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leftover risotto? pancakes!

25 Apr

Risotto is fantastic.  I love it dearly.  But I have to admit… I kind of get more excited about the leftovers.  Risotto pancakes are little bites of perfect crispy golden-on-the-outside-creamy-on-the-inside awesome.

They make a wonderful appetizer, lunch, snack… I eat them for breakfast.  What I’m saying is, there is no time that is not a good time for risotto pancakes.

I’ve also included a simple tomato basil sauce that I like to dip the pancakes in.

Makes 16 portions

Basic risotto recipe here.

risotto pancakes with quick tomato basil sauce

ingredients

sauce

  • 1 400ml can good quality crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely diced
  • 5 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 8 large basil leaves, chopped

risotto pancakes

  • 16 heaping tbsp risotto (about 2 c)
  • 1 1/2 c panko
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 4 tbsp olive oil, divided

preparation

sauce

Heat olive oil over medium heat.  Add onion and garlic, sautee until onions are soft.  Add tomato, basil and lemon juice.  Simmer over medium heat for about 30 minutes.

risotto pancakes

While the sauce is simmering, get three plates.  Put the flour on one, egg on another and a mixture of panko, oregano, salt and 2 tbsp olive oil on the other.

Take a heaping tablespoon of risotto and roll it into a ball.  Dredge it in the flour, then egg, then in the panko mixture.  Set aside on a plate and repeat, making 16 balls.

Cook the pancakes in 2 batches.  Heat 1 tbsp olive oil over medium-low heat.  Place 8 of the risotto balls on the pan and press down gently on them to flatten slightly.  Cook until they’re golden brown then turn over and cook the other side to the same golden brown.  Repeat with the second batch.

Serve warm with sauce.  You can pour the sauce over them if you like, I prefer to serve it on the side so the crust on the pancakes doesn’t get soggy.

tarragon mustard deviled eggs

10 Apr

I made these for a tacky 70s themed finger food dinner a while ago and my friend ate so many that she almost made herself sick.  Then she kept eating them.

That is a ringing endorsement if ever I heard one.

Makes 16 portions

$4 per 16 portions

mustard tarragon deviled eggs

ingredients

  • 8 large eggs, hard boiled
  • 1/2 c mayonnaise
  • 2 tsp dijon mustard
  • 2 tsp smoked paprika, divided
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice
  • 2 tbsp chopped fresh tarragon
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp pepper

preparation

Peel the hard boiled eggs and cut them in half.  Scoop the yolks out into a bowl, keeping the whites intact on a plate.

To the bowl with the yolks, add mayonnaise, mustard, 1 tsp paprika, lemon juice, tarragon, salt & pepper.  Mix with a fork until smooth.

Put the mixture in a piping bag (I don’t have one so I get an extra clear plastic produce bag at the grocery store and cut a small hole in the corner.  It works fine for jobs like this).  Pipe the yolk mixture into the hollows of the egg whites.  Sprinkle the remaining paprika over the tops of the eggs.

pico de gallo

17 Mar

Fresh salsa to go with grilled basa fish tacos.  It’s also tasty on tortilla chips and even better mixed into guacamole.

pico de gallo

ingredients

  • 4-5 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
  • 1/2 of a medium yellow onion, finely diced (about 3/4 c)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3-4 green onions, white and pale green parts only, thinly sliced
  • 1 jalapeno pepper, finely diced (seeds in if you like heat, seeds removed if you want it mild)
  • 1 c chopped fresh cilantro
  • juice of 1/2 a lime

lots of cilantro...

preparation

Combine all ingredients, mix well.  Adjust amounts of jalepeno and lime as desired.  If made in advance pour off any excess liquid that has accumulated in the bottom of the bowl before serving.

honey soaked date + toasted almond biscotti

17 Feb

I helped a close friend of mine move just over a month ago. In return, she demanded that I make her biscotti as a housewarming gift. So I’ve finally gotten around to it. This is one of many many variations on this basic biscotti recipe that I’ve tried and they turned out to be delicious, once again. The dates and almonds can be swapped out for just about any dried fruit / nut combination that pleases you so follow your rainbow!

Note: it seems tempting (or it did to me when I first started using this recipe) to add a little more than a cup of ground almonds to the batter. Do not do this. Use a cup exactly, a little less if anything. The almonds give the cookie a wonderful flavour but too much will leave you with a crumbly mess instead of a crunchy delight.

honey soaked date & toasted almond biscotti

Adapted from Food & Drink Fall 2011

ingredients

  • 1 3/4 c all-purpose flour
  • 1 c ground almonds1 tsp baking powder
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter at room temperature
  • 2/3 c sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 tbsp honey
  • 3/4 c dried dates
  • 1/4 c whole almonds, toasted, coarsely chopped

preparation

Preheat oven to 350°F

Cut dates in quarters (cut lengthwise and then crosswise) and place in a small bowl.  Drizzle with honey and let stand while preparing the dough.

In large bowl, stir flour with ground almonds and baking powder with a fork or whisk.

Cream butter and sugar in large bowl.  Beat in eggs, one at a time.  Add vanilla and beat until evenly mixed.  Add flour mixture.  Beat until almost incorporated and dough comes together.  Stir in honey dates and almonds until evenly distributed.

Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.  Place dough on sheet and form into a log, about 12 inches long, 3 inches wide and 1 inch tall.  The dough will be very sticky so wet your hands to work with it.

Bake in centre of preheated oven for about 25 to 30 minutes, until lightly golden on top.  Remove from oven and allow log to cool completely, at least 30 minutes.  meanwhile, reduce oven temperature to 300°F.  When log is cool slice 1/2 inch thick slices.  Place slices on a rack set on baking sheet (or turn half way through second baking).

Bake again for 20 to 30 minutes, until lightly golden and dry.  Cool completely before serving.

Biscotti will keep well in an airtight container at room temperature for up to a week or freeze up to 1 month.