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Archive for the ‘Our Guides’ Category

by Caitlin Saniga

Herbal balsamic vinaigrette

I serve this dressing drizzled over fresh beet greens, roasted beets, and toasted walnuts. Use whatever herbs you have — dill, mint and tarragon might also be nice.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Carrot ginger dressing

This carrot ginger dressing looks and tastes striking with fresh greens, shaved zucchini, edamame, you name it.

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by Caitlin Saniga

Sweet potato balls with smoky cashew aioli

Aioli is a sauce traditionally made with olive, oil, lemon, garlic and egg yolks, but this one’s a little different in that it includes softened raw cashews instead of egg yolks. Plus, smoked paprika is like magic pixie dust. Don’t skimp and grab for regular paprika. Buy a little bottle of the smoked version, and I promise you won’t regret it. I’ll be looking for new ways to incorporate it, so stay tuned. My first experiment was to add it to hummus — delicious!

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by Sarah Steimer

I've made this bread a few times now and haven't been disappointed yet.

I’ve made this bread a few times now and haven’t been disappointed yet. I like to make up the dough right before bed and let it sit overnight. This recipe doesn’t require much hassle, just patience.

  • 1 1/2 cups wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon instant or rapid-rise yeast
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons water at room temperature
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons mild-flavored lager (I used Harp)
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar

Whisk together the flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl. Add the water, beer and vinegar. Use a spatula to gently fold the dry ingredients

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Bread might seem like kind of a big deal, but you probably have most of the ingredients in your home right now. Don’t have a Dutch oven? Ask around, chances are someone you know has one you could borrow. Plus, using the parchment paper pretty much guarantees you’ll get it back to them as clean as you got it.

together until a shaggy ball forms. Cover the bowl with a towel and let sit at room temperature — away from any drafts — for 8 to 18 hours.

Place a 12-by-18-inch sheet of parchment paper inside of a 10-inch skillet and lightly spray or brush the paper with oil. Set aside.

Working on a lightly floured surface, knead the dough 10-15 times. Shape the dough into a ball by tucking the edges underneath. Place the dough, seam-side down, on the parchment-covered skillet and spray or brush the dough with oil. Cover the dough loosely with plastic wrap and let rise at room temperature for about 2 hours, or until the dough has doubled in size.

About 30 minutes before baking, place a Dutch oven with its lid into the oven and preheat to 425 degrees. NOTE: Make sure you check what your Dutch oven’s maximum temperature — particularly the lid’s handle. If your Dutch oven can only withstand heat up to 400 degrees, reduce to 400 instead of 425.

Remove the plastic wrap from the dough. Dust a little all-purpose flour on the top of the dough and use a sharp knife to one 6-inch long, 1/2-inch deep slit along the top of the dough.

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The first time I made this bread, Bill asked if we could open a sandwich shop. Because the clear next move after making one loaf of bread in a Dutch oven is opening your own business. I can’t say I didn’t think about it…

Carefully remove the pot from the oven. Pick the dough up by the parchment paper and place into the Dutch oven, allowing the paper to overhang a bit. Place the lid on the pot and return to the oven. Bake, covered, for 30 minutes. Remove the lid from the pot and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until the bread is golden brown and makes a hollow sound when you knock on the bread.

Remove the bread from the Dutch oven using the parchment paper. Let the bread cool on a wire rack for about 2 hours, or until room temperature.

Makes one loaf of bread.

Recipe adapted from: Cooks Illustrated via Erin Cooks

*We’re loving the smell of fresh bread wafting from our ovens in February. See all of our On the Rise bread recipes here.

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by Sarah Steimer

I enjoyed my grapefruit sour with a handful of spicy peanuts --- a little salute to the south.

I paired my grapefruit sour with a handful of spicy peanuts — so Southern. By the way, my drink may look darker than yours. The honey I used is a very dark buckwheat honey.

  • juice from 1 grapefruit, strained
  • 4 ounces bourbon
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • ice

In a small sauce pan, combine the honey and water and whisk over medium-low heat until the honey has dissolved. Bring the mixture to a boil and remove from heat to cool.

Combine the bourbon and grapefruit juice and shake with ice. NOTE: If you do not have a cocktail shaker, just stir the mixture around with the ice in a bowl on shake up in a jar with a lid. Add the honey simple syrup to taste.

Strain the drink into a glass over additional ice and serve.

Makes about 2-3 servings.

