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Recipes

RECIPES

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While we navigate our way through this strange and difficult time we’ve heard from many of you that you are cooking as a way to stay busy, be productive and find enjoyment. At Sweet Basil we know that new culinary adventures are possible every day. For all of these reasons we have put together for you our customers, a group of menus and recipes from our archives. From a variety of our favorites, these are simply for you to pick and choose to try new yummy recipes.

We encourage you to experiment, use the ingredients you have, don’t be bound by the specifics (unless you’re baking) if there are ingredients you don’t have or don’t care for. We’re hoping you’ll have fun, and maybe give us feedback about recipes you’d like to see going forward.

This is our first group of menus and recipes, we will post more in a week or so. While we are in stay-at-home mode, you can get in your kitchen and have some fun!

Menu 1:

Creamy Tomato & Basil Soup Oven-roasted Salmon with Martini Sauce Green Beans with Pecans Orzo Risotto Cinnamon Ice Cream

See Full Recipe

Menu 2:

Crisp Romaine with Orange-Cumin Dressing Sesame Steak & Scallion Kebabs Coconut Rice Roasted Vegetables with Balsamic Syrup Lemon Olive Oil Cake

See Full Recipe

Menu 3:

Bean & Cheese Nachos Chicken & Green Chili Enchiladas Mexican Street Corn No-Bake Key Lime Cheesecakes

See Full Recipe

Menu 4:

Butter Lettuce Salad with Blue Cheese & Walnuts Tri-Tip Sirloin Roast Pesto Pasta with Potatoes & Green Beans Raspberry Cheesecake Brownies

See Full Recipe

Menu 5:

Salad of Balsamic Dressing, Apples & Cheese Turkey Stroganoff with Noodles Steamed Broccoli Strawberry Ice Cream

See Full Recipe

ROAST GARLIC

Roasting garlic dramatically tames its “garlickyness.” Thus, you have a world of flavor available even if you don’t consider yourself a fan. It is wonderful in soups, dips, dressings and spreads. We’ve put a recipe for Roasted Garlic from Sweet Basil Cooks – A Second Helping.

METHOD
1 Cut off the top of a garlic bulb, exposing the tops of the cloves 2 Drizzle with olive oil 3 Place the bulb in a garlic roaster or wrap in foil to enclose completely 4 Bake at 425 F for 40 minutes 5 Allow the garlic to cool completely 6 Squeeze the baked cloves to get the roasted garlic out of the skins

The roasted garlic will keep, covered, for a week in the refrigerator.

A Second Helping

OLATHE SWEET SWEET ELOTE SALAD

In 2014 Martie Sullivan, owner of Sweet Basil Gourmetware & Cooking School in Scottsdale, Arizona made a salad to celebrate the arrival of Olathe Sweet Sweet Corn from Colorado to the Valley of the Sun. This year she will move the celebration to her new Sweet Basil Market Café inside the store and put it on the menu. (Elote means “cob” in Spanish.)

Serves 2 Side Salads or 1 Entrée Salad

INGREDIENTS 1 ear Olathe Sweet Sweet Corn – husk just before using ½ cup whole milk 1 tsp ancho chile powder ¼ tsp cumin ¼ tsp sugar 1 cup romaine – torn into bite-sized pieces 1 cup fresh spinach – torn into bite-sized pieces 2 green onions (scallions) sliced white & green ¼” 2 large radishes – matchstick sliced 1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese 1/3 cup black beans 1 avocado – diced

PREPARATION 1. Preheat oven to 325° 2. Cut two 2” pieces of corn from the center of the cob 3. Remove remaining kernels from the cob and place in a large mixing bowl 4. In a small mixing bowl combine milk, ancho chile powder, cumin and sugar 5. Place cob pieces in muffin pan cups (If muffin tin cups are shallow, rotate cobs half way through cooking) 6. Add milk mixture to near top of cup. (fill remaining cups with water) 7. Bake cobs in oven 14 minutes. Remove. Let cool. 8. Add greens, vegetables, beans, cheese and avocado to the large mixing bowl

olathe sweet sweet elote salad

HONEY LIME DRESSING INGREDIENTS

¼ cup fresh lime juice 2 tbs honey 2 tbs minced cilantro 1 large garlic clove, peeled & minced 1 tsp fresh jalapeno pepper, seeded & minced

