Strawberry Mojitos

Ingredients                                                                                                Strawberry Mojitos

  • white sugar for rimming glasses
  • ½ bunch mint
  • 1 cup sugar (I tend to use less)
  • 2 cups club soda
  • 2 large limes, quartered
  • 7 strawberries, quartered
  • 1 cup white rum
  • ice cubes for serving

Rub the glass rims with one of the lime quarters, then dip them in sugar. Set aside.

Squeeze lime quarters into a wide-mouthed pitcher, and toss in the juiced limes, rind and all. Add the mint leaves, strawberries and 1 cup sugar.

Using a muddler, or the back of a sturdy wooden spoon, muddle the mixture, smashing the mint leaves and strawberries together with the sugar.

Stir in the rum, and then the club soda, making sure that all the sugar is dissolved. Serve over ice in sugar-rimmed glasses.

Asian Burgers

Ingredients

This May 14, 2016 photo shows an Asian-flavored beef burger with chopped mushrooms in New Milford, Conn. The recipe includes Ponzu, a citrus-based sauce used often in Japanese cooking. (AP Photo/Katie Workman)

This May 14, 2016 photo shows an Asian-flavored beef burger with chopped mushrooms in New Milford, Conn. The recipe includes Ponzu, a citrus-based sauce used often in Japanese cooking. (AP Photo/Katie Workman)

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 lb shiitake or baby Portobello mushrooms, sliced
  • kosher or coarse salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 3 T ponzu sauce, plus more for brushing
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 t minced garlic
  • 4 t grated ginger
  • 2 lb ground beef
  • 6 hamburger buns
  • lettuce
  • sliced tomatoes
  • sliced onions
  • For the Wasabi Mayonnaise: (optional):
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 1 t wasabi paste, or to taste

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil. When hot, add the mushrooms to the skillet. Season with salt and pepper. Sauté until the mushrooms release any liquid and it evaporates, and the mushrooms begin to turn nicely browned, about 8 to 10 minutes in all. Transfer the mushrooms to a plate and cool to room temperature.

In a large bowl, combine the eggs, 3 tablespoons ponzu sauce, garlic and ginger. Finely chop the cooled mushrooms using a knife or by pulsing in the food processor, and then add them along with the beef to the bowl. Use your hands to gently mix until well combined.

Form the mixture into six patties, and use your thumbs to make slight indentations in the center of each burger. (That will cause them to end up flat when they cook.) Refrigerate the burgers for at least an hour, preferably two or three, to let them firm up. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise with the wasabi paste. Adjust the level of heat to your taste, adding more mayo or wasabi paste as needed. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

Preheat the grill to medium high. Grill the burgers for 4 to 5 minutes on each side, turning them carefully with a large spatula, until they are done to your liking.

Alternatively, heat a large, nonstick pan over medium high heat and sear the burgers 4 to 5 minutes on each side. Brush the tops lightly with the additional ponzu sauce. Serve on the buns (toasted if you wish) with the wasabi cream and anything else you like.

Chilled BLT Soup

Ingredients

This Thursday, July 21, 2016 photo shows chilled BLT soup in New York. This dish is from a recipe by Sara Moulton. (Sara Moulton via AP)

  • 3 lbs large tomatoes
  • kosher salt
  • 2 c ½-inch bread cubes
  • 3 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 slices bacon
  • 1 lb cherry tomatoes, quartered
  • 1 c mayonnaise
  • ½ t finely minced garlic
  • 1 t fresh lemon juice
  • 1 T sherry vinegar
  • black pepper
  • 1 c shredded romaine

The tomatoes in this recipe don’t need to be seeded or peeled. That’s because you’re going to puree them in a blender until smooth.

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

Core and cut the large tomatoes into 1/2-inch thick wedges. In a large bowl toss the wedges with 1 teaspoon salt and set them aside for 1 hour. (Salting concentrates the flavor).

Meanwhile, on a large rimmed sheet pan toss the bread cubes with 1 tablespoon olive oil until they are well coated. Sprinkle them very lightly with salt and toss again. Bake on the middle shelf of the oven until they are golden, 6 to 8 minutes. Set them aside to cool.

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, cook the bacon until it is crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer to paper towels to drain. When the bacon is cool, crumble it and set it aside.

In a strainer set over a bowl, toss the cherry tomatoes with ½ teaspoon salt and let them drain for 15 minutes. In a small bowl, combine the mayonnaise with the garlic, the lemon juice and 1 tablespoon of the tomato juice from the drained cherry tomatoes and stir well.

Working in batches, transfer the tomato wedges and their liquid to a blender and blend until very smooth. Transfer to a bowl, stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil, the sherry vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Add the cherry tomatoes and chill the soup until it is cold.