Recipe adapted from: Marcus Samuelsson

*We’re taking advantage of the winter citrus season (and healthy New Year’s resolutions) during the month of January. Look for six drink recipes focused on lemons, limes, grapefruits, oranges and more. Find all the Fresh-squeezed recipes here.

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by Sarah Steimer

Freshest juice ever! I juiced and strained everything one evening when I had free time and stored the citrus juices and pomegranate juice separately. You could just mix the pomegranate juice in the same pitcher as the citrus, but I like how it settles toward the bottom when added right before serving.

Freshest juice ever! I juiced and strained everything one evening when I had free time and stored the citrus juices and pomegranate juice separately. You could mix the pomegranate juice in the same pitcher as the citrus, but I like how the pom settles toward the bottom when added right before serving.

  • 2 pomegrantes OR about 1 1/2 cups pomegranate juice
  • 2 grapefruits
  • 2 oranges (I used navel oranges)
  • 2 tangerines OR mineola tangelos
  • 1/2 lime

    I sort of expected pomegranate juice to require some extravagant extraction that only machines or very patient humans could do. Instead it's just seed, blend and strain.

    I sort of expected pomegranate juice to require some extravagant extraction that only machines or very patient humans could do. Instead it’s just seed, blend and strain.

If you choose to make your own pomegranate juice, simply seed the fruits and rinse. Add the pomegranate seeds to a blender and puree for only a couple of seconds; pureeing too long will create a cloudy juice. Pour the blended seeds through a fine mesh strainer, using a spatula to extract as much juice as possible. Set the pomegranate juice aside.

Juice the citrus fruits and pour through a fine mesh strainer to remove any pulp or seeds.

Divide the citrus juice among three glasses, adding the pomegranate juice last so it can settle toward the bottom.

Makes about three servings.

Recipe adapted from: Martha Stewart

*We’re taking advantage of the winter citrus season (and healthy New Year’s resolutions) during the month of January. Look for six drink recipes focused on lemons, limes, grapefruits, oranges and more. Find all the Fresh-squeezed recipes here.

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by Sarah Steimer

I would definitely place this biscotti in the after-dinner category, with either coffee or black tea.

I would definitely place this biscotti in the after-dinner category, with either coffee or black tea.

  • 1/3 vegetable or canola oil
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/4 cup molasses
  • 2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 tablespoon ground star anise (I couldn’t find ground star anise, so I had to ground my own whole pieces. It was a joy.)
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger
  • 1 cup white chocolate chips for melting

Combine the oil, sugar, eggs and molasses. In another bowl, whisk together the flours, baking powder and spices. Mix the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients with a wooden spoon to form a stiff dough.

Divide the dough in half and shape each half into rolls the length of a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Pat the rolls down to flatten to about a 1/2-inch thickness.

I definitely had some fun with the decorating, and it the chocolate is easier to control than I expected.

I definitely had some fun with the decorating, and the chocolate is easier to control than I expected.

Bake the biscotti at 375 degrees for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.

Cut the biscotti into 1/2-inch thick diagonal slices. Return the biscotti to the baking sheet and bake for another 5 to 7 minutes, laying cut-side up.

Melt the white chocolate in a double boiler or in a microwave. Pour the melted chocolate into a baggie and cut a tiny corner off one end of the baggie to pipe over the biscotti.

Makes about four dozen biscotti.

Recipe adapted from: A New Bloom

*During the month of December, we’re offering some simple biscotti recipes that can be quickly snatched for breakfast with coffee or enjoyed with tea after a long day of holiday preparation. All of our Crunch Time recipes can be found here.

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by Sarah Steimer

This was the first time I ever made a pecan pie, and I had planned to head over to Martha Stewart’s website for the recipe. After talking with my mom, she mentioned my Uncle Steve makes great pecan pie (even though I don’t think she’s ever tried it). I asked him for the recipe and here we have it: The great Stephen Jameson pecan pie. And now I can officially vouch for how good it is.

For the crust:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 6 tablespoons of unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons cold water

Combine the flour, butter, sugar and salt in a medium bowl, mixing until coarse crumbles appear.

Whisk together the vinegar, egg and cold water in a small bowl. Add the liquids to the dry mix and combine with your hands. Form into a ball and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate overnight.

For the filling

  • 1 1/4 cup Grade A maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 tablespoon flour
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped pecans (plus a few halves for garnish, optional)

Whisk all filling ingredients together in a medium bowl.

I plan to freeze this pie (just wrap tightly with plastic wrap and aluminium foil) and take it home for Thanksgiving.

