Tuesday, July 29, 2014

How to Chiffonade

I like to garnish Pasta salads, Fruit salads, Vegetable salads and Bean salads with "chiffonade" fresh basil leaves, mint leaves, and/or parsley. Sprinkled on top of salads, these little herb ribbons add color, flavor and texture. Chiffonade herbs, makes a great garnish for soups too. Fresh chiffonade sage leaves are a great accent and adds a burst of flavor to cream of pumpkin or squash soup and fresh chiffonade basil is wonderful on tomato soup.

What does "chiffonade" mean, how do you do it and how in the world do you pronounce it?

Chiffonade~ (shihf-uh-NAYD); Literally translated, this French phrase means "made of rags." In the culinary world it means: thin strips, ribbons, or shreds of vegetables or fresh herb leaves. Leafy vegetables or herbs are cut into fine shreds, then either lightly saute├ęd or used raw to garnish soups, salads and other dishes. It is very easy to do too:)

I recently bought a large fresh basil plant at Trader Joe's for $3.99. Not only was it a great buy, it came in super handy. Not only did I use the basil plant to "chiffonade" fresh basil leaves to garnish several pasta salads, I also made fresh basil pesto.

How to Chiffonade Fresh Basil Leaves in 4 Easy Steps~

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Turkey, Havarti and Bacon Panini




My favorite way to eat any sandwich is in the form of a panini. The first time I had a panini, it was a Cuban Panini. It was love at first bite! One of my all time favorite lunches includes: a panini, a cup of homemade soup, a handful of potato chips, a dill pickle and a couple of cookies or a brownie:)
One thing I have never made using my panini press is a dessert. I can't wait to get started on a few dessert panini ideas that I have rolling around in my head! Keep your eyes open and check back often for one of my upcoming dessert recipes:) For now though, enjoy this recipe for Turkey, Havarti and Bacon Panini~

Saturday, July 26, 2014

Almond French Toast with Mulberry Syrup


I Love French Toast and Mulberry Syrup. Home-made Mulberry Syrup is delicious drizzled over warm French Toast or Pancakes~ All that's needed is a pat or two of butter and a fork! This recipe for French Toast uses almond milk and almond flour. If you don't have either, don't worry, just substitute regular milk and all-purpose flour. You can also use blueberry, blackberry or any fruit syrup in place of the mulberry syrup...heck, use maple syrup if you want too:)

Friday, July 25, 2014

Mulberry Season brings Mulberry Syrup




It's Mulberry Season and the Mulberry trees are overflowing. I'm off to Oshkosh WI to pick Mulberries at Bob and Kim's house. They are fortunate enough to have 3 very large Mulberry Trees on their property. I am armed with gloves, bug spray, an old sheet, plastic baggies and a baseball bat! Oh yes, we will be a sight to be seen indeed:)

It's a mystery to me why more people don't cook with Mulberries. They're fun to hunt for, delicious, nutritious and if your lucky enough and know someone who has Mulberry trees, they're free! Mulberry trees can be found in the woods, farms, yards, and even in parks. People don't usually know what they are and even think they are poisonous, which of course, they are not.

Morus is a genus of flowering plants in the family Moraceae, commonly know as Mulberry Tree. Mulberries are about 1/2" to 1" long and come in shades of white, red and black. There are two kinds of Mulberries. The native red Mulberry and white Mulberry. The white Mulberry, is originally from Asia and was imported here in the early 1800's. The two species have hybridized over the years, so there are now pink Mulberries. There are 10-16 species of these deciduous trees.

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