To serve: Spoon ¼ of the soup into each of the four soup bowls. Drizzle each portion with some of the mayonnaise and top with the bacon, the romaine and the croutons. Serves 4.

Recipe by Sara Moulton. Her latest cookbook is Home Cooking 101.

Caprese Salad with Crispy Prosciutto

 

This May 23, 2016 photo shows a caprese salad with crispy prosciutto, from a cookbook by swimsuit model Chrissy Teigen and styled by Sarah Abrams, at the Institute of Culinary Education in New York. Adapted by Elizabeth Karmel from Teigen 's "Cravings: Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat," the salad calls for tomatoes in different shapes and sizes - some slices, some wedges - served with arugla and crunchy, hammy, prosciutto crisps. (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

Ingredients

  • 4 cups baby arugula
  • 8-ounce ball burrata or fresh mozzarella cheese
  • 2 pounds assorted ripe tomatoes cut in a variety of shapes (wedges, slices, chunks, etc.)
  • 3 tablespoons best-quality olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 to 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions

Scatter the arugula on a serving platter and place the cheese in the center. Arrange the tomatoes around the cheese. Cut a small opening in the burrata/mozzarella ball so you can see the center, and then drizzle olive oil all around the platter. Drizzle balsamic vinegar on the tomatoes and arugula. Season the entire salad with the salt and pepper and top with the prosciutto crisps.

Prosciutto Crisps

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Arrange the prosciutto in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake until wrinkled and slightly shrunken, 11 to 13 minutes. (It will crisp as it cools.)  Cool, eat whole as a snack or crumble and use as a garnish for salads, eggs, or anything that could use crispness and ham.

Serves 6.

 

Zucchini Ribbon “Lasagna”

INGREDIENTS

FOR THE SAUCE (MAKES 3 CUPS)

  • 1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled plum tomatoes, with juice
  • 2 T extra-virgin olive oil

zucchini ribbon lasagna

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped (1 c)
  • 1/4 t red-pepper flakes
  • 12 oz ground turkey, preferably dark meat
  • 2 T chopped fresh oregano
  • 2 t coarse salt

FOR THE LASAGNA

  • 2 medium zucchini, trimmed
  • 1 c part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 t extra-virgin olive oil
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • Garnish: Fresh oregano

DIRECTIONS

  1. Make the sauce:  Pulse tomatoes with juice in a food processor until finely chopped. Heat oil in a large straight-sided skillet over medium heat. Cook onion and red-pepper flakes, stirring occasionally, until onion is tender, about 8 minutes. Add turkey; cook, breaking up any large pieces, until browned, 3 to 4 minutes. Add tomatoes; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer until thick, about 20 minutes. Stir in oregano and salt. Let cool.
  1. Make the lasagna:  Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Slice zucchini lengthwise into thin strips (about 1/8 inch thick) using a mandoline or a sharp knife. Place 5 or 6 zucchini slices, overlapping slightly, in the bottom of an 8-inch square baking dish. Top with 1 cup sauce. Dot with 1/4 cup ricotta. Repeat twice with zucchini, remaining sauce, and 1/2 cup ricotta, alternating direction of zucchini. Top with remaining zucchini, alternating direction; brush with oil. Dot with remaining 1/4 cup ricotta. Season with pepper. Bake, uncovered, until lasagna bubbles and top browns, 50 to 60 minutes. Let stand for 10 minutes. Garnish with oregano.

Sauteed Greens with White Beans and Garlic

Serves 6 to 8

Ingredients:                                                                                                    Sauteed Greens with Beans and Garlic

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
  • 1 1/2 pound mixed greens, trimmed and roughly chopped, such as escarole, curly endive, mustard greens, spinach, kale or broccoli rabe
  • 1 cup low-sodium chicken or vegetable broth
  • 2 (15-ounce) cans no-salt-added cannellini or other white beans, rinsed and drained
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

 

Method: 

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and pepper flakes and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Add greens (in batches, if needed), and cook, tossing often, until wilted and bright green, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a colander as done and drain well. Return skillet to heat.

Add broth to skillet and deglaze, scraping up any browned bits. Add beans and simmer until hot throughout, 2 to 3 minutes. Return greens to skillet, toss gently and season with salt and pepper.

Bake-Ahead Morning Egg Cups

Makes 12 servings.

  • 3 oz pork sausage                                                                         Baked Egg Cups
  • half a red pepper, chopped
  • 2 T chopped onion
  • 1 T flour (all purpose or rice flour both work)
  • 1½ c baby spinach or other cooking greens, washed
  • 2 eggs
  • ¾ c egg whites (about 7 egg whites)
  • ¼ c lowfat milk
  • ½ cup shredded sharp cheddar cheese

Directions
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a sauté pan, cook the sausage over medium high heat until no longer pink, about 5 minutes. Add the pepper and chopped onion and cook until vegetables begin to soften, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle with the flour and stir in.