PREPARATION 1. Combine all ingredients in a medium mixing bowl and whisk vigorously 2. Pour into the large mixing bowl

PLATING 1. Add dressing to the salad and toss gently but thoroughly 2. Serve with cob garnish

MARINATED GRILLED SHRIMP (Demonstrated by Martie Sullivan at ARIZONA PBS EIGHT’S GREAT GRILLFEST at the Trilogy Golf Club at Vistancia Sunday, November 2, 2014)

HONEY LIME DRESSING INGREDIENTS

MARINATED GRILLED SHRIMP – Makes 6 Servings

INGREDIENTS 3 cloves garlic, minced 1/3 cup olive oil 1/4 cup tomato sauce 2 TBSP red wine vinegar 2 TBSB fresh basil, chopped 1/2 tsp salt 1/4 tsp cayenne pepper 2 pounds shrimp, cleaned and deveined

PREPARATION 1. Combine all ingredients except shrimp in a medium size bowl and mix well 2. Add shrimp to bowl and toss to coat 3. Oil the grill or grill grid and heat the grill to medium high 4. Place shrimp on the grill and cook 2-3 minutes. Turn shrimp and cook for an additional 2-3 minutes 5. Remove shrimp from grill and serve

Amy Barnes’ BLUE CHEESE JALAPEÑO POPPERS – Makes 12 Poppers

INGREDIENTS 2 eggs, beaten ¼ cup milk 1 cup panko bread crumbs 1 tsp salt 1 tsp ground black pepper ½ TBSP garlic powder 12 jalapeno chile peppers ½ cup crumbled blue cheese

PREPARATION 1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. 2. In a small bowl, mix together the egg and milk. In a separate bowl, mix together the panko crumbs, salt, pepper, and garlic powder. 3. Cut jalapeños in half lengthwise. Remove the seeds. Stuff each jalapeño half with equal portions of the blue cheese. Place the halves back together and secure with toothpicks. Dip each stuffed jalapeño in the egg mixture and then coat with the panko mixture. Arrange the breaded peppers on a baking sheet. 4. Bake in preheated oven until golden brown, about 15 minutes.

COFFEE & SPICE RUBBED PORK TENDERLOIN WITH CHIPOTLE CREAM SAUCE – 4 Servings

INGREDIENTS

For the pork

1 TBSP freshly ground coffee

2 tsp golden brown sugar

2 tsp freshly ground black pepper

½ tsp ground coriander

½ tsp dried oregano

½ tsp kosher salt

Extra virgin olive oil

1 pork tenderloin (about 2 lbs)

For the sauce

Extra virgin olive oil

1 minced shallot

1 minced garlic clove

½ cup red wine

½ cup low sodium beef broth

1 TBSP chipotle purée

½ cup cream

Kosher salt and ground black pepper to taste

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line a low-rimmed baking sheet with foil.
  2. In a small bowl, combine the ground coffee, brown sugar, black pepper, coriander, oregano, and salt. Trim the “silver skin” from the pork. Place pork on the baking sheet. Generously coat the pork with the coffee rub and drizzle with olive oil. Place the pan with the pork in the preheated oven and roast for 30 minutes, or until an instant read thermometer registers 155 degrees for medium well (the pork will continue to cook 5 more degrees after removing from oven).
  3. While the pork is roasting, make the sauce: Place a saucepan over medium-high heat. Drizzle extra virgin olive oil over bottom of pan to coat. When oil “shimmers,” add shallots and sauté until lightly browned. Add garlic and cook and stir 1 minute. Add wine and cook until pan is deg lazed and liquid is reduced by one-half. Add beef broth and chipotle purée. Cook and stir until slightly thickened. (Can be made ahead up to this point. Just before serving, reheat over low heat.) To finish the sauce, add the cream to the sauce and heat over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until thickened to sauce consistency. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Let the roasted pork rest for 15 minutes before carving. Slice crosswise into ½-inch slices. Arrange the pork on a serving platter. Spoon the sauce over the pork slices and serve.

