Sunday, July 12, 2009

Namesake - July 2009

Diva: Sara

Drinks: Stacey
Sykes' Salty Dog Cocktail

John and I perfected the drink a couple of years ago...Sykes family favorite!!

makes one drink:
1 and ½ ounces Absolut Mandarin Vodka
6 ounces ruby red grapefruit juice
kosher salt for rim of glass
fresh grapefruit slices for garnish

***without the salt it is called a greyhound, without the vodka it is called a salty puppy!!***

Appetizer: Mariah
Crump's Canyon Caviar

This very special dish is loved by all Crumps and is an easy breezy creation while on a river trip or simply just enjoying the river from the beach!

2 (15 ounce) cans black beans, rinsed and drained
2 (15 ounce) cans pinto beans, rinsed and drained
2 (15 ounce) cans white corn, rinsed and drained
1 (4 ounce) can chopped green chiles, undrained
1 jalapeno chile pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 red bell pepper - cored, seeded and finely chopped
1 green bell pepper - cored, seeded and finely chopped
1 small red onion, finely chopped
1 bunch cilantro leaves, finely chopped
½ c rice vinegar
½ c olive oil
1/3 c white sugar
½ teaspoon garlic powder

Mix the black beans, pinto beans, white corn, green chiles, jalapeno pepper, red and green bell peppers, red onion, and cilantro together in a large bowl.

To make the dressing, stir the rice vinegar, olive oil, sugar, and garlic powder together in a pan. Bring to a boil, then remove from heat, and cool. Pour dressing over bean mixture, and toss to mix evenly.

Cilantro Yogurt Sauce
One bunch cilantro mixed with desired amount of plain yogurt.

Serve Crump's Canyon Caviar with Cheesy Quesadilla and top with Cilantro Yogurt Sauce.

Salad: Aven
Great Grandma Mae's Frogeye Salad

My great-grandma Mae used to make this salad every summer when we would get together for little mini reunions in her backyard in Casper Wyoming. It was always my favorite. I don't know if she had her own recipe or used one from the pasta box. This recipe I found has all the same ingredients as hers - I left out the marshmellows and cool-whip and used one tub of Ricemellow creme instead.

1 lb Acini di Pepe package
1 medium Egg
½ c Sugar
1 T Flour
¼ tsp Salt
16 oz Crushed pineapple drained, reserving juice
16 oz Fruit cocktail drained
16 oz Mandarin Oranges drained
1 c Marshmallows
12 oz Cool Whip

Cook Acini di Pepe as package directs. Drain.

In a heavy saucepan, beat egg with wire wisk until foamy. Stir in sugar, flour, salt, and reserved pineapple juice. Over low heat, cook and stir until thickened and bubbly.

In a large bowl, combine Acini di Pepe with egg mixture. Chill thoroughly about an hour.

Stir in pineapple, fruit cocktail, mandarin oranges, and marshmallows. Fold in Cool Whip.

Cover and chill thoroughly. Stir before serving. Refrigerate leftovers.

Soup: Tamara
My name, Tamara, means "date palm" in Hebrew so I made a soup using dates.

Pumpkin, Red Lentil and Date Soup

100 grams red lentils
500 grams pumpkin, de-seeded cut in pieces
250 grams (1 can) crushed tomatoes
1 T oil
1 T fresh rosemary, chopped
1 T fresh thyme, leaves only
1 onion, chopped
1 liter water
1 vegetable bouillon cube
pinch of cayenne
10 dates, de-seeded and chopped
splash lemon juice

Heat the oil in a large pot.
Add the chopped onions and saute until glassy.
Add the rosemary and thyme, the pumpkin pieces and the red lentils.
Add the vegetable bouillon and cook the soup until the pumpkin is soft and the lentils are done.
Check from time to time and stir, as the soup becomes quite thick.
Add the tomatoes and the dates and puree the mixture until smooth.
Add a splash of lemon juice and season to taste with a pinch of salt and cayenne.
Garnish with coriander leaves or chili oil and serve hot.

Side Dish: Ashley
Pita pizzas with tomatoes, olives and feta inspired by Maggie's tomato salad, which she served to me during a meeting that inspired me to make a leap of faith.

Pitas (makes 8 regular sized)

3 c flour
1 ½ tsp salt
1 T sugar
1 packet yeast (or, if from bulk, 2 teaspoons yeast)
1 ¼ to 1 ½ c water, roughly at room temperature
2 T olive oil

If you are using active dry yeast, follow the instructions on the packet to active it. Otherwise, mix the yeast in with the flour, salt, and sugar. Add the olive oil and 1 1/4 cup water and stir together with a wooden spoon. All of the ingredients should form a ball. If some of the flour will not stick to the ball, add more water.

