Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Cucumber & Carrot Salad

Cucumber season has arrived in the Edible Garden. Horticulturists selected ‘Suyo Long’ and ‘Ellen’s Family White’ Cucumbers this year. The ‘Suyo Long’ Cucumber tends to curl when it touches the ground, so the vines are supported by trellises. This also keeps the fruit clean and saves space.

Garden Chef Christina Curry brightens up this cucumber salad with Thai basil. Mint would also do the job.

Cucumber & Carrot Salad

1 medium cucumber, thinly sliced
1 small carrot, julienne
2 T Thai basil, chopped
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
2 T mirin
2 T soy sauce
3 T grapeseed oil
sesame seeds (black or white), to garnish

In a medium bowl, combine the cucumber, carrot, and Thai basil. In a small bowl, whisk together the rice wine vinegar, mirin, soy sauce, and grapeseed oil. Pour the dressing over the vegetables and toss together. Garnish with sesame seeds.

Recipe by Garden Chef Christina Curry

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Monday, June 18, 2012

Wild Smoked Salmon Endive Boats

Atlanta Botanical Garden Chef Megan McCarthy whipped up another winner this past Thursday at Cocktails in the Garden.  She paired buttery Wild Alaskan Sockeye Salmon with creamy Neufchâtel cheese and served the delectable mixture on a Belgian endive leaf.

Garden Chef Megan recommends reserving some of the salmon to fold into the mixture at the end. This will add visual interest as well as texture to your dish. Another tip, if you have trouble finding micro greens use baby watercress for that finishing touch. Other party-worthy serving options are sliced cucumbers, crackers and a topping of caviar for an extraordinary treat. Enjoy!

Wild Smoked Salmon Endive Boats

4 oz Wild Alaska Sockeye Smoked Salmon, small dice
6 oz Neufchâtel cheese (farmer cheese)
zest and juice of 1 small lemon
¼ cup red onion, small dice
2 T capers
fresh cracked black pepper, to taste
2 heads Belgian endive
micro greens, to garnish

Dice smoked salmon into small pieces.  In food processor, combine 2 tablespoons smoked salmon with Neufchâtel cheese, lemon zest and lemon juice and pulse until combined.  Transfer mixture to large bowl and add remaining diced smoked salmon, red onion, and capers.  Gently fold ingredients together until combined and season with fresh cracked black pepper to taste.  Spoon salmon mixture onto Belgian endive leaves and garnish with micro greens to serve.

Recipe by Garden Chef Megan McCarthy

Friday, June 15, 2012

Zucchini “Pasta” with Lemon Ginger Macadamia Nut Oil Vinaigrette

‘Ronde de Nice’ Zucchini from the Edible Garden replace traditional noodles for this pasta-like dish.  ‘Ronde de Nice’ Zucchini is round and has a milder flavor than the longer, common zucchini of grocery stores.  Zucchini is full of potassium and an excellent source of folate.

Garden Chef Megan McCarthy demonstrated how to use a grater to shred the zucchini or a food processor to get the job done fast.  She added carrots for color and suggested trying shredded red cabbage or radicchio for an even more colorful “pasta.”

Zucchini “Pasta” 
with Lemon Ginger Macadamia Nut Oil Vinaigrette

2 cups zucchini, shredded
¼ cup carrots, shredded
1 lemon, zested and juiced
1 tsp raw cane sugar
¼ tsp powdered ginger
1/8 tsp sea salt
black pepper, to taste
2 T macadamia nut oil
1-2 sweet mini peppers, sliced or diced

In food processor, shred 1-2 zucchinis and 1 carrot and set aside in a large mixing bowl.  In small bowl, whisk together lemon zest, lemon juice, cane sugar, ginger, salt, and pepper.  Slowly add macadamia nut oil while continuing to whisk vinaigrette.  Drizzle vinaigrette over shredded zucchini and carrots and gently toss.  Garnish with sweet mini peppers.

Recipe by Garden Chef Megan McCarthy

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Summer Crab Salad

Garden Chef Megan McCarthy had a real treat for the Cocktails in the Garden visitors.  She demonstrated a simple and quick summer crab salad made with juicy pineapple, red onion, avocado, and fresh squeezed lemon juice.  This dish is perfect for a summer lunch - no stove required!  Enjoy!

Summer Crab Salad

8 oz lump crab
2 tsp fresh lemon juice
1 avocado, diced
½ cup fresh pineapple, diced
½ cup red onion, diced
1 T avocado oil
salt and pepper, to taste
1 head butter lettuce

In mixing bowl, add lemon juice to lump crab meat and toss.  Add in avocado, pineapple, red onion and drizzle with avocado oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.  Gently toss until combined.  Serve crab salad in butter lettuce cups. 

Recipe by Garden Chef Megan McCarthy

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Friday, June 8, 2012

Roasted Beets with Almond Orange Vinaigrette

Beets are great for heart health, lowering cholesterol, and anti-aging.  These ‘Bull’s Blood’ Beets were harvested from the Edible Garden and roasted in the Outdoor Kitchen.  Can’t get any fresher than that!

Garden Chef Megan McCarthy lets roasted beets shine in this salad.  Served on a leaf of butter lettuce, it’s almost too pretty to eat.  Almost…

Roasted Beets with Almond Orange Vinaigrette

4 beets, washed and trimmed
3 T roasted almond oil
2 T blood orange vinegar
1 T orange juice
salt and pepper, to taste
1 tsp orange zest
1 T fresh parsley, minced

Preheat oven to 400◦.  Trim and rinse beets.  Place beets in foil, drizzle 2 tablespoons roasted almond oil and fold foil to close.  Place in oven on a baking sheet and roast for 1 hour or until tender.  Let cool.  Peel beets under cold water.  Cut peeled beets into small wedges and place in medium bowl.

In small bowl, whisk together 1 tablespoon roasted almond oil, blood orange vinegar, orange juice, salt and pepper.  Drizzle beets with vinaigrette and toss.  Add orange zest and parsley and toss again.  Serve as a side or a starter salad.

Friday, June 1, 2012

Sesame Roasted Broccoli with Mixed Greens

Broccoli ‘Beaumont’ was planted in the Edible Garden in February and ready for harvest in May.  The Horticulturists pulled the broccoli before the heat set in here at the Atlanta Botanical Garden. 

Garden Chef Christina Curry’s recipe (below) has directions for roasting broccoli in the oven.  For her cooking demos, Christina took advantage of the large grill in the Outdoor Kitchen by wrapping the broccoli in foil packets and cooking directly on the grill.  Throw your favorite protein on the other side of the grill and you’ll have dinner in no time!

Sesame Roasted Broccoli with Mixed Greens

1 lb broccoli florets
1 T ginger, chopped
2 tsp garlic, chopped
1/3 cup sesame oil
3 T soy sauce
1 tsp chili garlic sauce
1 T honey
6 oz mixed greens
carrots, julienne
salt & pepper, to taste
black & white sesame seeds, to garnish

In a medium bowl, combine the broccoli, ginger, garlic, and 2 tablespoons of sesame oil.  Toss together and transfer to a foil or parchment lined baking sheet, season with salt and pepper.  Roast in a 400º oven for 8 to 10 minutes.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool for a bit.   In the same bowl, add the soy sauce, garlic chili sauce, honey and remaining sesame oil.  Whisk together and immediately add the mixed greens and carrots.  Add the broccoli and lightly toss.  Garnish with sesame seeds.

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