Archive for February, 2019

This recipe from Ina Garten’s new cookbook Cook Like a Pro, is based on the farro salad served at New York City’s Charlie Bird restaurant. Farro is cooked in apple juice or cider, then tossed with a lemony vinaigrette, pistachios, parsley, mint, tomatoes and radishes. Delicious!

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used pure apple juice instead of cider. Be sure to use freshly squeezed lemon juice, genuine Parmesan cheese that does not contain additives and pistachios with no colour or preservatives added.

This salad contains arugula, herbs, tomatoes, radishes and pistachios.

Toss the cooked farro with the vinaigrette and let stand for 15 minutes.

Charlie Bird's Farro Salad

Ingredients:

1 cup (250 ml) pearled farro (6 ounces/170 g)

1 cup (250 ml) fresh apple cider

2 bay leaves

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

½ cup (125 ml) good olive oil

¼ cup (60 ml) freshly squeezed lemon juice

½ cup (125 ml) roasted, salted pistachios, whole or chopped

1 cup (250 ml) roughly chopped fresh parsley

1 cup (250 ml) roughly chopped fresh mint leaves

1 cup (250 ml) cherry or grape tomatoes, halved through the stem

1/3 cup (85 ml) thinly sliced radishes (2 to 3 radishes)

2 cups (500 ml) baby arugula

½ cup (125 ml) shaved Italian Parmesan cheese

Flaked sea salt, such as Maldon

Preparation:

Place the farro, apple cider, bay leaves, 2 teaspoons (10 ml) salt, and 2 cups (500 ml) water in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, lower the heat, and simmer uncovered for about 30 minutes, until the farro is tender. (If all the liquid is absorbed before the farro is tender, add a little more water.)

Drain the farro and transfer to a large serving bowl. Discard the bay leaves.

Meanwhile, in a small measuring cup, whisk together the olive oil, lemon juice, 1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt, and ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) pepper. Stir the vinaigrette into the warm farro and set aside for at least 15 minutes to cool. Before serving, stir in the pistachios, parsley, mint, tomatoes, and radishes.

Add the arugula and lightly fold in the Parmesan so as not to break it up too much. Sprinkle with the sea salt and serve immediately. Serves 6.

From Cook Like a Pro by the Barefoot Contessa

This is a delicious recipe from Food and Wine that combines spicy beef with fresh greens and herbs. The ingredient list may seem long, but the dish comes together quickly once you have everything ready to go.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I have never been able to find additive-free oyster sauce, so I make my own. The recipe is below. Use tamari instead of soy sauce because it contains alcohol as a preservative instead of sodium benzoate. I use Cock brand fish sauce and Marukan rice vinegar.

Marinate beef for 20 minutes

Combine salad ingredients

Sear the beef quickly

Shaking Beef

Ingredients:

Oyster Sauce

1 ½ tablespoons (25 ml) soy sauce

1 tablespoon (15 ml) sugar

1 ½ teaspoons (7 ml) cornstarch

Beef

1 ½  tablespoons (25 ml) oyster sauce, plus more to taste

1 tablespoon (15 ml) soy sauce

1 ½ teaspoons (7.5 ml) granulated sugar

1 ½ teaspoons (7.5 ml) cornstarch

1 teaspoon (5 ml) fish sauce

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) freshly ground black pepper

2 garlic cloves, smashed

1 ½ pounds (680 g) boneless rib eye steak or New York strip steak, trimmed and cut into ¾ – to 1-inch pieces (1.9- to 2.5-cm)

Salad

¼ cup (60 ml) thinly sliced red onion or shallot

2 tablespoons (30 ml) water

1 ½ tablespoons (25 ml) unseasoned rice vinegar

1 ½ teaspoons (7.5 ml) granulated sugar or honey

1/8 teaspoon (0.65 ml)  fine sea salt

1/8 teaspoon (0.65 ml) freshly ground black pepper

4 cups (1 L) lightly packed watercress, baby arugula, or other salad greens

1 cup (250 ml) torn radicchio or 8 halved cherry tomatoes

¼ cup (60 ml) fresh mint, basil, or other herb leaves, torn

2 tablespoons (30 ml) canola oil or other neutral oil (such as grapeseed)

Preparation:

Make the oyster sauce

Combine all ingredients in a small bowl.

Make the beef

Stir together oyster sauce, soy sauce, sugar, cornstarch, fish sauce, pepper, and garlic in a medium bowl. If a saltier finish is desired, add up to 1 ½ teaspoons (7.5 ml) more oyster sauce. Add beef, toss well to coat, and let marinate 20 minutes at room temperature.

Make the salad

Rinse onions in a strainer under cold running water for about 10 seconds; set aside. Whisk together 2 tablespoons (30 ml) water, vinegar, sugar, salt, and pepper in a large bowl until sugar is dissolved. Add onion; top with watercress, radicchio, and herbs. Do not toss.

Heat a large, heavy skillet over high, and add oil. When oil is shimmering, carefully add beef in a single layer. Cook, shaking pan every 30 to 60 seconds, until seared on all sides and meat reaches desired degree of doneness, 3 to 4 minutes for medium-rare. Remove from heat. Quickly toss salad, and transfer to a platter or serving dish. Pile cooked beef and juices on salad, and serve immediately. Serves 4.

From Food and Wine