Sunday, April 17, 2011

Crab stuffed flounder

If I had to choose my favorite fish, I'm certain it would be flounder, with cod and haddock a close second. I just really enjoy the delicate flavor of this fish but then when you add some Maine lump crabmeat to the formula, a bit of spinach, seasoned panko and a drizzle of limoncello sauce on top--what's not to love? It's light, bright and oh so delicious!

Crab Stuffed Flounder Rolls

1 1/2 lbs flounder
1/2 cup baby spinach
1 shallot, minced
2 tsp olive oil
1/2 cup seasoned panko crumbs
1/2 lb. jumbo lump crab meat, picked through for shells
juice of one lemon
zest of one lemon
sea salt, white pepper
fresh herb blend--minced rosemary, savory and thyme leaf

Limoncello cream sauce

Approximately 2 teaspoons Lemon Zest
1/8 cup Limoncello
1/2 cup light cream

Gently warm the cream with the grated lemon zest. Once warmed, add the limoncello and stir well for just a moment or two.

Squeeze the lemon over flounder filets and season with sea salt and white pepper. Place filets in a buttered casserole and set aside. Wilt spinach in olive oil in a small skillet. Add shallots, panko crumbs and lump crab meat. Heat just a few minutes. Spread this stuffing over the filets evenly, and roll each, making sure the seam side ends up on the bottom. Drizzle just a bit of olive oil over each stuffed filet and top with herb blend. Bake in a 400 degree oven for twenty minutes. Drizzle with a light limoncello cream sauce and serve. Enjoy!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Asparagus Quiche

Somebody goofed at the market this week and we ended up with three dozen eggs in our refrigerator. So to use up some of the surplus I decided to make a fave quiche dish. I mean how many Easter eggs can I possibly make?

I'm kind of crazy about asparagus this time of year, so in that went as well as carmelized onions and topped with tomato slices. I prefer to make my dough, but for those in a hurry, a prepared crust will do. We've been eating a lot of seafood and fish in particular these past weeks, so this was a nice change. Served with a side of Spring greens-- an easy meal for those who are running late as I've been most of these past weeks. Farmers markets begins next week, so between this and working the gardens, I've been doing a lot of scrambling here, preparing meals that can be made in a jiff.

Asparagus Quiche

1 1/2 cups onions, sliced
1 medium leek, sliced
1/2 cup asparagus-cut into 1 inch pieces
1 TBLS olive oil
1 TBLS unsalted butter
fresh thyme, sea salt & ground pepper
3/4 cup swiss cheese, sliced thin
3 large tomatoes, sliced thin
1/3 cup light cream
1/3 cup milk
2 large eggs
fresh parsley, minced
3 or 4 shakes of ground nutmeg
2 TBLS grated Piave or Parmesan cheese

For the crust:

2 1/2 cups flour
1 cup cold butter, cubed
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/4 – 1/2 cup cold water

In a food processor, combine the flour, salt and 1 tsp sugar until well mixed. Add the butter using pulses until you no longer see chunks of butter in the dough. Use pulses to get the dough to mix together correctly, it does a better job of breaking up the butter than just letting the machine run.

Slowly add the cold water a tablespoon at a time while pulsing the dough until it is evenly distributed and it begins to look like little peas. You may not need to use all the water, and you do not want the dough to be too wet – it should not be sticky, but should hold together, barely.

Remove the dough from the food processor and knead for a few minutes until it begins to smooth out. Don't over-knead the dough, you just want it to come together and smooth out a little bit, it should really only take a couple of minutes. Divide the dough in half, flatten into discs, cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate for about an hour.

Meanwhile, slice the onions and saute them in 1 TBL olive oil with 1 TBLS butter until lightly browned. Sprinkle a teaspoon of sugar over the onions, stir and set aside covered to cool. Slice leek and cut asparagus into one inch pieces. Toss them into the cooling onions and cover.

Remove dough from refrigerator ten minutes before you begin to roll out your dough, on a lightly floured board. Line a tart mold, and prick the bottom with a fork. Next, thinly slice the Swiss cheese and spread it over the dough. Now cover the cheese with your onion/asparagus/leek mixture. Top with tomato slices. Lightly beat the eggs with the cream, milk and grated Piave. Season with sea salt, ground pepper, chopped parsley and nutmeg. Evenly pour this mixture over the quiche. Bake in a pre-heated 350 degree oven 40 minutes or until golden brown on top. I serve this warm, but not hot. Enjoy!