Heirloom Meals: Savoring Yesterday's Traditions Today

Friday April 22, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Easter Pie and Earth Day Reflections

Time to make the Easter Pie.  And this one is not a concoction.  This one's from my family archives!! 

The cooking is always the centerpiece of our holidays.  But today I want to reflect on life, being alive and grateful for all I have.  It is Earth Day today. It is Good Friday. Be cognizant of the beauty of nature and our need to save and preserve. Be grateful for the mysteries of this wonderful life and the religious ceremonies that seek to explain and celebrate our great earth and all its creatures.

Never take any of it for granted - life, the planet, friendships, great food and family!! I just spoke one of my best friends in the whole world and learned that the tumor in her brain doubled in size in 6 months and she must have surgery. My heart aches for her and yet, I am in awe.  She is brave and calm.

So this Easter, I pray for AnneMarie.

Friday April 15, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Fish Fridays

There are certain religious traditions that I can embrace.  One of them is eating fish on Fridays. It's a great habit to get into because fish is so good for you and it's delicious!!

Here's a simple and delicious recipe I developed: Dover Sole with Mustard Caper Sauce.  Serve with roasted asparagus and brown rice for a healthy and delicious supper!!

Friday March 18, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Boston Flower Show - Come See Us - Sunday, March 20th - NOON

Here's what Mom, Jen and I have concocted to demo at the Boston Flower Show:

Out of the Container and Into the Pan  -  Recipes for the Boston Flower Show

Tarragon Chive Pasta Salad

1 lb Tri-color Rotini
3/4 cups olive oil - 1/4 cup to toss with pasta, 1/2 for the dressing
1 cup Scallions, sliced
3/4 cup Chives, minced
1/4 cup Tarragon, minced
1/4 cup Champagne vinegar
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tsp sugar
4 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and Pepper to Taste
Red Pepper Flakes to taste

Cook pasta until al dents. Drain and toss in a large bowl with 1/4 cup f olive oil. Cool. Add scallions, chives and tarragon.
Whisk together the mustard, vinegar, garlic, sugar, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes. Slowly add in the 1/2 cup of olive oil in a stream until incorporated well. Pour over pasta and mix.

Best if pasta sits at room temperature for at least 4 hours or chill overnight and bring to room temperature before serving. Enjoy!

Serves 8-10 as a side.

 

Pork Tenderloin with Pesto Rub

2 Pork Tenderloins
8 garlic cloves
2 cups basil gently packed
4 cups parsley, gently packed
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup walnuts
1/4 cup parmesan cheese
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Place tenderloins on a plate. Pat dry.
In a food processor, first process the garlic, then add in the basil and parsley, then the walnuts, cheese, salt, pepper and oil. Do not over process. The pesto should be light green. Rub the pesto all over the pork, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate over night.
Grill the tenderloins to desired doneness. Slice to desired thickness and enjoy!!
Serves 4-6 as an entree, 8-10 as an appetizer.

 

Strawberries with Mint Simple Syrup and Lemon Zest

1 cup sugar
1 cup sugar
A handful of mint
4 cups strawberries
1/2 cup Mint simple syrup
Zest of one lemon

Simple syrup is simple - it’s one part sugar to one part water. Cook sugar, water and mint over medium-high heat until sugar is dissolved and water boils. Remove and let cool. Store in refrigerator until ready to use.

Clean and cut up the strawberries. Add the syrup and lemon zest to strawberries and let sit for a few hours. (AKA macerate). Serve strawberries over vanilla ice cream for a refreshing dessert.

Serves 4-6.

Friday March 04, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Dinner in a Flash!

I had the great joy of having my Mom on the radio show again this past Wednesday and we reminisced about cooking and food and one of the dishes we spoke about was a simple Cauliflower, bacon and onion pasta dish that Nana and Mm had in their arsenal for a quick quick dinner prep.  You know, for those days when you don't get home in time to make a more elaborate dinner or one that requires more time.  We chatted about how easy it is to whip something up if you have a well-stocked pantry and fridge.

So put this one in your arsenal - you will not be disappointed!!

Monday February 21, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Maurice’s Menu

There is nothing that gives me more joy than cooking for friends.  Here's the menu that I made for my dear friend, Maurice Peterson's birthday party.  An evening of love, laughter and fun was had by all!!

(Maurice and Jim)

Appetizers

Guacamole and Chips

Hot Artichoke Dip

Cheese Board

Main Course

Chicken Divan

Spicy Chicken Cacciatore

Brown Rice

Salad

Dessert

Heirloom Flourless Chocolate Cake

Drinks

Maurice Martini - made with homemade ginger simple syrup and Absolute Citron

Red and White Wine

Boulderwood Spring Water - sine and con gas - gas a la sodastream

Friday February 04, 2011

Carole’s Concoctions:
Soup Contest

I must say as I read through the 17 recipes that I received for the contest I know that I am so graced to have created Heirloom Meals.  To read the stories and the memories that are attached to the recipes touches my heart in the deepest place. Here are a couple of recipes and their stories:

Carol Way shares, "This soup was adapted from my grandmother’s recipe. My meme’ was French Canadian, born in Quebec City and made chicken soup year round. She was a purist, and believed that onion, celery and carrots were the only vegetables worthy of her soup. Depending on what was available, she would use rice or macaroni, never potatoes, as the starch.

My future daughter in law was born in Korea. When we visit Shane and Sophia in New York City, we always end up Korea town and feast on man doo and the Korean version of chicken soup. When I first had it, I made my version based on my grandmother’s simple soup but added an Asian flair!
It amazes me that recipes are universal. When I lived in Housatonic for over 20 years, my polish neighbor made a similar chicken soup but used potatoes while my grandmother thought potatoes would ruin the soup! My Italian father in law makes a minestrone version of chicken soup adding what ever is fresh and available from his garden.
I’m looking forward to hearing about all types of chicken soup even though I know I will never venture too far from Meme’s tried and true recipe! "

And, Mishy Lesser reveals: I come from a Jewish family and chicken soup is legendary not just for healing the sick but also as a ritual food that is sometimes enjoyed as we celebrate the Sabbath on Friday nights, and always for Passover.  I’m sure ours is not the only family where there can be fierce rivalry over whose chicken soup reigns supreme, and more than once I’ve seen significant jockeying among cooks who want their soup to kick-off the meal.  I can identify: I am that way with turkey, but that is another story.  Recently my mother and I were planning a holiday menu that included chicken soup and she shared with me that she has never been able to replicate the smell of her mother’s soup.  Mind you, my mother is eighty-three and that means she’s had countless opportunities to try to figure this out.  We wondered if the aroma and flavor she remembers came from the chickens, what they were fed, whether her mother used chicken frames or extra parts, but we haven’t been able to crack the code.  In her own words, she says “I remember chicken soup from my childhood as smelling absolutely wonderful and have never managed to experience that level of deliciousness again.  Perhaps it is just remembering the past the way I want it to be, or perhaps someone out there has the answer!”

I will be sharing everyone's recipe and story in the days to come! Thank you from the bottom of my heart!!
 

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