“Gold Rush” Strawberry Lemondade

This recipe is actually Emeril’s Strawberry Lemonade that appeared in Martha Stewart’s Everyday Food Magazine last month. But our family renamed it “Goldrush” lemonade because it cost me a fortune! Please, be smarter than I was and check the price of lemons before you make this. It IS very good and worth making…

Squeeze those lemons! It takes a lot to make one cup....

I think that was something like 6 or 7 lemons!

 

Make a simple syrup and chill it...

Wash and hull some pretty strawberries

Stick them in the blender

Puree them

So yummy and refreshing!

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup fresh lemon juice (from 6 lemons), plus 1 lemon, sliced, for serving
  • 1 pound strawberries (3 cups), hulled and halved
  • 16 ounces seltzer, chilled

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring 2 cups water and sugar to a boil over medium-high. Reduce to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until sugar dissolves, 2 minutes. Transfer to a pitcher and refrigerate until cool, about 45 minutes. Add lemon juice and stir to combine.
  2. In a blender, puree strawberries until smooth. Pour through a fine-mesh sieve into pitcher with lemon syrup, pressing on solids. Stir well to combine. (Apparently my sieve was not fine enough so this was pointless…the seeds are not that bad though)
  3. To serve, stir in seltzer and divide among ice-filled glasses. Top with lemon slices or mint to make it pretty.

P3 (That’s Puff Pastry Pizza!)

I tried a little something new for a pizza crust this week; puff pastry dough sheets! The crust was light and flaky and wasn’t as heavy or filling as regular pizza.  Here’s what I did:

Ingredients:
1 box (2 sheets) frozen puff pastry dough, defrosted 40 minutes
1 can Italian stewed tomatoes, pureed
1 package Italian Blend shredded cheese
1/2 cup Romano shredded cheese
real bacon pieces
sun dried tomatoes
fresh basil
sliced button mushrooms
grilled chicken, shredded or chopped

1. First, I opened up the puff pastry dough packaging and pulled the two doughs apart from one another. I let them warm up on the counter for about 40 minutes.

2. I grilled my chicken and cooked the mushrooms and sun-dried tomatoes for just  a few minutes once I pulled the chicken off the skillet. I shredded the chicken into small pieces and I cheated and used already cooked, pre-packaged REAL bacon pieces.

3.  On a lightly floured surface, unfold one piece of dough. Lightly cover with flour and roll out so that it is a scooch longer and thinner. Then pierce the dough all over with a fork. Transfer to a cookie sheet (I put parchment paper down because I don’t like to clean if I don’t have to) and bake as directed (I think it’s 350) for about 10 minutes. The dough will puff up like a big pillow but don’t worry. The dough will deflate when you take it out of the oven.

4. After the dough was baked, I pureed my italian stewed tomatoes and topped the crust with the “sauce”. I then added a few spices to the sauce; salt, pepper and some garlic powder. Next time, I will add some fennel. Begin to build your pizza with your toppings. Once you have it how you like it, pop it in the oven for just about 10 minutes to allow the cheese to melt. Voila! Fun and crusty pizza.

P.S. I made a cheese pizza for the kids since I knew they wouldn’t like my concoction!

Simple Balsamic Vinaigrette

This salad dressing totally rocked my socks tonight! I had to toss it up (get it?) on She Cooks! ASAP! I did not author this one-it’s straight from Emeril Lagasse. I highly recommend you do this in the blender or if you have an immersion blender, use the wisk attachment on a tall cylinder. Mmmm…this is heavenly over Arugula with some gorgonzola cheese, some purple onion and tomatoes! YUMMY!

Ingredients:

1/4 C balsamic vinegar
2 t dark brown sugar
1 T chopped garlic
1/2 t salt
1/2 t freshly ground black pepper
3/4 C EVOO

Directions:

1. Beat the vinegar, sugar, garlic, salt and pepper until all are nicely dissolved. With the immersion blender (use the whisk attachment), slowly add the EVOO while the whisk is running. The dressing will turn into a lovely thickness in about 1 minutes!

(I’ll post pics tomorrow…too tired tonight!)

DIY Chicken Broth

I am a firm believer in DIY chicken broth. You can do it all sorts of ways, but here’s how I do it generally. I don’t have counts for you in terms of how much it makes, but I’ll guess 4-6 cups. Trust me, it’s richer and more flavorful than store bought varieties and you can jazz it up in a lot of fun ways. This is a good task to do in the afternoon say around 1 pm while you are cleaning or something. Makes the house smell yummy.

1. Take 1 rotisserie chicken and remove the meat. Set aside the skin, bones, etc. When I pick a chicken, I leave the wings and even the drummies often times. If you are one of those weirdos who throws out the thigh meat (Crystal), then put that in the pot with the bones too.

2. Place chicken parts (bones, skin, etc) in a large stock pot. Cover with cold water. Place on the stove and bring to a boil at medium high heat. Allow to simmer on low/medium for 30 to 45 minutes.

3. Remove from heat and allow to cool about an hour.

4. Grab a large bowl and place a strainer in the bowl. Pour the contents of your soup/stock pot out into the bowl, then just lift out the strainer. Toss the “stuff” you fish out and then voila! You have magnificent broth.

Fun Tips:

Try adding some fun and tasty things into the broth while it simmers. Perhaps some cloves of garlic (smoosh ’em alla Rachel Ray style with the side of a knife), some fresh rosemary, basil, thyme or other herb. You shouldn’t need salt or pepper, because the chicken was already seasoned when it was cooked.