Make dinner tonight, inspired!

Wondering what to make for dinner tonight? This is your place for quick and healthy meal inspirations. Here you'll find recipes for seasonally focused dinners, desserts, breakfasts, and everything in between.

My cooking focuses on the freshest ingredients prepared in a simple and careful way, to highlight their uniqueness. My own diet is primarily vegetarian, but does include sustainable fish and seafood, and is gluten free.

Thank you for reading. I look forward to sharing some of my favorite recipes with you!

07 February 2010

Super Bowl snacks... my way

We're not much into football at my house. In fact I don't really know the first thing about football so I find the whole game watching thing rather boring and confusing. But, I do enjoy any opportunity to get together with friends and prepare and share food. 

So, this year I thought I'd make a few simple and elegant snacks to enjoy while watching the game, or any other time for that matter. I was inspired after watching a cooking demo yesterday with the fabulous Eric Ripert and came up with a few easy snacks 'ala Eric' for today's game. 

As you might guess I don't much go for the usual Super Bowl fare like wings & nachos. On 'Le Menu' today will be three easy spreads to serve with toasted baguette, crackers, or crudite including herbed goat cheese, smoked salmon 'rillettes' and a spicy limey guacamole. We're also having gougeres and sparkling wine and a few other yummy nibbles which I'm sure will make an appearance on Dinner Tonight in the coming days/weeks.

Hopefully you'll give these a try for your next game day get together or any other day that calls for some yummy nibbles.

For the Herbed Goat Cheese Spread:
5 oz fresh plain Chevre, at room temperature
zest of 1/2 lemon, minced
1 tsp fresh Thyme, chopped
1 tsp fresh Oregano or Majoram, chopped
1 tsp fresh Rosemary, chopped
sea salt & pepper to taste
1 TB fresh lemon juice
1 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1) In a small bowl, combine the room temperature goat cheese with the lemon zest and herbs. Season with salt & pepper. Stir in lemon juice and Olive Oil to reach a spreadable consistency. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

For the Guacamole:
2 ripe Haas Avocados
juice and zest of 1 lime
1/2- 1 medium Jalapeno, depending how spicy you like it, minced
2 medium scallions, white and light green parts only, chopped fine
sea salt & black pepper to taste
1 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil

1) In a small bowl, mash the Avocado coarsely. You want this to be a chunky guacamole, not one of those liquidy, soupy ones. Add the lime juice and zest and stir to combine. Adding the lime juice to the Avocado before any of the other ingredients will help to keep the Avocado from oxidizing.

2) Add the Jalapeno, Scallions, sea salt & black pepper to taste. Mix in the Olive Oil. Store in the refrigerator with plastic wrap pressed directly onto the surface as well as over the top of the bowl until ready to serve.

For the Salmon Rillettes:
6 oz fresh wild Salmon, thinly sliced
2 oz Smoked Salmon, chopped fine
1 cup dry white wine
3 oz Creme Fraiche (or sour cream)
1 medium bunch chives, finely chopped
zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
sea salt & black pepper to taste

1) In a shallow saute pan, heat the white wine until just simmering. Add the fresh salmon and gently poach, about 1-2 minutes per side, until just barely cooked through. Remove from the wine and drain on paper towels. When cool enough to handle, chop the salmon finely.

2) In a small bowl, combine the chopped poached salmon, the chopped smoked salmon, the scallions, chives, lemon zest, and Creme Fraiche. Stir together to combine. Add the lemon juice, salt & peper to taste. Adjust the consistency as needed with a drizzle of Olive Oil, just before serving. Store covered in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

For the Toasted Baguette & Crudite:
1 french Baguette or seeded Baguette, thinly sliced on the bias
2 TB Extra Virgin Olive Oil
coarse sea salt
peeled and quartered carrots & celery
radishes, jicama, cherry tomatoes....whatever other raw veggies you enjoy

1) Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Place the bread on a sheet pan, brush with olive oil, sprinkle with salt, and cook 6-8 minutes until golden and crunchy. Serve alongside your spreads and the crudite. 


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