Thursday, August 26, 2010

Blueberries, Quiche & Paul Newman, too!

8/11/10 Cook’s Corner
Betty Kaiser

Blueberries, quiche and Paul Newman, too!

Today’s column is dedicated to reader Mary Gary who has nagged me into correcting a former column. I occasionally suffer from brain drain and leave out a major ingredient or, in this case, an entire recipe. Last month, my “True Blueberries” column ran while I was on vacation — without the promised recipe for blueberry vinegar.

Mary and her husband Ed are both avid cooks and never fail to let me know when they like or don’t like a Cook’s Corner recipe. They keep me on my toes and I truly enjoy the interaction with them and other readers. So today, I’m reprinting in its entirety, the Wild Summer Greens recipe including the missing blueberry vinegar for the salad dressing. Mary, this is for you.

I am also including the corrected version of Kathy’s Krab Quiche that ran last year. Again, another sharp-eyed reader noticed that I had left out a vital ingredient — the liquid. The recipe calls for 1-1/2 cups canned milk. I had completely overlooked that ingredient when typing. Fortunately I was home when a sharp-eyed reader called to say, “I want to make this but just how much milk should I use?”

I’m always learning something new from my readers. And while I believe that when it comes to cooking, there’s truly nothing new or original, there’s always something that I don’t know. It’s especially nice to discover a simple but interesting way to spice up everyday meals. For-instance, it took me years to figure out that orange sections and red onions tossed with romaine lettuce and Italian dressing would upgrade a daily green salad from the ordinary to the sublime.

Now, before I correct my errors, I am first offering a wonderful main dish salad from the Paul Newman Co. This salad’s grapefruit sections offer a touch of tartness to balance out the sweetness in the orange and the smooth texture of avocado. The tasty grilled chicken elevates this entrée to company dinner status. Serve with crispy sour dough rolls and you’ve got a meal. Then, since you’ve eaten such a healthy dinner, treat yourself to a dessert. Enjoy!

Nutty Raspberry Chicken Salad
“Newman’s Own”

2 cups torn leaf lettuce
2 cups torn radicchio
2 cups torn arugula
1 medium Belgian endive, cut up
1 teaspoon Dijon-style mustard
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
4 medium skinless, boneless chicken breast halves (about 1 lb. total)
2 medium oranges, peeled and sliced
1 pink grapefruit, peeled and sectioned
1 avocado, pitted
2 green onions, thinly bias-sliced
Newman's Own Raspberry & Walnut Dressing
Fresh red raspberries or strawberries (optional)

In a large bowl mix leaf lettuce, radicchio, arugula and endive; toss gently. Cover and chill for 2 hours.

For sauce, combine Dijon mustard, honey, salt and pepper in small bowl; set aside. Place chicken on the rack of an uncovered grill right over medium coals. Grill for 12 to 15 minutes or until no longer pink (170 °F), turning once and brushing with sauce the last 2 minutes of grilling. Cool chicken slightly; cut into thin strips.

Arrange lettuce mix on dinner plates. Arrange chicken strips, oranges, grapefruit sections, avocado slices and green onions on lettuce mixture. Drizzle some of the Newman's Own Raspberry & Walnut Dressing over the salads. If desired, garnish with fresh raspberries.

Note: Black olives may be substituted for the grapefruit.

Wild Summer Greens with Oregon Blueberries & Tarragon Blue Cheese Blueberry Dressing

Combine fresh wild greens and edible flowers for a light summer salad. Include any of the following:
Nasturtiums, Johnny Jump-Ups, Day Lilies, Spinach, Shiso, Sweet Cecily, Endive, Arugula, Belgian Endive, Lemon Mint, Beet Greens, Mustard Greens, Tarragon Leaves, Garnish with Red Onion and Orange Wedges.
Top with Oregon Blueberries and dressing (as follows):

Tarragon Blue Cheese Blueberry Salad Dressing
In a small bowl, combine:
2 tablespoons blue cheese, crumbled
1 large clove garlic, pressed
1/3 cup blueberry vinegar
(purchase ready-made or use recipe that follows)
2 tablespoons, plus ½-cup olive oil
1 teaspoon honey
1 clove chopped shallot
1 tablespoon fresh chopped tarragon
Salt and pepper to taste

Mash together blue cheese into blueberry vinegar until cheese is well incorporated. Pouring slowly, in a steady stream, whisk in the olive oil. Add 1 clove chopped shallot, 1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon and 1 teaspoon honey. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Simple Blueberry Vinegar

2 pints Oregon blueberries, rinsed and drained
1 quart white vinegar, divided
½-cup granulated sugar

At least two days in advance of use, make blueberry vinegar. Place washed Oregon blueberries, 1½- cups vinegar and sugar in saucepan; simmer gently for 5 minutes. Cool. Pour into 1½-quart jar with remaining white vinegar. Cover and stand at least 2 days. Strain vinegar as it is used, but do not discard blueberries. Store in refrigerator.

Kathy’s Krab Quiche
Serves 6

½ pound (imitation) krab, chopped
1 cup jack cheese, shredded
1-1/2 cups cheddar cheese, grated
3 eggs
1-1/2 cups evaporated milk
¾ cup green onions and tops
2 tablespoons margarine
1 tablespoon flour
1 9-inch pie pastry lined pan

Mix together cheeses in medium bowl.

Put krab in pastry lined pie tin. Cover with 1-1/4 cups cheese mixture. Sauté onions in margarine and add flour, stirring well. Beat eggs lightly and blend with evaporated milk; add onion mixture. Salt and pepper to taste. Pour over cheese and krab mixture. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.

Bake at 400° F. 15 min. Reduce heat to 350° F. and bake 20-35 min. until custard is set and slightly puffy. Cool at least 15 min. before cutting.

Keep it simple and keep it seasonal!
Betty Kaiser’s Cook’s Corner is dedicated to sharing a variety of recipes
that are delicious, family oriented and easy to prepare.

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