Friday, August 17, 2018

Clean the Refrigerator Pasta Salad - Weekend Recipe

I call this Clean the Refrigerator Pasta Salad because you can put anything you have in the fridge into it.  Use whatever you have gotten at the farmers market or harvested from the garden to craft this tasty garden delight.



Clean the Refrigerator Pasta Salad

1 box penne or ziti (1 pound)
1/2 cup to 3/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup herbal vinegar (Chive blossom, tarragon, basil or other flavor)
Salt and pepper, to taste
Assorted fruits and vegetables and cheese, chopped

My suggestion – (But you can use anything you enjoy!)
      1 chopped scallion
      1 stalk celery
      1 sliced cucumber
      1 red onion, diced
      1 red pepper, diced
      1 carrot, cut fine
      a dozen cherry tomatoes, sliced in half
      1 small zucchini quartered and sliced (skin on)
      Fruit like a nectarine or a peach cut in 8ths or separated into sections
      Cheese like shredded mozzarella or cheddar

1/4 cup to 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh dill

Directions:

Bring a large pot of water to a boil; season aggressively with salt. Drop in your pasta and cook for the amount of time specified on the side of the box. In the last 30 seconds or so, start tasting the pasta. If it’s totally cooked through but still somewhat firm, it’s ready (el dente). Strain into a colander and allow to cool. With a whisk, combine the yogurt, olive oil, balsamic and salt and pepper to taste. Thin with warm water to thin if needed. Once the pasta is cool. When the pasta has cooled for a few minutes in the colander but is still warm, shake out all the water and add the pasta to the bowl. Pour in some of the dressing and stir it all around, adding enough to coat the pasta and to make it flavorful. Use more dressing than you think you need because that dressing will also dress the vegetables. Now add all those chopped vegetables.  Stir those in and then add the herbs.  Chill and serve.


To find any recipe featured this month - use the search box and type: GardAug

To find any theme recipe from this year type: recipe2018



For 2018 the monthly recipe themes will be:

   January - Chicken Soup (ChickJan)

   February - Beef Stew (StewFeb)

   March - Jambalaya (JambMar)

   May - Ham and Shrimp Dishes (ShrHamMay)

   June - Bread recipes (BreadJun)

   July - Grilling (GrillJul)

   August- Garden Delights GardAug

   September - Salsa, Corn and Jelly 

   October - Squash Dishes 

   November - Pumpkin Recipes 

   December - Herbal Cocktails 


Monday, August 13, 2018

Stuffed Fried Squash Blossoms - Meatless Monday

This time of year the compost bin is covered with volunteer squash plants.  They never grow true to seed, so I don’t do anything more with them than remove the squash blossoms and make them into a fried delicacy. Using herbs and a light sautéing touch you too can create fried stuffed squash blossoms.




Stuffed and Fried Squash Blossoms (serves 2-4)
1 dozen squash blossoms
4 ounces of cream cheese, goat cheese, ricotta, or any favorite soft cheese
1 to 2 Tbls chopped fresh herbs  - parsley, oregano and sage is a good combo 

    or 1/2 teaspoon each, dried.
1/4 cup of oil - just enough to cover the bottom of your frying pan







Frying Batter 
1/4 cup of flour
1/4 cup of corn starch - this makes a lighter coating, but you can substitute for an equal amount of flour.
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup of beer - okay to use bubbly water, like soda or sparkling.
1 egg
Salt and pepper to taste.

Directions
Allow cheese to reach room temperature. Chop herbs and mix into softened cheese.  Cut off long stems of squash blossoms, but stop at green base. Be careful not to clip a hole in the bottom - you don't want melting cheese to leak out too much. Stuff each blossom with about a teaspoon of cheese mixture, depending on the size of each squash blossom.

Combine the batter ingredients in a shallow bowl.  It should be thinner than pancake batter. You are going for a light coating, it can be on the thin side. It's all about tasting the delicate blossoms. Roll the filled blossoms in the batter, coating all sides.  This coating will help hold in the melting cheese/herb stuffing.

Add vegetable oil to sauté pan or pot, over medium/low heat. Test heated oil in pan with a drop of batter -- it should bubble and fry.  The oil is then ready to fry and you can begin. Pick up coated blossom and let excess batter drain off; then add each Stuffed Squash Blossom into pan as you coat them. 

Turn over each Stuffed Squash Blossom when edges just start to lightly brown -- you don't want a dark "Fried Chicken" brown, more of a "Japanese Tempura" light color. Be careful as blossoms may sputter and splash some grease, because of the melting cheese -- that is why pan heat is medium/low.

Drain on paper towels or a metal rack. Be careful of the first bite -- it will be deliciously melting hot! 