MISO-GLAZED MAHI MAHI WITH STIR-FRIED RED RICE – 4 servings

INGREDIENTS

Red Rice

1 cup red rice

2 scant cups water

2 TBSP butter, divided

1 TBSP sesame oil

1 large red onion thinly sliced

8 oz sliced cremini mushrooms

1 TBSP fresh ginger, minced

1 TBSP garlic, minced

5 oz baby spinach

3 TBSP soy sauce

Mahi Mahi

½ cup mirin

½ cup sake

6 TBSP white or yellow miso paste

2 TBSP sugar

4 tsp toasted sesame oil

4 mahi mahi fillets, about 6 oz each

PREPARATION

  1. Make the red rice: In a medium saucepan, cover the rice with the water and bring to a boil. Cover the saucepan and cook over low heat for about 25 minutes, until the rice is tender and the water is absorbed. Spread the rice out on a baking sheet and cool completely.
  2. In the smallest saucepan you have, combine the mirin and sake, and bring to a boil over high heat. Boil 20 seconds, taking care not to boil off much of the liquid, then turn the heat to low and stir in the miso and sugar. Whisk over medium heat without letting the mixture boil until the sugar has dissolved. Remove from the heat and whisk in the sesame oil. Allow cooling. Transfer to a wide glass or stainless steel bowl or baking dish.
  3. Pat the fish fillets dry and brush or rub on both sides with the marinade, then place them in the baking dish and turn them over a few times in the marinade remaining in the dish. Cover with plastic wrap and marinate for 2 to 3 hours, or for up to a day.
  4. When the rice has cooled, heat a skillet or wok over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon butter and the sesame oil. Add the red onion and cook for 2 minutes, then stir in the mushrooms, ginger, and garlic, and cook until lightly browned, about 3-4 minutes.
  5. Heat the remaining 1 tablespoon butter in the skillet. Stir in the spinach and stir-fry over high heat until wilted, about 1-2 minutes. Stir in the rice, then the soy sauce and stir well. Add more soy sauce, if you like.
  6. Preheat the broiler on high heat. Line a sheet pan with foil and oil the foil.
  7. Tap each fillet against the sides of the bowl or dish so excess marinade will slide off. Place skin side up on the baking sheet, and put the baking sheet about 6 inches from the broiler. Broil for 2 to 3 minutes on each side, until the surface browns and blackens in spots.

ROASTED SALMON BITES WITH SUN-DRIED TOMATO VINAIGRETTE – 8-10 Servings

INGREDIENTS

For the sauce

2 sun-dried tomatoes, in oil, chopped

2 TBSP red wine vinegar

garlic cloves, smashed

1 TBSP basil, chiffonade

¼ cup olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

For the salmon

16 oz skinless salmon fillet

cut into bite-size cubes

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dried thyme

Extra virgin olive oil

7 basil leaves, chiffonade (cut into thin strips) for garnish

Wooden picks for serving

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat or parchment.
  2. Make the sauce: Place the sun-dried tomatoes, vinegar, garlic and basil in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth. Slowly add the olive oil and blend to emulsify. Season with salt and pepper. (Can be made one day ahead. Store in the refrigerator in an airtight container. Bring to room temperature before serving.)
  3. Roast the salmon: Season the salmon pieces on both sides with the kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper, and a little ground thyme. Place on the parchment and drizzle with extra virgin olive oil. Roast in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes, or to desired doneness.
  4. To serve: Spoon some of the vinaigrette onto a serving platter. Top with the roasted salmon pieces. Place a toothpick in each piece of salmon. Sprinkle with chiffonade basil for garnish.

