Lifestyle

Burgers

When summer time finally hits the Pacific Northwest, burgers are the first thing on my mind. To me, the smell of a burger sizzling on an outdoor grill is simply intoxicating.

I’ll always love a classic beef patty piled high with condiments and spreads, but sometimes it’s fun to switch it up. Burgers are a blank canvas to get creative and try new combinations. Your local farmers market is a great place to find inspiration.


Photo from Clean Eating

Outdoor BBQ in your weekend plans? Create a burger bar and make it interactive with a DIY set-up! Simply pre-heat your grill and have it hot and ready. Pick up some artisan buns and set out a variety of cheeses and spreadables like spicy sriracha mayo, fun mustards, local pickles, and grilled sweet onions. Offer unique patty options to please the whole crowd- like local grass fed beef, veggie black bean burgers, or seasoned turkey patties.

Or why not try my Barbequed Salmon Burgers on Lemon Dill Buns! The smoky grilled salmon patty paired with fresh condiments like lettuce, cucumbers, or a tangy vegetable slaw is knock-your-socks-off delicious. If baking your own buns seems daunting, not to worry! Just pick up your favorite from a local bakery and get to grillin’.

Make sure to have your guests bring some tasty sides, ice cold brews, and wine. And while the grill is still hot – throw on a few bananas for making up some grilled banana splits for a sweet ending – yum!
-Kathy

Barbequed Salmon Burgers
Makes 4 servings

1 ½ lbs boneless, skinless salmon fillet, pin bones removed (ask your fishmonger to do this)
½ tsp black pepper
1 Tbs Dijon mustard
2 Tbs minced onion
1 Tbs fresh dill
1 tsp minced fresh garlic
1 TBS fresh lemon juice
2 TBS dried bread crumbs
¾ tsp kosher salt

Lemon Dill Buns, or local bakery bun
Mayonnaise or Tartar Sauce
Any combination of burger goodies you like, such as tomato, lettuce, onion, cucumbers, vegetable slaw, etc.

To make the burgers, chop the salmon well. Mix it thoroughly with the remaining burger ingredients in a medium bowl. Divide the mixture into 4 portions and shape into 4 ½-5 in diameter well-compacted round patties. Refrigerate the patties, tented, for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight to firm.

Pre-heat a grill to high and oil. Carefully place patties on grill and cook for about 2 minutes per side.

Split buns in half and toast lightly. Spread mayonnaise or tartar sauce onto buns, add the cooked patties, and pile high with garnishes of your choice.

Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table, Chronicle Books.

Posted by Kathy on June 16th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, Kathy Casey, salmon

Garden Herbs

If you have a tiny strip of garden space, planters, or pots- you can grow fresh herbs. What’s not to love about fresh herbs anytime you want! The most popular and easy to grow herbs – in my experience – are rosemary, thyme, and mint. You’ll be amazed at how quickly they fill your garden.

But these aren’t the only common herbs that flourish in the NW. Some of my favorite plants are the unusual varieties like lemon verbena, pineapple sage, and the prolific lemon balm…the list goes on and on!

Now what to do with your bounty once you harvest? Add them to all of your favorite dishes, of course! You can also try drying heartier herbs such as thyme, sage, oregano, marjoram, and rosemary. Tie them in small bundles with twine and hang them upside down for about a week in a cool dry spot. Once they are fully dry, crumble the herbs and put into jars- a fun gift for foodies!

An alternative to hang drying is quick freezing your herbal bounty. To do this, chop the herbs and spread onto a sheet pan in the freezer for a quick freeze (5-10 minutes). Transfer to zip lock bags and store frozen until ready to use for a delicious, herbalicious add-in anytime of the year.

–Kathy

Posted by Kathy on May 25th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Lifestyle, Recent Posts

Brunch for Mom

It’s Mother’s Day weekend! And what better way to treat Mom than with a delicious brunch, complete with a bubbly cocktail.

Start the night before and whip up my Spring Wild Mushroom, Asparagus ‘n’ Sausage Strata – rustic bread, seasoned egg mixture, sautéed asparagus and mushrooms. Add in some turkey sausage or bacon, and grated cheese. Refrigerate overnight then pop in the oven first thing in the morning. Perfect served with some fresh fruit or a few tossed greens.

Mimosas are a spirited way to start the day especially while the strata bakes. Make it with fresh squeezed orange juice, or get creative and try adding a little fresh raspberry or mango puree.

