Italian Chopped Salad

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Ingredients:

For Dressing:

4 cloves garlic
1 to 2 tablespoons dried oregano (Nancy recommends 2; I got nervous and used 1, but might not have minded more)
2 teaspoons kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons lemon juice, or juice of 1 lemon
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil, ideally extra-virgin

For Salad:
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas or 1 3/4 cups cooked chickpeas, drained
1 small red onion, peeled and sliced into paper-thin rings
1/2 pound provolone (see Note about varieties), sliced 1/8-inch thick then cut into 1/4-inch ribbons
1/2 pound salami, peeled, sliced 1/8-inch thick then cut into 1/4-inch ribbons
4 medium or 8 small pickled pepperoncini, sliced into rings
3/4 pound cherry tomatoes
Sea salt
1 head iceberg lettuce, halved, cored, and cut in 1/2-inch ribbons
1 head radicchio, halved, cored and cut in 1/4-inch ribbons
2 tablespoons dried oregano for garnish (optional)

Directions for Dressing: Roughly chop the garlic and then add the oregano, salt and up to 1/2 teaspoon ground pepper. Chop the mixture together using the side of a knife (or a mortar and pestle if you have it) to make a grainy herb paste. Transfer the paste to a large salad bowl, and add the lemon juice and vinegar. Mix with a fork allowing the salt to dissolve, then add the oil and whisk with a fork until well combined. The dressing should be thick with garlic and oregano.

To assemble salad: Gently fold the chickpeas, red onion, provolone, salami, pepperoncini (including seeds and juice) into the dressing, one at a time. Halve the tomatoes lengthwise and season with 1 1/2 teaspoons sea salt. Set aside until ready to serve. When ready to serve, gently add the tomatoes, lettuce and radicchio to the salad bowl, along with a couple of generous pinches of oregano, and toss to combine with the dressing. Adjust seasonings to taste, adding any reserved dressing if needed. Serve immediately.

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Baked Caprese Quinoa Skillet

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Ingredients:
  • 2 cups cooked quinoa
  • 1 cup of your favorite pasta sauce (I used homemade Arrabiata sauce)
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1/3 cup heavy cream
  • 1/3 cup Dutch Farms Shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 1 cup Dutch Farms Shredded Mozzarella, divided
  • 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, cut into ribbons
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
 
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  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Heat tomato sauce and tomato paste over low heat in a large saucepan. Once warm, stir in heavy cream, Dutch Farms shredded parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper, salt and pepper. Remove from the heat and stir in the quinoa. Fold in half of the mozzarella and half of the tomatoes, then chop 6 fresh basil leaves and add them in too. Once combined, spray a cast-iron skillet or baking dish with non-stick spray and pour the entire quinoa mixture into the dish. Top with Dutch Farms mozzarella cheese and the remaining tomatoes.
  3. Bake for 10 to 15 minutes and then turn the broiler on and broil for 1 to 2 minutes or until cheese is golden and bubbly.
  4. Remove from the oven and top with fresh basil ribbons and serve.
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Asian-Style Turkey Burger

 

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Turkey Burger Ingredients:

  • 1 lb lean ground turkey
  • 1/4 cup finely diced onion
  • 1/4 cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 2-3 tbsp Sriracha Sauce
  • 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp sesame seeds
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
  • 1 tbsp olive oil

Caramelized Onion Ingredients:

  • 1 yellow or Vidalia onion, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp pepper
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil

Sriracha-Mayonnaise Ingredients:

  • 1 tbsp Sriracha Sauce
  • 3 tbsp Mayo

Directions for carmelizing onion:

Heat olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onion and 1/4 teaspoon of salt and pepper. The salt will sweat the onion and make it soft. Cook, stirring frequently until the onions are golden brown, about 20 minutes.

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Directions for turkey burger patties:

  1. In a large bowl, mix together all ingredients. Form into 4 equal size patties.
  2. Preheat a large skillet over medium-high heat with a little olive oil on the bottom.
  3. Cook the patties in theskillet, over medium heat, flipping once until done (about 5 minutes on each side). Photo Apr 28, 7 01 50 PM (1)
  4. Meanwhile, make your Sriracha-mayo mixture by combining both ingredients.
  5. Toast the buns in a broiler or toaster. Schmear each side of the bun lightly with Sriracha-mayo. Put a burger on each of the bottom buns and top each burger with caramelized onions, lettuce, and any other toppings you want!

