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Recipes and tips as heard on KOMO Radio

Delicious Walla Walla Onions!

I look forward to our local NW Walla Walla Onions every year. When these sweet onions pile up at the farmers market, I know anything I make with them is going to be SWEEET!

Sweeter than a regular yellow onion, it’s said that biting into a Walla Walla is similar to biting into an apple. I don’t know, but I’ll try it if you do!

I DO know that they are mild and sweet enough to serve raw, thick slices with garden fresh tomatoes, fresh mozzarella, some bright green basil and just a sprinkle of balsamic vinegar and good olive oil. One of my favorite summer dinners.

Another fave is to put a little olive oil and white wine vinegar in a large zip lock bag with thick cut Walla Walla rings and marinate for a few hours. Just before serving, toss in some chopped herbs like basil, tarragon, fresh chives, and Italian parsley. Perfect to serve atop grilled salmon or a steak – or add to a sliced tomato salad.

PS: If you’re an onion crier like me be sure to refrigerate your onions before slicing OR have a pair of onion goggles ready – it helps! –Kathy

>Walla Walla Onions
Photo from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table

Herb Marinated Walla Walla Sweet Onions
For a summer buffet table, grill a whole side of salmon and serve it on a large platter, festooned with the herbed onions and fresh herb sprigs. This is also great served with steak.

Makes 4 servings – and enough to top 4 salads, pieces of fish or grilled meats.

1 large Walla Walla Sweet onion, cut into 1/2-inch-thick rings
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
3 Tbsp. sugar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 Tbsp. coarsely chopped fresh basil or cilantro
1 Tbsp. coarsely chopped fresh tarragon
1 Tbsp. 1/2-inch-long pieces fresh chives
2 Tbsp. coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

To make the onions, carefully separate the rings and place in a resealable plastic bag. In a small bowl, whisk the vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper flakes, and oil. Pour the marinade over the onions and close the bag, expelling excess air. Turn the bag to coat the onion evenly, then refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or up to 4 hours, turning the bag occasionally. Just serving, gently toss the onions and marinade in a large bowl with the chopped herbs.

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

Posted by Kathy on June 25th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes

Drink your Veggies!

We have all heard that we should eat our vegetables, but why not drink them too?

Veggie juices are common now in smoothies, adding their healthy vitamins and antioxidants. And there are a ton of veggie juice blends you can buy bottled with everything from kale to carrots to broccoli. But what about other drinks?

I love adding fresh vegetable juices to citrusy drinks like lemon- or limeades, sparkling water, and cocktails too!

Recently I shook up a Honey Carrot Collins to serve at my #SippingSocial presentation at the National Restaurant Association’s BAR show. It incorporated fresh pressed carrot juice mixed with gin, honey, and fresh lemon, finished with a splash of soda. The ingredients are all trending in cocktails right now – it was a huge hit! Visit www.LiquidKitchen.com for the recipe!

Carrot Collins
Honey Carrot Collins – yes please!
The fresh pressed carrot juice makes the color of this cocktail amazing!

Or how about deep red beet juice added to your favorite margarita with a little splash of orange and a dash of hot sauce too. It’s d’lish!

Homemade lemonades are delicious as well with the addition of kale or celery juice and some fresh basil for an herbalicious and veggie twist.

So think outside of the glass with some fun veggie juice drink experimentation this summer. The markets are brimming with inspiration for your next happy hour! –Kathy

Posted by Kathy on June 18th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Cocktails, Foodie News, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, Tasty Travels

Grill A Steak for Dad!

Alright, Father’s Day is coming up. There’s nothing else that dear ol’ dad want more for dinner than a beautiful grilled steak. And that’s great news for you because it’s as easy as pie to cook, if you have your method down. And I’ll say it… EVEN EASIER than pie!

Start with a good piece of meat – a New York, filet, or rib-eye would be perfect! About 20 minutes before you grill, take the steak out of the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature. This will help you get a good, even cook once it hits the heat.

Be sure to pre-heat your grill to high, and lightly rub your steaks with a little olive oil. Then sprinkle liberally with your favorite seasoning – I like to use my Dish D’Lish French Seasoning Salt.

Place the steaks on the grill and cook until nicely marked on the first side. Then turn over and cook on the other side. Depending upon your steaks thickness and how you like it will depend upon how long to cook it. Good tip: don’t move them around to much.

Remember the meat will continue to cook a bit after removing from the grill and you can always put it back on for more heat – you just can’t go back the other way!

