Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Posts Tagged ‘lemon’

Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chilies, and Lemon | Relishing It

This dish takes me back to my college years, except this is the grown-up version.  One of my go-to meals in college was a bowl of pasta with a splash of olive oil and a sprinkle of fresh parmesan– eaten with some of my girlfriends, of course.  There was rarely a time that I wasn’t in the mood for it and it always hit the spot.  So very simple.  A few many years later, this still remains a favorite comfort meal of mine, with a few tweaks, of course.

Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chilies, and Lemon | Relishing It

A delicious stunner of a meal doesn’t have to be complicated or take up your entire night to prepare.  This dish takes only minutes. In fact, in the time it takes to boil the water and cook the pasta you are finished.  Not bad, right?

Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chilies, and Lemon | Relishing It

The robust flavors are what make me love this dish.  Pungent garlic, spicy chili peppers, bright lemon juice and zest, fresh nutty parmesan, vibrant parsley, and even an anchovy (if you are so inclined) give this meal a wonderful depth.  You can customize it to fit your family’s needs, of course.  Not into spicy food?  Go ahead and skip the peppers.  I generally double the amount of spice when I make it for myself– I can’t get it hot enough.  The main trick of this dish, is to know that the finished pasta has to be thinned out with some reserved pasta water.  This is key.  The pasta water (containing all of its starches) clings to the pasta and creates a light, creamy sauce with the parmesan and olive oil.  It’s magical.  So, don’t be afraid to loosen it up with that water– it’s a necessity!

Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chiles, and Lemon | Relishing It

Another tip to know is that the garlic, onion, chili pepper, lemon zest, and hot pepper flakes need to be sautéed in the olive oil while the pasta is cooking.  This is important because it infuses the oil with a ton of flavor, but you’ll want to keep the temperature on the low side, so the garlic doesn’t burn.  This is a perfect meal when you are in the mood for delicious comfort food, but are a bit short on time.  Admittedly, this is not one of Radd’s favorite pasta dishes, which stuns me because it’s so amazing (he tends to lean toward the meat-full varieties), so I’ve written the recipe to serve one.  You can easily adjust if you are aiming for a larger portion.  Hope you enjoy!

Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chilies, and Lemon | Relishing It

The Recipe: Simple Pasta with Garlic, Chilies, and Lemon

(serves 1)

3 ounces long pasta (thin spaghetti works well here)

about 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, use more if needed

2 tablespoons finely minced red or white onion, or shallot

2 garlic cloves, finely minced

1 small anchovy, finely minced (optional, of course)

1 red chili pepper, finely minced (scale back or add more according to taste)

sprinkle of hot pepper flakes

zest of 1 lemon

juice of 1/2 lemon

1/4 cup good quality parmesan or grana padano cheese

large handful of freshly chopped parsley

1 cup of reserved pasta water (you most likely will not use all of it)

salt and pepper

Fill a large saucepan with water and bring to a boil.  While the water is heating, chop the ingredients.

Add the dry pasta to the boiling water, be sure to add salt.

While the pasta is cooking, heat a small skillet with olive oil and add the garlic, onion, chili peppers, hot pepper flakes, lemon zest, and anchovy (if using).  Sauté over low-medium heat, stirring regularly.  Keep a watchful eye, so the garlic doesn’t burn.  You want to infuse the olive oil with all the flavors.  The vegetables should be tender by the time the pasta is finished cooking, or even a bit before.

Reserve about 1 cup of the cooking water and set aside.  Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet with the vegetables.  Add most of the cheese (reserving some to sprinkle on top), lemon juice, and a bit of the pasta water.  Combine using tongs.  Add more water, if you want it looser.  Season with a bit of salt and pepper, and top with the remaining parmesan, fresh parsley, and more red pepper flakes.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

 

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas | Relishing It

When I’m developing a new recipe for a meal there are two criteria that generally need to be met.  First, the recipe has to be mostly healthy.  Since I’m the main person that pumps food into my family, I need it to be loaded with nutrients.  Second– and this is the tricky one– I need it to be a meal that my family actually likes and will eat.  Finding this balance is often a challenge, but today’s recipe was spot-on.

