Month: May 2014

Farro and Beet Salad

5 medium sized beets, roasted, peeled and diced

May 27 003

May 27 005 May 27 016 May 27 021

May 27 022

1 ½ C farro

1 bunch scallions, finely chopped

½ C golden raisins

1 C walnut pieces, toasted

½ bunch parsley, finely chopped

May 27 026

Zest of 1 orange

May 27 017 May 27 025

May 27 023

1 C goat cheese, crumbled

2 C baby kale

Salt and pepper to taste

For beets: Trim tops and bottoms of beets so they sit in a baking dish without rolling around. Try to use similar-sized beets for even cooking. A mix of gold and red beets looks great. Place trimmed beets into a baking dish prepared with non-stick spray. Cover dish with foil and place into a preheated 375 degree oven. Bake beets for 1 hour or more until a knife inserts easily. Allow beets to cool. Peel and dice.

For farro: In a sauce pan, add 1 ½ C of farro and 2 ¼ C of water. Season with 1 t salt, 4 bay leaves, and 1 t dried thyme. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and cook for an additional 10 or 15 minutes more until grain has a nice bite. Drain off excess water and place cooked farro on a plate for cooling.

May 283 004

Farro is a grain high in protein and fiber. It is a great substitute for pasta or rice. Farro resides in the spelt family.

Combine cooled beets, farro and remaining ingredients in a bowl and toss with orange herb vinaigrette. Great combination. Healthy and Tasty.

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Curried Butternut Squash Soup

2 T olive oil

2 T butter

1 yellow onion, coarsely chopped

4 celery stalks, chopped

May 27 006

4 carrots, peeled and sliced on the diagonal

May 27 008 May 27 019

4 pounds butternut squash, peeled and cut into large pieces

May 27 009 May 27 011

May 27 027

½ t red pepper flakes

4 bay leaves

2 t curry powder

2 t dried thyme

4 whole cloves

¼ C fresh lemon juice

8 C chicken stock

May 27 029

In a preheated stock pot, add olive oil and butter. Once butter is melted, add onions and celery. Sauté until softened and slightly caramelized.

Toss carrots with a small amount of olive oil (just enough to moisten) and spread on a cookie sheet prepared with non-stick spray. Sprinkle with salt, pepper, and dried thyme. Place in a preheated 400 degree oven. Do the same preparation for the squash, but on a separate sheet. Place in the oven. Bake for 25-30 minutes or until edges are nicely browned.

Add carrots and squash to onion mix. Add red pepper, bay leaves, curry, thyme, cloves lemon juice and stock. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer allowing flavors to meld. Remove from heat and allow soup to cool. Overnight is fine. Once cooled, place soup into a blender in small batches and puree until smooth. (Never do this with hot soup.) Reheat pureed soup. Adjust seasoning with salt and pepper. If you prefer a thinner consistency, add more stock or water … or cream if you’re feeling naughty. Serve with scallions and pumpernickel croutons.

May 283 006

 

Orange Herb Vinaigrette

(makes 1 ¼ C of dressing)

¼ C red wine vinegar

1 T Dijon mustard

2 T orange juice concentrate

½ t salt

½ t black pepper

1 T orange zest

2 t Greek Mediterranean seasoning *

May 28 001May 28 002 

¾ C olive oil

May 28 004 

Combine all ingredients except olive oil in a pitcher. Use a stick blender and blend well. With blender running, slowly drizzle in olive oil until a smooth emulsification forms.

*Greek Mediterranean seasoning can be purchased at World Market/Cost Plus Stores. It is a blend of chili flakes, garlic, lemon peel, dill, oregano, cinnamon, mace, spearmint, and chervil.