Serve topped with a simple to make herb garlic blue cheese butter, dad’s favorite local veggies and an ice cold local microbrew!

I love a great steak topped with Sweet Onions and Gorgonzola with a little bit of Horseradish Drizzle – super easy to make and uses Demitri’s Extra Horseradish Bloody Mix. –Kathy

Beef steak with vegetables, rosemary and soy sause
Photo from Demitri’s Gourmet Seasonings.

Savory Grilled Steak with Sweet Onions and Gorgonzola
This quick and easy preparation uses one of my favorite products – Demitri’s Extra Horseradish Bloody Mary Seasoning. Yes it’s great in a Bloody Mary – of course – but equally delicious as a steak marinade. It’s super easy! (Demitri’s can be found at well stocked grocery stores or online at www.Demitris.com.)

Makes 4 servings

4 steaks, such as New York, flat iron or tenderloin
1/2 cup Demitri’s Extra Horseradish Bloody Mary Seasoning
———————————————
2 large sweet onions, sliced in 1-inch-thick rounds
1/4 cup olive oil
salt and pepper
1/2 cup gorgonzola cheese, crumbled (about 2 ounces)

Horseradish Steak Drizzle
1/4 cup Demitri’s Extra Horseradish Bloody Mary Seasoning
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
4 tsp. red wine vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil

Garnish: coarsely chopped fresh basil

To marinate the steak: Trim the meat of any outer pieces of fat and silverskin. Put the steaks in a large re-sealable plastic bag. Pour the 1/2 cup of Demitri’s seasoning into the bag, press out any air, and then seal the bag. Move the meat around in the bag to coat well. Marinate, refrigerated, for at least 1 hour or preferably overnight, turning the bag a few times.

To make the Horseradish Steak Drizzle: Mix ingredients together. Cover and set aside.

To grill the meat: Preheat a grill to high. Drizzle the steaks and onions with a little olive oil and lightly season steak with salt and pepper. Grill steaks to the desired doneness. The grilling time will vary, depending on the heat of the grill and the thickness of the meat. Remove steak to a plate to rest for about 5 minutes before serving, allowing juices to settle. Top with cheese so that it starts to melt. Meanwhile, grill the onions till tender and nicely grill marked.

Serve the steaks topped with onions and drizzled with Horseradish Steak Drizzle.

Recipe created by Kathy Casey Food Studios® for Demitri’s Bloody Mary Seasoning

Posted by Kathy on June 11th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in KOMO Radio, meats, Recent Posts, Recipes

Wild Fennel

Did you know fennel grows like a weed in the Pacific Northwest? Especially in Ballard. I see it growing along the road on my commute to work every morning and it grows beautifully in my urban parking lot garden! It’s basically a weed – a delicious, anise-flavored weed.

Fennel 1
Fennel growing in my urban garden!

If you want to try planting it, find some growing wild and then harvest the seeds in the fall. Sprinkle the seeds around your garden, but be careful. It likes to grow and spread everywhere.

If you happen to have wild fennel in your neighborhood or garden you can use the whole plant. Early tender fennel fronds chopped and added to a salad. Even the coveted fennel pollen picked from the flowers are great in dishes – so elegant and trendy to sprinkle over almost anything.

Fennel 2
Harvested fennel seeds

Here is a link to my Liquid Kitchen video on Small Screen Network to see how to make Fennel-Roasted Walnuts – a great nibble to serve with your favorite cocktail.

Later in the year, I love to harvest the seeds, dry them and enjoy all year long! -Kathy

Fennel-Roasted Walnuts
This recipe is from my book Sips & Apps and is one of my favorites. Perfect to take to a party, or even bag up for little gifts.

Makes 5 cups

2 tablespoons fennel seed
1/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 egg white
1 pound (about 4 cups) walnut halves

Preheat an oven to 250 degrees F. Spray a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray, or lightly oil it.

Grind the fennel seed in a spice grinder or mortar and pestle until finely ground. In a large bowl, mix the ground fennel with the sugar, salt, and pepper. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk the egg white until frothy. Add the nuts and toss to coat evenly. Using a fine-mesh strainer, drain off excess egg white. Add the drained nuts to the spice mixture and stir to coat evenly.

Spread the nuts on the pan; they will be a little thicker than a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes. Stir, and roast for 20 minutes more, until the nuts are golden and crisp. Remove from the oven and stir the nuts on the baking sheet but do not remove them. Be sure to let the nuts cool completely and become crisp. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 weeks. If necessary, recrisp them in a 350 degree F oven for a few minutes before serving.

