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Posts Tagged ‘roasted’


We survived the hurricane without any damage beyond getting a little stir-crazy, so I have to feel pretty grateful. We didn’t lose power or have any terrible flooding, but all we could do for days was watch the damage on TV. Of course, one of my first plans of action was to get to work on hurricane food.

Naturally, my first inclination was for mac & cheese, which was so delicious that it was gone before I could take pictures. For those curious, my mac & cheese is basically my tuna noodle casserole without the tuna. Next up, tomato soup and grilled cheese. I had some cherry tomatoes that were ready to be roasted, and combined them with some canned tomatoes to round out the soup. Perfect cold, rainy weather food. And it’s always a good time for a grilled cheese.

Roasted Tomato Soup and Grilled Cheese

1 pint cherry tomatoes

4 tablespoons olive oil

12 sprigs thyme

1/2 can San Marzano tomatoes, crushed or pureed

1 cup red wine

2 tablespoons sugar

1/2 onion, minced

2 garlic cloves, minced

2 tablespoons tomato paste

2 slices whole grain bread

3 ounces sharp cheddar cheese

thin slices apple, a tablespoon apricot or fig jam, etc (optional)

Roast the cherry tomatoes with half the olive oil and half the thyme at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Meanwhile, saute the onion and garlic in the remaining olive oil for 3-4 minutes until softened. Add the tomato paste and allow to rust for another minute or two. Add the roasted tomatoes, canned tomatoes, sugar, and wine. Allow to cook together for 10-15 minutes while you prepare the grilled cheese. You may choose to puree the soup with a stick blender, but we wanted it chunky this time.

Toast the bread in a pan with olive oil or in a toaster until light brown. Add the cheese and any toppings you may like. Cook in a saute pan with a little olive oil or butter until the cheese melts and the bread is toasted. Make sure to flip halfway through and a lid can sometimes help the cheese to melt. Use medium heat so that the bread does not burn before the cheese has finish melting. Allow to cool a few minutes before cutting, so that the cheese does not run out.

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While we are in the midst of trying to sell the apartment, I’ve been falling back on old favorites. Last night, I made a version of this Puglian specialty, orecchiette with broccoli rabe and sausage and every time I make it, it brings me back to a night in southern Puglia. The meatiness of the sausage is comforting and warm on a cold fall night.

Fall always means lasagna time for me…I love making it for company too, because I can put it in the oven when they come over and spend time with people, rather than in the kitchen. My favorites for fall are mushroom and roasted carrot and butternut squash.

My favorite fall fruits are definitely pears, and I love to make crostatas with pears and gorgonzola this time of year. I make big batches of dough and freeze them for later, so I can just defrost and put together the filling when I’m running low on time.

Cold weather makes me really crave a good Sunday breakfast, and there’s no better breakfast than egg and pancetta sandwiches on homemade sage biscuits. I still have a couple of these tucked away in the freezer, and I can’t wait to have one this Sunday.

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I love heirloom cherry tomatoes from the farmer’s market. They are so sweet and flavorful, and I love to make a big batch of these slow-roasted tomatoes and keep them in the fridge to toss in everything. They’re also fabulous on their own, just on a couple slices of toasted baguette. The olive oil mixes with the tomato juices, and it’s delicious.

Roasted Thyme Tomatoes

1 pint assorted heirloom cherry tomatoes (or whatever ones you can get)

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

6 thyme springs

salt and pepper

Combine all the ingredients, making sure to coat the thyme in oil. Roast at 350 degrees for an hour. Spoon over toasted baguette slices or use in other recipes!

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I think this may be my favorite salmon recipe. It’s certainly one of the most memorable ones, and I’m already craving it again. The ginger and sweet glaze is such a perfect complement to the salmon, and it’s surprisingly easy. Roasting it at a low temperature keeps the fat from rendering out of the fish, so the fish stays moist and succulent.

The one thing I will stress though, is get the best fish you can find. That goes for all fish. You will notice the difference if you go out of your way to find a fishmonger. I will always choose a cheaper variety of fish from a reputable fish store over a more luxurious fish from a grocery store. In a recipe like this, where I recommend cooking the fish to medium rare, it makes a big difference.

Ginger Glazed Salmon

1 pound salmon (preferably wild, but whatever looks freshest)

4″ piece of ginger, grated

1 garlic clove, grated

1/4 cup low sodium soy sauce

1/2 cup red wine

1/4 cup mirin

2 tablespoons brown sugar

juice of 1/2 lime

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 scallion, sliced for garnish

Combine the soy sauce, red wine, mirin, brown sugar, garlic and 3/4 of the ginger in a sauce pan. Cook for 10 minutes, until it reduces by half. Remove from heat and add the remaining ginger and the lime juice. Let cool.

