Off the Shelf: April Magazine Reviews

Bon Appetit (Stephanie): The advent of spring is celebrated throughout the pages of Bon Appetit with recipes highlighting ingredients like asparagus, radishes, peas, strawberries, leeks. After the long winter months, it’s such a pleasure to cook with fresh seasonal produce again. So many recipes sounded tempting: Garganelli with Asparagus, Artichokes, Favas, and Peas; Soba Noodle Salad with Salmon and Asparagus Radish, Arugula, and Red Onion Salad with Tangerines; Orange-Flower Pavlovas with Strawberries; Bacon and Leek Risotto with Poached Egg; Ginger-Pecan Scones. Doesn’t all of that sound springy and delicious?!

My pantry ingredients enticed me to make the Chickpea Salad with Lemon, Parmesan, and Fresh Herbs. I didn’t have the fresh parsley or basil on hand, so I did substitute 1/2 tsp of the dried herbs, though I’m certain fresh would have been better. Still, this made a nutritious, delicious, inexpensive lunch. I served it on a bed of shredded romaine. This will definitely become a standby recipe.

CHICKPEA SALAD WITH LEMON, PARMESAN, AND FRESH HERBS
Bon Appetit, April 2011
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1 15- to 15 1/2-ounce can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed, drained
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
4 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 small garlic clove, pressed
1/3 cup (packed) freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Coarse kosher salt and fresh ground pepper

Combine rinsed and drained chickpeas, chopped fresh basil, chopped Italian parsley, fresh lemon juice, extra-virgin olive oil, and pressed garlic clove in medium bowl. Add grated Parmesan cheese and toss gently to blend all ingredients thoroughly. Season chickpea salad to taste with coarse kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper.

DO AHEAD Chickpea salad can be made 4 hours ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Serve salad chilled or at room temperature.


Everyday Food (Stephanie): Every couple of months I get my hands on an issue of Everyday Food, and while I’m not wowed by every page, there are always several recipes that pique my interest. In this issue I did find recipes I hope to try sometime: Sauteed Collards with Bacon; Raspberry Cornmeal Crumble Bars; Shredded Chicken with Kale and Lentils; Mushroom Risotto with Spring Herbs. Overall though, I felt like a Celebration of Spring theme seemed rather absent (other than the Easter Dinner menu: Salmon with Brown Sugar and Mustard Glaze; Salt and Pepper Rolls; Asparagus and Green Beans with Chili-Orange Oil; Balsamic Red Onions; Simple Lemon Cake). I would have enjoyed more lightened-up, spring produce featuring recipes.
We don’t eat much cereal in our house, but I love a bowl of granola now and then. So, I decided to try two variations of granola recipes: Pistachio-Apricot Granola and Cherry-Lime Granola. Both were quite tasty! (Though I didn’t have enough of the lime zest, so the lime flavor didn’t come through as strong as I would have liked.) I make my granola with Bob’s Red Mill Gluten-Free Rolled Oats, so my husband can enjoy the bounty as well. These recipes are a little on the pricey-side as the nuts and dried fruits can be expensive, but it’s fun to experiment with different flavors. The basic quantities are endlessly adaptable to your pocketbook and palate.
PISTACHIO-APRICOT GRANOLA
Everyday Food, April 2011
3 cups rolled oats (not quick oats)
1 cup unsalted, shelled pistachios
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/3 cup honey
1 teaspoon ground cardamom (I used 3/4 tsp cinnamon + 1/4 tsp nutmeg)
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 cup dried apricots, diced medium
Preheat oven to 300°F. In a large bowl, combine oats and pistachios. In a small saucepan, combine butter, honey, cardamom, and salt over medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until butter melts, 1 to 2 minutes. (Or, place ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave until butter melts, 1 to 2 minutes; stir until combined.)
Pour butter mixture over oat mixture and toss until oats and nuts are completely coated. Transfer to a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and spread in an even layer.
Bake until oats are lightly golden, 30 to 35 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Let cool completely; stir in apricots. (Store in an airtight container at room temperature, up to 3 weeks.)
CHERRY-LIME GRANOLA
Everyday Food, April 2011
3 cups rolled oats
1 cup raw almonds
1/4 cup unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/3 cup agave nectar or honey
1 packed Tablespoon fresh lime zest, finely grated
1/4 cup fresh lime juice
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1 cup dried tart cherries
Preheat oven to 300°F. In a large bowl, combine oats and pistachios. In a small saucepan, combine butter, agave, lime zest, lime juice, and salt over medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until butter melts, 1 to 2 minutes. (Or, place ingredients in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave until butter melts, 1 to 2 minutes; stir until combined.)
Pour butter mixture over oat mixture and toss until oats and nuts are completely coated. Transfer to a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet and spread in an even layer.
Bake until oats are lightly golden, 30 to 35 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes. Let cool completely; stir in apricots. (Store in an airtight container at room temperature, up to 3 weeks.)
Saveur (Alaina): This is consistently a great magazine full of information and great recipes. They nearly always include international recipes which I really like.
Sandwiches was the tantalizing theme of this month’s issue. You may recall, that I am crazy about sandwiches. So, of course, I had to feature this magazine in the review. I made two of the over 40 sandwich recipes. It was a little hard to narrow it down! They were quite different but both were popular with my crew.
The first was the Elena Cruz – yes, I partly chose it because it shares my name and also because it sounded delicious – it was. The second was the California. Yum. I made it as written and then after I tried it that way and loved it, I added some bacon and loved it even more. Sigh. Sandwich Nirvana. There are so many more to try…
CALIFORNIA SANDWICH
Saveur, April 2011
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¼ cup buttermilk
¼ cup sour cream
¼ cup mayonnaise
1 tbsp. finely chopped chives
1 tbsp. finely chopped parsley
½ tsp. garlic powder
¼ tsp. onion powder
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 slices multigrain sandwich bread
2 slices Monterey Jack cheese
½ cup alfalfa sprouts
1 avocado, peeled, pitted, and thinly sliced lengthwise
1 ripe tomato, cored and thinly sliced
Whisk together buttermilk, sour cream, mayonnaise, chives, parsley, and garlic and onion powders in a small bowl. Season with salt and pepper, and spread on all bread slices. Place 1 slice cheese each on 2 slices of bread and top with sprouts, avocado, and tomato. Season with salt and pepper, and cover with remaining 2 slices of bread.
Makes 2 sandwiches (You will have extra sauce, which would be delicious as a salad dressing.)

