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hot dogs with chili sauce

Karen Covey

recipe + photo by Karen J. Covey

This recipe was developed by my father who longed to create a sauce for his hot dogs that reminded him of the one he had growing up along the shores of New Jersey. Serve it over your favorite hot dog, with chopped onions, grated cheddar cheese, and a dash of celery salt. Your favorite salty chips and cold beer are also a must for this classic summertime meal.

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1/2 medium onion, chopped
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to to taste
1 clove garlic, minced
1 pound ground beef
1/2 cup low-sodium beef stock
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 teaspoons chili powder
1 teaspoon allspice
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon celery salt
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
4 ounces tomato sauce

  1. In a medium sauté pan, heat oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, 5-10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add garlic and cook for another 1 minute.
  2. Add beef and cook until browned. Spoon off and discard any excess oil from pan (if necessary). 
  3. Add remaining ingredients to pan and simmer over moderate heat until almost all liquid is evaporated, about 10 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to cool.
  4. Once cooled, transfer mixture to a food processor and pulse until meat is finely ground, about 5 pulses (if necessary). Serve immediately or keep warm on low heat until ready to serve.

Makes approximately 2 cups (enough for 8 to 10 hot dogs). 


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how to choose the best fish

Karen Covey

words by Emily Weber | photo by Jennifer Johnson

It’s hard to know how to make the most sustainable choice at the fish market, and sometimes the local option isn’t always best.

Monterey Bay Aquarium's Seafood Watch app makes the choice a lot easier. The free app, available for Android and iPhone, tells you what seafood items are the most sustainable and provides recommendations for “Best Choices”, “Good Alternatives”, and items you should avoid. For example, if you’re in the store picking out cod for dinner you can read the “Cod Overview” which recommends the following: “Buy Pacific cod caught in Alaska. Then look for a ‘Good Alternative’ from the U.S. West Coast and British Columbia, Canada, but know that these sources have environmental issues. Say ‘No, thanks’ to Atlantic cod, except when it’s caught by the Marine Stewardship Council. Also, steer clear of Pacific cod from Japan and Russia.”

If you’re flexible about the type of seafood you are purchasing, you can use the app to find more information about the options at your local market, U.S. North Atlantic Mackerel for example, and make an educated purchase from there. Or, if you’re out for sushi, the app allows you to search anything by its English or Japanese name (i.e. Eel or Unagi).

The app also takes into account the health benefits of different fish and recommends them in tandem with their sustainability. The app’s “Super Green List” recommends five A+ sustainable fish options with low-levels of mercury and high levels of omega 3s: Atlantic Mackerel (purse seine, from Canada and the U.S.), Freshwater Coho Salmon (farmed in tank systems, from the U.S.), Pacific Sardines (wild-caught), Salmon (wild-caught, from Alaska), and Salmon, Canned (wild-caught, from Alaska).

The Monterey Bay Aquarium Seafood Watch program also works with business partners to help them supply the most sustainable fish to their customers. When you enter in your zip code it will point you to the nearest Seafood Watch Partner, including restaurants, fish markets, and major retailers. The listed partners have committed to sell only “environmentally responsible seafood and help transform the marketplace in favor of more responsible fisheries and aquaculture operations.” One of their biggest ocean-friendly partners that probably has a location near you? Whole Foods.

To learn more about Seafood Watch visit: seafoodwatch.org or download the app in your app store. 


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blueberry cheesecake ice cream

Karen Covey

It’s blueberry season and this is one of our favorite ways to enjoy them on a hot summer day. Be sure to freeze enough extra blueberries from your stash so that you can whip up a batch long after the season has ended.

