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Rosemary Pork Tenderloin

May 18, 2015

This is a simple recipe for an oven-roasted pork tenderloin. It can be prepared in 5 minutes and done in about 45 minutes, so this recipe is a great staple for quick and easy dinners.

20150418 Rosemary PorkYou will need:

  • 1 to 1.5 lb pork tenderloin, trimmed of excess fat
  • 3 T fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 T Dijon mustard
  • 2 T apricot preserves
  • 1/2 t ground pepper
  • 1/4 t salt

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Lightly grease a 9×13 glass baking dish with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. In a small bowl, stir together the rosemary with the mustard, preserves, salt and pepper.
  3. Spread the rosemary-mustard mixture on the top and bottom of the pork.
  4. Place the pork in the prepared pan.
  5. Roast for 45 minutes, or until the center of the thickest part reaches 145 degrees.
  6. Allow to cool at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving.
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Lemon Dijon Turkey Breast

May 13, 2015

D and I made this for dinner on a whim after spotting some turkey breasts at a local grocery store. We paired them with red onion, mustard, lemon and capers for a delicious dinner.

You will need:

  • 2 lb turkey breast, cut into 6 pieces
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/2 t ground pepper
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1 T butter
  • 1/2 small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 c dry white wine
  • 1/4 c Dijon mustard
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1 T capers, chopped

20150406 Dijon Turkey 02Then you will…

  1. Lightly pound the turkey pieces with a meat tenderizer/mallet until they are 3/4-inch thick.
  2. Pat dry with paper towels.
  3. Season with the salt and pepper on both sides.
  4. In a large nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
  5. Add the turkey and cook 3 minutes per side, until golden and cooked through. Cook in batches if needed.
  6. Remove the turkey and place on a plate. Cover it loosely with tinfoil.
  7. Melt the butter in the same skillet over medium heat.
  8. Add the onion and allow to saute 3-5 minutes, until they start to soften.
  9. Add the wine and bring to a boil, scraping up any browned bits from the bottom of the pan.
  10. Stir in the mustard, lemon zest, lemon juice and capers.
  11. Allow to reduce by at least half.
  12. Top the turkey with the sauce and serve hot!
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Florentine Cauliflower Steaks

May 7, 2015

This is a yummy dish that can either serve as a vegetarian main course or a robust side dish. It is full of spinach and cheese, and the roasted cauliflower has a nutty flavor that is extra delicious.

You will need:

  • 1 large head of cauliflower
  • 2 T olive oil
  • 1/4 t salt
  • 1/4 t pepper
  • 2 T butter
  • 2 T flour
  • 1 c milk
  • 2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 1/2 c shredded Parmesan cheese
  • 5 oz fresh baby spinach, finely chopped
  • 1/4 c panko breadcrumbs

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 475 degrees. Lightly grease a baking sheet with sides.
  2. Cut the cauliflower in half (top to bottom of stem). Remove extra leave but leave the core and top part of the stem.
  3. Cut the cauliflower into 2-inch thick slices.
  4. Place the cauliflower on baking sheet. Drizzle with the olive oil and season with the salt and pepper.
  5. Roast the cauliflower for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and flip the cauliflower over.
  6. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a medium saucepan on medium-low heat.
  7. Whisk in the flour and cook for 2 minutes.
  8. Slowly whisk in the milk until it is smoothly incorporated into the butter-flour mixture (roux).
  9. Whisk in the garlic.
  10. Allow the mixture to thicken, whisking regularly.
  11. Whisk in the Parmesan until melted and smooth.
  12. Remove from heat and stir in the spinach.
  13. Roast the cauliflower for another 10 minutes. It should be tender enough to pierce with a fork and a golden brown along the edges.
  14. Top the cauliflower with the cheese sauce.
  15. Sprinkle with the panko breadcrumbs.
  16. Return the cauliflower to the oven and bake until the crumbs are golden, about another 5 minutes.

20150406 Florentine Cauliflower

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Santiago Almond Cake

May 3, 2015
I love almonds. Whether they are in the form of marzipan or raw, they are one of my favorite treats. Torta de Santiago is a historically important cake from Spain. It means the “cake of Saint James” and has been served since the Middle Ages.
You will need:

  • 2 2/3 c finely ground almond meal from blanched almonds
  • 6 eggs, separated
  • 1 1/4 c sugar
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 1 lemon, zested
  • 1/4 t almond extract
  • Powdered sugar for dusting

20150410 Santiago Cake

Then you will…

  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Grease a 9-inch springform pan.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the egg yolks with the sugar until smooth and a pale yellow.
  3. Beat in the zests and almond extract.
  4. Stir in the almond meal and mix well. The mixture will be rather thick.
  5. In a medium mixing bowl, whip the egg whites until you have stiff peaks.
  6. Fold the eggs whites into the almond mixture in thirds.
  7. Spread the batter in the prepared pan.
  8. Bake for 35 to 45 minutes, or until golden and set in the middle.
  9. Allow to cool in the pan for 20 minutes. Remove the sides and allow to cool completely.
  10. Remove from the pan and set on a serving dish.
  11. Dust the cake with a little powdered sugar before serving.
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Patatas Bravas

April 26, 2015

Patatas Bravas is a common bar snack in Spain. It is a dish that mixes crispy potatoes with a spicy tomato sauce. It’s a great snack or side dish!

