Featuring our flavor to celebrate in the month of April, the Artichoke, this impressive spring salad is a snap to make. Serving 8 as a first course or 4 as a main course it’s also a great option for your Easter holiday meal.
1/2 cup flour
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
15 large artichokes
10 slices bacon
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 teaspoon finely chopped garlic
salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
1. Prepare a blanc to keep artichokes white: place the flour in a large pot, and beat in just enough cold water to make a smooth, medium-thick paste. Then beat in 2 quarts of cold water, the lemon juice, and the salt. Bring to a boil, lower heat, and simmer for 5 minutes.
2. Remove hearts from artichokes.
3. Add the artichoke hearts to the blanc, bring to a boil, then simmer gently until the hearts are just tender when pierced with a knife, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove pot from heat and allow the hearts to come to room temperature in the liquid.
4. Gently fry the bacon slices. (Do not cook until crisp.) Remove, and reserve on paper towels.
5. Place the mustard in a mixing bowl. Using a whisk, beat in the vinegar. Drop by drop at first, then in a thin stream, beat in the olive oil; the mixture should be medium-thick. Add the garlic, and season vinaigrette to taste with salt and pepper.
6. Remove warm artichoke hearts from liquid. Using a combination of spoon and sharp knife, remove the fuzzy choke from the center of each one. Discard. Cut the remaining hearts in sixths. Place in large mixing bowl, and season with salt and pepper. Cut each bacon slice into 6 pieces, and add to bowl. Toss with vinaigrette. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.
Before indoor grill pans and the George Foreman, many a soul north of the Mason-Dixon braved the elements to fire up grill, often amid the snowflakes, in search of the taste of summer. As many get spring fever, many too get grill fever. As the weather gets a bit warmer, the trees and flowers bloom and the start of grilling season is upon us. From the cut and quality of the meat from the butcher, to the rubs, salts, marinades and sauces to add the perfect finishing touch, we hope the information below will help you to start your summer as the King or Queen of the Charcoal.
In Matters of Meat:
DEAN & DELUCA’s Butcher Shop is stocked only with meat and poultry from farmers and ranchers dedicated “farm to fork” and to meeting strict animal welfare standards, including:
• no animal byproducts in the animal’s feed
• no added hormones
• 100% Source-verified natural beef
• no antibiotics, ever
One of our purveyor’s, Brandt Beef, received the Master Chefs’ Institute Seal of Excellence for its commitment to producing a superior culinary product.
If you are yet to try dry rubs, it’s time. The depth of flavor they add to your food of choice is exceptional. The right combination of spices can give transport you to the lands of Morocco or Jamaica, or bring the flavor of Texas BBQ to your backyard. Try DEAN & DELUCA Dry Rubs with beef, tofu, fish, pork chops, chicken breasts and vegetables.
Things to keep in mind:
1. Maintain a light hand. Three to four tablespoons of spice rub seasoning should be enough for two pounds of food.
2. To apply a rub, sprinkle it over your choice of meat, poultry, fish or veggies and lightly rub into the surface with your hands. Or place the rub in a large plastic bag, add your ingredients and shake to coat.
3. Let spiced food sit in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight before cooking.
DEAN & DELUCA has scoured the globe pairing and packaging complementary spices so you can simply grind, shake or flake, grill and be happy. And yes, variety is the spice of life. Check out all our options for matching with your favorite fish, meat, poultry, veggies or meat substitutes.
Sauce me baby one more time.
Eastern Carolina, Louisiana or Kansas City, Texas and California, every region has adopted their own special sauce, the perfect finish or accent to complete the bbq flavor profile. Before, a delicious BBQ war sets off, how about we decide to have it all? From award winning barbecue chef Charlie Mckenna comes an exclusive Dean & DeLuca gift set of three sauces exemplifying the best of barbecue.
The Memphis Style Sauce is sweet and smoky pairs perfectly with pork, chicken, ribs and anything you can throw on the grill. In the traditional Memphis style it is a champion of versatility and achieves beautiful carmelization and balance on any meat.
The Alabama Style Sauce is a billowing in popularity after remaining relatively unknown outside of North Alabama. It is a mayonnaise and apple cider vinegar based sauce that is amazing smothered over chicken, french fries, ribs, and on grilled corn.