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Teriyaki Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce

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Ingredients

  • 2 Salmon fillets (or 1 filet of sockeye salmon)
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced ginger (or ground ginger)
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 cup of water
For the Sriracha Cream Sauce:

  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon sweetened condensed milk
  • 2-3 tablespoons Sriracha

Instructions:

  1. In a small bowl, combine cornstarch with 1/4 cup of water; set aside.
  2. Over medium heat, combine soy sauce, honey, brown sugar, ginger, garlic powder and 1 cup of water in a small saucepan. Bring to a simmer; whisk in cornstarch mixture until thick enough to coat back of a spoon. About 2-3 minutes. Turn off the heat and cool completely.Photo Apr 27, 6 23 06 PM
  3. Place the salmon fillets in a bowl. Season with salt and pepper, then pour the teriyaki marinade over the fillets. Let it marinade for at least half hour (or overnight).Photo Apr 27, 6 35 09 PM
  4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking dish with butter or nonstick cooking spray.
  5. After marinating, place the salmon fillets and the teriyaki sauce on the prepared baking dish. Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until cooked.
  6. While salmon is cooking, prepare the Sriracha cream sauce. Combine all the ingredients (mayonnaise, condensed milk and Sriracha)Processed with VSCOcam with c1 preset
  7. After baking, serve salmon on a bed of cooked rice, and top with the Sriracha cream sauce.
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Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookies

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I had a craving for chocolate chip cookies but noticed I didn’t have any brown sugar in my pantry. Determined to satistfy my craving, I adapted a standard chocolate chip cookie to adjust for no brown sugar. The cookies turned out soft and a little chewy!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter, softened
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 cups milk chocolate chips

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare a baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Use a mixer to cream together the butter and sugar. Add the eggs, one at a time and mix until incorporated. Add vanilla and blend until combined.
  3. Sift together the flour, baking soda, and salt in a medium bowl and mix until combined. Slowly add the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Mix until combined.
  4. Fold in the chocolate chips Photo Apr 26, 8 11 32 PM
  5. Form heaping tablespoons of dough on the baking sheet two inches apart.
  6. Bake for 8-11 minutes or until lightly golden.

Additions: I added 1/2 cup oats and 1/2 cup of coconut flakes to half of the batter to make Coconut Oat Chocolate Chip cookies (seen below). Feel free to add nuts or any other additions when you add the chocolate chips!

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One-Pot Tomato Basil Pasta

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  • 12 ounces linguine
  • 12 ounces cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered if large
  • 1 onion, thinly sliced 
  • 5 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 4-5 sprigs basil, plus torn leaves for garnish
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for serving
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 1/2 cups water
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

Combine pasta, tomatoes, onion, garlic, red-pepper flakes, basil, oil, 2 teaspoons salt, 1/4 teaspoon pepper, and water in a large straight-sided skillet. Bring to a boil over high heat. Boil mixture, stirring and turning pasta frequently with tongs, until pasta is al dente and water has nearly evaporated, about 9-10 minutes.Season to taste with salt and pepper, divide among 4 bowls, and garnish with basil and Parmesan cheese.

 

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Shrimp Scampi Pasta

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  • 1 lb of shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 4 oz of pancetta, diced
  • 1 yellow onion
  • 1 bag of baby spinach
  • 4 roma tomatoes, diced
  • 1 pound angel hair pasta
  • 6 cloves of garlic
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 2 tbsp. unsalted butter
  • Olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes, more or less depending on how spicy you like
  • Salt and pepper, to taste
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Prepare all of your ingredients before you add the pasta to the water – Peel and devein the shrimp.  Mince the garlic and parsley, chop the onion, juice and zest  the lemon.

In a large sauté on medium heat, add olive oil and pancetta.  Sauté for until the pancetta is browned and fat is rendered.

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Remove the pancetta from the pan and add the onion in the same pan you cooked the pancetta in. Cook until soft and translucent. Season with black pepper and red pepper. The red pepper will make it spicy so add according to how spicy you’d like the pasta. Then add the garlic and cook until fragrant. Add the spinach and tomatoes and cook until spinach is wilted and cooked down. Add white wine, raise the temperature to high and let the mixture simmer for 2-3 minutes until it slightly reduces.  Add butter and chicken broth and let simmer until it slightly reduces.  Add cream and let it simmer until a little thickened.  Add shrimp and cook, until pink. This won’t take long. Maybe 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the lemon juice and a tablespoon of lemon zest.

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Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to boil. Add 1-2 tablespoons of salt to the boiling water, then add pasta.  Stir the pasta as it cooks to make sure it doesn’t stick together.  When you drain the pasta, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid in a separate bowl/cup to use if the sauce needs thinning.

Toss the cooked pasta in the sauté pan. Add some of the cooking liquid from the pasta if feel you need more of a sauce. Toss with some parmesan or Romano cheese and the parsley and serve.

