FMB: Farmers Market Bag

Farmers’ Market Box January 16th 2020


 

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Hidden Rose Apples - Dragon Berry Produce
Baby Broccoli - Her Produce
Nantes Carrots - Weiser Family Farms
Meyer Lemons – Chocolate Mountain Ranch
Salanova LettuceD’Acquisto Family Farms
Calcot OnionsCrows Pass Farms
O’Henry Sweet Potatoes - Kong Thao
Clementine Tangerines - Rancho Del Sol

Farmer’s Choice:

Trumpet Royale Mushrooms - Mycopia Mushrooms
Tarocco Blood Oranges - Murray Family Farms

Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #specialtyproducefmb or share them with the FMB community on our facebook page http://facebook.com/specialtyproduce!

When it’s about food…#specialtyproduce
Click the links above & search for products on our website with recipes attached Below are some great recipes for you to try out with the produce from your box/bag. Let us know on our Facebook Page or through twitter if you tried any of them with the hashtag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!


Farmers’ Market Box Recipes

 
Salanova Salad with Meyer Lemon Vinaigrette
Serves 4-6

One head Salanova lettuce, washed and spun dry
2 Calcot onions, thinly sliced using the white and tender green parts
1/4 cup Meyer lemon juice
2 teaspoons sugar
1 tablespoon finely chopped oregano
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper

1. Put the lettuce into a salad bowl.
2. Measure out 1 tablespoon of onion and add it to a small mixing bowl. Sprinkle the rest of the onion over the salad.
3. Add the lemon juice, sugar, oregano, Dijon and oil to the onion, and whisk until thickened. Season with salt and pepper. The dressing will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
4. Toss the lettuce with some of the dressing and serve.

 
Grilled Lemon Chicken
Serves 6-8

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/3 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon dried rosemary
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
8 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves

1. In a zipper-top plastic bag, combine the oil, lemon juice, rosemary, salt, pepper, and garlic, shaking to blend. Add the chicken, turning to coat it, and seal.
1. Do-Ahead: At this point, refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days. Bring to room temperature before continuing.
2. Build a hot charcoal fire or preheat a gas grill, or a grill pan or the broiler for 10 minutes. Remove the chicken from the marinade and grill or place on a baking sheet lined with aluminum foil or a silicone liner and broil until cooked through, about 3 to 5 minutes per side.
3. Do-Ahead: At this point, you can let cool, cover, and refrigerate for up to 8 hours or freeze for 6 weeks. Serve cold or bring to room temperature before serving.
Variation: Substitute dried oregano or marjoram for the rosemary.

 
Chicken Piccata
Serves 4-6

6 skinless boneless chicken breast halves
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, room temperature
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
Additional all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (depending on the acidity, you may need up to 1/2 cup)
1/4 cup chicken broth
1/2 cup drained capers, chopped if large
1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley

1. Place chicken between 2 large sheets of plastic wrap. Using meat pounder or rolling pin, lightly pound chicken to 1/4-inch thickness. Sprinkle chicken with salt and pepper.
2. Mix 1 tablespoon butter and 1 1/2 tablespoons flour in small bowl until smooth.
3. Place additional flour in shallow baking dish. Dip chicken into flour to coat; shake off excess.
4. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in each of 2 heavy large skillets. Add 2 chicken breasts to each skillet and cook until golden and cooked through, about 2 to 3 minutes per side. Transfer chicken to platter; tent with foil to keep warm.
5. Bring wine, lemon juice and broth to boil in 1 skillet over medium-high heat. Whisk in butter-flour mixture and boil until sauce thickens slightly, about 2 minutes.
6. Stir in capers, parsley and remaining 2 tablespoons butter.
7. Season sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Add the chicken back to the sauce and turn in the sauce. Serve the chicken over orzo pasta, napping with some of the sauce.

 
Beef and Baby Broccoli Stir Fry
Serves 4

⅓ cup Mirin rice wine, dry sherry or sake
4 tablespoons soy sauce
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 pound flank steak, sliced thin against the grain
¼ cup oyster sauce
1/2 teaspoon chile-garlic sauce, or to taste
½ cup plus 1 tablespoon canola or peanut oil
1 bunch baby broccoli, the head cut into florets and the stems peeled and cut into planks
1 Calcot onion, thinly sliced on the diagonal, using the white and tender green parts

