Thursday, April 22, 2010

Mango Chutney


Two summers ago I decided I really liked Major Grey's Mango Chutney, and wanted to try every brand of mango chutney I could find to see what the differences were and which one I would like best. The one I liked best was by Sun Brand; it was very thick and the mango was in large, firm chunks. It also was sweet (but not too sweet) and not hot, but you could taste the ginger. When they stopped carrying Sun Brand Major Grey's Chutney locally, I looked up the Sun Brand ingredients and made up the following recipe that tastes very similar.

Ingredients:


2 Mangoes, peeled and cut (into mostly
1 inch pieces)

Fresh ginger, 2”x 1”, peeled and grated or minced very fine


¼ cup raisins


1 Tbsp. red bell pepper, diced

1/2 cup white granulated sugar

1/2 cup red wine vinegar

1/2 tsp. salt


Dash cayenne pepper

1 Tbsp. cornstarch, mixed with 1 Tbsp. water


Directions:


Combine all ingredients, except cornstarch and water, in a 3-4 quart pot. Bring to a boil and simmer for 25 minutes, stirring occasionally. You want the liquid to thicken and cook down as much as possible without sticking, so you will have to adjust the heat down as time goes on. Then slowly add the cornstarch and water mixture to the mango mixture, stirring constantly – you may not need to add it all, just enough so mixture is totally thickened. Cook for about 5 more minutes while mixture is thickening. Put in a jar or bowl to refrigerate. Serve cold. Goes well with grilled meat, chicken or fish, also with cream cheese and crackers/bagels.














Monday, April 19, 2010

Tzatziki


Ingredients:


2 lb. container non-fat plain yogurt, drained through cheesecloth (see step 1 under instructions)
1 large English cucumber, grated on medium/large setting, drained (step 2 under instructions)
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 clove garlic, pressed
1 Tbsp. fresh mint, finely chopped
1 Tbsp. fresh dill, finely chopped
Sea salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, taste

Directions:

(1) To prepare the yogurt (so it is like Greek-style yogurt), you have to drain as much liquid as possible from the yogurt. To do this you will need: cheesecloth, a colander, a large bowl/pot that the colander will fit into (to catch the liquid), and a small plate and/or bowl to set on top as a press. First, set the colander into the bowl/pot. Then line the colander with the cheesecloth (use a long enough piece of cheesecloth so there is extra on each side -- for folding over the yogurt). Set the yogurt on top of the cheesecloth, and fold the sides of the cheesecloth over the top of the yogurt. Set the plate and/or bowl over the top as a weight (to drain the liquid faster). Cover with plastic wrap and set in the refrigerator at least 4 hours or can be left overnight. Discard the yogurt liquid.

(2) In more cheesecloth, put the grated cucumber, gather excess cloth on top, and with your hands, squeeze out as much of the liquid from the cucumbers as you can.

(3) In a large bowl, add together the drained yogurt and drained, grated cucumber. Mix well. Add the remaining ingredients -- lemon juice, garlic, mint, dill, salt and pepper, to taste. Mix well.

It is ready to be served, with pitas, or alone, as a side dish.


Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Crepes with Fresh Berries

Crepes with strawberries and raspberries
Like the crepes they made at Restaurant St. Michel....even if these were not on the menu, you could ask and they would make them for you!

To make 6-8 medium size crepes (serves 1-2/person):

Ingredients for Crepes:

 1/2 cup flour
1 tsp. sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
1 egg, extra-large
1 cup milk
1 Tbsp. butter, melted

Ingredients to assemble the Crepes:

Fresh berries -- raspberries or a mixture of raspberries and sliced strawberries, rinsed and dried

Freshly whipped cream, sweetened with sugar and vanilla extract to taste, and a dash of fresh ground nutmeg.

Powdered confectioner's sugar

Honey

Directions:

In a medium sized bowl, whisk egg until light and frothy, then add milk and beat together. Add flour, sugar and salt and mix well. Add melted butter and mix well. Let set for a few minutes, but whisk again before adding to the pan. The batter should resemble a very thin pancake batter, if not add a little more milk or flour, until it is the right consistency.

Heat a small (about 8") non-stick pan to med-low and brush lightly with vegetable oil. Once the pan is heated, add a scant 1/4 cup of the crepe mixture to it, and tilt pan quickly to swirl mixture around and evenly coat the pan. It should cover most or all of the pan in a fairly thin coating. Let cook until lightly browned (edges will be more browned, but needs to cook enough so it is easier to turn over) and can lift easily from sides to flip. Loosen edges, then flip it like a pancake, only a little more gently, to brown the other side. Remove from pan when done and put on an individual serving plate (or can be gently stacked as you make more on a larger plate). Repeat process, and when all crepes have been cooked, assemble them like this:

Assembly:

On one crepe laid out flat on a plate, add a handful of berries to one side, then fold the other side of the crepe over (or can roll to hide the ends). Top with a dollop of the freshly whipped and sweetened cream, then sprinkle with a good amount of powdered confectioners sugar (use a small sieve for this). Over the powdered sugar, drizzle some honey (a small amount, but enough, and decoratively applied). It is now ready to serve -- 1 or 2 per person. Repeat until all crepes have been assembled that will be served immediately.

Note: Recipe makes 2 crepes per person/ for 4 people and can be doubled.
Bon appetit!