Sunday, June 21, 2009

Got Basil?

Basil Cheese Torte
1-8 ounce package of room temp cream cheese
4 ounces of regular feta cheese
2 tablespoons butter
1 package of pesto
2 packages of provolone cheese slices
¼ cup roasted pine nuts
Roasted red pepper salsa- recipe to follow
Process cream cheese, feta and butter until nice and smooth.
Stir in pesto- you can make your own, but if you don’t have your own use from jar or out of the refrigerator section of your local store.
Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap; allow at least 1 inch over hang.
Arrange 1/3 of the cheese slices on bottom and up the sides of the pan.
Layer with ½ of the pesto cheese mixture.
Cover with ½ the roasted red pepper salsa- make this before you start- recipe is coming
Cover with 2 tablespoons of the pine nuts.
Another layer of the cheese slices just across the bottom.
Repeat layers ending with cheese slices.
Fold in your over hanging cheese to center.
Fold over the plastic wrap and chill.
This will freeze.
I like to make this in mini loaf pans and take out of the freezer as needed.
PLEASE don’t use no fat cream cheese- I do use the 1/3 fat- but belch to the no fat anything!

Roast Red Pepper Salsa
4 red peppers roasted in the oven under the broiler and wrapped in foil to steam.
Pell off the skins and chop.
Okay, you say you don’t know how to do this?
Just buy the ones in the jar’s but remember- THEY WILL NOT BE AS GOOD!
Add to peppers:
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoon of fresh chopped basil- really it has to be fresh it is so much better!
2 cloves of crushed garlic
1/3 cup of sun dried tomatoes from a jar or do the water in the microwave and squeeze them out a bit and chop up.
½ teaspoon salt
ground pepper
Mix this all together.
Use this just anyway you want to other then this recipe it is great with goat cheese as well!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Beef or Pork Bulgogi; from” The Frugal Gourmet” with a few changes added.

Last night we had a friend drop in and we asked him to stay and have dinner with us.
I had no idea what I would fix, but with stuff coming in from the garden I knew I could come up with something.
I had a chuck roast I had pulled from the freezer which was thawing away. I put it in the microwave to thaw a little faster and then I was putting on the thinking cap," what are we going to do with this roast?"
I pulled the roast out and knew I had to move things along more and cutting it up was the way to go.
If the beef is still a tad frozen- just a tad it makes the cutting easier.
As I sliced and then cut into bite size pieces I knew I would do some form of a stir fry.....
Boom or click! The light came on Beef Bulgogi! It is a favorite of ours and you can not go wrong with this dish.
I have eaten it cooked by visiting Korean Potters and from Korean restaurants. Everyone has their own favorite way to cook this.
So with that done and Mark putting on rice to cook. I went out for the last of the red lettuce and some fresh herbs.
I washed the lettuce and herbs and then took the large hand full of the first green beans. Cleaned the green beans and cook them quick in salted water until just done- out and quick cooled.
The salad was: lettuce with cucumbers from the garden
grated carrot from out friends garden and topped with the cooled green beans.
I make a dressing of coarse ground mustard, olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

I took fresh young yellow squash, cut them in half and pan fried them with a pat of butter until brown on each side--- on Yum -I like my squash like I like my men: Young, tender and a little crooked.
Cooked up the Beef Bulgogi and we were good to go.
A little red wine and the evening was set.

Beef or Pork Bulgogi; from,” The Frugal Gourmet” with a few changes added.
The marinade:
3 tablespoons of good soy sauce
1 tablespoon of sugar
1 ½ tablespoons of sesame oil
1 tablespoon of sesame salt
few ground of black pepper
4 scallions chopped about 1 inch
3 cloves of garlic crushed
1 ½ or just go for 2 teaspoons of fresh grated ginger
1-2 tablespoons of sake’
a good hit of red pepper flakes- you can always add more hot later- but you can not take it out.
I don’t like it hot- Mark does.
I add:
At least one tablespoon fresh coriander and some fresh parsley
Cut up about 2 pounds of good grass fed beef. Oh, you can use the stuff from the store, but I promise you it is not as good.
Mix the marinade in a pottery bowl ( from Whynot pottery).
Pour over beef which is also in a pottery bowl ( from Whynot Pottery)
Toss well and let marinade at least 30 minutes.
Heat a pan on high heat and use a non flavored oil or peanut oil.
Cook the meat until just done- just a few minutes.
Garnish with sesame seeds and a few fresh herbs.