Crazy for Cauliflower

Have you ever heard the phrase, “my little chou-chou”? It’s a French term of endearment meaning “my little cauliflower” – how cute is that!

Cauliflower hasn’t always had a beloved reputation, but these past couple of years it’s become the IT veggie – and that’s just fine by me! Cauliflower is rich with anti-inflammatory nutrients and vitamin K. It’s also an excellent source of Vitamin C and very low in calories. Gotta love that!

Traditionally white in color – you might be surprised to know that it can be found in brilliant lime green, orange, and purple too! And it’s so versatile – it can be boiled, steamed, roasted, pickled, or simply eaten raw.

And these days you can get it “riced” at the store – which is d’lish to turn into carb-free fried rice. There’s even cauliflower pizza crust variations too – yum!

Instead of mashed potatoes as a side dish – whip up some cauliflower instead! For an even more exciting twist, try my recipe for Cauliflower Cheddar Custards.

So grab some cauliflower and see for yourself – eating healthy really can be delicious!
-Kathy

Cauliflower Cheddar Custard
This makes an excellent light supper served with a salad, or an accompaniment to a big juicy grilled steak.
Makes 4 servings

1 cup milk
1 1/2 cups finely chopped cauliflower
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1 tsp salt
tiny pinch cayenne pepper
2 tsp cornstarch
1 Tbsp. sherry wine
4 eggs
1 cup (5 ounces) shredded cheddar cheese

In a small saucepan, combine the milk, cauliflower, garlic, salt and cayenne. Heat over medium heat until simmering, then cook for about 5 minutes or until cauliflower is very tender. (Do not let it boil.)

In a small cup or bowl, mix the cornstarch and sherry until smooth. Whisk this slurry into the hot mixture and let cook for about 1 minute or until thickened. Remove from heat.

In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs until well combined, and then stir in 1/3 of the hot cauliflower mixture. Then add the remaining hot cauliflower mixture and stir well to combine. Fold in the cheese.

Meanwhile, preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Divide mixture between 4 well-buttered 6-ounce custard cups. (Use a ladle to do this and be sure to stir up mixture well when portioning.) Set custard cups on a rimmed baking pan and bake for about 20 minutes or until the tops are golden and a wooden toothpick inserted in the centers comes out just barely clean. The centers should still be just slightly wiggly as the custards will continue cooking for a bit after they come out of the oven.

Serve in the baking cups, or let cool for a couple of minutes, then run a knife around the edges and turn out into plates to serve.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy on September 12th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Crazy for Cauliflower |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, vegetables

Coffee Lovers

Ahh, coffee! That first cup o’ joe can usually set the tone for the rest of the day. And certainly the Pacific Northwest is known as THE mecca for coffee drinkers and connoisseurs alike.

We definitely love our coffee just as much as our wine with many local independent coffee shops offering coffee “cuppings” – imagine a wine tasting, but for coffee!

We all know coffee is so d’lish paired with dark chocolate, but why not get a bit savory and cook with it? Take for example my Rain City Seasoning: ground Caffe Umbria espresso and Theo Chocolate’s cocoa nibs adds a deep rich flavor to spice rubs. Great on steaks or Alaskan salmon!


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios®.

Or how about adding a cup of coffee to your next slow cooked beef stew or chili recipe, it will add a super-rich flavor to the dish.

Have you ever heard of Red Eye Gravy – this was what cowboys made by tossing a cup of cold coffee into their pan gravy. I’ve given it a comfort food spin in my recipe below Red Eye BBQ Sauce – great on everything!

On the sweeter side of things, try a little ground espresso added to chocolate cupcake batter for a mocha-licious twist.

And for your next brunch try working in a little strong brewed coffee or espresso into your next “Coffee Cake” – for a true COFFEE cake experience! –Kathy

Red Eye Barbecue Sauce
This BBQ has a lot of ingredients, but that’s what gives it a rich and layered flavor. Double or triple the recipe and store refrigerated for up to 2 weeks.

Makes 2 1/4 cups

1 Tbsp. olive oil
1/3 cup 1/4-inch-chopped yellow onion
1/2 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
1/8 tsp. celery seed (optional)
1/4 tsp. ground coriander
1/4 tsp. ground cumin
3/4 tsp. dry mustard
1 Tbsp. minced garlic
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup brewed coffee
1/4 cup Worcestershire
3 Tbsp. molasses
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 cup ketchup
3/4 tsp. Tabasco
1 1/2 tsp. soy sauce
1/8 tsp. salt

Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Add the onion and sprinkle the black pepper and other dry spices on top. Stir and sauté until the onions are glossy, about 3 minutes. Add the garlic and continue to sauté about 1 more minute.

