Summer

A Simple Summer Pasta

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by Evan Kleiman

Pasta-RicottaA simple pasta is a life saver. How many nights are you rescued from eating out of a box just because you know how to throw together a good simple pasta? First tip: Don’t just rely on tomato sauce to coat the pasta. I love good sweet, milky ricotta and when I’m at a store where I can find it I tend to go overboard and buy a bit too much. So it’s ricotta on toast for breakfast, ricotta with fruit for lunch and ricotta as the “sauce” for a quick seasonal pasta.

In this dish I started with ricotta, then saw I had some pesto, added a couple of tablespoons of that, then added some crunchy sweet baby tomatoes and slices of green onion. While I was waiting for my pasta water to boil I discovered a couple of tiny zucchini with flowers attached and an ear of corn that needed to be used up. So I cut the niblets off the corn, sliced the zucchini in half lengthwise and shredded the flowers with my fingers.

Easy Summer Salsa Verde

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by James Moore

salsaverdeSalsa Verde makes a perfect dip during the summer and also adds a refreshing burst of flavor to all type of dishes. It is a great marinade and topping for grilled fish, seafood, chicken, beef, and lamb.

Some recipes call for boiling the tomatillos, but roasting adds more flavor to the sauce and is worth the extra step.

When selecting tomatillos, always slightly open the husk to inspect the flesh color and tone inside. The flesh should be firm and without major blemishes and the color should be bright green, with a fresh, fruity smell.

Summer Quenchers: The Lemonade Variations

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by Jessica Harper

Lemonade22240I’ve got this Meyer lemon tree in my yard that is dripping with fruit. With a sudden burst of culinary energy (for some reason I’m channeling Rachael Ray) I am doing a lemon project this week, finally committed to using my harvest for something other than dog toys.

First, of course, I made lemonade. While I have often advised my kids (much to their irritation) to make lemonade out of lemons, I have rarely taken that advice myself, at least not literally. I had no idea how much sugar is in the stuff. No wonder it’s so addictive. Best rush since the Easter egg hunt.

I decided to make a couple of lemonade variations that would cut the sugar and add interest. Voila: Chamomile Arnold Palmers and Cucumber Mint Lemonade. Love that basic Meyer Lemonade, but if the sugar has you bouncing like a pinball, try one of its slightly less sweet cousins.

Recipe of the Week: Grilled French Dip Brisket Burger with Jim Beam Black® Bourbon Onions

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by The Editors

GrilledDipBurgerOmahaSteaksThis tasty burger recipe is nothing short of perfection. Gourmet Omaha Steaks Burgers are loaded with caramelized Jim Beam Black® Bourbon Onions that are so good your mouth will water before each savory bite. Top them off with melty brie cheese and a little mayo, then serve with a cup of warmed beef au jus for a blissful recipe that's sure to be a memorable hit at your next get-together!

Recipe courtesy of Omaha Steaks Executive Chef Karl Marsh

INGREDIENTS:

4 Omaha Steaks New Brisket Burgers
4 square ciabatta sandwich buns
1 tablespoon mayonnaise
6 ounces brie cheese, sliced
1 cup Jim Beam Black® Bourbon Onions
2 cup Beef Au Jus*, warmed

Cool as a Cute Little Cucumber Gazpacho!

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by Annie Stein

placesettingIsn’t it great to be blessed with friends who entertain beautifully, who attend to every detail, artistically, with care and flare? Friends who take pleasure in delighting with beauty and richness?

I am one lucky ducky in this department for sure. Most of my friends enjoy setting a pretty table and “doing the flowers” as I call decorating when having guests over for a meal. A couple of my peeps, though, are off the charts in this department which causes me to spend most of my time wandering around their house saying “wow I love that,” like I haven’t read a newspaper in weeks and have nothing else to say for myself, or like a gal from East Podunk, straight off the farm, who’s never seen a formal place setting before let alone matching salt and pepper shakers. Or someone in awe of people who create beauty and inspire me by the things they think of and do. Please say the latter.

