Rye berry salad recipe

 This one is a rye berry salad that can be prepared in advance.

It keeps very well for a day or two, so it works great for a light lunch at the office or at the seaside, as a side dish to bring to a potluck, or as a make ahead dinner ready for after your busy days.

Rye berry salad

Ingredients

  • 3 oz rye berries (per person)
  • 1 tomato
  • 5 olives
  • 2-3 stalks celery
  • 1 can tuna
  • 3-4 leaves basil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • salt
  • pepper
  • EVOO

Directions

  1. Start by cooking the rye berries in salted, boiling water. The berries will take a good hour to cook, so I use a pressure cooker to speed up the process.
  2. While the berries are cooking, start on the dressing. In a bowl, put the crushed garlic clove, add the diced tomato, the tuna, the pitted olives and the diced celery stalks. Season to taste with salt, pepper and chopped basil and add a bit of EVOO. Mix well and let rest until the berries are cooked.
  3. When the berries are cooked add them to the tomato salad and mix well. Add another bit of EVOO if necessary. Serve warm or cold.
  4. A few words on the ingredients.
  5. For tuna use tuna preserved in oil if at all possible, it will make your salad much much better! Tuna under water is lighter but is also terribly dry and frankly almost inedible by itself, tuna under oil might be less light but can save you from drowning it in mayo, cheese or whatever else you use to make it edible.
  6. Also the olives choose good olives, possibly black roasted olives or non stuffed green olives if you can find them, don’t use the pitted black olives in a can that taste no different than plastic.
  7. For the berries, you can easily substitute them with another cereal: rice, wild rice, spelt, whole wheat, grain, barley…. All of them would work, just pick your favorite!

No bake yogurt cake

I prepared a 4th of July cake. It is super easy to make, you don’t have to even turn on the oven or the stove and it is super fresh. Perfect for a summer dessert.

No bake yogurt cake

Ingredients

  • 2 (250 gms) yogurt tubs
  • 1 (200 ml) small heavy whipping cream carton
  • 20-30 graham crackers
  • 1/3 (about 30 gms) stick butter
  • 1 packet powder gelatin
  • fruit to decorate

Directions

  1. First prepare a spring form pan by lining it with parchment paper. This is probably the most difficult past of the cake, as you want the paper to be smooth on the sides.
  2. Melt the butter in the microwave and blend it with the cookies until you get a mixture of damp cookie crumbs. Press the cookie mixture into the cake mold to form a base for your cake. Put the mold in the freezer while you prepare the filling to allow it to solidify.
  3. In a bowl warm the yogurt and melt the gelatin in the yogurt. Whip the heavy whipping cream and, when stiff, mix it well to the yogurt mixture.
  4. Take the mold out of the fridge and spread the yogurt mixture over the base. Put in the fridge to solidify for about 3-4 hours.
  5. When the cake has solidified, decorate with your favorite fruit. In honor of the fourth of July I used blueberry and strawberries.
  6. Keep the cake in the fridge until serving and put the leftovers back in the fridge.

Roasted peppers

One of my favorite thing to eat in summer are roasted vegetables. They are great for a number of reasons: they’re healthy, fresh, light and in summer they taste great. Also they can be made ahead, and can be cooked in the oven, on the stove or on the grill.

I like marinating my roasted veggies, and each vegetable deserve its own. For peppers, I like to put in a bit of capers and a bit of anchovies. The saltiness of those ingredients balances off the sweetness of the peppers and yields a great side dish for red meat.

Marinated roasted peppers

Marinated roasted peppers

Ingredients

  • 2-3 peppers yellow and red
  • 1 spoon capers
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 5 anchovies
  • oregano
  • EVOO
  • salt
  • pepper
  • goat cheese (optio

Directions

  1. Start by roasting your peppers. You can do it however you prefer, I washed mine and cooked them whole in the oven for about 30 minutes using the broiling function. Grill would work great as well if you have it on for cooking some meat.
  2. When the peppers are cooked, put them in a paper bag or a Ziploc, close it and let them cool down. This will make peeling much easier.
  3. In a small pan, warm up some oil and add in the crushed garlic and the anchovies. Let cook until the anchovies are melted and the garlic is soft. Add in the capers and the oregano and cook for another couple of minutes.
  4. At this point the pepper should be cool enough to be handled. Skin them, clean them and cut them in stripes.
  5. Arrange on a platter and dress with the warm dressing. Season to taste with salt and pepper and, if you like it, add a bit of goat cheese. Check before adding the salt as most of the ingredients of the dressing are very salty.

