Cooking Club: Week 34

Hey hey. Maybe you are starting or finishing spring break, or celebrating Passover, or getting ready for an Easter brunch, or just getting through the week. I tried to include something for everyone this week! The macaroons are a shareable holiday treat, the panzanella is so lovely to look at, and that sushi salad keeps well in the fridge so lunches can be ready in advance. And look at that turkey burger! Something about an English muffin bun just makes it feel lighter and that one was for sure my kids’ favorite this week.

Have a good one and don’t hesitate with questions! xo

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News:

- We updated the Sauces & Dressings page, and renamed it as the Condiment Index, with a few new non-dressing & sauce requests, including the quick pickled onions, spicy maple pepitas, and the green tahini sauce.

- Comments, questions or suggestions? Submit your feedback here.


groceries

I am assuming you have sea salt, pepper, extra virgin olive oil and a higher heat oil, such as avocado oil or coconut oil. Check your stock on these before you head to the market, and check off any other items you may already have. As you continue to use these recipes, you will see repetition of my favorite ingredients. For example, while real maple and pine nuts are pricey pantry staples, they won’t sit in the pantry, you’ll use them in upcoming weeks. Use bulk bins at your local health food store to buy in smaller quantities if you prefer.

Your List i

springy panzanella w/ green sauce sushi salad mediterranean turkey burgers chocolate dipped macaroons

produce

pantry

meat & dairy


recipe 01: springy panzanella w/ green sauce

serves 4

Panzanella is supposed to mean “bread salad,” but I suppose this is more of a green salad with croutons? Either way. It’s delicious and quite pretty for company, if I do say so myself. 

This will make way more sauce than you need for the Panzanella but it’s so nice to have on hand for marinating chicken, using as salad dressing, or mashing in with avocado for a sandwich. 

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Tips of The Week

Make Ahead: The sauce can be made up to a week in advance.

Use it Twice: We used this a super close version of this sauce as a pizza base a few weeks ago, but it’s great on eggs or as a chicken or fish marinade or dipping sauce.

Kid Friendly: I mean, croutons! But mine would still complain, so I separate the bits in different sections.

Dairy Free: Use a dairy-free option like Kite Hill swooped on the bottom. You could also skip the cheese and add another fat like toasted nuts or torn green olives.

Carnivore Addition: Panzanella is often a side, but shredded chicken can be tossed in or even some crispy prosciutto here.


Ingredients
 

FOR THE HERB SAUCE

2 cups fresh basil, chopped 
1 small bunch fresh parsley, chopped
2 Tbsp. minced shallot
Zest + juice of one small lemon
1/3 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
1 tsp. sea salt
1 jalapeño, seeds or no seeds to taste
1 small anchovy, optional


for the croutons

sourdough loaf, torn into 1” pieces
2 Tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp. sea salt
Fresh ground pepper

for the salad

Extra virgin olive oil
1 large leek, cleaned, dark green removed
1/2 lb. asparagus, ends removed
1/2 cup peas, fresh or frozen
1/4 cup mint leaves, roughly chopped
1 large handful of arugula
3 radish, sliced paper thin, optional
Sea salt
Fresh ground pepper

for serving

1 cup (8 oz.) whole milk ricotta
lemon zest

Instructions

Make the green sauce. Put all ingredients in a food processor or blender and pulse until roughly smooth. Set aside. 

Make your croutons. Preheat the oven to 400’. Put the torn bread on a rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle on the oil, pinch of salt and pepper, and toss everything to coat. Bake the croutons about 15 minutes, tossing halfway through. Cool to a crisp.

Heat a generous drizzle of olive oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Trim the leeks into half-moons and chop the trimmed asparagus into two-inch-long pieces. Once the pan is warm, add the leeks and sauté a minute. Add the asparagus, a pinch of salt and sauté another minute. Add the peas, and sauté two more minutes. Turn off the heat and set aside to cool. 

Into a mixing bowl, combine the cooled vegetables with the mint, arugula, and shaved radishes. Spoon in a few dollops of the Green Sauce in the bowl and toss to coat. Add the croutons and toss again. 

Put a big swoop of ricotta at the bottom of the bowl and drizzle a little more Green Sauce on top. Top it with the panzanella. 

Can be served chilled or at room temperature. 

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    535
  • fat i
    34 g
  • carbs i
    43 g
  • protein
    17 g

recipe 02: sushi salad

serves 4

Simple, yes, and completely open to your choice of protein. The shrimp from those citrus bowls could be tossed in here, or mini roasted tofu bits would work. 

I have this trusty julienne peeler, but you can also purchase the carrots already prepped like this if you’d like. 

I buy pickled ginger at the sushi stand at our local grocery store. You can sometimes find it with refrigerated Asian ingredients (tofu, miso etc.) or at a sushi restaurant. You could make it yourself if you are up for a project. 

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Tips of The Week

Make Ahead: The rice can be made in advance. The dressing can be combined in advance.

Use it Twice: This salad saves well, so pack it up for lunch the next day, or stretch it with some shredded cabbage.

Kid Friendly: rice, avocado, cucumbers etc.

Carnivore Addition: You could add cooked shrimp or salmon, or chunks of sushi grade ahi if you can get your hands on some.