1. In a large bowl, whisk together the wine, 2 tablespoons of the soy sauce and the cornstarch. Add the beef to the bowl, and toss to combine, then cover the bowl, and set aside for 20 minutes or so.
2. To make the sauce, in a small bowl combine the remaining soy sauce, the oyster sauce and the chile-garlic sauce, and mix to combine, then add a tablespoon of water and mix again. Set aside.
3. Heat the 1/2 cup of oil in a wok or large skillet set over high heat. When the oil is hot and shimmering, add about half the beef to the wok, and stir-fry until it is browned and crisp and barely cooked through, about 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl or plate and set aside. Then repeat with remaining beef.
4. Pour off the oil in the wok, wipe it out with a towel and return it to the stove over high heat. Add the remaining tablespoon oil and swirl it around and heat it until it is smoking. Add the broccoli and cook, tossing and stirring frequently, until lightly charred in spots, about 2 minutes.
5. Then return beef to the wok, followed by the sauce and the onions. Cook, stirring and tossing frequently, for 30 seconds or so and serve immediately with rice.

 
Bistro Carrot Salad
Serves 4

One bunch carrot, scraped, and shredded
2 tablespoons Meyer lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons honey
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley

1. Put the carrots into a bowl. In a small bowl, whisk together the vinegar, mustard, honey, cumin and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
2. Pour the dressing over the carrots, add the parsley, and toss to coat. Serve cold.

 
Calcot Onion Dip
Makes About 3 cups

1 pound linguiça or Polish sausage, cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
4 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 bunch kale, tough stems removed, and chopped
One 14.5-ounce can chopped tomatoes and their juice
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Place the sausage in a large pot over medium-low heat and cook until it begins to render its fat, about 2 minutes.
2. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes.
3. Add the garlic and potatoes and cook for 2 minutes. Add the kale and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes longer.
Stir in the tomatoes, chicken broth, vinegar and salt.

 
Salanova Salad with Roasted Apples and Cider Vinaigrette
Serves 4

3 Hidden Rose apples, cored, and cut into quarters
Raw sugar
1 head Salanova, washed and spun dry
¼ cup apple cider
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
¾ cup vegetable or canola oil
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/2 cup chopped toasted pecans

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, line a baking sheet with silicone, parchment or aluminum foil.
2. Dip the cut edges of the apples into the sugar and arrange cut side down on the prepared sheet pan.
3. Roast for 25 to 30 minutes until golden brown. Set aside.
4. While the apples are roasting, put the Salanova into a salad bowl.
5. In another bowl, whisk together the cider, vinegar, brown sugar, mustard and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
6. Toss the Salanova with some of the dressing and plate the salad. Arrange some of the apple wedges on the salad, top with the blue cheese and pecans and serve.

 
Braised Chicken with Apples
Serves 4-6

1/2 cup unsalted butter
Salt and pepper
6 boneless skinless chicken breasts
1 large onion, thinly sliced into 1/2 moons
3 apples, peeled, cored, and cut into wedges
1/4 cup firmly packed brown sugar
2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup apple cider
1/2 cup chicken broth
1/4 cup heavy cream (optional)
Salt and pepper

1. In a large skillet, heat 1/4 cup of the butter, season the chicken with salt and pepper, and brown the chicken on both sides. Remove to a plate and cover with aluminum foil.
2. Melt the remaining butter, and saute the onion, apples, sugar and thyme, until the onions are golden brown—this may take 10 minutes.
3. Add the cider and chicken broth, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Add the chicken back to the skillet, and simmer, uncovered for 20 to 25 minutes until the chicken cooked through. (160 degrees on an instant read meat thermometer)
4. Add the cream (if using) season with salt and pepper and serve. This is delicious with rice, or buttered noodles.

 
Clementine Salsa
Makes about 2 cups

This is a great condiment to serve with grilled chicken, seafood or pork.

1 1/2 cups peeled clementines, chopped
1/2 cups chopped cherry or pear tomatoes
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup finely chopped Italian parsley
1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely copped
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt

1. In a mixing bowl, combine the ingredients, season with salt, cover and refrigerate for at least 2 hours before serving. The salsa will keep in the refrigerator for up to 1 week.

 
Pistachio Lemon Bars
Makes about nine 2-inch squares

For the Crust

1 cup flour
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/4 cup chopped pistachios
1/2 cup chilled unsalted butter, cut into small bits

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and coat the inside of a 9-inch square baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a mixing bowl, using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture is grainy.
3. Press the crust into the pan and bake for 20 minutes.

