Monday, July 25, 2011

cheese Adventures: Bocconcini

Today I found a recipe on Giada De Laurentis Food Network site - marinated Bocconcini. What is Bocconcini you ask? It is "little ball" of mozarella cheese. Yet another way of enjoying your cheese!!!!!
so today I went out and picked the fresh herbs out of the garden and made my own homemade Bocconcini. Now, you ask - what am I supposed to do with the cheese once I've made it? Well, that's easy - eat it of course. But if you prefer to use it in a recipe then here you go - it's not mine but it sounds so yummy and with heirloom tomatoes about to be (hopefully) abundantly available - it should be pretty easy to make! Just visit you local grower's market or health food store and buy some yummy heirloom tomatoes and make this lovely salad:

Friday, July 22, 2011

Cheese Adventures Make My Tastebuds SING!

Having an abundance of fresh creamy goat milk means a lot of cheese needs to be made and we can have fun creating new cheesy goodness. I told you all I'd update you on the fun things we made with the cheese rolls (Mozzarella rolled into a sheet, filled and then rolled up and cut like pinwheels. Well, We've made the proscuitto, sundried tomato and basil and few times and I never tire of that one. We've made Italian meats and cheese with Prosciutto and salami as well as artichokes and olives (wasn't my favorite - too salty so I may have to modify the way I make it) The Italian meat was good but my new favorite taste sensation is: Proscuitto, Basil and Fig. Okay - sounds wierd but I was surfing some food blogs and found one about a cheese and fig sandwich with Italian bread and basil/pesto on it and the lightbulb went on......Oh yeah, it's GOOD!
there are of course other fun things to be made with OTHER goat milk products - like yogurt. This is a Tex Mex potato salad that I found on another blog; But modified for my tastebuds. This, my friends is delish! I made it with both sweet potatoes and white potatoes (I think Yukon Gold would have been better but I had none on hand) Chipotle Mayo/yogurt dressing (3 TBSP chipotle with adobo paste, 1 C Mayo, 1 C. Yogurt and 2 TBSP spicy mustard) chopped tomatoes, chopped up cilantro and a chopped up red onion and some garlic(minced). I think I could eat this by myself in one sitting but yeah, probably will have to share at the BBQ.
Lastly, Caprese salad. This has always been one of my favs. What more could you ask for - Fresh Tomatoes from the garden, Fresh Homemade Mozzarella, Fresh Basil from the garden, a Balsamic Vinegar reduction with some cracked pepper to top it all off?UM - NOTHING! I would love to take credit for this lovely dish but I have to give credit where credit is due - Thank you Pioneer Woman Ree Drummond
for sharing this lovely dish on your blog. My tastebuds are singing today - Cheese Adventures ROCK!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

The Cheese Adventure takes a turn for the SWEETER!

The sweet tooth came out today. I was sitting around wondering what to do with some sweet chevre and got an idea - can you make truffles out of chevre. The answer is YES! I found a few recipes online but decided to go my own route. I had already made some Chevre with agave nectar, orange flavoring and orange peels. (about 1 C of Chevre with 1/2 tsp flavoring and 1/2 tsp. dried orange peel).
So I heated up the Milk chocolate I had left over from the Valentine's chocolates I'd made.
And Dipped them. then sprinkled a tiny bit of sea salt on top (if you've never had sea salt with your chocolate - do not knock it till you try it! HEAVENLY!) I think the ONLY thing that could have made these little gems better is having dark chocolate instead of Milk chocolate! OH YEAH! The most amazing part is how easy this was. NOW I'm thinking what yummy flavors one could make with this chevre deal......lavender, peppermint, strawberry, how about a fig, stuffed with sweet chevre, dipped in chocolate! Let the sweet side of cheese adventures.....begin!

Thursday, July 7, 2011

A continuation of the Cheese Adventures

Well, who says I cannot combine my food adventures. Tonight we decided to go on a little journey to France in our culinary adventures and because there is CHEESE involved - yes, it's part of our cheese adventures as well. Tonight is also a vegetarian meal so for those of you doing the veg thing - this one's for you too! First up is Asparagus with bleu cheese and pinon nuts. I'm not sure this is really French but I figure with the Bleu Cheese, why not? EASY to make and the only things I can think of to make this EASY side dish better would be HOME made bleu cheese (maybe someday!) and HOME grown asparagus - again - maybe someday since I planted my first root stock this year. I roasted the asparagus with Olive oil and salt/pepper and then sprinkled pine nuts and bleu cheese on top right toward the end. see - EASY!

Next up is a lovely French Cucumber salad - again easy and oh so yummy. Funny thing is there isn't much difference between this salad and our favorite Cucumber Soup - except maybe a blender. This salad is nothing more than cucumbers, salt, pepper, 1 Tsp lemon juice and 1 C. Greek style yogurt. Also I added some mint leaves chopped up to make it have a bit more zing. YUM! IF you don't like mint leaves I bet you could substitute a myriad of other yummy herbs: lemon thyme, chives, or even dill.
Lastly is my family's favorite cold or hot soup - Potato Leek soup (hot) or Vicchisoise (cold) on a hot summer day - COLD is the way to go. make it early in the morning and refrigerate! After a long hot day, this will hit the spot! It is simple to make: 3 good sized leeks chopped up and washed, then sauteed in EVOO, Then peel and add about 5 - 6 good sized potatoes. Add stock - I used vegetable stock for this but you can use chicken also. Then cook until potatoes are nice and soft. Add Creme Fraische or milk if you don't have CF. Blend and add salt and pepper to taste. We are adding French Bread with Chevre cheese (ooh more french! more cheese!) and pickled beets. I think the only thing this meal is missing is Creme Brulee........