ELENA RUZ (Cuban Turkey Tea Sandwich)
Saveur, April 2011
Print This Recipe
1 Cuban roll or brioche bun
2 tbsp. cream cheese, softened
2 tbsp. strawberry jam
3 oz. sliced turkey breast
1 tbsp. unsalted butter
Split roll, spread cream cheese on bottom half, and top with turkey. Spread jam on top half of roll and close sandwich. Heat butter in a 10″ skillet over medium heat; cook sandwich, weighing down with a cast-iron skillet and turning once, until golden brown and heated through, 3–4 minutes. Cut in half, and serve hot.
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Simple Suppers: Turkey-Veggie Skillet

I don’t know about you, but I definitely have evenings where I wonder what in the world I’m going to pull out for supper. Monday night we were just back from a weekend of holiday-ing. I’d worked and then grocery shopped my way home and still, to my tired eyes and brain, my fridge looked bare. However, I remembered some leftover Thanksgiving turkey in the freezer. With minimal chopping, some seasonings and a bit of heavy cream, we had a filling and delicious supper. I served this over steamed broccoli, but it would be just as delicious over rice or pasta.

So, for the next time you have a what’s-for-supper moment, perhaps this recipe will be a source of inspiration. Any veggies you have on hand would easily work.

TURKEY-VEGGIE SKILLET
Print This Recipe

olive oil and/or butter
8 oz mushrooms, chopped
2 carrots, shredded
1 large onion, chopped
8 oz fresh spinach (I chopped mine because I preferred it small)
2 cloves garlic, minced
Cooked, chopped turkey (or chicken)
salt and pepper to taste
heavy cream or bechamel sauce

Heat olive oil and butter in a saute pan over medium heat. Add mushrooms, onions, carrots, and garlic. Saute until onions start to soften and become translucent.

Add spinach and saute about 1 minute before adding chopped turkey. Season with salt and pepper. Cook another couple of minutes to heat turkey.

Add moderate amount of heavy cream (this honestly depends on the quantity in the skillet, you just want enough to cover everything, but not be drowning in cream) and simmer until cream thickens slightly. Serve over steamed veggies, rice, or pasta.