For the Filling

2 large eggs
1 cup sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 tablespoons flour
1/3 cup lemon juice
1/3 cup shelled pistachios
confectioner’s sugar for garnish

1. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, baking powder, flour and lime juice.
2. Pour over the hot crust and sprinkle the top evenly with pistachios.
3. Bake another 20 minutes, until the filling is set.
4. Remove from the oven and immediately cut the bars into squares. Sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar, and cool completely. The bars will keep in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Serve at room temperature.

 
Sweet Potato and Chickpea Curry
Serves 6

1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 tablespoon peeled and minced fresh ginger (from a 1-inch piece)
2 garlic cloves, minced
3 tablespoons Thai red curry paste
1 pound medium sweet potatoes peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
1 (13- to 14-ounce) can full-fat coconut milk
1/2 cup water
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
4 cups baby spinach
2 tablespoons lemon juice
Cooked basmati rice, for serving

1. In a deep skillet, heat the oil, add the ginger and garlic and cook, stirring, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the curry paste and sauté for another minute.
2. Add the sweet potatoes, chickpeas, coconut milk, water, salt, and pepper and stir to combine.
3. Bring the mixture to a simmer, cover, and cook until the sweet potatoes are tender and cooked through, about 15 minutes.
4. Stir in the spinach and cook until just wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Serve over rice if desired.

 
Sweet Potato Hash
Serves 6

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound scrubbed sweet potatoes cut into 1/2-inch dice
3 large cloves garlic, minced
8 sage leaves, minced
Freshly ground black pepper
6 large eggs
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Grated Parmigiano Reggiano for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with aluminum foil, silicone or parchment.
2. Melt the butter and olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat.
3. Add the onions and lower the heat to medium and cook, stirring occasionally until they are a light golden brown.
4. Place the sweet potatoes, onions, salt, sage, black pepper in a large bowl and toss to combine. Transfer to the baking sheet and spread into an even layer.
5. Roast until the sweet potatoes are soft and browned, 30 to 45 minutes (roasting time depends on the size and uniformity of the sweet potato chunks, as well as the variety of sweet potato you buy).
6. Using the back of a large spoon, make 6 wells in the hash. Crack an egg into each well. Season the eggs with salt and pepper.
7. Bake until the eggs are done to your liking, 8 to 10 minutes. Test the eggs by prodding them with a fork to check the firmness of the white and the yolk.
8. Serve immediately, with shavings or sprinkles of Parmigiano cheese, if desired.
  

 
Steamed Baby Broccoli with Clementine Hollandaise
Serves 4

1 pound baby broccoli, stems peeled
Salt and pepper
3 large egg yolks
1/4 tsp salt
Few drops Tabasco
2 tablespoons Clementine juice
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and kept warm

1. Put the broccoli into a steamer, and steam for 3 to 5 minutes until just tender. Season with salt and pepper.
2. In the container of a blender, combine the egg yolks, salt, tabasco and Clementine juice.
3. With the machine running pour in the hot butter, and blend until thickened. Taste for seasoning and pour over the broccoli to serve.

 
Blood Orange Sangria
Serves 6

1 (750mL) bottle white wine, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Gris, Sauvignon Blanc, or Chenin Blanc
2 blood oranges, sliced
2 Meyer lemons, sliced
1/4 cup superfine sugar
1 (750mL) bottle Prosecco
Sprigs of mint for garnish

1. In a large pitcher, whisk together white wine, oranges, lemons and sugar.
2. Let chill in refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight.
3. Just before serving add the Prosecco and serve garnished with mint if desired.

 
Blood Orange Salad with Pistachios
Serves 4

One head Salanova, washed, spun dry and chopped
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons blood orange juice
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 cup olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
6 blood oranges, peel and pith removed, and sliced 1/2-inch thick
2 Calcot onions, thinly sliced, using the white and tender green parts
1 bunch of mint, julienned and a few leaves torn
1/2 cup crumbled Feta
1/3 cup pistachios, chopped for garnish

1. Put the Salanova into a salad bowl.
2. In a mixing bowl whisk together the vinegar, juice, honey, and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Toss the Salanova with the dressing and arrange on a serving platter.
4. Garnish with blood orange slices, onions, mint, feta and pistachios. Drizzle with more dressing and serve at room temperature.

 
Roasted Trumpet Mushrooms
Serves 4

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
3/4 pound royal trumpet mushrooms, stems trimmed, and sliced in half lengthwise

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with silicone, aluminum foil, or parchment.
2. In a large bowl, combine the oil, vinegar, salt, pepper, garlic, and rosemary. Add the mushrooms and toss to coat.
3. Spread the mixture and the liquid onto the prepared baking sheet and roast for 15 to 20 minutes, shaking the pan once, until the mushrooms are golden brown and some of the liquid has absorbed.
4. Serve the mushrooms warm or at room temperature. They make a delicious side dish, or can be served over tossed greens, or can be a garnish for grilled meats.

