Tuesday, July 27, 2010

More friends vegetables

I had a yellow squash from a friends garden and wanted to try a recipe from Food & Wine:

I had stopped and picked up wild, local salmon and thought they'd be great together.

1 large yellow zucchini, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1/2 cup red onion, diced
1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon cumin
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons ricotta
about 5 mint leaves, chopped

Preheat the oven to 375°. Combine zucchini, onion, tomatoes, olive oil and salt and pepper. Spread the mixture on a large rimmed baking sheets. Roast for about 20 minutes, until the mixture is browned around the edges. Stir several times while cooking. Sprinkle the mixture with cumin.

Transfer the mixture to a bowl. Toss with the lemon juice, ricotta and chopped mint.


Sunday, July 25, 2010


I'm in love with corn right now and could eat it every day. I saw a recipe in Bon Appetit that combined polenta with fresh corn. I had leftover summer vegetable casserole and chicken and thought the polenta would be good with the leftovers.


It was comfort food and very like grits. Abigail said she would eat the leftovers for breakfast with eggs.

Polenta with fresh corn my way

5 cups chicken stock and water
1 cup polenta
1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
fresh corn kernels (cut from about 2 large ears)
1/2 cup goat cheese
1/2 freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Bring 5 cups stock and water to boil in heavy large saucepan over high heat. Gradually whisk in polenta, then 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and sugar. Reduce heat to medium-low; simmer until polenta is tender, thick, and creamy, whisking often and adjusting heat to maintain gentle simmer, 25 to 30 minutes. Add corn kernels and cook, stirring constantly, until corn is tender, about 5 minutes. Mix in goat and Parmesan cheeses. Season polenta to taste with salt and pepper.


Thursday, July 22, 2010

Friends' Garden

My friends are very generous with the things they grow in their gardens. Jane gave me a large zucchini from her brother, Michael's, garden and Jan brought me tomatoes, parsley and yellow squash. I had wanted to try a recipe I saw in Food & Wine and now I had most of the ingredients. Here's the link: http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/summer-vegetable-casserole

This turned out to be a beautiful and delicious dish. A big hit with Abigail and Mike!

Summer Vegetable Casserole my way

Extra virgin olive oil
4 Yukon Gold potatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
2 large garlic clove, pressed
1 teaspoon dried thyme
3 medium tomatoes, sliced 1/4 inch thick
freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Preheat the oven to 350°. Coat a 13-inch baking dish with olive oil. Spread the potatoes in the dish in an even layer; drizzle with oil and season with salt and pepper. In a bowl, combine the bell pepper, onion, garlic and thyme and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and stir to combine. Arrange 2/3 of the bell pepper mixture over the potatoes. Top with the tomatoes and the zucchini; and season with salt and pepper. Cover with the remaining bell pepper mixture and sprinkle with the cheese to cover.

Cover the casserole with foil and bake for 40 minutes. Increase the oven temperature to 425°. Uncover the casserole and bake for about 20 minutes longer, until the vegetables are tender and glazed on top. Serve warm.

We had it with roasted chicken breasts but it would have been wonderful with grilled fish or steak.


Sunday, July 18, 2010

Eat This - Chicken Veggie Skewers

I got the idea for these skewers from the series of books: Eat This, Not That! Lean meat and vegetables cooked on the grill with pesto. Healthy and delicious! I served it with the Peruvian Corn and Zucchini dish I posted on June 30th.

Chicken Veggie Skewers

~1 1/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into chunks about 2" inch chunks
2 - 3 zucchini, lightly peeled and cut into 1/2" rounds
1/2 red onion cut into chunks
cherry tomatoes
extra virgin olive oil
1/2 of lemon
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
~ 1 tablespoon Herbes de Provence
Tabasco to taste
2-3 tablespoons pesto, see July 14th post
6-8 skewers depending on length

Thread 1st 4 ingredients onto skewers. Place on large rimmed cookie sheet. Squeeze lemon over all the skewers followed by olive oil, salt, pepper, herbs and Tabasco. Let marinate for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Grill until chicken is done and vegetables are soft and begin to caramelize, about 5-7 minutes per side. Remove from grill and dab with pesto. Serve immediately.


Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Summer Cooking

I have been cooking this week but nothing really in the way of "recipes". The produce is so good all I need is some olive oil, salt and pepper. Mike went to the Farmers Market Tuesday near his office and got more tomatoes and a weird looking melon. I went today and got some more assorted cherry tomatoes because I wanted to make caprese salad. I also made pesto because Abigail is back from her trip and it is one of her favorites. One nice thing about her being gone for month she really missed my cooking!

Caprese Salad

about 3/4 pint of small, ripe tomatoes, rinsed and cut in half or 1/4 depending on their size
about 4 ounces of mozzarella ciliegine or small balls of fresh mozzarella, halved or the same size as your tomatoes
1 garlic clove, pressed
1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small sprig basil cut into chiffonade
kosher salt and pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients together and let marinate 1/2 hour to 1 hour before eating. Return to room temperature before serving.


1 bunch fresh basil, washed and leaves picked from stems
1 garlic clove, peeled and inner stem removed
3 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
kosher salt and pepper to taste
~1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 Parmesan cheese, freshly grated

Combine basil, garlic and pine nuts in food processor. Blend to combine. Add olive oil through feed tube as food processor is running. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Add Parmesan cheese to pesto before serving. Do not add cheese if you are going to refrigerate pesto. Add just before serving.

Pesto is great on any kind of pasta or sandwiches or bruschetta. Be creative.


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Summer Roasted Vegetables

I love roasted vegetables and found last year that roasted greens beans are delicious. I decided to try them again with corn and tomatoes. There is a Farmers Market every day in the county where I live in the summer so today when I went to get some fresh wild king salmon, there was a farmers market outside of the Bryan's Fine Foods in Corte Madera.

I got 2 beautiful salmon fillets for grilling and walked outside and got fresh corn, green beans and small tomatoes.

This is one of my favorite kind of meals, all the ingredients are so fresh and wonderful you don't need to do much.

Roasted Summer Vegetables

2 ears of corn, shucked and kernels removed
couple of handfuls of green beans, trimmed and snapped
approximately 8 ripe large cherry or grape tomatoes, coarsely chopped
extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and pepper

Heat oven to 375 degrees. Toss all the ingredients together and place on jelly roll pan. Roast for about 20 minutes. Stir. Roast another 20 minutes, adjust heat if necessary. Finish off with about 5-10 minutes of roasting until vegetables are soft and edges begin to brown.

Grilled King Salmon

2 fresh wild king salmon fillets, about 3/4 of a pound
1 large garlic clove, pressed
extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt and pepper

Season the fillets and grill until desired doneness.

Serve immediately. Enjoy!