Organics 101: Garden Luncheon

Celebrating Earth Day.
Celebrating Organics.  Pure.  Pristine.
Impeccable panache for spring occasions.
Garden parties. Showers.  Wedding agenda.
Enjoy the Menu Shoppe finds…
enjoy the green goodness.
Organic Carrot Soup with Ginger Essence
Rose Petal Salad with Parsley and Mint
Millet Muffins with Honey-Pecan Butter
Ginger Risotto
White Chocolate and Cardamom Rice Pudding
Elegant as a small plate or amuse bouche.
Organic Carrot Soup with Ginger Essence
2 1/2 pounds organic carrots, chopped
1 cup fresh carrot juice
1 cup thinly sliced leeks (white part only)
1/2 large white onion, diced (about 1 cup)
1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups vegetable stock
1 tablespoon chopped fresh lemongrass (or 2 teaspoons dried, tied in a piece of cheesecloth)
3 1/2 teaspoons minced fresh ginger
1/2 cup light sour cream, plus 4 tsp for garnish
Coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chopped chives
Heat oil in a heavy-bottomed large stockpot on high heat until hot. Cook leeks and onion 2 to 3 minutes. Add carrots and 2 tbsp water. Cook, covered, 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add stock, lemongrass and 1 1/2 teaspoons ginger. Simmer about 30 minutes. Let mixture cool for 10 minutes, then pour into a food processor and purée. Add carrot juice and strain through a fine-mesh sieve. Discard pulp. (If not serving immediately, cool and refrigerate liquid.) Add sour cream and remaining 2 teaspoons ginger to strained liquid. Stir until completely incorporated. Heat 3 or 4 minutes over medium-low heat or serve cold. Season with pepper. Divide among 4 bowls. Garnish with chives and 1 tsp each sour cream.
Rose Petal Salad with Parsley and Mint
1 medium-size organic rose
3 tbsp. vegetable oil
1 tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1 bunch of parsley
1 bunch of mint
1 head of romaine lettuce
Gently pull the petals off rose, then cut off and discard the white bases from the petals and set the petals aside. Put oil, lemon juice, and salt to taste into a large bowl and whisk until well combined. Pick the leaves off parsley and mint and put them into the bowl of dressing. Trim and pull the leaves off lettuce. Wash and dry the leaves, thickly slice them, and transfer them to the bowl of dressing and herbs. Toss to coat well and transfer to a serving platter. Trim with rose petals and serve.
Millet Muffins with Honey-Pecan Butter
For the muffins:
2/3 cup uncooked millet
3/4 cup packed brown sugar
1 large egg
1 cup fat-free buttermilk
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Cooking spray
For the buttery spread:
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons finely chopped pecans, toasted
1 tablespoon organic honey
Preheat oven to 375°F.
To prepare muffins: place millet in a spice or coffee grinder–pulse 6 times or until lightly crushed. Set aside. Place sugar and egg in a large bowl–beat with a mixer at medium speed until well combined. Stir in millet, buttermilk, and 1/4 cup butter. Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups–level with a knife. Combine flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk. Make a well in center of mixture.
Add buttermilk mixture–stir just until moist. Let batter stand 5 minutes. Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake at 375°F for
18 minutes or until muffins spring back when touched lightly in center. Cool in pan 5 minutes on a wire rack. Remove muffins from pan–place on wire rack.
To prepare butter: combine 2 tablespoons butter, pecans, and honey, stirring well to combine. Serve with the muffins.
NOTE: If using paper muffin cup liners, coat with cooking spray before filling with batter. Make the muffins up to 2 days ahead, the butter up to 5 days in advance.
Here’s an elegant risotto…even more elegant as small plate or risotto cake.
Ginger Risotto
7 cups chicken stock
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 medium white onion, finely diced
(about 1 1/2 cups)
1 tablespoon plus 2 teaspoons grated ginger
1 1/2 cups Arborio rice
1 cup white wine
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly cracked pepper to taste
Bring the stock to a simmer in a medium pot and keep it at a simmer until the risotto is done. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and 1 tablespoon of the ginger and cook, stirring constantly, for 2 to 3 minutes, until the onion is translucent. Add the rice and stir. Stir in the wine and simmer until the liquid is evaporated. Begin adding stock, one ladleful at a time, stirring constantly until the liquid is absorbed. Continue adding stock until the rice is cooked but still firm and creamy,
30 to 35 minutes. Turn off the heat. Add the butter, the remaining 2 teaspoons of ginger, and the Parmesan. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.
Elegance circa classic English gardens…
White Chocolate and Cardamom Rice Pudding with Marmalade and Cointreau Sauce
For the rice pudding:
1/2 cup short grain rice
1/3 cup golden baker’s sugar
1 1/3 cups 1% milk
1/2 cup half-and-half
3 whole cardamom pods, seeds removed and ground to a powder
3 1/2 oz white chocolate, grated
For the sauce:
1/3 cup marmalade
1/3 cup Cointreau
Place the rice and sugar into a medium saucepan, then pour in the milk and half-and-half. Add the cardamom powder. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until the rice is swollen and tender. Add a little hot water if it’s looking a little dry. Remove from the heat and stir in the grated white chocolate. Cover the pan and set aside. To make the sauce, combine the marmalade with the Cointreau and heat gently in a pan. Divide the rice pudding between four bowls and drizzle with the sauce.
If wished, serve with trimmings of  a few white chocolate shavings.
If it’s on the menu…the Menu Shoppe has it covered.
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This entry was posted in appetizer, brunch, desserts, luncheon, presentation, risotto, salads, small plates, soups and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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