Chop the spinach/greens and stir into the pan, and cook another minute for it to wilt. Remove from heat and allow to cool a few minutes. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, egg whites and milk until pale yellow and smooth. Stir in the sausage mixture and cheese.

Spray a 12-cup muffin tin with nonstick spray. Spoon the mixture into the tin. Bake until eggs are firm but not dry, about 15 minutes. Let cool in the muffin tins for 10 minutes before removing and allowing to cool on a baking rack.

Eat right away, or freeze in a resealable freezer bag. To microwave for breakfast: Wrap in a paper towel and heat on 70 percent heat until hot, about 90 seconds, depending on microwave strength.

(Food Network star Melissa d’Arabian is the author of the cookbook “Supermarket Healthy.”)

Loaded Pork Nachos

 

  • pork nachosabout 1-pound ground pork
  • 1 packet Old El Paso taco seasoning mix (original flavor)
  • pinch salt
  • bag of tortilla chips
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • 1 ripe avocado, sliced
  • 1 lime
  • shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • 1 bunch green onions, diced
  • 1 bunch of cilantro, shredded
  • 1 green pepper, diced
  • 1 can small black olives, halved
  • sour cream

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. In a large sauce pan, sprinkle a pinch of salt, then crumble the ground pork into small bits. Cook over medium heat, stirring regularly. Once the meat is browned, add in the packet of taco seasoning and stir until fully cooked.

In a 9-by-13-inch pan, spread a layer of tortilla chips. Sprinkle a light layer of shredded cheese over the chips and then add a second layer of chips. Add diced tomato, pepper and then the cooked meat.

Sprinkle diced green onions, shredded cilantro and halved black olives over the top in the amount desired.

Add another light layer of cheese, and bake in the oven for 15 minutes, or until the cheese slightly browns.

Squeeze fresh lime juice over the top just after taking the pan out of the oven. Serve with sliced avocado and sour cream.

Baked BBQ-Flavored Zucchini Chips

baked zucchini chips

Ingredients

2 teaspoons smoked paprika

1 teaspoon chipotle or ancho chili powder (or plain chili powder)

1 teaspoon brown sugar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 large zucchini

2 teaspoons olive oil

Directions

Preheat oven to 200 degrees. In a small bowl, stir together the smoked paprika, chili powder, brown sugar and salt and set aside. Slice the zucchini thinly, about one sixteenth of an inch, but not paper thin. You can use a mandolin, but slicing by hand is just fine. Don’t worry if you can’t quite get the slices super thin.

Place the zucchini slices in a large bowl, and blot with a paper towel to remove excess moisture. Drizzle with olive oil and toss the slices to coat. Sprinkle with the spice mixture and toss to coat. Line two or three large baking sheets with baking racks, and spray briefly with nonstick spray.

Spread out zucchini slices and bake until dry and slightly crispy, about two hours. Allow to cool on rack before removing. Best eaten the same day. Makes 4 servings.

NOTE: Instead of a baking rack, you may instead line the baking trays with parchment paper, in which case flip the chips about one hour into cooking, and note that chips will require about 30 extra minutes of bake time. (Food Network star Melissa d’Arabian is an expert on healthy eating on a budget. She is the author of the cookbook “Supermarket Healthy.”)

Lemony Green Bean Pasta Salad

Ingredients

  • 1/2 t sea salt, plus more as needed                                                                               Pasta-with-Green-Beans-and-Pesto-Thumbnail-300x300
  • 12 oz dried penne, casarecce or other tubular pasta
  • 8 oz green beans, trimmed and halved lengthwise
  • 1 T chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 5 t finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 c finely chopped roasted salted pistachios, plus whole ones for garnish
  • 2 T champagne vinegar (or sherry vinegar or white wine vinegar)
  • 1 T finely chopped shallot
  • 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
  • 12 t freshly ground black pepper
  • 5 T extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 1/2 c loosely packed arugula
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese shavings for garnish (optional)

Directions

  1.  Bring a pot of generously salted water to boil over med high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to package directions, adding the green beans to the water during the last 3 minutes of cooking time. Drain the pasta and beans, then rinse under cool running water.  Drain again, then transfer to a large mixing bowl.
  2. Add the thyme and 3 t of the lemon zest to the bowl; toss gently to incorporate.
  3. Whisk together the chopped pistachios, vinegar, shallot, garlic, the remaining 2 t of lemon zest, the 1/2 t of salt and the pepper in a medium bowl.  Add the oil in a slow, steady stream, whisking constantly until blended.  Taste, and
    add more salt and pepper as needed.
  4. Drizzle dressing over the pasta mixture.  Add the arugula and toss gently to coat.  Garnish with whole pistachios and the cheese, if using.