Recipe from Kathy Casey Sips & Apps, Chronicle Books

Posted by Kathy on June 4th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts, Recipes, Small Screen Network, Snacks, videos

Coleslaw with Everything!

The sun is shining and that means picnics. And no outdoor meal is complete without coleslaw!

There are a lot of different varieties of slaw, and you can certainly switch up the cabbages. Try your next slaw with green, red, savoy, or nappa. But it’s the dressing that really gives slaw that tasty, zippy zing.

There are vinaigrette types, which range from tart and tangy. Then there are creamy or spicy styles, which are my faves.

I love a cooked thickened dressing – why? Well you know sometimes when you dress your slaw it gets kind of weepy and then bland. Well a cooked and thickened dressing takes care of that as it stays coated to the cabbage. Just thicken a simmering vinegar and sugar mixture with a little cornstarch, cool, and then add into mayo with your seasonings.

My recipe for Poppy Seed Pineapple Slaw is a great example of a cooked thickened dressing and is perfect to serve with barbecue-slathered ribs and fresh grilled corn! –Kathy

Coleslaw

Poppy Seed & Pineapple Coleslaw
Makes 6 cups

1 (8 oz.) can crushed pineapple with juice
1/2 tsp. salt
tiny pinch red pepper flakes
1 tsp. finely minced fresh ginger (optional)
1/3 cup cider vinegar
3 Tbsp. sugar
1 Tbsp. cornstarch
1 (1 lb. ) bag coleslaw greens or 8 cups of mixed shredded green and red cabbage
4 green onions, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, grated
1 1/2 tsp. poppy seeds
1/4 cup light or regular mayonnaise

In a small saucepan combine the crushed pineapple with juice, salt, red pepper flakes, ginger, vinegar, sugar and cornstarch. Whisk together well until the cornstarch is dissolved. Place over medium-high heat and bring to a boil while constantly stirring; cook until dressing is thickened. Remove from heat and let cool to room temperature.

Place coleslaw greens, green onion, carrot and poppy seeds in a large bowl. Stir mayonnaise into cooled pineapple mixture, then mix into coleslaw, coating salad well.

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

Posted by Kathy on May 28th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides

Fresh Herbs Anytime You Want!

If you have even a tiny strip of garden space, planters or pots, you can grow your own fresh herbs. Having a “green thumb” is not required.

The most popular and easy herbs to grow, in my experience, are rosemary, thyme, and of course mint. All of which will wow you with how quickly they will fill your garden! But be careful with mint – it can easily take over.

However, it’s not only these common herbs that flourish in the northwest! Some of my favorite plants are the unusual varieties such as; lemon verbena, pineapple sage, lemongrass, lemon balm and then all the cool varieties of sage and thyme- I could keep going on and on!

Now what to do with your bounty once you harvest? Of course add them fresh to all your favorite dishes! But you can also try drying some herbs. Think thyme, sage, oregano, dill, marjoram and rosemary. Tie them in bundles and hang them for a week or so in a cool dry spot.

When totally dry, crumble and put into jars. Or you can chop fresh herbs, lay out on a sheet pan in the freezer for a quick freeze — then store frozen in little zip lock bags. Take out and add a pinch to any of your favorite dishes later in the year.

And herbs are fun for infusing spirits too. I love lemon verbena-infused gin or vodka in summer cocktails. Place 2 cups of vodka or gin in a mason jar, add 4-6 lemon verbena leaves. Cover and shake. Let sit for about 5 days then remove and discard the verbena. Mix in your favorite cocktails or just enjoy with a splash of soda.

Herbs

Visit your farmers market or garden center early to get the more unique varieties to plant. And then enjoy an herb-alicious summer! –Kathy

Posted by Kathy on May 21st, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in KOMO Radio, Lifestyle, Recent Posts

Add New Life to Weekday Dinner With Modern Sides!

The side dishes of today should bring variety and spice to our meals. Baked potatoes and rice are still great go-to’s. But with so many interesting new options, it’s time to get creative!

How about trying some different varieties of rice? Try fragrant basmati so tasty jazzed up with chili paste, fresh ginger, chopped roasted peanuts, and a sprinkle of scallions. Or try jasmine rice simply steamed with lemongrass, ginger and garlic.

Couscous is super-fast and easy to make, as is bulgur wheat. Add in fresh parsley, lemon juice, olive oil, dried fruits and some toasted nuts, then finished with a dash of ground coriander.