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas | Relishing It

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas | Relishing It

Luckily for me, my family actually likes broccoli.  Seriously.  So, if I toss that into a dish I’m already one step to the good.  Here, I also relied on chickpeas for the protein and the texture.  And quinoa is one of my favorite things to build a meal around.  It cooks quickly, has a nice nutty flavor, and happens to be loaded with protein, as well.  Though it looks like a grain, quinoa is actually a seed–so it is gluten-free.

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas | Relishing It

This isn’t a heavy bake loaded with cream or lots of cheese.  It’s simple and clean, if you will.  Aside from the main components of the dish, the subtle flavors of garlic and lemon really come through and work so well together.  I like to use my homemade chicken broth here because I always have it on hand and I love its flavor.  However, if you are vegetarian, feel free to use vegetable broth.  Finishing it with parmesan cheese that has become golden and chopped almonds for the texture is perfect.

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas | Relishing It

One of the best parts about this dish just how easy it is to prepare.  From start to finish, your family will be eating dinner in about 30 minutes.  That’s not bad, especially considering most of that time it is in the oven. And you can feel good about the fact that every bite is healthy for them.  Hope you enjoy!

Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas| Relishing It

The Recipe: Quinoa Bake with Broccoli and Chickpeas

(serves 4)

olive oil

2 cups chopped broccoli

3 garlic cloves, finely minced

1 small red onion, finely chopped (about 1/3 cup)

1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley

13-15 ounces cooked chickpeas (about 1 1/3 cup)

1 cup dry quinoa, rinsed (any color will work)

zest of 1 large lemon

1 1/2 cups chicken broth (heated)

kosher salt and cracked pepper, to taste

handful of parmesan (about 1/2 – 3/4 cup)

handful of chopped roasted almonds, for garnish

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Heat olive oil in a cask-iron skillet, or anything similar. Sauté the onion, garlic, broccoli, and chickpeas for about 3 minutes.  Sprinkle with about 1 teaspoon of salt and some cracked pepper.  Then add the lemon zest, parsley, quinoa, and heated broth.  Make sure all of the quinoa is covered by the broth.  Cover with foil and place in the oven.

Bake for about 20 minutes, or until the quinoa has absorbed all of the liquid and is tender.  Remove from oven.  Place oven rack near the broiler and turn it on.  Sprinkle parmesan over the quinoa and return to oven uncovered.  Broil for just a couple of minutes until the parmesan has turned golden brown.  Keep a watchful eye, as it can burn quickly.  Remove from oven and sprinkle with chopped almonds before serving.  Leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator and reheated easily.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

 

 

Read Full Post »

Happy Hour: Whiskey Sour | Relishing It

It’s Friday, which means it’s practically happy hour!  Today’s cocktail is one of my very favorites.  It’s actually a drink that we enjoy both in the summer and the winter.  Right now we’re enjoying them outside on the patio with plenty of ice.  The lemony-bourbon flavor is a perfect combination– it’s smooth and doesn’t have a strong alcohol taste.  But, what I love most about this cocktail is the froth.  That creamy, silky froth makes this drink darn-near perfect.

Happy Hour: Whiskey Sour | Relishing It

We get requests from our friends and family for this recipe all of the time, so I think it’s safe to say that it’s a winner. I honestly don’t even try to order this one when we’re out anymore because I know I’ll be disappointed– Radd has perfected it.  This version really is the best I’ve ever had.  Full stop. It doesn’t involve a long list of ingredients, but it does involve a few careful steps, which I’ll explain below.  Follow these steps and you’ll achieve a perfect whiskey sour complete with a dreamy foam-top.  You’ll see.  And you’ll love it.  Have a wonderful weekend, everyone–cheers!

Happy Hour: Whiskey Sour | Relishing It

The Recipe: Whiskey Sour

(serves 1)

2 ounces bourbon

1 ounce freshly-squeezed lemon juice (from 1-2 lemons)

1 ounce simple syrup

1/2 egg white

3-4 drops of Angostura bitters

Use a small strainer to collect the pulp and seeds from the freshly-squeezed lemon juice.  Next, in a shaker, combine the bourbon, lemon juice, simple syrup, and 1/2 egg white.  Shake furiously (without ice) for 10 to 15 seconds in order to work the egg white into a nice froth.  Add sufficient ice to the shaker and shake again until chilled.  Pour into an Old Fashioned glass over ice.  Add a lemon twist and 3-4 drops of Angostura bitters to the froth.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