Once all of the ingredients form a ball, place the ball on a work surface, such as a cutting board, and knead the dough for approximately 10 minutes (or until your hands get tired). If you are using an electric mixer, mix it at low speed for 10 minutes.

When you are done kneading the dough, place it in a bowl that has been lightly coated with oil. I use canola spray oil, but you can also just pour a teaspoon of oil into the bowl and rub it around with your fingers. Form a ball out of the dough and place it into the bowl, rolling the ball of dough around in the bowl so that it has a light coat of oil on all sides. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap or a damp kitchen towel and set aside to rise until it has doubled in size, approximately 90 minutes.

When it has doubled in size, punch the dough down to release some of the trapped gases and divide it into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, cover the balls with a damp kitchen towel, and let them rest for 20 minutes. This step allows the dough to relax so that it'll be easier to shape.

While the dough is resting, preheat the oven to 400 degrees. If you have a baking stone, put it in the oven to preheat as well. If you do not have a baking stone, turn a cookie sheet upside down and place it on the middle rack of the oven while you are preheating the oven. This will be the surface on which you bake your pitas.

After the dough has relaxed for 20 minutes, spread a light coating of flour on a work surface and place one of the balls of dough there. Sprinkle a little bit of flour on top of the dough and use a rolling pin or your hands to stretch and flatten the dough. You should be able to roll it out to between 1/8 and 1/4 inch thick. If the dough does not stretch sufficiently you can cover it with the damp towel and let it rest 5 to 10 minutes before trying again.

Open the oven and place as many pitas as you can fit on the hot baking surface. They should be baked through and puffy after 3 minutes.

Tomato Topping:

2 c diced seeded tomatoes
1 c pitted coarsely chopped olives
½ c chopped red onion
4 T olive oil, divided
3 T chopped fresh mint
3 T chopped fresh basil
3 cloves minced garlic
1 c crumbled feta cheese

Mix topping together, mound on top of pitas and place under broiler until cheese gets warm.

Entree: Lovina
Leg of Lamb

My entree was inspired by my sister Adela. She has been on my mind a lot lately because she is going to have another baby in the next couple of weeks. The meaning of her name means "noble", thus I wanted to make something that was inspired by the definition of the word noble. I took it to mean something impressive in appearance, splendid to the senses, and of bold flavor. Having never cooked a leg of lamb and wanting to challenge the majority of people's impression of lamb as a meal choice, I decided to give honor to my sister my barbecuing a fantastic leg of lamb.

1 sirloin end leg of lamb, boned, and trussed
4 cloves garlic
8 fresh mint leaves
1 T brown sugar
1 T kosher salt
2 tsp black pepper
5 T strong mustard, such as Dijon
2 T canola oil
2 sprigs fresh rosemary

Roughly chop the garlic cloves in the food processor. Add the mint and repeat. Add the brown sugar, salt, pepper, mustard, and oil and blend to a paste. Spread the paste evenly on the meat side of the roast. Roll the leg into a roast shape and tie with cotton butcher's twine. Fire 2 quarts (1 chimney's worth) of charcoal (natural chunk is best). When charcoal is lightly covered with gray ash, split the coals into 2 piles and move them to the far sides of the cooker. Close the lid and allow the grate to heat. Then, place the lamb, skin side up, on the middle of the hot grate. Add the rosemary sprigs to the charcoal briquettes and close the lid and grill. After 20 minutes, flip the roast and rotate it 180 degrees. Insert the probe thermometer into the roast and continue to grill until it reaches an internal temperature of 135 degrees, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove the roast at 135 degrees. Remove the butcher's twine from the roast. Cover with foil and rest it for 15 minutes before serving.

Dessert: Colleen
Stephanie's Summer Crisp

My neighbor Stephanie used to make Alex and I an amazing nectarine and raspberry crisp in the summer time when we lived in Tucson. I think of her often, especially in regards to her wonderful recipes - she always fed us so well! So, for a summertime namesake dessert, Stephanie's Summer Crisp had to be the winner.

Nectarines and Raspberries - I used ~20 peaches and 3/4 lb raspberries. Put stone fruit on bottom of dish and top with raspberries.

For the crisp topping:

¾ c light brown sugar
½ c butter
¾ c white sugar
1 c flour
1 t cinnamon
1 c oatmeal (not instant)

Mix butter, sugars, cinnamon until well combined. Add the flour and oatmeal. Crisp topping should be fairly dry but when pinched together it should stick. Sprinkle on top or fruit. Bake at 350 for ~ 1 hour.

Lottery: Bonnie

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