When the onions are translucent, whisk in the remaining ingredients. Bring to a low boil, then reduce the heat and simmer 20 – 30 minutes or until thickened nicely, stir frequently to prevent scorching. If not using the sauce right away, cool and store, refrigerated.

Recipe Copyright © 2017 by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on September 5th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Coffee Lovers |  Posted in Caffe Umbria Coffee Roasters, Dish D'Lish, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, other, Products, Rain City Seasoning, Recent Posts, Recipes, Theo Chocoolate

Picture Perfect Pies

My oh my, I LOVE pie! Whether you’re celebrating a holiday, enjoying a summer time BBQ, or having a casual family dinner- pie can be the perfect dessert for any occasion. Strawberry lavender rhubarb, meyer lemon meringue, salted caramel pecan…the flavor combinations are endless!

I love a fresh berry pie with grated lemon zest added to the filling. Warm from the oven and topped with a big scoop of classic vanilla ice cream- yum!

 

 

It’s no secret that apple is crowd favorite flavor too. Choose a new variety of apples from the farmers market to switch things up, and then try adding dried cranberries or currants to the mix. If you’re really in the mood to try something different, add Tillamook cheddar to the crust- one of my personal favorites.

And you don’t have to stop there! Get creative with your crust. I like to add goodies such as sliced almonds, fine chopped walnuts, or poppy seeds. The crunchy texture pairs perfectly with a flaky, buttery pie dough.

Celebrate summer with your next pie! Picking fresh fruit at a local you-pick-farm is such fun and a great way to get the whole family involved. And once the hard work is done, treat yourself by making my Free-Form Stone Fruit Hand Pies. Happy baking!
-Kathy

Free-Form Stone Fruit Hand Pies
Makes 8 pies

Almond Crust
3 cups flour
1/2 cup sliced almonds, finely chopped
2 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter, cold, cut into small chunks
1/2 cup shortening, cold
1 large egg, beaten
4 teaspoons cider vinegar
6 tablespoons ice water

Stone Fruit Filling
2 1/2 pounds assorted stone fruit such as: sliced fresh peaches, (peeled) nectarines, apricots, plums, or pitted cherries (about 7 1/2 – 8 cups)
3/4 cup sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/4 cup (4 ounces) marzipan or almond paste, optional
Sugar for sprinkling on top, optional

To make the Almond Crust: Mix the flour, almonds, sugar, and salt together in a large bowl. Add the butter and shortening and, with a pastry blender or clean hands, combine until mixture forms pea-sized particles.

In a small, separate bowl, mix together 2 TABLESPOONS of the beaten egg, the vinegar, and the ice water. (Reserve the remaining beaten egg for egg wash.) Stir this mixture into the dry mixture and mix until the liquid is just incorporated. (This dough should be fairly moist and pliable, not crumbly. If the dough is too dry, add more ice water, 1 to 2 teaspoons at a time.)

Form the dough into a log and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill in refrigerator for 1 hour before rolling out.

To make the Stone Fruit Filling: Place the fruit in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix the sugar, flour, and cinnamon together and reserve.

Preheat an oven to 400°F. Lightly spray 2 or 3 large baking sheets with nonstick vegetable spray and set aside.

After the dough has chilled, cut it into 8 equal portions. On a lightly floured surface, roll out 1 piece of dough into a 1/8-inch-thick circle. Keep the other pieces covered with waxed paper or plastic wrap while you work. Repeat with the remaining pieces of dough, keeping the rolled-out circles separate and covered.

Sprinkle the fruit with the reserved sugar mixture and toss very gently. Coat the fruit thoroughly; no dry mixture should be left in the bowl.

If using the marzipan or almond paste, divide it into 1/2-tablespoon pieces. Flatten out each piece and tear it into several pieces. Place pieces on tart shells.

Divide the Fruit Filling among the tart shells, placing about 3/4 heaping cup in the center of each. Gather up the crust edges around the filling, bringing about 1 1/2 inches of pastry all around over the fruit to make an open-faced, rustic-looking tart or hand pie.