 

 

Read Full Post »

Corpse Reviver No. 2 | Relishing It

The weekend is almost here, and I’m getting a little more giddy by the hour.  I’m smiling thinking of all the possible things to do.  That’s the brilliant thing about Friday, isn’t it?  It’s the potential.   This weekend we don’t have any concrete plans yet, and that makes my mind wander all the more.  Shall we explore these two great cities we live in a bit?  Take a drive out to the farm that’s been growing our CSA food? Find a beautiful lake or river to relax by?  As evening rolls around, perhaps have a cockta…?  Oh wait, that last one was a silly question.  Of course we’ll be having a cocktail.

Corpse Reviver No. 2 | Relishing It

In fact, I can say with some certainty that I’ll be having this cocktail– the Corpse Reviver No. 2.  It is without a doubt one of my favorite summer drinks.  Radd first introduced it to me last year and it was love at first taste.  He had been out of town, walked into a cocktail bar, and asked the bartender to make something “interesting.”  This is what he got (along with the recipe) and it blew him away.  We’ve been making it ever since.

So what’s with the weird name?  Apparently it was an old hangover cure that would revive your corpse after a long night in the pub.  It was first listed in the Savoy Cocktail Handbook by Harry Craddock in 1930, so it has been around for awhile.

Corpse Reviver No. 2 | Relishing It

This cocktail basically tastes like jacked-up lemonade with a twist.  That twist being a hint of anise flavor from the absinthe rinse.  It’s subtle and oh-so-very intriguing!  It’s a perfect sipping cocktail when it’s hot outside and the sun is shining down.  If you make this– I’m almost certain you will love it.  Have a wonderful weekend, friends!  Cheers!

Corpse Reviver No. 2 | Relishing It

The Recipe: Corpse Reviver No. 2

(serves 1)

1 oz. gin

1 oz. Cointreau (or Triple Sec)

1 oz. Lillet blanc

1 oz. freshly-squeezed lemon juice

Absinthe rinse.

Combine and shake the gin, Cointreau, Lillet, and lemon juice over ice and let rest for a minute or so.  While the ingredients are resting, pour about a half teaspoon of absinthe into a well-chilled cocktail glass and roll the glass allowing the absinthe to coat the sides.  Discard the absinthe that remains in the glass.  Give the ingredients another shake and strain it into your absinthe-rinsed glass.  Serve with a lemon twist.

Thanks for visiting Relishing It!  See you next week.

Laurie

Read Full Post »

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

I try not to describe things as “the best” too often.  I’ve done it from time to time, but when I do I truly think the recipe deserves that title. This margarita?  It’s the best.  Full stop.  Ditch the store-bought margarita mix, because it doesn’t even come close.  And once you make this sublime cocktail, it’ll be the measuring stick against which you judge all others.  There, how’s that for a recommendation?

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

I’d been planning to make these margaritas for a gathering of some of our dearest friends this past weekend.  We’re a group that has been close since our early college days, but as is often the case, it’s just difficult to get everyone together as we’ve become adults.  It was fantastic being able to sit in the back yard sharing stories, drinking margaritas and eating tacos (more on that in another post), and watching all of our kids run around.  Summer at it’s finest.

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

Now to the margarita.  This one requires a little planning, but don’t let that scare you off– it’s easy to make.  What it doesn’t involve is a long list of strange or unpronounceable ingredients.  Lemon, lime, sugar, and a decent mid-price tequila.  The reason it tastes so damn good is due to the time you should let the flavors meld together in the refrigerator.  I did it for 24 hours (actually a bit more, to be honest).   The lemon, lime, and sugar really have a chance to become one– it takes on an entirely different citrus when you give it the time.  If you’re short on time, four hours will probably work.  Just remember the longer it sits, the better it will be.  I’m planning to keep some in my refrigerator throughout the week, so it’s at the ready when I fancy a good margarita.  Which means I’ll probably be having one every night.  Nothing wrong with living a little, right?  I also made those cocktail cherries that crown the drink– I’ll share that recipe soon, as well.