You will need:

  • 2 lb red-skinned potatoes, quartered into bite-sized pieces
  • Enough boiling water to cover potatoes
  • 4 T olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1 t garlic powder
  • 1 small yellow onion, diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/2 t paprika
  • 1/4 – 1/2 t cayenne pepper, as much as you want for spice
  • 1 can (14.5 oz) crushed tomatoes
  • 4 T grated Parmesan (optional)

Then you will…

  1. Soak the potato pieces in the boiling water for 15 minutes.
  2. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  3. Drain and dry the potatoes.
  4. In a medium bowl, mix together 3 tablespoons of the olive oil with the salt and garlic powder. Toss the potatoes in this seasoned mix.
  5. Spread the potatoes on a baking sheet with sides and roast 25-30 minutes until cooked through and golden.
  6. Meanwhile heat the remaining tablespoon of olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium heat.
  7. Add the onion and garlic to the skillet. Cook over medium-low heat until the onions are softened, about 10 minutes.
  8. Stir in the paprika and cayenne.
  9. Mix in the crushed tomatoes and bring to a simmer.
  10. Allow to simmer about 15 minutes to slightly reduce. Add additional seasoning to taste.
  11. Transfer potatoes to a serving bowl.
  12. Top with the spicy tomato sauce and the Parmesan (if desired).

20150410 Patatas

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Gambas al Ajillo (Garlic Shrimp)

April 20, 2015

20150410 Gambas

Gambas al Ajillo is a delicious Spanish dish, especially if you like seafood and garlic. There are a few steps here that can be done in advance, like preparing the seasoned olive oil. This will keep the day-of cooking down to a minimum.

You will need:

  • 10 cloves garlic, peeled
  • 1 lb large shrimp, peeled with shells reserved
  • 1/2 c olive oil, divided
  • 1/2 t salt
  • 1/2 t paprika
  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced
  • 1/4 t red pepper flakes
  • 1 t sherry vinegar

Then you will…

  1. Mince 4 cloves of the garlic.
  2. In a medium mixing bowl, mix together 3 tablespoons of olive oil with the minced garlic, salt, paprika and lemon zest.
  3. Toss the shrimp with the olive oil seasoning mixture. Set aside.
  4. Crush 4 cloves of the garlic.
  5. In a large skillet, heat the remaining olive oil over low heat.
  6. Add the crushed garlic with the shrimp shells and red pepper flakes.
  7. Cook, stirring regularly, for about 10 minutes. You want to keep the oil at a gentle simmer.
  8. Strain the hot oil through a fine sieve to remove the shrimp shells and cooked garlic. (You can throw away the used shells and garlic).
  9. Thinly slice the remaining two cloves of garlic.
  10. Return the hot oil to the skillet on medium heat.
  11. Add the sliced garlic to the skillet and sauté until just starting to brown.
  12. Add the shrimp, lemon juice and sherry vinegar.
  13. Sauté for 2 minutes.
  14. Season the shrimp to taste and serve with crusty bread to sop up the sauce.
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Mock Sangria

April 15, 2015

My girlfriends and I recently started hosting “wine down Fridays,” where we go to one of our houses for snacks and drinks one Friday a month. The idea was to make sure we have time to catch up in an environment where we can relax and have fun. I hosted a Spain-inspired evening, and I wanted to have something to drink that was not wine. Check out this mock sangria! It’s quite refreshing and easy to put together.

20150410 Sangria 02

You will need:

  • 2 c boiling water
  • 2 Early Grey tea bags
  • 3 cinnamon sticks
  • 2 pods of star anise
  • 1/3 c honey (optional)
  • 2 c pomegranate juice
  • 1/2 c orange juice
  • A mix of thinly sliced fruits (I used a blood orange, lemon, lime and green apple)
  • 2 c soda or seltzer water

Then you will…

  1. In a small mix bowl or a large measuring cup, pour the boiling water over the tea bags.
  2. Add the cinnamon and star anise to the tea mixture and allow to steep for 5 minutes.
  3. Remove the tea bags.
  4. If using, mix in the honey until it is dissolved in the tea.
  5. Pour the tea into a large pitcher.
  6. Add the juice(s) and your sliced fruit.
  7. Refrigerate overnight (if you prepare the day of an event, allow to sit for as long as possible).
  8. Add the soda water just before serving.

p.s. You can always substitute a dry sparkling wine for the soda water if you decide you do not want a mocktail.

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