 Ingredients

FOR THE DRESSING

2 Tbsp. toasted sesame oil
2 Tbsp. rice wine vinegar
2 Tbsp. soy sauce or tamari
1 tsp. honey
2 cloves of garlic, grated in
Pinch of red pepper flakes (if you have wasabi, go for it!)
Salt and pepper

for the salad

2 cups cooked and cooled short grain brown rice
1 cup edamame beans, cooked
1 small English cucumber, shaved thin
2 carrots, peeled, cut in thin matchsticks or julienned
1 bundle cilantro, roughly chopped
2 Tbsp. toasted sesame seeds
1 small package snacking roasted seaweed, cut in strips or crumbled
2 avocados, sliced

for serving

Pickled ginger

Instructions

Put all dressing ingredients in a jar and shake them up. Set aside. 

In a large bowl, combine the rice, edamame, cucumber, carrots, cilantro, and sesame seeds. Pour the dressing on top and toss everything to coat.

Garnish the top with avocado and the roasted seaweed. Add any desired protein such as a seared ahi or citrus shrimp.

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    421
  • fat i
    26 g
  • carbs i
    42 g
  • protein
    10 g

recipe 03: Mediterranean turkey burgers

serves 4

Burgers and sandwiches are family-favorites here as they are easy to customize to taste. You could get more enthusiastic about the add-ons, maybe sliced cucumbers or even olive tapenade if you want two spreads? Go crazy. 

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Tips of The Week

Make Ahead: The burger mixture and feta spread can both be made 1-2 days in advance.

Use it Twice: The meat mixture can also be baked into small meatballs (add an egg and a bit of breadcrumbs to help them stay together). The feta spread can be used on another sandwich.

Kid Friendly: The sun-dried tomato flavor can be strong, but chop them super fine and I think these will pass. Maybe skip the raw red onion.

Vegetarian Swap: Use large portobello mushrooms that have a quick marinade of oil, balsamic, salt and the dried oregano. You can add the sun-dried tomatoes to the spread, or just tangle them up in the greens and onions.

Low Carb: Lettuce wrap that baby.


 Ingredients

FOR THE BURGERS

1/3 cup well chopped parsley
1 small shallot, minced (about 2 Tbsp.)
1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, oil-packed
1/2 tsp. dried oregano
Dash of cayenne, to taste
1/2 tsp. sea salt
fresh ground pepper
1 lb. ground dark meat turkey

FOR THE FETA SPREAD

1/3 cup mayonnaise
2 ounces feta cheese, room temp
1 large clove of garlic, grated
zest of one lemon
2 tsp. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. finely chopped mint
fresh ground pepper

for serving

2 cups arugula
1/2 of a small red onion, sliced thin
Beefsteak tomato, sliced, for serving, optional
4 English muffins

instructions

Make the burger mixture. If using dry, sun-dried tomatoes, give them a quick soak in warm water. If you are using oil-packed, continue on. Combine the parsley, shallot, chopped sun dried tomatoes, oregano, cayenne, salt and pepper and stir to combine. Add the ground turkey and fold the add-in’s, in. Set aside. This can be done in advance. 

Heat your grill, or grill pan, to medium high heat. 

For the feta spread, put the mayo and feta in a bowl. Use the back of a spoon to smash the feta into the mayo. Small chunks are fine, we just want to distribute it. Add the grated garlic, lemon zest and juice, fresh mint, and pepper. Set aside. This can be made a day in advance. 

Form the turkey mixture into four patties, about 1/2” thick. Brush a bit of oil on the outsides and grill them for about 4-5 minutes per side until completely cooked through. Warm the buns on the grill in the last minute. Arrange each bun with a generous swipe of the spread, the patty, some arugula, red onion and tomato if using. 

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    495
  • fat i
    26 g
  • carbs i
    35 g
  • protein
    33 g

recipe 04: chocolate dipped macaroons

Makes 15 macaroons

Some people like a dash of almond extract in their macaroons, but I’ll leave that up to you. Add a tablespoon of cocoa powder to the mixture for a gentle nudge of chocolate, but I like a full bottom dip. 

I intended to be more Easter and Passover friendly this week so hope this helps! 

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Tips of The Week

Make Ahead: The wet mixture can be made a day in advance. Coconut is very absorbent, so add that just before baking.

Kid Friendly: Make them mini and even non-chocolate dipped and these are not overloaded with sugar.

Dairy Free: sub the butter with a non-dairy substitute and use a sweetened condensed coconut milk (I have seen it at Sprouts, Whole Foods and online).


Ingredients

1 egg
1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. sea salt
8 oz. bag shredded, unsweetened coconut (about 3 cups)
7 oz. dark chocolate
1 tsp. coconut oil


Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350’ and line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment or a silicone baking mat. 

Whisk the egg, sweetened condensed milk, melted butter, vanilla (and almond extract if using) and sea salt in a large bowl until combined. Stir in the shredded coconut. Scoop them into 2 Tbsp. size balls onto a baking sheet. Bake on the middle rack for 18 +/-minutes until the outer edges are crisped but the center is still tender.

Allow the macaroons to cool completely. While they cool, melt the chocolate and coconut oil in a small bowl over a pot of simmering water. Stir occasionally until the chocolate is melted and smooth. Dip the bottoms of each macaroon into the chocolate bath, then place them upside down on the baking tray to cool. You could also drizzle on top. 

Macaroons are best within a day or two. Keep them in an airtight container but be aware they will lose their crisp the longer they sit. 

Nutrition Information

per serving

  • calories
    246
  • fat i
    20 g
  • carbs i
    15 g
  • protein
    3 g