Friday, March 23, 2012

When In Doubt...I Make the Whole Lot! Today's recipes: Proscuitto-wrapped Dates, Sauteed Broccoli Raab and Panko-Encrusted Pork


I had fun writing a "Foodie Friday" blog contribution for Deborah Mitchell's fun and varied blog this week. When she invited me, I had, handily, a plethora of new experiences to draw from, including a class I taught, a weekend dessert experiment, and a crazy dinner party - crazy because of my out-of-control menu!

I’m certainly a foodie, but even my inner foodie was on overdrive when I planned a dinner party for two couples who are great friends and mentors to the family. It was the four of them and the four of us…and they were outnumbered by the items on my menu. I’d say, don’t do it…except it was so much fun to see it all come together.

The overall menu is below. I’ll share a few of the recipes today, and if you like, will share more in future blog posts.

The three recipes I share today should be fine for a nice meal, and apart from marinating time takes less than an hour to prepare, if you can multitask. Start by prepping the prosciutto-covered dates (5 minutes), then bake them and the marinated pork (max of 30 minutes), Prep the onions and raab while the baking is done, and finish off with the pork and sauce (10 minutes.)

Appetizers:
  1. Prosciutto Wrapped dates: Today's recipe
  2. Devilled Eggs with an eastern twist (with wasabi sauce, mayo and finely-sliced onions)
  3. Sausages Sauteed with Onions
  4. Baked White Stuffer Mushrooms with Goat Cheese (my preferred cheese being Cypress Grove Chèvre Psychedillic goat milk cheese)
Main course:
  1. Broccoli Raab Tossed with Onions: Today's recipe
  2. Panko-encrusted Pork with a Red Wine Wasabi Sauce: Today's recipe
  3. Teriyaki and Tomato Baked Salmon
  4. Vegetable Casserole
  5. Mushroom Risotto
Dessert:
Pineapple Upside Down Cake


Prosciutto-Wrapped Dates


4 oz proscuitto (should give you 8 to 10 slices)
Medjool dates, as many as the number of slices of prosciutto you have 
  • Wrap each date tightly with a prosciutto slice, making sure that one side has the date peeping out of it
  • Some people like to pack the date with goat cheese - I didn't since it would have worked against the simplicity and sophistication of the other two flavors you are working with
  • Arrange on a baking dish, making sure to spray lightly with oil
  • In an oven heated to 350 degrees, toast the dates for 10 minutes, turning half-way through the process
  • Serve warm!

Broccoli Raab tossed with Onions:



One bunch of broccoli raab, cleaned and cut so that the tops have about 2 inch stems on them
Two medium onions, sliced semi-thick
Salt to taste
Colander and a Basin of water with ice
  • Bring a quart of water to a boil
  • Prep to blanch your raab: The quick boil takes the bitterness out of the raab, but if you want to keep the crunch, you want to make sure it doesn't overcook. This means having the ice water handy to ensure you stop the cooking very quickly
  • Drop the raab into the boiling water and cook for 1 minute
  • Fish out the raab and place them in a colander dipped into the icy cold water
  • In a pan, fry the onions till they are a nice translucent brown
  • Pat dry the raab, then toss into the onions, and add about a teaspoon of salt to taste
  • Cook for about five minutes - you're done!
Panko-Crusted Pork:


2lb Berkshire Pork Medallion Roast
2 cups red wine, ideally with a fruity base 
1/2 cup hot wasabi Sauce ( I buy BookBinders' Hot Wasabi Sauce, but you should find a variety of options in your neighborhood grocery)
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups panko (again, available in the asian food isle of most groceries these days)
Two eggs
Olive oil spray and non stick pan

 Panko-Crusted Pork
  • Whip together 1 cup of red wine, and a quarter cup of wasabi sauce for a creamy mix
  • Marinade the whole roast in the wine-wasabi mix overnight - or as long as you can, but hopefully at least an hour
  • When you are ready to cook, start by heating the oven to 350 degrees
  • Roast the pork for half an hour, then take out to cook
  • There will be a small amount of juice that collects around the succulent roast- keep it aside for the sauce
  • Pat it dry, and slice into quarter-inch slices
  • Beat the eggs to act as a binding agent, and spread the panko on a plate
  • Coat the pork roast slices with egg, then cover with Panko flakes
  • Heat a non-stick pan over a medium flame, and use a light coat of olive oil spray
  • Toast the pork slices till the Panko is a light brown and plate to serve
The Sauce
  • The sauce is very much in keeping with the marinade
  • In a saucepan heat the red wine till it starts to bubble, then pour in the remaining wasabi sauce and whisk
  • As the mixture starts to boil, whisk in the sugar, mixing well to ensure no caramelizing happens
  • Finally dribble in the juice from the bake and you're all set with a piquant sauce to go with your panko pork.

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