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Pistachio Layer Cake with Honey Vanilla Buttercream Frosting

Pistachio Cake

Adapated from Baked Explorations’ Aunt Sassy Cake

Ingredients for the cake:

1 cup shelled pistachios (plus 1/3 cup for decorating)
2 1/2 cups cake flour
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 3/4 cups sugar
1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract
1 large egg
3 large egg whites, at room temperature
1 1/2 cups ice-cold water
1/4 tsp cream of tartar

Ingredients for the Honey Vanilla Buttercream:
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups whole milk
1/3 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, soft but cool, cut into small pieces
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
3 tablespoon honey

Make the cake:
Preheat the oven to 325° F. Butter three 8-inch round cake pans, line the bottoms with parchment paper and butter the parchment. Dust parchment with flour and knock out excess flour.

In the bowl of food processor, pulse the pistachios until they are coarsely chopped. Transfer about 2 tablespoons’ worth of the coarse pistachios to a large bowl. Continue to process the rest of the pistachios until they are almost powdery, but not a superfine dust. Stir the pistachio powder into the reserved coarse pistachios. Sift the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt, together over the large bowl containing the pistachios mix. Stir to combine.

In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and shortening on medium speed until creamy, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the sugar and vanilla and beat until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the bowl, add the whole egg, and beat until just combined. Turn the mixture to low.

In a measuring cup, make 1 1/2 cups ice water. Add the flour mixture to the mixer in three parts, alternating with the ice water, beginning and ending with the flour mixture. For each addition, turn the mixer to low to add ingredients, then up to medium speed for a few seconds until incorporated. Scrape down the bowl, then mix on low-speed for a few more seconds.

In a medium bowl, whisk the egg whites and cream of tartar until soft peaks form (You can do this by hand. Don’t be intimidated, it should only take 2 to 3 minutes). Do not over beat. Gently fold the egg whites into the batter.

Divide the batter among the prepared pans and smooth the tops. Bake for 40-45 minutes, rotating the pans halfway through the baking time, until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean. Transfer the pans to a wire rack and let cool for 20 minutes. Turn the cakes out onto the rack and let cool completely. Remove the parchment paper.

Pistachio Cake 4

Make the honey vanilla buttercream:
In a medium heavy-bottomed saucepan, whisk the sugar and flour together. Add milk and cream and cook over medium heat whisking occasionally, until the mixture comes to a boil and has thickened, about 10 to 15 minutes.

Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a standing mixer with paddle attachment. Beat on high until cool (this takes at least 7 to 9 minutes of mixing) then add the butter; mix until thoroughly incorporated. Increase the speed to medium-high and beat until frosting is light and fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes.

Add the vanilla and honey and continue mixing until combined. If the frosting is too soft, put the bowl in the refrigerator to chill slightly, then beat again until it is proper consistency. If the frosting is too firm, set the bow over a pot of simmering water and beat with a wooden spoon until it is the proper consistency.

Assemble the cake:
Place one cake layer on a serving platter. Trim the top to create a flat surface, and evenly spread about 1 1/4 cups frosting on top. Add the next layer, trim and frost it, then add the third layer. Spread a very thin layer of frosting over the sides and top of the cake and put it in the refrigerator for bout 15 minutes to firm up. (This is known as the crumb coating and will help keep loose cake crumbs under control when you frost the outside of the cake.) Spread the sides and top of the cake with the remaining frosting. Garnish the cake with crushed pistachios and refrigerate it for 15 minutes to it firm up before serving.

This cake will keep beautifully in a cake saver at room temperature for up to 3 days, if the weather is humidity free. Otherwise, put it in a cake saver and refrigerate it for up to 3 days. Let the cake sit a room temperature for at least 2 hours before serving.

Pistachio Cake 5 Pistachio Cake 6Pistachio Cake 7

Classic Pie Dough

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This basic pie dough recipe can be used for any of your favorite recipes that call for pie crust.

Yields 2 balls of dough, enough for two single-crust 9-inch pies or one double-crust pie.

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Ice water
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter

Directions:

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, and salt together. In a measuring cup, stir 3/4 cup water with several ice cubes until it is very cold.

Cut the cold butter into cubes and toss them in the flour mixture to coat. Put the mixture in the bowl of a food processor and pulse in short bursts until the butter pieces are the size of hazelnuts.

Pulsing in 4-second bursts, slowly drizzle the ice water into the food processor.

As soon as the dough comes together in a ball, stop adding water. Remove the dough from the food processor and divide it in half. Flatten each piece into a disk and wrap each disk first in parchment paper and then in plastic wrap. Refrigerate the dough until firm, about 1 hour. (The dough can stay refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for 3 months)

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An Apple Pie made using this Classic Pie Dough recipe.

An Apple Pie made using this Classic Pie Dough recipe.