients:
Large French Rolls (Mine came in a 4 pack. I ate one of the rolls before I started cooking…that’s why we only had three rolls 🙂
Two packages of “Imitation Lobster Meat”. I got mine @ whole foods and it was still cheap.
7 TBS Butter
2 or 3 Lemons
1/4 to a 1/2 cup celery or fennel, depending on your flavor preference
2 Tbs fresh, chopped chives
(feel free to add fresh cilantro, basil and mint…I am obsessed with adding fresh herbs to everything including sandwiches).

You can make this Eric! All you have to do is melt the butter (I did mine in the microwave) and gently fold in the imitation lobster meat. I folded mine in too aggressively, which is why the “lobster” meat broke apart and looks like crab. Be gentle with the little guys! Add the chopped celery or fennel.  I prefer fennel but I think you prefer celery. Squeeze as much lemon juice over the mixture as you like. I am heavy handed with acid and I used 3 lemons (you may want to use two). Add the chives, salt and pepper and some dried dill if you want (to taste). Mix it gently and put it in the fridge if you are preparing ahead.

Grill the rolls with a little butter (pronounced but-tahhhh).

Put the “lobster” mixture on the hot, grilled bread. Eat it!!!!

*Leftover alert!

I had a lot of leftover “lobster” mix so I used it to make two other dishes:

~* “Lobster” quesadillas: add fresh cilantro and lime juice to the mixture.  Put in corn tortillas with some cheese (I always keep string cheese on hand for quick quesadillas).  Grill or microwave.  Drink with a margarita!

OR

~*”Lobster” Angel Hair Pasta: Add fresh basil and white wine to the “Lobster” mix. Cook the mix until the alcohol from the wine reduces.  Add the “Lobster” sauce to cooked angel hair pasta. Top with your favorite aged cheese.  Drink with the same wine you added to the mix!

xo Rosie

Beanery and Arizmendi

Beanery and Arizmendi

Coffee from the Beanery and Chocolate Sourdough Croissants from Arizmendi.

For the most perfect breakfast duo in the Inner Sunset, walk out your door and head to 9th Ave.  The Beanery hosts several changing freshly roasted coffees all carrying complex flavor profiles.  They also provide brown sugar and brown sugar simple syrup to assist in your holding the most perfect morning beverage.

Walk a few doors down and you will find yourself at Arizmendi bakery, trying to hockey-check your way to the pastry display so you can grab a sourdough chocolate croissant.  Although I am normally not a big fan of sourdough, the subtle sour introduction to the amazing marriage between the dense, heavy buttery texture and the sweet rich chocolate creates something truly profound. I’m obsessed.

xo Rosie

Watermelon, Feta and Mint Salad

Watermelon, Feta and Mint Salad

WFM Salad!

I love this salad!  It is the PERFECT date to a potluck event (impressive AND easy 😉 ).  Really easy:  you throw feta, mint, watermelon and 1 tbs of olive oil into a glass bowl and then mix it up.  THAT’S IT! I spent $6.50 making this with an entire humongo watermelon, one container of cubed feta (trader joes) and a handful of mint from the farmers market. You are welcome Eric and every engineer who Eric gives this to at a future potluck.

xo Rosie

Spring Citrus Olive Chicken with Heavenly Pea Puree and Fresh Herbs

This is the perfect San Francisco summer dish: the citrus, fresh herbs and pea puree celebrate summer flavors and produce, while the dutch oven cooking method creates the hearty meal necessary to ward of frigid July temperatures. You’ll probably need about 2 hours (you don’t need to watch the pot the whole time) and $25 (mostly for the mojitos to drink with dinner) to make this.

xo Rosie

You need:

Chicken thighs (I used three but you could get more if you want more leftovers). You could use chicken breasts but they cost 3X as much.

Olives: Get a 1/2 cup container from the olive bar at the grocery store and fill with your favorite (pitted olives).  I threw three pickled peppers in there for fun! Woo!!

Fresh Herbs: I like Mint and Basil.  But get whatever kind you like in your mouth the best.

Kumquats: A handful of these guys!

Carrots:  You know what these are! Use the kind and quantity you like!

Apricot: One of these (or a plum or two figs…whatever you want)

1 bag Frozen Peas: yay!

1 container PLAIN Greek Yogurt: I swear you’ll be sorry if you use vanilla or sweetened yogurt in your dish, bleh!

Chicken Stock: I accidentally used vegetable stock but was this still awesome? Yup!

Spices: Salt, Pepper, Dill Tumeric, Paprika (if you have tagine spices those will work well too)!

A dutch oven: or any kind of pot that can go from stove top -to- oven.

An immersion (hand) blender: Or a blender, or a magic bullet…or your arm, a fork and 10 minutes of squishing.

First, preheat the oven to 350 degrees!

1. Make a flavor paste! Throw two cloves of chopped garlic and three pinches of salt (more if you are me and like salt) into the mortar and pestle.  Mush it together until it is a paste.  Add a pinch of paprika and a pinch of tumeric (less if you are like me and don’t like strong tumeric).  Add 2 or 3 tablespoons of olive oil.  Mush it up!  I got oil all over the place when I did this, so don’t worry babe, it’s totally normal to make a mess.

2. Put it on the chicken thighs! I didn’t take a picture of this because there is nothing grosser than looking at raw chicken.  If I could do this step blind folded, I would have.

3. Sear the chicken in the Dutch Oven.  I let the D.O. heat up on the stove with some oil before I added the chicken…it gets hot fast so BE CAREFUL not to put the chicken in if the olive oil is smoking.  A low-medium setting should be good. Open the window because the paprika cooking will make your eyes water.

4: Add the chicken!  I cooked it on both sides until it was cooked all the way through.  The beauty of the dutch oven is that after some time cooking in juices, the meat becomes tender again.  So it is may be overcooked AND tender! Perfect combo for any OCD chef!

5. Add the olives!

6.Add the stock  (I added about a cup to a cup and a half of stock.  No need to cover the chicken like you would if you were making a soup).

7. Add the Kumquats (sliced and take out as many of the seeds as you can before you get bored of taking out seeds) and Karrots (I love spelling it like that)!

8.  I added 1 tbs of key lime juice for fun here, but only because I had it in the fridge already and I thought it would be good. You could add 2tbs white wine or even 1tbs Balsamic vinegar here…just something acidy to cut the fat from the chicken and the salt from the stock.

9. Put in the Oven (covered) for 45 minutes.

10.Make the Pea Puree! Take a bag of frozen peas and 1 cup of nonfat Greek Yogurt. Blend with your choice of blending method (see above). Put it in the fridge so it doesn’t melt!

11. Chop the herbs! Set aside.

12. With 5 minutes before the chicken is ready, make the couscous.  I like instant because it takes 5 minutes.

13. Assemble your dinner!  Put couscous, chicken + olives + carrots, pea puree and fresh herbs on a plate.  Drink with a mojito.