Place a large pot on a medium heat, add olive oil and heat for 1-2 minutes , add pancetta and saute until crisp, then add garlic and onion, saute until soft, about 5 minutes add chili flakes and pepper and saute another minute. Add to the pot the tomatoes with liquid breaking the tomatoes with the back of your spoon, next add the clam juice and thyme. Bring to a boil add the clams and cover. Cook until clams are open, discard any unopened clams. Serve immediately with bread or pasta.
Maple Roasted Sweet Potato and Arugula Salad
2 cups sweet potato, peeled and chopped
1 red onion, sliced
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
¼ teaspoon dried red chili flakes
3 cups baby arugula leaves
2 tablespoons gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
½ teaspoon fresh ground black pepper
Coarse sea salt to taste
Directions to roast sweet potatoes and red onion:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Line with parchment a baking sheet add the sweet potato cubes, sliced red onion, 2 tablespoons olive oil, 2 tablespoons maple syrup, red chili and salt. Mix well. Place in oven and roast for 45 minutes.
Directions for toasted pine nuts:
Use a small dry fry pan heat and add the pine nuts stirring until they are golden brown. Remove from heat and let cool.
Directions to assemble salad:
To a bowl or serving platter add the arugula with remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and toss. To the arugula add the roasted sweet potatoes and red onions. Top with crumbled gorgonzola cheese, pine nuts, black pepper and finish with coarse sea salt to taste. Serve warm.
Last summer I had the opportunity to meet one of my favorite rock and roll artists. His music is what I play to dance my way through creating and preparing a meal. So of course, upon meeting him, I was tongue tied. With that, I fell back to comfortable ground – food. Who knew that would be a topic he enjoyed discussing. Our conversation included a little comparison of recipes and his search for the perfect gazpacho recipe. He shared a few hints and with that I created this recipe. My version already has lots of rave reviews. Here’s hoping he will be blue no more looking for that gazpacho. I’ve added another cold soup recipe to get you through the summer, this one is a cold cucumber soup for the coolest guy I know!
Blue No More Gazpacho
1 28 ounce can whole fire roasted tomatoes ( if you can’t find fire roasted use canned whole plum tomatoes)
1 large roasted red pepper , from a jar packed in olive oil
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 jalapeno pepper , seeded and chopped
1/2 white onion, coarsely chopped
1 medium cucumber, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 celery stalks, chopped
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 teaspoons sea salt
1 teaspoon coarse ground pepper
Place all the ingredients into food processor and process until pureed. Chill for at least 2 hours before serving.
Hint: to make a terrific and easy salsa, use the gazpacho recipe without the roasted red peppers!
Cool Cucumber Gazpacho
1 1/2 cups plain greek yogurt
2 medium size cucumbers, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 scallions, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons fresh dill
1 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1/2 teaspoon coarse ground black pepper
Place all of the ingredients into a food processor and pulse until pureed. Place soup into a glass mason jar and refrigerate for at least 4 hours before serving.
I think of myself as a weekday warrior and weekend goddess. I spend the work week as a fashion warrior, working hard in a very competitive industry, living in Manhattan in a city of grey and black. The pace is fast. My weekend’s are a complete shift . I move from the city to the country, living by the bay. The water is majestic and calming. The landscape is filled with color. I move from working at the desk to creating in the kitchen . I travel to “by the bay” on fridays evenings by train. No matter what time I arrive, I’ll find the time to transition from weekday warrior to weekend goddess. The surest way to get there is getting into my kitchen and whip up a quick dinner after the commute to the house. One of my things to make is pizza. I have tried so many different pizza dough recipes and my favorite is the one from Jamie Oliver . I have adapted the technique to make the dough a little easier to prepare and as well as the clean up. This version also works well when using your home oven. I, like most home cooks, do not have my own wood burning pizza oven in my backyard. This recipe works perfectly using your oven. You must try this pizza dough and I’m sharing two favorite pizza toppings – but pizza toppings is definitely one of times you can really get creative and experiment. So have fun with this and hope it inspires the weekend goddess in each of you!
From by the bay wishing you the most creative food memories!
Basic Pizza Dough – adapted from Jamie Oliver’s recipe in “Jamie’s Italy”
Makes 2 – 17 inch pizzas
3 1/2 cups strong white bread flour or Tipo “00” flour
1 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/4-ounce packets active dried yeast
1 teaspoon fine granulated sugar
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 1/4 cups lukewarm water
extra semolina flour , for rolling
In a measuring cup combine water, sugar , oil and yeast. Let sit for about 10 minutes. In the meantime measure the flour and salt and combine in a large mixing bowl. Create a small well in the middle of the flour and add the ingredients from the measuring cup. Use a fork to swirl and combine incorporating as much of the liquid into the flour as you. Turn out the dough on to a clean work surface , with well floured hands start to knead the dough together. Knead until you have a smooth dough – about ten minutes. Place in a bowl tht has been wiped with olive oil and cover with plastic wrap. Let sit for about an hour. Remove plastic wrap and punch the dough down. Divde dough into 2 portions. Roll dough on on to a work surface floured with the semolina and roll out into a 17 inch circle with a rolling pin, continuing to use semolina so the dough does not stick to the work surface of rolling pin. Place onto a 17 inch oiled pizza pan. Use the topping of your choice and bake in a 500 degree F oven for approximately 10 minutes until baked.
