Cooking With Honey – Mixed Greens With Honey Oregano Vinaigrette And Crispy Prosciutto

oregano salad

For the last two months I’ve been traveling the East Coast attending Bee Meetings and visiting adult children. It’s been lots of fun although I feel a bit like a long haul trucker. 🙂

I’ve visited the Biltmore Estate in North Carolina, Frank Lloyd Wright’s Fallingwater in Pennsylvania, and the beehive/kitchen garden at the White House in Washington DC. I’ll be posting about my trips over the next few weeks.

Of course I’ve been eating and drinking along the way !! One of my favorite meals was at Nonna’s Italian in West Chester, Pennsylvania, where I had one of the best salads I’ve ever tasted. Not surprisingly, the original recipe calls for honey!!

Whether you make this salad as a prelude to a meal or for the meal itself, I guarantee you will enjoy it!!

Yield:  10 servings

Dressing:

2-3 cloves garlic, chopped fine

1/4 cup white wine vinegar

2-3 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves

1 teaspoon honey

1 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon black or red pepper, depending on your taste

3/4 cup olive oil

Directions:

Place all ingredients in lidded jar and shake until combined. Let stand for up to two hours for flavors to blend.

Crispy Prosciutto:

Twelve slices prosciutto.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper. Divide prosciutto between baking sheets, laying them flat. Bake until fat turns golden and meat is darker, about 15 minutes (rotating baking sheets from top to bottom halfway through baking time). Using tongs, carefully transfer prosciutto to paper towels to drain (it will crisp as it cools). Crispy prosciutto can be used like bacon, in whole pieces or crumbled.

Salad:

Twelve cups mixed greens

1 1/2 cups thinly sliced red onion, separated into rings

12 small/cherry tomatoes, sliced into quarters

1 tablespoon capers

1/4 cup sliced and pitted kalamata olives

12 slices crispy prosciutto, crumbled fine.

Directions:

Mix well and serve with Italian bread and olive oil.

Julia’s Iconic Recipe For Boeuf Bourguignon – With A Touch Of Honey

Be sure and watch the video. It’s a classic!

This is my favorite of Julia’s recipes, with French Onion Soup a close second. Of course, a touch of honey only makes it better!!

Yield:  6 servings

Ingredients

One 6-ounce piece of chunk bacon

3 1/2 tablespoons olive oil

3 pounds lean stewing beef, cut into 2-inch cubes

1 carrot, sliced

1 onion, sliced

Salt and pepper

2 tablespoons flour

3 cups red wine, young and full-bodied (like Beaujolais, Cotes du Rhone or Burgundy)

2 1/2 to 3 1/2 cups brown beef stock

1 tablespoon tomato paste

2 cloves mashed garlic

1/2 teaspoon thyme

A crumbled bay leaf

2 tablespoons honey

18 to 24 white onions, small

3 1/2 tablespoons butter

Herb bouquet (4 parsley sprigs, one-half bay leaf, one-quarter teaspoon thyme, tied in cheesecloth)

1 pound mushrooms, fresh and quartered

Cooking Directions

Remove bacon rind and cut into lardons (sticks 1/4-inch thick and 1 1/2 inches long). Simmer rind and lardons for 10 minutes in 1 1/2 quarts water. Drain and dry.

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

Sauté lardons in 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a flameproof casserole over moderate heat for 2 to 3 minutes to brown lightly. Remove to a side dish with a slotted spoon.

Dry beef in paper towels; it will not brown if it is damp. Heat fat in casserole until almost smoking. Add beef, a few pieces at a time, and sauté until nicely browned on all sides. Add it to the lardons.

In the same fat, brown the sliced vegetables. Pour out the excess fat.

Return the beef and bacon to the casserole and toss with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Then sprinkle on the flour and toss again to coat the beef lightly. Set casserole uncovered in middle position of preheated oven for 4 minutes.

