As a young girl, my mother schooled me in the fine art of bow tying. "One should also be able to do it behind one's back." She cooed. A conquered talent which even today gives me great satisfaction. Now, when I'm leaning over the stove I'm confident those behind me view my neatly tied apron with a smile, insuring my wardrobe is in perfect harmony with my food. (Watch the video below, so you can learn, too!)
I know it doesn't matter. No one writes blogs about people who can't tie a perfect bow. Still, it's important to me. And it's important to this recipe.
But before I launch into my first culinary meme, let's talk about what we use to tie bows: The ribbon. A simple adornment, ribbon-weaving is known to have been established near St. Etienne, France in the Loire Valley as early as the 11th century. That means there have been mothers teaching bow-tying for almost a millenia. That makes mentioning it, and basing my recipe upon its sinuous and delicate form, that much more valid.
Enter the carrot. Simple, brightly colored, and tuberously honest. Now, enter the vegetable peeler. Why, beautiful ribbons can now be found everywhere! Their ability to adorn transcending the parlor and dress shop to arrive upon your plate. That's some serious harmony.
You can see the colorful nature of this dish. And because the ribbons of carrots are so thin, it cooks evenly along with the asparagus and the tomatoes, gently yielding to the increasing "poof" of the puff pastry. The result is simply gorgeous. And very, very tasty!
I have a thing about hearing a gasp from guests when I first show them my food, and again when they bite into it. Clearly, dazzling with ribbons is just in my nature. Thanks, Mom. <3
Carrot Ribbon and Asparagus Savory Tart
Serves 4 to 6 / Click here to download printable version.
2 large carrots. You want carrots with girth.
8-10 thin asparagus spears cut into 2” pieces, cut on the angle 8 - 10 small cherry tomatoes, halved
¼ C sweet white onion sliced very thin
½ C grated parmesan cheese
3 -4 T good olive oil
1 ½ t kosher salt
1 t black pepper
Handful of Italian parsley, chopped finely
1 sheet of puff pastry, thawed
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Using a vegetable peeler, create long, wide ribbons of trimmed and peeled carrots until you have about 2 C of ribbons. Add them to a bowl with the asparagus, onion, and tomato. Add 2 T good olive oil and the pepper. Toss.
Using a rolling pin, roll out the just barely thawed square of puff pastry to double its size. About 10” by 20”. Score a 1 inch border around the edge taking care not to cut all the way through. Arrange the vegetables on the puff pastry inside the scored area, evening out the vegetables so it all looks even. Sprinkle with the parmesan cheese. Bake for about 30 minutes or until the crust is lightly golden and good through. You want a good thin crust. When you remove drizzle the remaining 1-2 T of oil on top. Sprinkle with the kosher salt. Sprinkle the parsley on top. Cut and serve.
©Recipe and Photo Copyright Camine Pappas, 2018. All rights reserved.
PLUS 4 delicious munchy recipes for game day...
As I write this post our belongings are still in storage. I sometimes dream about my pans, platters and slow cooker with a sense of deep longing. My dreams are about spring-form pans and spatulas, not pigskins or shoulder pads. I can't wait for the day when I can unpack my tools, lovingly roll them around in my palm, touch each curve and heat resistant handle, and make friends with them again.
But today I must focus on the game. The Super Bowl, that is. And I have some thoughts about what all those words mean. Clearly something is lost in translation. And since everything is about food for me, I thought I share not only a few game day recipes, but also my interpretation of football terms.
So while watching the #newenglandpatriots and the #philidelphiaeagles try to avoid the tackle, I'm tackling some fun food. And for fun, here are some football terms I really think should belong to someone wearing an apron instead of a wearing a helmet. Don't you agree?
(If you're looking for all football terms, click here!)
Of course the first is -- Super bowl: The receptacle that I place deliciousness in, so I can impress my guests at mega dinner parties. It is most likely too big for the dishwasher.
Scoop and score: That moment when peel your bread dough out of the bowl in one handful after rising and it is perfect in every way. (see photos above for clarification.)
Failed pass attempt: What happens when I carelessly toss eggshells from a distance into the trash, because I'm too lazy to walk them over 3 more feet. No first down for me.
Completion percentage: How I rate the success of my souffle-making prowess if one doesn't fall when removed from the oven. Hint. Mine is rising steadily. Heheheh...
Direct snap: The sound made when you crack the wrong bone while cutting up a whole chicken. And the sound you make when your head explodes because now both legs have been ruined.
Field goal: The best green salad ever!!!
Hash marks: Duh...those little criss cross indentations I place across each peanut butter cookie before baking them.
And finally -- Icing the kicker: Clearly they left out a word. Icing "is" the kicker when you make sugar cookies and know there's still something missing. #iwishthenflcouldspell
In spite of your horror at reading my glossary of confusing football terms, I present a few of my FAVORITE football foods for your culinary line of scrimmage!!!
Artichoke Spinach Dip Bruschetta With Seared Sweet Pepper
Creamy and just a little heat, the addition of seared peppers makes it different and beautiful!
Click here to download printable version.
1 small radius loaf of good French bread, sliced into quarter inch slices and toasted on each side under broiler
1 5.3 oz. container Greek yogurt
1 can small artichoke hearts, drained thoroughly, and chopped
1 C finely grated fresh Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
2 heaping T mayonnaise
1/8 t thyme leaves
1/8 t rosemary leaves
½ t crushed red pepper flakes
½ C cooked spinach, all moisture pressed out, chopped
3 1/8” slices of white onion, diced small
Juice from one lemon divided into 1 teaspoon and 2 teaspoons
1 large orange sweet pepper cut into long strips
1 T canola oil
1 T red wine vinegar
1/8 t allspice
Toast bread, set aside. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
In a large fry pan, heat the 1 T oil. Add the peppers and let sear on high heat. When there is charring on the peppers and they become a bit soft, add a bit of salt, and black pepper, then the lemon juice (first) and then the vinegar. Then sprinkle lightly with allspice. Let cook until lemon juice is reduced. Remove from pan and let cool in a bowl.
In another large bowl, combine yogurt, artichoke hearts, spinach, cheese, mayo, herbs, lemon juice, onion, red pepper flakes, and black pepper, (you don’t really need a lot of extra salt, as the parmesan cheese is salty, as are the chokes.) Add more mayo if it needs to be more moist. It should be VERY gooey and moist. Combine. Place all ingredients in a small casserole dish. Cook for 35 to 40 minutes, until edges are brown. Serve by spreading warm dip on bread and then topping with cool orange pepper slice.
Chicken Salad and Fig Wraps
Finger food gets elevated, and what could be quicker! Either home made or store-bought chicken salad in slathered on your favorite tortilla or wrap, add soft sliced figs, and for fun, a little honey and arugula. YUM.
Goat Cheese Stuffed Baked Jalapeno Bites
Awww, they even have their own little handles! And handy they are. A simple vinaigrette with oil, lemon juice, salt pepper and mustard, along with fresh scallions and garlic are gently ladled on roasted jalapeno halves. Then stuff them with goat cheese, top with a cherry tomato, and dust with fresh thyme.
Take that to the end zone!
Sausage Spinach Puff Pastry Wheels
Watch my short video about getting comfy in the kitchen.
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Meet the Cook...
My name is Camine Pappas and I love to create beautiful and delicious food that anyone can make. My signature style centers around a love for combining things in a way you might not expect as I work to find a hidden combination of colors, textures and flavors from the things that are in my pantry and/or easy to obtain.