STEAKHOUSE SPINACH GRATIN – 4 Servings

INGREDIENTS

3 TBSP unsalted butter, divided, plus more for greasing casserole

1 cup fresh breadcrumbs

⅓ cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese

2 tsp vegetable oil, divided

2 lbs baby spinach

⅔ cup heavy cream

⅔ cup half-and-half

¼ cup diced yellow onion

1 TBSP plus 1 tsp all-purpose flour

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

1 bay leaf

1 fresh thyme sprig, plus leaves from 1 thyme sprig

½ cup grated Gruyère cheese

Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat an oven to 400 degrees. Butter a 9½x7-inch oval gratin dish.
  2. Place a skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons butter to melt. Add the breadcrumbs and cook, stirring, until lightly toasted, about 6 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the Parmigiano-Reggiano. Let cool to room temperature.
  3. Place a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon of the oil and heat to shimmering. Add half the spinach and cook, stirring occasionally, until just wilted, 3 to 4 minutes. Transfer to a colander and drain, pressing out any excess water with the back of a spoon. Transfer to a large bowl. Repeat with the remaining 1 teaspoon oil and spinach.
  4. In a small saucepan over medium heat, warm the cream and half-and-half; do not allow the mixture to boil.
  5. Place a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter to melt. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until translucent but not brown, 5 to 6 minutes. Add the flour and cook, stirring constantly, until nutty and just golden, about 1 minute.
  6. Slowly whisk in the cream mixture. Add the nutmeg, bay leaf and thyme sprig and simmer, whisking constantly, until thickened, about 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and let stand for 5 minutes.
  7. Strain the cream mixture into a bowl. Return the mixture to the saucepan. Place over medium heat and stir in the Gruyère until melted.
  8. Fold the sauce into the spinach and season with salt and white pepper. Transfer to the prepared gratin dish and top with the toasted breadcrumbs. Bake in the preheated oven until the gratin is golden brown on top, about 10 minutes. Sprinkle with the thyme leaves.

ROASTED VEGETABLE ENCHILADAS WITH TOMATILLO SALSA 4 – 6 servings

INGREDIENTS

For the sauce

1 lb (6 to 8) tomatillos, husked and rinsed

1 medium white onion, sliced about ¼-inch thick

3 garlic cloves, peeled

2 jalapeños, stemmed

1½ TBSP vegetable oil, plus extra for roasting the vegetables and brushing or spraying the tortillas

2 cups vegetable or chicken broth, plus a little extra if needed

½ cup Mexican crema (see below), crème fraîche or sour cream

For the enchiladas

8 cups cubed vegetables (½-inch cubes) (chayote, carrots, white or red onions, small turnips, kohlrabi, mushrooms and peeled butternut squash)

Salt

12 corn tortillas

⅔ cup shredded asadero or Monterey Jack cheese

½ onion, thinly sliced and separated into rings, for garnish

Fresh cilantro sprigs, for garnish

PREPARATION

  1. Make the sauce: Preheat the broiler.
  2. Place the tomatillos, sliced onion, peeled garlic and chiles on a rimmed baking sheet 4 inches below a hot broiler until the tomatillos are soft and blotchy black on one side, 4 or 5 minutes. Turn everything over and roast the other side. Remove and reduce the oven temperature to 400 degrees.
  3. Scrape the tomatillo mixture into a blender or food processor. Process to a smooth purée.
  4. Place a 4-quart saucepan over medium high heat. Add 1 tablespoon oil and heat to “shimmering.” Add the purée all at once. Stir nearly constantly until darker and thicker, about 7 minutes. Add the broth and crema, reduce the heat to medium-low, partially cover and simmer for about 30 minutes. Thin, if necessary, with broth or water to a sauce consistency. Season with salt.
  5. Roast the vegetables. Line a rimmed baking sheet with a silicone baking mat or parchment.
  6. Spread the cubed vegetables on the baking sheet. Drizzle with oil, sprinkle with salt and stir to coat evenly. Roast in the preheated oven, stirring occasionally, until the carrots are crunchy-tender, about 25 minutes.
  7. Lightly brush both sides of each tortilla with oil. Slide into a plastic bag and microwave on high (100%) for 1 minute to warm and soften.
  8. Assemble the enchiladas: Smear 1 cup of the sauce over the bottom of a 13×9-inch baking dish. Working quickly so the tortillas stay hot and pliable, roll a portion of the roasted vegetables into each tortilla, then line them all up in the baking dish. Spoon the remaining sauce over the enchiladas, then sprinkle with the cheese. Bake the enchiladas in the oven until they are heated through (the cheese will have begun to brown), about 10 minutes. Garnish with onion rings and cilantro sprigs.

