Hello my fine foodie friends! Today’s Food Star Friday post is courtesy of Kelsey Nixon from Kelsey’s Essentials. I know she isn’t a “big” food star, but I have been watching a lot of the new shows lately trying to get a feel for the up and comers. This episode of her show was all about sauces and, as you know, a sauce can make or break a recipe. So I thought I would share the link for the episode as well as one of her recipes. The episode was entitled “Sauces” and the recipe, well as you can see I made some very yummy roasted asparagus with a Beurre Blanc sauce.
I am an asparagus fanatic! Hands down it is my favorite veggie with the artichoke coming in a close second. I have made asparagus just about every way possible I think, but am always open to new ways. A certain pizza I just found on Pintrest comes to mind so stay tuned for that one too!
In the past I have tried many variations of this dish. Asparagus wrapped in bacon, asparagus wrapped in prosciutto, asparagus wrapped in prosciutto with a little bit of Swiss cheese tucked under the prosciutto wrap, etc. But when I saw one of my favorite side dishes made with a sauce I had never tried I knew it was meant to happen.
The sauce takes a little bit of time but is oh so worth it! Actually it is not as much time as attention. If you let it get to hot you will break the sauce. But like I said this sauce is just, well perfect! We even drizzled it over our baked potatoes and steaks!!
Remove the woody ends of the asparagus spears trimming the spears to the same length.
Bundle 3 asparagus stalks together and wrap each grouping with one slice of prosciutto, leaving the tips exposed. Drizzle the bundles with olive oil.
Roast the bundles for 10 minutes, or until the asparagus ends and the prosciutto slices are crisp.
Drizzle each prosciutto-wrapped asparagus bundle with the prepared beurre blanc and serve.
Bring the shallots, vinegar, and wine to a boil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan until the liquid is reduced to 2 tablespoons, about 5 minutes.
Add the cream, salt, and pepper and bring to a boil for 1 minute. Reduce the heat to low and whisk in a few tablespoons butter. Continue to whisk and add a few pieces at a time of the remaining butter. Wait until each addition is incorporated before adding more butter. The sauce should remain warm, but never hot or the sauce will break.
Remove the sauce from the heat and season with salt, and pepper, to taste. If desired, strain the sauce through a sieve to remove the shallot. Discard the shallot. Serve the sauce immediately.
Hello my dear friends! I am preparing for a move soon (and I absolutely hate moving) so my cooking duties have been replaced somewhat by dinners out or, I am sad to admit, fast food. On the positive side of things, when I do get a chance to cook a meal I am sooooo excited!! Not that I wasn’t excited when I was cooking everyday, but I miss it and appreciate it much more than I did.
Last night I made Beef and Asparagus Curry from a recipe I found in Everyday Food. I love asparagus and was so excited to find a recipe that featured it. I am not a big red meat lover but Kevin is, so I figured this would be a “best of both worlds” recipe. The recipe was a good one but I would have done a few things different. First of all I think this would be a fantastic recipe for chicken too. With that said I wil tell you the things I will do differently with beef.
The recipe calls for you to cook the beef in the broth at the very end of the cooking process. The next time I make this I will season the beef with salt and pepper and then sear it in the wok first (just briefly) to lock in the flavor. Then remove it from the wok/skillet and reserve it on a plate covered with foil to return to the finished meal just long enough to warm the beef back up, at the most 1 minute would be required. I also will add more curry paste than it asks for. In a chicken curry I make I add the entire jar of the red curry paste (approx 1/2 cup) this called for 1/4 cup and I think it needed a bit more zing. Another thing that I think would add another layer of flavor would be to toss the finished rice noodles with a small (and I mean very small) amount of sesame oil, or cook the noodles to al dente and toss them in the curry for a bit to finish the cook process and allow them to soak up more of the curry flavor.
Ok with that said, this is an enjoyable meal, it is just that I like to tinker with recipes to try and maximize the flavors. I would love for you to give this a try, either the original recipe or my variation, and let me know what you think.