And for “extra mom points” listen closely to this fun idea: freeze edible flowers in ice cubes. Place a couple flower cubes in a large wine glass, add in a jigger of vodka, with a splash of Grand Marnier or Chambord, pour over the ice and top with a big splash of sparkling pink champagne bubbles. Fun & fabulous!


“Flower Cubes”

Cheers to all the wonderful Moms out there! – Kathy

Spring Wild Mushroom, Asparagus ‘n’ Sausage Strata
Good bread is the foundation ingredient for any strata. With so many great breads available today, it isn’t a chore to find one to add to these breakfast bakes. The challenge now is in deciding which one to use — be it Como bread from Grand Central, a delicious La Brea Bakery loaf or any other sturdy, handcrafted bread.

And if the bread is just a little bit stale, that’s okay. In fact, breakfast bakes are a great way to use up day-old artisan breads. Fold in a cup of fresh baby spinach for added greenery.

Makes 6-8 servings

1/2 lb. bulk Italian sausage or turkey sausage
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cups sliced wild or domestic mushrooms (morels, hedgehogs, cremini, portobello, button mushrooms, shiitake, chanterelles, reconstituted dried porcini, etc.)
2 cups 1/2 inch bias cut-sliced, fat, fresh asparagus pieces
1 Tbsp minced fresh garlic
8 eggs
3 cups half & half
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
8 cups 1-inch-diced hearty bread, such as a rustic sourdough
2 cups (8 ounces) coarsely grated Fontina cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large sauté pan heated over medium-high heat, cook the sausage until halfway cooked, about 3 minutes. Then add the onion and mushrooms and sauté for another 2 minutes. When veggies are tender, add asparagus and garlic and cook for 1 minute. Remove from heat and set aside.

In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, salt and pepper until well combined. Add the bread, Fontina cheese, half the Parmesan cheese and the cooked sausage mixture.

Place in an 11 x 13-inch baking pan. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan cheese over the top and let sit, refrigerated, at least 1 hour or preferably overnight, so that bread soaks up egg mixture.

When ready to serve, bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for approximately 45 – 50 minutes or until puffy and golden and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.

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

Posted by Kathy on May 11th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Lifestyle, Recipes, KOMO Radio, Kathy Casey, breakfast

Dip In!

From party staples like gooey, cheese fondue to classic French onion or 7-layer fiesta dip, we all have our favorites.

These days dips are getting lighter and healthier. We’re whipping up our favorites not with full fat sour cream and mayo but with Greek yogurt as well as lite sour creams and mayos. Even this party staple can’t escape the better-for-you revolution!

Hummus is all the rage lately – made with protein-rich garbanzo beans. It’s quick-and-easy to make from scratch, but also available in a wide variety of flavors like roasted pepper and sun-dried tomatoes. Cruise the hummus isle these days and you’ll find brilliant beet hummus and emerald green edamame varieties!


D’lish hummus!
(Photo from Epicurious)

Creamy white bean dips are also popular and fall into the better-for-you category, too. It’s tasty paired with bold flavors like in my Tuscan White Bean Dip Layered with Green Olive and Lemon Tapenade.

Now, we all love our dips with potato and tortilla chips but you can also lighten up your dippables. Try something new, like pita chips and rice crackers, OR go the veggie route with endive leaves, slices of crunchy fennel, or colorful bell pepper.

So whatever the occasion, get out of your DIP RUT, lighten up –and try something new! –Kathy

Tuscan White Bean Dip Layered with Green Olive and Lemon Tapenade
I love to make the tapenade with those brilliant green Castelvetrano olives available at olive bars. If you want to take some extra time and pit them rather than buying pitted jarred olives, it is worth it! I like to serve this dip with pita chips or rustic crackers.

Makes 3 cups, or about 8 to 10 servings

Dip
1 (15-ounce) cans white beans, drained well
2 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
3 cloves fresh garlic, peeled
pinch of red pepper flakes
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 tsp. very finely minced lemon zest
1 tsp. very finely minced fresh rosemary
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Tapenade
1 1/2 cups pitted manzanilla or other green olives, drained
1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 Tbsp. very finely minced lemon zest
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil or oil from sundried tomatoes
1/4 cup coarsely chopped Italian parsley
1/4 cup finely chopped sundried tomatoes in oil, drained

Garnish: extra-virgin olive oil and fresh rosemary sprig

To make the dip: In a food processor, combine the drained beans, cheese, if using, and garlic, and process for about 1 minute. Scrape down the sides of the bowl and add the pepper flakes, lemon juice and zest, rosemary and salt. With the motor running, add the oil through the feed tube in a slow stream. Process until smooth. Taste for salt and adjust if desired. Store the dip, covered and refrigerated, for up to 3 days.

