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Thursday
Aug302012

Steak Under The Sea

Tuna's full flavor is sturdy enough to balance the Far East flavors of this marinade. This tastes best served cold or at room temperature. Ideal dish for a lunch-in gathering or outdoor party buffet.

Grilled Tuna Steak Salad
Recipe by Chef George Hirsch | Makes four servings 

2 12 ounce tuna steaks, 2 inches thick 
1 Tablespoon fresh ginger, peeled and chopped
2 cloves garlic, chopped
1 Tablespoon soy sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
1 Tablespoon cilantro, chopped
3 Tablespoons olive oil
4 cups mixed salad greens

Pre heat a grill to high heat.

Marinate tuna steaks for ten minutes with ginger, garlic, soy sauce, sesame oil and cilantro. Coat both sides of tuna with one Tablespoon olive oil.

Placing tuna steaks on grill,  after 2-3 minutes, lift the tuna steaks, using a spatula, and turn them 45 degrees to make a crosshatch mark. After 2 minutes, turn the tuna steaks. Continue cooking until the tuna is cooked to desired taste. Avoid turning the tuna steaks over several times. Many prefer tuna cooked to medium, and carry over cooking will continue to cook the fish to medium well.

Remove from grill, place tuna on plate, cool for 2-3 minutes and slice. Serve over cool salad greens. Drizzle with remaining olive oil.

Serving suggestion: serve with couscous.

Tuesday
Aug282012

Banana Walnut Bread 

I am a sucker for traditions, and banana bread is one of those desserts I look forward to making when I feel the need to relish in the goodness of basic quick baking. It's the perfect time because I seem to have enough bananas in the freezer that went ripe overnight from the summer heat. Serve with cold or a hot cup of Barry's Tea. Also, it's perfect to pack-up for an easy take along snack or midday treat.

Tip: Ripe bananas (black) are the key to success. Save ripe bananas still in their skins and freeze in a plastic freezer bag until you have enough to make a full recipe. 

The crumble topping is optional; and for a lower fat Banana Bread recipe, replace butter in part or all with applesauce. 

Banana Walnut Bread 
Recipe Chef George Hirsch | Makes 1 loaf or 10-12 muffins

For the Crumb Topping:
1/3 cup lite brown sugar
2 Tablespoons all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cinnamon
2 Tablespoons walnuts or pecans, chopped
1 Tablespoon sweet butter

In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, flour, cinnamon, and nuts. Blend butter in with a fork until mixture is crumb like.

For the Loaf Mix:
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 cups about 3-4 large very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup pure cane granulated sugar
3 Tablespoons honey
1 egg, beaten
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 cup walnuts or pecans, chopped into 1/4 inch pieces
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest
1/2 cup sweet butter, melted; Or replace with part/ all applesauce

Lightly grease loaf pan.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

In a large bowl, mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In another bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, honey, egg, cinnamon, vanilla, nuts, and melted butter. Fold in by hand with a spatula the banana mixture into the flour mixture until just moistened. 

Place batter into loaf pan; and if using the optional crumb topping sprinkle on top of batter. 

Bake for 45-50 minutes. Test with a toothpick inserted into center of loaf. Done when it comes out clean.

Sunday
Aug192012

Mugolio

Good Stuff Pick: Mugolio Pine Cone Bud Syrup

At the end of May each year, condiment artisan, Elenora Cunacia hand harvests Mugo pine cone buds to create delicious mugolio syrup. The cones are from the dwarf Mugo pine trees, located in Northern Italy's Dolomite Mountain region. The syrup is then aged in the sunlight for six months before being filtered, sweetened and cooked. The result is a golden nutty-sweet syrup similar to dark honey, ideal as a sweet decadent topping.

Serving suggestion: Drizzle over thick Greek yogurt, gelato, mascapone or grilled pork.

Available at specialty markets.


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