This excellent dish from Bon Appetit combines fall mushrooms with pasta and a creamy, buttery sauce. Cook the mushrooms in batches so they become crisp; if there are too many in the pan they will steam, not brown. Add shallots and prepare the pasta. Add cream and cooked pasta to the mushrooms and simmer for a few minutes before adding butter, parsley and Parmesan. The recipes also calls for lemon juice and zest, but I prefer this dish without them.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

If using lemon juice, use freshly squeezed juice, not a concentrate. Check the butter to be sure it does not contain colour. Genuine Parmesan is additive-free.

Brown the mushrooms

Creamy pasta with crispy mushrooms

Ingredients:

4 Tbsp. (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1 lb. (454 g) mixed mushrooms (such as maitake, oyster, crimini, and/or shiitake), torn into bite-size pieces

Kosher salt

2 medium shallots, finely chopped

1 lb. (454 g) spaghetti or bucatini

½ cup (125 ml) heavy cream

⅓ cup (85 ml) finely chopped parsley

Zest and juice of ½ lemon

2 Tbsp. (30 ml) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

½ oz. (14 g) Parmesan, finely grated (about ½ cup/125 ml), plus more for serving

Freshly ground black pepper

Preparation:

Heat 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) oil in a large pot over medium-high. Cook half of mushrooms in a single layer, undisturbed, until edges are brown and starting to crisp, about 3 minutes. Give mushrooms a toss and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until all sides are brown and crisp, about 5 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to a plate; season with salt. Repeat with remaining 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) oil and mushrooms and more salt.

Reduce heat to medium-low and return all of the mushrooms to the pot. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until shallots are translucent and softened, about 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente, about 2 minutes less than package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup (250 ml) pasta cooking liquid.

Using tongs, transfer pasta to pot with mushrooms and add cream and reserved pasta cooking liquid. Increase heat to medium, bring to a simmer, and cook, tossing constantly, until pasta is al dente and liquid is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.

Remove pot from heat. Add lemon zest and juice, parsley, butter, ½ oz. Parmesan, and lots of pepper and toss to combine. Taste and season with more salt if needed.

Divide pasta among bowls and top with more Parmesan. Serves 4

From Bon Appetit

This delicious one-pan fish dish from Bon Appetit combines curry butter-topped fish with roasted vegetables. Cook the vegetables for about 35 minutes. Meanwhile, make the curry butter. Place the fish on the vegetables, drizzle with the butter and cook for about 15 minutes or until fish is done. Cook’s note: I omitted the fennel and mint.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Make sure your butter contains only one ingredient: cream, with no colour added. Check your curry powder to ensure it does not contain colour or anti-caking agents. To make your own curry powder, combine the following ingredients (also ensuring they are additive- and colour-free).

Place fish on top of roasted vegetables and top with curry butter

Roast fish with curry butter

Curry powder

2 tbsp (30 ml) ground cumin

1 tsp (5 ml) crushed or ground fenugreek seed

1 tsp (5 ml) ground ginger

¼ tsp (1 ml) crushed dried dill

¼ tsp (1 ml) ground mace

¼ tsp (1 ml) ground cardamom

¼ tsp (1 ml) dried mustard

1/8 tsp (0.5 ml) ground turmeric

¼ tsp (1 ml) freshly ground pepper

Pinch of cayenne pepper

Roast fish with curry butter

Ingredients:

1 fennel bulb, sliced

1 large red onion, cut through root end into 8 wedges

1 lb. (454 g) baby Yukon Gold potatoes, halved if large

3 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

Kosher salt

4 Tbsp. (60 ml) unsalted butter

2 garlic cloves, crushed

1 ½-inch (3.8-cm) piece ginger, peeled, finely chopped

1 tsp. (5 ml) curry powder

1¼ lb. (567 g) piece cod, hake, haddock, or pollock

Mint (for serving)

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 425° F (218° C) . Toss fennel, onion, potatoes, and oil in a 3-qt. (3 L) baking dish to coat; season with salt. Roast, tossing once, until vegetables are browned and softened, 35–40 minutes.

Meanwhile, melt butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Mix in garlic, ginger, curry powder, and a pinch of salt. Simmer until color intensifies, about 1 minute. Remove from heat.

Season fish with salt and lay on top of cooked vegetables. Drizzle fish with curry butter. Reduce oven temperature to 350° F (176° C)  and bake fish until flesh easily flakes apart with a fork, 12–15 minutes.

Serve vegetables and fish with mint scattered over. Serves 4.