To find any recipe featured this month - use the search box and type: GrillJul

To find any theme recipe from this year type: recipe2018



For 2018 the monthly recipe themes will be:

   January - Chicken Soup (ChickJan)

   February - Beef Stew (StewFeb)

   March - Jambalaya (JambMar)

   May - Ham and Shrimp Dishes (ShrHamMay)

   June - Bread recipes (BreadJun)

   July - Grilling (GrillJul)

   August- Garden Delights GardAug

   September - Salsa, Corn and Jelly 

   October - Squash Dishes 

   November - Pumpkin Recipes 

   December - Herbal Cocktails 

Saturday, August 11, 2018

Grilled Pizza with Pesto & Feta - Weekend Recipe

I have a great simple summer grill-out recipe, perfect for a light appetizer or to serve as an entrée. No baking required!

Grilled Pizza With Pesto and Feta

Prepared pizza dough
Pesto (make your own with this recipe; or use BYP Pesto Blend)
garden fresh tomatoes, sliced
Peppers, diced or sliced
Feta cheese

Directions:
Place pizza dough on grill and grill both sides for 3 minutes. Spread with a layer of pesto and top with feta cheese and vegetables. Grill for 3 minutes more.

Optional: Serve with torn basil leaves.


To find any recipe featured this month - use the search box and type: GardAug

To find any theme recipe from this year type: recipe2018



For 2018 the monthly recipe themes will be:

   January - Chicken Soup (ChickJan)

   February - Beef Stew (StewFeb)

   March - Jambalaya (JambMar)

   May - Ham and Shrimp Dishes (ShrHamMay)

   June - Bread recipes (BreadJun)

   July - Grilling (GrillJul)

   August- Garden Delights GardAug

   September - Salsa, Corn and Jelly 

   October - Squash Dishes 

   November - Pumpkin Recipes 

   December - Herbal Cocktails 



Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Three Herbs to Cool down your over-heated self - Herbs of the Week


There are herbs (of course there are herbs) to help you get through the long, sticky days of August with your cool head intact.

1. Sage (Salvia officinalis):



Sage is a mint family member. That may sound surprising, but actually most herbs are, in some way, connected to this very large plant family. Here’s the crazy thing about sage: as a hot tea, it induces sweating. As a cold tea, though, it eases sweating. Try both hot and cold and see what your body likes. We make a rose iced tea with sage and most people were surprised we included it until they enjoyed the effects.

Sage is also good for the nervous system when it’s been aggravated by heat — you know, all those hot tempers that flare up in August? Other heat conditions can arise, of course, aside from summer heat. Menopause is one good example. Sage is really wonderful for this transition, easing the heat and dryness in the body. Try a cool tea laced with honey (which, as a demulcent, draws moisture to the body) to ease any discomfort.

2. Elder (Sambucus nigra, Sambucus canadensis):



You may be familiar with the elderberry’s use as a cold/flu/cough remedy, but the flowers are also used herbally, especially when trying to reduce heat. Elder is a cooling, drying herb, especially when it’s the dried flowers used in an infusion or tincture.

The reason elder is so good with colds, the flu, and heat in general can be attributed to its diaphoretic effect, which means the herb allows fluid to move easily in the body, opening pores and cleaning everything out. Elder flower tisane or tincture made from dried flowers is especially effective if you suffer from habitually dry, irritated, or flushed skin. Elder improves circulation throughout the body, opening the lungs, blood vessels, capillaries, kidneys, skin — anything that moves fluid along.

There are no dangers or contraindications associated with elder flowers, so brew away.  Elderflowers turn into elderberries this time of year.  Be careful as overconsumption of elderberries can potentially cause digestive upset, but this usually isn’t much of a danger if they are dried or cooked first. Never use the bark internally, or any raw berries or leaves.

3. Yarrow (Achillea millefolium):


Yarrow is one of my absolute favorite herbs, perhaps because it's one of the true traditional medicinal herbs of the New World.  Native Americans knew its worth and shared it with us.  The plant has a long, well-documented history. It grows almost everywhere, which makes it a truly local food.  I just realized I have never done an herb of the week just on Yarrow!  (I will fix that soon!)

Yarrow regulates the fluids in the body, cooling or heating as needed by moving blood toward, or away, from the skin’s surface. This makes it a good herb for my Rosacea which might contribute to it being a favorite of mine.  I also love the bold yellow color and the fact that dried it keeps that color and shape making using it in winter arrangements fun and interesting.

To take yarrow, brew up a warm cup of tea to open the pores of the skin and to release heat; a cold brew will stimulate digestion and the kidneys, relieving fluid retention. You can also use yarrow topically on wounds and bruises — another common summer occurrence.

NOTE: It’s best to avoid yarrow while pregnant. Also, it is possible to have a yarrow allergy, so if you suffer from a ragweed allergy, start with small doses and see how you feel. It's best to avoid this herb if you’re on anticoagulants or suffer from bradycardia.