Blueberry Sauce
1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries
3 tablespoons sugar
Fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon cornstarch

Ice Cream Base
1/2 cup graham cracker crumbs
6 ounces cream cheese, at room temperature
1/2 cup sugar
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 cups heavy cream
Pinch salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

  1. Make blueberry sauce. In a small saucepan, combine blueberries, sugar, and a generous dash of lemon juice. Bring to a boil over medium heat for 5-7 minutes, until blueberries begin to pop. Reduce heat and whisk in cornstarch until smooth and continue to stir until mixture has thickened. Allow sauce to cool slightly, then transfer to a blender and process until smooth. Transfer sauce to refrigerator to finish cooling. 
  2. Preheat oven to 350°F. Place graham cracker crumbs on a baking sheet and cook for 5 minutes, until lightly toasted. Remove from oven and allow to cool to room temperature. Set aside.
  3. Make ice cream base. In a medium bowl, beat cream cheese until smooth. Add sugar and continue to beat until light and fluffy. Add cornstarch, followed by heavy cream, salt, and vanilla. Mix until combined.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for about 2 hours, until well chilled.
  5. Once base and sauce are cold, remove base from refrigerator and churn in an ice cream maker for 15-20 minutes, or until an instant-read thermometer registers 21°F.
  6. Pour semi-frozen ice cream into a freezer-safe container. Spoon blueberry sauce over ice cream and sprinkle top with toasted graham crackers. Gently swirl ice cream with a spoon to incorporate layers. (Do not over-mix or ice cream will turn completely blue.)
  7. Cover ice cream and freeze for at least 4 hours before serving.

Serves 6.

cook’s note: It’s important that the sauce is completely blended so that everything is nice and creamy, or you run the risk of having some icy pieces in the finished ice cream.


 
 

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buttermilk bran muffins

Karen Covey

buttermilk-bran-muffins.jpg

Summer entertaining is also about serving a great breakfast to your house guests, one they’ll love that also doesn’t take a ton of time to pull together. Here are a few of our favorite breakfast ideas to wow your guests with little effort.

This is our go-to breakfast muffin for early morning entertaining. We love it because there’s no mixer required to make, allowing you to easily (and quietly) make them while your house guests are still asleep. They’ll love waking up to these muffins, guaranteed not to stay around for very long.

Cooking spray, for greasing
1 cup unprocessed coarse wheat bran
1 1/3 cup whole wheat flour
1 1/4 teaspoons baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons honey
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups buttermilk
Fresh butter, for serving

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. 
  2. Coat mini muffin tins (or regular-sized tins) with cooking spray. Set aside.
  3. In a medium bowl, combine bran, flour, baking soda, and salt. 
  4. In another medium bowl, whisk together egg, honey, applesauce, oil, vanilla, and buttermilk until light and frothy, 1-2 minutes. Dry wet mixture to dry and gently stir to combine. Do not overmix.
  5. Divide batter among prepared muffin tins, filling 2/3 full. Bake until tops spring back when pressed gently in center, 18-22 minutes (depending on size of muffin tins you’re using). Allow to cool in pan for about 10 minutes, then transfer to a baking rack to cook completely. 

Makes approximately 18 mini muffins.


chunky homemade granola 

Making homemade granola is surprisingly easy, and you can customize it any way you like. This version uses oil, which tends to make a crispier (and chunkier) granola, especially if you don’t toss it around it as it cooks. Make a big batch and keep it on hand for easy weekday snacking.

Cooking spray
6 cups old-fashioned oats
1 cup unsalted whole almonds, roughly chopped
1 cup shredded, sweetened coconut
1/4 cup finely ground flaxseed or wheat germ, optional
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 cup honey
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons vegetable or canola oil
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

  1. Preheat oven to 300°F. 
  2. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper, coat top of paper with cooking spray, and set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, combine oats, almonds, coconut, flaxseed or wheat germ (if using), and salt. 
  4. In a medium bowl, combine sugar, honey, oil, and vanilla and stir until combined. Pour over oat mixture and mix until evenly coated. Pour granola onto baking sheet and, using a spatula, press granola firmly. Bake, without stirring, until outside edges are just golden brown, about 30-35 minutes. (Start checking after 25 minutes to avoid overcooking.) 
  5. Remove from oven and allow granola to cool completely before breaking it apart into chunks. Granola can be stored in an airtight container for up to 2 weeks.

Makes approximately 8 cups.

This recipe is from The Coastal Table cookbook by Union Park Press.


vanilla bean yogurt

A simple, yet delicious way to amp up plain yogurt.