The Carolina Style Sauce is vinegar and tomato based Western Carolina sauce that is tangy, smoky, and savory. It squeals to be poured on top of a pill of pulled pork.
This summer let’s proclaim barbecue – America’s food.
For many, dying eggs is the true beginning of the Easter Season, a time of family and joy. With Easter just a few short weeks away you can get a jump-start this spring holiday by using nature’s own pretty hues from fruits, vegetables and spices. DEAN & DELUCA has tested new natural ways in which you can create a beautiful Easter Eggstravaganza – perfect for all your decorating and hiding needs this holiday.
Generally, there are two methods used when dyeing eggs: cold dipping and hot boiling.
Cold dipping produces subtler shades and is usually the preferred method for using multiple colors on the same egg.
Hot boiling produces much more intense shades, but these eggs are for decoration only, not eating, if you choose not to “blow out” the insides of the egg. We prefer being able to eat our delicious creations, so we blow out our eggs (instructions below).
For Naturally Dyed Eggs try using turmeric, blueberries or beets.
• 2 cups roughly chopped, raw beets (for pink/red), OR
• 2 cups blueberries, crushed (for blue/purple), OR
• 1 teaspoon ground turmeric (for yellow/gold)
• 1 teaspoon distilled white vinegar
• Hard-boiled egg shells (insides removed)
1. To empty a raw egg, begin by using the tip of a sharp utility knife to pierce both ends of the egg; turn the knife in one of the holes to widen it slightly. Then, poke a straightened paper clip through the larger hole to pierce and “stir” the yolk. Hold the egg, larger hole down, over a bowl, and then blow the contents out with a rubber syringe or small drinking straw.
2. Put your choice of coloring ingredient (beets, blueberries or turmeric) into a small pot with 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Cover, reduce heat to medium-low and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain through a fine mesh sieve or cheesecloth, discarding any solids, and then stir in vinegar. Set aside to let cool until warm or room temperature.
To color eggs, submerge in dye, turning often for even coating, until desired color is reached. For more colors, dye eggs first in one color, then wipe dry and dye in a second color.
You can even glue a thin piece of wheatgrass to your eggs, enhancing the “natural” beauty of this year’s Easter collection.
We wouldn’t want the insides of the eggs to go to waste, our preferred recipe this season is the Scrambled Egg with Salmon Roe Smorrebrod.
This luscious sandwich is great wtith any form of caviar or fish roe, but we prefer Salmon Roe.
12 extra-large eggs
1/2 stick (1/4 cup) plus 2 teaspoons lightly salted butter
6 slices dark bread, cut in half
24 thin slices of cucumber
3 ounces salmon roe or other fish roe
sprigs of fresh dill for garnish
1. Beat the eggs well in a large bowl. In a heavy sauté pan, about 8 inches in diameter, melt 2 teaspoons of butter over extremely low heat. Add the beaten eggs, and cook over the lowest possible heat for 45 minutes. Stir occasionally to prevent a skin from forming on the surface. The eggs will thicken very slowly. When they begin to thicken, stir gently with a large spoon to create large flaps in the scrambled eggs. (If no flaps have formed after 45 minutes, raise the heat slightly to finish the thickening. The eggs will be darker in color and thicker than normal scrambled eggs and should fall into large folds or flaps.)
2. Spread 1 teaspoon of butter on each of the bread halves. For each smorrebrod, at 2 corners that face each other diagonally place 2 slices of cucumber. At the other 2 corners, place about 1/4 teaspoon of salmon roe. Cover the rest of the bread with about one twelfth of the egg mixture. Repeat until all smorrebrod are done. Garnish with sprigs of fresh dill.
Variation: If you prefer, you may eliminate the salmon roe and substitute smoked salmon. Simply lay a thin slice of smoked salmon on top of the bread and under the scrambled eggs.
Salmon roe tastes best on this luscious sandwich, but any form of caviar or fish roe will work well. Makes 12 smorrebrod
Kevin Johnson, executive chef of the Leawood, Kan., Dean & DeLuca, says Brussels sprouts started popping up on American restaurant menus thanks in part to the legions of chefs across the country that took a shine to the vegetable. He likens the leafy green orbs to a woman’s little black dress—the perfect accessory to any meal, especially during the holidays.