CHOCOLATE GRAND MARNIER TORTE – Serves 8

INGREDIENTS

Torte

½ cup sugar, divided, plus additional for dusting

1¾ cups whole almonds, finely ground

1 tsp cinnamon

3 oz fine-quality dark bittersweet chocolate, pulsed in food processor until coarsely ground

½ cup Mexican crema (see below), crème fraîche or sour cream

3 TBSP Grand Marnier

1 TBSP orange zest

5 large egg yolks

4 large egg whites

½ tsp salt

Icing

3 oz fine-quality bittersweet chocolate

2 TBSP Grand Marnier

¾ stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter 9-inch spring form pan and dust with sugar, knocking out excess.
  2. 2In a medium bowl, stir together ground almonds, cinnamon, and chocolate.
  3. In a medium size bowl, using an electric mixer beat the Grand Marnier, orange zest, and yolks with ¼ cup sugar until thick and pale.
  4. In a large bowl, using clean beaters, whip whites with salt until they just hold soft peaks.
  5. Gradually beat in remaining ¼ cup sugar and beat until whites just hold stiff peaks. Stir one-third of whites into yolk mixture to lighten, and then fold in remaining whites in 2 more batches. Fold in ground almond mixture.
  6. Pour batter into pan and bake in middle of oven until golden and a tester comes out clean, about 45 minutes. Cool torte in mold on a rack 10 minutes, then invert onto rack and cool completely.
  7. To make the icing: In a small heavy saucepan over very low heat, melt chocolate with Grand Marnier and 1 tablespoon butter, stirring. Remove from heat and add remaining 5 tablespoons butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, stirring until smooth. Transfer icing to a bowl and chill, covered, until slightly thickened and spreadable, about 30 minutes.
  8. Spread icing over torte with a small metal spatula. Chill cake until icing is set, at least 1 hour. Transfer cake to a platter and bring to room temperature before serving