Toss the meat again and return to oven for 4 minutes (this browns the flour and coves the meat with a light crust).

Remove casserole and turn oven down to 325 degrees.

Stir in wine and 2 to 3 cups stock, just enough so that the meat is barely covered.

Add the tomato paste, garlic, herbs, honey and bacon rind. Bring to a simmer on top of the stove.

Cover casserole and set in lower third of oven. Regulate heat so that liquid simmers very slowly for 3 to 4 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.

While the beef is cooking, prepare the onions and mushrooms.

Heat 1 1/2 tablespoons butter with one and one-half tablespoons of the oil until bubbling in a skillet.

Add onions and sauté over moderate heat for about 10 minutes, rolling them so they will brown as evenly as possible. Be careful not to break their skins. You cannot expect them to brown uniformly.

Add 1/2 cup of the stock, salt and pepper to taste and the herb bouquet.

Cover and simmer slowly for 40 to 50 minutes until the onions are perfectly tender but hold their shape, and the liquid has evaporated. Remove herb bouquet and set onions aside.

Wipe out skillet and heat remaining oil and butter over high heat. As soon as you see butter has begun to subside, indicating it is hot enough, add mushrooms.

Toss and shake pan for 4 to 5 minutes. As soon as they have begun to brown lightly, remove from heat.

When the meat is tender, pour the contents of the casserole into a sieve set over a saucepan.

Wash out the casserole and return the beef and lardons to it. Distribute the cooked onions and mushrooms on top.

Skim fat off sauce in saucepan. Simmer sauce for a minute or 2, skimming off additional fat as it rises. You should have about 2 1/2 cups of sauce thick enough to coat a spoon lightly.

If too thin, boil it down rapidly. If too thick, mix in a few tablespoons stock. Taste carefully for seasoning.

Pour sauce over meat and vegetables. Cover and simmer 2 to 3 minutes, basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce several times.

Serve in casserole, or arrange stew on a platter surrounded with potatoes, noodles or rice, and decorated with parsley.

REMEMBER TO LIKE ROMANCING THE BEE ON FACEBOOK TO WIN PRIZES!

Vegetarian Honey Winter Vegetable Soup

vegetarian winter veg soup

Reprinted from Salon.com

There’s never been a better time to be a half-assed vegetarian. Five years ago, the American Dialect Society honored the word flexitarian for its utility in describing a growing demographic—the “vegetarian who occasionally eats meat.” Now there’s evidence that going flexi is good for the environment and good for your health. A study released last October found that a plant-based diet, augmented with a small amount of dairy and meat, maximizes land-use efficiency. In January, Michael Pollan distilled the entire field of nutritional science into three rules for a healthy diet: “Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.” According to a poll released last week, Americans seem to be listening: Thirteen percent of U.S. adults are “semivegetarian,” meaning they eat meat with fewer than half of all their meals. In comparison, true vegetarians—those who never, ever consume animal flesh—compose just 1 percent.

Yield:  10-12 servings

Ingredients

1/4 cup olive oil

8 ounces crimini mushrooms, halved and sliced

2 medium carrots, finely diced

2 ribs celery, finely diced

1 large onion, finely diced

1 tablespoon kosher salt

One 35-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes

2 teaspoons fresh sage leaves, chopped

1 teaspoon fresh rosemary leaves, chopped

4 cloves garlic, minced

2 1/2 quarts water

3 tablespoons soy sauce

One 2-by-2-inch piece Parmesan rind

7 ounces butternut squash, cubed

5 ounces kale, stems removed and chopped

Two 15-ounce cans great Northern beans, undrained

2 tablespoons red wine vinegar

2 tablespoons honey

Shaved Parmesan, for serving

Directions

Place 2 tablespoons of the olive oil into an 8-quart stockpot over high heat until the oil shimmers. Add the mushrooms and saute until browned, about 5 minutes. Remove the mushrooms from the pan and set aside. Decrease the heat to low, add the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil and the carrots, celery, onions and salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 30 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, sage, rosemary and garlic, and cook for 5 minutes, stirring to break up the tomatoes. Add the water, soy sauce and Parmesan rind, increase the heat to high and bring to a boil, about 15 minutes. Decrease the heat to low, add the squash and kale, cover and cook until tender, 30 to 35 minutes.

