Saturday, April 3, 2010

easter brunch...

it's a gorgeous day today.  i am off to the grocery store to pick up what i need to prepare my contribution to the easter brunch at my sister's house.
what happens when you take cool crisp butter lettuce top it with honeyed walnuts, fried prosciutto, snap peas, sliced brie, and drizzle a piping hot raspberry dressing over the top? why, pure magic, that's what. this salad combines the best flavors of a budding spring--fresh greens and tender peas--with the comforting flavors and textures of salty prosciuttio and smooth, melty brie cheese. I love it.  i hope you do, too.
i feel terrible that i can't remember the source of the following recipes.

honey sweetened walnuts
1/2 c. raw walnut halves
1 T. honey
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. garlic salt

 in a small, non-stick saucepan, heat all ingredients over medium heat and bring to a simmer, stirring constantly. cook until the honey begins to caramelized and thicken on the walnuts, about 3-5 minutes. transfer to parchment paper and allow to cool.

warm spring salad
5-6 c. butter lettuce, mache or spring greens
4-5 slices prosciutto, cut in strips and flash fried in hot olive oil
1/2 c. snap peas, diced
3 clementines, peeled and sliced thin
6 oz. brie with rind, sliced thin
1/2 c. honey sweetened walnuts

tangy raspberry dressing
1 c. raspberries
1/4 c. honey
1 1/2 T. country dijon mustard
2 T. olive oil
1 T. jalapeno jelly (optional)

in a small saucepan, crush raspberries (I used frozen). add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. drizzle hot dressing over salad.

tart crust. or use pillsbury crust

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
5 tablespoons butter, cold and cut into small slices
3 to 4 tablespoons ice cold water
mix together the flour and salt in a mixing bowl. cut in the butter with a pastry cutter or a fork until the mixture forms pea-sized pieces.
sprinkle 2 tablespoons of water over the flour mixture and toss with fork until moistened. repeat with the remaining water, one tablespoon at a time and gather the dough into a ball with your hand. do not handle the dough too long.
wrap into a sheet of plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. this will allow the dough to relax and make it easier to roll, keeping it from becoming tough.
roll dough on a lightly floured surface, applying pressure from the center to the edges until it is about 12 inches in diameter. cut out six 4 inch circles onto the dough and press them into the tart pans (or one 9 inch pan if making a larger tart). refrigerate while you prepare the filling

leek and mushroom tart
1 1/4 cup leeks, quartered and chopped
1/4 cup red onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
5 ounces mushrooms, thinly sliced
1/4 cup fresh parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon fresh tarragon, chopped
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
3/4 cup milk
3/4 cup half and half
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
3 eggs
4 ounces gruyere cheese, grated
6 mini tart pans lined with tart crust, recipe below

preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
swirl a medium sized saute pan with a bit of olive oil, about 2 teaspoons. heat over medium high heat until sizzling. add the leeks, onion, and garlic and saute for about 2 minutes. add the mushrooms and saute about 3 minutes more. remove from heat and stir in the parsley and tarragon. divide evenly among the 6 tart crusts and set aside.

combine the salt, pepper, milk, half and half, dijon mustard, and eggs. beat until combined evenly. divide the egg mixture evenly among the 6 tarts and top with grated cheese. Place tarts on a cookie sheet (in case of spills) and bake for 20-30 minutes. cool before removing from pan and serving.

sunshine nectar.

4 parts chilled white zinfandel (for non-alcoholic, kid friendly use FreWines)
2 parts peach nectar
1 part freshly squeeze orange juice
raspberries, fresh or frozen, to garnish drinks

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Easter blessings to all of you and big Easter hugs..enjoy the day and the love of everyone around you