Veal Piccata with Cavatelli

Slice 2 small zucchinis lengthwise, cutting off ends. Place in a baking pan, peel side down. Drizzle with olive oil. Spread a pinch of cayenne on each. Place in the oven until it reaches 400 degrees. Then, broil until crisp on top. Remove from oven.

When cool, cut zucchini into small chunks. Finely chop 1/2 cup sun-dried tomatoes.

In a large non-stick fry pan, heat a thin coat of olive oil on high heat. Quickly brown milk-fed veal cutlets, pounded to about 1/4″, on each side. Do it in stages so they don’t touch. Sprinkle with ground pepper and garlic powder.

Remove to a plate after each stage.

In the same pan with leftover drippings, brown a minced shallot. Add a couple pats of butter. Deglaze with 1/4 cup dry white wine. Add juice of 2 lemons and 1/3 cup capers. Stir. Turn off heat.

In a large pot, add fresh cavatelli to boiling water. After water comes to a full boil again, cook for 5 minutes until tender. Drain.

Bring fry pan back to high heat and place veal cutlets and juices back into the sauce until just heated.

Serve with shallot, lemon, caper sauce over cavatelli topped with zucchini and sun-dried tomatoes.

Sprinkle with romano-parmesan grated cheese.

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Cod with Yogurt Dill Sauce

Serves 2.

In a small bowl, whisk together 1 cup plain yogurt, 3 tbs. crushed dill weed, juice of 1/2 lemon, ground white pepper to taste. Cover and refrigerate for an hour or more.

When ready to cook, bring sauce to room temperature.

Sprinkle Spanish paprika on both sides of a 1 lb. cod filet.

Sauté the filet in a fry pan in a little olive oil and butter. Quickly brown on each side, so moist and not overcooked.

Remove from skillet and spoon sauce over cod.

Serve with rice and fresh asparagus vinaigrette.

Serves 2.

Lemon Sole

A flat fish native to Northern Europe. It is neither truly sole, nor lemon-flavored. The name is a French derivative which describes the outer scales of the fish and its shallow waters habitat.

Since filets are thin, it cooks very quickly. A cartilage spine splits it and small bones need to be removed. Cut the fish away from the spine to form the 2 filets.

Serves 2.

Season with crushed white pepper.

In a non-stick fry pan, melt 3 tbs. butter and add capers to taste.

Place filets in pan and on medium high heat sauté for 2 minutes on each side, basting with the butter sauce.

Turn off heat and add juice of 1 lemon.

Serve filets with the butter caper lemon sauce. Rice and a veg.

Seared Swordfish Steaks

Serves 2.

Pat dry 2 swordfish steaks and place in a hot non-stick fry pan, no oil.

Sear 2-3 minutes on each side depending on thickness to achieve a golden color. Remove from pan to a plate.

Turn heat to medium. Add 3 tbs. olive oil, 4-6 sliced green onions/scallions, 4 tbs. capers, 4 tbs. balsamic vinegar, 2 large pats of butter. Sauté for 1 minute.

Add 1 cup dry white wine. Increase heat to medium, stir and reduce by half.

Adjust vinegar for balance and taste.

Place swordfish in the sauce and turn for 30 seconds on each side to heat.

Plate steaks and ladel sauce on top.

Fresh Pasta Mozzarella

Access to fresh pasta has rekindled a preference for it when possible. It is different, lighter and a bit stickier which makes sauces adhere better. It cooks much faster 2-3 minutes. No. I won’t go as far as to make it from scratch.

In a non-stick fry pan, heat a little olive oil. Add hot pepper flakes and fresh chopped parsley. Add fresh chopped mushrooms. Brown.

Add par-boiled asparagus pieces and brown. Or broccoli.

Season with dried oregano, basil to taste.

Add a couple pats of butter and heat to finish.

Meanwhile, in a separate pot, boil water and cook fresh pasta, 2-3 minutes. Drain.

Toss in small fresh mozzarella balls.

Serve covered with vegetable sauce.

Top with grated romano/parmesan mix and lemon zest.

