Lunds & Byerlys REAL FOOD Spring 2019

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A Taste of Spring Celebrate the season with gloriously green asparagus



PASTA, THE ITALIAN WAY: Simple, fresh and flavorful GO-TO DISHES: Approachable family-friendly meals MORE WITH LESS: Delicious clean eating for any day

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real food spring 2019

20 Pasta, the Italian Way Dress pasta with clean and simple fresh ingredients for true Italian flair BY ERICA DE MANE

30 Spring Spears Celebrate the season with gloriously green asparagus BY ROBIN ASBELL

40 Go-To Dishes Approachable family meals that make everyone happy time and again RECIPES BY JENNIFER SEGAL

46 More With Less Make clean eating part of every day with deliciously simple yet flavorful whole-food dishes RECIPES BY JODI MORENO

52 Harnessing Flavor Christopher Kimball on a new approach to cooking BY TARA Q. THOMAS

Departments 4 Bites Celebration bread RECIPES BY ZOË FRANÇOIS AND JEFF HERTZBERG

6 Kitchen Skills Egg cookery: perfect omelets and poached eggs BY JASON ROSS

8 Contributors 17 Ingredient Avocados: nutritious and versatile BY LIANNA MATT

18 Healthy Habits Finding balance while managing diabetes BY ANNA BJORLIN

56 Pairings Cheers to brunch cocktails BY MARY SUBIALKA

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Our Cover

Seared Scallops in Cream Over Roasted Asparagus (page 39) Photograph by Terry Brennan Food styling by Lara Miklasevics


VOLUME 15, NUMBER 1 Real Food magazine is published quarterly by Greenspring Media, LLC, 706 Second Ave. S, Suite 1000, Minneapolis, MN 55402, 612.371.5800, Fax 612.371.5801. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reprinted or otherwise reproduced without written permission from the publisher. Real Food is exclusively operated and owned by Greenspring Media, LLC. Printed in the USA.

The pages between the covers of this magazine (except for any inserted material) are printed on paper made from wood fiber that was procured from forests that are sustainably managed to remain healthy, productive and biologically diverse.

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Breaking Bread Celebration breads from savory to sweet bring most every culture together


uring holidays when you gather with family and friends, there’s only one thing that’s more guaranteed than having to scout out potential post-meal nap spots, and that’s having an abundance of food. And no matter which holidays you celebrate, there is often bread on the table. From fancier options such as braided challah to the utility players that are dinner rolls, bread has the ability to tie the entire meal together. With the ubiquity of bread, it’s not a surprise that every culture has its great bread traditions. In their new book, “Holiday and Celebration Bread in 5 Minutes a Day: Sweet and Decadent Baking for Every Occasion,” Zoë François and Jeff Hertzberg share approachable baking methods to create savory and sweet breads for every occasion. Here are recipes from their book to try out at your next spring holiday gathering or anytime you want to enjoy home-baked treats. —Kyle Smelter


1½ cups lukewarm water (100°F or below) 1 tablespoon granulated yeast 1 tablespoon kosher salt 8 large eggs, lightly beaten ½ cup honey 1½ cups (3 sticks) unsalted butter, melted, plus butter for greasing the pan 7½ cups all-purpose flour 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg 1 teaspoon ground allspice 2 teaspoons orange zest, grated 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 1½ cups currants or raisins egg wash (1 egg yolk with 1 tablespoon water), for brushing buns Icing 4 ounces cream cheese 2 ounces unsalted butter, room temperature ½ cup confectioners’ sugar ¼ cup maple syrup 1. Mix the water, yeast, salt, eggs, honey and melted butter in a 6-quart bowl, or a lidded (not airtight) food container. 2. Mix in the flour, spices, zest, vanilla extract and raisins without kneading, using a spoon or a heavy-duty stand mixer

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(with paddle). If you’re not using a machine, you may need to use wet hands to incorporate the last bit of flour. The dough will be loose but will firm up when chilled; don’t try to work with it before chilling. Cover (not airtight), and allow to rest at room temperature for 2 hours, then refrigerate. 3. The dough can be used as soon as it’s thoroughly chilled, at least 3 hours. Refrigerate the container and use over the next 5 days. 4. On baking day, dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 2-pound (cantaloupe-size) piece. Divide the dough into 9 equal pieces and quickly shape into balls. Place 2 inches apart on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and rest at room temperature for about 45 minutes. 5. Preheat the oven to 350°F, with a rack placed in the center of the oven. 6. Brush the tops with egg wash and place the baking sheet in the oven. Bake for about 25 minutes, or until richly browned. 7. To make the icing, mix the cream cheese, butter, confectioners’ sugar and maple syrup in a small bowl. 8. Allow to cool completely. Pipe the icing in a cross over the top of each bun. There will be extra icing for spreading on the buns.


These crowd-pleasing buns hail from the British Isles, where they are eaten on Good Friday. Even before the introduction of Christianity to England, Saxons made buns marked with a cross to celebrate the goddess Eostre, the namesake of this holiday, a tradition which was later incorporated into the celebration of the Resurrection. Many legends surround hot cross buns. For example, some believe that hot cross buns baked for Easter will never go bad and can be kept as a good luck charm. Some chefs even claim that keeping a leftover bun hanging in the kitchen prevents breads from getting burnt. We think an oven timer works better for that, but we do know that this recipe will satisfy your Easter sweet tooth every year.


When Czech immigrants came to the United States in the 19th and early 20th centuries, they brought the kolache, a buttery roll filled with fruit or poppy seeds. Once the dessert of simple peasants, kolache came to be served at occasions ranging from church fundraisers to weddings. Even today, Czech-American communities across the Great Plains, including New Prague in our own home state of Minnesota, celebrate their heritage with annual kolache festivals. The world’s largest known kolache, weighing in at 2,605 pounds, was made in Prague, Nebraska, but your family will be just as impressed by these bite-sized versions. 1½ pounds (small cantaloupe–size portion) Amish-Style Milk Bread dough (see recipe right) all-purpose flour, for dusting egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water), for brushing the loaf 1 cup filling (such as almond cream, applesauce or prune filling) 1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper or a silicone mat. 2. Dust the surface of the refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a 1½-pound (small cantaloupe-size) piece. Dust the piece with more flour and quickly shape it into a rough ball by stretching the surface of the dough around to the bottom, rotating the ball a quarter-turn as you go. 3. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out to a ½-inch-thick rectangle, about 8×9 inches, adding flour as needed to prevent sticking. 4. Using a 3-inch round cookie cutter, cut out about a dozen circles. (Return the scraps to the bucket of dough to use later.) Lay the dough rounds on the prepared baking sheet, cover loosely with plastic wrap, and allow to rest at room temperature for 45 minutes; they should be very soft and puffy. 5. Preheat the oven to 350°F, with a rack placed in the center of the oven. 6. Make an indent in the middle of each dough round, about 1½ inches in diameter. Fill that indent with 2 tablespoons of your prepared filling of choice. Brush the exposed edges with the egg wash. 7. Bake the pastries for about 20 minutes, or until the dough is golden brown. Serve warm or cooled.


Amish-Style Milk Bread MAKES 2 (2-POUND) LOAVES

2½ cups whole milk 2 large eggs 1 tablespoon granulated yeast 1 tablespoon kosher salt 1/3 cup sugar 6¼ cups all-purpose flour ¼ cup potato flour 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted and slightly cooled 1. Mix the milk, eggs, yeast, salt and sugar in a 6-quart bowl or a lidded (not airtight) food container. 2. Mix the flours and butter with the milk mixture without kneading, using a heavy-duty stand mixer (with paddle), a Danish dough whisk or a spoon. 3. Cover (not airtight), allow to rest at room temperature for 2 hours, and then refrigerate. 4. The dough can be used as soon as it’s thoroughly chilled, at least 3 hours. Refrigerate the container and use over the next 5 days. 5. Proceed to Kolache recipe step 2 for preparing and baking Kolache with this dough. Cook’s Note: To make into a loaf, dust refrigerated dough with flour and cut off a cantaloupe-size portion, form into an oval, and place in a greased 81/2x 41/2-inch nonstick loaf pan. Cover loosely with plastic wrap and rest at room temp for 90 minutes. Brush top with egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water) and bake at 350°F for about 50 minutes. Remove from pan to cool. 

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kitchen skills

Egg Cookery While seemingly simple, omelet and poached egg-making skills deserve attention and respect BY JASON ROSS


chef’s toque, the tall and pleated hat, is a symbol of rank and expertise in the restaurant kitchen. Each pleat, according to kitchen lore, represents a different type of egg cookery that the chef has mastered. While it may seem simple, egg cooking requires a special type of attention and versatility. The egg is central to recipes and classic dishes across cultures and cuisines. And like most simple techniques, the more we dig, the more subtle complications we find. Here we tackle two egg dishes that can prove frustrating—the omelet and poached eggs—and offer tips for success.

Poached Eggs MAKES 1 SERVING

A poached egg is an elegant and purist egg cooking technique. Use it for breakfast or just as easily on top of a salad or a sautéed steak. The technique is not complicated and only uses two ingredients—fresh eggs and hot water. The rest is a bit of patience. 1. Fill a nonstick pan with 1 to 2 inches of water. On high heat, bring water to a simmer, then reduce heat to low to keep the gentlest bubble of a simmer. 2. Crack 4 eggs and carefully add them to the hot water, putting each egg in a different spot in the pan and leaving space between each egg. 3. Cook on very low heat for 2 to 3 minutes covered with a lid. 4. Use a fish spatula or thin metal spatula and slide under eggs if they stick to the bottom of pan. 5. Cook eggs for another 2 to 3 minutes, for a total of roughly 4 to 5 minutes for an egg with a runny yolk, or 6 to 7 minutes for a fully cooked and solid poached egg.

POACHED EGG TIPS: • To avoid little strings of egg white on poached eggs, use the freshest eggs possible. Fresh eggs can last well up to a month, but as they age, the egg whites become watery and thin. • Use just enough water to cover the eggs as they cook—1 or 2 inches is plenty. Too much water makes it harder to find eggs in the poaching water. • Do not let the water boil. A gentle heat, barely a simmer, helps keep the egg in a nice compact shape. • To serve poached eggs for large groups, transfer the poached eggs from hot poaching water to a bowl of ice water. Store the ice water bowl (and eggs) in the refrigerator for up to 4 hours. Then warm them in hot water for 1 minute before serving. PHOTOGRAPHY TERRY BRENNAN FOOD STYLING LARA MIKLASEVICS

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Classic American Omelet MAKES 1 SERVING

Perfect for breakfast or dinner, the omelet is the standard for egg cookery technique. Use a good nonstick pan and rubber spatula to make the classic folded omelet. 3 eggs 1 tablespoon butter pinch of salt pinch ground pepper ½ cup omelet filling

Omelet Filling Options shredded cheese chopped spinach and cheese ham and cheese

bacon and diced potato sautéed mushrooms sautéed pepper and onions

1. In a medium sized bowl, using a fork, whisk eggs until all whites are fully incorporated and the mixture is smooth and creamy. 2. Heat a non-stick medium sized (8-inch) pan on medium heat. Add butter and melt until it is frothy but not yet brown. 3. Pour in eggs. Gently shake and tilt the pan to distribute eggs around the pan. 4. Cook the eggs to form a skin on the bottom of the pan for roughly 1 minute. Next, using a silicon spatula or wooden spoon, pull the eggs from the side of the pan and pull toward the center. This will leave an empty space in the pan where you pulled the eggs. Tilt the pan and pour raw egg mixture into that empty space. Repeat this process in different areas around the edge of the pan 2 to 3 times. Each time pull cooked eggs along the bottom of the pan toward the center, and swirl uncooked eggs from the top to fill in the space. Repeat until the eggs have set enough that there are no longer any liquid eggs on top. The bottom of the omelet will be nearly golden brown and the top surface will still be a bit wet and shiny, but not liquid and runny. 5. Sprinkle a pinch of salt and pepper, and add optional omelet filling across half the omelet. 6. Next tilt the pan and use the spatula to fold the omelet in half over the filling and lower onto a plate. Serve immediately.

OMELET TIPS: • Besides the classic fillings listed here, an omelet is a great place to be creative or even use up leftovers. Cooked broccoli from last night’s dinner is perfect with some cheese melted in an omelet. Cooked potatoes, shrimp, herbs piling up in the garden, pico de gallo, some steak or lonely cold cuts could all easily find a delicious spot in your omelet as well. • I find mixing eggs with a fork works well for small quantities. If mixing 12 or more eggs, a whisk works better.


• Having trouble with a runny omelet? Don’t panic. Just turn off the heat and put a lid on the pan. The residual heat in the pan and in the cooked omelet will tighten up the runny eggs in a few minutes. Open the pan and serve without fear. 

POACHED EGG: PER SERVING: CALORIES 78 (48 from fat); FAT 5g (sat. 2g); CHOL 187mg; SODIUM 62mg; CARB 1g; FIBER 0g; PROTEIN 6g

SPINACH & FETA OMELET: PER SERVING: CALORIES 435 (315 from fat); FAT 35g (sat. 18g); CHOL 623mg; SODIUM 792mg; CARB 4g; FIBER 0g; PROTEIN 25g

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Robin Asbell spreads the

word about how truly delicious and beautiful whole, real foods can be through her work as an author, cooking teacher and private chef. She likes to create delicious dishes that range from meat and seafood to beans and grains using global flavors. Her latest book is “300 Best Blender Recipes Using Your Vitamix.” She is also the author of “Great Bowls of Food: Grain Bowls, Buddha Bowls, Broth Bowls and More”; “Juice It!”; “Big Vegan: Over 350 Recipes, No Meat, No Dairy, All Delicious”; “The New Vegetarian”; and “Gluten-Free Pasta.”

Lara Miklasevics began her

food career on the other side of the camera, cooking at the renowned New French Café in Minneapolis. Today her work as a stylist is in demand at corporations including Heinz, Target and General Mills, as well as with many magazines. She prides herself on using her experience as a chef to make food as appealing on the page as it is on the plate.

Jodi Moreno is a natural foods

chef, recipe developer, stylist and creator of the What’s Cooking Good Looking blog. She is enthusiastic about healthy living, delicious food, and showing people that vegetables can play a main role on the plate in flavorful recipes. After attending culinary school, she began sharing her meals on her blog, which has been named twice by Saveur magazine as a finalist for the best overall cooking blog and was a PBS best blog of the year. Her work has been featured in Vogue, Better Homes and Gardens, Saveur, Food52 and Bon Appetit. She lives in New York City and Amagansett, NY, with her husband, Michael, and her dog, Bayley.