3.1

Easy Carpaccio Recipe

Carpaccio is very simple and summery Italian dish, perfect for last minute cooking. The only difficult past is that you need perfect knives skills or a good meat slicer. Other than that it is a very straightforward and it won’t take you more than 10 minutes to prepare.

As a child i was not a big fan of the texture of carpaccio, but as I grew older I started appreciating it more, and I also appreciate the lightness, freshness and easiness to prepare, which of course were not on the priority list when I was younger. But now I have seen the light, and I hope some of you that haven’t tried carpaccio yet or are squeamish about eating raw meat will give it a try!

Carpaccio

Ingredients

  • Ingredients:
  • beef tenderloin
  • mixed greens
  • parmesan
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • lemon juice
  • salt
  • pepper

Directions

  1. Put your beef in the freezer for 1/2 an hour or so. Putting the beef in the freezer will allow you to slice the meat easily. I sometimes also tie the meat before placing it in the freezer like I would do for a roast. The idea is that tying the meat will allow you to get a nice round slice.
  2. On a platter arrange some mixed greens and the sliced meat. Over the meat shave the parmesan and then dress the dish with oil, the lemon juice and salt and pepper.
  3. Since there is really no cooking involved, the key of the dish here is to pick great ingredients and to slice the meat as thinly as you can without tearing it. The most important part is of course the meat, but don’t overestimate the power of the oil and the lemon.

Crostata recipe

And it is again the time of the month where we come together from different blogs to reinterpret one the recipes proposed by Christianna at the Burwell General Store. This month lovely Christianna has chosen once again a cake. Christianna, Dennis, Toni, Sabrina, Lora, Lindsay, Mari, Mary, Jennifer, Crissy and Lauren, Jamie, Claire, Shari, Joy, Monique, Linda, Priya, Rachel, Alli, Katy, Lana, Emily, Jaclyn and I have come up with some sort of creative reinvention of the jelly cake.

I have been doing quite a bit of thinking and finally I settled on crostata. Crostata is a typical cake from Italy made with a sort of shortbread crust and filled with jam. I love it and hate it the same time. Love it because it is a memory of my childhood and one of the first things I learned how to bake. Hate it because good dough is super crumbly and it frustrate me to roll it out and move it around. Using plastic wrap to unroll the paste helps quite a bit, but I’d work with pie crust over this dough any the time. Anyway after screaming out in frustration a couple of times I usually get it done and the excellent result makes up for the frustration.

By the way don’t let me discourage you, this dough is simple and not that frustrating for anyone with average patience, I just have no patience in me…

Recipe swap: Crostata

Ingredients

  • 10 oz. flour
  • 5 oz. butter
  • 5 oz. sugar
  • 2-3 yolks (depending on size)
  • 1 pinch salt
  • your favorite marmelade or jam
  • 4-6 graham crakers

Directions

  1. In your mixer, mix the fridge cold butter with the flour. Combine quickly until you get a blend of flour “crumbs”. Stop the mixer and transfer the crumbs onto your kitchen counter. Make a well at the center of the crumbs and put in the yolks, add the sugar and mix the dough without overworking it. As soon as the ingredients are well combined, make a disk, wrap it in plastic and set to rest in the fridge for about 30 minutes.
  2. While the dough is resting, prepare a spring form pan by buttering it or lining it with parchment paper.
  3. Place the rested dough on a large plastic wrap sheet and cover the dough with some more plastic wrap, you will use the wrap to facilitate rolling and moving the dough.
  4. Roll out the dough between the two plastic foils until the dough is about 1/2 inch thick. Place the dough in the pan and cut out the excess dough.
  5. Crumble the cookies and spread them on the bottom of the cake, then cover with the jam. I used gooseberry jam, but any jam, marmalade or jelly would work. I like using more acidic ones to counterbalance at least a bit the sweetness of the dough.
  6. Roll out the leftover dough and use it to decorate the top of the cake. If you still have leftover, use them to bake some shortbread cookies.
  7. This cake is perfect for breakfast and o use up leftover jam from canning.