With a spatula, carefully transfer each tart to a baking sheet. (You will be able to fit about 3 to 4 tarts on each sheet.)

Whisk 1 teaspoon of water into the reserved beaten egg and lightly brush the exposed dough with the egg wash. Sprinkle the tarts lightly with sugar, if desired.

Bake for 30 to 32 minutes, or until the crust is cooked through and golden brown and the filling is bubbling.

Chef’s Tips:
It is very important to allow 1 hour for the Almond Crust to chill before rolling out.

The fruit and dry ingredients are mixed at the last minute to avoid drawing too much liquid from the pears, which could make the crust soggy.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on August 29th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Picture Perfect Pies |  Posted in citrus, dessert, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Fruit, Kathy Casey

Pears

Here in the Northwest, we are lucky to have so many varieties of scrumptious pears! Red Bartlett’s, Bosc, Seckel, Concorde…each one different and oh-so-delicious!

Pears are known to be sweet and juicy, but did you know they can shine in savory dishes too? I love to cut them into thick wedges and toss with a little olive oil, balsamic, and seasoning. Then roast on a sheet pan in a HOT oven until they are golden delicious. The smoky, sweet flavor pairs perfectly with roast chicken or on a crostini with some gorgonzola for an easy appetizer.

But my favorite way to use roasted pears is in my Endive Salad with Roasted Pears, Hazelnuts, Blue Cheese & D’Lish Cranberry Vinaigrette! It’s always a crowd pleaser at my dinner table.

I also love to use them in a quick and easy fresh relish. Simply mix together diced pears, shallot, a touch of honey and a splash of red wine vinegar. Toss it with fresh mint and just like that- you have an amazing addition to curry dishes or grilled lamb.

Grilled pears are also tasty as a base to a sophisticated sundae- topped with a scoop of vanilla ice cream, a drizzle of salted caramel, red wine syrup and some toasted hazelnuts. Yum- that’s my kind of dessert!

So next time you’re at the grocery store, grab some pears and get creative in your kitchen!
–Kathy

Endive Salad with Roasted Pears, Hazelnuts, Blue Cheese & D’Lish Cranberry Vinaigrette
Makes 4 to 6 servings

Pears
2 unpeeled ripe but firm pears
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 head baby frisée
2 heads Belgian endive
1 small head radicchio, sliced (about 2 cups)
4 cups baby arugula
D’Lish Cranberry Vinaigrette (recipe follows)
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
1/3 cup dried cranberries
1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted, skinned, and coarsely chopped

To roast the pears, preheat an oven to 500°F. Cut the pears into eighths lengthwise. Core, then cut crosswise into 1-inch pieces. Whisk the remaining ingredients in a large bowl, then gently toss the pears in the mixture.

Spread the pears on a rimmed baking sheet lightly sprayed with vegetable-oil cooking spray and roast for 7 to 10 minutes, or until lightly caramelized. You can make the pears up to 1 day in advance. If you do, cool them thoroughly before refrigerating, then bring to room temperature about 1 hour before serving.

To finish the salad, cut the root end and about 1 inch of the top off the frisée. Rinse the frisée thoroughly, separate the head into leaves, and spin dry. Cut the stem ends off the endive, halve the heads lengthwise, then cut lengthwise into thin strips. Toss the frisée and endive in a large, deep bowl with the remaining greens and about 1/2 cup of the vinaigrette.

Divide the greens among large dinner plates. Top each salad with pears, cheese, cranberries, and hazelnuts, dividing evenly. Pass additional dressing.

D’Lish Cranberry Vinaigrette
Makes 1 1/2 cups

2/3 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup white wine vinegar or distilled white vinegar
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 cup orange juice
3/4 cup vegetable oil or very light olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Combine the cranberries, sugar, and vinegar in a small nonreactive saucepan and cook over medium heat until the cranberries pop, about 4 to 5 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
Purée the mixture in a blender, then blend in the mustard and orange juice. With the machine running, gradually drizzle in the oil. The dressing should become smooth and emulsified. Blend in the salt and pepper. Refrigerate until needed.

Chef’s Note: If you are having a big dinner party during the holidays, the entire recipe can easily be doubled. And, if you are tight on time, you can substitute sliced fresh pears or apples for the roasted pears.

Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table Cookbook

Posted by Kathy on August 22nd, 2019  |  Comments Off on Pears |  Posted in appetizers, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, herbs, Kathy Casey, roasted, salads, seasonings, sides, vegetables

Citrus Coolers

Lemonades, limeades, fizzy orangeades – summertime and citrus go hand-in hand.