Radicchio Anchovy Braise

Best side dish I’ve made in a while. Serves 2.

In a non-stick fry pan, heat oil from jar of Sicilian anchovies.

Add wedges of a fresh radicchio and brown.

Add 6-7 of the Sicilian anchovy fillets from the jar, minced.

Pour in 1/2 cup chicken broth, bring to boil. Cover and simmer for 8 minutes.

Add another cup chicken broth and 1 cup fresh pasta. Cover and boil 2-3 minutes.

Stir to make sure pasta is separated. When pasta is cooked and tender, uncover and heat for another 2 minutes.

Serve pasta and braised radicchio and broth in large bowls.

Drizzle with balsamic vinegar.

Garnish with anchovy fillets to taste and grated parmesan/romano cheese.

Should be brothy and anchovy taste subtle.

Astice di Natale

CHRISTMAS LOBSTER PASTA

lobster-pasta

Christmas Eve. After decades of Lobster Newburg, no such sauce to be found in Manhattan. So. A new recipe. Lobster in a butter sauce over fresh pasta.

1/4 lb. cooked lobster meat from Citarella per person. More is fine.

Serves 8+.

In a large stock pot on medium high, heat 2 – 3 lbs. lobster meat in 1 lb. melted butter, juice of 2 lemons. Add cracked pepper to taste.

Serve over fresh pasta.

Garnish with diced sun-dried tomatoes, whole capers, and dried basil.

Buon Natale!

 

Note: Aragosta v. Astice. It looks like a New England lobster is astice. A warm water langouste appears more aragosta.

Holiday Shrimp Fra Diavolo

After you’ve trimmed the tree, it’s time for a hearty reward.

Serves 2.

Shell, clean 6-8 large shrimp per person.

Pat dry and set aside in a bowl.

In a large deep fry pan, heat 1 jar Rao’s or Citarella Arrabbiata sauce.

Add 1/2 cup dry red wine, 1/4 tsp. cayenne, pepperoncini flakes and dried oregano to taste. Stir.

Add shrimp to the sauce and cook on medium heat to keep a low boil until done, about 6 minutes.

Serve over favorite pasta.

Top with spicy fresh mozzarella balls, basil leaves and lemon zest.

 

You can use any tomato sauce, just add more pepperoncini flakes than you would for Arrabbiata. It’s meant to be spicy hot. Il diavolo!

Vitello Balsamico

veal-chopsSautéed Veal Chops with Balsamic & Thyme

 

Bring 1″ veal rib chops to room temperature. Pat dry.

Season on both sides with ground black pepper, garlic powder, dried thyme, sea salt to taste.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

 

On the stovetop, heat a dry sauté pan until hot. Place chops into pan and sear on both sides for 4 minutes each side until carmelized.

Place pan with carmelized chops into the preheated 400-degree oven and bake for additional 4-5 minutes, depending on preference for medium-rare to medium.

Remove pan from oven. Place chops on plate to rest for 5 minutes.

On the stovetop, under low heat, place 3 tbs. butter into the original sauté pan with veal drippings, and add 3 tbs. Fini or best Balsamic vinegar to deglaze for a sauce. Scrape and stir to incorporate all drippings.

Serve chops drizzled with sauce, roasted fingerling potatoes and string beans. Serves 2.

 

la-crema-pinot-noir

La Crema 2014 Pinot Noir from Willamette Valley, Oregon.

Scallops w/ Pancetta

In a fry pan, crisp up pancetta cut into small pieces to taste. Remove to a paper towel on a dish. Serves generous 2.

In the same pan sear 12-16 sea scallops in the pancetta drippings and if necessary a little olive oil. 3 minutes on each side. Scallops should not be touching and will be golden brown on both sides and opaque in the middle. Do not overcook.

Season with cracked brown pepper.

Add a few julienned sun-dried tomatoes to the pan with minced garlic and melt a pat of butter to finish.

Serve scallops, sun-dried tomatoes and butter-garlic sauce over pasta and garnish with the pancetta.