Roll the pie crust dough into about an 11-inch round. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate, allowing about 1/2-inch or so to overhang the edges of the dish — the crust WILL shrink a bit. Poke a few holes in the bottom of the crust and bake for about five minutes at 375 degrees. Remove the crust from the oven and carefully arrange the edges in your preferred design. I took a cue from Caitlin and made an easy criss-cross pattern with the back of a knife.

Carefully add the filling so as not to overflow the crust. Return to the oven (still on 375 degrees). Let bake for about 1 hour, checking it about halfway through. If the crust is beginning to brown too quickly, cover it with aluminium foil or a crust shield (cheap and totally worth it). The pie is ready when the center is still slightly jiggly and has puffed up.

Allow the pie to cool completely before serving. The center will mostly level out once cooled.

Recipe adapted from my Uncle Steve.

*This month we’re featuring classic pies that would be a great dessert at any Thanksgiving table. For the full list of pies, click here.

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by Sarah Steimer

I’ll admit to two issues I had with this pie: the middle sunk in and the apple filling was a little mushier than I had intended. Luckily, neither problem affects how delicious this pie is. To avoid a sinking crust, I should have used my handy little pie bird. The mushiness, however, is sometimes unavoidable because it depends so heavily on the apples themselves, which you have little control over.

Follow this recipe for the cheddar crust (I previously used it to make a blueberry pie — I love it).

For the filling:

  • about 6 Granny Smith apples, or other good pie apples such as Cortland (may need to increase the number), cut into 1/4-inch wedges
  • 1/4 cup good-quality honey
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 egg, beaten

Combine all ingredients in a bowl.

Cut the refrigerated dough in half. Roll the one half into a 13-inch circle. Place the circle into a 10-inch pie dish, allowing the dough to sink into shape, and refrigerate. Roll out the second half of the dough into another circle and place onto a piece of wax or parchment paper. Lay flat in the refrigerator. Both should be chilled for about 30 minutes.

A little sunken, but still a really beautiful pie. There’s not a whole lot that looks prettier to me than a big, fresh pie sitting on a kitchen tea towel. Guess who’s already looking forward to her holiday diet?

When ready, remove the dough from the refrigerator and let sit for a few minutes so they’re a little easier to work with — if the crusts are too hard, the top will break when you try to lay it over the apple mound. When ready, spoon the apples into the bottom pie crust (if you’re using a pie bird, put it in now!). Cover with the top crust and press the edges together to seal. Cut off any excess dough at the edges and crimp (optional). Cut a few slits into the top of the crust so the pie may vent.

Place the pie in the freezer for another 30 minutes. Remove and brush the pie with the egg, being sure not to leave any puddles of egg on the crust.

Bake at 425 for 10 minutes. Reduce the oven to 350 and bake for 45 minutes, until golden brown. Tent the pie with foil and bake for another 45 minutes, or until the juices are bubbling.

Let cool for at least an hour and a half before serving.

*This month we’re featuring classic pies that would be a great dessert at any Thanksgiving table. For the full list of pies, click here.

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by Sarah Steimer

Caitlin and I sort of turned this into an international wonton guide. Considering we already did something a bit Asian (mushroom and kale), one that was clearly French (French onion) and a Greek wonton (beef, onion and feta), I figured I’d wander into German/Eastern European territory with this last savory wonton.

  • 15 wonton wrapper
  • 3-inch piece of kielbasa, cut into very small cubes
  • 1 cup sauerkraut (or more)
  • 1/3 of an apple, cut into very small cubes (comes to a little less than 1/4 cup)
  • olive oil
  • paprika

Toss together the kielbasa, sauerkraut and apple in a bowl.

Wet the edges of the wonton that are facing up, working one sheet at a time. Place a heaping tablespoon of the sauerkraut mixture into the center of the wonton. Fold in half, making a triangle, pressing tightly to seal the edges well. Arrange the wontons on a piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet.

These would be an awesome appetizer for an Oktoberfest party. What’s that? You need beer suggestions? Got ’em here.

Brush both sides of the wontons with olive oil and dust just one side with paprika.

Bake the wontons at 400 degrees for about 15-20 minutes, flipping the wontons over about half way through. The wontons should be crispy and golden-brown when they are ready.

For the spicy mustard dipping sauce:

  • 3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon paprika

Whisk together all ingredients and serve with the warm wontons.

Makes 15 wontons.

* Want One? is our October guide that pays homage to the wonton, a traditionally steamed, fried, baked or boiled dumpling that can be filled with an array of goodies. We’ll feature meatless, meat-full and dessert renditions.

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