From Bon Appetit

This recipe for the New York Times is a Korean dish also known as cheese buldak. It sounds a little strange to melt cheese over chicken, but it is delicious and the version made by Internet star Emily Kim (aka Maangchi) has had seven million views on YouTube! I used regular hot pepper flakes and Sriracha instead of the Korean hot pepper flakes and red-pepper paste. The rice cakes are optional.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Check the red-pepper flakes and red-pepper paste for additives and colour. I used Simply Organic sriracha as a substitute for the gochujang and tamari instead of soy sauce. No-name pizza mozzarella is an additive-free low-moisture cheese.

Stir fry the chicken

Place the sliced cheese on top

Broil until melted and beginning to brown

Fire chicken

Ingredients:

¼  cup (60 ml) gochugaru (Korean red-pepper flakes)

2  tablespoons (30 ml) gochujang (Korean red-pepper paste)

3  tablespoons (45 ml) light brown sugar

3  cloves garlic, peeled and minced (about 2 tablespoons/30 ml)

1  (1-inch/2.54-cm) piece ginger, peeled and minced (about 1 tablespoon)

1  tablespoon (15 ml) soy sauce

½  teaspoon (2.5 ml) freshly ground black pepper

1 pound (454 g) boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into ¾-inch cubes

2  tablespoons (30 ml) neutral oil, such as canola or peanut

4  ounces (113 g) sliced Korean rice cakes (optional)

6 to 8  ounces (170 to 226 g) low-moisture mozzarella, thinly sliced

2  scallions, sliced, for garnish

Preparation:

Combine the gochugaru, gochujang, brown sugar, garlic, ginger, soy sauce and black pepper in a medium bowl and mix well. Add the chicken and stir until it is well coated.

If you’re using the rice cakes, swirl the oil into a large, oven-safe skillet set over medium-high heat and wait for it to shimmer. Add the rice cakes and cook, turning the cakes often, until they are a little crisp, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer the rice cakes to a small bowl and set aside. If you’re not using rice cakes, simply swirl the oil into the pan and move along to the next step.

Add the chicken mixture to the pan along with ¼ cup (60 ml) water. Cover and cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the chicken is cooked through, 8 to 10 minutes, stirring in the rice cakes halfway through, if using. Meanwhile, heat the broiler in your oven.

Remove the chicken from the heat. Cover the pan with the sliced mozzarella, then slide the pan under the broiler. Cook until the cheese has melted and browned in spots, about 2 minutes. Remove from the oven, and sprinkle with scallions. Serve immediately, with rice. Serves 4.

From the New York Times

This farro salad from Food52 feeds a crowd and brims with the late summer season’s tomatoes and herbs. Cook the farro in water with onion, garlic and parsley and let it cool. Meanwhile, make the dressing and assemble the other ingredients. Add the farro and toss with the dressing.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Tre Stelle bocconcini cheese is additive-free, as are Pilaros Kalamata olives. Spectrum Organic balsamic vinegar and Eden Organic red wine vinegar contain only naturally occurring sulfites.

Cook the farro in water with onion, garlic and parsley

Combine the other ingredients

Make the dressing

Summer farro salad

Ingredients:

2 cups (500 ml) uncooked farro (or substitute barley)

1 medium red onion, cut in half

1 clove garlic

1 handful fresh parsley plus 1 tablespoon (15 ml) finely chopped

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt, plus more if needed

1 cup (250 ml) finely diced fresh mozzarella cheese (bocconcini)

2 teaspoons (10 ml) minced pitted Kalamata olives

2 cups (500 ml) grape tomatoes, cut into quarters

1 tablespoon (15 ml) finely chopped fresh basil

1 pinch freshly ground pepper, to taste

¼ cup (60 ml) extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon (5 ml) balsamic vinegar

1 tablespoon (15 ml) red wine vinegar

2 teaspoons (10 ml) honey

Preparation:

Add the farro, one onion half, garlic, handful of parsley and salt along with 2 ¾  cups (690 ml) water to a 2 quart (2 L) pot. Bring to a boil, then cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 10 minutes. Turn off burner and let sit, covered, for 5 more minutes. Discard the onion, garlic and large pieces of parsley. Spread out on a rimmed sheet pan and let cool completely (do not skip this step or the mozzarella will melt into the finished dish).

Whisk together the olive oil, vinegars and honey to prepare the dressing. Chop the remaining onion half finely. Add onion, cooled farro, mozzarella, Kalamata olives, tomatoes, remaining tablespoon of parsley and basil to a deep bowl. Pour the dressing over the ingredients and stir well to combine, using a long wooden spoon or rubber spatula. Season with salt and pepper. The salad is ready to serve, but can also be made and stored in the fridge, covered, one day ahead. Serves 8-12.

