Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Cataplana, perfect for Summer nights!

Picture from
Cataplana is a Portuguese seafood dish, popular on the country's Algarve coast. It is also the name of the special cookware used to prepare the dish, which is traditionally made of copper and shaped like two clamshells hinged at one end and able to be sealed using a clamp on either side of the assembly.  If you do not have a dish do not worry, you can use a heavy sauce pan with a lid.  The great part of this dish is you can prep everything ahead of time and just through the items together.

Cataplana Recipe

Ingredients: (6 servings)

    3 medium Spanish onions thinly sliced
    3 cloves of crushed garlic
    2 green bell peppers cut into small strips
    Olive oil
    1 bay leaf
    1 lb tinned plum tomatoes
    1/4 lb smoked ham, diced
    2 oz. prosciutto ham, diced
    1/4 lb portuguese sausage (or any other chorizo style sausage)
    Small glass dry white wine
    3 lb / 4 dozen fresh small clams in the shell, rinsed.
    Some fresh parsley, coarsely chopped
    Paprika / and or ground chili pepper

How to Cook:

    The sauce - Cook the onions, garlic, and green peppers in the olive oil over a gentle heat until onions are golden. Add the bay leaf and the tomatoes, but preserve a quarter of their juice. Bring to 'simmering', then cover and drop the heat to enable the sauce to cook slowly for 30 minutes. Then add the remaining tomato juice, the prosciutto, the smoked ham, and the chorizo. Cover and cook for another 30 minutes. Season with paprika or chili pepper
    The Cataplana Dish: Spoon half the sauce into the bottom of the cataplana (or a similar style heavy pan with a lid), then lay the clams on top. Add the remaining sauce and the wine, cover tightly, cook for 15 minutes over a gentle heat, AND DO NOT LIFT THE LID! Add parsley to decorate.
    The 'Cataplana' should be brought to the table and served directly onto the plates. Eat with fresh bread and leave a bowl for the discarded clam shells. Cataplana recipes change from region to region and in Western Algarve the locals sometimes like to add potatoes and / or shrimps and mussels to the dish. Whatever you fancy!
Thursday, July 21, 2011

Star Launches new product with Save Mart at CA State Fair

Star Fine Foods is launching an exciting new product this Friday, July 21st, at 1:pm, at the CA State Fair in the Expo Center Exhibits, in Expo center #2, in the Save Mart Supermarkets California Foodstyle Expo Hall.

Beat the heat and visit the air-conditioned buildings of Expo Center, at this fast-paced, fun and educational venue is where fairgoers can sample some of the best dishes in California. “Foodies” will love this building featuring  daily cooking demonstrations. Sponsored by Save Mart Supermarkets.

Star Fine Foods will be doing Olive Oil tastings, sampling our new product and handing out recipe books.  See you there!
Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Want to bake healthier? Use Olive oil instead of Butter!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Answers to "Test your Kosher Knowledge quiz"

All olive oils are kosher.:

All foods that are natural are considered kosher.:

In addition to a picture symbol, most kosher food products will be accompanied by a letter. What letter is it?:
P for Passover
D for Dairy
M for Meat
Any of the above

Of the 10.5 million Americans who eat kosher products, only 20 percent are Jewish.:
Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sautéed Summer Vegetables With Goat Cheese

 Looking for a  way to eat all those great Summer vegetables?  This recipe uses them all!
Yield: 4 to 6 servings
 Photo by Emily Rasinski

2 tablespoons STAR extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 small red bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 small green bell pepper, sliced into thin strips
1 to 2 cups seasonal vegetables (such as corn, tomatoes and/or green beans; see note)
1 medium zucchini, coarsely grated
1 medium yellow summer squash, coarsely grated
Ground black pepper
4 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
1/4 cup loosely packed fresh basil leaves
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, optional

1. Warm olive oil in a 10- or 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add garlic; reduce heat to low. Cook for 6 to 8 minutes, stirring as needed, until garlic is soft and fragrant but not browned.

2. Raise heat to medium. Add peppers and stir to coat. Cook for 2 minutes, stirring often. Stir in seasonal vegetables; cook for 1 to 2 minutes. Mix in grated zucchini and yellow squash. Cook until the squashes begin to turn translucent. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

3. Transfer to a platter or individual serving plates. Top hot vegetables with goat cheese, basil leaves and kalamata olives. Serve immediately.

Per serving (based on 6, made with 1 cup fresh corn kernels and 1 cup chopped fresh tomatoes): 210 calories; 15g fat; 6g saturated fat; 20mg cholesterol; 8g protein; 11g carbohydrate; 4g sugar; 2g fiber; 280mg sodium; 195mg calcium.

Note: If you choose firmer seasonal vegetables, such as green beans, broccoli, cauliflower or carrots, you may want to parboil them for 3 minutes, then shock in ice water and pat dry before adding to the skillet.

Recipe from Mary Ann Cook, St. Louis
Sunday, July 10, 2011

Ravioli Salad with Olive Oil Dressing - delicious, nutritious and easy to prepare

Friday, July 1, 2011

Corn on the cob from Martha Stewart Living magazine

Martha Stewart Living magazine shows us how to jazz up corn on the cob.
Upgrade classic corn on the cob: Swap butter for heart-healthy olive oil, and season with one of these zippy toppings, adding it just after cooking. Each recipe makes enough for eight ears of corn.

Basil-Mint Pesto
Purée 2 garlic cloves and ¾ cup olive oil in a blender. With machine running, add 1 cup packed fresh mint and ¼ cup packed fresh basil; purée for 1 minute. Brush corn with pesto; season with coarse salt.

Southwest Spice
Combine 2 teaspoons chili powder, 1 teaspoon each ground toasted cumin and coriander seeds, and ½ teaspoon coarse salt. Brush corn with olive oil; sprinkle with spices.

Black Pepper and thyme
Brush corn with olive oil. Sprinkle with 1 tablespoon fresh thyme; season with coarse salt and freshly ground pepper.

Lime zest
Combine 1 tablespoon finely grated lime zest (from 2 limes) and 2 teaspoons coarse salt. Brush corn with olive oil; sprinkle with zest mixture.

Copyright © 2011, Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia, Inc.  Originally published in the July 2011 issue of Martha Stewart Living magazine.
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