Summer Cooking Class Series!!

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Yes I know I have been a little “MIA” lately!!!

But this summer has been busy and I can’t believe its JULY!!!! 
I have my hand in so many different little things that I am just so busy and it’s been hard to find the time to blog.  Plus I have not been cooking anything really good for myself, so hence no blogs.

But I did finish a couple weeks ago a cooking class series that I did in 3 of our stores 🙂

They all turned out great, a lot of grilling and a few out of the box recipes, beer sampling with one too!!

Here are a few pictures of the dishes and the crowds, it was a great time and I had a LOT of help from some of GREAT co-workers.

I hope you enjoy!!!

Grilled Fruit Pizza – naan bread, Camembert cheese, blackberries, strawberries, basil and balsamic glaze

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Grilled Asian Corn with peanuts

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Grilled Watermelon with arugula, feta and balsamic glaze

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Crowd pic

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Veggie Pizza – Garlic naan bread, red pepper hummus, grilled veggies topped with goat cheese

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Grilled pound cake and pineapple

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Grilled German Potato Salad

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Grilled veggies with garlic couscous topped with basil

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crowd pics

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Zucchini & tomato salad with ricotta, Parmesan and pesto

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Hawaiian Rice – cooked in coconut milk, golden raisin, macadamia nuts and green onions

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Mango & pineapple salsa

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Crowd Pics

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Grilled romaine with mango vinaigrette, shredded jicama, pineapple, red pepper and black sesame seeds

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Me – having fun with the microphone….I love being on the Microphone 😛 

Chef Amy

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Planking????

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Do you “Plank”?

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I am talking about cedar planking, using cedar planks for cooking on your grill 🙂

This was another part of my cooking class, using cedar planks and cedar papers.

Cooking on cedar planks is really a lot of fun, instead of me trying to explain this is a great website that will give you all information you will need.

http://www.cedargrilling.com/art.htm

The salmon that I used is Skuna Bay Salmon and if you have never had it you really need to try to find it in your area, we are the only store that carries it in our area.  It’s mild, buttery, fresh and tender, it really is the best salmon I have ever had, check out the website for Skuna Bay Salmon.

http://www.skunasalmon.com/

Few more picture of the Class, grilling the salmon planks and the delicious out come 🙂

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This marinade is so good, and really easy, you can double it and keep it in your fridge for up to 2 weeks.  It was great on the salmon, but also very good on the Cod, Shrimp and Scallops, very one just loved it.
This also would be great on grilled veggies and slice crusty bread, just brush over the bread then grill the slices…YUM!!!

Garlic, Lemon, Dill Seafood Marinade

  • Difficulty: easy
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1/2 cup olive oil
4 large cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 tsp. ground black pepper

1 pound seafood – Fish, Shrimp or Scallops work well

Mix together oil, garlic, dill, lemon zest, salt and pepper, place seafood in a ziploc bag and pour marinade over top and set aside for 15 – 30 minutes.

Cook as you desire.

Also I did cod with roasted red pepper strips and asparagus in the Cedar papers and grilled them.   This marinade would be great on that too, but what I did for the class is just tossed everything in olive oil, salt, pepper and grated fresh garlic…very good as well 🙂

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Orzo Salad with Basil and Tomatoes

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Great Summer Salad!!

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Last I had a cooking class at one of our stores, using Fresh Herbs was one the points for the class.
Picture of the class, a few more came after I got started, it was a great turn out 🙂

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This was one of the recipes I did, I love using this really as a base with so many options at your finger tips.

You can certainly serve as is, or add fresh grilled veggies chopped, add cubes of fresh mozzarella instead of feta, or shredded fresh Parmesan cheese, or slice pepperoni, salami, cube ham or turkey.  And what about Grilled Shrimp, thin slices of grilled flat iron steak even chunks of grilled salmon there are endless possibilities!!

Along with other fresh herbs you could add as well!!

Everyone at my class love it as is and a friend of my mine made it last week for his work’s cook out and it was hit with them as well.  Enjoy if you make it!!

Orzo Salad with Basil and Tomatoes

  • Servings: 4-6
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

1-2 cup grape tomatoes, quartered

2 cups orzo, cooked

3 tablespoons olive oil

½ teaspoon coarse ground black pepper

1/3 cup basil, chopped

1 tablespoon fresh oregano, chopped

½ cup Feta cheese, ¼ in cubes or crumbled

Salt to taste
Gently toss all ingredients together, serve at room temp.  And of course you can add other veggies, cheeses or fresh herbs as you like 🙂

Grilling Marinade

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Flank-Steak 2

 

It’s summer time and grilling is in full force, well except if you live here in the Ohio valley we need a canoe to get to the grill 🙂   It just will not stop raining…but today

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And the Flowers are blooming

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So if you love grilling just as much as I do, then act quick in between the rainy days and make this easy marinade.