Terry Brennan is a

Erica De Mane became

infatuated with cooking as a teenager, drawing inspiration from her Southern Italian-American family’s kitchen. She cooked in restaurants including Le Madri and Florent in Manhattan and has written articles on Italian cooking for Food & Wine, The New York Times, Gourmet, Fine Cooking and other publications. On her blog at, she posts improvisational Italian recipes and cooking videos as well as on Facebook and YouTube. Her cookbook, “Pasta Improvvisata,” which was published in 1999, was singled out for praise by The New York Times in its twiceyearly cookbook roundup. De Mane also gives private and group cooking classes on Southern Italian cooking and the Mediterranean diet. She lives in Manhattan.

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photographer based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Clients include Target, General Mills, Land O’Lakes and Hormel. “Working with Real Food is a highlight for me—I look forward to every issue. I love working with the creative team and, of course, sampling the wonderful recipes.”

Jason Ross is a chef consultant

for restaurants and hotels, developing menus and concepts for multiple high profile properties. He trained and grew up in New York City, but now calls St. Paul, Minnesota, home where he teaches the next generation of chefs at Saint Paul College Culinary School.

Tara Q. Thomas intended to

be a chef when she trained at the Culinary Institute of America in New York but got sidetracked by wine. She has been writing about it for nearly 20 years now, most prominently at Wine & Spirits Magazine, where she is executive editor. Author of “The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Wine Basics” and a contributor to “The Oxford Companion to Cheese” and the forthcoming “The Oxford Companion to Spirits and Cocktails,” she also sits on the advisory panel for the International Culinary Center’s Sommelier Training Program. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, juggling a laptop and two small children—and still cooks nearly nightly, albeit for a smaller crowd.

Lunds & Byerlys welcome

Bloomington: 952-896-0092 Burnsville: 952-892-5600 Chanhassen: 952-474-1298 Eagan: 651-686-9669 Eden Prairie: 952-525-8000 Edina 50th Street: 952-926-6833 France Avenue: 952-831-3601 Golden Valley: 763-544-8846 Maple Grove: 763-416-1611 Minneapolis Downtown: 612-379-5040 Northeast: 612-548-3820 Uptown: 612-825-2440 Minnetonka Glen Lake: 952-512-7700 Highway 7: 952-935-0198 Ridgedale: 952-541-1414 Navarre: 952-471-8473 Plymouth: 763-268-1624 Prior Lake: 952-440-3900 Richfield: 612-861-1881 Roseville: 651-633-6949 St. Cloud: 320-252-4112 St. Louis Park: 952-929-2100 St. Paul Downtown: 651-999-1600 Highland Park: 651-698-5845 Wayzata: 952-476-2222 White Bear Lake: 651-653-0000 Woodbury: 651-999-1200


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Community Partner T

his past fall we had the opportunity to open our newest Lunds & Byerlys in White Bear Lake. As a local, family-owned company, these are always momentous occasions for us as we bring our brand of quality, service and expertise to new families. These moments also serve as a great reminder that opening a grocery store is about so much more than selling groceries. It’s an opportunity to begin building meaningful and lasting relationships with those we serve. And, for us, doing so means many things. It means having a deep sense of care and compassion for our customers. Genuine hospitality, you might say. It means being an involved community partner. And it means sourcing products that represent a level of quality we’re proud to serve to our family and friends. Our remarkable staff is working hard every day to deliver on all of these promises, and a couple recent examples help bring that to light. For years we’ve been committed to providing you with more and more organic offerings. We are also committed to helping our local organic farming community through our annual Organic Farming Grant. This year we awarded our grant to The Good Acre. They are doing great work in

our community to not only serve as an invaluable resource for organic farmers throughout the Twin Cities, but also in getting a significant amount of the produce grown on those farms sent to local school districts so school lunches can include locally grown organic produce. You can read more about The Good Acre on page 13. Our focus on local also extends to sourcing products throughout every department of our stores. We even offer a wild-caught salmon that has a local angle. We’ve partnered with Surrender Salmon to provide you with a Responsibly Sourced sockeye salmon from Bristol Bay, Alaska. All of the salmon are caught by the Niver family, who lives right here in the Twin Cities during the winter months. See the story on pages 10-11 to learn more about our partnership with Surrender Salmon. We thank you for choosing to shop at Lunds & Byerlys and hope you continue to enjoy Real Food.


Tres Lund President and CEO

FOOD QUESTIONS? Call our FoodE Experts: 952-548-1400

REAL FOOD COMMENTS Aaron Sorenson: 952-927-3663 real food 9

Lunds & Byerlys xxxxxxx

Surrender Salmon Bringing Alaska’s “red gold” to the Land of 10,000 Lakes BY SCOTT KERSTING, DIRECTOR OF MEAT AND SEAFOOD The Niver family fishes aboard their boat, the F/V Surrender, on the pristine waters of Bristol Bay, Alaska.


urrender Salmon’s sockeye salmon comes to you straight from Bristol Bay, Alaska. Spectacular, vast and thriving, Bristol Bay is home to six major river systems that welcome the largest wild sockeye salmon run in the world—over 61 million sockeye made their way up the watershed in 2018. It’s here that the Niver family fishes aboard their boat, the F/V Surrender. Although they fish in Alaska, the Nivers’ story has strong Minnesota roots. It’s here, in Prior Lake, where patriarch Mark Niver was born and raised. As a teenager, he spent summers working in a fishing cannery in Bristol Bay. Not long after graduation, he moved to Alaska full time and eventually began commercial fishing with his three brothers on their boat, F/V Miss Dore. After falling in love with Alaska, Mark raised his family in Wasilla, where his three sons, Grant, Blake and Bryce, fished the same pristine

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waters. The boys literally grew up on the boat, and as soon as they were old enough to safely work, they became deckhands on the F/V Surrender. In 2011, the eldest son, Grant, moved to Minnesota to attend Augsburg College. Grant quickly took to the Midwestern way of life, but missed the abundance of fresh sockeye salmon he was accustomed to at home. After noticing a lack of reliable wild sockeye salmon in local Minnesota grocery stores, Grant began bringing back hundreds of pounds of sockeye salmon fillets to share with friends and family in Minnesota. As time went on, Grant was surprised to learn just how much Minnesotans loved buying the “red gold” directly from the fishermen. Just a few years later, in January 2016, Surrender Salmon, LLC was born. The family-owned, fishermen-owned small business has a goal of providing Alaska’s finest and freshest wild sockeye salmon

Lunds & Byerlys meat and seafood

to the people of Minnesota while putting a face to the source of your salmon. With Surrender Salmon, you can truly know your fishermen and know exactly where your food is coming from. Each summer, the Nivers fly out to Bristol Bay and spend the entire summer harvesting wild salmon during the peak sockeye season, which ensures it’s available for you year-round. Surrender Salmon is wild caught, which means the salmon mature at a natural pace and swim freely in the waters of Bristol Bay. Every sustainably caught sockeye salmon is handpicked by the Niver family. It’s then bled to eliminate blood and natural bacteria from the salmon, and immediately refrigerated using a special sea water refrigeration system onboard the F/V Surrender until they reach shore. Then it’s flash frozen, which locks in the ocean-fresh taste and authentic wild sockeye salmon color. Surrender Salmon’s sockeye salmon has been embraced by customers due to its incredibly rich flavor, firm texture and distinctive deep red color. The superior flavor comes from the salmon feeding on a natural diet of marine organisms and the texture comes from the annual migrations in the cold north Pacific Ocean. Not only does the salmon taste good, but it’s also good for you. It’s low in saturated fat and high in heart-healthy Omega-3 oils, which makes it a healthy, delicious option and a staple protein choice for many. Another reason we love our partnership with Surrender Salmon is that charitable giving and community involvement are at the foundation of the business. As a local, family-owned company, it is dedicated to giving back to the communities in which the Nivers live and serve. And that often means sharing the salmon with others, like donating hundreds of salmon meals to Open Arms of Minnesota or sponsoring events for the Parkinson’s Foundation Minnesota. We’re proud to partner with this wonderful company to provide you with the best salmon possible. Stop by our meat and seafood department to try Surrender Salmon for yourself! 

Surrender Salmon is a local, family-owned business operated by Blake, Mark, Grant and Bryce Niver.


Every sustainably caught sockeye salmon is handpicked by the Niver family.

Turn to the next page for some delicious salmon recipes >> real food 11

Lunds & Byerlys meat and seafood

Salmon with Raspberry Chipotle Glaze MAKES 2 SERVINGS

This irresistible salmon is perfect paired with jasmine rice and sautéed snap peas.

2 (6-ounce) salmon fillets ¼ teaspoon kosher salt ¼ teaspoon freshly ground pepper 1 tablespoon olive oil ⅓ cup Bronco Bob’s Roasted Raspberry Chipotle Sauce 4 cups baby spinach ⅓ cup raspberries

Cajun Salmon with Mango Salsa MAKES 4 SERVINGS

Boring salmon no more! This sweet salsa is bursting with flavor and perfectly complements the spicy Cajun-seasoned salmon. For the Salsa 1 ripe mango, peeled and diced ¼ cup diced red bell pepper ¼ cup diced red onion 2 tablespoons fresh cilantro, minced 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice 1 teaspoon L&B Cajun Seasoning salt, to taste

For the Salmon 4 (6- to 8-ounce) salmon fillets, skin removed 1 tablespoon olive oil 2 tablespoons L&B Cajun Seasoning salt, to taste

1. For the salsa: In a medium bowl, stir together mango, red bell pepper, onion, cilantro, lime juice, Cajun seasoning and salt. Cover and refrigerate 2 to 4 hours. Bring to room temperature before serving. 2. For the salmon: Heat oven to 375°F. Spray a baking sheet with cooking spray or line it with parchment paper. 3. Rinse salmon; pat dry with paper towels. Brush both sides of salmon with olive oil. Rub Cajun seasoning and salt onto both sides of salmon. 4. Place salmon skin-side down on the baking sheet and bake for 12 to 15 minutes, until the fish flakes easily with a fork. 5. Place salmon fillets on serving platter; spoon mango salsa over fish and serve immediately.

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1. Rinse salmon; pat dry with paper towels. 2. Heat nonstick skillet over medium-high heat for 2 minutes. Season salmon with salt and pepper. Add oil to skillet; swirl to coat. Add salmon, skin side down. Sear for 2 minutes per side. Reduce heat to medium-low; cook until salmon begins to flake with a fork, about 4 to 6 minutes. 3. Transfer salmon to a plate and cover with foil to keep warm. Pour sauce in pan and simmer 1 to 2 minutes. 4. Return salmon to skillet; coat with sauce, turning once or twice. Transfer salmon back to plate. Add spinach to skillet and stir until wilted, about 1 to 2 minutes. Divide spinach between two serving plates and arrange salmon over spinach. Garnish with fresh raspberries. 

Lunds & Byerlys community support

Bringing Local, Organic Produce to School Lunches Lunds & Byerlys awards 2018 Organic Farming Grant to The Good Acre

The Good Acre is a state-of-the-art, nonprofit food hub in Falcon Heights, Minnesota.


hree years ago we launched the Lunds & Byerlys Organic Farming Grant to help support our local organic farming community. In 2016 and 2017, the grants went to dairy farmers transitioning from conventional to organic farms. This year we are awarding our grant to The Good Acre, a state-of-the-art, nonprofit food hub in Falcon Heights. They opened their doors in 2015 with a mission to “connect and strengthen farmers, food makers and communities through good food.” The Good Acre was the brainchild of three women in the Pohlad family—Lindsay, Allie and Sara. Their goal was to create a venue that would assist in the development of a sustainable food system for the Twin Cities region by working with retailers, employers, schools and local independent farmers to provide training and good food to the community. Our team toured The Good Acre in June 2018 and can attest that they have exceeded their goal. They offer a commercial kitchen, cooking classes, farmto-school training, grower education and wholesale fresh produce. It’s an impressive accomplishment in just three years! More than 20 diverse farms across the Twin Cities supply produce to The Good Acre. In return, The Good Acre offers farmers access to their facilities, which are certified organic and Ben Doherty and Erin Johnson, food safe, where they can deliver, Open Hands Farm owners wash, aggregate and pack their

produce for delivery. A large portion of the produce collected at The Good Acre goes to Twin Cities school districts. We love how this provides children with locally grown fresh produce for school lunches. This year our Lunds & Byerlys Organic Farming Grant will help support two produce farms that partner with The Good Acre—Seed to Seed Organic Farm in Balsam Lake, Wisconsin, and Open Hands Organic Farm in Northfield, Minnesota. Through The Good Acre partnership and our grant, the farms will supply organic produce to four middle schools in the Robbinsdale school district. Typically, it is difficult for the schools to purchase organic produce because of the higher cost, but our grant money will be applied to help The Good Acre sell the produce to the schools at a discounted rate. As part of our partnership with The Good Acre, we also developed some delicious, kid-friendly recipes that feature the farms’ organic carrots and Brussels sprouts. These recipes were served at the middle schools! We also had the opportunity to visit the schools and educate the kids on the importance of local, organic and fresh produce. For more information on The Good Acre, visit

Ariel Pressman, Seed to Seed Farm owner real food 13

Lunds & Byerlys what’s in store

L&B SEASONED PRETZELS Take your snacking up a notch with our new L&B Seasoned Pretzels. We combine crispy, crunchy pretzel nuggets with a buttery, seasoned coating that is utterly addictive. Whether you like it savory, spicy or more traditional, we have a flavor to fit your tastes. Our signature flavors include traditional, movie butter, dill ranch, taco, sweet and smoky, firecracker and malt vinegar.

Tip: Serve our seasoned pretzels alongside sandwiches and wraps, as a crunchy topping on soup and chili, or paired with a cold beverage.

CHOCOLOVE RUBY CACAO BAR In the world of chocolate, ruby is the newest, most extraordinary discovery in 80 years. Chocolove’s new ruby cacao bar is expertly crafted from the ruby cacao bean, which results in a beautiful, natural pink color.

Did you know? The Chocolove ruby cacao bar has an intense fruity flavor with fresh, sour notes.

FREAK FLAG FOODS ORGANIC MASTER SAUCES Twin Cities-based founder Fred Haberman collaborated with veteran local chef Mary Jane Miller to create this line of organic master sauces with curiously complex flavor combinations. The master cooking sauce strategy provides multiple uses for individual tastes and kitchen selfexpression, whether that’s as a new favorite condiment, the perfect appetizer accompaniment or an exciting core element of a recipe.

Tip: Pair the zesty green herb sauce with lamb, add the kick’n curry mole to coconut milk for a quick curry, stir the super kale pesto into hummus, and try the smoky red mustard with fries or pretzels.

