Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Broiled Salmon with Herb Mustard Glaze

Prep Time: 7 min
Level: Easy
Yield: 6 servings


2 garlic cloves
3/4 teaspoon finely chopped fresh rosemary leaves
3/4 teaspoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 tablespoon dry white wine
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
Nonstick olive oil cooking spray
6 (6 to 8-ounce) salmon fillets
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6 lemon wedges


In a mini food processor, combine garlic, rosemary, thyme, wine, oil, Dijon mustard, and 1 tablespoon of whole-grain mustard. Grind the mustard sauce until combined, about 30 seconds. Transfer to a small bowl. Add remaining 1 tablespoon of whole-grain mustard to the sauce and stir to combine. Set aside mustard sauce.

Preheat the broiler. Line a heavy rimmed baking sheet with foil. Spray the foil with nonstick spray. Arrange the salmon fillets on the baking sheet and sprinkle them with salt and pepper. Broil for 2 minutes. Spoon the mustard sauce over the fillets. Continue broiling until the fillets are just cooked through and golden brown, about 5 minutes longer.

Transfer the fillets to plates and serve with lemon wedges.


Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Holiday Salad

Prep Time: 15 min
Level: Easy
Yield: 4 servings


2 lemons, juiced, plus 1/2 lemon
1 teaspoon sea salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
5 medium heads Belgian endive, ends trimmed and cut into 1-inch circles
1 medium green apple, peeled, cored, and cut into 1-inch cubes
1/4 pound Gruyere cheese, rind removed and diced into 1-inch cubes
1/2 avocado, diced into 1-inch cubes
2 tablespoons dried cranberries, or the seeds of 1 small pomegranate
2/3 cup defrosted corn kernels or 1/2 ear corn, cooked and kernels removed


In a small bowl whisk together the lemon juice, salt, pepper and olive oil. Set aside.

Put the endive and apples into a large decorative serving bowl. Squeeze the juice of half a lemon into the bowl and toss to coat the endive and apples so they don't turn brown. Add the cheese and avocado, and then add the cranberries and corn.

Pour the dressing over the salad just before serving and toss to coat.


Sunday, December 6, 2009

Holiday Biscotti

Garnish with red and green sugar crystals to match the holiday colors! :)

Cook Time: 55 min
Level: Easy
Yield: 2 dozens


2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
3/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 teaspoon grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup pistachios, coarsely chopped
2/3 cup dried cranberries
12 ounces good-quality white chocolate, chopped
Red and green sugar crystals, for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

Line a heavy large baking sheet with parchment paper. Whisk the flour and baking powder in a medium bowl to blend. Using an electric mixer, beat the sugar, butter, lemon zest, and salt in a large bowl to blend. Beat in the eggs 1 at a time. Add the flour mixture and beat just until blended. Stir in the pistachios and cranberries.

Form the dough into a 13-inch long, 3-inch wide log on the prepared baking sheet. Bake until light golden, about 40 minutes. Cool for 30 minutes.

Place the log on the cutting board. Using a sharp serrated knife, cut the log on a diagonal into 1/2 to 3/4-inch-thick slices. Arrange the biscotti, cut side down, on the baking sheet. Bake the biscotti until they are pale golden, about 15 minutes. Transfer the biscotti to a rack and cool completely.

Stir the chocolate in a bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water until the chocolate melts. Dip half of the biscotti into the melted chocolate. Gently shake off the excess chocolate. Place the biscotti on the baking sheet for the chocolate to set. Sprinkle with the sugar crystals. Refrigerate until the chocolate is firm, about 35 minutes.

The biscotti can be made ahead. Store them in an airtight container up to 4 days, or wrap them in foil and freeze in resealable plastic bags up to 3 weeks.


Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Dried Cherry and Almond Cookies with Vanilla Icing

Time: 15 min
Level: Intermediate
Yield: 24 cookies



* 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
* 1/2 cup, plus 2 tablespoons sugar
* 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
* 1/2 teaspoon pure almond extract
* 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
* 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
* 1 large egg
* 1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
* 3/4 cup coarsely chopped dried tart cherries (see Cook's Note)
* 1/2 cup slivered, blanched almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped (see Cook's Note)


* 2 3/4 cups powdered sugar, sifted
* 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
* 3 tablespoons water, plus extra, as needed


For the Cookies:

In a large bowl, with an electric mixer, beat the butter, sugar, vanilla extract, almond extract, cinnamon, and salt until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes, then beat in the egg. Add the flour and beat on the lowest speed until just blended. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the dried cherries and almonds.

Transfer the dough to a sheet of plastic wrap and shape it into a log, about 12-inches long and 1 1/2-inches in diameter. Wrap the dough in the plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. (Dough can be made up to 3 days in advance).

Arrange an oven rack in the center of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line 2 heavy baking sheets with parchment paper.

Cut the log crosswise into 1/2-inch thick slices. Transfer the dough slices to the prepared baking sheets, spacing them about 1-inch apart. Bake until the cookies are golden around the edges and puffed, about 15 minutes. Transfer the cookies to a wire rack to cool completely before icing, about 30 minutes.

For the Icing:

Put the powdered sugar in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in the vanilla extract and water, adding more water, 1 teaspoon at a time, until the mixture becomes a drizzling consistency. (Makes about 2/3 cups icing, enough to ice both variations.)

Put the cooled cookies on a wire rack set over a baking sheet. Using a spoon or a fork, drizzle the cookies with the icing, allowing any excess icing to drip onto the baking sheet. Allow the icing to set before serving, about 1 hour.

Cook's Note: To toast the almonds, arrange them in a single layer on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350 degree F oven for 6 to 8 minutes until lightly toasted. Cool completely before using.

Cook's Note Alternative:

Replace the dried cherries with 1/2 cup coarsely chopped dried apricots and add 2 tablespoons of toasted pine nuts. Also, use 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and omit the almond extract.