 
@Diane Philips  www.dianephillips.com  Blog:  www.cucinadivina.blogspot.com

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Farmers’ Market Box January 9th 2020


 

This week’s local produce and featured farms:

Hidden Rose Apples - Dragon Berry Produce
Fuerte Avocadoes - Schaner Farms
Dandelion Greens - Terra Madre Gardens
KaleD’Acquisto Family Farms
Butter LettuceD’Acquisto Family Farms
Garnet Yams – Her Produce
Red Beets - Black Sheep Produce
Lee Tangerines - Rancho Del Sol

Farmer’s Choice:

Strawberries - J.R. Organics
Tarocco Blood Oranges - Murray Family Farms

Post your photos on Instagram with the hashtag #specialtyproducefmb or share them with the FMB community on our facebook page http://facebook.com/specialtyproduce!

When it’s about food…#specialtyproduce
Click the links above & search for products on our website with recipes attached Below are some great recipes for you to try out with the produce from your box/bag. Let us know on our Facebook Page or through twitter if you tried any of them with the hashtag #SpecialtyProduceFMB!


Farmers’ Market Box Recipes

 
Hidden Rose Tart Tatin
Serves 4

1 sheet puff pastry, defrosted and kept cold
Flour for rolling the puff pastry
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
3/4 cup sugar
3 hidden rose apples, peeled, cored and quartered

1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Line a baking sheet with a silicone liner or parchment paper and set aside.
2. On a floured board, roll out the dough until it is 1/8-inch thick. Cut the dough into a circle 1-inch larger than the diameter of your baking pan. Prick the dough all over with the tines of a fork and transfer it to the baking sheet. Refrigerate the dough while you work on the apples.
3. In a 10-inch ovenproof skillet, or tart tatin pan, melt the butter, tilting the pan so the sides have a thin coating of butter.
4. Sprinkle the sugar over the butter, and fit a layer of apples into the skillet, with the rounded side down and making concentric circles. Make sure to pack in the apples because they will shrink as they cook—-you want them snug in the pan.
5. When you have a snug layer, cut the remaining apples in half and sprinkle them over the first layer. Put the pan over medium heat and cook, until the sugar begins to turn a deep caramel color—you will see it bubbling up the side of the pan—this will take at least 15 minutes and up to 30 depending on your pan.
6. Transfer the skillet or the baking dish to the baking sheet.
7. Cover the apples with the pastry, loosely tucking in any overhang.
8. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes, until the basket is baked through and puffed.
9. Cover the skillet with a large rimmed serving plate and turn the tart out onto the platter and remove the pan. If any of the apples have stuck to the pan, gently lift them off the pan with an off-set spatula and press them onto the tart. Cool 10 minutes before serving with unsweetened crème fraiche.

 
Butter Lettuce with Blue Cheese Vinaigrette
Serves 8

A distant cousin of the wedge, this is a delicious salad that looks awesome on the plate.

One head butter lettuce, washed, spun dry and cut into 4 wedges, leaving the core intact
1/4 cup white vinegar
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire
1 garlic clove, minced
2 tablespoons finely chopped Italian parsley
1/3 cup crumbled gorgonzola or your favorite blue cheese
Salt and pepper

1. Place the lettuce wedge onto a salad plate.
2. In a mixing bowl, whisk together the vinegar, sugar, mustard, Worcestershire, garlic, and parsley.
3. Stir in the blue cheese, and season with salt and pepper. The dressing will keep in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.
4. Pour some of the dressing over the wedges and serve.

 
Sautéed Dandelion Greens
Serves 4

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 bunch red dandelion greens, tough stems removed, cut into 1/2-inch ribbons
Salt and pepper

1. In a large skillet, heat the oil and the garlic, until the garlic is translucent.
2. Add the greens, and saute until wilted, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, remove the garlic, and serve as a bed for grilled meats or poultry.