TEQUILA SHRIMP & ROASTED SALMON WITH MARTINI SAUCE – 4 Servings

2 cups dry vermouth

2 cups dry vermouth

¼ cup minced shallots

2 tsp coarsely crushed juniper berries

1 tsp coarsely crushed green peppercorns

8 oz bottled clam juice

¾ cup whipping cream

3 TBSP butter

For the salmon

4 skinless boneless salmon fillets, 4 oz each

Olive oil

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dried thyme

For the shrimp

12 large shrimp, peeled and deveined

1 tsp kosher salt

Freshly ground pepper

2 TBSP unsalted butter

½ cup tequila

¾ cup sour cream

To finish

¼ cup sliced pimiento-stuffed green olives

2 TBSP dry gin

2 TBSP fresh lemon juice

1 TBSP chopped fresh chives

PREPARATION

  1. Make the sauce: Combine vermouth, shallots, juniper berries, and peppercorns in small heavy saucepan. Place the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Boil until liquid is reduced to ¼ cup, about 12 minutes. Add clam juice and boil until reduced by half, about 8 minutes. Add cream and boil until mixture is reduced to ¾ cup, about 8 minutes. Add butter 1 tablespoon at a time, whisking until melted before adding more. Strain sauce through fine-mesh strainer. Return sauce to saucepan. (Can be made 2 hours ahead. Keep at room temperature.)
  2. For the salmon: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with a silicone mat or parchment.
  3. Season the salmon on both sides with salt, pepper, and thyme and place on the sheet pan. Drizzle with olive oil. Roast the salmon in the preheated oven for 15 minutes or until just cooked through.
  4. Rewarm the sauce over low heat. Stir in the olives, gin and lemon juice. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Keep warm over low heat.
  5. Toss the shrimp with kosher salt and ¾ teaspoon coarsely ground pepper. Place a large heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the butter to melt. When the foam subsides, add the shrimp and sauté shrimp, turning, until pink and just cooked through, 3 to 5 minutes. Reduce heat and add tequila, then increase heat to medium-high. Tilt skillet over gas burner to ignite tequila (or ignite with a long match; use caution, as flames may shoot up high). Cook, shaking skillet gently once or twice, until flames subside. Remove from heat and stir in the sour cream.
  6. To serve: Place salmon on plates or serving platter. Spoon the shrimp over the salmon. Spoon the sauce over. Garnish with chives.

GRILLED ASPARAGUS WITH MILLIONAIRE BACON – 4 Servings

For the sauce

4 slices bacon

1 TBSP brown sugar

1 lb asparagus, trimmed

Olive oil

Freshly ground black pepper and kosher or sea salt

PREPARATION

  1. Prepare the bacon: Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with foil and place a rack over the foil.
  2. Place bacon slices on the rack. Sprinkle the brown sugar over the bacon. Cook in the preheated oven until crispy, about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool. Crumble the bacon.
  3. Heat grill to high.
  4. Place asparagus on a sheet pan and season with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil. Grill the asparagus until nicely charred, but still tender-crisp. Cover loosely with foil.
  5. To serve: Arrange the asparagus on a platter or plates. Distribute the bacon over the asparagus.

ANGEL HAIR PASTA WITH WALNUTS, PARMESAN & FRESH PARSLEY – 6 Servings

16 oz angel hair pasta

⅔ cup chopped toasted walnuts, 2 TBSP reserved for garnish

¼ cup olive oil

5 garlic cloves, minced

½ cup low-sodium chicken broth

½ cup chopped parsley leaves, plus more for garnish

½ tsp salt

½ tsp fresh ground black pepper

1 oz Parmesan, grated (about ¾ cup), divided

PREPARATION

  1. Cook the pasta: Bring a large pot of water to a rolling boil over high heat. Add 1 tablespoon of salt. Add the pasta and cook for about 4 minutes. Drain the cooked pasta. Transfer to a bowl and toss with a little olive oil and salt and pepper. Cover with plastic wrap.
  2. Make the sauce: Place a small dry skillet over medium-high heat. Add the walnuts and toast until fragrant, stirring frequently, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove from heat.
  3. Place a large skillet over low heat. Add the olive oil and heat to shimmering. Add the garlic and cook, stirring until soft and fragrant, 1 minute (be careful not to burn it). Add the cooked pasta to the skillet, add the broth, all but 2 tablespoons of the walnuts, the parsley, salt and pepper and toss to combine, cooking over low heat for 1 to 2 minutes. Add ½ cup grated Parmesan and toss to combine.
  4. To serve: Twirl the pasta on plates. Sprinkle with remaining cheese, the reserved walnuts and more parsley.

RUSTIC PEAR TART WITH VANILLA ICE CREAM CHOCOLATE SAUCE – 12 servings

For the dough

½ lb cold unsalted butter

2 cups unbleached flour

¼ cup sugar

½ tsp kosher salt

¼ - ½ cup ice water

For the tart

3 fresh pears, cored and sliced paper thin

1 tsp sugar

½ tsp cinnamon

Dash of nutmeg

¼ tsp almond extract

Powdered sugar for dusting

For the ice cream

2 cups heavy cream, well chilled

1 cup whole milk

¾ cup sugar

1 TBSP vanilla bean paste

For the sauce

½ lb semisweet chocolate, chopped

1 cup heavy cream

1 TBSP unsalted butter

½ tsp ancho chili powder (or to taste)