Start with the basic template: citrus juice, sugar, and water. Then switch it up a bit. How about Meyer lemon or Key lime juices?

Next get creative with water and add some soda water. But think outside of the box and use a flavored soda water – think La Croix or flavored Perrier like fizzy blackberry, sparkling peach, or effervescent blood orange.

Instead of making it with traditional cane sugar, sweeten it with organic agave nectar, a unique honey variety like wildflower or buckwheat, or try a touch of maple syrup.

You can also change up the ice. Have you heard about the fun butterfly pea tea? It changes color when you mix it with citrus juices. Yes, you can make ice cubes with this for a magical experience that kids of all ages will love! Or craft a delicious drink like a Honey Butterfly Tea Soda!

And for adults, a splash of your favorite spirit will snazz up that drink – vodka, gin, tequila, or rum. Who’s ready for a citrusy summer cocktail – I know I am! –Kathy


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios – Liquid Kitchen for The National Honey Board

Honey Butterfly Tea Soda
The sweet and tart honey citrus elixir adds flavor and body to this refreshing drink. The colorful brilliant blue butterfly pea tea creates a magical experience when mixed in!

Makes 1 drink

2 oz Honey Citrus Elixir (recipe follows)
2 oz soda water, chilled
1 1/2 oz brewed Butterfly Pea Tea, chilled
Garnish: lemon wheel

Measure the Honey Citrus Elixir into a tall glass. Fill with ice, then add the soda water and top with the tea.
Garnish with lemon wheel.

Honey Citrus Elixir
Makes 2 cups

1 tablespoon loose Jasmine tea
2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup boiling water
3/4 cup orange blossom honey
1 cup fresh lemon juice

Place the tea, ginger and boiling water in a pitcher. Let steep for 15 minutes then strain. Add the honey– stir and let cool to room temperature. Then stir in the lemon juice and refrigerate.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios – Liquid Kitchen for The National Honey Board

Posted by Kathy on August 15th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Citrus Coolers |  Posted in citrus, Cocktails, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

Potato Salads

Potato Salad is the go-to summer side dish. It’s perfect when cozied up with grilled chicken, or a plate of BBQ goodness.

Everyone seems to love their Mom or Grandma’s versions. Is yours creamy, eggy, pickley? A lot of times it’s what you grew up with that becomes your gold standard.

But why not mix it up a little with some creative takes on this perennial favorite. Greek or Asian potato salad? Why not? My Greek Potato Salad incorporates red potatoes with fresh oregano, calamata olives, bell peppers and cucumbers with a d’lish Feta Vinaigrette.

And one of my new faves is Wasabi Potato Salad. Still warm steamed potatoes are tossed with soy and seasoned rice wine vinegar – cooled then mixed with a wasabi spiked mayo, celery and green onions. Yum!


Photo © Kathy Casey Food Studios.
Or whip up a batch of All-American Potato Salad Deviled Eggs from my book D’Lish Deviled Eggs

So whatever potato salad you’re setting your table with this weekend I know it will be D’Lish! – Kathy

Greek Potato Salad with Feta Vinaigrette
Makes 8 cups

2 lbs red potatoes, cut in 1-inch pieces (about 6 cups)
2 Tbsp red wine vinegar
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 Tbsp Dijon mustard
2 Tbsp chopped fresh oregano
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 cup halved pitted calamata olives
1 cucumber, peeled, seeded and diced
1/2 cup chopped roasted red peppers
1 small green pepper, diced
1/2 cup tiny-diced red onion
4 oz feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 cup crumbled cheese)
1/4 cup chopped fresh Italian parsley

Steam potatoes until very tender, about 12 – 14 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl make the dressing by whisking together the vinegar, olive oil, Dijon, oregano, salt and pepper.

When potatoes are still warm, toss them with the dressing and set aside until cool, then stir in the remaining ingredients.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on August 8th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Potato Salads |  Posted in Books to Cook, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides

Stone Fruit

One of the best things about summer to me is the abundance of sweet, juicy local stone fruit (that is, fruits with a pit). Peaches, plums, cherries, nectarines and apricots come into the market with great anticipation. I always look forward to that first succulent bite of a perfectly ripe peach!