 
Hasselback Yams
Serves 4

1 pound garnet yams, scrubbed
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons finely chopped shallot
3 garlic cloves, minced
1-1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
2 teaspoons minced fresh parsley
2 teaspoons minced fresh thyme
2 teaspoons minced fresh sage
1/4 cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and coat the inside of a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. Cut a 1/4-inch slice from the bottom of the yam, then cut 1/4-inch slits into the potato from one end to the other, not going all the way through to the bottom of the potato. Lay into the prepared baking dish, with the cut bottom down. Repeat with the remaining potatoes.
3. In a small skillet, heat the butter and oil, add the shallot and garlic, and saute until the shallot is softened.
4. Pour half of the butter/oil mixture over the potatoes and roast for 35 minutes. While the potatoes are roasting, add the salt, pepper, parsley, thyme, and sage to the butter/oil mixture. Pour the butter/oil mixture over the yams and roast another 15 to 20 minutes until the yams are cooked through. Serve the potatoes warm.

 
Tangerine Beef Stir Fry
Serves 4

1/4 cup soy sauce
1/4 cup brown sugar
8 ounces flank steak, cut into 2-inch wide strips with grain, then sliced across grain into 1/8-inch-thick slices
1/2 cup tangerine juice
½ teaspoon toasted sesame oil
1 teaspoon cornstarch
2 medium garlic cloves, minced
1 ½ teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon grated zest
2 teaspoons oyster sauce
¼ teaspoon chile garlic sauce
1/2 teaspoon grated tangerine zest
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup thinly sliced onion
3 ounces snow peas, ends trimmed and strings removed (about 11/2 cups)

1. Combine 1 tablespoons soy sauce, 1 tablespoon brown sugar, and the beef. Set aside to marinate for 30 minutes.
2. In a small bowl, combine the juice, sesame oil, remaining soy sauce, brown sugar, and cornstarch.
3. In another bowl combine the garlic, ginger, zest, oyster sauce, and chile garlic sauce.
4. In a wok or large skillet, over high heat, heat the oil. Add the beef and stir fry for 2 minutes. Remove to a plate.
5. Add the onion and snow peas to the skillet and stir fry to 2 to 3 minutes. Add the garlic zest mixture, stir fry another 1 minute, add the meat and any accumulated juices to the stir fry.
Add the cornstarch mixture to the skillet and cook until the sauce is thickened. Serve over rice.

 
Portuguese Sausage and Greens Soup
Serves 6

1 pound linguiça or Polish sausage, cut into 1/8-inch-thick slices
1 large onion, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, peeled and minced
4 Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch cubes
1 bunch kale, tough stems removed, and chopped
One 14.5-ounce can chopped tomatoes and their juice
4 cups chicken or vegetable broth
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
2 teaspoons salt
Freshly ground pepper to taste

1. Place the sausage in a large pot over medium-low heat and cook until it begins to render its fat, about 2 minutes.
2. Add the onion and cook for 2 minutes.
3. Add the garlic and potatoes and cook for 2 minutes. Add the kale and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 minutes longer.
Stir in the tomatoes, chicken broth, vinegar and salt.

 
Tangerine Shortbread
Makes About 20

3/4 cup sugar
zest from 2 tangerines
2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
1 egg
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
Raw sugar for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees and coat a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with non-stick cooking spray.
2. In a mixing bowl, combine the sugar, zest, butter and vanilla.
3. Blend in the egg, and then add the flour and salt. This will be a thick dough.
4. Evenly press the dough into the prepared pan.
5. Sprinkle the dough with the raw sugar and bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the shortbread is a light golden brown.
6. Cool the shortbread and cut into squares.

 
Avocado Bruschetta
Serves 6-8

For the Bruschetta

One baguette, sliced 1/2-inch thick
Olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, line baking sheets with silicone, aluminum foil, or parchment.
2. Lay the baguette slices onto baking sheets and brush with olive oil.
3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until crunchy.

For the Topping

2 Fuerte avocados, peeled, pitted and finely chopped
1/2 cup diced cherry or pear tomatoes
2 tablespoons finely chopped basil
1 garlic clove, minced
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
Aged balsamic vinegar

1. In a mixing bowl, stir together the avocado, tomatoes, basil, garlic, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
Spread the mixture onto the bruschetta, and drizzle with balsamic vinegar and serve.

 
Beet and Blood Orange Salad
Serves 4

One bunch red beet, tops removed, and scrubbed
3 blood oranges, peel and pith removed, and sliced
2 scallions, finely chopped, using the white and tender green parts
3 tablespoons blood orange juice
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
Salt and pepper
1/2 cup toasted chopped walnuts
1/4 cup finely chopped parsley

1. Steam the beets for 40 to 50 minutes until they are tender. Slip the skins off the beets, slice the beets, and put into a bowl with the blood oranges and scallions.
2. In a small bowl, whisk together the juice, vinegar, sugar, mustard and oil. Season with salt and pepper.
3. Dress the beet mixture with the salad dressing, and serve the salad garnished with walnuts and parsley.