In the veggie category, glazed carrots and steamed asparagus are giving way to more complex dishes like Roasted Baby Eggplants with Spicy Peanut Soy Dressing, which I developed for Sunset – yes, please!

Roasted Baby Eggplants with Spicy Peanut Soy Dressing
Photo by Kathy Casey Food Studios for Sunset Produce

Roasting root vegetables intensifies their sweetness. I love to pair Roasted Beets with an easy Orange Cumin Glaze. Now that’s not boring, right?

So get out of your side dish rut and try something new. You never know, you may invent the next beloved “green bean casserole.” –Kathy

Roasted Beets with Orange Cumin Glaze
You can prepare this recipe part way in advance: Just roast, peel and slice the beets ahead of time. This can be done up to 3 days in advance. Then finish the rest of the recipe procedure per instructions.

Makes about 6 servings.

5 large beets (about 2 lb.)
1/2 cup fresh orange juice
1 tsp ground cumin
1 Tbsp white wine vinegar
1 1/2 Tbsp honey
1 tsp cornstarch
2 Tbsps butter
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts
1 Tbsp finely chopped orange zest
2 Tbsps chopped fresh parsley

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Wash the beets and leave root untrimmed. Place beets on a large sheet of foil and seal like a package. Place foil packet on a baking pan and roast in preheated oven until very tender, about 1 hour and 45 minutes. Poke beets to make sure they are tender.

As soon as beets are cool enough to handle, slip the skins off and slice into 1/4-inch slices.

In a small bowl mix together the orange juice, cumin, vinegar , honey and cornstarch. Stir until cornstarch is well incorporated.

Place liquid mixture in a large, non-stick sauté pan and heat over medium-high heat, whisking – while adding the  butter and salt. Bring to a boil and add the sliced beets. Cook, turning beets as necessary, until they are hot and nicely glazed. Place on a serving platter or in large, shallow bowl.

Mix together the walnuts, orange zest and parsley and sprinkle over the beets.

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

Posted by Kathy on May 14th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, sides

Strawberry Days

Strawberries really signal the beginning of summer. I can’t wait for the first big, juicy red berry of the season.

Probably the most popular way to enjoy strawberries (other than eaten from hand) is strawberry shortcake. Here’s a quick tip for my favorite take on the classic: Start with Fisher Fair Scone Mix, add in some chocolate chips, form them, and then sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake and serve with sliced fresh strawberries tossed with a touch of local honey, and a dollop of whip cream. For a truly decadent experience, add a splash of local berry liqueur to the whip cream! Yum!

On the non-dessert side, too, strawberries have multiple possibilities. In my Strawberry & Spinach Salad, I like to top them with thin slivers of sweet Walla Walla onion and glazed almonds, then dressed it all with a Lowfat Poppy Seed–Ginger Vinaigrette thickened with pureed strawberries – a light and refreshing summer salad.

If you don’t have strawberries of your own to pick, there are many choices around the Northwest for “U-Pick” strawberries. And if you have had a big day of picking but still haven’t eaten your fill while in the field, sit down and relax with a big, glistening bowl of just-picked juicy berries. -Kathy

Strawberry & Spinach Salad
Photo from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table.

Strawberry & Spinach Salad with Sweet Onions and Poppy Seed–Ginger Vinaigrette
You can substitute toasted hazelnuts for the almonds. This salad is also excellent as an entrée salad, topped with grilled chicken cut into strips.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Vinaigrette
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 tablespoon minced peeled fresh ginger
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
3 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup light olive oil or other salad oil
2 teaspoons poppy seed

Salad
3 cups fresh strawberries, stemmed and quartered, or another local berry, such as raspberries, blackberries, or blueberries
2 bunches spinach, stemmed, washed well, and spun dry (8 to 10 cups)
1/2 cup thinly sliced sweet white onion, such as a Walla Walla Sweet
1/2 cup sliced almonds, toasted

To make the vinaigrette, whisk the vinegar, ginger, mustard, honey, sugar, salt, and pepper in a medium bowl. Gradually whisk in the oil, emulsifying the vinaigrette. Stir in the poppy seed. Refrigerate for up to 2 days.

To make the salad, toss the berries, spinach, and onion with the vinaigrette. Sprinkle with almonds.

Recipe from Kathy Casey’s Northwest Table.

Posted by Kathy on May 11th, 2015  |  Add Comment |  Posted in Books to Cook, Fruit, KOMO Radio, Recent Posts, Recipes, salads
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