From Food52

This recipe from the New York Times combines tangy lime-soaked shrimp with the bounty of the season — fresh chiles, chives, tomatoes, shallots, cucumber and cilantro. Marinate the shrimp while you make the dressing and prep the veggies. Caramelize the cucumber and corn in a hot skillet, then combine with the tomatoes and shallots and half the dressing. Quickly cook the shrimp in the same pan then add to the vegetables and toss with more dressing.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Look for frozen shrimp with only salt added and use freshly squeezed lime juice. I used Cock brand fish sauce, which is additive-free.

Cook the cucumber and corn until soft and beginning to brown

Add the corn and cucumbers to the other vegetables

Spicy shrimp with blistered cucumber, corn and tomatoes

Ingredients:

Shrimp

½  cup (125 ml) fresh lime juice (from 3 to 4 limes)

3  tablespoons (45 ml) olive oil

2  teaspoons (10 ml) grated ginger

1  large garlic clove, grated

Kosher salt and black pepper

1 pound (454 g) jumbo shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails removed

Dressing

1  serrano or Fresno chile, thinly sliced, plus more to taste

2  tablespoons (30 ml) finely chopped chives or scallions, plus more to taste

1  tablespoon (15 ml) fish sauce, plus more to taste

1  teaspoon (5 ml) light brown sugar, plus more to taste

Salad

2  medium tomatoes, cored and cut into ½ -inch (1.25-cm) wedges

1  medium shallot, thinly sliced into rings

1 ½  cups (375 ml) roughly chopped seedless cucumber (such as English or Persian), cut into ½ -inch (1.25-cm) pieces

1 ½  cups (375 ml) raw corn kernels (from about 2 ears of corn)

¼  cup (60 ml) cilantro (optional), leaves and tender stems, roughly chopped

Flaky sea salt (optional), for serving

Preparation:

In a large bowl, whisk together ¼ cup (60 ml) lime juice, 1 tablespoon (15 ml) olive oil, plus the ginger and garlic; season well with salt and pepper. Add the shrimp, toss to coat and set aside.

Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk together the remaining ¼ cup (60 ml) lime juice with the chile, chives, fish sauce and brown sugar until it dissolves. Taste and adjust seasonings accordingly.

In a large bowl, gently combine the tomatoes and shallot and set aside.

Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high until very hot, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons (30 ml) oil and when it shimmers, add the cucumbers and corn. Season with salt and pepper. Allow the vegetables to cook, undisturbed, until they begin to brown and caramelize in spots, 2 to 3 minutes. Cook, stirring occasionally, until golden all over, 4 to 6 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly, then toss with the tomato-shallot mixture and half the dressing.

Wipe out the pan and heat over medium-high. Leaving the marinade behind and discarding it, add shrimp to the pan and sear until just cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes each side. Alternatively, grill over medium heat, 2 to 3 minutes a side. Add the shrimp to the salad, gently toss to coat and serve on a large platter or in a large bowl. Drizzle with remaining dressing and scatter with cilantro and flaky sea salt, if using. Serves 4.

From the New York Times

The tomatoes are ripe and the temperatures are hot so it’s a perfect time to make this no-cook pasta sauce from Bon Appetit. Blitz tomatoes, garlic, hot pepper flakes and salt in a food processor, then add cherry tomatoes, olives, capers and oil. When the pasta is ready, add it to the sauce, along with some parsley and butter.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used President’s Choice green olives stuffed with garlic and Unico capers; both are free of additives. Use butter that contains only cream, without colour added.

Spaghetti with no-cook puttanesca sauce

Ingredients:

2 beefsteak tomatoes (about 1 lb./454 g), halved crosswise, seeds removed

2 garlic cloves, finely grated

1 tsp. (5 ml) crushed red pepper flakes

2 tsp. (10 ml) kosher salt, plus more

1½ cups (375 ml) cherry tomatoes, halved

1 cup (250 ml) Castelvetrano or other green olives, crushed, pits removed

2 Tbsp. (30 ml) drained capers

¼ cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling

12 oz. (340 g) spaghetti

¼ cup (60 ml) finely chopped parsley

3 Tbsp. (45 ml) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Preparation:

Pulse beefsteak tomatoes, garlic, red pepper flakes, and 2 tsp. (10 ml) salt in a food processor until smooth; transfer sauce to a large bowl and mix in cherry tomatoes, olives, capers, and ¼ cup (60 ml) oil.