WOW I am finally back! I haven’t been sick like I was in forever!! I realized I haven’t posted anything in a week. You KNOW a food blogger is sick when they don’t even want to cook! My poor family had to deal with leftovers and take out for over a week, I felt so bad.
Now that I am back I wanted to get more into my budget meals. I have been on the look out for recipes and ideas to provide for you since it was requested so much. I mean everyone loves to eat good food but not spend a fortune for it, right? It can be kind of hard to keep recipes down to $10 for a 4 person meal, but I am learning to buy things on sale and then work with them rather than chose recipes or ideas and then buying whatever I need at that time.
I had been looking through my Everyday Food magazine and found some recipes that sounded really good. When I went to the store it was wonderful to find so many of the ingredients on sale. I used asparagus in this meal because it was on sale for $1.99 a pound (Woohooooo) but you could easily use green beans or broccoli instead if your store doesn’t have asparagus on sale and you want to keep the cost down to $10.
So I have given my marathon of Mexican food recipes a rest but took a trip back to my soup obsession. Truthfully I had not been planning on making any soup. The weather here has been pleasantly mild with ZERO rain (What no rain in Washington???), so I wasn’t craving soup at all. Then I walked into the grocery store and saw a beautiful sight. Bundles of asparagus. Not the big thick ones that have been the norm, but nice thin tender ones. I was such a happy camper!! Asparagus is, hands down, my favorite vegetable, and the majority of the household feels the same. What was even better was that it was on SALE. Yessssssssssss!!! I grabbed two and finished up my shopping.
Once I got my little green bundles of joy home I started thinking about what I wanted to do with them. I didn’t want to use them as a side because I was so happy to find them I didn’t want them to take a back seat to anything. I thought about working them into a chicken main dish I have been working on but then it hit me….how do I let those babies shine? Put them center stage! BING the light bulb goes off in my head…..SOUP? Yes!!! I have made many soups but never an asparagus soup. I have no idea why since it IS my favorite veggie.
I was also planning on making grilled ham and Swiss cheese sandwiches to go along with this soup. Sounds yummy right? Well it WOULD have been but the kids ate all but three pieces of the ham so I had to scratch that. It turned out fine though. This soup was such a star I didn’t want anything else!!
I also got to use my new immersion blender with this recipe so that was an extra bonus. Don’t worry, if you don’t have an immersion blender a regular blender works just as well. This picture doesn’t show the green of the soup very well. I sooooo need a new camera!!!
- 1/2 stick unsalted butter
- 1 onion, chopped, (about 1/2 cup)
- 2 large cloves garlic, minced
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 pounds asparagus, ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
- 1 cup dry white wine
- 6 cups chicken stock
- 1 pint fat free sour cream, room temperature
- Cayenne pepper for garnish (optional)
OK, I actually made this on the 14th. It was my daughters birthday and as usual I asked her what she wanted for her birthday dinner. That is the routine with my kids, and has been for years. She surprised me by telling me that whatever I wanted to cook was fine with her. She even told me to try the veal recipe if I wanted. I was shocked! She was really kinda nervous about trying veal. Like I said she is my Miss Picky. But I pointed out to her that she likes lamb so she agreed to try veal.
The first thing that surprised me when I started prepping to cook the recipe was, when I removed the the veal scallopine I bought from it’s packaging it was in thin strips. I have never cooked veal scallopine before, but I was expecting something more along the line of thin steak shaped pieces of meat, or rounds. That was just odd to me, but I kept on prepping. I was really surprised at how easy this was to make. The name makes it sound so, well, complicated I guess. Fancy name = lots of work, right? Nope, not true. Once I started cooking my biggest fear was overcooking the meat and making it tough but I cooked it just as is says in the recipe and it was perfect.
I followed the recipe to the letter, like a good girl, and everything came out just as it was supposed to. I wasn’t sure how to place it on the plate so I did the best I could with Rachael’s instruction. Hopefully I was right. You can let me know how the picture looks.
