Caesar salads are one of those staples that seem to appear on every restaurant menu no matter where you travel to. If it’s been a while since you’ve had a really great caesar, let us help you remember why it became such a classic in the first place. Forget about pre-made croutons and less than fresh Parmesan – this Caesar is bright and flavorful with freshly squeezed lemon balanced by salty anchovies, fresh croutons and a generous amount of fresh Parmesan. With the addition of grilled chicken, it’s the perfect light dinner for an evening dining alfresco at home or on vacation. Enjoy!
6 anchovy fillets packed in oil, drained or use anchovy paste
1 garlic clove
2 egg yolks
1 tablespoon yellow mustard
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
½ cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons olive oil
fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely grated Parmesan
Chop together anchovy fillets, garlic, and pinch of salt, then mash using a fork until they become a paste. Scrape into a medium sized bowl. Whisk in egg yolks, juice of 1 lemon and the yellow mustard. Gradually whisk in olive oil, then vegetable oil, pouring it in a steady stream. Whisk the dressing until it is thick and becomes shiny and creamy looking. Whisk in the Parmesan, season with salt and pepper.
3 cups country bread, with crust coped into 1inch cubes
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 tsp garlic powder
Preheat oven to 425°. Toss bread with olive oil, garlic powder and salt and bake in a cast iron skillet or a baking sheet lined with parchment. Bake, stirring occasionally so they brown evenly, about 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Set Aside
3 hearts of romaine
Homemade caesar dressing
fresh ground pepper
Wash 3 romaine hearts and separate the leaves, chop them into thirds. Fill each bowl with lettuce, spoon dressing onto the salad, and lightly toss. Add croutons, shaved Parmesan and freshly ground pepper.
Summer evenings at our house typically consist of an easy dinner outside with drinks and activities lasting well into the sunset hours. We might as well live on the back patio. We like to keep our meals simple, and follow them with something light and sweet. One of my favorite ways to end a meal is with a summery take on the marshmallow cereal bar. Our entire household loves Rice Krispy Treats, for their simplicity, nostalgia and, they are so good! I thought it would be a fun idea to try a few different versions of an old favorite. We bought a bunch or cereal one day and began experimenting, I bought come Cap’n Crunch (the plain variety) and immediately had an idea. I went over to the dried fruit section at the store and purchased a bag of mixed freeze-dried berries. I made my cereal treats as usual, which at out house means lots of vanilla and mixed in the entire bag (even the fine powder at the bottom) of freeze-dried berries into the cap’n crunch marshmallow mixture. I poured it out onto waxed paper, shaped and let it cool. The kitchen was filled with the really concentrated berry smell that was so wonderful and summery – I could hardly wait to cut into those bars. When they finally cooled enough to cut, I did so and took a bite…WOW! So much berry flavor in a bite, so summery and somehow nostalgic. They are a delicious treat to take down to the beach when you’re in Rosemary Beach, or pack them as a snack when wandering through the woods in Seabrook. Better yet, bring these festive red and blue berry goods to your Memorial Day cookout and watch them disappear.
1 20oz box of Cap’n Crunch
1 3.5oz or so bag of freeze dried berries
2 10oz packages of mini marshmallows
1 stick of salted butter
1 tbsp vanilla
Waxed paper or parchment (greased)
In a stockpot carefully melt and slightly brown the butter over medium heat. Add both bags of mini marshmallows and stir until they are almost completely melted. Carefully add the vanilla, stir once more and remove from heat. Add the box of Capn’ Crunch and the freeze dried berries and stir. Quickly pour onto a greased sheet of waxed paper or parchment and pat down to shape into a rectangle. Allow to cool about 5 minutes and cut into pieces. I like to cute the ragged edge off so you have really nice square pieces. Eat the edges you cutoff when no one is looking.
This time of year we’re making s’mores just about every time we gather. They are timelessly perfect for a Memorial Day barbecue, a Friday night fire pit on the porch, or a beach bonfire while on vacation.
We absolutely love s’mores. So much, we needed a simple s’mores alternative for when a fire is too much fuss. Since we’re straying from the traditional fireside s’more, we decided now is as good a time as any to implement another substitution: enter the delicious, butter saltiness of the ritz cracker. I was inspired to make a crust in the style of a graham cracker crust using ritz. It seemed like a great balance for a really sweet dessert. The cracker crust was a little delicate for melted marshmallows, so I opted for marshmallow cream. It torched beautifully and had the perfect consistency. This dessert is a simple yet sophisticated take on an old favorite.
6 1/2 oz of Ritz crackers (almost 2 sleeves)
1 stick of butter melted
2 tablespoons sugar
1/3 teaspoon salt
Preheat oven to 350ºF. Pulse Ritz crackers in a food processor until they turn into crumbs, add butter, sugar and salt and pulse until combined.
