Inside the beautiful commercial kitchen at COOKS, Samar and I are busy preparing for tonights cooking class.
This is a quick Bolognese sauce that would rival the depth and richness of a long-cooked version.
1 28-ounce can high-quality whole, peeled tomatoes in juice, preferably San Marzano or about 2 pounds freshly-picked tomatoes, skins removed, flesh and seeds separated, and the fresh juices extracted
1/4 pound bacon, diced
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 small yellow onion, diced not small pieces
1 large carrot, peeled and diced into small pieces
1 small fennel bulb, fronds removed and reserved, bulb quartered and diced into 1/4-inch pieces
1 dried chipotle pepper
1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley stems
4 fresh thyme sprigs
2 medium garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
1 pound ground pastured lamb
3/4 cup fresh rough chopped flat leaf parsley leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 pound fresh pasta, such as broad egg noodles, pappardelle, or fettuccine
METHOD OF PREPARATION
Coarsely chop the tomatoes and place them in a bowl with any accumulated juice. Set aside.
Saute the bacon in a large pot or Dutch oven over medium heat until the fat begins to render. Add 2 tablespoons of the oil to the pot. Add the onion, carrot, fennel, chipotle pepper, parsley stems, and thyme sprigs. Season with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and translucent, about 10 minutes. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 2 minutes.
Add the lamb and season with salt and pepper. Increase the heat to medium-high and cook, breaking up the meat with a fork, until it begins to brown, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes, along with any accumulated juice, and parsley leaves. Lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is thick, about 35 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove and discard the chipotle pepper and thyme sprigs.
When the Bolognese is almost done, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the pasta water. Return the pasta to the pot and toss with the remaining 1 tablespoon oil. Add half of the sauce and toss to coat well, adding more sauce as desired. If the sauce seems too dry, stir in the pasta water as needed. Garnish with some of the reserved fennel fronds and sprinkles of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Serve with Olive Oil and Sea Sale Crostini (found on page 242 in The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook).
Note: Allow the sauce to cool completely. Ladle bolognese into freezer-safe containers or heavy-duty freezer bags and label with date, then transfer to the freezer. The bolognese will last 3 to 4 months in the freezer.
Recipe from The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook (Skyhorse Publishing, Oct. 2017) by Tracey Medeiros.
It is always fun when I have an opportunity to teach a cooking class.
These pops are easy-to-make and perfect for celebrating the fourth of July!
HEIRLOOM MELON CHIA ICE POPS
This recipe for Heirloom Melons is (almost) as nourishing and healthful as it is delicious.
These easy-to-make frozen treats are healthy and delicious. The sweet flavor of the melon is a wonderful complement to the rich taste of the coconut milk. The chia seeds provide fiber and protein as well as an omega-3 boost. Stir the leftover coconut milk into your oatmeal or coffee.
Makes 10 (3- to 4-ounce) ice pops
1 (14-ounce) can unsweetened organic coconut milk
3 tablespoons orange blossom honey, divided, or to taste, depending on the sweetness of the melon
2 tablespoons chia seeds
1 ½ heaping teaspoons finely grated lime zest, or to taste
3 teaspoons freshly squeezed lime juice, divided, or to taste
3 ½ cups ripe melon chunks, such as Sugar Queen, butterscotch, Ogen or Ananas, seeds and rind removed
Whisk together the coconut milk, 1 ½ tablespoons honey, chia seeds, lime zest and 1½ teaspoons lime juice, in a medium bowl. Cover and place in the refrigerator until the seeds have plumped, about 2 hours, stirring occasionally.
Place the melon chunks, the remaining 1 ½ tablespoons honey and the remaining 1 ½ teaspoons lime juice in a food processor or blender and puree until smooth. Adjust seasonings with additional honey and lime zest, if desired. Note: You should have approximately 2 ¾ cups melon puree.
Carefully spoon 1 ½ tablespoons of the melon puree into the bottom of each popsicle mold. Gently tap each mold on the counter to level the puree. Freeze, without sticks, until the puree is set, about 15 minutes. Carefully spoon 1 heaping tablespoon of the coconut mixture on top of the melon layer. Again, gently tap each mold on the counter to level the coconut milk mixture. Carefully spoon 1 to 1 ½ tablespoons of the melon puree on top. Place the cover on top and insert the popsicle sticks into the center of each mold. Freeze until solid, at least 3 hours or up to overnight.
Note: It is unnecessary to freeze the coconut layer because it is thick enough to resist the weight of the melon puree. Depending on the sweetness of the melon, feel free to add more or less honey to taste.
HOMEMADE STRAWBERRY-LEMON FRUIT POPS
From The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook (Skyhorse Publishing, Oct. 2017) by Tracey Medeiros.
These pretty homemade fruit pops are fun to make! “This is one of the simplest and most popular pops we make for farmers’ markets. It is always refreshing and it consistently brings joy to our customers faces." – Adam Hausmann, owner, Adam's Berry Farm
Makes 10-12 fruit pops
Makes approximately 1 1/8 cups
3/4 cup organic cane sugar
3/4 cup water
4 cups fresh strawberries, hulled and coarsely chopped
3/4 cup simple syrup
4 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest (preferably from an unwaxed lemon)
6 strawberries, hulled and cut into thin slices, optional
To make the simple syrup: Pour the sugar and water into a small saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from stovetop and allow to cool completely.