14 real food spring 2019

Lunds & Byerlys what’s in store

SARTORI PARMESAN BAGS Sartori begins with wheels of their Classic Parmesan cheese, which they shave into thick ribbons, carve into perfect shreds and delicately grate into fluffy mounds. No matter how you slice it, the sweet, mellow, nutty flavored cheese is perfect sprinkled on your favorite dish.

Did you know? Parmesan is an incredibly versatile cheese that can accompany a wide variety of dishes. If you’re looking for the perfect beverage pairing, try Chianti, Madeira and Beaujolais wines. If you’re interested in beer, go with nut brown ales, porters and lagers.

SUCKERPUNCH GOURMET BLOODY MARY MIXES AND PICKLES SuckerPunch believes eating and drinking should be packed with flavor, which is why their Bloody Mary mixes and pickles are crafted using only the finest ingredients and unique combinations of bold spices and flavors.

Did you know? SuckerPunch’s Bloody Mary Mix is much more than a mixer. Drink it as a vegetable juice, use it as a marinade for your favorite meat, or blend it into sauces for delicious flavor.

L&B COLD PRESS COFFEES Our locally made cold press coffee is carefully crafted from the finest premium coffee beans and water. That’s it! Each can is free of additives and preservatives, which ensures you get the best-tasting, pure coffee. Try all three flavors: original, salted caramel and mocha.

Tip: For a fun twist, combine the salted caramel and mocha flavors for a heavenly, highly caffeinated treat. Yum! real food 15

Home on the range


Heat things up with the 36-inch Cuisine Range from American Range. With up to 6 burners, or 4 burners with a griddle, this freestanding gas range with a convection oven and infrared gas broiler is sure to spice up your kitchen routine. Warners’ Stellian offers free delivery and appliance haul-away on orders $499 or more, plus professional installation from specialists you can trust.





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Green with Envy With avocados’ rich nutrients and versatility, there’s no sign their popularity will wane BY LIANNA MATT



ince the early 2000s, avocado consumption per capita has tripled, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. After all, you can do so much with them, whether it’s grilling, stuffing, battering, frying, or adding them atop other dishes. The avocado fever might seem sudden, but trust us—it’s been a long time coming. Even though Americans were aware of avocados by the 1700s, they didn’t gain popularity until the 20th century. Marketing, the creation of the production-friendly Hass avocado, and loosened import regulations helped pave the way, but the scientific research that made it a “super food” catapulted the fruit into the spotlight. The FDA serving size for an avocado is 50 grams, or about a quarter of an avocado. In that portion, you have 1 gram of protein, 3.4 grams of fiber, 242 milligrams of potassium (which all neural pathways use), more than a dozen vitamins and antioxidants, and plenty of monounsaturated fat. This “good fat” helps you absorb nutrients that might otherwise pass through your system. With their high moisture content, creamy texture and subtle flavor, avocados can act as substitutes for butter, shortening, mayonnaise, eggs, cream cheese, canola or olive oil, and even as the base for smoothies or ice creams. When you use avocados as a substitute for items such as butter or shortening, mash them and substitute on a one-to-one ratio; oven temperatures reduce by 25 percent, and the baking time increases. For quick bread or muffin recipes especially, avocados make the baked goods softer and less crumbly. (Keep in mind avocados can also cause the dough to rise and brown quickly.) If you want to substitute avocados for eggs, substitute 2 tablespoons to ¼ cup of mashed avocado per egg. Whether you use avocados on their own or blended into a dessert like these lemon sparkler cookies (see recipe right), you might just find it to be the perfect, filling addition you needed in your life.


California Avocado replaces half of the butter in these festive cookies that have a citrus “spark.” 1. Combine 2 cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon baking soda and ½ teaspoon salt in a bowl; set aside. 2. Place 6 tablespoons butter and 1/3 cup mashed ripe, fresh California Avocado into the bowl of a stand mixer and beat until smooth. Add 1 cup sugar and the zest only of 2 lemons and beat until light and fluffy. Add 1 egg, mixing well, then add 1 teaspoon lemon extract and ¼ cup lemon juice. Add the flour mixture and mix until just combined, scraping the sides of the bowl. Refrigerate the dough for 1 hour. 3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Using a tablespoon to measure, scoop the dough (it will be sticky) into balls. Roll each ball into sanding sugars, covering the entire ball. Place the sugar-coated dough balls on the prepared baking sheets spacing 2 inches apart. Slightly flatten each ball. 4. Bake the cookies for about 8 to 10 minutes until the edges are set but middles are still soft to the touch. Let cool on baking sheet for 2 to 3 minutes before transferring to cooling racks to cool completely. 

TIPS FOR WORKING WITH AVOCADOS • Test for ripeness by gently pressing the peel; it should give slightly without being squishy. With most avocados, including Hass, the darker the skins, the better. • Only refrigerate avocados if you want to slow down ripening. If you want them to ripen faster, place them in a paper bag with an apple or a banana. • Once cut, to delay browning, squirt lemon juice on it and put it in a sealed container or cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.

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healthy habits

Finding A Better Balance

Expert advice on managing diabetes and creating healthy lifestyles BY ANNA BJORLIN sizes to allow people the freedom to eat the foods they enjoy.” A general recommendation for a diabetic-friendly diet is to strive for three to four servings of carb-rich foods per meal. “A serving can equal an 8-ounce glass of milk, a 1-ounce slice of bread, 1/3 cup of noodles or rice, or a small piece of fruit,” says Zeratsky. “Each serving has about 15 grams of carbs, and you want each meal to have around 45-60 grams total. So if you want to have more noodles, skip that piece of bread.” Whether you have diabetes yourself, share meals with someone who does, or are simply interested in practicing good habits to prevent the onset of type 2 diabetes, there are several steps you can take to optimize your diet and lifestyle. 1. PRACTICE THE PLATE METHOD: According to Zeratsky, your plate should be half fruits and vegetables and include some protein and a measured portion of something starchy. “For example, if you go to a picnic and there’s hamburgers, corn on the cob and potato salad, the balance of that meal is heavier on starchier food, so you have to figure out how to balance it,” explains Zeratsky. “Maybe you choose to have a smaller portion of potato salad, and then supplement your meal with a lettuce salad or some carrot sticks to fill you up. Or forgo the bun and have an open-face burger so you don’t send your blood sugar too high. It’s all about flexibility and striving to find what fits both your diet and personal preferences.” 2. CREATE HEALTHY PAIRINGS: Try pairing healthy carbs (fruits, veggies, whole grains) with other diabetic-friendly foods such as a leaner type of protein (meat, fish, eggs) for a double dose of nutrients. “Those kinds of duos help manage your blood glucose levels so you feel better, and more full as well, because they take longer to break down,” says Zeratsky. “Another option might be plant-based like soy, beans or lentils—those choices especially have both healthy carbs and leaner proteins, so they’re great.”

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ccording to the American Diabetes Association, more than 30 million Americans have diabetes, and most have type 2 diabetes, a condition developed over time that affects the way the body processes glucose (or blood sugar). “When someone is first diagnosed, the most common question I hear is ‘Do I have to be on a special diet?’ and the answer, really, is no,” says Katherine Zeratsky, a registered dietitian nutritionist at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. “It’s not about unique foods and diets, but rather healthy portion control and a good balance of food groups.” In fact, one of the biggest misconceptions about diabetes is the belief that diabetics are required to cut out certain foods in order to achieve a specifically low-carb diet. “Foods that have carbs are nutritious and certainly okay for people with diabetes to eat,” explains Zeratsky. “It’s the same for any food, whether a carb, protein or fat: We’re looking for a better overall balance. Too much of anything isn’t healthy, so it’s just a matter of finding the right combination of food groups and portion

3. MAKE AN EFFORT TO MOVE: Diet may be key when it comes to managing diabetes, but it’s not the only aspect. “Moving is the natural way to bring down blood sugar, which is essentially energy. So if you’re moving, you’re using it,” says Zeratsky. “Not everyone loves exercise, but just going for a walk after a meal, cleaning your house or turning on the music and dancing can really aid in the process.” 4. FIND A SUPPORT SYSTEM: Changing your lifestyle is never easy, so find someone to help you through the process. “Creating new habits like sticking to a healthier diet and getting more exercise isn’t an easy thing to do when we’re all so busy and rushed, and there are so many tempting foods out there,” says Zeratsky. “But having someone to support you, to share a healthy meal, encourage you to go for a walk or just help reinforce your efforts to choose more wholesome foods, can make all the difference in the world.”

MAKE SMART FOOD SWAPS With some key food substitutions, you might not find yourself missing your go-to meals as much as you think—after all, you’re still eating them. They’re just a little different now. • Trade in your sweetened breakfast cereal for mixedgrain cereals like unsweetened bran flakes and include a bit of fruit or milk to add some healthy carbs and protein. • Swap out sweetened yogurt with plain yogurt, and then sweeten it yourself with some fruit. And if possible, opt for Greek yogurt, which has more protein and also tends to be more flavorful. • Instead of white potatoes, pick sweet potatoes, which are higher in fiber and protein and are also a great source of iron and vitamins A and C. • Try using quinoa in place of white rice because its fiber and protein can help keep your blood sugar under control. Plus, the super grain is packed with all nine essential amino acids, a rarity categorizing it as a complete protein food. • Choose whole grains (think wheat, rye and oats) over refined grains (such as white flour and cornmeal). Whole grains have healthier carbs, which are found less often in processed foods that contain additional added sugars. Always consult your doctor if you have health concerns or before making any major dietary changes.


These fruity little bites are the perfect treat to satisfy any sweet tooth. The light and flaky phyllo shells have fewer carbs than most other crusts, while the Greek yogurt is a great substitute for whipped cream. 2/3 cup frozen raspberries 1 tablespoon strawberry fruit spread 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract 5 frozen mini phyllo pastry shells, thawed 2 tablespoons 2% plain Greek yogurt 1. Combine the raspberries and fruit spread in a small saucepan, place over medium-high heat, and cook 3 minutes or until the mixture has reduced to a scant 1/4 cup. 2. Remove from heat, and stir in extract. Allow to cool, about 5 minutes. 3. Spoon equal amounts in each of the phyllo shells and spoon about 1 teaspoon of yogurt over each shell. NUTRITION


5. GET THE RIGHT ATTITUDE: If you’re diagnosed with diabetes, don’t be discouraged. “People who develop type 2 diabetes tend to think to themselves, ‘That’s it; I have this disease and it’s never going away,’” says Zeratsky. “But they don’t realize there are always things you can do to improve your health. Hopefully in the end it just makes you feel even better than before and live the life you want to live.” 


spring 2019 real food 19


20 real food spring 2019


the Italian Way Dress pasta with clean and simple fresh ingredients for true Italian flair BY ERICA DE MANE


talians celebrate the rebirth of the land in spring by harvesting tiny dandelion leaves, shell peas, fava beans, artichokes, young garlic, asparagus and

lots of early herbs such as chives, mint, oregano, little basil leaves and parsley. When fashioning a pasta dish with spring produce, I use the Italian approach and keep it clean. My aim is to blend one or two ingredients, say, artichokes and prosciutto, with maybe one herb, like basil or mint, and work the flavors gently, letting each ingredient shine. When you’re highlighting a seasonal vegetable, you want to use it to create what Italians call a condimento, or a condiment for the pasta. That is where the vegetable and its cooking juices become one with the pasta. I often do this by giving the pasta and the sauce a final toss in the pan, adding a little more olive oil or butter and a splash of pasta cooking water to create a creamy emulsion. Scattering fresh herbs on at the last minute can really wake things up. Using the recipes and tips here, and also improvising with vegetable, sauce and pasta pairings, you can create spring pasta dishes with true Italian flair.


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Penne with Ricotta, Young Zucchini, Lemon Zest and Mint MAKES 4 SERVINGS

Pasta topped with a dollop of ricotta is one of my all-time favorites. Here I make a quick sauce for it with tiny first-of-the-season zucchini, garlic, wine and mint. The ricotta gets mixed in at the table. For the Ricotta 1½ cups whole milk ricotta, sheep’s milk if available zest from 2 lemons 1 teaspoon sugar 3 big scrapings of nutmeg pinch of salt 10 spearmint leaves, chopped For the Pasta salt, for cooking water plus to taste about 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided 1 spring onion, diced, using all of the tender green stem 10 tiny, thin spring zucchini (or about 4 bigger ones), cut into rounds 2 fresh spring garlic cloves, sliced black pepper, to taste 3 big scrapings of fresh nutmeg or ¼ teaspoon dried 1 pound penne ¼ cup white wine squeeze of lemon juice handful of spearmint leaves, lightly chopped about 8 ounces pecorino Toscano or Sardo cheese, for topping 1. Mix all the ricotta ingredients together in a small bowl, adding a little warm water to loosen and smooth them out. 2. Set up a pot of pasta cooking water and bring it to a boil, adding a generous amount of salt. 3. While the water is coming to a boil, get out a large skillet, one big enough to hold all the zucchini and the pasta. Set it over medium heat and drizzle in about 2 tablespoons of olive oil. When hot, add the onion and the zucchini. Sauté until the zucchini just starts to brown at the edges, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic, and season with black pepper, salt and the nutmeg. Continue cooking until the zucchini is lightly browned and tender but still holding its shape, 1 minute or so longer. Add the wine to the skillet and let it boil away, about 1 minute. 4. Drop the penne into the boiling water. When it’s al dente, about 10 to 12 minutes, drain it, saving about ½ cup of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the zucchini and toss briefly over low heat, adding the lemon juice, the remaining tablespoon of olive oil, and a little of the cooking water to loosen the sauce. Pour it into a large serving bowl and scatter on the mint and a few gratings of pecorino. Toss again gently. 5. Serve in bowls with a big spoonful of the ricotta on top and a little more grated pecorino, if you desire. Variation: Another classic Southern Italian dish is pasta tossed only with ricotta. To make this, just toss your hot rigatoni (or any tube pasta) with the ricotta mixture, thinning it with a little pasta cooking water. Top with grated pecorino or Parmigiano.

What is “generously salted” water? For 1 pound of pasta I generally use about

3½ quarts of water and about 2 teaspoons of salt. For pasta to be properly seasoned, the water should taste a little salty. Plus, you need enough water so the pasta floats around freely, cooking evenly and quickly. You can certainly use a little less water and less salt, but this is what I do, and it’s in keeping with the traditional Italian way.