Holiday Feast: Turkey

So, last week I made my very first turkey. I had made turkey breasts before but never a whole turkey. It will not be my last. This recipe made an amazingly moist and deliciously flavored turkey. I’m including the gravy recipe which I did not strictly follow but I’m sure is just as delicious.

Heather is also contributing turkey soup which is a perfect way to use up leftover turkey and to cook up the carcass.

turkey

SAGE BUTTER-ROASTED TURKEY with Cider Gravy (Alaina)
(Bon Appetit, November 2009)

For the Turkey:
3 Tb. coarse kosher salt
1 Tb. dried rubbed sage
1 16- to 18-lb. turkey, innards removed and bird is rinsed and patted dry (save the neck, heart, and gizzard  if you are making turkey stock – I did not do that)
1/4 c. (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
1/4 c. chopped fresh sage
3/4 c. fresh refrigerated apple cider or fresh refrigerated apple juice

Rub salt and dried sage together in small bowl. Place turkey in roasting pan; sprinkle all over with sage salt. Cover pan with plastic wrap; chill turkey overnight (I chilled for about 6-8 hours).

Set rack at lowest position in oven and preheat to 375°F. Pat turkey dry. Tuck wing tips under; tie legs together loosely (mine were already tied). Stir butter and chopped sage in small saucepan over low heat until butter melts. Brush all over turkey; sprinkle with pepper.

Roast turkey 1 hr.; baste with any pan juices. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F. Roast turkey 45 min. Pour 3/4 c. apple cider over; turn pan around. Continue to roast turkey until instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of thigh registers 165°F, basting and turning pan occasionally for even cooking, about 1 1/4 hrs. longer. Transfer turkey to platter; tent loosely with foil and let rest 30 to 45 min. (internal temperature will rise 5 to 10 degrees).

 

gravy
For the Gravy:
2 c. (or more) turkey stock or low-salt chicken broth (I used broth)
3/4 c. fresh refrigerated apple cider or fresh refrigerated apple juice
2 Tb. all purpose flour
2 to 3 Tb. Calvados (apple brandy) or applejack brandy (I did not have either)
1 Tb. chopped fresh sage

Pour all pan juices into large measuring cup. Spoon off fat that rises to surface. Transfer 2 Tb. fat to heavy large saucepan; discard remaining fat. Place turkey roasting pan over 2 burners. Add 2 c. stock or broth and 3/4 c. cider. Bring to boil over high heat, scraping up browned bits. Boil liquid until reduced to 1 1/2 c., about 6 min. Add mixture from roasting pan to degreased pan juices. If necessary, add enough stock to measure 3 1/2 c stock mixture.

Place saucepan with turkey fat over medium-high heat. Add flour; whisk 2 min. Whisk in stock mixture. Boil until gravy thickens enough to coat spoon thinly, about 6 min. Whisk in  Calvados, or more to taste, and sage. Season with salt and pepper.

Serve turkey &  gravy together.

Here are a few of my turkey tips:
– Allow time to thaw.
– Check the neck as well as the cavity for innards.
– Make sure your thermometer is accurate or that the turkey comes with one that pops up.
– Don’t stress – it’s really not that hard!

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      The taste of homemade turkey soup is deeply satisfying. After all the work and effort of the Thanksgiving meal, this soup can be put on the stove and nearly forgotten for most of the next day, with just a few additions just before serving.

      HOMEMADE TURKEY SOUP
      (Heather)

      STOCK:
      1 turkey carcass
      1 onion, peeled and quartered
      3 carrots, peeled and halved
      2-3 stalks celery, cut in 6-inch pieces

      SOUP:
      1 pound carrots, shredded
      1/2 bunch celery, chopped
      noodles

      Place the turkey carcass in a large pot and fill with water (ideally to cover the carcass, but if that’s not possible, as far up the pot as safe for cooking). Add the onion, carrots and celery. Bring to a boil and simmer for several hours (I covered my pot and left it for 3-4 hours). Turn off the heat and let the soup cool some.

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      When cool enough to handle, strain the broth into another pan and pick all the meat of the carcass. Put the meat in the pot with the strained broth and add the grated carrot and chopped celery. Bring to a boil and add noodles of your choice (I chose thin spaghetti broken into 1 1/2-inch pieces). You can also throw in cooked rice or barley instead of noodles. Simmer until the noodles are finished cooking. Season with salt and pepper.