1 35-ounce container plain Greek yogurt
1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon honey
Homemade granola (recipe above), for serving
Fresh fruit, for serving

In a large bowl, combine ingredients (except granola and fruit). Taste and adjust if desired. Cover with plastic wrap and chill until ready to serve.

Serve 4-6.


blueberry smoothie

Double or triple the batch and make it the day before. Keep it covered in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

1 cup ice
1/2-1 cup whole milk
1 cup frozen blueberries
1 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon vanilla extract

In a blender, chop ice. Add 1/2 cup milk, blueberries, yogurt, honey, and vanilla and blend until smooth. Add more milk if smoothie is too thick. Taste and adjust as desired.

Serves 1.

cook’s note: To freeze freshly-picked blueberries, pick through and discard any damaged ones. Lay the blueberries in a single layer on a baking sheet and place in the freezer. Once the blueberries are frozen, you can transfer them to a freezer bag.

For more of our favorite smoothie recipes, click here.


For more great recipes, be sure to grab your copy of
The Coastal Table magazine.

THIS WEEKEND ONLY, PRICES ON ALL BACK ISSUES REDUCED!

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Quantities are limited. Valid Friday, July 14 - Sunday, July 16, 2017
until 5pm EST.


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strawberry tomato rosé mussels

Karen Covey

recipe + photo by Ashton Keefe

This recipe comes from chef and cookbook author Ashton Keefe. We love everything about this combination, which is a perfect flavor tribute to summer.

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1/2 red onion, minced
3 cloves garlic, smashed
1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and diced
1 cup dry rosé wine
14 ounces crushed tomatoes
Kosher salt, to taste
2 lb. mussels, cleaned, scrubbed, and beards removed
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
Bread, for serving

  1. In a large pot, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and garlic and cook for about 5 minutes until onion is translucent. Add strawberries, and continue to cook, stirring every so often until strawberries have broken down but still retain their shape. Add rosé and simmer, reducing and burning off alcohol until about half of original amount and slightly thickened. Add tomato and season with salt. Give everything another stir. 
  2. Add mussels on top, dot with butter and cover for 7-10 minutes until most of mussels have opened. Stir mussels into sauce. Remove and discard any unopened mussels. Transfer mussels to a large bowl and serve with bread for dipping, and of course a glass of rosé. 

Serves 4.


 
 

To get more great summer recipes, download a copy of our new summer issue here.

Or stock up on our other summer issues here. All back issues are 1/2 price!


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bbq chicken

Karen Covey

As summer gets into full swing, we love entertaining outside as much as possible. We start with the classics: grilled chicken, some great sides, and a refreshing dessert are just about all you need for a perfect holiday weekend with friends.

4 bone-in breast of chickens, with skin on
2 tablespoons canola oil
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 cup homemade (or prepared) bbq sauce, plus extra for serving

  1. Preheat grill to medium-high heat. 
  2. Brush chicken breasts with oil and season with salt and pepper. Place chicken on grill, skin-side down, and grill until a nice char forms, about 5 minutes. Turn chicken breasts and cook for another 5 minutes. Turn off one side of grill and move chicken to off side of grill. Baste chicken and cook for 20-25 minutes, turning and basting chicken, about every 5 minutes until chicken is cooked through (internal temperature should be 160°F).
  3. Transfer chicken to a cutting board, tent with aluminum foil and allow chicken to rest for 10-15 minutes. Once cooled, remove breasts from bone and cut into thick pieces. 

Serves 4.


smashed potato salad

This is a delicious take on a classic potato salad. Be sure to leave some of the potatoes chunky for great texture. We also love this with grilled, chopped scallions and red onions, and crumbled blue cheese.

4 medium Yukon gold potatoes, diced
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup plus 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf Italian parsley

  1. Place potatoes in a pot of cold, salted water and bring to a boil. Cook until fork tender, about 25-30 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside to cool slightly.
  2. When potatoes are cool enough to handle, gently smash into large chunks using a fork.
  3. In a small bowl, combine mustard and vinegar. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in 1/4 cup olive oil to emulsify. Add in another 1-2 tablespoons oil if dressing is too thick. Add some of dressing to warm potatoes and toss. Allow potatoes to cool to room temperature.
  4. Once cooled, add parsley and toss with enough remaining dressing to coat. Serve at room temperature.