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Pasta e Piselli with Little Meatballs MAKES 4 SERVINGS AS A MAIN COURSE SOUP

Pasta with peas is a classic spring dish in Naples and elsewhere in Southern Italy. It’s made both as a straight pasta dish and as a soup. When I was a kid, I was always served it soupy. My Puglian grandmother often added baby meatballs, making it a full meal. I loved that, so I’m sharing that approach here. For the Meatballs 1 pound ground chicken 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 1 large egg ⅓ cup dry breadcrumbs, preferably homemade ½ cup grated Grana Padano 1 large spring garlic clove, minced ½ teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg black pepper, to taste salt, to taste 6 large sprigs of thyme, the leaves chopped 10 basil leaves, well chopped For the Soup ¾ pound ditalini, or another small pasta such as orzo or elbow salt 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 8 cups homemade chicken broth, or very high quality store-bought broth 1 bay leaf, preferably fresh 2 cups freshly shucked spring peas or frozen peas (not baby ones), defrosted zest from 1 lemon 4 or 5 gratings of freshly ground black pepper ¾ cup grated grana Padano cheese 12 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade, for garnish


1. Place all the ingredients for the meatballs together in a mixing bowl. Mix gently and quickly with your hands, just until everything is blended. You don’t want it getting too compact; that’ll make your meatballs tough. Form the mixture into ½-inch balls (the smaller the better for soup) and lay them out on a flat plate. Refrigerate for about 1 hour to firm them up. 2. Set up a pot of pasta cooking water and bring it to a boil. Add a generous amount of salt. Drop in the ditalini and cook al dente, about 8 minutes. Drain well, and place in a bowl. Toss with a drizzle of olive oil to prevent it from sticking together. 3. Pour the chicken broth into a large soup pot and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the bay leaf and boil down for about 5 minutes, just to concentrate the flavor. Turn the heat down a little and add the peas and meatballs. Let simmer just until the peas are tender and the meatballs are cooked through, about 4 minutes. 4. Add the ditalini to the broth, along with the lemon zest. Season with black pepper. Simmer 1 minute longer to further blend the flavors. Check for seasoning. Serve in large soup bowls topped with a big sprinkling of Grana Padano. Garnish with the basil. If you prefer to serve the soup later, you can gently reheat it. Variation: If you happen to have fresh pea shoots, you can garnish each bowl with a few of those instead of the basil.

spring 2019 real food 23


I use baby arugula when I don’t have my own wild Mediterranean arugula, which is more pungent. I suggest it as a good substitution in this recipe. I like treating young arugula as a spring herb, adding it at the last minute to preserve its freshness. For the Breadcrumbs 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 1 cup dry breadcrumbs, preferably homemade, not too finely ground big pinch of Aleppo pepper or a little ground cayenne 1 teaspoon sugar salt, to taste 1½ pounds large shrimp (wild caught, if possible), peeled and deveined, saving the shells 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided ½ cup dry white wine salt, to taste 2 large spring garlic cloves, thinly sliced zest from 1 large lemon ¼ teaspoon ground allspice black pepper 1 pound spaghetti 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 2 bunches wild or baby arugula, well stemmed (about 2 cups) 1. To make the breadcrumbs, heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. Add the breadcrumbs, the Aleppo or cayenne, and the sugar, and season with salt. Heat, stirring occasionally, until the breadcrumbs are lightly golden and crisp, about 2 minutes. Put them in a small bowl and set aside. 2. To make a light shrimp broth, place the shrimp shells in a medium saucepan. Drizzle them with about 1 tablespoon of olive oil and turn the heat to medium. Let the shells sauté until they turn pink, about 2 minutes. Add the wine and let it bubble for about 1 minute. Add 1 cup of warm water and a big pinch of salt. Bring everything to a boil, and then turn the heat down a notch and let everything simmer at a low bubble, uncovered, for 10 minutes. Strain the broth and set it aside. You should have about ¾ cup. 3. Set up a large pot of pasta cooking water. Add a generous amount of salt and bring it to a boil. Add the spaghetti. 4. Set a large skillet over high heat. When it’s hot, add about 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the shrimp, spreading it out in one layer. Add the garlic. Sprinkle on the allspice and the lemon zest, and season with salt and black pepper to taste. Sear the shrimp on one side without moving it around too much, until you see that it’s turning pink at the edges, about 2 minutes. Turn it over with tongs and briefly cook the other sides, about 1 minute longer. Pour on the shrimp broth, and let it bubble for a few seconds. Turn off the heat. Add the butter, letting it melt in. 5. When the spaghetti is al dente, about 8 to 10 minutes, drain it, and pour it into a large serving bowl. Pour on the shrimp sauce. Add the arugula and the remaining 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Toss well. The heat from the pasta will gently wilt the arugula. Taste for seasoning, adding more salt or black pepper if needed. Sprinkle the top with about 1 tablespoon of the breadcrumbs, bringing the rest to the table. Serve immediately. Variation: You can use another tender spring green such as young dandelion or baby spinach instead of the arugula.

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Pasta Improv When I make an improvisational pasta, herbs and oil often become the entire sauce. For a pasta alle erbe, try tossing hot penne or spaghetti with a tiny bit of fresh spring garlic, good olive oil, black pepper and a mix of freshly chopped basil, mint, chives, tarragon, marjoram, parsley—or whatever fresh herbs you have on hand or can find at the market. For instance, one of the first dishes I like to make in spring is a simple spaghetti tossed with baby arugula, pecorino and good olive oil. Whatever combination you choose, you don’t need a written recipe for these dishes; it’s spring cooking at its simplest and most fragrant. Here are some ideas that embrace traditional pairings and offer visual and tasty delights for you to improvise with your own favorite produce and pasta. Peas: Ditalini and tubetti, small tubular shapes, are classic with peas, but if you add cream or cheese, spaghetti or tagliatelle will allow the peas to cling readily to the long strands. Asparagus: Cut it on a bias and toss it with penne or another medium-length macaroni for a perfect pairing. If you purée the sauce, pappardelle is a good choice. Spinach and Other Soft Spring Greens: Wilted greens should wrap around pasta. I would pair these ingredients with a medium pasta such as cavatelli or cavatappi (corkscrews). If your sauce is more rustic, maybe containing pancetta, try orecchiette or conchigliette (small shells), so the little chunks can get caught in their hollows. continued on page 26


Spaghetti with Wild Arugula, Shrimp and Sweet Breadcrumbs


spring 2019 real food 25

Pappardelle with Artichokes, Prosciutto and Basil MAKES 4 SERVINGS

Using baby artichokes, which have no chokes to worry about, makes this elegant dish quick to come together. For a vegetarian version, just leave out the prosciutto and replace the chicken broth with vegetable broth or a little water. For the Artichokes juice and grated zest from 1 lemon 2 dozen baby artichokes (a few more if they’re really small) 2½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil 1 spring onion, finely diced 1 large spring garlic clove, thinly sliced ½ cup dry vermouth ¾ cup chicken broth, homemade or good quality store bought salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste For the Pasta salt, for pasta cooking water 1 pound pappardelle 2 tablespoons unsalted butter 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 3 very thin slices prosciutto di Parma or San Danielle, cut into thin strips 8 ounces Parmigiano Reggiano 15 basil leaves, cut into chiffonade freshly ground black pepper, to taste ⅓ cup lightly toasted pine nuts (optional; See Cook’s Note) 1. Set up a big bowl of cold water and add the lemon juice (set aside zest). Remove the tough outer leaves of the artichokes and trim the tops of what remains. Quarter the artichokes lengthwise and drop them into the lemon water. This will help prevent them from darkening. 2. Choose a sauté pan big enough to hold all the artichokes and heat over medium heat. Add 2½ tablespoons olive oil. Scoop the artichokes from the lemon water, shake off any excess liquid, and put them in the pan. Sauté to coat them in the oil, about 1 minute. Add the onion and sauté 1 minute longer. Add the garlic and cook it just until it gives off its aroma. Add the vermouth and let it bubble for about 30 seconds. Add the chicken broth, partially cover the pan, and simmer the artichokes until they’re just tender when poked with a knife, about 7 or 8 minutes. Season with salt, black pepper and the lemon zest. 3. Set up a pot of pasta cooking water and add a generous amount of salt. Drop in the pappardelle. When the pasta is tender, about 3 to 4 minutes for fresh pasta, drain it, saving a little of the pasta cooking water, and tip it into a big serving bowl. Add the butter and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Toss gently. Add the artichokes and all their cooking juices, the prosciutto, about 1 tablespoon of grated Parmigiano, the basil and a few more grindings of black pepper. Toss, adding a bit of the pasta water to loosen the sauce if needed. Check for seasoning. Scatter the pine nuts on top, if you’re using them. Serve hot, bringing the rest of the Parmigiano to the table. Cook’s Note: To toast pine nuts, preheat the oven to 400°F. Spread nuts on a sheet pan and place in the oven. Roast until they’re just turning golden, about 6 minutes. Keep an eye on them—nuts can go from toasted to burned very quickly. Variation: You can make this with asparagus instead of artichokes. Just blanch the spears, cut them at an angle, and add them to the pan when you would have added the artichokes. The cooking time will shorten to only several minutes, and you won’t need the chicken broth. 26 real food spring 2019

Pasta Improv, continued from page 24

Artichokes: Since they usually get cut into long, thin pieces, try preparing them with a medium long pasta such as penne, casarecce or gemelli. If your sauce has some body to it, containing cream or a wineand-olive-oil emulsion for instance, pappardelle or tagliatelle will work well. Herbs: A sauce of abundant spring herbs, chopped and mixed with olive oil, looks and tastes great tossed with a long pasta such as spaghetti or tagliatelle. Pesto: Classic Genoese pesto is served with trofie, a regional twisted pasta, but other medium-size twisty shapes such as gemelli and fusilli are great with any kind of pesto. You want a shape that will allow the pesto to melt into its curves. In the spring, I like using mint and parsley in my pesto in place of basil. Creamy Sauces: Sauces made with cream or from puréed vegetables are perfect with long straight pastas such as pappardelle, but I also like them with long twisted or ruffly shapes like fusilli lunghi or lasagnette. Ragu: Chunky ragus are wonderful with sturdy rigatoni or ziti. I also love a chunky meat sauce with a shell pasta such as conchiglie or lumache, where the little pieces get caught in the hollows. A more refined ragu, such as a Bolognese, is classically matched with tagliatelle. In Sicily, spring lamb or pork ragus are often tossed with small pasta shapes such as anelletti or penne corte. Many such pasta and sauce pairings are the products of regional tradition.


spring 2019 real food 27


28 real food spring 2019

Anelletti al Forno MAKES 4 SERVINGS

This baked pasta is a Sicilian classic often served on holidays, especially Easter, since it always contains spring peas. Anelletti means little rings. It’s an elegant, traditional Sicilian pasta shape. If you can’t find it, ditalini, penne corta, cappelletti or even elbow maccheroni will all do fine. 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided 4 ounces pancetta, well chopped (about 3/4 cup) 1 pound ground pork ½ pound ground veal or beef 1 large yellow onion, cut into small dice 1 large spring garlic clove, thinly sliced salt, to taste freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg pinch cayenne 1 bay leaf, fresh if possible ½ cup red wine

½ cup chicken broth 1 (35-ounce) can plum tomatoes, well chopped, including the juice 2 cups freshly shucked spring peas or frozen defrosted peas (not baby peas) 10 fresh marjoram or oregano sprigs, the leaves chopped 1 cup grated caciocavallo cheese, or a mix of mozzarella and provolone, divided 1 pound anelletti pasta ½ cup breadcrumbs, not too finely ground, preferably homemade 1 teaspoon sugar

1. Set a large stew pot with a lid over medium heat. Add 1 tablespoon olive oil and the pancetta. Let the pancetta crisp up, about 4 minutes. Add the pork and beef and sauté until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the onion and garlic. Season with salt and black pepper, to taste, and add the cinnamon, nutmeg and cayenne. Sauté about another minute to blend all the flavors. Add the bay leaf and the red wine and let the wine bubble for about 1 minute. Add the chicken broth and tomatoes and bring to a boil. 2. Turn the heat to low and cover the pan. Let simmer until the meat is tender and the sauce has thickened, about 1½ hours. In the final 10 minutes of cooking, add the peas and marjoram or oregano. Let the sauce cool for a few minutes, then add ¾ cup of the caciocavallo, mixing it in. 3. Preheat the oven to 425°F. 4. Put up a pot of pasta cooking water. Add a generous amount of salt and bring it to a boil. Add the anelletti and cook it to al dente, about 7 to 9 minutes, maybe a little firmer than usual, since it’s going to be baked. Drain the anelletti and add it to the sauce, giving it a good stir. 5. Coat the inside of a large baking dish with olive oil—round is traditional, but a 12x10-inch rectangular or an 11-inch oval is fine—and pour in the pasta. 6. Mix the remaining caciocavallo with the breadcrumbs, seasoning it with a little salt, black pepper and the sugar. Sprinkle this over the top of the pasta. Drizzle it with the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil. 7. Bake, uncovered, in the preheated oven until it is bubbling at the edges and the top is browned, about 20 minutes. Let the pasta rest for about 10 minutes before serving.


Variation: You can mix up the meat here. Use all-beef if you like, or a mix of beef and veal. Ground lamb also makes a great springtime ragu. 

PENNE W. RICOTTA, YOUNG ZUCCHINI, LEMON ZEST & MINT: PER SERVING: CALORIES 1002 (358 from fat); FAT 41g (sat. 20g); CHOL 106mg; SODIUM 1355mg; CARB 109g; FIBER 8g; PROTEIN 49g

PASTA E PISELLI W. LITTLE MEATBALLS: PER SERVING: CALORIES 876 (262 from fat); FAT 30g (sat. 11g); CHOL 135mg; SODIUM 1181mg; CARB 98g; FIBER 9g; PROTEIN 57g

SPAGHETTI W. ARUGULA, SHRIMP & BREADCRUMBS: PER SERVING: CALORIES 872 (181 from fat); FAT 21g (sat. 6g); CHOL 210mg; SODIUM 737mg; CARB 121g; FIBER 7g; PROTEIN 47g

PAPPARDELLE W. ARTICHOKES, PROSCIUTTO & BASIL: PER SERVING: CALORIES 994 (321 from fat); FAT 37g (sat. 16g); CHOL 58mg; SODIUM 1421mg; CARB 120g; FIBER 15g; PROTEIN 46g

ANELLETTI AL FORNO: PER SERVING: CALORIES 1349 (533 from fat); FAT 60g (sat. 22g); CHOL 171mg; SODIUM 1457mg; CARB 133g; FIBER 16g; PROTEIN 69g

spring 2019 real food 29

Spring Spears Celebrate the season with gloriously green asparagus prepared five ways BY ROBIN ASBELL PHOTOGRAPHY TERRY BRENNAN FOOD STYLING LARA MIKLASEVICS

30 real food spring 2019


f there is one vegetable that sings of spring, it’s asparagus. Once the conditions are right, asparagus spears pop up from the ground almost overnight, full of energy and life. We are lucky that asparagus from warmer climes is avail-

able most of the year, but spring is when domestic asparagus is in season and its journey to us is shorter and sweeter. Asparagus is effortlessly beautiful, and its long and slender shape lends itself to many classic presentations. It’s also incredibly easy to work with, requiring very little time to prepare or cook. It can take on a French accent if you peel the stems, poach it and serve it with hollandaise. But it can also top a pizza or join in your favorite pasta dish. In recent years, roasting and grilling have become go-to methods for cooking asparagus. Both give the vegetable a hint of char and caramelization and keep the spears firm. Celebrate spring and dig into a few fun asparagus dishes.