The remaining portion of dough can be used immediately or keep in the refrigerator for up to two days. When ready to use remove from refrigerator and bring to room temperature before rolling out. You may also place in a plastic freezer bag and keep in the freezer for up to one month. Defrost on counter before rolling out.
Pizza La Luna
Makes 8 slices
1 portion pizza dough
3 cooked chicken sausage broken in small pieces
6 slow slow roasted tomatoes
½ cup crumbled Soft Colombo Gorgonzola
½ cup shaved pecorino
1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves
¼ cup caramelized onions
1 tablespoon olive oil plus to prep pan
Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. Spray pizza pan with olive oil. Roll out pizza dough into a 17” round to fit pizza pan and transfer dough to pan. Layer pizza with sausage, caramelized onions, gorgonzola, pecorino and rosemary. Drizzle very lightly with olive oil. Let rest 20 minutes. Place pizza in oven and
ake pizza on center rack until the crust is crisp and brown on bottom and the cheese is melted on top, about 10 minutes. Cut pizza into 8 slices.
Tip: Cut slightly cooled pizza with scissor.
Bianco Broccoli Rabe Pizza
Makes 8 slices
1 portion pizza dough
1 cup broccoli rabe
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup fresh ricotta cheese
1/4 cup grated parmesan reggiano
1/2 cup grated percorino (using large hole grater)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Clean broccoli rabe, cutting off stems. Bring to boil large pot of water. Add broccoli rabe and blanche for about 1 minute. Drain and rinse broccoli rabe with cold water and let drain. Pat broccoli rabe dry with paper towels. In a medium saute pan heat 1 tablespoon olive oil, add garlic and saute for one minute, add broccoli rabe and saute for 2-3 minutes until tender. Place to the side and cool. Preheat oven to 500 degrees F. On a clean surface add some flour and roll out the pizza dough until it fits a 17″ pizza pan, presprayed with olive oil. Place dough on pan. Smooth layer of ricotta cheese across the pizza leaving 1/2 inch around the edges without the topping. Next add the broccoli rabe, scatter the parmesan cheese and the the grated percorino. Place in the oven and bake for 10 minutes until the pizza is brown. Slice and serve.
Maple, Pecan and Apple Granola
2 cups rolled oats (not quick cooking)
1/2 cup pecans, chopped
1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
6 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
6 tablespoons maple syrup
½ cup dark brown sugar
½ teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup dried raisins
1/2 cup dried apples slices, chopped
Preheat oven to 300 degrees F. Combine all ingredients except the dried fruit into a mixing bowl, combine well. On a parchment lined sheet spread ingredients in 1 layer. Bake for 50 minutes until brown stirring every ten minutes until mixture is browned. Remove from oven and cool granola. Once cooled add dried fruit and mix. Keep in airtight container. It should keep about one week.
2 1/2 cups fresh peaches, stoned and chopped
1/2 cup ketchup
1/4 cup peach preserves
1 tablespoon garlic, chopped
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons light soy sauce
1 tablespoon dijon mustard
1 tablespoon jalapeno chopped
1 tablespoon lime juice
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Place on ingredients into a medium sauce pan and place onto a medium heat. Stir ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for 30 minutes. Cool and blend in a food processor. Place in a jar until ready to use . Barbecue sauce will last 3 days
Mitzi’s Plum Cake
¼ pound unsalted butter softened plus 1 tablespoon
½ cup fine sugar, plus 1 teaspoon for topping the cake
1 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
6 italian plums
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Split plums and remove pits. Place plums in bowl, cover with lemon juice, mix and set aside. Using electric mixer combine ¼ lb butter and sugar until fluffy, then add egg and combine. Next add the flour and baking powder and combine. This makes a soft dough. Take an 8” non stick cake pan line with parchment and butter and flour the pan. Press the dough into the pan covering the bottom of the cake pan. Use a spatula to spread evenly on the bottom of the pan. Press plums into dough with the cut side facing up in a concentric circle. Combine 1 teaspoon sugar with ½ teaspoon cinnamon, mix and sprinkle on top of the plums. Dot with extra butter. Bake for approximately 45 minutes, until cake tester is clean.
Variations: replace plums with apricots or peaches