Thursday, June 23, 2011
The Daily Herald is Utah Valley's Newspaper and the Freedom Festival is Utah Valley's way to celebrate the fourth of July. This year as a thank you to Utah Valley the Daily Herald, a Festival sponsor, is offering sponsorship Stadium of Fire tickets so we can celebrate together! 50% off and NO TICKET FEES for this exclusive, one time only, deal brought to you by the Daily Herald.
Deal of the Day website (heraldextra.com/dealoftheday)
Wednesday, June 15, 2011
After ten luxurious days lounging on the beach in sunny San Clemente, California, I returned to my garden with bronzed skin and renewed interest in dirt, weeds, and all God’s plants. Early that first morning back home I padded in my slippers out to my rock garden boxes (low-lying Stonehenge set in grass) to discover the arugula fairy had definitely stopped at my house. This sweet/peppery green had grown to the size of giant cabbage leaves. In my absence the cold and rain encouraged the arugula to show off like I have never seen—and to do so with tender sweetness. As I harvested, baskets were full to overflowing. I grazed the whole time. There are Billy goats that could not eat as much arugula as I ate. And then, like the Little Red Hen, I went inside carrying my treasure and made myself a giant salad out of the beautiful oak-shaped green.
With its assertive flavor and tenderness, arugula likes to partner with fruity, sweet flavors. Strawberries, balsamic vinegar, and almonds are a classic combo. As is oranges, feta, and arugula. Arugula also makes a great appearance on a ham and cheese grilled sandwich as well as in a chorizo sausage omelet. Getting hungry? I know I am. The following recipe got cut at the last minute from my book Miracle Pill 10 Truths to Healthy, Thin, & Sexy, through no fault of its own. Which is a real shame because this lemon-garlic-caper dressing over freshly shaved Parmigiano Reggiano, pine nuts, and arugula is a home run—help me I’m swooning. Enjoy.
When you can find beautiful fresh arugula in the market (known as “rocket” in England), enjoy this no-nonsense salad inspired by the flavors of Tuscany. Alternately, grow it yourself in a pot outside your door. Every spring this peppery green volunteers to sprout up in my garden amid more reluctant vegetables that have the sense to wait until the snow melts. Arugula loves cool weather and develops sweetness in early spring. Harvest it young for the mildest and most tender leaves. The bold flavors of this salad pair well with an entrée of roast lamb, tomato and zucchini ragout, or garlic-rubbed steaks.
1 small clove garlic
2 tablespoons flat-leaf Italian parsley
1 teaspoon capers, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cups baby spinach, washed and dried
2 cups arugula, washed and dried
1 1/2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
Parmigiano Reggiano or Asiago cheese for grating
In a small processor or blender, puree garlic, parsley, capers and lemon juice. Drizzle in olive oil and blend until emulsified. In a large bowl toss spinach and arugula with dressing. Divide between four plates. Sprinkle salads with pine nuts. Using a vegetable peeler or hand grater, top salads with cheese and a grind of fresh black pepper, and serve.
Tres Hatch is the author of Miracle Pill 10 Truths to Healthy, Thin, & Sexy.
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
Sometimes life presents a quandary and this week it was: cookies or muffins? So I made both. Determined to use up a gargantuan amount of leftover pack pumpkin, I began with the following recipe from Taste of Home Magazine for Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies. Not only were they ethereal (note the past tense), but they were the perfect texture of soft and cakey, with a surprising snap to the outer crust. The inclusion of oats gave them greater moisture and heft. Perhaps…the perfect cookie.
Although tempted to make several more batches of these cookies, I had the wild hare to branch out with muffins. I took one look at a recipe I had for “skinny” Pumpkin Muffins and promptly modified it to feature chocolate chips and a sufficient quantity of sugar. Choking down an inferior muffin with half the sugar doesn’t benefit me when it is primarily a white flour cake made with butter. I’m just keeping it real. With the badly needed inclusion of chocolate and the nutty texture of sunflower seeds on top, these muffins are outstanding. They have none of the sour-metallic flavor prominent in some baking powder quick breads and with a moist crumb inside, they were gobbled up before I could say “carbohydrates.”
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies
Makes approximately 48 cookies
1 cup butter, softened
¾ cup brown sugar, packed
¾ cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour (our use half whole wheat and half white flour)
1 cup oats (quick or old-fashioned)
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon, ground
1 cup canned pumpkin
1 ½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips
Preheat oven to 350-degrees. In bowl of standing mixer cream butter and both sugars until fluffy. Add egg and vanilla extract and beat well. In a large bowl whisk together flour, oats, baking soda, and cinnamon. In three additions fold dry mixture into butter mixture. Stir in chocolate chips. Drop by tablespoons onto greased baking sheets. Bake for 12-15 minutes until lightly browned.
Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Muffins with Sunflower Seeds
Makes 12 muffins
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
¾ teaspoon cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon salt
1 stick (1/2 cup) butter, softened
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup sugar
2 large eggs
¾ cup pumpkin puree
¼ cup milk
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
sunflower seeds (optional)
Preheat oven to 400-degrees. In a large bowl whisk flour, baking powder, spices, and salt. Line a regular muffin pan with paper liners or brush muffin tins with oil. In large bowl of standing mixer beat butter until soft and fluffy and then beat in the sugars. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each. Carefully, stir in pumpkin and milk. Stir in chocolate chips. Fill muffin cups with approximately ½ cup batter and sprinkle tops with sunflower seeds. Bake about 25 minutes or until muffins are puffed and toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Serve warm or at room temperature.