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32 real food spring 2019

Blanched Asparagus and Three Dipping Sauces MAKES 6 SERVINGS

Choices, choices. Here you have three appealing sauces to choose from or you can make them all. The hollandaise is a classic made from egg yolks and warm butter—it’s just made easier with the help of a blender. The herby, garlicky chimichurri has a little spice and a tangy vinegar kick. Enjoy a creamy puree of roasted peppers and nuts in the romesco, a Spanish sauce that makes everything it touches better. Make your sauces before blanching the asparagus since that only takes a few minutes. Hollandaise is best eaten the same day, while the other two can be refrigerated, covered, for up to 3 days. If preferred, you can simply pile the asparagus on platters and drizzle with sauces. 2 pounds asparagus 1. To blanch asparagus, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Set up two large bowls of ice water. Trim the tough bottoms from the asparagus, and if desired, peel the stems starting 1 inch below the tips. Drop the asparagus into boiling water for 1 minute, then take out with tongs and drop in the ice water to stop the cooking. When completely cold, transfer to a colander, then pat dry before serving. Cook’s Note: Each dip is enough for one 2-pound bunch of asparagus. If you want to serve multiple dips, adjust amount of asparagus accordingly.

Hollandaise MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP

6 large pasteurized egg yolks, room temperature 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1 tablespoon fresh dill

1/4 teaspoon salt 2 dashes hot sauce 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, melted

1. Place egg yolks, lemon juice, dill, salt and hot sauce into the blender and secure the lid. Turn the machine on at low speed, and then increase to high. Blend for about 30 seconds. Remove the plug from the lid of the blender and slowly drizzle the melted butter through the opening. The sauce should thicken and look like mayonnaise. Blend for a few more seconds. Scrape the warm sauce into a medium bowl or individual bowls for dipping.

Chimichurri MAKES ABOUT 3/4 CUP

1 medium shallot, minced 4 cloves garlic, chopped 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 1/2 cup cilantro, finely chopped

1/2 cup parsley, finely chopped 2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped 1/4 cup red wine vinegar 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1. Mix the shallot, garlic, salt, red pepper flakes, cilantro, parsley and oregano in a medium bowl. Stir in the red wine vinegar and olive oil and let stand for about 15 minutes. Stir well before serving. Cook’s Note: If desired, you can also make this in a food processor. Place the shallot, chopped garlic, salt, red pepper flakes, cilantro, parsley and oregano in a food processor bowl and pulse until minced. Then add the oil and vinegar and pulse to mix—but don’t puree.


1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 1 cup cubed Italian bread (about 1 slice) 1/2 cup slivered almonds 3 medium roasted red peppers 1 clove garlic, chopped

2 teaspoons paprika 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup sherry vinegar

1. Pour the olive oil in a medium skillet and place it over medium heat. When hot, add the bread cubes and turn every few minutes as the bread turns golden, about 2 minutes. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the bread cubes to a blender container. 2. Add the almonds to the hot oil and stir until they turn golden brown, about 2 minutes. Transfer the almonds to the blender container and let the oil cool in the pan before pouring into the blender container. Add the roasted peppers, garlic, paprika, red pepper flakes, salt and sherry vinegar, secure the lid, and hold it closed with a folded kitchen towel as you blend until smooth.

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34 real food spring 2019

Creamy Asparagus Soup with Tarragon

Asparagus and Ham Quiche


This classic quiche can fit into any meal of your day from breakfast or brunch right through dinner. You have the option to make the pastry from scratch or use purchased refrigerated pie crust or frozen deep dish crust to save time.

This soup may be the dish that convinces even a skeptic to love asparagus. The creamy, smooth soup is pale green and has a hint of tanginess from the sour cream. The tender tips float on top, showing off their delicate buds. Thick and flavorful, all this soup needs is a chunk of crusty bread to make a fabulous meal.

2 pounds asparagus 2 tablespoons butter 1 large onion 2 tablespoons white rice 3 cups vegetable stock 1/2 teaspoon salt 2 cups packed baby spinach, chopped 2 cups sour cream 2 tablespoons fresh tarragon, plus more for garnish freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1. Set up a steamer for the asparagus tips. Trim the hard bottoms from the asparagus. Cut the tips from the asparagus and reserve. Chop the stems in ½-inch pieces and reserve separately. 2. In a soup pot, melt the butter over medium heat and sauté the onion until tender and clear. Add chopped asparagus stems (not tips), rice, stock and salt. Simmer for 15 minutes, until rice is very soft. Stir in the spinach and cover for 1 minute, just to wilt. 3. Steam the asparagus tips over simmering water for about 2 minutes. Reserve. 4. Transfer the hot soup to a blender or food processor and secure the lid. Place a folded towel over the top of the container and be careful of the hot liquids as you puree. When the mixture is smooth, add the sour cream and process to mix. Return to pan and add tarragon and pepper, and taste for seasoning. 5. Serve each bowl with asparagus tips and fresh tarragon sprigs on top.


For the Crust 1 cup unbleached flour 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cold 1 teaspoon vinegar 4 tablespoons ice water, approximately flour, for counter 1/2 bunch asparagus (about 8 average spears), trimmed 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1 small yellow onion, chopped 6 ounces cooked ham, chopped 6 large eggs, whisked 1/2 cup heavy cream 1 cup shredded Jarlsberg or other Swiss cheese (about 3 ounces), divided 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/2 teaspoon dried dill freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1. To Make the Crust: In a large bowl, whisk the flour and salt. Using the large holes on a grater, grate the butter into the mix, tossing every few strokes to coat the bits of butter with flour. In a measuring cup, whisk the vinegar and ice water. Stir gently into the flour mixture and use your hands to mix and form a ball. If needed, add a little bit more water. Form into a disk and roll out on a counter sprinkled with a little flour. Put in pie pan and flute the edges. Cover with foil and chill until ready to use. If using a prepared refrigerated crust, fit into pie pan and flute the edges, and chill until the filling is ready to go in. 2. Trim the tough bases from the asparagus and discard, then cut the tips into 3-inch pieces. Chop the remaining stems into thin pieces and reserve. In a large skillet, melt the butter over medium heat, then add the onion. Lower heat and cook slowly. When onions are very soft and getting golden, about 10 minutes, stir in the chopped stems (not tips) and stir until bright green. Remove from heat to cool and stir in the chopped ham. 3. Preheat oven to 400°F. Fill the chilled pie crust with dried beans or pie weights and bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and lower the heat to 375°F. 4. In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, cream, ½ cup of the shredded cheese, salt, dill and pepper. Stir in the cooled onion mixture, then spread in the pie crust. Top with remaining ½ cup cheese, then arrange asparagus tips in a spoke design with the tips in the center. Bake for about 50 minutes. 5. When the top is puffed and golden, cool slightly on a rack and serve warm. Quiche can be refrigerated for up to 4 days, tightly covered. To reheat, place the quiche in a 300°F oven for about 20 minutes, or microwave individual slices for 1 to 2 minutes on high. Cook’s Note: A purchased refrigerated crust may brown more quickly, so check it halfway through the baking time and cover with foil if it is browning too quickly.

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Asparagus Pesto and Brie Pizza MAKES 2 14-INCH PIZZAS, ABOUT 8 SERVINGS

For the Crust 2 cups unbleached flour 2 cups white whole-wheat flour, or regular whole-wheat flour 2 teaspoons quick yeast 1 teaspoon salt 11/2 cups hot water 2 teaspoons sugar or honey 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil For the Pesto and Topping 1 bunch asparagus (about 16 average spears), divided 2 cloves garlic, peeled 1 cup fresh basil leaf 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese 1/2 cup pine nuts 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil 8 ounces brie 1 cup grape tomatoes, halved 1. For the Crust: In a stand mixer or large bowl, mix the unbleached and whole-wheat flours, yeast and salt. Warm the water to 110°F to 115°F and add the sugar or honey and oil to the water. Mix the water into the flour mixture, kneading until the dough comes away from the bowl. It should be soft and pliable but not overly sticky. If it is sticking to your fingers, add a little more flour. Knead for a few minutes, then place the dough in an oiled bowl, cover and place near but not on the stove. Let rise for at least 1 hour. 2. While the dough rises, preheat the oven to 450°F. For pre-baked crusts, preheat to 400°F. 3. For the Pesto and Topping: Cut 2-inch long sections off the tips of the asparagus and reserve. Slice the coarse bases from the stems, leaving you with the central sections of the stalks. Set up to steam the stalks. Steam for about 3 minutes, until tender. Transfer the stalks to a food processor bowl and let cool to room temperature. Add the garlic, basil, Parmesan, pine nuts and salt and process to a smooth puree, scraping down as needed. Add the olive oil and process until very smooth. Reserve. 4. Remove the rind from the brie and cut the cheese in small pieces; it will be soft and may not divide neatly. Reserve. 5. To make pizza, lightly oil two 14-inch wide sheet pans, preferably without a rim. Divide the dough in 2 pieces and form each into a disk. Place one disk on the pan and press it out to a circle that reaches the edges of the pan. Dollop the asparagus puree over the crusts and gently smooth out to cover the pizza. Top with brie, then arrange the halved tomatoes and asparagus tips over the cheese, pressing down lightly. Bake the pizzas for 15 to 20 minutes, reversing the pans at the halfway point for even baking. Slide the pizza onto a cutting board and cut in 8 slices per pizza. Serve hot. Cook’s Note: If you prefer, you can use two 14-inch prebaked pizza crusts to save time. Top and bake for 12 to 15 minutes.

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ASPARAGUS TIPS Spear Size: You will see fat spears about the size of a Sharpie marker and you’ll come across spears as thin as a pencil. Despite some old myths, neither thin nor thick is superior in flavor. Generally, as expected, the thinner ones need a little less cooking time. If you are looking for asparagus to serve as finger food with a sauce, look for fatter spears. If you like, you can peel the fat spears, starting an inch from the pointed tip and going down to the tough bottom. It’s optional but it looks nice and allows you to serve a bit more of the stems. Asparagus Has Zones: The tips should always be treated differently than the stems. Trim off the bottom couple of inches, which are tough, and then lop off the tips in the desired lengths. The stems are full of flavor and just take a minute longer to cook than the tender tips. In most cases, you’ll save the tips to add at the end of a recipe to show them off. Don’t Overcook: Unless you plan to puree it, don’t overcook asparagus. Mushy and limp are not the words you want to come to mind when you serve a simple side of asparagus with butter, so roast, steam or blanch it just enough to get to crisp-tender.


Asparagus is a perfect vegetable for topping a pizza because it cooks quickly and looks beautiful. In this preparation, you’ll use those flavorful stems as the base for a creamy, basil-laced puree that serves as the sauce for the pizza. That way you are sure to have asparagus flavor in every bite with a lush melt of brie over it all. You have the option to use prebaked crusts and skip mixing and shaping your own.


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38 real food spring 2019

Seared Scallops in Cream Over Roasted Asparagus MAKES 4 SERVINGS

If you are eating a low-carb diet, this dish will make you happy. Instead of the usual pasta or noodles under creamy sauce, you’ll put down a bed of roasted asparagus. The scallops cook quickly, and the creamy sauce is just decadent enough to make you feel like you are having a special meal. 1 bunch (about 16 average spears) asparagus 1 small red bell pepper, slivered drizzle plus 1 tablespoon olive oil, divided 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 cup white wine 1 tablespoon fresh lemon zest 1 pound sea scallops, trimmed 2 tablespoons unbleached flour 1/2 teaspoon paprika 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1/2 cup minced shallots 1/2 cup cream 2 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped


1. Preheat the oven to 400°F. Trim the tough bases from the asparagus and discard, and place the spears on a sheet pan. Add the pepper slivers, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Toss to coat and roast for 10 to 15 minutes until browned and slightly shriveled. Keep warm until the scallops are ready. 2. In a cup, whisk the wine and zest and reserve. Pat the scallops dry with paper towels. Mix the flour and paprika in a medium bowl and dip the scallops in the flour mixture, then place on a plate. Have another plate ready to hold the seared scallops. 3. Place a large cast iron or stainless steel skillet over medium high heat and let it heat for about 1 minute until it is hot. Add the 1 tablespoon olive oil and half of the butter and swirl to coat the pan. Place the scallops in the pan and sear 2 to 3 minutes undisturbed (depending on size), until the edges look browned and start to crack. Turn over the scallops, reduce the heat to medium and cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, until firm when pressed with a fingertip. Transfer to a plate and cover loosely with a pot lid to keep warm. 4. To the same pan, add the remaining ½ tablespoon butter and shallots and stir, scraping up any browned bits. Reduce the heat to low and cook for 2 to 3 minutes, until the shallots are softened. Add the wine mixture and increase the heat to bring to a boil, stir and cook until the pan is nearly dry. Add the cream and stir, boiling until thickened. Stir in the parsley and remove pan from the heat. Serve the asparagus with the scallops and sauce on top. 

WRAP IT! Wrap asparagus stems in prosciutto for a savory, quick-and-easy bite. Use thicker spears so they will not overcook in the time it takes to crisp the meat. Trim the bases from the asparagus and place each spear on a slice of prosciutto at an angle so that you can roll the spear and have the prosciutto spiral up the length of it. Place on a sheet pan, or for a crispier effect, on a baking rack set on a baking sheet. Roast at 450°F for 5 minutes for crispy prosciutto.