“Most chefs have added some sort of Brussels sprouts dish to their menus,” says Johnson. “Shaved Brussels sprouts salads, pan-roasted, caramelized, sautéed—they’re adaptable.”
How does Johnson like his Brussels sprouts?
“Au gratin-style or roasted with prosciutto and shallots,” says Johnson.
Here are two of Johnson’s favorite Brussels sprouts preparations for your holiday table.
Brussels Sprouts Au Gratin
Serves 10 – 12
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, outer leaves and stems removed
1/2 cup minced shallot
3 tablespoons flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
Pinch of ground white pepper
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
¼ cup demi glaze
1/3 cup chicken stock
2/3 cup heavy cream
1 cup milk
1 cup grated Swiss cheese (1/4 pound)
Preheat the oven to 400°F and butter a 4-quart baking dish. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the Brussels sprouts and cook until tender, 8 to 10 minutes.
To make sauce sauté shallots in butter until softened. Add flour and stir to make a paste. Slowly whisk in milk, cream, and demi glaze and cook until slightly thickened. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed. Turn sauce down to warm/low and stir in Swiss cheese. Set sauce aside.
Drain the Brussels sprouts and set aside. Combine cooked Brussels sprouts and sauce and transfer to prepared baking dish and spread out evenly.
Bake the sprouts uncovered at 400°F until bubbly and golden brown, about 12-15 minutes. Let sit 4-6 minutes before serving.
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Prosciutto & Shallots
Serves 10 – 12
2 pounds Brussels sprouts, outer leaves and stems removed and cut in half
½ pound shallots, julienne
¼ pound prosciutto, julienne
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil + 1 tablespoon
Pinch of ground white pepper
1 teaspoon minced fresh thyme
Preheat the oven to 375°F. Toss Brussels sprouts with olive oil and roast uncovered about 12-15 minutes or until caramelized. Turn oven down to 325°F and roast an additional 6-8 minutes or until tender. Sauté shallots and prosciutto in remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. Toss mixture with roasted Brussels sprouts and season with white pepper; top with fresh thyme. Serve hot.
Like any good love affair, I had a head-over-heels encounter when I least expected it several years ago, over a candlelit dinner.
The object of my affection? Brussels sprouts.
Although Brussels sprouts weren’t entirely foreign to me, I had somehow managed to mature into my 40s without making their acquaintance. Growing up in Iowa, I consumed my weight in bushels of sweet corn, Pyrex dishes of Durkee onion-topped green bean casserole and stuffed pork chops—a pleasant (if not exciting) and sturdy Midwest sort of diet. Mom was a good cook but didn’t venture much beyond the tattered and splattered recipes in her collection, all of which were neatly written on index cards in her perfect cursive and called for lots of margarine and canned soups as primary ingredients. Brussels sprouts weren’t part of her culinary point-of-view and they were probably not in the neighborhood grocery’s produce department either, but perhaps sandwiched between the broccoli and cauliflower in frozen foods.
I discovered the earthy vegetable by accident at Kansas City’s sexy-cozy Pizza Bella in 2007. Not exactly a classic pairing with a pie, roasted Brussels sprouts are offered as an eclectic appetizer on the locally owned pizzeria’s menu. The dish created a buzz in food circles around town, just as the Brussels sprouts craze was lifting off on the national cuisine landscape.
Intrigued and curious, I ordered up a heaping mound of Pizza Bella’s crispy Brussels sprouts tossed in pancetta vinaigrette, almonds and pecorino Romano along with a potato-gorgonzola-radicchio-balsamic pizza. Expectations? I had none since I was a newcomer to the mini cabbage-like veggie.
My personal Brussels sprouts discovery was before the advent of text messaging, instant message or e-mail-inspired lingo, so my reaction to the dish would have been translated today simply as “OMG.”
Brussels sprouts are now a regular part of my weekly lineup—they’re versatile and can be dressed up for company or come to the table casual. And they’re a wonderful addition to a holiday menu—along with citrus-glazed grilled or smoked turkey, honey-baked ham or tenderloin and mashed sweet potatoes and Parker House rolls—Brussels sprouts have a spark of personality to capture anyone’s attention—and affection.
Rock on, Brussels sprouts. BFF.
-Kimberly Winter Stern