Firmly press mixture into bottom of an 8×8 dish. Bake until edges are golden, about 15 minutes. Let cool completely on a wire rack.
2 cups of quality chocolate chips
1/4 cup coconut oil
Melt the chocolate and coconut oil in a double boiler or carefully in the microwave. Once it is completely melted, stir to make sure they a are combined, remove from heat and set aside to cool a bit.
2 jars of marshmallow cream or 2 10oz bags of melted marshmallows
1 recipe of homemade magic shell
1 ritz cracker crust
Pour enough marshmallow cream on top of the ritz crust to give you a nice thick layer. Toast the marshmallow cream using a kitchen torch or carefully broil until nice and toasted like a good campfire marshmallow. Set the crust with the torched marshmallow in the freezer for a bit to cool it off a bit(not necessary but it will help the magic shell a lot quicker since you usually pour it over frozen ice cream). Pour the magic shell over the dessert and before it sets up sprinkle it with flaked salt if desired. Cut into to squares and serve.
Pancakes are a family favorite at our house, so much so that our son has declared every Sunday to be Pancake Day. To keep it interesting, I usually try to make a new pancake every week. It has been lot of fun to have this tradition and still keep it fresh. When we take family vacations to 30a or Seabrook, it’s fun to try to incorporate local flavors into our pancakes. One of our favorites that we picked up while visiting Florida in the spring is strawberry pancakes. They have the most delicious aroma that you can only get from fresh strawberries. This time of year, strawberries are making their way back into the markets and may even be starting to pop up in your strawberry patch at home, so good fresh strawberries should be easy to find. And make sure to save some for the topping as well. These will definitely be a family favorite!
1 cup flour
2 tablespoons of sugar
3 teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon of salt
1 beaten egg
½ cup milk
6-8 strawberries hulled
2 tablespoons of olive oil
In a medium mixing bowl stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, and salt. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture; set aside.
In another medium mixing bowl combine the beaten egg, vanilla extract and olive oil. In a blender blend half of the strawberries and milk and add to the egg mixture. Add egg mixture all at once to the dry mixture. Stir just till moistened. Dice the remaining half of the fresh strawberries and fold into the batter (batter should be lumpy).
For standard-size pancakes, pour about ¼ cup batter onto a hot, lightly greased griddle or heavy skillet. Cook over medium heat about 2 minutes on each side or till pancakes are golden brown, turning to second sides when pancakes have bubbly surfaces and edges are slightly dry. Serve warm. Makes 6 to 8 standard-size pancakes (6 servings).
We know what you’re thinking… Produce, right? Well, for the sake of complete disclosure, you ought to know that prior to typing out this post I scarfed a lot of Valentine’s candy. We are not those people passing out apples and lectures about the dangers of sweets on Halloween, but rather, we were just inspired by the playfulness, bright colors and fun of our local farmer’s market. Okay, and maybe we’re halfway hoping there is some subliminal message that might encourage our son to try his carrots tonight.
Regardless, we wanted to share these DIY printable Farmer’s Market Valentine’s Day cards for you to share with your friends and family this February 14th.
To add to the Farmer’s Market theme, each of our Valentines is getting their Valentine card in a paper sack with a piece of replica model produce and obviously a dash of sequins for good taste. We got our little collection of assorted fruits and veggies from Michaels.
To download, just click on the link, print and cut out!
After a day exploring the Pacific beaches in and around Seabrook, the cool weather and an inviting fire calls for a drink that is a bit heartier and warm. Whiskies tend to have a warming effect while amaros have an herbal bittersweet quality. Recently, while looking for something new to try, I came across an aperitif called Cardamaro that really caught my attention. Caradamaro is infused with cardoon (a relative of the artichoke) and then rested in oak barrels to finish. This liquor has some beautiful flavors: roasted nuts, subtle sweetness, fresh pine and a nice hint of artichoke. It may sound like a lot but it is wonderful just on the rocks with a twist of lemon. Once I tried it, I decided it would be a fantastic addition to a cocktail so I went with my go to: the sour. I shook it with mostly rye, some fresh lemon juice and maple. The result was absolutely delicious, just what I was looking for. Caradamro is relatively easy to find at any higher end liquor and costs about $20. I hope you’ll go out and grab a bottle and try this wonderful amaro for yourself.
2oz rye (I used rittenhouse)
1 oz Cardamaro
3/4 ounce fresh lemon juice (about half a medium sized lemon)
1/2 oz maple syrup
Add all of the ingredients to a shaker, fill 2/3 full with ice and shake until very cold. Strain into a rocks glass filled with ice. Enjoy!