Serves 4-6.


classic coleslaw

For added crunch and sweetness add in 1 large peeled, cored, and diced Granny Smith apple. Finely diced red onion also adds a nice crunch too.

1 head green cabbage
1 large carrot, peeled and shredded
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1-2 tablespoons sugar
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf Italian parsley

  1. Remove any tough outer pieces of cabbage and cut away the core. Shred cabbage (or thinly slice) and place in a bowl along with carrot.
  2. In a bowl, combine 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons mayonnaise, apple cider vinegar and 1 tablespoon sugar. Season with salt and pepper. Taste and adjust if desired, adding in more sugar if needed. Add to cabbage mixture and stir to combine. Add in more mayonnaise until you reach desired consistency. Cover with plastic and refrigerate until ready to serve. Toss in parsley just before serving.

Serves 4.


watermelon slices with mint syrup

You can make the simple syrup ahead of time and just leave it in the fridge until you’re ready to use it. Leftover simple syrup is also great in cocktails.

4 1-inch thick slices fresh watermelon

Simple Syrup
1/2 cup water
1/2 cup sugar
2 large sprigs fresh mint

Roughly chopped fresh mint, for garnish

  1. Make simple syrup. In a small saucepan, add sugar, water, and mint and bring to a gentle boil. Stir until sugar dissolves. Reduce heat and simmer for 10-15 minutes. Allow to cool to room temperature. Remove and discard mint. 
  2. Place watermelon slices on a serving platter and drizzle with some mint syrup. Garnish with fresh mint and serve.

Serves 4.


While there are plenty of great BBQ sauces on the market (we love Lillie’s), you can also make a version of it yourself. For a few ideas, check out these recipes:


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meet the maker: The Rope Co.

Karen Covey

words by Mackenzie Wise | photos by Nicole Wolf

rope1.jpg

While Maine-based The Rope Co. is fairly new, founded only in 2013, it is steeped in proud New England traditions and legacies. The owners, Logan and Hannah Rackliff, have taken a key part of Maine’s lobstering community, the rope used to haul traps in and out of the Atlantic, and turned it into beautiful and durable household goods. 

Logan was inspired to start The Rope Co., by his family, which boasts five generations of lobster fishermen. His grandfather, who once owned the largest lobster rope-making company in the U.S., was the first to make doormats out of lobster rope, but was too busy to pursue the idea. Encouraged by his grandfather, and eager to carry on his family’s entrepreneurial and industrial spirit, Logan decided to start making mats himself after graduating from college in 2011. 

After spending a winter weaving mats alongside his lobstering partner, Logan brought a stack to the New England Made Trade Show, which helped unofficially launch the company. Logan expanded their line of products to include a magazine rack and woven baskets, and though he handled production himself for the first few years, Logan and his wife have since hired a number of native Mainers to help.

The company, now visits a few trade shows a year, and has high hopes for expanding their line of products with more lifestyle items. Hannah admits though that she and Logan are perfectionists and can be slow to introduce new products because they take the developing process very seriously. They want to be confident that the items they produce will contribute to the company’s aim of being “authentic, tough, and functional.” 

Considering that each product from The Rope Co. is sold with a lifetime guarantee, it seems safe to say that their products, beautifully hand-crafted with resources from Maine, by native Mainers, are definitely tough.   


 
 

You can see The Rope Co.’s stylish mat in our outdoor showers feature in our new summer issue, on sale now!


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spicy shrimp lettuce wraps

Karen Covey

As the summer heat settles in, we love to serve quick-cooking meals that require as little time at the stove as possible. As an alternative, you can also keep the shrimp whole (don’t chop them) and cook them on the grill if you prefer to do the cooking outside. This meal is both light and flavorful, and a nice balance of flavors and texture from the spicy shrimp to creamy avocado to a zesty quick slaw. For extra spice, add in more heat as desired. Double the batch for even larger entertaining. It’s great for sharing as everyone can help themselves, making for a more interactive experience. 

