Tomato, bread and basil soup

Ingredients

6 cloves garlic
1 small dried red chili pepper
3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 1/2 lb red ripe tomatoes, peeled and chopped
3 tbsp shredded basil leaves
1 tbsp shredded mint leaves
1/2 tsp salt
freshly ground pepper
4 cups hot veggie stock
1 lb day old bread, whole wheat, torn into pieces
freshly grated parmesan cheese

How to prepare

Crush peeled garlic and dried chili in mortar and pestle. Heat olive oil in lg soup pot over low heat. Add crushed chili and garlic and soften over low heat for 4-4 minutes. Add tomatoes, basil and mint and cook over med low for 5 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste and cook 1 more minute. Add the stock and bring to boil. Add all bread at once and stir well over med heat till all bread is moistened. Cover and remove from heat, let stand for 1 hour
before serving taste and season as needed, serve in bowls drizzled with a little olive oil and garnish with freshly grated parmesan.

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Rum-spiced cider

Ingredients

2 qts apple cider, preferably fresh and unfiltered
1/3 cup packed light brown sugar
2 pieces (2″ each) cinnamon stick
12 whole cloves
12 allspice berries
2 cup dark rum
1/2 stick (4 tbsp ) unsalted butter, sliced into 8 pats (optional)
8 long cinnamon sticks, for garnish

How to prepare

In a nonreactive pan combine the cider, brown sugar, short cinnamon sticks, cloves, And all-spice set over medium-low heat, partially cover, and slowly bring just to a Boil, stirring occasionally and skimming any scum that forms on the surface Meanwhile, divide the rum among 8 lg mugs drop a pat of butter and a cinnamon Stick into each mug if desired strain the cider into the mugs and serve immediately Serve 8.

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Warm bean salad with grilled shrimp

Ingredients

12 jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 large garlic cloves, chopped fine
2 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
4 tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
kosher or coarse salt to taste
ground black pepper to taste

3 cups cooked and drained tuscan-style beans (see recipe)
1 lg tomato, seeded and chopped
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
rosemary sprigs, for garnish

How to prepare

In a bowl, combine the shrimp, half the garlic, 1 tbsp of the rosemary and 2 tbsp of the olive oil with salt and pepper. Stir well. Cover and chill 1 hour. In a saucepan, heat the remaining oil, garlic and rosemary over medium heat just until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the beans. Cover and cook over low heat 5 minutes or until warm. Remove from the heat. Stir in tomato, lemon juice and salt and pepper to taste. Grill the shrimp until lightly browned and just opaque in the thickest part, about 5 minutes. Spoon the beans onto 4 plates and surround with shrimp. Garnish with additional rosemary. Yield: makes 4 servings.

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Thai tea

Ingredients

8 cup water
6 tbsp thai tea (cha thai)
sugar
ice cubes
sweetened condensed milk

How to prepare

Bring water to boil. Add tea and steep 5 minutes. Strain and season to taste with sugar. Cool, then chill in refrigerator. When ready to serve, place ice cubes in each of 6 tall glasses. Pour tea over ice, leaving room to add half and half to taste. Yield: 6 servings

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Tortilla soup

Ingredients

1 cup minced onion
2 tbsp olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
2 serrano peppers, seeds removed and minced
1/2 cup minced poblano pepper
2 cups chopped tomato pulp

1 quart rich chicken stock
4 dried chile rojos
1 avocado, chopped
2 tbsp lime juice
2 day-old tortillas, cut into 1/2″ strips

1/4 cup crumbled fresh or farmer’s cheese
2 limes quartered coarse salt

How to prepare

Put the onion and oil in a kettle and put over a low flame. Cook and stir for a minute and add the garlic, serrano and poblano peppers. Cook and stir for another five minutes and add the tomato pulp. Cook and stir for another five minutes and add the chicken stock. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Let cook for an hour and divide among large bowls. Add the chiles rojos, avocados, tortilla strips and cheese. Serve piping hot with the limes on the side for further seasoning. Advise diners to leave dried chile in the soup until it has reached desired degree of spiciness. Servings: four.

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Thai chicken and coconut milk soup

Ingredients

12-ounce can coconut milk
1/4 lb chicken breast, cut into small chunks
juice and grated peel of 1 lime
4″ piece of lemon grass, cut into very thin (1/16″) slices

4 slices of fresh ginger
serranos to taste

How to prepare

In a medium bowl pour the lime juice on the chicken and let stand. In a medium saucepan, place the coconut milk, lemongrass, grated lime peel, ginger, and chiles.(The earlier you add the chiles, the hotter the dish.)
Bring the coconut milk to a simmer. When the soup is simmering, add the lime-soaked chicken pieces and stir to distribute them. Reduce the heat so the soup stays just below a boil and cook for 12 to 15 minutes, or till the chicken pieces are finished cooking.
Remove from heat and serve immediately with fresh cilantro leaves for garnish.

(Tom ka gai or kai tom ga)

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Turkey with greens and walnut vinaigrette

Ingredients

1 tbsp white wine vinegar
1 1/2 tsp honey
1 1/2 tsp sweet hot mustard
1/4 cup olive oil greens and turkey
8 cups mixed baby lettuces
1 cup yellow & red bell pepper, cut into matchstick-size strips
2 5-oz turkey breast cutlets
2 tbsp assort. Chopped fresh herbs
1 large grapefruit
1 large orange
1/4 cup toasted walnut pieces

How to prepare

For vinaigrette: combine first 3 ingredients in small bowl. Gradually whisk in oil. Season with salt and pepper. For greens and turkey: toss greens, bell peppers and herbs together in large bowl. Using small sharp knife, cut peel and pith off fruit. Working over bowl to catch juice, cut fruit between membranes to release segments. Prepare barbecue (medium heat) or preheat broiler. Add fruit to greens. Add nuts to vinaigrette. Season turkey with salt and pepper. Grill until cooked through, about 2 minutes per side. Toss greens with some of vinaigrette. Divide among plates. Top with turkey. Drizzle turkey with vinaigrette. Pass remaining vinaigrette separately. 2 servings the sonoma mission inn & spa offers this innovative entree.

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Home-made ginger beer

Ingredients

2 oz fresh ginger
2 lemons
1 tsp cream of tartar
1 lb sugar
1 gal boiling water
1 oz yeast

How to prepare

They should be of a strong material and have firm caps with metal springs to imprison the effervescent liquid – it’s more explosive than champagne. Makes 1 gallon
roughly crush the ginger root. Wash and slice the lemons into thick rings. Put the ginger, lemon, cream of tartar and sugar in a large bowl. Pour the boiling water over. Stir and leave to cool to blood temperature. Stir in the yeast. Leave to ferment for 24 hours. Skim off the yeast. Strain and bottle the liquid. Leave for three days before broaching it. Yield: 1 servings

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Blueberry salsa

Ingredients

2 cups blueberries
1/2 med red onion, chopped fine
2 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
1 red bell pepper, cored, diced
3 tbsp cilantro, fresh, chopped
1/4 cup lime juice, fresh
1 tsp kosher salt

How to prepare

Coarsely chop 1 and 1/2 cups of blueberries. In a bowl combine the chopped and whole blueberries and the remaining salsa ingredients. Let stand for one hour. Serving size : 4

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