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Tag Archives | Winter 2010 Recipes



peeling a tomato

(From Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking with Marcella Hazan)

“This is the simplest of all sauces to make, and none has a purer, more irresistibly sweet tomato taste. I have known people to skip the pasta and eat the sauce directly out of the pot with a spoon.”

2 cups canned plum tomatoes (whole, peeled, chopped, with their juices about one 28-oz. can)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 medium yellow onion, peeled and cut in half
Salt, to taste
  1. Combine the tomatoes, their juices, the butter, and the onion halves in a medium saucepan.
  2. Add a pinch or two of salt. Place over medium heat and bring to a simmer. Cook, uncovered, at a very slow but steady simmer, adjusting the heat as necessary, for about 45 minutes, or until droplets of fat float free from the tomato.
  3. Stir occasionally, mashing any large pieces of tomato with the back of a wooden spoon. Taste and salt as needed.
  4. Discard the onion.


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pan roasted veal with pancetta and sage

(From How to Cook Italian by Giuliano Hazan)

Preparation time: 25 minutes. Total time from start to finish: about 2 hours

Serves 4 as a main course or 6 as part of a multi-course

Italian meal
2 pounds boneless veal breast or shoulder
4 ounces thinly sliced pancetta
8–10 fresh sage leaves
4 medium garlic cloves
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
2 tablespoons butter
Black pepper, freshly ground
½ cup dry white wine

Trim any excess fat from around the veal. Lay the meat on a flat surface with the skin side down. Place the pancetta slices and sage leaves on the meat, then roll the meat tightly. Tie with kitchen string at 1–inch intervals.

Lightly crush and peel the garlic cloves. Put the oil, butter, and garlic in a heavy bottomed braising pan and place it over medium high heat. When the garlic cloves have lightly browned on all sides, discard them.

Put the meat in and brown it well on all sides. Season with salt and pepper. Add the wine and let it bubble rapidly for about a minute to evaporate the alcohol while stirring with a wooden spoon to loosen the browned bits on the bottom of the pan.

Reduce the heat so that the wine simmers gently, cover the pot with the lid slightly ajar, and cook until the meat is tender when pierced with a fork, about 1 ½ to 2 hours. Turn the roast about every 20 minutes and, if all the liquid evaporates before the meat is tender, add a little water as necessary.

Remove the veal from the pot, place it on a cutting board, and remove the string. Cut the roast into ¼–inch slices. If there is liquid left in the pan, turn the heat to high and let it boil until it has reduced and formed a sauce. If there is no liquid left, add a few tablespoons of water. Put the veal slices back in the pot to coat with the sauce and serve at once.

Note: The roast can be made up to 2–3 days ahead of time. When ready to serve, slice it and reheat it in its sauce.

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Tortellini Filled with Swiss Chard

(From How to Cook Italian by Giuliano Hazan)

Pasta dough, made with 2 eggs and 1 and 1/2 cups flour
2 pounds Swiss chard (more if the stalks are large) or fresh spinach or 20 ounces frozen spinach, thawed
4 tablespoons butter
1/4 cup yellow onion, finely chopped
2 ounces prosciutto, finely diced
1 cup whole milk ricotta
1 egg yolk
1/2 cup plus 1/3 cup Parmigiano-Reggiano, freshly grated
1⁄8 teaspoon nutmeg

Remove the stalks from the Swiss chard or the stems from the spinach. Wash the leaves in several changes of cold water and place them in a pot with just the water that clings to them and a sprinkling of salt. Put the pot over medium high heat, cover and cook until the leaves are tender. Drain and, when cool enough to handle, squeeze as much water out of the leaves as possible. (If using frozen spinach follow the same procedure except that they should be cooked in enough salted boiling water to cover them for about 3 minutes).

Put the butter and onion in a saute pan over medium heat and saute until the onion turns a rich golden color. Add the prosciutto and saute for about another minute. Add the Swiss chard or spinach and saute for another 3 minutes. Do not worry if it absorbs all the butter. Transfer the contents of the pan to a mixing bowl and let it cool.

When the sauteed Swiss chard or spinach is cool add the ricotta, egg yolk, the ½ cup of parmesan cheese and nutmeg. Mix well until the mixture is well amalgamated then taste for salt.