For the almonds

½ cup sliced almonds

¼ tsp chili powder

¼ tsp ground cinnamon

PREPARATION

  1. Make the tart dough: Cut the butter into ½-inch cubes and place in freezer while assembling the remaining ingredients. Place the flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade. Pulse a few times to combine. Add the cold butter. Pulse 15 times, or until the butter particles are the size of small peas.
  2. With the motor running, add ¼ cup ice water through the feed tube. Process for about 10 seconds, stopping the machine before the dough becomes a solid mass (add more water, if needed).
  3. Turn the contents of the bowl onto a piece of plastic wrap, pressing any loose particles into the mass of dough. Roughly form the dough into 2 disks. Cover the dough completely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour. (Maybe refrigerated up to 2 days or frozen for up to 2 weeks.)
  4. Roll each disk on a lightly floured surface to a 12-inch free-form circle. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet. Refrigerate until ready to use.
  5. Prepare the filling: Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
  6. Combine the pear slices, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, and almond extract. Arrange the pear filling on each dough round, leaving a 1½-inch border of dough all around. Raise the dough border to enclose the sides of the filling, letting it drape over the fruit. Gently pinch the soft pleats that form the draping to secure the edges. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the dough is golden, making sure the bottom of the crust is cooked. Cool on a rack for about 10 minutes.
  7. For the ice cream: Place all ice cream ingredients in a blender and blend to combine. Pour the cream-milk mixture into the ice cream freezer bowl; place the mixing paddle in the bowl and the cover over the bowl. Turn on the machine and allow it to run until the mixture is thick and frozen, about 25-30 minutes. Transfer the ice cream to a freezer-proof container to continue to freeze until ready to serve.
  8. Make the sauce: Place the chopped chocolate in a medium bowl. Place the cream, butter and chili powder in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Heat to almost boiling. Remove the pan from the heat and pour the hot mixture over the chocolate. Let stand for 1 minute. Using a rubber spatula, mix until the chocolate is melted and the mixture is smooth. Cool to room temperature.
  9. Toast the almonds: Place a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add the almonds and cook, tossing frequently, just until fragrant. Remove from the heat and transfer to a small bowl. Add the chili powder and cinnamon and toss to coat.
  10. To serve: Cut each tart into 6 wedges. Arrange the tart slices on plates or a serving platter. Dust with powdered sugar and sprinkle with the spiced almonds. Serve the ice cream and chocolate sauce on the side.

PAN SEARED STEAK WITH SAUCE DIANE – 4 Servings

4 New York strip steaks, 6 oz each

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

8 TBSP butter, divided

2 tsp vegetable oil, divided

4 shallots, peeled and minced

10 button mushrooms, thinly sliced

3 TBSP Dijon mustard

3 TBSP Worcestershire sauce

4 TBSP demi-glace

3 TBSP Madeira wine

2 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

2 TBSP chopped fresh parsley, plus some for garnish

PREPARATION

  1. Season steaks with salt and pepper. Place a medium sauté pan over high heat. Add 4 tablespoons of the butter and 1 teaspoon of the oil. Add the steaks and sear the steaks on all sides (about 7 – 8 minutes total cooking time for medium rare). Transfer steaks to a warmed platter, tenting with foil to retain heat.
  2. Add remaining oil and 2 tablespoons butter to the same pan over medium-high heat. Add shallots and mushrooms and cook, stirring, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Stir in the mustard, Worcestershire, and demi-glace. Add Madeira, lemon juice, and parsley. Remove pan from heat and stir in the remaining butter. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  3. To serve: Thickly slice steak and arrange on a serving platter. Spoon sauce over steaks, and garnish with chopped parsley.