ASPARAGUS W. HOLLANDAISE: PER SERVING: CALORIES 206 (176 from fat); FAT 20g (sat. 11g); CHOL 221mg; SODIUM 232mg; CARB 4g; FIBER 2g; PROTEIN 5g

ASPARAGUS W. ROMESCO: PER SERVING: CALORIES 144 (94 from fat); FAT 11g (sat. 1g); CHOL 0mg; SODIUM 199mg; CARB 10g; FIBER 4g; PROTEIN 5g

ASPARAGUS & HAM QUICHE: PER SERVING: CALORIES 494 (328 from fat); FAT 37g (sat. 20g); CHOL 288mg; SODIUM 925mg; CARB 19g; FIBER 1g; PROTEIN 21g

ASPARAGUS W. CHIMICHURRI: PER SERVING: CALORIES 107 (81 from fat); FAT 9g (sat. 1g); CHOL 0mg; SODIUM 401mg; CARB 5g; FIBER 2g; PROTEIN 2g

ASPARAGUS SOUP W. TARRAGON: PER SERVING: CALORIES 282 (200 from fat); FAT 23g (sat. 12g); CHOL 66mg; SODIUM 717mg; CARB 16g; FIBER 3g; PROTEIN 6g

ASPARAGUS PESTO & BRIE PIZZA: PER SERVING: CALORIES 489 (218 from fat); FAT 25g (sat. 8g); CHOL 33mg; SODIUM 727mg; CARB 51g; FIBER 6g; PROTEIN 18g


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Go-To Dishes

Approachable family meals that make everyone happy time and again RECIPES BY JENNIFER SEGAL

BANANA PANCAKES 40 real food spring 2019


hen you are cooking night after night, you need some dishes in your playbook that are slam-dunk recipes you enjoy making again and again—and that the people in your life will enjoy seeing atop

the table again and again. Cooking is fun and gratifying when recipes are simple to execute and as delicious as promised, says chef and cookbook author Jennifer Segal. So with the expertise of a classically trained professional chef and the practicality of a busy working mom, Segal created a blog called “Once Upon a Chef.” In her new cookbook of the same name, she shares recipes that combine her skills as a chef with fresh and accessible ingredients for family-friendly meals. Whether it’s an easy weeknight meal for busy parents or singles and couples facing the usual dinner dilemma, Segal has created easy meals the whole family and the chef in her will enjoy, such as those highlighted here. —Mary Subialka

Banana Pancakes MAKES 12 (4-INCH) PANCAKES

Fluffy on the inside, crispy on the outside, and delicately flavored with bananas and vanilla—these are amazing pancakes. The recipe, believe it or not, is adapted from Williams Sonoma’s “The Kid’s Cookbook,” so you know they’re simple to make. I like to top them with a heap of fresh sliced bananas to dress them up and hint at what’s inside. 11/2 cups all-purpose flour 2 tablespoons sugar 21/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1 small, overripe banana (the browner, the better) 2 eggs 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons milk 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted unsalted butter, for frying vegetable oil, for frying pure maple syrup and sliced bananas (optional), for serving 1. In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. 2. In a medium bowl, mash the banana with a fork until almost smooth. Whisk in the eggs. Add the milk and vanilla and whisk until well blended. Pour the banana mixture and melted butter into the flour mixture. Fold the batter gently with a rubber spatula until just blended; do not overmix. The batter should be thick and a bit lumpy.

3. Set a griddle or nonstick skillet over medium heat until hot. Put ½ tablespoon butter and 1 tablespoon vegetable oil on the griddle and swirl it around until the butter is melted. Using a 2-ounce ladle or ¼-cup dry measure, drop the batter onto the griddle, spacing the pancakes about 2 inches apart. Cook until a few holes form on the top of each pancake and the undersides are golden brown, about 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook until the bottoms are golden brown and the tops are puffed, 1 to 2 minutes more. Using the spatula, transfer the pancakes to a warm serving plate. 4. Wipe the griddle clean with paper towels, add more butter and oil, and repeat with the remaining batter. Serve the pancakes while still hot, topped with maple syrup and sliced bananas (if using).


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Middle Eastern Chopped Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette MAKES 4 TO 6 SERVINGS

Known in different countries by different names, the chopped salad is a Middle Eastern staple. I was first turned on to it back in the ’90s, when I was a student traveling around Israel, where the traditional “Israeli salad” is served at practically every meal, even breakfast. After having it at youth hostels, falafel stands and restaurants, I remember thinking to myself, “It’s a good thing I like this stuff!” There are many variations of this salad, depending on the country and the cook, but the base is usually diced cucumbers and tomatoes. This version is filled out with crisp bell peppers, chickpeas, feta and fresh mint. 6 tablespoons (3/8 cup or 90 mL) fresh 1 English cucumber, seeded lemon juice, from 2 lemons and diced 2 small garlic cloves, minced 1 (151/2-ounce) can chickpeas, 2 teaspoons sugar drained and rinsed 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin 4 scallions, white and green 1 teaspoon salt parts, thinly sliced 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 2/3 cup fresh chopped mint 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil 6 ounces feta cheese, diced 1 pound grape tomatoes, halved 1 yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced 1. In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice, garlic, sugar, cumin, salt and pepper. Slowly pour in the olive oil, whisking to emulsify. Add the tomatoes, bell pepper, cucumber, chickpeas, scallions and mint and toss well. Add the feta and toss gently to combine. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary. Serve the salad immediately at room temperature or chill for up to an hour. Cook’s Note: To seed a cucumber, cut it in half lengthwise, and then use a small spoon to scrape the seeds out.

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These bars taste just like the campfire classic, only taken up a notch with a graham cracker crust, chocolate ganache filling and silky meringue topping. Kids love them! The only time-consuming part of the recipe is waiting for each layer to set before proceeding with the next. I use the freezer to speed this process along. Just like real s’mores, these bars are wonderfully gooey. I serve them on dessert plates with forks or in cupcake liners with lots of napkins. For the Crust 2 cups graham cracker crumbs, from about 16 whole graham crackers 11/2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted For the Chocolate Ganache Filling 3/4 cup heavy cream 4 ounces bittersweet chocolate, chopped 8 ounces milk chocolate, chopped For the Marshmallow Meringue Topping 3 egg whites 3/4 cup granulated sugar 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar 1. To make the crust: Set an oven rack in the middle position and preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a 9-inch square baking pan with heavy-duty aluminum foil, allowing 2 inches of overhang on all sides. Spray with nonstick cooking spray. 2. In a medium bowl, using a fork, mix the graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and salt. Add the melted butter and mix until the crumbs are evenly moistened. Press the crumbs evenly and firmly into the bottom of the prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Let cool until set, about 15 minutes. 3. To make the Chocolate Ganache Filling: In a medium microwave-safe bowl, microwave the cream on high for 1 to 2 minutes, or until boiling. Add the bittersweet and milk chocolates and whisk until smooth. If the chocolate doesn’t melt completely, place the bowl back in the microwave for 20 seconds and whisk again. (Alternatively, bring the cream to a boil in a small saucepan on the stovetop; then take the pan off the heat and whisk in the chocolates.) 4. Pour the warm chocolate filling evenly over the cooled crust. Use an offset spatula or the back of a spoon to spread the mixture to the edges. Place in the freezer until the chocolate is set, about 45 minutes. 5. To make the Marshmallow Meringue Topping: Set an oven rack about 8 inches beneath the heating element and preheat the broiler. 6. Set a heatproof medium bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (the bottom of the bowl should not touch the water). Add the egg whites and granulated sugar and whisk until the whites

are warm and foamy and the sugar is completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. (Rub a little of the mixture between your fingers to make sure you don’t feel any grains of sugar.) 7. Transfer the egg white mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the whisk (or beaters). Add the vanilla and cream of tartar and beat at medium-high speed (or high speed if using an electric hand mixer) until stiff and glossy, 7 to 8 minutes. You’ll know it’s ready when you pull the whisk out of the bowl and the meringue peaks and droops over. 8. Mound the meringue on top of the cold chocolate filling, swirling it decoratively. Place the pan in the oven and broil until the meringue is lightly toasted and browned at the tips, 1 to 2 minutes. Keep a close eye on it so it doesn’t burn. Place the bars in the freezer until completely cool, about 20 minutes. 9. Using the foil overhang, lift the bars out of the pan and onto a cutting board. Cut into bars, running the knife under hot water and wiping clean between slices. Serve smaller squares in cupcake liners with napkins, and larger squares on small dessert plates with forks. Store leftover bars in an airtight container in the refrigerator, leaving a little space between them so they don’t stick, for up to 3 days. Cook’s Notes: • You might wonder if you can save time and replace the meringue topping with store-bought marshmallows. I’ve tried it, so let me save you the trial and error. While delicious toasted and eaten immediately, store-bought marshmallows harden as soon as they cool, making them a poor choice for baking. And the same goes for store-bought marshmallow cream. • For the most authentic s’mores taste, use Hershey bars for the milk chocolate. I use five Hershey’s Milk Chocolate Bars (which is just shy of 8 ounces) and a 4-ounce Ghirardelli bittersweet baking bar for the chocolate ganache filling. • These bars can be made up to 2 days ahead of time. After toasting the meringue, cover the unsliced bars with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Wait to slice the bars until ready to serve.

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Smoky Barbecued Chicken Breasts with Sweet and Tangy Barbecue Sauce MAKES 4 SERVINGS

We have a running joke about chicken in my family. Whenever I say we’re having chicken for dinner, my husband says, “Chicken again?” and then rattles off a seemingly endless list of chicken dinners his mother used to make: “Chicken Parm, chicken cutlets, chicken stir-fry, chicken casserole, chicken pot pie” and so on. The kids jump right on the bandwagon, groaning about all my chicken dinners. What they don’t realize is that this only makes me even more determined to change their minds about chicken. You could almost say I’m on a chicken crusade! Luckily, these barbecued chicken breasts always win everybody over. They are absolutely loaded with smoky barbecue flavor. Serve them with a black bean and corn salad and jalapeño cornbread, and I guarantee clean plates all around. Winner, winner chicken dinner! (Note: Allow at least 6 hours for the chicken to marinate.) 13/4 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts or chicken tenderloins 1/4 cup vegetable oil 3 garlic cloves, minced 11/4 teaspoons salt 1 tablespoon packed light brown sugar 2 teaspoons smoked paprika 1 teaspoon ground cumin 1 teaspoon chili powder 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 cup Sweet and Tangy Barbecue Sauce (see recipe right) or store-bought barbecue sauce 1. Place the chicken breasts between 2 pieces of wax or parchment paper and, using a meat mallet or rolling pin, pound to an even ½‑inch thickness. (Skip this step if using tenderloins.) 2. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, garlic, salt, brown sugar, smoked paprika, cumin, chili powder and cayenne. Place the chicken in a large sealable bag. Add the marinade to the bag, press the air out, and seal. Massage the marinade into the chicken until evenly coated. Put the bag in a bowl (to protect against leakage) and place in the refrigerator to marinate for at least 6 hours or up to 24 hours. 3. Preheat the grill to high and oil the grates. Grill the chicken, covered, for 2 to 3 minutes. Flip the chicken, and then brush with some of the barbecue sauce. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes more. (Note that tenderloins will cook faster than breasts.) 4. Transfer the chicken to a serving platter and serve with remaining barbecue sauce alongside. Cook’s Note: There are three secrets to grilling boneless, skinless chicken breasts: Pound the chicken to an even thickness so the thin part doesn’t dry out while the thick part finishes cooking. Never marinate in anything acidic like citrus juice or wine vinegar. Acids give the meat a leathery texture. Don’t overcook—when pounded thin, chicken breasts only need a few minutes per side over high heat to cook through.

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Sweet and Tangy Barbecue Sauce MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP

You can buy a tasty barbecue sauce, but it really is so easy to make your own. My kids put this sweet, tangy, smoky sauce on just about everything. Note that this recipe makes only the amount required for the Smoky Barbecued Chicken. Feel free to increase the quantities if you’d like extra; the sauce keeps well in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. 1 tablespoon vegetable oil 1/4 cup chopped yellow onion 1 garlic clove, roughly chopped 3/4 cup ketchup 1/4 cup water 2 tablespoons packed light brown sugar 11/2 tablespoons molasses 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar 11/2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce 11/2 teaspoons chili powder 1/4 teaspoon smoked paprika 1/4 teaspoon ground cumin 1. In a medium saucepan, heat the oil over medium-low heat. Add the onion and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the remaining ingredients and bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes more. Transfer the sauce to a blender or mini food processor fitted with the steel blade and blend until smooth.


This is one of my favorite recipes in the book. And even though it’s in the appetizer chapter, I often serve it for dinner. The whole family loves it, and the payoff in flavor is totally disproportionate to the effort involved. The hardest part—and, believe me, it’s not hard—is slicing the beef. After that, you simply whirl the marinade in a blender, slather it on the beef, and grill. The sauce comes together in a flash, too. There’s no need to wait for grilling weather to make these. I’ve cooked them under the broiler and in a stovetop grill pan (many times without the skewers, if I’m feeling lazy), always with success. Metal or wooden skewers may be used. You’ll need about 24 short skewers or 12 long ones. or the Peanut Sauce F 3/4 cup unsweetened coconut milk 1/4 cup creamy peanut butter 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar 1 tablespoon Thai red curry paste 1 tablespoon Sriracha 1 tablespoon fish sauce 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice, from 1 lime (use the lime you zest for the marinade)


For the Beef Satay 1 (11/2-pound) flank steak 6 tablespoons (3/8 cup or 90 mL) vegetable oil 11/2 tablespoons fish sauce 11/2 tablespoons soy sauce 3 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar 2 garlic cloves, roughly chopped zest from 1 lime 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1 teaspoon ground coriander 1 teaspoon ground cumin 1 teaspoon ground ginger 1. To make the Peanut Sauce: In a small saucepan, whisk all of the ingredients together over high heat. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer until slightly thickened, about 3 minutes. Set aside; the sauce will continue to thicken as it cools. 2. To make the Beef Satay: Cut the flank steak against the grain into slices, about ¼ inch thick. Place the steak slices in a medium bowl and set aside. 3. Combine the remaining ingredients in a blender and purée until it becomes a smooth and thick marinade. Pour the mixture over the steak slices and toss until evenly coated. 4. Thread the sliced meat onto 24 short or 12 long skewers and lay flat on an aluminum foil-lined baking sheet. Pour any marinade that’s left in the bowl over the beef skewers. 5. Preheat the grill to high, then oil the grates. Grill the skewers, covered, until the beef is browned on the outside but still pink on the inside, 1 to 2 minutes per side. Serve the satay warm with the peanut sauce on the side.

BANANA PANCAKES: PER SERVING: CALORIES 164 (79 from fat); FAT 9g (sat. 4g); SODIUM 221mg; CARB 18g; FIBER 1g; PROTEIN 4g

CHOPPED SALAD: PER SERVING: CALORIES 410 (271 from fat); FAT 31g (sat. 8g); SODIUM 913mg; CARB 26g; FIBER 6g; PROTEIN 11g

Cook’s Notes • When you read through the recipe, you might wonder if I forgot the step of letting the beef soak in the marinade. I assure you, I didn’t! The marinade is thick and clings to the meat, imparting loads of flavor in the short time it takes to cook. Go ahead and marinate longer if you want to get a head start, but know that it doesn’t make a bit of difference in terms of flavor. • Flank steak is a tough cut, but it works beautifully in this recipe because of the short cooking time. To guarantee that the meat is tender, be sure to cut it against (that is, perpendicular to) the grain. This cuts through the fibers and shortens them, making the meat easier to chew, since breaking up the muscle fibers has already been done for you. If you can’t find flank steak, skirt steak is a good substitute. Look for Thai red curry paste, Sriracha and fish sauce in the Asian food section of the market. • If using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for 20 to 30 minutes prior to using. To make the steak a cinch to cut, stick it in the freezer for 10 to 15 minutes before slicing. 