No matter how you choose to beat the heat this summer, herbs are a fantastic addition to your summer wellness routine. Not a fan of iced tea? Brew up and cool a sage tisane (tea) and mix it with some lemonade. Trust me: it’s fantastic. Any of these herbs can be seamlessly combined in any number of summer drinks, smoothies, or sodas. And remember, when you’re using herbs as remedies, it's best to let them steep 5-10 minutes and use 2-3 tsp per 8 ounces of water (although you can adjust either of these recommendations to your personal taste).

Enjoy the rest of your summer with enjoyment and a cool head.

Tuesday, August 7, 2018

Pineapple Mint Ice

Yesterday we shared a Basil-Lime Sorbet recipe.  Today I have a Pineapple Mint Ice which is simpler to make with just a blender and a pan to freeze the ice.



Pineapple Mint Ice
1 cup cubed fresh pineapple (or 1-8.25 oz. can unsweetened chunks)



1/4 cup honey

1/2 cup grapefruit juice
15 to 20 fresh pineapple or apple mint leaves
1/2 tsp grated fresh lemon peel

2 Tbls fresh lemon juice
Springs of fresh mint for garnish

Mix all ingredients together.  Puree until pineapple is completely blended and mint leaves are finely chopped.  Place in the freezer in a backing pan until mixture is firm but not solid, about 1 to 2 hours.  Scoop out into sherbet or tall parfait glasses.  Garnish with mint sprigs and serve.



To find any recipe featured this month - use the search box and type: GardAug

To find any theme recipe from this year type: recipe2018

For 2018 the monthly recipe themes will be:
   January - Chicken Soup (ChickJan)
   February - Beef Stew (StewFeb)
   March - Jambalaya (JambMar)
   May - Ham and Shrimp Dishes (ShrHamMay)
   June - Bread recipes (BreadJun)
   July - Grilling (GrillJul)
   August- Garden Delights GardAug
   September - Salsa, Corn and Jelly 
   October - Squash Dishes 
   November - Pumpkin Recipes 
   December - Herbal Cocktails 

Monday, August 6, 2018

Basil Lime Sorbet recipe


Taking the idea of a garden delight widely I thought that this week I would focus on Sorbet Recipes.  The garden is hot, the work is plentiful, and the need for herbs as a cool refreshing end to the day is perfect for sorbet.  A sorbet can capture the fragrance of summer in a single spoonful. Many people forget the “sweet” part of Basil.  It is a perfect savory foil to citrus and is perfect in many different types of sweets and desserts.  This is a Basil – Lime Sorbet. Tomorrow I will share another.



Basil-Lime Sorbet

Blanching the basil leaves before blending the sorbet base gives you an intensely colored and flavored sorbet. Be sure to freeze it immediately after blending or the color will fade.

3¼ cups water
2 cups basil leaves, gently packed
1 cup fine sugar
¼ cup fresh lime juice

Directions:

Bring water to a boil in small saucepan. Add basil leaves; cook 10 seconds. Drain and plunge basil into cold water. Drain again.

Puree sugar, water, lime juice and blanched basil leaves in blender on high speed for about 1 minute, or until you have a smooth, bright-green liquid. Pour through fine-meshed strainer.

Freeze immediately in an ice cream maker until slushy-firm. Scoop into a storage container and freeze until firm enough to scoop.

To find any recipe featured this month - use the search box and type: GardAug
To find any theme recipe from this year type: recipe2018

For 2018 the monthly recipe themes will be:
   January - Chicken Soup (ChickJan)
   February - Beef Stew (StewFeb)
   March - Jambalaya (JambMar)
   May - Ham and Shrimp Dishes (ShrHamMay)
   June - Bread recipes (BreadJun)
   July - Grilling (GrillJul)
   August- Garden Delights GardAug
   September - Salsa, Corn and Jelly 
   October - Squash Dishes 
   November - Pumpkin Recipes 
   December - Herbal Cocktails 

Sunday, August 5, 2018

Re-energizing Bath Sachet - Monthly Bath Recipe

.
This is a blend similar to our previous energizing bath sachet from 2017, but this one is perfect with summer available herbs.   Mix it ahead and keep in a jar near the tub.  Then place 1/4 cup of blend in a muslin bag or wrap in a terry cloth washcloth.  



Re-energizing Bath Sachet

½ cup lavender flowers
½ cup lemon verbena
½ cup finely chopped orange or lemon peel
10 drops lavender essential oil
6 drops lemon grass oil
Fills 8 bags


Blend the herbs together in a bowl or glass jar, then add each essential oil separately and stir to combine.  Allow to meld overnight, then set aside and fill bags as needed, or pre-fill muslin bags and store in an airtight container.  This recipe will make up to 8 bags.



To Use: Place filled bag under the tap while bath is filling, then slide into the water.  Use the bag as a scrubby to get even more herbal energy!




Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...