As for the reviews, Jessi disliked it immediately. I think that could have been mostly in her head. She got herself psyched up that it she wouldn’t like it, I am not sure. Kevin and I were both on the fence with it. I liked the veal, but wasn’t jumping up and down about it. Kevin said he didn’t like it. He did love the sauce with the avocados and asparagus though. I kind of thought this was a weird combo when I was making it, but really when you eat it all together it really was good. I am thinking about playing around with this sauce and the avocados and some other meats.
If you like veal you will love this recipe. Rachael says “this dish is one buttery, delicious, edible ode to spring” and it really was very buttery. Like I said, I liked it but just that, liked it, wasn’t head over heals in love with it.
1 pound very thin asparagus tips
2 ripe Haas avocados
EVOO for drizzling, plus 2 tablespoons
1 1/4 pounds veal scallopine
Coarse black pepper
1 tablespoon all purpose flour, plus more for dredging
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 dry white wine
1 cup chicken stock
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/3 cup cream or half and half
3 tablespoons chopped fresh chives
In a large saucepan, bring 1 inch of water to a boil. Salt the water. Add a couple of curls of rind from the lemon and the asparagus tips. Cook the tips for 3 minutes, then drain and reserve.
Cut into and around the pits of the avocados. Scoop the flesh from the avocados, and slice. Dress the slices with a little lemon juice, a drizzle of EVOO, and a pinch of salt, reserve.
Preheat your largest skillet over medium heat. Season the veal with salt and pepper on both sides. Dredge the scallopine in a little flour. Add the two tablespoons of the EVOO and the two tablespoons of the butter to the hot skillet. WHen the butter melts into the oil, add the veal and cook for 2 minutes on each side, or until evenly light golden in color. Place the veal on a platter under a loose tent of foil.
Add the remaining tablespoon of butter and the tablespoon of flour to the skillet. Cook for 1 minute, then whisk in the wine and scrape up the pans drippings. Whisk the stock into the wine and add the thyme, salt, pepper, and mustard. Stir in the cream, then remove from the heat.
Arrange the asparagus and sliced avocados over the veal and pour a line of sauce over the top. Garnish the dinner plates or platter with chopped chives and serve.
Monday I had a Dr’s appointment and I realized I had gotten out of the house without my shopping list so I could pick up the ingredients for my next Rachael recipe for you all. Even though the store I needed to go to was all the way on the other side of town, and my house is somewhat in the middle, I just didn’t feel like driving back home. So off to the store I go with an idea in the back of my little brain.
I have this free app on my iPhone that is for Food Network. I got my shopping cart, whipped out my phone, and started searching. The planets must have aligned or it was fate or whatever you want to call it, but I went to the recipe section and clicked on the “Main Dish” tab up pops a few recipes. I had been really wanting to cook fish so I thought wellllll maybe I will just grab a fish recipe now and then come back out tomorrow to get the things I need to make a Rachael recipe. The first fish recipe that came up was this one and it sounded really good. Although I had never cooked Mahi Mahi I was feeling adventurous and like I said I really wanted fish. I clicked on the recipe and SURPRISE it was a Rachael Ray recipe! YAY I did the happy dance. People looked at me strange but since I was close to the pharmacy the must have figured “Aww poor girl needs her meds”.
The next thing that happened that made me know this was meant to be was when I got to the fish counter and asked for Mahi Mahi. I couldn’t see any and was beginning to feel bummed that I would have to substitute another fish or look for another recipe. WALA the fish girl pulls out 5 fillets DING DING DING I needed exactly 5 fillets! OK so maybe I get excited about strange things but this had me very very happy. She wrapped up my little beauties and, since I had already picked up everything else, I made my mad dash for the checkout and scooted home with my treasures.
Once I got home and began getting things ready to go a bit of panic set in. Mahi Mahi is a firm white fish. I could tell by the feel of it that it would be very dry if I over cooked it. If you have ever had over cooked Swordfish you will know what my fear was. But I told myself that I have gotten very good at cooking fish by sight and knew I just needed to keep an eye on it.