Cook spaghetti in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain pasta, reserving ¼ cup (60 ml) pasta cooking liquid.

Add pasta, parsley, and butter to sauce. Toss vigorously with tongs, adding a splash of pasta cooking liquid or more as needed to create an emulsified sauce that coats pasta. Divide among bowls and drizzle with more oil. Serves 4.

From Bon Appetit

Whether it’s from the farmers’ market, the supermarket or your own back yard, there’s nothing like a big bunch of fragrant basil. While this wonderful herb is at its peak, whip up this luscious pesto from Bon Appetit to freeze or use right away as a pasta sauce.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Make sure the pine nuts do not contain additives and the butter contains only cream, with no colour added. Genuine Parmesan is additive-free.

Adding butter makes the sauce even more luscious.

Pasta with pesto

Ingredients:

½ cup (125 ml) pine nuts

3 oz. (85 g) Parmesan, grated (about ¾ cup/185 ml)

2 garlic cloves, finely grated

6 cups (4.5 L) basil leaves (about 3 bunches)

¾ cup (185 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

1 tsp. (5 ml) kosher salt

2 tbsp. (30 ml) unsalted butter, cut into pieces

¼ cup (60 ml) pasta cooking liquid

12 oz. (340 g) dried spaghetti or other long pasta

Grated Parmesan for serving

Preparation:

Preheat oven to 350° F (177° C). Toast pine nuts on a rimmed baking sheet, tossing once halfway through, until golden brown, 5–7 minutes. Transfer to a food processor and let cool. Add cheese and garlic and pulse until finely ground, about 1 minute. Add basil and place the top back on. With the motor running, add oil in a slow and steady stream until pesto is mostly smooth, with just a few flecks of green, about 1 minute. Season with salt.

Do Ahead: Pesto can be made 1 day ahead. Top with ½” oil to prevent browning. Cover with plastic wrap, pressing directly onto surface, and chill. You can also freeze it.

Cook 12 oz. dried pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until al dente. Drain, reserving ½ cup (125 ml) pasta cooking liquid.

Place pesto and 2 Tbsp. (30 ml) unsalted butter, cut into pieces, in a large bowl. Add pasta and ¼ cup (60 ml) pasta cooking liquid. Using tongs, toss vigorously, adding more pasta cooking liquid if needed, until pasta is glossy and well coated with sauce. Season with salt.

Divide pasta among bowls. Top with finely grated Parmesan. Serves 4.

From Bon Appetit

This salad from Canadian Living is easy, quick and tasty. Marinate shrimp, grill corn, remove the kernels and toss with red pepper, red onion and dressing. Grill the shrimp and serve over the salad. Cook’s note: The easiest way to grill the shrimp is to put them on wooden or metal skewers. If using wooden ones, be sure to soak them first so they don’t burn up on the grill.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Use frozen shrimp with only salt added, fresh lime juice, tamari instead of soy sauce and a sesame oil without preservatives, such as Spectrum Natural. Blue Menu black beans are additive-free.

Grilled shrimp with corn and black bean salad

Ingredients:

1 lb (454 g) raw jumbo shrimp

1 tablespoon (15 ml) vegetable oil

1 tablespoon (15 ml) lime juice

1 teaspoon (5 ml) soy sauce

1 teaspoon (5 ml)sesame oil

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) pepper

2 cloves garlic minced

Corn and black bean salad

3 cobs of corn corn

1 can black bean drained and rinsed

1 sweet red pepper diced

½ cup (125 ml) chopped red onion

½ cup (125 ml) coriander leaf coarsely chopped

3 tablespoons (45 ml) vegetable oil

3 tablespoons (45 ml) lime juice

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) ground cumin

¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) pepper

1 Boston lettuce, leaves separated

Preparation:

Peel off shrimp shells, leaving tails on; cut each shrimp lengthwise down back and gently pull out dark vein running down back. In bowl, combine oil, lime juice, soy sauce, sesame oil, pepper and garlic. Add shrimp; toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour.

Meanwhile, husk corn. Place on greased grill over medium-high heat. Close lid and cook, turning occasionally, until kernels are tender and grill-marked, about 15 minutes. Slice off kernels to make 1-½ cups (375 mL); place in bowl. Add black beans, red pepper, onion and coriander.

In small bowl, whisk together oil, lime juice, salt, cumin and pepper. Pour over corn mixture; toss to coat.

Place shrimp on greased grill over medium-high heat. Close lid and cook, turning once, until shrimp are pink, about 6 minutes.

