I’m back with more recipes from my “Eating Ohio” series. A food whirlwind of pasta, crab cakes, pork loin and more…stay tuned for other recipes to come!
Crab Cakes with Homemade Remoulade
(with Corn Bread with warm Honey Butter)
These crab cakes were AMAZING; I baked rather than fried them, and honestly, there was no difference in flavor or texture. I pretty much followed Ellie Krieger’s recipe to a T, except for swapping out regular bread crumbs for panko bread crumbs; and they were delightful. I used Sandra Lee’s recipe for Cajun remoulade. Also excellent!
Cornbread with Honey Butter
This was a snap!
– I baked two packages of Martha White’s cornbread mix according to the package direction.
– I then softened 1/2 stick of butter in a small pot on the stove and stirred in two heaping tablespoons of honey until melted and well-combined with the butter. While the cornbread was still warm, I drizzled the melted honey butter over the pan. Easy!
Next up was an Italian feast!
This can be as simple or extravagant as you’d like. The one I made was fairly straight-forward with meats, cheeses, olives and artichokes, but as you saw from my friend Nandrea’s on Thanksgiving……
…… it can be more elaborate with hard-boiled eggs, Italian tuna, multiple cheeses and meats.
(because the ingredients are the stars here; buy the very best you can)
MEATS: 1/4 lb each: Salami, Prosciutto (optional: Pepperoni, Capicola, Italian canned Tuna in oil, Hard-Boiled eggs, Sardines)
CHEESES: 1 Fresh Mozzarella Ball (optional: 1/4lb Provolone, 1/4lb Parmesan on the rind) EXTRAS: Sundried Tomatoes, Artichoke Hearts, Assorted Olives (optional: Roasted Garlic Cloves, Prosciutto & Provolone stuffed Vinegar Peppers , Roasted Red Pepper or Pepperoncinis)
SERVE WITH: Fresh crispy lettuce, Italian bread, Rustic Crackers, Fresh Veggie slices
TOP WITH: Have a Pepper Grinder, Balsamic or Red Wine Vinegar and Good Quality Olive Oil out for people to top their creations with.
Assemble ingredients neatly in slices or rows to show them off (or set out neatly atop a bed of crisp lettuce so people can serve themselves salad-style). Servings vary on ingredient amounts.
Next up in tour de Italia
Mushroom, Pancetta & Proscuitto Risotto
adapted from The Barefoot Contessa
3 tbs butter
1 clove of garlic
2 shallots, chopped fine
1/4lb pancetta and 1/4lb proscuitto, chopped
1 container white button mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1 box (8 servings) of Arborio rice
1/2 cup white wine
2 boxes of chicken stock, room temp or heated
4 oz shredded Parmesan cheese
Set a deep, heavy saucepan (now’s the time to bust out those le creuset Christmas gifts), over medium heat. Melt butter, add garlic and shallots, salt and pepper. Once sautéed (after about 3-4 minutes), add pancetta and proscuitto. Cook together for another 3-4 minutes. Add mushroom. Mushrooms will take a few minutes to cook down (and will release quite a bit of water); just keep stirring together. Add rice, stir throughly to coat with the mixture. Add white wine and continue to stir for about 2 minutes until the alcohol burns off (you can usually smell when the alcohol has burned off because all that’s left is aroma).
Start slowing adding chicken stock, one cup at a time. Now, here’s why risotto is a special-occasion meal. You stand there and stir. And stir. And stir some more. You are letting the rice cook, and release all its yummy starch which gives the risotto that creamy, not gummy texture. Continue the one-cup-of-stock-and-stir motion for the next 35 minutes as the rice absorbs the liquid, add more. The rice should be creamy, rich, but still have a bite to it. Once the rice is cooked, stir in parmesan cheese and serve immediately with more cheese for sprinkling and freshly cracked pepper. Serves 8.