Apricot and White Chocolate Scones

(makes 8 large or 10 smaller-sized scones)

2 ½ sticks butter, diced and chilled

4 C flour

¼ C sugar

2 T baking powder

2 t salt

May 27 030

4 eggs, in a pourable container

Zest of 1 orange, added to eggs

May 27 032

May 27 031

1 C white chocolate chips

1 C dried apricots, diced

May 27 033

May 27 035 May 27 036

May 27 037May 27 041

Heavy cream

Egg wash

Raw sugar for sprinkling

Place diced butter in the freezer while you prepare other ingredients. In a stand mixer bowl, add flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Mix together well using the paddle attachment. Add chilled butter and pulse mixer to coat the butter with flour mix. You may need to break up any big chunks of butter with your fingers. Remember to work fairly quickly. You want the butter to remain cold. Add apricots and white chocolate. Pulse again to evenly mix. Pour eggs into flour mix one at a time, pulsing to mix. Remove the paddle attachment and use it to scoop to the bottom of the bowl to get the flour that is not mixing. Attach paddle and drizzle in heavy cream slowly while pulsing mixer with short bursts. Mix should just hold together. I often work with my hands at this point. Just add a smidge more cream if dough is to dry. If dough is too wet, add a smidge more flour. Hope you guys are comfortable with the term smidge! Gather dough into a ball and place into a 10 inch cake pan that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. Press evenly into pan. Invert pan onto a floured board. Cut into 8 or 10 wedges. Place scones on a cookie sheet that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. Brush with egg wash. (1 egg and ¼ C of heavy cream, beaten) Sprinkle each scone with raw sugar. Place in a preheated 400 degree oven and bake for 25 minutes. Rotate halfway through cooking. Scones should just be set to the touch. Touch the thickest part of the biggest scone. It should feel set and not loose.

After scones have cooled a bit (5 minutes), remove to a wire rack for further cooling. These are so perfect served warm. If you serve the next day, reheat in a toaster oven. Scones are optimal shortly out of the oven.

May 27 042May 27 044

Meatloaf Sandwich

(makes 1 large or 2 small loaves)

May 20 003 May 20 005 May 20 006

2 pounds ground beef (90/10 mix)

½ pound pork sausage (Jimmy Dean original is good)

1 yellow onion, finely diced

½ C ketchup

2 T Worcestershire Sauce

2 slices of sandwich bread (remove crust, moisten with water and squeeze dry)

2 ½ t salt

4 t black pepper

3 eggs

Work it!

Work it!

May 20 012 May 20 013

Consistency of pate

Consistency of pate

 

Had this picture for lunch along with kettle chips and a Shiner Bock. Delicious.

Add 2 T of olive oil to a preheated sauté pan. Add onion along with a pinch of salt and pepper. Sauté until onion is translucent. Remove from stove and place onion on a paper towel lined plate. Allow to cool. In a separate large mixing bowl, add eggs and whisk to break them up. Add ketchup, salt, pepper and Worcestershire Sauce to eggs and mix. Add onion, meat, sausage, and bread to the mix and get your hands dirty! Using your impeccably clean hands, mix meatloaf until all ingredients are incorporated really well. Take a little time. I prefer the meat to hold together really well. Mixing well with your hands helps develop a perfect texture when it is time to slice the meatloaf for sandwiches. Place meat into a large loaf pan that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. Shape loaf evenly and place a nice coating of Heinz. Place loaf pan on a cookie sheet, just in case. Place meatloaf into a preheated 350 degree oven for 1 hour. Turn and continue to bake for about another hour. Really! Ketchup should be nice and caramelized on top. Cool on the counter. Place loaf, in the pan, in the fridge for overnight cooling. Next day, remove the meat and scrape off congealed fat. Slice the loaf for sandwiches. You can freeze the cooked loaf in saran wrap and save it for another time. At High’s, we bake four at one time. Lidia does not need the recipe anymore!

Perfect on lightly toasted bread with leaf lettuce, tomato, red onion and our secret sauce. COMFORT.

REMEMBER: after handling raw meat, always wash your hands with soap and water. Health code says you should wash as long as it takes you to sing “Happy Birthday.”

