Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Warmed peaches, brown butter, Amaretto, mint, almonds, cinnamon. Sounds like a perfect summer dessert to me. What more is there to say?!

 

Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Spiced Amaretto Peaches

Yield: 2 servings

 

3 ripe peaches, washed, cored and sliced thinly

2 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons dark brown sugar

1  2- to 3-inch stick cinnamon

¼ cup Amaretto liqueur

5 fresh mint leaves, chopped finely

2 tablespoons sliced almonds

 

Combine the butter, sugar and cinnamon in a medium sauté pan over medium heat. When the butter begins to brown after 2 or 3 minutes, add the sliced peaches, stir and simmer until tender.

Warm the liqueur in a small saucepan. Carefully add the warmed Amaretto to the sauté pan with the peaches and ignite by tilting the pan away from you. The flames will subside in seconds as the alcohol burns away. Heat and stir until glazed.

To serve, divide sautéed peaches among bowls. Spoon any remaining sauce from the pan over the peaches. Garnish with sliced almonds and some mint.

Black Garlic Aioli

Do you know what’s delicious? Caramelized garlic. Now, imagine it’s caramelized/heated for over a month to achieve intense sweetness. Well, you don’t have to imagine any longer – it’s called black garlic (used often in Asian cuisine) and it’s crave-worthy, eat the whole head raw good. Super Sous and I found some at Trader Joe’s the other day and we made a delicious aioli out of it to pair with roasted brussels sprouts. It’s sweet and almost a big tangy, while being creamy and oh so delicious. Besides Trader Joe’s, black garlic is available at many Asian markets and even online at my favorite spice company, My Spice Sage. I use a mix of grapeseed oil (a neutral oil) and Lucini Italia Premium Select extra-virgin olive oil (my favorite) to get a rich flavor in this aioli. Enjoy!

Black Garlic Aioli

 

Black Garlic Aioli

Yield: 1¼ cups

 

2 large organic egg yolks

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

1/8 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 head black garlic, peeled

½ cup extra-virgin olive oil

½ cup grapeseed oil

1 tablespoon water

 

Add egg yolks, lemon juice, salt, mustard and garlic to a small container or bowl with high sides. (I used the glass container that goes with my French Press.)

Using an immersion blender, blend all ingredients thoroughly.

Very slowly stream the oils into the container or bowl as you continuously blend the liquid with the immersion blender. The liquid will thicken and form the consistency of mayonnaise. When it becomes too thick to blend, add water to thin and continue blending until all the oil has been incorporated.

 

 

 

 

 

Salmon Burgers with Homemade Tartar Sauce

Wild Alaskan salmon is in season! So, next time you purchase some salmon at your local grocery store or fish market, how about making my salmon burgers? They are easy to make and have a nice crispy outside on account of the panko. Mmmmmm.  Plus, the homemade tartar sauce is a delicious treat in and of itself! Sea for yourself!

 

Salmon Burger Panko

Salmon burger in panko before cooking

Salmon Burger with Homemade Tartar Sauce

 

 

Salmon Burger with Homemade Tartar Sauce

Yield: 4 burgers

 

For the burger:

1 pound wild salmon filet, skin, bloodline and pinbones discarded, chopped finely

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh thyme

½ teaspoon kosher salt

¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

2 teaspoons mayonnaise

1 ¼ cup panko bread crumbs, divided

1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

 

Place the salmon, mustard, lemon juice, herbs, salt, pepper, mayonnaise and ¼ cup panko in a large bowl. Using a rubber spatula, fold until well combined.

Place 1 cup panko on a plate.

Form 4 equal sized patties, approximately 3-inches in diameter and 1-inch thick, and press bottom of patties into the panko to coat. Do the same to the opposite side, pressing each patty into the panko.

Place burgers on a parchment-lined tray or plate.

Place a large nonstick sauté pan over medium high heat and add the 1/3 cup olive oil. Let sit over medium-high heat for 1 minute, until the oil shimmers (hot!). Add the burgers and let cook on each side for 1 minute and 30 seconds. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate.

Tartar Sauce:

¼ cup mayonnaise

2 tablespoons cornichon, diced small

½ teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 teaspoons white wine vinegar

½ teaspoon capers, rinsed and chopped roughly

2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh dill

kosher salt, to taste

freshly ground pepper, to taste

 

Add all ingredients to a small bowl and mix to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

 

Burger Assembly:

Tartar sauce

Romaine or Butter Lettuce leaves

Toasted hamburger, optional

Place tartar sauce on bottom and top of hamburger buns and top with burger and lettuce. Alternately, you can eat your salmon burger in between lettuce leaves or on top of a bed of lettuce with tartar sauce drizzled overtop.

Grilled Spiced Okra

Last Sunday, I found some beautiful okra at the Hollywood Farmers Market, so I decided to make a quick meal of it – and I’m glad I did! It was flavorful, spicy, bright and there was none of that okra slime that can occur! I used my grill pan because it was actually cooler in my (un-airconditioned) kitchen than it was outside, but you could also throw these on the grill. Either way, just make sure you eat them right away while they are still a bit crisp and hot off the grill.

Grilled Spiced Okra

 

Grilled Spiced Okra

Yield: 2 servings

 

½ pound okra, washed and dried

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

¼ teaspoon ground cumin

¼ teaspoon ground fennel

1/8 teaspoon ground chipotle

¼ teaspoon kosher salt

freshly ground black pepper, to taste

½ lemon

 

Heat a grill pan over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes, until very hot.

In a medium bowl, mix to combine the okra with the olive oil, cumin, fennel, chipotle, salt and a few grinds of black pepper.

Place on the grill pan and cook for 5 to 6 minutes on one side, until grill marks are acheived. Do not stir. Flip the okra to cook on the opposite side for an additional 5 to 6 minutes.

Remove from grill pan. Squeeze lemon juice over the okra and serve immediately.