Divide lettuce leaves among plates. Top with salad then grilled shrimp. Serves 4.

From Canadian Living

This recipe from Canadian Living combines pork tenderloin and vegetable skewers with sweet potatoes that have been cooked, sliced and grilled. You can steam or microwave the potatoes in advance and slice and refrigerate them until ready to barbecue. If you are using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them for at least 30 minutes in water so they don’t burn up on the grill.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives:

I use President’s Choice Old-Fashioned Dijon mustard and pure honey.

Mustard-glazed pork skewers with grilled sweet potatoes

Ingredients:

2 medium sweet potatoes, (about 800 g), peeled and cut crosswise in ½ -inch (1 cm) slices

1 tbsp (15 ml) olive oil

1 tsp (5 ml) chopped fresh thyme

¼ tsp (1 ml) each salt and pepper

2 tbsp (30 ml) grainy mustard

1 tbsp (15 ml) hot mustard

2 tsp (10 ml) liquid honey

1 clove garlic, minced

1 lb (454 g) pork tenderloin, trimmed and cut in ¾ -inch (2 cm) cubes

Half red onion, cut in 1-inch (2.5 cm) chunks

Preparation:

In shallow saucepan, pour enough water to come 1 inch (2.5 cm) up side of pan; bring to gentle simmer. Place sweet potato in steamer insert; set in saucepan. Cover and steam until tender, about 10 minutes. Instead of steaming the potatoes, you can pierce them with a fork and microwave on high, turning once, until tender-crisp, about 4 minutes. Let them cool slightly, then peel, slice and grill as directed.

Transfer sweet potatoes to rimmed baking sheet. Brush with 2 tsp (10 ml) of the oil; sprinkle with thyme and half each of the salt and pepper. Set aside.

Meanwhile, stir together grainy mustard, hot mustard, honey and garlic; set aside.

In bowl, toss pork with onion, 1 tbsp (15 ml) of the mustard mixture and the remaining oil, salt and pepper. Alternating pork and onion, thread onto metal or soaked wooden skewers.

Place skewers and sweet potatoes on greased grill over medium-high heat; close lid and grill, turning once and brushing skewers with remaining mustard mixture, until potatoes are tender and juices run clear when pork is pierced, about 10 minutes. Serves 4.

From Canadian Living

In this yummy dish from Canadian Living, quinoa is tossed with a spicy peanut dressing and topped with cooked shrimp, veggies, greens and garnishes. For more heat, add a hot chili.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used tamari instead of soy sauce and Simply Natural sriracha instead of the chili paste. Look for frozen shrimp with just salt as a preservative.

Make the spicy peanut dressing

Stir fry the shrimp

Assemble the vegetables

Cook the quinoa and toss with some of the dressing

Peanut shrimp crunch bowls

Ingredients:

Spicy peanut dressing

1/3 cup (85 ml) natural peanut butter

3 tablespoons (45 ml) white vinegar

4 teaspoons (20 ml) sodium-reduced soy sauce

4 teaspoons (20 ml) Asian chili paste (such as sambal oelek)

¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) each salt and pepper

Bowls

1 cup (250 ml) red quinoa , rinsed

2 teaspoons (10 ml) canola oil

400 g (14 oz) large shrimp (31 to 40 count), peeled and deveined

¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) each salt and pepper

8 cups (2 L) baby kale

2 cups (500 ml) snow peas , trimmed and halved diagonally

1 carrot , julienned

1/3 cup (85 ml) sliced red onion

½ cup (125 ml) cilantro sprigs

1/3 cup (85 ml) unsalted roasted peanuts , chopped

1 red Thai bird’s-eye pepper , sliced (optional)

4 lime wedges

Preparation:

Spicy peanut dressing

In bowl, whisk together peanut butter, vinegar, soy sauce, chili paste, salt, pepper and 1/3 cup (85 ml) water; set aside.

Bowls

In saucepan, cook quinoa according to package directions; fluff with fork.

In large nonstick skillet, heat oil over high heat; working in batches, cook shrimp, salt and pepper, stirring, until shrimp are pink and opaque throughout, 2 to 3 minutes.

Stir 1/3 cup (85 m.) of the Spicy Peanut Dressing into quinoa. Divide quinoa, shrimp, kale, snow peas, carrot and red onion among 4 bowls; drizzle each with 2 tbsp (30 ml) of the remaining Spicy Peanut Dressing. Sprinkle with cilantro, peanuts and Thai pepper (if using); serve with lime wedges. Serves 4.

From Canadian Living

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