Orange Pecan Muffins

(makes 12 medium-sized muffins)

May 20 020 May 20 024 May 20 025

2 C flour

¼ t salt

1 t soda

¾ C pecan pieces, toasted

1 stick butter, soft

1 C plus 1 T sugar

Zest of 1 large orange

2 eggs, room temperature

1 C sour cream

Raw sugar for sprinkling

May 20 027

May 20 031

In a bowl, combine flour, salt and soda. Whisk to combine. Add pecan pieces to bowl and stir to coat with flour.

In a stand mixer bowl, add butter and sugar. Using the paddle attachment, beat butter and sugar until smooth and airy. Add zest and mix well. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

Add flour and sour cream to the butter mixture alternately beginning and ending with the flour mix. The stand mixer should be on its lowest speed. Finish incorporating with a spoonula.

Portion batter into a muffin tin that has been sprayed with non-stick baking spray. Sprinkle muffin tops with raw sugar. Place into a preheated 375 degree oven. Bake for 12 minutes, rotate pan and bake for an additional 12 minutes. Muffins should be just set to the touch. Careful not to go by color. Always touch the tops. Allow to cool a few minutes in the pan. Remove to a wire rack for cooling. The dough can be made ahead and baked off when needed. Good for several days.

High’s Chicken Salad

2 ½ pounds boneless skinless chicken breast, cooked, trimmed and diced

May 20 014 May 20 017

Perfectly cooked. Still moist, but cooked through.

Perfectly cooked. Still moist, but cooked through.

2 pieces of celery, finely diced

4 green onions, finely chopped

2 dozen red seedless grapes

¾ C mayo

¾ C sour cream

Salt

Cracked black pepper

May 20 043 May 20 045

classic, always good

classic, always good

For chicken: place chicken in a stock pot and cover with cold water. Add 2 t salt and bring to a boil, uncovered. Once boiling, cook for about 5 minutes. Remove chicken from heat and cover for 20 minutes. Place cooked chicken on a plate and chill in the refrigerator. Trim and dice for salad.

Once chicken is prepared, add the remaining ingredients. Salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste. (I like lots of pepper in mine!) Chill for several hours before serving. Good the next day too.

High’s chicken salad has been around since we opened. Maria makes pounds and pounds of chicken salad every week. She is the steadiest hand in our kitchen.

Serve on a sandwich with lightly toasted bread, leaf lettuce and a slice of red onion. Or, many prefer it on spring greens with our raspberry chipotle dressing.

Caution: be very careful when handling raw chicken. Wash hands and cooking surfaces with soap and water.

 

Chocolate Chunk Pecan Cookies

Get organized!

May 20 022 May 20 029 May 20 033 May 20 036

(makes 20 large cookies)

2 ½ C flour

2 t baking soda

¼ t salt

2 ½ C chocolate chunks

1 ½ C pecan pieces, toasted

2 sticks butter, soft

1 ¾ C brown sugar

¼ C sugar

1 ½ t vanilla

2 eggs

In a bowl, combine flour, soda and salt. Whisk to incorporate. Add chocolate and pecans to the flour mix and evenly coat.

In a stand mixer bowl, add butter and both sugars. Beat well with paddle attachment until lightened and well blended. Combine eggs and vanilla in a pourable container. With machine on low, add eggs and vanilla slowly. Once blended in, adjust speed higher and beat until an “icing like” consistency is achieved. Reduce to lowest speed and spoon in flour mix and blend well. You can finish with a spoonula.

Portion out cookies onto a cookie sheet using an ice cream scoop. Chill. Once chilled, place cookies onto a cookie sheet prepared with baking spray and place into a 350 degree preheated oven. Cook for 15 minutes, rotate pan and cook for an additional 8-10 minutes. After removing cookies from the oven, “thwack” the cookie sheet on the edge of the counter to deflate and create cracks. Allow to cool for a few minutes before removing to a wire rack.

Unused dough portions are good for several days in the fridge or several weeks in the freezer.

May 20 038

May 20 047