INDOOR S’MORES: PER SERVING: CALORIES 238 (125 from fat); FAT 14g (sat. 8g); SODIUM 91mg; CARB 26g; FIBER 1g; PROTEIN 3g

BARBECUED CHICKEN BREASTS: PER SERVING: CALORIES 530 (215 from fat); FAT 24g (sat. 5g); SODIUM 1335mg; CARB 33g; FIBER 1g; PROTEIN 46g

GRILLED BEEF SATAY: PER SERVING: CALORIES 318 (162 from fat); FAT 19g (sat. 7g); SODIUM 686mg; CARB 13g; FIBER 1g; PROTEIN 27g

spring 2019 real food 45

More WITH Less

Make clean eating part of every day with deliciously simple and flavorful whole-food cooking RECIPES BY JODI MORENO

46 real food spring 2019


fter another hectic day in our busy lives, it can be tempting to pick up takeout or pop a packaged frozen meal in the microwave, but it’s easier than you think to cook at home—even with healthy plant-based whole foods.

Trained natural food chef Jodi Moreno is known for keeping her food simple while still creating bold, satisfying flavors using homemade condiments, whole-food ingredients and approachable, easy techniques to make clean eating part of everyone’s busy schedule. Moreno hopes her recipes will inspire people to cook more often if they have the tools to make simple, wholesome, delicious meals almost any day of the week. In these recipes from her book, “More with Less,” you can whip up chickpea crepes that pose infinite possibilities, fish tacos, a gluten-free version of pad thai made with cucumber noodles, and more. “Ultimately cooking should be fun, approachable and celebrated, and not just on special occasions but as a part of a daily routine,” says Moreno. “After all, food you eat should make you happy, and if it makes you feel great too, well, that’s the (dairy-free) icing on the cake.” —Mary Subialka

Cucumber Noodle Pad Thai MAKES 2 TO 4 SERVINGS

When the weather gets warm, I love making light salads with raw veggie noodles. I especially love using delicious sauces and preparations from dishes that would typically use a regular pasta or noodle, just like this “pad thai” recipe. To make the noodles, you can use a spiralizer or the more humble (but just as effective) julienne peeler. If you have neither, I would recommend starting with the julienne peeler. It’s an inexpensive investment that will end up getting a lot of use. Spiralizing cucumbers can be a bit tricky, and you usually end up with a little less yield than you do from the zucchini, which is why I included two cucumbers in the recipe. Be sure to chop up and save any cucumber that doesn’t get spiralized for another use or just add them on top of this salad. 2 cucumbers, julienned or spiralized lengthwise 1 medium green zucchini, julienned or spiralized lengthwise 1 medium yellow zucchini, julienned or spiralized lengthwise ¼ cup Sweet and Spicy Peanut Sauce (see recipe right) 3 scallions, white and light green parts only, thinly sliced ¼ cup peanuts or cashews, finely chopped handful of cilantro, roughly chopped 7 to 10 basil leaves, roughly chopped Nori Gomasio for serving (optional) (see recipe right) toasted sesame or hemp seeds for serving (optional) 1. In a large bowl, toss together the cucumber and zucchini noodles. Spoon in the peanut sauce little by little until the veggie noodles are dressed as much as you like. Toss to make sure all of the noodles are evenly coated. 2. Sprinkle with the scallions, nuts, cilantro and basil, and the Nori Gomasio [Japanese condiment “finishing salt”] and seeds, if using, or any other toppings that you like, and serve immediately.

Sweet and Spicy Peanut Sauce MAKES ABOUT ½ CUP

A classic peanut sauce is delicious and has so many uses beyond noodles. This sauce pairs particularly well with sweet potatoes, so I use it over Thai Peanut Sweet Potato Skins as well as over the raw Cucumber Noodle Pad Thai. ¼ cup peanut or almond butter 2 tablespoons tamari or coconut aminos 2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lime juice 1 or 2 dashes hot sauce 1 thumbnail-size piece ginger 1 small clove garlic, minced 2 teaspoons honey 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil 1. Put the peanut butter, tamari, vinegar, lime juice, hot sauce, ginger, garlic, honey and sesame oil into a food processor and run continuously until smooth. Add about 2 tablespoons of water, or just enough that the mixture will coat the back of a spoon. Serve immediately. This will keep for about 1 week in an airtight container in the fridge.

Nori Gomasio MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP

Heat a medium frying pan over low heat and add 1 cup sesame seeds. Cook for 3 to 5 minutes, until golden brown. Transfer the seeds to a food processor along with 1 tablespoon sea salt and 1 sheet toasted nori, coarsely chopped, and pulse just a few times until the mixture is uniform in size (tiny granules), but be careful not to overprocess as you still want texture to the sesame seeds. This will last for several months in an airtight jar in the pantry.

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Almond-Crusted Fish Tacos with Quick Pickled Chilies and Avocado Mash MAKES 4 SERVINGS

Is there anything better than a taco? Just hearing the word makes me happy and brings back so many memories—from my mom’s taco Tuesdays to our wedding in Mexico. The best is a fish taco with a little bit of crispness on the outside of the fish. It’s also the ideal thing to make when friends come over and want to help out in the kitchen. Tacos are great to feed a crowd because they are easy to make, and people can build their own to their tastes, which means you can easily offer vegetarian options too. Avocado Mash 2 ripe avocados juice of 1 lime 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 3 scallions, white and light green parts only, minced handful of cilantro, chopped pinch of sea salt freshly ground black pepper, to taste Fish 1 egg, lightly beaten ½ cup almonds, finely chopped ½ cup cornmeal 1 teaspoon chili powder ½ teaspoon garlic powder ½ teaspoon sea salt freshly ground black pepper, to taste 2 pounds white fish (such as cod or halibut) olive oil, to drizzle To Serve Several soft flour or corn taco tortillas Quick Pickled Red Chilies (recipe right) 1. Make the Avocado Mash: Put the avocado, lime juice, olive oil, scallions, cilantro, salt and pepper in a medium bowl and mash the avocado until smooth and all of the ingredients are combined. Place in the fridge until you’re ready to serve. 2. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. 3. For the Fish: Put the egg in a shallow bowl. In another shallow bowl, mix together the almond, cornmeal, chili powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper. 4. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Cut the fish into 4-inch-long and 2-inch-wide pieces. Dip the fish pieces, one at a time, into the egg and then into the almond mixture, making sure each piece is evenly coated. Place them on the baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil. When all of the fish pieces have been coated, bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Transfer to a serving plate. 5. To assemble, place 1 or 2 pieces of fish onto a tortilla, top with a couple of pickled chilies and some avocado mash. Repeat with the remaining ingredients. 48 real food spring 2019

Quick Pickled Red Chilies MAKES ABOUT 1 CUP

Quick pickles are an easy way to add a flavorful punch to salads, sandwiches, roasted veggies or tacos. You can follow this simple formula to quick pickle anything, and you get to eat them just 30 minutes later. Alternatively, you can store your quick pickles in an airtight jar in the fridge and enjoy them for weeks. Feel free to play around with different herbs or spices added to the brine to give layers of flavor. 1 cup sliced red chilies 1 cup water ½ cup apple cider vinegar 2 tablespoons white granulated sugar 1 tablespoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon cumin seed 1. Slice the red chilies as you wish, and pack them into a mason jar with a tight-fitting lid. Put the water, vinegar, sugar, salt and cumin seed into a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil, remove from the heat, and allow the liquid to cool for about 10 minutes, then pour the liquid over the vegetables. Allow to cool to room temperature before serving, or before covering and storing in the fridge. These will keep for about 1 month in the fridge.

Garlic and Lemon Marinated Artichokes with Quinoa Pilaf MAKES 3 TO 6 SERVINGS

Anyone who knows me well knows of my deep love for artichokes. They were a special afterschool snack for me as a kid, and steamed artichokes were one of the first recipes I tackled in college. As I became braver and more experimental in the kitchen, I came up with new ideas for artichoke recipes, and these marinated, stuffed artichokes have become my favorite way to prepare them. While the marinating requires a little extra time and work, this is a great make-ahead kind of meal. You can steam and marinate the artichokes on the weekend, and even prepare the pilaf ahead of time, and then eat them throughout the week at your leisure while any extras continue marinating in the fridge. You can also skip the marinating or the pilaf and serve these simply grilled with a side of butter or aioli. Artichokes 3 globe artichokes ½ cup extra virgin olive oil 5 cloves garlic, pressed juice from 2 lemons sea salt freshly ground black pepper red pepper flakes (optional)

Quinoa Pilaf 1 cup quinoa 2 cups water sea salt drizzle of extra virgin olive oil squeeze of lemon juice ⅓ cup toasted almonds or pine nuts ¼ cup chopped parsley 5 to 7 basil leaves, chopped

To Serve Miso Butter or Basil Cilantro Aioli (see recipes right) 1. For the artichokes: Slice off the top half of the artichokes but keep the stems intact. Using scissors, snip off the tops of the leaves where the prickly bits are. Place a large pot of water with a steamer basket over high heat (make sure the water comes up to the basket but does not go over) and bring to a boil. Place the artichokes in the steamer basket, cover, and steam for 30 minutes. Remove them from the pot and allow them to cool slightly. 2. While the artichokes are steaming, prepare the marinade. Place the olive oil, garlic, lemon juice, pinch of salt, black pepper and red pepper flakes, if using, in a large, shallow bowl or baking dish. When the artichokes have cooled, slice them down the center. Using a spoon, scoop out the prickly insides that surround the heart. Put the artichokes in the bowl or dish with the marinade and make sure to coat all sides in the marinade. Cover, and put them in the fridge until you are ready to serve. It is best to marinate them overnight or for a day, but if you don’t have the time you can marinate them for 20 to 30 minutes (or skip it altogether). You can keep them marinating for a few days if you like. 3. For the Quinoa Pilaf: Put the quinoa, water and salt in a medium saucepan, bring to a boil, cover, reduce to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes. Remove from the heat, add the olive oil, lemon juice, nuts, parsley and basil, and cover again while you’re grilling the artichokes. 4. Heat the grill or a grill pan to medium-high. Place the artichokes cut side down and grill for about 5 minutes on each side. 5. To serve, place the artichokes on a plate, cut side up. Fill the cavity near the heart with the quinoa pilaf, and serve with miso butter or aioli on the side, or the dipping sauce of your choice (to dip the leaves).

Miso Butter MAKES ¼ CUP

Miso butter is the greatest thing to happen to both miso and butter. It is a flavor bomb that explodes when tossed with anything, but especially with vegetables. It is so good, I often make a double batch and just keep it in the fridge so it is always ready, especially for a quick and casual weeknight meal. 1. Place 4 teaspoons white miso and 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened at room temperature, in a small bowl and mix with a fork. To store, roll it into a log using parchment paper, trim any excess off the edges of the parchment, and wrap it tightly in plastic wrap. Store in the fridge until ready to use. This will keep for a couple of weeks in the fridge.

Basil Cilantro Aioli MAKES 3 TO 6 SERVINGS

1 large handful cilantro, finely chopped 6 basil leaves, finely chopped 1 clove garlic, minced juice of ½ lemon (about 1 tablespoon) ⅓ cup mayonnaise sea salt, to taste freshly ground black pepper, to taste 1. In a small bowl whisk together the cilantro, basil, garlic, lemon juice and mayonnaise, and season with salt and pepper.

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50 real food spring 2019

Chickpea Crepes MAKES 4 SERVINGS

Chickpea crepes are a delicious, savory vehicle for smashed avocado, hummus, a fresh tomato and cucumber salad or soft scrambled eggs. I make these for breakfast often because they are easy to whip up when you want something filling and crepelike. I usually double or triple the batter and keep any extras in a container in the fridge for when I crave them (which is often). Plus, I can easily fry up a couple for myself, or for when I want to feed a bunch of friends for brunch. In addition to relying on the classic batter, I also love to play around and add spices, herbs and other items to give the batter a little boost of flavor. The basic recipe is great for just about everything, especially smashed avocados with just a squeeze of lime. Adding cumin and jalapeño to the batter gives it a nice, spicy, aromatic kick and is best paired with a simple tomato-cucumber salad. The crepes are also perfect topped with scrambled eggs, along with some paprika and scallions. These are just some suggestions, so feel free to experiment with different toppings and additions to the basic recipe. The batter keeps for several days in the fridge. 1 cup chickpea flour 1 cup water 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil ½ teaspoon kosher salt ghee or extra virgin olive oil, for cooking 1. Put the chickpea flour, water, olive oil and salt in a medium mixing bowl and whisk until combined. Allow the batter to sit, at room temperature, for about 30 minutes. Alternatively, you can store this batter in an airtight container in the fridge for up to 1 week. 2. Heat a large cast iron or frying pan over high heat. When the pan is hot, lower it to medium heat and add enough ghee or olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan. Add about ½ cup of the batter, using a ladle, and spread the batter (just slightly) using the back of the ladle. The pancake should be slightly thinner and larger in circumference than a more traditional pancake, about ⅛ inch thick. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes on each side. The crepe is ready to flip when you see some bubbles popping on the surface. Transfer to a plate and serve with toppings of your choice.

Smashed Avocado Crepes 1. Prepare the Basic Chickpea Crepe batter. Follow cooking instructions (Step 2 above) and top with 1 roughly mashed avocado and a squeeze of lime.

Cumin and Jalapeño Crepe with Tomato and Cucumber Salad 1. Prepare the Basic Chickpea Crepe batter and stir in 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 deseeded and minced jalapeño, and a handful of cilantro, roughly chopped. Follow cooking instructions (Step 2 above) for the Basic Chickpea Crepe recipe. 2. For the Tomato and Cucumber Salad: In a large bowl, toss 1 dozen cherry tomatoes, halved; 1 cucumber, chopped; 1 avocado, chopped; and a handful of arugula, chopped. Mix in a drizzle of olive oil and a squeeze of lemon or lime juice, then season with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Serve the salad on top of the cooked chickpea crepe.