To make the tapenade: In a food processor, combine the olives, garlic, lemon juice and zest, and oil, and pulse till the ingredients are thoroughly chopped, but still have some coarseness to them. Add the parsley and sundried tomatoes and pulse until just integrated. The tapenade can be stored, covered and refrigerated, for up to 1 week.

To serve: Put the dip in a pretty bowl, smooth out the surface, then layer the tapenade on top. Drizzle with a tiny bit of olive oil, and garnish with the rosemary.

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

Posted by Kathy on April 20th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, KOMO Radio, Kathy Casey

Juicing for Joy

As you walk the isle of the grocery store these days, you’ll soon notice the rows and rows of new juices readily available. What is all this juicy business? Well for starters, it’s an easy and d’lish way to get your recommended daily allotment of fruits and vegetables, and not to mention lots of vitamins and nutrients.

So what to do? Got the bucks to buy a bottle? It is pretty convenient to pop into a shop and pick up your favorite blend but over time it can be more expensive than your daily cup of joe.

How about buying a home juicer? Making juice from home can be an investment in time and money up front but with a little planning it truly is the best way to enjoy a juice filled lifestyle and the fresher the juice, the better the health benefits too!

Here’s a favorite blend of mine that you can play with the proportions to fit your pallet. I suggest doing 3 parts veggie or root juice to 1 part fruit juice and any salty, spicy or sour juices should be added to taste.

Beets ( In addition to being sweet and oh so pretty, they are high in antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory benefits)
Celery (It has a touch of natural saltiness, bright flavor, and it’s a natural diuretic)
Slice of fresh ginger
Apple
Lemon Juice

Want a powerful punch of antioxidants? How about whipping up a delicious Green Juice like this one from Sunkist.

 


Photo from Sunkist.com
 

Made with fresh squeezed grapefruit and orange juice, fresh pressed cider , ginger, and kale juice.  Yum!

Oh and did I mention that fresh veggie juices are great  as a mixer for cocktails too! That’s right. The juicing trend is moving into Happy Hour. Here is one of my favorite cocktails for spring: Make it with your favorite gin!

Carrot Collins
Honey Mint Carrot Collins
 

The carrot juice adds a subtle sweetness and a beautiful color, while playing well with the botanicals of the gin. Find this recipe and more at www.liquidkitchen.com

Happy Juicing!  –Kathy

Edible City Month!

How well do YOU know Seattle’s food history? Find out at the Museum of History & Industry (aka MOHAI) with their most recent exhibit, Edible City: A Delicious Journey! This is a must visit exhibit for anyone who loves food and wants to learn more of our city’s tasty history!

See how foodie frontrunners have shaped Seattle from the early days of Pike Place Market truck farmers to the origins of the Rainier cherry. Meet the man behind Seattle’s first sushi bar and discuss/debate Seattle’s signature dishes. From farmers and fishers to celebrity chefs, it’s all there – even a photo of me at 25!

And for the month of April, MOHAI has gathered some of the region’s top restaurants for “dine in for Edible City Month!” a tasty tie-in to Seattle Restaurant Week.

So Dine in For Edible City Month and then check out the MOHAI exhibit to taste the city! –Kathy

Posted by Kathy on March 30th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, KOMO Radio, Kathy Casey

Brussels Sprouts

Brussels sprouts – who ever thought that these mini-cabbages would become the uber- popular vegetable! From bar menus to bacon & bourbon lathered side dishes, they are definitely on just about every menu these days.

Hipster yes, but good for you, too! These veggies are chock full of vitamins K and C, as well as iron, fiber and vitamin A.

There are lots of great ways to prepare Brussels sprouts at home from quick sautéed to oven roasted… even shaved and raw in a slaw or salad. Try them roasted with a Bacon Citrus Toss – d’lish!

You can also separate the “leaves” and give those a quick toss in a hot pan for a d’lish topping for mac and cheese or grilled pork. To do this, cut the core of the Brussels sprout out with a small paring knife, Then you can “peel” all the leaves off easily.

Cook them in a hot pan with a smidge of olive oil or butter until they are bright green but not too wilted. Finish it off with a squeeze of lemon. YUM! –Kathy


Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios® for Sunkist.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon Citrus Toss
Brussels sprouts are the “it” vegetable of the dinner table these days. The tangy citrus toss plays well with the rich bacon in the dressing, making for a delicious side-dish. Or try serving as an appetizer or as a warm salad over greens.

