Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Porcini Salt Minute Steaks with Rosti

As shared from the kitchen of Once Upon a Plate by Mari
Adapted from Donna Hay

2 Servings

For the Meat:
About 1/2 ounce dried porcini mushrooms (15 grams)
1 Tablespoon sea salt flakes
4 thin-cut sirloin steaks, or beef filet (about 3 ounces each)
olive oil (for brushing)
For the Rosti:
I large potato (Russet; starchy baking potato), about 13 to 14 ounces, peeled and grated
1 Tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
Scant 2 ounces butter, melted
Sea Salt
Vegetable Oil for frying
In the bowl of a spice mill, small food processor or blender, combine porcini and sea salt flakes and pulverize until powdered. Set aside.
To make the Rosti:
Mix the grated potato, rosemary, butter and salt in a bowl, toss to combine.
Heat frying pan over medium-high heat, add a little oil and one-quarter of the potato mixture, spreading out to make a thin even pancake. Cook for 3 to 4 minutes each side or until crispy and browned. Repeat with remaining potato mixture, and hold on a rack placed over a baking pan in a warm oven.
To cook the meat:
Brush the steaks with oil and sprinkle with porcini salt. Heat a frying pan over high
heat; when hot, add steaks and cook for about 1 minute, or so, each side. Serve with the rosti and extra porcini salt on the side.


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Monday, October 15, 2012

Three Asian-Style Dipping Sauces

From the kitchen of Once Upon a Plate, by Mari

Any or all of these are wonderful served with Asian style spring/summer rolls, or egg rolls. Also delicious drizzled over poached or grilled chicken, fish, prawns or crab. You can make them up to a day ahead and store, covered in the refrigerator.  (Bring to room temperature before serving) You can double or triple the recipes if you need larger servings.

Lime-Sesame Dipping Sauce (Tangy and mild)

  • Juice from 1/2 lime
  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 Tablespoon rice vinegar
  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1/2  teaspoon soy sauce, or more to taste
  • 1 teaspoon brown sugar, or more to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon toasted sesame seed oil, or more to taste
  • sesame seeds (optional garnish)
  • Method: In a small bowl, whisk all ingredients together until blended and sugar is dissolved. Taste for seasonings and
  • adjust. Sprinkle with a few sesame seeds before serving.
Peanut-Hoisin Dipping Sauce  (Make it Mild or Spicy)
  • 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3 Tablespoons peanut butter (creamy)
  • 2 Tablespoons hoisin sauce
  • 1 Tablespoon fish sauce (OR optional: use 1 up to 3 teaspoons soy sauce if you prefer, start with after 1 teaspoon. After mixing sauce add more soy sauce, to see if you like it saltier)
  • 1 Tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon chili paste or hot bean paste (more if you prefer spicier)
  • 1/2 cup chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup chopped roasted peanuts
  • Method:  Warm the oil in a small saucepan over medium heat. When oil is hot, add the garlic and cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 30 seconds. Add the peanut butter, hoisin sauce, fish sauce or soy sauce, sugar and chili paste, stir well and simmer for 15 seconds. Stir in the chicken broth; the mixture should have a thick, creamy consistency. Stir in peanuts. Allow to cool and serve, garnish with a few chopped peanuts if desired.

  • Spicy Sweet  Chili Dipping Sauce 
    • 1/4 cup fresh lime juice 
    • 1/4 cup rice vinegar 
    • 1 to 2 cloves peeled, crushed garlic
    • 2 1/2 teaspoon soy sauce 
    • 1 Tablespoons sugar, plus more, to taste 
    • 2 teaspoons minced jalapeño chili, plus more, to taste*
    • *You may use serrano chilis, I used ripe (red) serranos from the garden this time.
    • If you like it spicier, add a little Chinese Chili-Garlic Sauce (from the jar.)
    • Method: Mix all ingredients until sugar is dissolved. Serve.
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Monday, October 1, 2012

Mini Savory Cheesecakes with Dressed Greens
Makes 4 servings

For the cheesecakes:
3/4 cup capacity ramekins or custard cups
2 teaspoons unsalted butter, softened

1 slice bread, processed in a food processor to make 1/2 cup bread crumbs
1 cup (one 8-ounce container) whipped cream cheese
2 large eggs
1/4 cup sour cream
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons minced fresh parsley
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Generously coat four small (3/4-cup) soufflé molds with the butter. Divide the bread crumbs among the molds and coat the bottoms and sides heavily with the crumbs, pressing them onto the buttered dish so they stick.

Put the cream cheese in a medium bowl and add the eggs, sour cream, salt, pepper, and 1 tablespoon of the parsley. Mix well with a whisk and divide among the soufflé molds. Sprinkle the crumbled blue cheese on top of the cream cheese mixture in the molds. Top with the remaining 1 tablespoon parsley.
Arrange the molds on a baking sheet and bake for about 20 minutes.  Do not over bake. The cheesecakes should still be slightly wet and soft in the center. Let cool for 10 minutes before removing from molds. 

For the salads:
3 cups arugula or butterhead lettuce (Bibb, Boston leaves, or Spring Mix)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar
Dash salt and freshly ground pepper.  Meanwhile prepare the salad.

To assemble:

Whisk Olive oil, vinegar and salt and pepper in a bowl large enough to hold the greens. Add lettuce leaves to the bowl and toss gently. Divide the greens among 4 salad plates. Invert each cooled mini cheesecake into one of your hands to unmold it, then turn it over so it is right side up and place it in the center of one of the plates on top of the lettuce. Serve immediately.


Recipe adapted from More Fast Food My Way by Jacques Pepin.

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