Kevin helped me get all the veggies prepped and I got the fish in the marinade. I didn’t heat the pan as quickly as she said to because it said to preheat it before the fish was even in the marinade. So I waited and preheated it as the fish was ready to come out.
There is a lot of ginger in the recipe and I was worried that Kevin wouldn’t like it because he really dislikes ginger. When we go for sushi I like to torment him by eating the pickled ginger and then trying to get him to kiss me. I am bad, I know.
I have to say that this recipe rated, out of the 5 people that ate it, well lets see, Jessi gave me a two thumbs up and a toe up, she said it would have been 2 toes up but she was sitting on her other leg. Seth barely made a positive ID check on his, Kevin’s son Dylan was all smiles, and Kevin said he loved the orange with it even though he had thought he wouldn’t. Everyone agreed that this one was a keeper and we wanted to have it again.
So I think that pretty much sums it all up. I hope you enjoy it as much as we did!!
Last night I got a wild hair to just make appetizers for dinner. I had mentioned the things I wanted to make to Kevin and he agreed they sounded good and he was looking forward to our “party” menu. We don’t entertain much, but I would like to learn more than just your basic “nibbles”. I like to be different, what can I say. I also seem to like to frustrate myself and Kevin. The food last night was good but somehow we made it waaaaaaaaay more work I think than it should have been!
The funny thing was I pulled my same old “boo boo” the first time I wanted to make this recipe. I didn’t check the TOTAL time and just looked at the cook/prep time (someday I will learn). When I pulled everything out to make it I FINALLY read the whole thing and saw 24 hours inactive….WHAT…..I read it closer……yup…ggrrrrrrrr you have to soak the asparagus in buttermilk for 12 to 24 hours. Back in the fridge they went in their little buttermilk bath and I was left to scramble around to rearrange my menu.
Now, the asparagus has marinated in the buttermilk long enough and I get all of my ingredients out for the meal. I made Mini Beef Wellingtons (that recipe will be posted soon) and the Beer-Battered Asparagus. Between the two recipes it should have taken about an hour if you go by the times listed on the recipes….HA….ummm 2 hours later we were sitting down to eat. Kevin was mumbling as I prepared all of this because I used a ton of dishes while I cooked too (when he isn’t my sous chef he is the dishwasher). But he helped me with some of the prep and once things got going they were OK.
Now, our opinion on this recipe? It was interesting, definitely different, the aoili was so yummy. I had a hard time getting the batter to stay on the asparagus so we had a few “naked” fried asparagus spears. So in my mind, and Kevin agrees, it is tasty and if you can figure out the batter issue it would be great. I am stubborn, I will figure this out!
This one of those recipes that comes to mind on the fly when you have veggies in the fridge and need something to do with them. Last night I was making a meal for my Food Star Friday segment and had the recipes all picked out. When when WHEN will I learn to read ahead? I mean I go over the recipe to check ingredients but I am soooo bad about not reading the recipe thoroughly until the night I am making it. Well it bit me in the butt this time. I was going to make deep fried asparagus but when it came time to prep everything for the meal i look down and read “Soak asparagus in buttermilk for 12 to 24 hours” oh cr@p what am I going to do now?
My answer was to hit the fridge and pull out all of the veggies I had. I lined them up on the counter and looked them over. I probably looked like a drill instructor making sure his troops were staying in line. I then walked down the line and “shopped” for the items I thought would go well together. Satisfied with my choices I put the rest of the veggies back in the fridge with a promise that I would use them soon.
Once I made my choices I just knew they would be awesome together. I just hoped Kevin would feel the same. Into the oven they went and 10 minutes later I pulled out the yummy smelling goodness that once were random ingredients. WOW I was a happy camper. Kevin came in and the first thing he said was “What smells so good?” yesssssssss I love hearing that! And I am happy to say it tasted as good as it smelled.