Roll out the pasta dough until it is very thin. If using the pasta machine roll out just one strip at a time. If you’ve rolled out the pasta by hand cut a strip approximately 3–inches wide and cover the rest with plastic. Place dollops of about 1 tablespoon of the filling along the bottom half of the strip spaced about 1–inch apart. Fold the top half of the pasta strip over the stuffing and using a pastry cutting wheel cut along the bottom edge, the sides, and in between each dollop of stuffing forming square tortelloni. The edges should be sealed by the cutting action of the pastry wheel, however make sure they are and pinch shut any loose edges with your fingers. Place the tortelloni on a dry cloth, spaced enough apart so they won’t stick to each other, and continue the process until all the pasta and/or the stuffing is used up.

Gently heat the tomato sauce or set aside 6 tablespoons butter cut into small pieces and ½ cup of grated parmigiano- reggiano.

Bring 4 quarts of water to a boil, add 1 tablespoon salt and 1 tablespoon olive oil and carefully drop the tortelloni using the towel to slide them in. When the edges of the tortelloni are cooked al dente drain well and transfer to a serving platter. Pour the sauce over them and the 1/3 cup parmesan cheese and gently toss until they are evenly coated with sauce. Serve at once.

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From Michael Leopold, Executive Chef, The Crow’s Nest Marina Restaurant and Tavern

Makes about 10 servings

2 medium Spanish onions
2 butternut squash
4 apples (Granny Smith are best)
8 tablespoons butter (keep cold)
½ cup brandy
4 cups chicken stock (approximately)
1½ tablespoons kosher salt
2 teaspoons white pepper
½ cup Gorgonzola cheese
½ cup Half & Half
Fresh chives, minced

Wrap the onions, skin and all, in aluminum foil and roast in a 400-degree oven for 1 hour.

Cut squash in half lengthwise, scoop out seeds, and lay flat side down on oiled parchment paper. Roast in 400-degree oven for about 45 minutes or until soft.

Peel, core, and dice apples. Sauté in 2 tablespoons butter in large soup pot until soft, then add brandy and cook for 1 minute.

Scoop out the flesh of the squash and add it to the pot. Peel the onions, chop coarsely, and add to the pot. Add enough stock to cover by about 1 inch. Simmer for 30 minutes.

Purée the soup. (It’s best to do this with a hand-held immersion blender, rather than a standard blender or food processor.)

While the soup is blending, cube the remaining 6 tablespoons of cold butter and add them piece by piece until incorporated. Add salt and pepper to taste. Combine the gorgonzola and Half & Half by blending in a food processor until smooth. Drizzle this Gorgonzola Crema over the soup and garnish with fresh minced chives.

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Seared Florida Black Grouper with Heirloom Tomato Salad

From Stephen Phelps , Executive Chef, Bijou Cafe

Heirloom tomato salad:

1 cup local heirloom tomatoes (any variety), sliced in half
½ cup shaved fennel
Micro arugula
Splash of sherry vinegar
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Roma tomato syrup:

4 cups chopped ripe Roma tomatoes
½ cup sugar
½ cup water
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

Purée tomatoes with water and sugar. Strain into nonreactive skillet. Cook on medium heat until most liquid is evaporated and texture is “syrup” form. Remove from heat and stir in red wine vinegar and salt to taste. Refrigerate until needed.

Grouper Preparation:

1 6- 8-ounce grouper filet (snapper is a good substitute)
2 teaspoons olive oil
2 teaspoons whole butter

In a small skillet, heat oil and butter until butter begins to foam. Salt and pepper fish on both sides and place in the heated pan for approximately 3 minutes or until nicely browned. Turn fish over and finish in 450-degree oven for 5–8 minutes or until just cooked through. Plate fish with fennel salad and drizzle tomato syrup around as needed.

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deviled eggs with caviar

From Francis “Fran” Casciato, Executive Chef Libby’s Café + Bar

15 eggs
1 cup mayonnaise
½ cup pickle relish
¼ cup chipotle in adobe, puréed smooth
2 tablespoons dry mustard
1 tablespoon sugar
¾ teaspoon kosher salt
¾ teaspoon black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped parsley

Cover the eggs with water in a saucepan, bring to a boil and simmer 5 minutes. Remove pan from heat and allow eggs to remain in the water for an additional 5 minutes. Then place the eggs in an ice bath to chill.

Peel the eggs, cut in half lengthwise and spoon yolks into a small mixing bowl. Pass the yolks through a fine strainer. Combine remaining ingredients in a separate bowl and mix thoroughly. Fold yolks into mixture, spoon into cooked egg whites. Refrigerate.

To serve, top with your favorite caviar. Libby’s happens to prefer Mote Marine Sturgeon Caviar!

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