The Best Margarita | Relishing It

The Recipe:  The Best Margarita

(serves 4-6)

4 teaspoons lemon zest

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2-3 lemons)

4 teaspoons lime zest

1/2 cup fresh lime juice (from 3-4 limes)

1/4 cup super-fine sugar (or use granulated that has been blended in a food processor.  Super-fne sugar is needed so it dissolves adequately)

pinch of kosher salt

1 cup 100% Agave Tequila (make sure it’s a Reposado– a type that’s aged in oak barrels for between 2 months to a year)

1 cup Triple Sec

Note: We tripled this batch.  The juice mixture fit nicely into a quart jar and then a large glass pitcher when we combined the alcohol and served it.  As long as the ice is not combined directly into the pitcher, leftovers can be kept in the refrigerator and used when you want. 

Combine all of the ingredients into a pint jar, except the liquor.  Shake and refrigerate for at least 4-24 hours (or longer).   When ready to serve, strain the mixture into a serving pitcher (this will remove the zest) and add the liquor.  Stir.  Serve in a glass that has been prepared using lime around the edge and dipped into margarita salt.   Fill each glass with ice and pour the margarita mixture into it.  Add a cocktail cherry, if desired.  Cheers!

Recipe adapted from America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

 

Read Full Post »

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

Finally.  Warm weather is finally here in Minnesota!  I know parts of the country have been having ridiculous heat waves recently, but we’ve been waiting (not-so-very) patiently for the weather to get nice here.  Yesterday  it finally did, and it was glorious!  It’s remarkable to see the change in attitude and manners once decent weather shows up.  Everyone– and I mean everyone– is just so much happier and more pleasant.  It’ll be another story once the high heat and humidity eventually find their way here.

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

I did my best yesterday to blind people with my extremely white Minnesota legs.  Not that this is any different than later in the summer.  I basically vary between stark white and just very pale.  Years ago I wished I had more color, but now I’m fine with my lack of sun-induced color, so I’ll continue to lather on the sunscreen.

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

Where was I going with all of this?  Oh yeah… summer, heat, shorts….potato salad!  Grilling last night was a no-brainer, so I made a bowl of one of my favorite summer potato salads to kick off the season.  In this version, I’ve accompanied the potatoes with spring ramps, radishes, celery, and parsley.  Ramps are fabulous, but are around for such a short time, scallions replace them when they are no longer available.  A delicate dressing of lemon, olive oil, garlic, and anchovies is poured on the warm yellow potatoes to really saturate them with flavor.  The crunchy vegetables are added later, once the potatoes have cooled a bit, then the remaining dressing is added.  This potato salad gets better and better the longer it sits.  And it’s perfect for picnics since it doesn’t contain any dairy.  I hope you give it a try!

Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes | Relishing It

The Recipe: Spring Potato Salad with Ramps and Radishes

3 pounds yellow potatoes, cut into bite sized pieces

1 bunch radishes, chopped

1 bunch ramps or scallions, chopped

handful of fresh parsley, chopped

2-3 stalks of celery, chopped

For the Dressing:

2 garlic cloves, finely chopped

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

juice of 2 lemons (about 5 tablespoons)

3-4 small anchovies, smashed into a paste

1/2 cup good quality olive oil  (California Olive Ranch gets my vote)

salt and fresh cracked pepper

good crunchy sea salt to finish

Place a steamer in a large saucepan.  Add a bit of water to the bottom.  Add the potatoes and steam until potatoes are nearly done.  Turn off the burner and keep the cover on for an additional 10-15 minutes to ensure the potatoes are fully cooked.  This technique keeps the potatoes from being loaded with water, which sometimes happens when boiled, and from being over-cooked which can lead to mushiness.  Check them after 10 minutes, and if they’re tender, remove the lid.

Meanwhile, make the dressing.  In a medium bowl, add the garlic, anchovies, Dijon, lemon juice, and pinch of salt and pepper.  Whisk.  Then slowly add the olive oil, whisking the entire time.  Adjust seasonings, if necessary.  Remember that potatoes require a bit of salt to let their flavor shine through.  However, the anchovies will supply a lot of that saltiness, so I generally wait to make a final judgment about adding more salt until the potato salad has been refrigerated and the flavors have had a chance to meld together.