PETITE BAKED POTATOES WITH CRÈME FRAÎCHE & CHIVES – 8 Servings

8 small (no larger than 3 inches long) russet or Yukon gold potatoes, scrubbed

Canola or vegetable oil

Kosher salt

3 TBSP unsalted butter, cut into 8 pieces

Freshly ground black pepper

8 oz crème fraîche

Fresh chives, minced (for garnish)

PREPARATION

  1. Heat oven to 500 degrees. Line a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat or parchment.
  2. Pierce potatoes in 2 places with a fork. Place potatoes in a large bowl and drizzle with oil. Generously season with salt. Toss to coat. Transfer potatoes to sheet pan and roast in the preheated oven for 30 – 40 minutes or until fork tender. Remove potatoes from oven.
  3. Cut a small slice from one short side of each potato so that the potato can stand on its own, short side down. Cut a deep ‘X’ in the top (un-cut short side) of each potato. Pinch top of potato to soften.
  4. Season tops with salt and freshly ground pepper. Place a piece of butter on top to melt. (Can be made up to 1 hour ahead to this point. Keep uncovered in a 190-degree oven to stay warm.)
  5. Just before serving spoon some crème fraîche over the top of each, letting it melt and run down the potato. Transfer to plates and garnish with fresh chives. Serve immediately.

DOUBLE CHOCOLATE CAKE WITH BOURBON WHIPPED CREAM – 12 Servings

Cake

¾ cup sour cream

4 large eggs

½ cup water

½ cup vegetable oil

1 box chocolate cake mix

1 small box instant chocolate pudding

1 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Shaved chocolate for serving

Fresh mint sprigs for serving

Whipped cream

1 cup whipping cream

3 TBSP granulated sugar (or to taste)

1 tsp vanilla bean paste

1 TBSP bourbon

PREPARATION

  1. Make the cake: Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray a 10-inch round Bundt pan with cooking spray.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, use a wire whisk to beat the sour cream, eggs, water, and oil together until mixed. Add cake mix and pudding mix. Beat about 2 minutes. Add chocolate chips and stir in. Pour the batter into the prepared Bundt pan.
  3. Bake for 45 – 55 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center of the cake comes out clean. Remove from oven and invert onto a cooling rack.
  4. Make the whipped cream: Beat whipping cream with the granulated sugar and vanilla to soft peaks. Fold in the bourbon. Refrigerate until ready to serve.
  5. To serve: Slice cake into 12 slices. Place on serving plates. Spoon a dollop of whipped cream over each cake slice. Garnish with shaved chocolate and fresh mint.

CRANBERRY-ORANGE SCONES – Makes 16

4 cups plus ¼ cup all-purpose flour, divided

¼ cup sugar, plus additional for tops

2 TBSP baking powder

2 TBSP kosher salt

1 TBSP grated orange zest

3 sticks unsalted butter (¾ lb) chilled and cut into ½-inch pieces

4 large eggs, lightly beaten

1 cup cold heavy cream

1 cup dried cranberries

1 egg beaten with 2 TBSP milk

½ cup powdered sugar

4 tsp orange juice

PREPARATION

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Line a sheet pan with a silicone baking mat or parchment.
  2. In the bowl of an electric mixer combine 4 cups flour, ¼ cup sugar, baking powder, salt and zest. Add the cold butter and mix at low speed until the butter is the size of peas.
  3. In a separate bowl, combine the eggs and heavy cream. With the mixer on low speed slowly add the cream mixture. Mix until just combined (should look lumpy).
  4. In a small bowl, combine the cranberries with the remaining ¼ cup flour. Add this to the dough and mix on low until combined.
  5. Turn dough onto a floured work surface. Knead a few time and form into a ball. Flour a rolling pin and roll the dough to ¾-inch thickness. Keep lifting the dough so it doesn’t stick. Roll the dough into a rectangle.
  6. With a bench scraper or sharp knife, cut dough in half lengthwise. Cut in half crosswise. Cut each of the four pieces in half crosswise (to make 8 equal rectangles). Cut each section diagonally in half to form 16 triangles.
  7. Transfer the scones to the prepared sheet pan. Brush the tops with the egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Bake in the preheated oven for 20 – 25 minutes. Let cool slightly.
  8. While the scones are cooling, whisk the powdered sugar with the orange juice. Drizzle over the scones.