This is great on beef, chicken or pork.

All you need is

1/2 cup olive oil
4 green onions, rough chopped
1/4 cup lime juice
1/2 tsp. cumin
1/3 cup soy sauce
2 large garlic cloves
1/2 tsp. red pepper flakes
3 tbsp. dark brown sugar

Place all ingredients in the blender or food processor for 1 minute, pour over meat and let marinate.

If you are using Flank Steak (as I did) or Flat Iron – marinade over night or at least for 6 hours, Chicken or Pork – 4 to 6 hours, or you can leave them overnight as well.

Okay now start your GRILLS!!!!!! 😛

Enjoy!!!

Summer Grilling Recipe #1

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Well as summer is here and the grills start to get cleaned and great smells permeate the air 😛
I do love me something grilled, so as the summer goes on I will be posting some easy grilling recipes.

This one is just dang simple…who doesn’t like potatoes and onions on the grill 🙂

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I’ve been wanting to do a little grilled so called potato salad…

And I picked up some Colman’s Original English Mustard…it has a kick and I like that!!

I’ve been wondering what to do with it so I came up with this…

Ingredients

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Chopped my potatoes and onions

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In a large bowl add, vinegar, mustard, brown sugar & oil

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Whisk it

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add potatoes and onions

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stir to coat and let set for a least an hour

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Put into a grill basket, keep the access dressing for later

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Done

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add a little more dressing just to coat once finished, then serve

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Recipe

4 potatoes, cubed in 1 inch pieces
1-2 large sweet onions, 1/2 inch slices, then in half again

you don’t want them to small but not too big either, remember your onions will shrink up so keep 1/2 inch strips about 3 inches long.

Marinade 
5 tsp. Colman’s Original English Mustard*
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
3 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
3 tbsp. brown sugar

In a large bowl add all ingredients for marinade and whisk together, add potatoes and onions and toss to fully coat, set aside for a least one hour, stir to coat every 10-15 minutes.

Add potatoes and onions to grill basket, reserving the marinade.  Grill on low stirring mixture everything few minutes.  As potatoes and onions cook drizzle the extra marinade over top each time until potatoes are tender and cooked through. 

Extra Dressing

3 tsp. Colman’s Original English Mustard*
2 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
1 tbsp. brown sugar
add  the mustard, vinegar and sugar all to a small bowl and whisk together, toss with grilled potatoes and onions and serve.

I hope you will try this next time you grill out…Enjoy!!!

*Note – If you cannot find the Colman’s in a “Mustard” form and can only find it in dry form, just take the amount in the recipe in dry and add just a little water until you make mustard 🙂

Tomato Soup & Grilled Cheese

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Growing up I think everyone at some point in time had tomato soup and grilled cheese, of course unless your Mom made everything from scratch most likely you got good old Campbell’s.  Don’t get me wrong Campbell’s is a great product, but who knew how really simple making homemade tomato soup was, so when I feel like I want something from my childhood this is what I do.  You can also serve cold or at room temp. For a party I served the soup in tiny cups and made grilled cheese sticks for convenient dipping, it was a hit for sure!!!

Tomato Soup

1/4 cup sweet or red onion, diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 can (14.5oz) whole peeled tomatoes, give them a little squish
1 tbsp. olive oil
1/4 cup heavy whipping cream

In a medium saucepan over medium heat add oil and onions, cook onion until translucent, stirring often not to burn.  Then add garlic, cooking and stirring for about 30 seconds, now add the tomatoes and their juices, bring to a boil then let simmer for about 20 minutes.  Add mixture to a blender and pulse to blend, make sure the lid is vented, you can take the center cap out of the lid, place a towel over top.  Once blended add cream and blend again, pour back into saucepan, keep warm, season with salt and pepper.

At this point you can serve or you may want to top it with some fresh chopped basil or chives, what about some sour cream, goat cheese, queso fresco or for me I like some crumbled gorgonzola cheese.  But you can top this soup with anything you can think of, plus its great to dip your grilled cheese in it too.

Grilled Cheese

1. Start with some good hearty bread, sliced and butter the outsides.

2. Cheese, there really is no one cheese that would not be good inside, for me I love changing it up, these are some cheeses I’ve used, provolone, smoked provolone & mozzarella, fontina, sharp white cheddar, Muenster, then my favorites are manchego and brie.  Brie with pears and some honey so good too, also crispy bacon…delicious

So what ever you use for your favorite grilled cheese go for it, but do me a flavor think outside the box!!!
There are so many wonderful cheeses out there, the next time you’re in the store take time to look around the deli area for the specialty cheeses, ask your deli server to help you pick something out, let them know you want to explore the wonderful cheeses of the world.

Let me know what you some of your favorite cheeses and combinations are…Enjoy!!