When the potatoes are done steaming, add them to a large bowl and pour about 2/3 of the dressing over them while they are hot.  Use a rubber spatula to gently fold the potatoes and dressing together.  Let sit until mostly cool, then add the vegetables and the remainder of the dressing.  Fold everything together, cover with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for a couple of hours.  When ready to serve, let it come to room temperature– the flavors are brighter when they are not completely cold.   Sprinkle with a crunchy sea salt before serving.  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

Read Full Post »

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing It

Spring is finally here in Minnesota!  Last week I celebrated “Spring” with my kids, who had a week-long break from school.  We didn’t travel anywhere, which was wonderful.  It was a week full of library trips, swimming, coffee shops, board games, and a general feeling of contentment.  We read a ton of books.  We slept in.  We stayed up far too late.  We played video games (yes, I let me kids play video games, and I love that they do). We enjoyed every minute of freedom, and I enjoyed every minute of being with them.  I try not to get overly personal in this space, instead opting to focus on food and all the wonderful things about it.  But, sometimes I feel the need to say how proud I am of my kids.  They have grown into such incredible little people.  They are kind.  They are hilarious.  They are brilliant– and grounded.  They are compassionate.  I love to be with them, and that’s a pretty great feeling.

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing it

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing It

Changing seasons always has me in a bit of flux when it comes to making food.  Some days are warmer than others.  Soup would probably still be fitting, but I don’t want anymore soup for awhile.  Finding inspiration this time of year, in this particular place, can be a bit challenging.  So I wait patiently– hoping that inspiration comes.  It will.  It always does.  Ideas will pour out of my head soon enough, especially when I see the first asparagus of the season.  Or smell the first ramps.  I won’t be able to stop dreaming of moral mushrooms when I eat them for the first time this Spring.  Inspiration will come.

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing It

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing It

But, in the meantime– I will go for bike rides and long walks with my kids.  We will get muddy and splash in the puddles fed by the last few melting piles of snow.  I will see green emerging everywhere.  And I will eat this Caesar salad.  Because no matter the season, Caesar salad always sounds delicious to me.  Purchased dressing doesn’t even come close to this homemade version.  As with most dressings, it’s a cinch to make.  It’s as easy as putting all the ingredients into a mini food processor and whizzing it together.  Serve it with chicken, if you like.  Make some homemade croutons (which are also a cinch), or opt for a dusting of toasted breadcrumbs, as I often do.  I make my dressing with a raw egg yolk– I love the consistency it gives the dressing.  I use good eggs from local farmers.  You should use good eggs, too.  It will reduce any risks associated with using raw eggs.  This dressing is bright and a little nutty from the parmesan.  The anchovies give it a wonderful umami flavor that is a telltale sign of a good Caesar dressing.  Don’t skip them, as an important element will be lost.  Whip up this dressing and enjoy it on a bed of crisp romaine.  For added flavor, brush the romaine with a bit of olive oil and toss it on the grill for a few minutes until it is slightly charred around the edges.  It adds a whole extra layer of flavor!  Trust me, you’ll love it.  I’ve got to fly– my daughter wants to go pick up trash around the neighborhood.  True story.

Homemade Caesar Dressing | Relishing It

The Recipe: Homemade Caesar Dressing

(makes enough for 2 salads)

2 garlic cloves, minced

6 small anchovies, minced

2-3 tablespoons grated parmigiano reggiano cheese

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice (from about 1/2 lemon)

1 egg yolk (free-range/organic)

1/4 cup good quality extra-virgin olive oil ( I prefer California Olive Ranch Olive Oil)

sea salt and cracked black pepper to taste

Place all of the ingredients, except the olive oil in a mini-food processor ( if you don’t have one, you may use a large bowl and a whisk.  Just be sure to mash the garlic and anchovies into a paste first.  Then, slowly whisk the olive oil into the other ingredients).  It’s best to wait to season this dressing with salt until the very end–the anchovies will provide much of the saltiness that is needed.  Pulse for a few times until the mixture is uniform and creamy.  With the lid on and the machine running, drizzle the olive oil through the small holes on the lid.  Be sure to scrape down the sides, as needed.  When it is creamy and completely incorporated, it is done.  Season with salt and pepper as needed.  Use immediately (this dressing does not have a long life because of the egg yolks, so use it the day it is made).  Enjoy!

Thanks for stopping by Relishing It!

Laurie

 

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: