Blackberry Corn and Jalapeno Salad

This simple and delicious corn salad combines great flavors of the season : corn, blackberries, jalapeno peppers and basil. Fresh lime juice brightens the flavors. It’a a refreshing and colorful side dish , that works with most grilled entrees.

From by the bay, wishing you corn and blackberry food memories!

Maryann

blog corn blackberry

Blackberry Corn and Jalapeno Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 5 ears of corn, shucked
  • 1/2 red onion, sliced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh lime juice ( 2-3 limes)
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced in half rings
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper to taste
  • 6 ounces fresh blackberries
  • 3 tablespoons torn fresh mint leaves

Directions

In a large pot of salted water boiling water add corn for 3 minutes. Drain and immerse in ice water to stop cooking. cool corn down with water. While corn is cooling, place red onion in lime juice and let sit for 10 to 15 minutes to soften. When corn is cool, cut the kernels off the cob. Place kernels in a large bowl, along with the olive oil, red onions with lime juice and jalapeno. Toss well. Add salt and pepper to taste and toss again. Just before serving add the blackerries and mint and gently toss.

 

 

 

Fried Chicken Cutlet over Dandelion Greens

This is a mash up of  chicken milanese on a bed of arugula  with some favorite flavors of southern cooking, with a great end result. The chicken is marinated in buttermilk and hot sauce and then dipped in breadcrumbs,  with a nice crunchy result with a little kick too!  This chicken is actually much easier to make than the traditional milanese version that requires dipping in flour then egg then breadcrumbs. The dandelion salad is perfect complement with a slightly peppery taste , enhanced with the taste of lemons! It’s perfect summer dining!

From by the bay wishing you dandelion food memories!

Maryann

blog chic dandelion salad

Fried Chicken Cutlet over Dandelion Greens

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound extra thin skinless chicken cutlet
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 3 cups panko crumbs
  • 1 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon hot paprika
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • canola oil
  • bunch of dandelions greens bottoms removed and cleaned
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • fine sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • lemon slices, to garnish
  • grated parmesan cheese

Directions

In a shallow bowl add buttermilk and hot sauce. Whisk together. Add chicken cutlet , cover with plastic wrap and  place in refrigerator for two hours. Bring to room temperature before cooking.  In food processor add panko crumbs and process into fine crumbs.  In a shallow bowl add panko, flour, paprika and pepper. Mix well.  Remove chicken from buttermilk and dredge in the panko mixture on both sides.  Let sit on a baking sheet as you coat the rest of the chicken. In the meantime, In a large saucepan add 1/2 inch canola oil . Place oil on medium to high heat. Test the oil by flicking flour or bread crumbs into the oil. If it doesn’t sizzle, wait or the chicken will be soggy. When the oil is hot, test it again by dipping the edge of a piece of chicken into the oil, the oil should gently sizzle. Cook the chicken in the oil in batches on both sides until it is a lovely golden brown color and is crispy, about 4 to 5 minutes. Do not crowd the pan or the chicken will become very greasy and soggy. When the chicken comes out of the oil lay it on paper towels to drain off the excess oil and sprinkle with salt. You can keep the chicken in a low oven to keep it warm while the rest of the chicken is cooking. Prepare greens by tossing with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper.  Place greens on a platter and add the chicken cutlets. Garnish with lemon slices and cheese. Serve immediately.

Hint: When shopping for dandelion greens make sure that you are getting young greens, that are GREEN, if they are older they will be yellow, the stalks harder……organic is the way to go with this green, otherwise use arugula as you salad.

 

 

Shrimp BLT Roll

I was craving a lobster roll, but that takes money, time and some real commitment.  This is the lazy girl’s lobster roll, but without compromising taste!  The shrimp are easy to make and if you are even more lazy and sometimes I am , I buy the shrimp already cooked, in which case you are whipping up this shrimp roll in minutes……..held back by how fast you can crisp up those slices of bacon!! The roll has a slight kick from the hot sauce the a fresh tangy taste from the lemon juice. This is a perfect quick summer dinner especially on those hot evenings when you don’t want to spend much time in the kitchen or at the grill!

From by the bay , wishing you some BLT food memories!

Maryann

blog shrimp roll

Shrimp BLT Roll

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 bay leave
  • 1 pound headless large shrimp ( 24 -26 per pound), cleaned and deveined
  • 3 thick slices slab bacon, cooked crispy and chopped
  • 1/2 cup high quality store bought mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon hot sauce
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 2 red tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 4 leaves soft green lettuce, such as boston or butter
  • 4 top loading hot dog buns
  • 2 scallions, ( use white and green parts), finely chopped

Directions

In a stockpot add about 2 quarts water salt and bay leave. Bring to a boil. Add shrimp and cook until they turn pink. Strain removing bay leave and cool shrimp under cold running water to stop from cooking.  When shrimp are completely cool chop and place in bowl along with 1/2 of the chopped scallions.  In a small bowl add mayonnaise, lemon juice, hot sauce, mustard and pepper. Whisk together and pour over the shrimp. Fold sauce and shrimp together. To assemble sandwich open the bun and add 1 slice lettuce, 1/4 chopped tomato, 1/4 shrimp salad. Repeat for remaining shrimp rolls. Garnish each roll with remaining scallions and chopped crispy bacon. Serve immediately.

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fresh Ricotta

There is no finer time on the calendar than tomato season.  I  especially enjoy the many heirloom varieties  available to us once more. I can be completely happy with a tomato sea salt and a little olive oil, but sometimes, I’m looking to make a tomato salad that is a little more robust. It seems that using mozzarella cheese along with tomatoes is so predictable, so I went with adding my homemade ricotta cheese, with wonderful results. It’s the right balance of creaminess against the slightly acidic tomatoes.  It’s a match made in heaven !

From by the bay wishing you heirloom food memories!

Maryann

blog tomato ricotta salad

Heirloom Tomato Salad with Fresh Ricotta

Serves 4 

  • 4 large heirloom tomatoes, cut into 1/4 inch thick rounds
  • 8 to 10 basil leaves
  • 1 recipe fresh ricotta cheese or good quality store bought
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon champagne vinegar
  • Fine sea salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste

Directions

Assemble on a platter tomato slices. Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar. Add teaspoons of ricotta cheese on top of tomatoes. Scatter basil leaves. Add salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately.

 

 

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

Ingredients

  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions

Line a sieve with a dampened cheesecloth and place over a bowl to strain the cheese. Place all the ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a full boil, stirring occasionally. The mixture will start to separate in curds ( the thick part that is the cheese) and whey ( the thin liquid you drain off). Once that happens, pour into the sieve, catching the ricotta into the cheesecloth lined sieve. Let stand for 20 to 25 minutes letting the liquid drain off. Let drain depending how thick and moist you want. the longer it drains the thicker and drier the ricotta. Once drained, take the cheese out of the cheesecloth and store in a container in the refrigerator until ready to use. This will stay 3 to 4 days.

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

I would read about making my own ricotta cheese and think who needs to do that but then day I forgot to buy ricotta for a recipe I was making.  I was not in the mood to go back out to the store that day.  So with a quick visit to the internet I found a recipe using just milk , vinegar and salt, ingredients I always have at home, thankfully!  I could not believe how easy  it was to make and it tasted so good. Over time I’ve experimented with many versions and they all work. I think the recipe to use actually depends on how you are using the ricotta. If the ricotta is one of the star ingredients of your dish you might choose the richest version of ricotta using heavy cream, but it you are mixing it into something else like a salad or into a pasta you might choose the all milk or buttermilk version.  I’ve enjoyed all of these ricotta cheeses and I must say I regularly choose DIY over buying now that I know how easy it is.

From by the bay wishing you DIY food memories!

Maryann

blog ricotta 3

Homemade Ricotta Cheese

Ingredients

  • 3 cups whole milk
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions

Line a sieve with a dampened cheesecloth and place over a bowl to strain the cheese. Place all the ingredients in a saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a full boil, stirring occasionally. The mixture will start to separate in curds ( the thick part that is the cheese) and whey ( the thin liquid you drain off). Once that happens, pour into the sieve, catching the ricotta into the cheesecloth lined sieve. Let stand for 20 to 25 minutes letting the liquid drain off. Let drain depending how thick and moist you want. the longer it drains the thicker and drier the ricotta. Once drained, take the cheese out of the cheesecloth and store in a container in the refrigerator until ready to use. This will stay 3 to 4 days.

Variations – all good and I’ve made and enjoyed each one depending on the ingredients on hand. 

  • Use only whole milk for a slightly less creamy version, this is great if you don’t have any heavy cream.
  • Replace the heavy cream with buttermilk, don’t use any vinegar for a drier textured ricotta, good for cooking

blog ricotta 2

 

Pickled Cucumbers with Dill and Lemon

 

My grandparents grew lots of cucumbers on their farm on Long Island. Come late summer my grandmother would make jars of pickles, using lots of the fresh dill from the farm.  I have to settle for buying my product at the farm stand today, but I don’t need to settle on the flavors I enjoyed from my grandmother. This is a really easy recipe for making pickled cucumbers , perfect for any weekend barbecue , as well as a  low calorie snack to enjoy anytime!  This is simply cutting a few things , boiling a few ingredients and you have pickled cucumbers to go! Impress your family and friends this weekend with this simple delicious side!

From by the bay wishing you pickled food memories!

Maryann

 

blog pickles

 

Pickled Cucumbers with Dill and Lemon

Makes 1 quart

Ingredients

  • 1 pound kirby cucumbers
  • 1 shallot
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 3 springs dill
  • 1/2 cup white wine vinegar
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/2 cup lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 3 teaspoons fine sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Directions

Have ready a 1 quart size glass container such as a mason jar. Trim the ends off of the kirby cucumbers and slice in 1/4 inch rounds. Peel and thinly slice the shallot. Peel and crush the garlic cloves. Take the glass jar and layer the cucumbers, then shallots , garlic and dill. Repeat until you have layered all your ingredients. Add the remaining ingredients into a saucepan and bring to simmer.  Remove from heat and pour over the cucumbers. Let cool to room temperature. Seal tightly and place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before serving. The pickled cucumbers will last about 2 weeks stored in the refrigerator.

 

 

 

Bloody Mary Mix with Candied Bacon

 I recently rediscovered the Bloody Mary at brunch a few weeks ago.  The reason I abandoned this wonderful drink was due to all the poor tasting versions I had over the the years.  You can only drink watered down tomato juice with a splash of vodka so many times before giving up. The Bloody Mary I drank a few weeks ago was something completely different. It had the best quaility ingredients and as we know that can make all the difference!! So I set out on the happy task of making my own bloody mary mix and then to make it extra special I added a candied strip of bacon to stir the cocktail. The mix is peppery with from the fresh horseradish, with some heat from the cayenne and a freshness thanks to all that lemon juice. Make sure the Bloody Mary is icy cold to really enjoy all the flavors. Dipping that sweet crispy candied bacon into the cold spicy Bloody Mary and taking a bite  really is heaven!  I suggest a pitcher for your next lazy weekend!!

From by the bay, wishing you Bloody Mary food memories and don’t forget the bacon!

Maryann

blog bloody mary

Bloody Mary Mix with Candied Bacon

Makes approximately 32 ounces of mix

Ingredients

  • 1 (25-ounce) jar tomato passata,  preferably San Marzano or best quality tomato juice
  • 3 tablespoons freshly grated horseradish or best quality prepared grated horseradish
  • 1/2 cup fresh lemon juice from 4 to 5 lemons
  • 3 celery stalks, cut into 1 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tablespoon white vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon fine grey sea salt
  • 1 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 8 slices bacon, 1/4 inch thick, best quality
  • 1/4 cup dark brown sugar

Directions
Place tomato passata in a bowl. In a food processor add the celery and 1/4 cup water and blend. Strain liquid into a cup.  You should have about 1/4 cup liquid. Discard the solids and add the celery infused water to the tomatoes.  To the tomato base add horseradish, lemon juice, remaining 1/4 cup water, vinegars, salt, 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and cayenne. Refrigerate until ready to use. About an hour before serving preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Place bacon, brown sugar and 1 teaspoon black pepper in a bowl.  Mix well. Place slices  bacon flat onto the parchment paper. Sprinkle any remaining sugar on the bacon. Cover bacon with a second sheet of parchment. Place a second baking sheet on top of the parchment. This will keep the bacon flat while cooking. Place in the oven and bake for 20 minutes, remove top baking sheet and parchment paper and let continue to bake another 10 minutes or until crispy and a dark brown color. Remove from oven and place on rack to cool immediately.

To make Bloody Mary:

Take 3 parts bloody mary mix to 1 part vodka. Mix well. Serve chilled or over ice. Place a slice of candied bacon into each bloody mary just as you serve.

 

 

Spare Ribs with Bourbon Apple Barbecue Sauce

blog apple ribs

 Summer evenings are meant for enjoying barbecue foods and nothing is more satisifying than lip smacking and finger licking ribs. This recipe highlights a barbecue sauce that is tomato based with added sweetness from fresh apple and a hint of bourbon.  A touch of molasses creates that lovely sweet bark finish. The best part  of this rib recipe is that they are made in the oven with minimal work but fantastic results. The meat from these ribs just pull off the bone. Summer is officially here this weekend, this is the perfect dish to celebrate!

From by the bay, wishing you summer food memories!

Maryann

Spare Ribs with Bourbon Apple Barbecue Sauce
Serves 4 as main course or 8 as appetizer

Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 lbs. racks baby back ribs
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 apple, peeled, cored and chopped
  • 1/2 cup bourbon
  • 3 tablespoons molasses
  • 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon worcestershire sauce
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper

Directions
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. In a small sauce pan add all ingredients except for ribs. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 20 minutes, then turn off heat and cool. Puree in a food processor and set aside covered. In a large roasting pan lined with aluminum foil place the ribs in a single layer. Place in oven to brown for 30 minutes. After the 30 minutes remove ribs from pan and pour off any juice and fat. Place the ribs back into the pan. Use half the barbecue sauce and pour over and spread over the ribs. Lower the oven to 400 degrees F and place the ribs back in the oven, turning the ribs over and covering them with the remaining sauce. Bake for another 30 minutes and remove from the oven. The ribs can be served immediately or at room temperature.

Ricotta Strawberry Muffins

 

 

 

 

blog straw muf

My grandparents farm had lots of fresh strawberries to pick. The strawberries would rarely last long enough to bake . I would say the same holds true today. But if you do find yourself with some berries this is the perfect morning treat.  A moist muffin that is not too sweet. It’s the perfect start to a nice relaxing weekend morning!

From by the bay , wishing you berry food memories!

Maryann

Ricotta Strawberry Muffins
Makes 12 muffins

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup white sugar, plus extra tablespoon to sprinkle on top of muffins
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 4 tablespoons melted butter
  • 3/4 cup fresh ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 eggs
  • 3/4 cup fresh strawberries, hulled and chopped

Directions
Preheat oven to 400 F. Take a 12 muffin pan and line with paper baking cups. Put tin to the side. In a bowl combine flour, 1/4 cup sugar, salt, baking powder, baking soda and lemon zest. Add melted butter, ricotta cheese and stir. Add the eggs to the buttermilk , mix and pour into the flour mixture and combine. Add strawberries, mix and then fill each muffin liner about 3/4 filled. sprinkle tops of muffins with remaining sugar. Place tin on baking sheet and bake on the center rack for 20 to 25 minutes until cake tester comes out clean. Cool 5 minutes then remove muffins to wire rack to cool. Serve warm or room temperature.

blog straw muf 2

Asparagus, Egg and Croutons with Pine Nut Dressing

I recently had dinner with a good friend of mine at Franny’s in Brooklyn.  Over a great bottle of wine we shared a few dishes and this one was a seasonal standout. We enjoyd the roasted asparagus topped with a creamy and nutty pine nut dressing, egg and croutons. Here is my take on a memorable dish. It may seem as if this is a lot of steps, but they are all little simple ones and the results are delicious. You could double the recipe and it make it the star dish of the evening and serve it with something simple off the grill.  

From by the bay, wishing for Franny-like  food memories!

Maryann

 http://frannysbrooklyn.com/

blog asp salad

Asparagus, Egg and Croutons with Pine Nut Dressing

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1 pound fresh asparagus
  • 1 egg
  • 1 thick slice rustic bread
  • 1/4 cup pine nuts
  • 1/4 cup olive oil, plus 2 teaspoons for bread and asparagus
  • 1 tablespoon wine vinegar
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt

Directions

To make the egg, place in small sauce pan and cover with cold water. Bring to a low simmer for 1 minute.  Remove from heat and cover. Keep covered for 10 minutes. Remove egg from the pan and place in an ice bath or cool under cold water. Set aside. Preheat over to 400 degrees F. Place bread on baking sheet and brush both sides with 1/2 teaspoon olive oil. Place in oven for 5 minutes until one side is brown, turn over for another 3 to 5 minutes until brown. Remove from oven and cool. Pull bread apart into large pieces to make croutons. Clean and trim stems of the asparagus and place on baking sheet. Drizzle asparagus with remaining 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and  1/8 teaspoon fresh ground pepper. Place in the same oven for about 15 minutes until the asparagus are tender and start to brown. Place asparagus on a serving platter. Remove from oven and cool. Place a small dry pan with pine nuts over medium heat until the nuts start to brown. Remove from heat and cool. Take 1 tablespoon of the toasted pine nuts aside to garnish.  To make dressing  place the remaining pine nuts go into a small food processor. Add 1/4 cup olive oil, vinegar, 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt  and pulse until blended and creamy. Peel egg and break into small pieces over the asparagus, then drizzle dressing and add croutons and remaining toasted pine nuts. Serve immediately at room temperature.