To make the pops: Puree the strawberries in a blender until smooth. Add the simple syrup and lemon juice in a slow and steady stream. Add the lemon zest and pulse until combined. Arrange 4-5 strawberry slices, if using, inside 3-ounce ice pop molds. Carefully, pour the strawberry puree into each chamber up to 1/4-inch below the top of each mold. Cover and insert wooden sticks or spoons. Place them in the freezer and freeze until solid, at least 8 hours or overnight.
Thanksgiving dinner is one of the most anticipated meals of the year. This Green Mountain Sandwich with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette will transform your leftover turkey into a delicious, exciting meal.
The earthy caramelized onions and maple balsamic vinaigrette add a subtle sweetness to the sandwich. The peppery flavor of the arugula provides the perfect balance alongside the tart apple slices and roast turkey. This dressing makes more than you will need for the sandwiches. Use the leftovers as a marinade for chicken or as a dressing for local greens.
Green Mountain Sandwich with Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette
From The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook (Skyhorse Publishing, Oct 2017) by Tracey Medeiros.
Makes 4 sandwiches
Maple Balsamic Vinaigrette
Makes about 3 cups
2/3 cup high-quality balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup pure maple syrup
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard (equal parts grainy and smooth, combined)
1 1/4 cups sunflower oil, preferably non-GMO
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Makes about 1 cup
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1 pound yellow or white onions, halved and sliced into 1/8-inch-thick half-rounds
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Green Mountain Sandwich
4 slices of Vermont cheddar cheese
2 1/2 ounces thinly sliced roasted turkey, for each sandwich, homemade or store-bought*
1 Granny Smith apple, cored and cut into 1/8-inch slices
1 1/4 cups packed arugula
8 slices of bread, such as rye or multigrain, toasted
To make the dressing: Place the vinegar, maple syrup, and mustards in a blender and pulse until combined. While the machine is running, slowly add the oil until a creamy vinaigrette forms. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.
Note: If you are roasting the turkey yourself, caramelize the onions while the turkey is roasting in the oven.
To caramelize the onions: Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the onions and cook for 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Reduce the heat to low and continue to cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are soft and caramelized, about 60 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Remove the onions from the heat and set aside.
To assemble the sandwich: Evenly divide the cheese on 4 slices of bread; top with turkey, apple slices, caramelized onions, and arugula. Drizzle each with the maple balsamic vinaigrette to taste. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Top with the remaining bread slices. Serve with a pickle on the side, if desired.
Variation: Note: You will need to brine the turkey for 3 days before you intend to serve the sandwiches.
4 cups vegetable broth
1/2 cup kosher salt
1/2 cup organic cane sugar
1/4 lemon, cut into thin slices
1/2 tablespoon molasses
1 pound local antibiotic- and hormone-free turkey breast
To brine the turkey breast: Combine the vegetable broth, salt, sugar, lemon slices, and molasses in a medium stockpot and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and let cool on the countertop for 30 minutes, then refrigerate until the brine is cold, about 30 minutes. Place the turkey breast in the brine, cover, and refrigerate for 3 days, turning the meat halfway through brining. Remove the turkey breast from the brine and pat dry with paper towels, discarding the remaining brine. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Cook the meat until the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit, about 70 minutes. Allow the turkey to rest for 15 minutes, then thinly slice the meat, as needed, for sandwiches.
CLICK ON THE LINK BELOW TO WATCH TRACEY'S COOKING SEGMENT ON WCAX:
BRUSSELS SPROUTS WITH A CREAMY SRIRACHA DIPPING SAUCE
From The Vermont Non-GMO Cookbook (Skyhorse Publishing, October 2017).
This dipping sauce is smooth and creamy with a tangy heat and a hint of sweetness that pairs perfectly with the earthy Brussels sprouts.
Serves 4 as a side dish
1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved lengthwise
3 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 tablespoons virgin coconut oil, melted
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Creamy Sriracha Dipping Sauce
Makes about 1/2 cup
1/4 cup sour cream
1/4 cup mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon prepared horseradish
1/2 teaspoon sriracha sauce
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper or chili powder
To make the Brussels sprouts: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly oil a rimmed baking sheet and set aside.
In a medium bowl, combine the Brussels sprouts, garlic, and oil until well combined. Place the Brussels sprouts on the prepared baking sheet in a single layer, cut side down. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Bake in the oven, stirring occasionally, until crispy and golden brown, about 20 minutes. Adjust seasonings with salt and pepper to taste.
While the Brussels sprouts are roasting, make the dipping sauce: In a small bowl, stir together the sour cream, mayonnaise, horseradish, sriracha sauce, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper, until well combined. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Serve the Brussels sprouts at once with the creamy sriracha dipping sauce on the side.