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Saturday, July 18, 2009

In Season Now! Grilled Caesar Salad and Garlic Scapes ideas.

(photo from Flickr)

This morning on CBC's Weekend Morning Show, hosted today by Laurie Hoogstraten featured some local greens including Romaine lettuce heads for Grilled Caesar Salad and Garlic Scapes, which can be used in a wide range of recipes.

Grilled Caesar Salad

4 whole Romaine Heads – serves 4

Place whole Romaine lettuce heads in a large bowl. Drizzle with olive oil and season. Place over a very hot grill and close BBQ. Turn and score lettuce head completely and then return to large bowl. Season with salt and pepper and toss with some of the following Caesar salad dressing, leaving heads whole. Serve whole Romaine lettuce head, one per serving.

Linda’s Classic Caesar Salad Dressing
1 oz Anchovies (approx 2) – I use anchovy paste
1 Tbls Fresh garlic, pressed
1Tbls Dijon mustard
½ Tbls Worcestershire sauce
1 Egg yolk, coddled
½ cup Good quality virgin olive oil
1 tsp Lemon juice
2 Tbls Red wine vinegar
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
1 cup Seasoned croutons
Freshly ground pepper.

Place anchovies and fresh garlic in wooden salad bowl. Crush into fine paste.
Add Dijon & Worcestershire and stir.
Add egg yolk, stir. SLOWLY add olive oil while continuously stirring.
Add lemon juice, red wine vinegar and ½ the parmesan. Stir.

Garlic Scapes

Garlic scapes are the tender curvy greens that grow from the hardneck variety of garlic. The greens eventually straighten but are at their best when still curly. Cook as you would asparagus with a mild garlic flavour.

Garlic Scape Pesto
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
3 Tbsp. fresh lime or lemon juice
1/4 lb. scapes
1/2 cup olive oil
Salt to taste
Puree scapes and olive oil in a food processor until smooth. Stir in Parmesan and lime or lemon juice and season to taste.

Fried Scapes

Cut scapes to green bean size and saute them in butter and salt for six to eight minutes. During the last minute of cooking add about 1 tsp. of balsamic vinegar.

Spinach and Scape Frittata
3 Tbsp. olive oil
10 eggs
1 cup (1/2 lb.) chopped raw spinach
1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese
1 Tbsp. chopped basil
1/2 c. finely chopped garlic scapes
salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 350°. In a large bowl mix all ingredients except oil and scapes. Heat oil in a 10-inch ovenproof skillet on the stove. Add the scapes and saute until tender on medium heat for about five minutes. Pour egg mixture in skillet with garlic and cook over low for three minutes. Place in oven and bake uncovered for 10 minutes or until top is set. Cut into wedges and serve.


Saturday, July 04, 2009

In Season Now! Pea Shoot Pesto and Rhubarb Slush Cocktail

(photo by Karen)

Recipes as featured on Beverley Watson's CBC Weekend Morning Show this morning with Agatha Moir.

Pea Shoot Pesto
1/4 lb fresh, young pea shoots
1 bunch chives, chopped (or spring onion)
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1/3 cup Parmesan cheese
1/3 cup olive oil
1/4 cup toasted pinenuts

to serve:
1 lb hot cooked pasta (try Nature's Pasta!)
1/2 lb peeled, grilled shrimp (optional)(simple recipe follows)
garnish: additional pea shoots

Place the pea shoots, chives, garlic, cheese, olive oil, pinenuts salt and pepper in a food processor or blender, pulse until a thick paste forms. Toss with 1 lb cooked pasta, additional pea shoots and shrimp.

Yield: about 4 servings

A basic Pesto recipe is so easy to adapt to many available herbs. I love Arugula Pesto as well. For Arugula, use some spinach in the mix to round out the flavour of any particularly peppery variety as well as a splash of lemon juice. For Basil Pesto, I like to use Sweet, Vietnamese, Purple, and many other varieties in the mix to make a complex flavour.

One can use Pesto for a variety of applications as well. I love it in pasta but I often use it in other soups and sauces as well as stuffed in Chicken Breasts, or stuffed in Lamb Chops. When you are letting your BBQ’d steak rest, spoon a small amount onto the steak and let it melt into the grilled meat.


Simple Grilled Shrimp
1/2 lb large shrimp, peeled
1 grapefruit, zested and juiced
1 - 2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup vodka
2-3 tbs. olive oil
salt and pepper

In a non-metallic bowl, mix grapefruit juice, zest, garlic, vodka, olive oil and salt and pepper. Add peeled shrimp, cover and refrigerate for at least one hour. Place marinated shrimp on a hot grill, cover for a minute and then turn when pink with some grill marks. Remove from grill and enjoy as an appetizer, main course or to top the pasta dish.


Ruth's Rhubarb Slush

1 qt. Fresh rhubarb
1 qt water
1 cup sugar.
Stew the rhubarb & sugar. Strain. Add 1 can of frozen lemonade. Pink lemonade adds color. Put into an ice cream pail & add 1 26 oz. Bottle of Vodka. Keep in freezer. When ready to serve fill glass ½ full of rhubarb mixture & add ginger ale or seven up. Enjoy.