 
Crostini with Balsamic Strawberries
Serves 6

For the Crostini

1 baguette, sliced 1/2-inch thick
Olive oil
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees, and line a baking sheet with silicone, aluminum foil or parchment.
2. Lay the slices onto the baking sheet and brush with oil.
3. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes until crunchy.

For the Strawberries

2 baskets strawberries, hulled and thinly sliced
1/4 cup aged balsamic vinegar
1/4 cup finely chopped basil
One 11-ounce log goat cheese

1. Put the berries into a bowl, toss with the vinegar and basil. Leave at room temperature until ready to serve.
2. Spread the goat cheese onto the crostini and top with the strawberries. Serve at room temperature.

 
Blood Orange Poppy Seed Shortcakes
Makes 12

For the lemon-poppyseed biscuits

3 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup sugar
1-1/2 Tablespoons baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup blood orange zest
2 Tablespoons poppyseeds
3/4 cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1-1/4 cups heavy cream, plus about 3 Tbs. for brushing
1/4 cup fresh blood orange juice
1. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Sift the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
2. Add the zest and poppyseeds and toss with a fork to combine.
3. Cut the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry cutter or a fork until the largest pieces of butter are the size of peas.
4. Combine the cream and juice in a liquid measure. Make a well in the center of the flour mixture and pour the cream mixture into the well.
5. Mix with a fork until the dough is evenly moistened and just combined; it should look shaggy and still feel a little dry.
6. Gently knead by hand five or six times to pick up any dry ingredients remaining in the bottom of the bowl and to create a loose ball.
7. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat it into an 8-inch square, 3/4 to 1 inch thick. Transfer the dough to the parchment-lined baking sheet, cover with plastic wrap, and chill for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 425°F.
8. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and trim about 1/4 inch from each side to create a neat, sharp edge.
9. Cut the dough into 9 even squares (about 2-1/2 inches square) and spread them about 2 inches apart on the baking sheet.
10. With a pastry brush each biscuit with a thin layer of cream and sprinkle generously with sugar.
11. Bake until the biscuits are medium golden brown on top and the bottoms are golden brown, 18 to 20 minutes.

For the berries

2 cups 1/8-inch-thick strawberry slices (from about 1-1/2 pints)
1 to 3 Tbs. granulated sugar, depending on the sweetness of the berries

1. Combine the berries and sugar and allow to macerate at room temperature.

For the blood orange cream

1-1/2 cups heavy cream
2 tablespoons sugar
2 Tablespoons fresh blood orange juice

2. In a bowl, whip the cream until stiff peaks form. Add the sugar and orange juice, and whip again.
To serve, split the biscuits, fill with berries and cream.

 
Blood Orange Upside Down Cake
Serves 8
    1/2 cup unsalted butter
    3/4 cups firmly packed light brown sugar  
    2 blood oranges, peel and pith removed, and sliced 1/4-inch thick

1. Coat the interior of a 10-inch cake pan with non-stick cooking spray and set aside.
2. Melt the butter in a small saucepan on medium heat, then add the brown sugar and stir for a few minutes until the brown sugar is completely combined and melted.
3. Pour the butter/brown sugar mixture over the bottom of the cake pan and arrange the orange slices on the sugar syrup.  Set aside while making the cake batter. 

For the Cake

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla paste or vanilla extract
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
2 large eggs, at room temperature
2/3 cup sour cream
1/4 cup fresh orange juice
2 cups heavy cream, whipped stiffly for garnish

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. In the bowl of an electric mixer, cream the butter and sugar until they are light and fluffy.  Add the vanilla, orange oil, if using.
3. Add the eggs one at a time, mixing well after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl.
4. Mix the sour cream and orange juice together, add with the flour, baking soda and salt, and beat until the mixture comes together and is smooth.
5. Transfer the batter into the prepared pan.  Bake for 45 to 55 minutes until a skewer inserted into the center comes out clean.
6. Transfer the cake pan to a rack and allow to cool for EXACTLY 10 minutes.
7. Turn the cake out onto a serving platter and serve at room temperature.
8. Refrigerate any leftover cake, and re-warm before serving, garnish with whipped cream, crème fraiche or vanilla ice cream.    

 
@Diane Philips  www.dianephillips.com  Blog:  www.cucinadivina.blogspot.com

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