Makes between 4-6 servings

6 cups trimmed Brussels sprouts, halved if large (about 1 1/2 pounds)
2 Tbsp. olive oil
1/4 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. freshly ground black pepper
3 strips bacon, cut into thin slices
1 Tbsp. brown sugar
1 Sunkist® Meyer Lemon, zested and juiced, zest reserved separately
1 Sunkist Minneola Tangelo Orange, zested and juiced, zest reserved separately

Preheat oven to 425°F.

In a large bowl, toss Brussels sprouts with olive oil, salt and pepper.

Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet and roast until tender and showing good color, about 30 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a medium skillet, cook bacon until crispy, about 5 minutes. Add brown sugar and both citrus juices. Increase heat to high and let mixture reduce by half. Take care not to burn.

When Brussels sprouts are done, place them in a large serving bowl or platter, drizzle with the warm bacon-citrus mixture, and toss together with reserved zests. Serve immediately.

Recipe by: Kathy Casey Food Studios® for Sunkist.

Posted by Kathy on February 23rd, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides

Hearts a Flame Valentine Dessert

Valentine’s Day is just around the corner so I thought I’d share a super fun dessert idea!


Sweethearts for your sweetie!

Whether you’re headed out or eating in, try wow’ing your sweetheart at home with an AMAZING dessert, made with all your burning love – a Flaming Chocolate Cherry Heart!

This can be made up to one day ahead and then finished off right before serving. Cut a chocolate cake layer (yes you can buy it!) into a heart, top it with a dome of chocolate cherry ice cream and then cover in a fluffy meringue (special tip: you can freeze ahead at this point).

When ready to serve, give the meringue a quick golden toasting in the oven. Once out of the oven, ladle over the entire cake with rum and carefully light it. Be sure to pay careful attention to the safety details here AND don’t get too carried away with the flame. It’s gonna be impressive!

So here’s to a d’lish Valentine’s Day! –Kathy

Flaming Chocolate Cherry Heart
This actually makes enough for four, so when serving for two, just freeze any leftovers for later nibbling. Also, cut cake into a heart or another cute design if desired.

1 8-inch high-quality Devil’s Food chocolate cake layer trimmed to a 5-inch heart (reserve cake trimmings for later snacks)
1 pint cherry ice cream (I like Tillamook Oregon Dark Cherry or Ben & Jerry’s Cherry Garcia)
4 egg whites
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar
3/4 cup sugar
1 Tbsp. 151 rum
High-quality chocolate sauce (optional)

Place trimmed cake on a large freezer-to-oven plate, pie pan turned upside down, or other metal bakeable tray or plate.

Soften ice cream slightly and cut away the container. Turn out onto a large piece of plastic wrap. Drape the ice cream with another large piece of plastic wrap and mold the ice cream into a dome shape, 5 inches in diameter at the base. Place ice cream on the trimmed cake and immediately place in freezer while making the meringue. (The recipe can be prepared to this point up to 1 week in advance. Thoroughly wrap the cake and ice cream with plastic and keep frozen.)

To make the meringue: In a grease-free mixer bowl, beat the egg whites on high speed until frothy. Add cream of tartar and beat until just barely getting peaky. Then beat in the sugar, 1 tablespoon at a time. Continue beating until stiff and glossy.

Remove the cake from the freezer, remove the plastic and place on baking tray. With clean hands, pile the meringue on the frozen cake, covering all surfaces and swirling and making cute peaks in the meringue with your fingertips. Immediately place the cake back in the freezer, uncovered, and keep frozen until ready to serve. (This step can be done up to 1 day in advance.)

Note: Be sure the cake is frozen for a minimum of 4 hours before serving.

Serve and flame the bomb: Preheat oven to 475 degrees F. Place cake in the oven for about 4 to 6 minutes, or until meringue is nicely browned all over and meringue tips are golden browned.

Bring to the table immediately and place on a trivet. Flame immediately: place 151 rum in a metal ladle or large spoon and warm it over a candle. Then light the rum and carefully pour it over the cake. (Be careful not to dribble any 151; it is on fire!) When the flames go out, cut the cake in wedges and serve on plates drizzled or decorated with chocolate sauce.

Chef’s Note: The trick is to keep the whole thing really well frozen before baking the meringue in the oven. Leftover cake can be re-frozen. For serving 4 people, use the entire 8-inch cake layer and double the ice cream and meringue amounts.

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

Posted by Kathy on February 9th, 2017  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Foodie News, Lifestyle, Recipes, KOMO Radio, Kathy Casey, dessert
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