Return the mushrooms to the pot along with the beans, honey and red wine vinegar and cook until all is heated through, about 15 minutes. Remove the cheese rind and serve warm with shaved Parmesan.

Serve with hearty whole grain bread and a green salad.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 15 – Chicken, Hunter Style

MB2B27_Chicken_Hunter_Style_lg

Uhh, some of you may have noticed that there was a long weekend-shaped hole between Day 14 and Day 15 of the Romancing the Bee Diet…

I was visiting my daughter Molly and the adorable Baby Lucy in Chicago, and between the pizza, the macarons and the three course luncheon at the American Girl Doll Store, I kind of fell off the Diet Wagon.

I’m back on it though, without sustaining too much damage.  After all, the RTBD should be a joyous way of life, not an exercise in Food Deprivation. 

This Chicken Cacciatore recipe is fabulous, and made it easy for me to return to low Glycemic Index eating. 

Of course, I’ll be madly working to create a recipe for RTBD  macarons to further enhance the RTBD experience!!  🙂

macarons

Yield:  6 servings

Ingredients

2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil

1 (5-6 pound) chicken cut into eighths

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 pound cremini mushrooms, quartered

2 large yellow onions, halved and thinly sliced

1 large yellow bell pepper, thinly julienned

4 ounces thick cut bacon, finely diced

3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced

1/4 teaspoon red chili flakes

1/2 cup dry white wine

1 cup low-sodium canned chicken broth

1 (15-ounce) can diced tomatoes and their juices

1 tablespoon honey

3 sprigs fresh rosemary

2 tablespoons aged balsamic vinegar or capers

3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves

Basil sprigs

Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano

Directions

Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. Season the chicken pieces on both sides with salt and pepper and place in the pan, skin side down and cook until golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the breasts over and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the chicken to a large plate.

Add the remaining oil to the pan and heat until almost smoking. Add the mushrooms and bacon and cook until golden brown, season with salt and pepper and remove to a plate.

Add the onion and bell pepper to the pan and cook until soft, 3 to 4 minutes. Add the garlic and chili flakes to the pan and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the wine and cook until almost completely reduced. Add the chicken stock, tomatoes, honey and rosemary and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken, mushrooms and bacon to the pan, reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the pan and cook until the chicken is tender, about 30 minutes. Remove the chicken with a slotted spoon to a large shallow bowl and tent loosely with foil.

Increase the heat to high and cook the sauce, stirring occasionally, until slightly thickened, 8 to 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper, stir in the vinegar and basil and pour the sauce over the chicken. Garnish with fresh basil sprigs. Sprinkle with grated cheese.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 14 – Veal Parmesan

paleo-chicken-parmesan

 

I created this recipe for one of my most loyal recipe testers!  It’s also great with chicken.

Yield:  serves 4

Ingredients:

8 2-oz. veal cutlets, preferably cut from the top round, pounded to 1⁄8″ thickness

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1  cup almond flour

4 eggs, beaten

8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

3 cups Marinara Sauce (recipe follows)

8 tablespoons parmesan cheese

2 tbsp. chopped curly or flat-leaf parsley

Directions:

Place veal cutlet between two pieces of wax paper or plastic wrap on a wooden cutting board. Pound cutlets to a thickness of 1/8” using a meat mallet or the back of a small skillet. Flipping cutlet over and pounding on both sides will give you the best results. Season pounded cutlet with salt and pepper.

Heat oven to broil and place a rack 10″ from the heating element.