Rub the bottom of a baking dish with the olive oil and place the salmon in it, skin side down. Spoon a tablespoon of the glaze over the fish and wait 5 minutes. Spoon another tablespoon of the glaze over the fish.

Bake for 10 minutes at 250 degrees. Spoon another tablespoon of glaze over the fish and return to the oven for another 10 minutes. Continue to do this until the fish is cooked to medium rare (gives a little more resistance when you push it). Garnish with the scallion and serve.

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Roasted garlic is so easy and useful in many ways. It can be spread on bread to make a simple crostini, or it can be an ingredient in pizzas, pastas, chicken, vegetables– the list is endless. It makes the garlic taste sweeter and more flavorful, and removes the bitter bite garlic can sometimes have.

Roasted Garlic Crostini

1 head of garlic, sliced horizontally

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 sprig rosemary (optional)

Combine the ingredients in some foil and wrap into a pouch. Roast at 375 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour, until the garlic is soft. Squeeze it out and spread on toasted bread or add to your favorite recipes!

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After more than a week of eating healthy, this soup tasted so great with just a little ground lamb. I’ve started craving carbs, but not meat– until I started smelling this meat cooking. Because it had been a while, the soup was even more satisfying. I don’t cook a lot with all these spices, so it was nice to have an excuse to try them out. They make it a warm and hearty soup, almost a stew. It definitely inspired me to cook more Moroccan food, especially with some Israeli couscous once I’m back on carbs! If you don’t like cilantro, you could definitely substitute parsley.

Moroccan Lamb Soup

1/2 pound ground lamb

1/2 teaspoon chili flakes

1 cinnamon stick

1 teaspoon ground cumin

1 large onion, chopped

3-4 slices ginger

3 tablespoons tomato paste

1 cup French lentils

1/2 cup chopped cilantro, plus extra for garnish

1 cup cherry tomatoes

1 can chickpeas, drained well

5 cups water

1 lemon, zested and juiced

Roast the cherry tomatoes at 350 degrees for 1/2 hour with a little olive oil and salt and pepper. Meanwhile, start browning the meat in a large pot or dutch oven. Once browned, stir in the cinnamon stick, red pepper flakes, and cumin. Add the onion and ginger and stir through. Add in the tomato paste and season with salt. Add the lentils and the cilantro. Add the water and deglaze the pan by scraping up all the bits on the bottom. Cook for 20 minutes. Add the roasted tomatoes and chickpeas and simmer for another 10 minutes. Add the lemon juice and zest and season to taste. Serve with some cilantro on top if you wish.

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As part of my pre-Thanksgiving feast, I made homemade roasted butternut squash ravioli and I hand-rolled the pasta. Of course, I ended up with a lot of filling and I was tired of rolling out the pasta sheets. So, instead of making extra ravioli I made some cannelloni later on. Cover them with a white sauce with blue cheese, and they’re delicious. I wish I had more leftovers. (I made the original filling vegetarian, but this is how I prefer it…)

Roasted Butternut Squash Cannelloni with Blue Cheese

1 butternut squash, chopped

6 sage leaves

3 amaretti cookies

1 cup mascarpone

1/4 cup chicken stock

1/2 cup grated parmesan

1/2 teaspoon nutmeg

2 tablespoons butter

2 tablespoons flour

2 cups milk

1/2 cup white wine

3 ounces blue cheese such as Stilton

1 container cannelloni shells

Roast the squash at 375 degrees after seasoning it with salt and pepper for about 45 minutes. Let cool and add to a food processor with the sage, amaretti, mascarpone, stock, half the nutmeg, and parmesan. Blend together and taste for seasoning.

Meanwhile, cook the cannelloni in salted water until they are about half-cooked. Remove to an oiled baking sheet to cool. Stuff with the filling.

In a saucepan, combine the butter and flour and cook for a couple minutes. Add the milk and whisk until it starts to thicken. Whisk in the wine, blue cheese and remaining nutmeg. Season with salt. Spoon a little onto the bottom of a flat baking dish and line up the stuffed cannelloni in the dish. Top with the remaining sauce and make sure they are covered. You can grate some additional parmesan over the top if you wish.

Bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes, until the top starts to brown. Let cool a few minutes before serving.

 

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