Saturday, March 13, 2010

Spinach and Artichoke Dip

Always popular with our students, Paul Dagenbach, Executive Chef at DeSha's, recently taught a Dinner Party class at the school. Paul brought this dip with him from the restaurant and promised the students he would send us the recipe. This dip is easy and delicious!

Spinach and Artichoke Dip
Recipe courtesy of Paul Dagenbach, DeSha's Restaurant

1 teaspoon olive oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 cups heavy cream
4 ounces Parmesan cheese
4 ounces cream cheese, softened
4 ounces fresh spinach, julienne
12 ounces artichoke hearts, drained and chopped

In a medium pan, on low heat, add oil, when hot add garlic and sauté for 1 minute. Add heavy cream and turn heat to medium. Add Parmesan cheese gradually until melted. Add cream cheese, stir to incorporate. When warmed add spinach to wilt, about 3 minutes. Add drained chopped artichoke hearts and mix well. Makes about 3 1/2 cups.

Serve warm with toasted pita chips.


Thursday, March 11, 2010

Penne with Shrimp, Mushrooms and Tomatoes

Simple, yet decadent and elegant - this pasta is special enough for guests. Look for shrimp that are already deveined to make this recipe as easy as possible.

Penne with Shrimp, Mushrooms and Tomatoes

1 tablespoon olive oil
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 small shallot, minced
1¼ cup dry white wine
2 Roma tomatoes, diced
1 cup heavy cream
8 ounces large shrimp, peeled, deveined and halved lengthwise
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley
¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese, plus extra for garnish
salt and pepper, to taste
4 ounces penne pasta, cooked al dente and drained

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and edges are browned, about 6-8 minutes. Add shallot and cook 2 minutes, until softened. Add wine and tomatoes to the skillet and simmer until liquid is reduced to ½ cup, about 5 minutes. Stir in cream and bring to a simmer. Add shrimp, return mixture to a simmer, and cook until sauce has thickened, shrimp curls and is just cooked through, about 4 minutes. Stir in parsley and Parmesan, season with salt and pepper and simmer for an additional minute to thicken sauce. Serve sauce over pasta in warmed bowls and garnish with additional Parmesan. Serves 2.

Note shrimp at bottom right that are halved lengthwise

Mushrooms are cooked until edges are browned

Sauce ingredients simmer together

Sauce served over pasta and garnished with Parmesan

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Standing Rib Roast

Usually reserved for special occasions and dinner with guests, a standing rib roast also makes a relaxing weekend dinner. The roast featured here was relatively small, but the roasting time is all that needs to be adjusted for a larger piece of meat. Always use a thermometer to check the internal temperature - preferably one that can stay in the meat while roasting. I like to serve this with a sauce made from sour cream, prepared horseradish, salt and pepper.

Standing Rib Roast
1 (1-rib) beef rib roast, about 3.25 pounds
2 tablespoons flour
1 tablespoon dry mustard
2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon pepper
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

Remove roast from refrigerator 1 hour before roasting and let stand at room temperature. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil and place a rack on top. Preheat oven to 425°.

Combine flour, dry mustard, salt, pepper and garlic powder in a small bowl. Coat the top and sides of the roast with the flour mixture. Place the meat, rib-side down, on the prepared rack.

Roast until internal temperature reaches desired degree of doneness: 120-125° for medium-rare, 130-135° for medium and 140° for well done. **This roast took 1 hour and 20 minutes to reach 125°. Remove roast from oven, tent with foil and allow to rest for 15 -10 minutes before slicing. Serves 2-3.

Roast is sitting rib-side down

Coated with flour mixture and oven-safe thermometer in place

Roasting with temperature monitor outside of oven

Resting after reaching 125°

Medium-rare and ready to eat!