Place flour and eggs in separate shallow dishes. Working with one piece of veal at a time, dredge veal in flour, eggs, and then flour again and transfer to a parchment paper–lined baking sheet.

Heat 2 tbsp. oil in a 12″ skillet over medium-high heat. Add 2 pieces breaded veal and cook, turning once with tongs, until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Transfer veal to an aluminum foil–lined baking sheet. Wipe out skillet and repeat with the remaining oil and veal.

Top each piece of veal with 1⁄3 cup of the marinara sauce and sprinkle with parmesan. Broil until cheese is golden and bubbly, about 2 minutes. Using a spatula, divide the veal parmesan between 4 plates and sprinkle with the parsley.

Marinara Sauce

Ingredients:

1 28-oz. can whole peeled tomatoes

2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil

1 clove garlic, finely chopped

1 bay leaf

1⁄2 small onion, finely chopped

1 tablespoon honey

1⁄2 tsp. dried oregano

1⁄4 tsp. dried thyme

1 tbsp. finely chopped curly or flat-leaf parsley

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions:

Put tomatoes and their liquid into the bowl of a food processor and pulse until coarsely chopped. Set aside.

Heat oil in a 4-qt. saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, bay leaf, and onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onions are translucent, about 10 minutes.

Add the chopped tomatoes along with the honey, oregano and thyme. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce thickens slightly and its flavors come together, about 20 minutes. Stir in parsley and season with salt and pepper.

MAKES ABOUT 3 CUPS

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 9 – Salmon Salad With Honey, Capers And Dill

salmon salad

This is another of my favorite recipes.  The honey glaze on the salmon blends beautifully with the raspberry vinegar!

Yield:  2 to 4 servings

Ingredients:

1 pound , Honey Raspberry Glazed Salmon, chilled

1/2 cup small-diced celery (1 1/2 stalks)

1/4 cup small-diced red onion (1/2 small onion)

1 tablespoon minced fresh dill

1 tablespoon capers, drained

1 tablespoon raspberry vinegar

1 tablespoon good olive oil

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt

1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Directions:

Break the salmon into very large flakes, removing any skin and bones, and place the salmon in a bowl. Add the celery, red onion, dill, capers, raspberry vinegar, olive oil, salt, and pepper. Season, to taste. Mix well and serve cold or at room temperature.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 8 – Honey Raspberry Glazed Salmon

Salmon

When I’m watching what I eat, I don’t want to be cooking all the time.  It’s easier for me to avoid temptation than to resist it!

So I like to make a lot of something and serve it in different ways over a day or two.  After dinner tonight, this salmon will reappear as a salad tomorrow.

Yield: 4 to 6 servings

Ingredients:

1 whole side of salmon, or 4 (6-ounce) salmon fillets

1 tablespoon fine sea salt

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

1/4 teaspoon dry mustard

3 tablespoons honey

1 1/2 tablespoon raspberry balsamic vinegar

Extra virgin olive oil, for brushing salmon

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

If using a side of salmon, cut about halfway through the flesh about every 2 to 3 inches so there are some spaces for the glaze to sink in. If using salmon fillets, slice about 8 to 10 sliced angles into flesh, to help flesh more completely soak in the glaze.

In a small bowl or cup, mix the salt, pepper, and dry mustard.

In a medium glass bowl, heat the honey in the microwave for 30 seconds to liquefy further. Remove from the microwave and mix in raspberry balsamic vinegar.

Brush the both sides of the salmon with olive oil. Season the flesh side with the spice mixture. Brush the flesh generously with the honey-balsamic mixture.

Bake or broil the salmon for 10-15 minutes or until done to taste. Served with roasted brussels sprouts with pine nuts.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 6 – Warm Duck Salad

duck salad

Day 6 and all is well!  It’s over 60 degrees here, and I’m going to get out on my road bike if it doesn’t rain!

If you made roast duck from Day 5, you can use it in this salad. If not, the directions for preparing duck breast is below. Enjoy!

