Saturday, April 23, 2011

Artichoke and Goat Cheese Bruschetta

Artichoke Goat Cheese Bruschettas

Artichoke and Goat Cheese Bruschetta Recipe
Yields: 18 bruschettas

18 baguette bread slices, cut on the diagonal about 1/4-inch thick Extra-virgin olive oil
2 jars (6 to 6 1/2 ounces each) marinated artichoke hearts
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley, divided
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese (preferably Parmigiano-Reggiano)
Freshly-ground pepper
6 ounces creamy goat cheese , crumbled
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Brush baguette bread slices on both sides with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet. Bake slices until just crisp, about 3 minutes a side. Remove from oven and leave on baking sheet. (Bread can be toasted 3 hours ahead; cover loosely with foil and leave at room temperature.)

Drain artichokes, reserving about 2 tablespoons of the oil they were packed in, and place them in a food processor fitted with a metal blade. Add reserved 2 tablespoons artichoke oil, 1/2 cup of the parsley, Parmesan cheese, and several grindings of black pepper. Process, pulsing machine, until mixture is a coarse puree. (Puree can be prepared 3 hours ahead; cover and leave at cool room temperature.)

When ready to serve, spread each bread slice with a mound of artichoke puree and top with some crumbled goat cheese. (Bruschetta can be assembled 1 hour ahead; leave uncovered, at room temperature.)
When ready to eat, bake until cheese is melted and bruschetta are warm, approximately 5 to 6 minutes. Sprinkle bruschetta with black pepper and some of the remaining parsley. Serve warm on a platter.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Picnic for the Planet

In about a month, we will celebrate Earth Day (April 22).  This year The Nature Conservancy is celebrating Earth Day by highlighting the food we eat.  Groups are being organized all around the world for a global Picnic for the Planet.

I am working on getting a picnic event right here in Lansing, MI.  It will be at the Lansing City Market on April 22nd from 11:30 to 1:30.  More details on the event will come shortly!  Check out the meetup group here: 
In the meantime, mark your calendars for April 22, eat locally, support restaurants that use local or sustainable foods...and go have a picnic!

I will be highlighting foods and recipes native to Michigan here on this blog, so if you have any good suggestions for me please share!

Friday, January 7, 2011

Hungarian Beef Stew

This is one of the best stews I've ever turned out beautifully.  One change that made to the recipe below was that I roasted a red pepper and used that instead of the jarred variety.  I just couldn't find jars of roasted red pepper at my grocery store.  One of the downsides of moving to a new location...not being comfortable in the places you want to be, like a grocery store. 


1 (3 1/2- to 4-pound) boneless beef chuck-eye roast , trimmed of excess fat and cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes

1/3 cup sweet paprika 
1 (12-ounce) jar roasted red peppers , drained and rinsed (about 1 cup)
2 tablespoons tomato paste
3 teaspoons white vinegar
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
4 large onions , diced small (about 6 cups)
4 large carrots , peeled and cut into 1-inch-thick rounds (about 2 cups)
1 bay leaf
1 cup beef broth , warmed
1/4 cup sour cream

Ground black pepper


1. Adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees. Sprinkle meat evenly with 1 teaspoon salt and let stand 15 minutes. Process paprika, roasted peppers, tomato paste, and 2 teaspoons vinegar in food processor until smooth, 1 to 2 minutes, scraping down sides as needed.

2. Combine oil, onions, and 1 teaspoon salt in large Dutch oven; cover and set over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until onions soften but have not yet begun to brown, 8 to 10 minutes. (If onions begin to brown, reduce heat to medium-low and stir in 1 tablespoon water.)

3. Stir in paprika mixture; cook, stirring occasionally, until onions stick to bottom of pan, about 2 minutes. Add beef, carrots, and bay leaf; stir until beef is well coated. Using rubber spatula, scrape down sides of pot. Cover pot and transfer to oven. Cook until meat is almost tender and surface of liquid is ½ inch below top of meat, 2 to 21/2 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. Remove pot from oven and add enough beef broth so that surface of liquid is ¼ inch from top of meat (beef should not be fully submerged). Return covered pot to oven and continue to cook until fork slips easily in and out of beef, about 30 minutes longer.

4. Skim fat off surface; stir in remaining teaspoon vinegar and sour cream, if using. Remove bay leaf, adjust seasonings with salt and pepper, and serve.

(Source: Cooks Illustrated)