For some of you, the stone fruit harvest conjures up memories of home canning… making rows upon rows of canned peaches. For others, they were the summer treat to enjoy under a shady tree with friends. Fresh-picked, sliced in a salad, baked in a pie, or shaken in a cocktail… the possibilities are endless.

For something light and refreshing, try a big scoop of Ginger Peach Sorbet! It’s easy to make, and is just the thing to cap off a delicious dinner. Served with some gingersnap cookies on the side – it’s my favorite way to end a meal on a hot Summer day.
-Kathy

Ginger Peach Sorbet
Homemade ice creams, sorbets & granités are best eaten soon after being made. Their fresh flavor starts to dissipate after a couple of days.

Makes about 4 cups.

1 cup sugar
1 tablespoon very finely minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup water
about 2 lb. fresh peaches (or enough to make 3 cups of puree)
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice

Place sugar, ginger and water in a small sauce pan, stir and bring to a boil. Let cook about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

Meanwhile, peel and pit peaches. If peaches don’t peel easily, then plunge them into a pot of rapidly boiling water for about 30 seconds and then into cold water to loosen skins before peeling.

Place peaches and lime juice in blender and puree until smooth. Combine peach puree with cooled ginger mixture. Chill mixture at least 30 minutes.

Place mixture in an ice cream freezer and freeze according to manufacturer’s directions.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios®

Posted by Kathy on August 1st, 2019  |  Comments Off on Stone Fruit |  Posted in Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog

Quick Pickles

Who doesn’t love homemade pickles? I certainly do! But sometimes the idea of making them seems intimidating, but I’m here to set the record straight. Pickling your summer garden veggies is fast, easy, and so much fun.

All you need is my Refrigerated Quick Pickle recipe! First clean a quart-sized jar, then pack it full with a mixture of vegetables. Think baby cucumbers, carrots, peppers, and cauliflower – garlic, chili pods, and some fresh flowering dill too if you have it. The ideas are endless so have fun with it!

Next boil up a sweet and tart vinegar brine and quickly pour into the veggie-packed jar. Screw on the lid, and cool to room temperature for about an 45 minutes – then pop in the refrigerator! In just two days you’ll have delicious pickled vegetables to bring to a picnic or enjoy at a backyard BBQ.

And pickling isn’t just for veggies – for something a little different, try one of my favorites –pickled peaches! Awesome to serve with your favorite cheeses, charcuterie platter, or grilled meats.

All these tangy delights will keep for a month in the refrigerator, so get picking and start pickling! -Kathy

Refrigerated Quick Pickles
Makes about 4 quarts

The following is a mixture of veggies that I like to use, but feel free to switch it up with what’s fresh from your garden or the market.

Vegetable Mixture:
7 cups (about 2 lb.) 3/4″-sliced pickling cucumbers
2 1/2 cups (3/4 lb.) 1/2″-thick-slant-cut carrots
2 medium jalapeño peppers, cut in half, or 1 large, quartered
1 1/2 cups (6 oz wt.) 1 1/2″ chunks yellow or white onion
1 1/2 cups (6 oz wt.) 1 1/2″ chunks red onion
2 cups (8 oz wt) 1″ chunks red bell peppers (substitute some hot peppers or some of your other favorite summer peppers if desired)
2 cups (3/4 lb.) 1/2″- to 3/4″-sliced yellow zucchini or yellow squash

Pickling Brine:
2 cups white distilled white vinegar
2 cups cider vinegar
1 3/4 cups water
1 3/4 cups sugar
2 Tbsp. pickling spice
3 Tbsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes

Place all vegetables in a large bowl and toss together to mix colors. Divide vegetables among four clean, regular mouth 1-quart canning jars, packing vegetables in tight. Set jars on a dish towel in a draft-free place in the kitchen.

Place the pickling brine ingredients in a non-aluminum sauce pan over high heat. Bring to a rolling boil and then immediately ladle pickling brine into filled jars, filling to 1/2″ from the top and being sure to cover the vegetables and distribute spices evenly. Immediately cover jar with lid and tighten. Let cool to room temperature, then refrigerate. Let pickle for at least 2 days before eating. Pickles will last refrigerated up to 1 month.

Recipe by Kathy Casey Food Studios® – www.KathyCasey.com

Posted by Kathy on July 25th, 2019  |  Comments Off on Quick Pickles |  Posted in appetizers, Dishing with Kathy Casey Blog, Kathy Casey, seasonings, sides, Snacks, spices, vegetables
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