Yield: 1 to 2 servings

Ingredients

1 boneless duck breast, skin on (about 6 to 7 ounces) (or leftover duck from Day 5)

Kosher salt

1/2 tablespoon minced shallots

1 teaspoon honey

1 1/4 tablespoons good sherry vinegar

1/2 teaspoon grated orange zest

2 tablespoons good olive oil

1 head Belgian endive

1 ounce mache or other delicate baby lettuce

Navel orange, peeled, cut in 1/2, and sliced

1/4 pint fresh raspberries

1/2 cup toasted whole pecan halves

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.

Place the duck breast on a sheet pan, skin side up. Sprinkle with salt and roast for about 20 minutes, until medium-rare. Remove from the oven, cover tightly with aluminum foil, and allow to sit for 10 to 15 minutes. Remove and discard the fat and skin on top (unless you’re making cracklings), slice the duck, and then cut the slices crosswise into julienned pieces.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the shallots, honey, sherry vinegar, orange zest, and 3/4 teaspoon of salt. Whisk in the olive oil and set aside.

For the salad, trim the bottom half-inch from the endive and cut them diagonally into 1/2-inch slices. Separate the leaves and discard the cores. Place the slices in a large salad bowl. Add the mache leaves, oranges, raspberries, and toasted pecans. Toss with enough dressing to moisten. Gently toss in the warm duck meat and serve immediately.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day 5 – Honey-Orange Roasted Duckling

roasted orange duck

Day 5 and things are going great! I’ve lost about two pounds and I haven’t felt hungry or deprived. Honey doesn’t push my “eating button” like refined sugar does!

The handy thing is that I can use today’s cooking in tomorrow’s fare. In this case it will be Warm Duck Salad. I’ll use my leftovers, but tomorrow’s recipe assumes you will be cooking duck especially for the salad.

Yield:  4-6 servings

Ingredients:

1 5-lb. duckling

¼ tsp salt

1/8 tsp pepper

1 Tbsp honey

2 Tbsp orange juice

2 Tbsp olive oil

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375F.  Truss duckling and place on a rack over a roasting pan. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast for 1 hour 15 minutes.

Combine honey, orange juice and olive oil. Set aside.

Remove duckling from oven and brush evenly with honey-orange mixture. Pour any that’s left over into the body cavity. Return the duckling to the oven for 15 minutes or until the skin turns a rich golden brown.

Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes.  Serve with steamed non-starchy vegetables.

The Romancing The Bee Diet – Day Two – Grilled Tuna Salad With Avocado and Honey

Fat bee

The Diet is going well!  I haven’t felt a bit deprived and I’ve already lost a pound! I’m pretty sure I could live on Broiled Grapefruit with Honey and Cinnamon.  🙂

I don’t want to get bored, though, so here is another delicious Romancing The Bee Diet recipe. Enjoy!!

Grilled tuna salad

Yield:  2-4 servings

Ingredients

1 pound very fresh tuna steak, 1-inch thick

2 tablespoons olive oil

2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus extra for sprinkling

1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus extra for sprinkling

Grated zest of 1 lime

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

1/2 teaspoon wasabi powder

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon honey

5 dashes Tabasco sauce

1 minced scallion, white and green parts

1 firm, ripe Haas avocado, medium and diced

1/8 cup finely diced red onion

Directions

Brush a heated grill pan with oil. Brush both sides of the tuna with olive oil and sprinkle generously with salt and pepper. Cook the tuna for about 2 1/2 minutes on each side. Remove to a plate. The tuna will be cooked on the outside and raw inside. Allow to cool slightly and cut it into medium-diced pieces.

In a small bowl, whisk together the olive oil, lime zest, lime juice, wasabi powder, honey, soy sauce, Tabasco, 2 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt, and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Add the sauce to the tuna, add the scallion, avocados, and red onion, and mix well. The sauce will “cook” the raw parts of the tuna after it sits for a few minutes.