Paprika Chili Crepe and Soft Scrambled Eggs with Chives 1. Prepare the Basic Chickpea Crepe batter and stir in 1 teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon chili powder and 1 scallion, white and light green parts only, minced. Follow cooking instructions (Step 2 above) for the Basic Chickpea Crepe recipe. 2. For the eggs: Stir 2 tablespoons minced chives, a pinch of sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste, into 4 lightly beaten eggs. Heat 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil in a medium pan over medium-low heat. Add the egg mixture and cook while continually stirring (the secret to a soft scramble is to always be stirring). The eggs take a little longer to cook (about 7 minutes), but they come out soft and creamy. Serve on top of the cooked crepes. 



CUCUMBER NOODLE PAD THAI: PER SERVING: CALORIES 419 (242 from fat); FAT 29g (sat. 5g); SODIUM 1419mg; CARB 32g; FIBER 7g; PROTEIN 17g

FISH TACOS: PER SERVING: CALORIES 1073 (516 from fat); FAT 60g (sat. 10g); SODIUM 1221mg; CARB 76g; FIBER 12g; PROTEIN 60g

ARTICHOKES W. PILAF (NO SAUCE): PER SERVING: CALORIES 249 (108 from fat); FAT 12g (sat. 2g); SODIUM 188mg; CARB 30g; PROTEIN 8g

CHICKPEA CREPES: PER SERVING: CALORIES 216 (140 from fat); FAT 16g (sat. 4g); SODIUM 253mg; CARB 13g; FIBER 3g; PROTEIN 5g

spring 2019 real food 51

Harnessing Flavor

Christopher Kimball on a new approach to cooking BY TARA Q. THOMAS

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hen Christopher Kimball graduated from Columbia University in the late 1980s, he could have done anything. Raised in Westchester County, New York, and schooled at Phillips Exeter Academy, a boarding school in New Hampshire, he had smarts and connections; an art degree from Columbia left the choices wide open. What’s surprising is that he decided to join the food-magazine fray, scraping together $110,000 from friends and family, and launching Cook’s magazine next to Gourmet, Bon Appetit, Food & Wine, and Cuisine. “They were all lifestyle magazines. They weren’t about cooking; they were about eating. I had a bunch of questions and couldn’t get them answered,” Kimball reflects. “And I loved to cook. I thought it’d be kinda cool to try to figure it out.” He turned that little magazine—a simple-bound collection of black-and-white pages, with drawings of food rather than photographs and not a celebrity to be seen—into a major multimedia company within 15 years. Cook’s would morph into Cook’s Illustrated in 1993, and then came Cook’s Country as well as the television shows, Cook’s Country and America’s Test Kitchen; a radio show and podcast; and an array of cookbooks under his brand. By the time Kimball left in 2015, his cooking show was the most popular on public television, and his bow-tied visage was famous. After an acrimonious breakup with his former empire in 2015, Kimball has opened a new chapter of his life, launching Milk Street in an old building on Milk Street in Boston. The new company looks a bit like the old in structure. There are test kitchens and offices, a magazine, cooking show, radio program and podcast. There is also an online retail store and a cooking school for recreational cooking classes as well as nonprofit educational programs for children and adults. But his latest book, “Milk Street Tuesday Nights,” shows a massive shift in philosophy. Gone are the restrained line drawings, replaced by a glossy, full-page color photograph for every recipe, and the notes are short and to the point, rather than detailing all the trials and discoveries made in the test kitchen. And, most notably, the recipes pull from all over the globe: Tortilla española comes between kofta, a Middle Eastern meatball, and Pao Fan, a Chinese dish of brothy rice with bok choy and chicken. Asia might be the most frequent influence among the recipes, but the book makes stops in Africa, South America, the Mediterranean and more. Meanwhile, the recipes are categorized by the time it takes to get them on the table (“Fast,” “Faster” and “Fastest”) with two others (“One Pot” and “Roast and Simmer”) dedicated to dishes that take longer to cook but require little active time in the kitchen. What changed? I caught him between stops on his book tour to find out. “If you go around the world, you realize that what I’ve been doing for 30 or 40 years—which is essentially Northern European cooking—is great, but it’s only a tiny percentage of how the world cooks,” Kimball says. “And most of the people around the world have much better ideas!”


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—Christopher Kimball


54 real food spring 2019

for rigatoni par-cooked in the same water that cooked the broccoli, and then finished in a sauce made from pureed broccoli stems. The result isn’t just packed with flavor—the starch from the pasta also combines with the sauce to make it creamy and rich-tasting without any butter or cream. The plethora of condiments available today also make it easy to supercharge your cooking, he says, whether it’s kimchi to add effortless zing to your fried rice, or smoked paprika to give a meaty savor to a vegetarian chickpeaand-spinach stew. “Gochuang sauce from Korea—that’s going to be ubiquitous in another three or four years,” Kimball predicts, noting that he recently discovered potato chips flavored with the chili paste in the supermarket. He uses the condiment in his new cookbook to jazz up chicken salad and to make a spicy glaze for potatoes. He’s also big on zaatar, a Middle Eastern spice blend based on wild thyme and sesame seeds. “If you’re going to buy a spice blend, zaatar would be by far the most useful one, because you can put in on virtually anything, from your eggs in the morning to your chicken at night,” he says. And tahini, the Middle Eastern sesame paste, has many more possibilities than just enriching hummus. Flip through “Milk Street Tuesday Nights,” and you can find it added in a creamy pasta sauce—an option that gets some protein into dinner without the addition of meat as well as a nutty complement to chocolate in a sumptuous pudding. Other ingredients he recommends every home cook have on hand are whole cumin and coriander plus a pepper other than black pepper or crushed red pepper flakes. Stock your pantry with good soy sauce, fish sauce and pomegranate molasses, an item that although new for many, is found at many supermarkets. The very fact that these ingredients are stocked next to the ketchups and oyster sauce in the grocery store, or are at the very least available by mail order, is evidence of a shift in how we cook as a country. “This book wouldn’t have been possible 10 years ago,” Kimball reflects. “Restaurants have really led the way; even in smaller towns you can probably get some decent Mexican food, versus when I grew up, you had strip-mall Chinese [food]. People now are more familiar with the good stuff, and you can get it.”


“If you go around the world, you realize that what I’ve been doing for 30 or 40 years—which is essentially Northern European cooking—is great, but it’s only a tiny percentage of how the world cooks.”

By “better ideas,” he explains, he means faster, fresher and more flavorful, qualities that have become increasingly important as our lives become busier. “The Northern European philosophy was take good ingredients, apply heat, time and technique to develop flavor,” he says, offering beef bourgignon as an example. It’s a stew that requires very few ingredients, so success depends on the quality of your ingredients, the perfection of your technique and the time to let it all come together in the pot. “That’s not at all how the rest of the world cooks,” he says. “The rest of the world goes, ‘Hey, let’s take a bunch of really flavorful ingredients and put them together.’ It’s not about the cooking, and it’s not about the technique. It’s about the combination of flavors and textures, and you pretty quickly end up with something that’s got a lot of flavor because you started with lots of flavor.” Packing flavor into every dish is especially important, he finds, in a world where the quality of the raw ingredients isn’t as good as it might be. The classical French cooking that forms the core of Northern European cooking—and, by extension, North American cooking—developed in a time before chickens were raised in factories, vegetables were bred for hardiness and fruit was picked unripe for ease of shipping. “If the chicken has no flavor, the tomatoes have no flavor and the thyme has no flavor, and you’re applying French technique, that’s pretty hard because you’re not starting with flavor,” Kimball says. “Now you have to have really good technique to develop flavor.” You could take the time to develop that technique, working up ways to concentrate what flavor you can—Kimball’s former approach— but Kimball suggests just moving on and finding techniques that work well now, and fast. He calls out stir-fried rice as an example: “Stir-fried rice takes five minutes and you can’t lose,” Kimball says. “You’ve got a little bit of meat in there, you’ve got onion, garlic, shallot, fish sauce, you might have soy sauce, an egg; you have a bunch of stuff. No matter how badly you screw it up, it’s still going to have a lot of flavor.” He’s also big on the Italian trick of boiling pasta until it is barely al dente and then letting it finish in the sauce so it absorbs extra flavor. He has a recipe in “Milk Street Tuesday Nights”

“I really do think that we are really at the tipping point of how we cook at home,” he says. “If you think about how people cook in this country, it’s very Fannie Farmer,” he says, referring to the seminal American cookbook that was published in 1896. “We’ve stuck to an oldfashioned way of cooking that doesn’t really make that much sense anymore.” Now, thanks to chefs across the country pulling from a wide world of flavors and techniques, we’re exposed to more and different cuisines than ever before. So, to Kimball’s point, why not cook at home the sort of food that we like to eat out? There’s no reason to wait for Saturday night for your favorite Vietnamese ginger beef-and-rice-noodle salad or chicken tacos when the ingredients aren’t hard to find, the dishes are faster and fresher than tuna-noodle casserole, and it’s just as easy to pull off. Besides, he adds, there may be advantages that extend beyond the dinner plate. Expanding the home meal beyond the American staples fosters connections, too. He relates a story about filming an episode of his television show in Beijing with a woman who was making scallion pancakes. “She started laughing at me because I was doing it all wrong. I asked her how long it took her to learn to do it right. She said five years. I showed her how to make pie crust, and she messed it all up. We didn’t speak the same language, but we laughed—we could understand each other, because we were cooking.” Because of this, Kimball bristles at the term “ethnic food”—"Ethnic implies looking from outside in. If you live there, you’re not making ethnic food; you are just making food, the same thing I’m doing here, just differently.” Kimball’s quest these days is to open our eyes to all the different ways people around the world have learned to harness flavor and to bring the best of those techniques into our kitchens to make us better, happier cooks. To him, it’s not about ingredients or about assigning dishes a particular ethnicity. It’s about finding methods that capitalize on the ingredients and time we have available (for better or worse). “The best is when you come up with a technique that’s not about having a particular ingredient,” he says. “It’s about how you cook, about making changes that make cooking simpler and better. That’s the home run.” 

Kimchi and Bacon Fried Rice MAKES 4 SERVINGS

This fried rice is a great way to use up kimchi that has been languishing in your refrigerator. Spreading the seasoned rice in an even layer in the skillet and letting it cook undisturbed for a few minutes allows tasty charred bits to form on the bottom, so don’t be impatient and stir too soon. The fried egg that tops each serving not only completes the dish with a hit of protein, but the yolk, when broken, flows onto the rice, adding a richness that heightens the flavors. Don’t use long-grain rice. Japanese-style short-grain rice gives the dish a satisfying stickiness and chew. Don’t use a conventional skillet; a nonstick pan is needed to prevent the rice from sticking.

3¼ cups cooked Japanese-style short-grain rice, preferably chilled 6 ounces bacon, preferably thick-cut, chopped 1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped 2 cups well-drained napa cabbage kimchi, roughly chopped, plus 2 tablespoons kimchi juice 1 tablespoon soy sauce 1 cup frozen peas, thawed 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil 4 scallions, thinly sliced on diagonal kosher salt and ground black pepper 4 large eggs furikake seasoning or nori cut into slivers, to serve (optional)

1. If the rice is chilled, use your fingers to break apart any large clumps. Set a mesh strainer over a small heatproof bowl and place near the stovetop. In a 12-inch nonstick skillet over medium, cook the bacon until well browned, 10 to 12 minutes. Scraping the pan, pour into the strainer; reserve the bacon fat. 2. Return 1 tablespoon of the fat to the skillet, add the onion and cook over medium, stirring, until softened, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in the rice and cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Drizzle the kimchi juice, soy sauce and 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat over the rice and stir. Spread the rice in an even layer, increase heat to high and cook until browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. 3. Scrape along the bottom of the pan and flip the rice, then redistribute and cook until again browned on the bottom, another 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the kimchi, bacon, peas, sesame oil and scallions. Cook, stirring, until hot, 1 to 2 minutes. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a bowl and cover with foil. 4. Wipe out the skillet with paper towels. Add 1 tablespoon of the bacon fat and heat over medium-high until barely smoking. Swirl to coat the pan, then crack an egg in each quadrant. Immediately reduce to medium-low and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Cook until the whites are set but the yolks are still runny, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. 5. Serve the fried rice on individual plates, topped with a fried egg and sprinkled with furikake, if using.

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Cheers to Brunch Cocktails make a match with both sweet and savory sides of your midday feast BY MARY SUBIALKA


avory egg dishes and sweet delights touched with maple and cinnamon flavors often come together in a brunch spread. While coffee is often the go-to breakfast drink, for something a little more celebratory, pair food from both sides of the flavor spectrum with classic cocktails or go for twists on the usual suspects. Frequent Real Food contributor Serena Bass—caterer extraordinaire and executive chef at Lido restaurant in Harlem, New York—suggests the all-time favorite bloody mary (vodka in seasoned tomato juice) to go with eggs, bacon, home fries, and anything spicy or salty. If you want a twist on a peppery flavor without tomato, go instead with her Pepparade cocktail (recipe below), which mixes up a fresh lemon creation with the spice. Classic mimosas (orange juice topped with sparkling wine) go well with sweeter things, Bass says, including waffles, pancakes, French toast, beignets and fresh doughnuts. Also try Bellinis, which switch up orange for peach flavors: Make a peach puree, keep the skin if you want a pinker color, strain and refrigerate. Add a little simple syrup until the peach flavor is full and perfumed. Use this puree for ¼ of the glass and top with Prosecco. Add slowly, and stir as you add, suggests Bass, since it tends to overflow. Her Heart of Sharpness cocktail (recipe below) also pairs well with the sweet side of brunch. Both of the following cocktails are extremely simple but very delicious, notes Bass. Each recipe makes one cocktail and could easily be multiplied and served in pretty glass pitchers to help make brunch a breeze.

Pepparade “This is shockingly delicious and just a little addictive,” says Serena Bass. “It seems so simple, but the flavors are wonderful together and the heat from the spicy vodka will be a fun surprise.” Stir together 11/2 ounces fresh lemon juice and 2 tablespoons superfine sugar until there are no crystals left. Do not heat or you’ll change the sharp flavor of the lemon. Pour into a cocktail shaker half full of ice and add 11/2 ounces Absolut Peppar vodka. Shake for at least 10 seconds and pour over ice in a rocks glass. Serve with a spear of hot or sweet red pepper standing vertically at the edge of the glass.

Heart of Sharpness “This is an updated little take on a champagne cocktail. It is delicious with sweet brunch food like pancakes or French toast and is one of our best sellers at Lido restaurant,” says Bass. Muddle 1 tablespoon (1/2 ounce) simple syrup, 2 strips orange zest (removed with a peeler) and 4 drops Angostura Bitters. Top with Prosecco and stir gently. Strain into a rocks glass or a stemmed wine glass half full of ice. Garnish with a twist of orange zest.  PHOTOGRAPHY TERRY BRENNAN FOOD STYLING LARA MIKLASEVICS

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