One would expect our friends Heidi and Guy to have a great house. She’s been selling prime LA real estate for 25 years, and he is the proprietor of Ligne Roset Los Angeles, the go-to store for architectural furniture. Ten years ago Heidi and Guy combined tastes, talents and 3 young teens and moved into a sprawling and spacious Spanish, Mission- style house in a canyon with a never ending view of LA’s immense valley. Guy is almost apologetic in sharing in his off the cuff, just between us, way that the style of the house, the architecture, is not really him so much, (like any of us who know him and his exquisite design sense need to be told), but the interior and over all vibe of the house is so him and Heidi in all of their beauty, creativity and warmth; the art, furniture and fabrics, the two gorgeous greyhounds, the family photos taking up a whole wall in the kitchen juxtaposed with the Chanel Houndstooth fabric on the family room couch.

Dawn Sibor's Summer Seafood Salad

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by Kitty Kaufman

seafoodsaladWe live in Boston. To get ourselves through winters that go from November to May, we hold dear dreaming of warm weather. Any restaurant with two feet of sidewalk sets out tables in March. They say it's to be ready for baseball season. This is wishful thinking since there are no home games until well into April. Snow plows don't disappear until May. Still.

When we think warm weather, we want fish. We get fish all year but somehow the best time for shellfish is summer. Lobster, shrimp, crabmeat, clams and oysters are at their best when we want them most. Here's a seafood recipe with lobster, shrimp and crab that brings summer to the kitchen full blast. It goes equally well at cookouts and air-conditioned dinner parties.

Coconut Ice Cream with Honey-Lime Strawberries

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by Cathy Pollak

coconuticecreamHomemade ice cream is a great tradition for the Fourth of July. Undoubtedly it hits the spot on a hot summer day. And we all know store bought ice cream is nothing compared to homemade.

When I was sixteen I discovered my love of coconut frozen yogurt. Penguin’s Frozen Yogurt moved into my town and were looking for a bunch of teenagers to hire. It was a chain that was growing by leaps and bounds due to their popularity. After three…long…interviews I was hired. Can you believe three interviews for a job at a frozen yogurt place? Sheesh.

Anyway, coconut was a flavor we had maybe once a month. I loved it and it was all I would eat for the few days we had it. Since then I always seek out coconut ice cream…I never see it anywhere as coconut frozen yogurt…which is okay by me! I prefer ice cream.

So this ice cream…wow. Wow. Wow. It really is the best and there are so many possibilities of toppings, it make me dizzy just thinking about all of them.

Grilled Buttery Chicken Skewers with Crazy Sauce

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by Cathy Pollak

Grilled-Buttery-ChickenSummer makes me want to grill everything, it makes dinner so simple to execute. Picking a protein is the biggest decision. Once that's settled it's easy street.

And I have been cheating a little. I have been using my new indoor grill, which I love. I mean I really love the thing. It's so easy to use and sits right on my counter top. I can't help but throw everything on there. My kids have been poking a little fun at my new grill obsession. I can't help it.

One of my favorite grill uses has been for appetizers. We had some friends over the other evening and I made these chicken skewers with my crazy sauce for dipping. I love everyone sitting at my kitchen bar, while I grill away. So easy and fun and feels very interactive. 

The chicken turned out great. I used tenderloins instead of breasts, they stay much juicier and are really easy to cut up into pieces. Have no fear if you don't own an indoor grill, you can easily make these on a grill pan made for the stove, or on a real outdoor grill.

Berry Me

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by Jessica Harper

Berries-225x300I went to the Farmers’ Market on Saturday and I believe I snapped. I bought so many berries, the berry guy can send his daughter to college on his profits.

I bought so many berries I got a flat tire on the way home. I bought so many berries I really have no option but to make several desserts and possibly some jam.

Luckily this recipe uses a lot of berries and is quite delicious. I made it on Saturday, then blueberry muffins on Sunday and I have a waiting list of berry recipes for this week. (I’ll keep you posted.)

My apron looks like a Jackson Pollock paining, his blue/red period.

Strawberry Avocado Summer Salad

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by James Moore

strawberrryavocadosaladSweet summer strawberries at their peak flavor combine with the buttery creaminess of ripe avocados to deliver one stunning salad. Just toss it all together with a simple lemon vinaigrette for a great seasonal salad.

Simple Lemon Vinaigrette

1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest plus 3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
1/2 teaspoon mayonnaise
Salt and pepper
Pinch cayenne
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

 

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