1 pound large shrimp, washed, peeled, and deveined
1 large clove garlic, smashed into a paste
1/2 teaspoon chili powder
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
Pinch cayenne pepper, or to taste
1/4 cup canola oil, divided

Slaw
Juice from 1 lime
1 tablespoon honey
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh cilantro
2 cups shredded green cabbage

2 avocados
Leaves from 2 heads Boston bibb lettuce
Fresh cilantro, for serving
Limes, for serving

  1. Pat dry shrimp and finely chop. In a bowl, combine garlic, chili powder, cumin, cayenne and 2 tablespoons canola oil. Season with salt and pepper. Add shrimp and toss well to coat completely. Cover with plastic wrap and chill for about 30 minutes.
  2. Make slaw. In a bowl, combine lime juice and honey. Season with salt and pepper. Add cilantro and cabbage, tossing well to evenly coat. Set aside.
  3. In a nonstick pan, heat remaining 2 tablespoons oil over medium-high heat. Add shrimp, and stir constantly until shrimp turn opaque and are cooked through, 3-5 minutes. Remove shrimp and place in a serving bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature.
  4. Cut avocados in half, remove pits (and discard). Using a tablespoon, scoop out avocados and place upside down on a cutting board and thinly slice.
  5. Place a couple of avocado slices in center of 2 lettuce leaves. Add some slaw and some shrimp. Garnish with cilantro and lime juice and repeat with remaining lettuce leaves.

Serves 4-6.


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chive blossom vinegar

Karen Covey

Chive blossoms are really delicious when tossed into a garden salad but we also love this recipe for using the remaining blossoms from our fresh chives for an easy homemade vinegar.  

1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/4 cup packed chive blossoms

Remove flower heads off of stems and place them in a bowl of cold water to get rid of any grit (or small critters). Once washed, pat them completely dry. Place blossoms in a jar about halfway full, and fill jar with vinegar. Cover and allow to sit at room temperature to steep for about 1 week. When ready to use it, strain the vinegar and transfer it to a clean jar.

Makes approximately 1/2 cup.


chive blossom vinaigrette

In a mason jar, add 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 tablespoon honey, 2 tablespoons chive blossom vinegar, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Cover jar and shake until completely combined. Taste for flavor and adjust as desired. Toss with your favorite garden greens and enjoy.


chilled zucchini soup

photo by Jennifer Johnson

Any leftover garnish from this soup can be used to make the vinegar. For this and all the other great zucchini recipes featured in our new summer issue, click here to grab a copy.


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summer favorites

Karen Covey

styling by Abby Capalbo | photo by Erin McGinn

Here’s our curated list for summer!

for our favorite seasonal recipes, be sure to stock up on all of our back issues and get cooking! everything is 1/2 price! 


 
 

or get a copy of our new summer issue, on sale now!


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cottage makeover: before + after

Karen Covey

Our new summer issue features the cottage makeover of our very own publisher, Karen J. Covey. Once cloaked in shag carpet and covered from top to bottom with wallpaper, this quaint coastal cottage received a fresh makeover and is now a cook’s dream.

Located along Buzzards Bay in Massachusetts, Karen fell in love with the house from the very first moment. She could see the structure of the house was solid and had tons of potential. Looking past the dated kitchen, outdated fixtures, and small rooms, Karen saw a house waiting for a new, fresh look.

Renovating a house isn’t easy, and the smaller the house, the more difficult it can be. To maximize every inch of space possible, Karen hired a local architect, Will Saltonstall, to help with the design, a step that was well worth the investment. Hiring an architect can seem like unnecessary money in a renovation project but in fact, it’s some of the best money you can spend, especially if your renovating an entire house. Working with a trained professional allows you to look past your own wish list of wants and desires and opens you up to what can really be done. And a good architect helps you create the home of your dreams.

Saltonstall and his team knew that they could relocate the heating unit to the attic and the water system to the basement, allowing that current floor space off the kitchen to now become part of a bigger kitchen with a floor-to-ceiling pantry. Those decisions alone opened up the entire floor plan and allowed Karen and her husband, David, a big open kitchen for entertaining.

before1.jpg

To make the space of the small two-bedroom cottage feel larger, they took down the wall at the entrance (seen here) and the wall leading into the kitchen. 

before2.jpg

Old-fashioned, build-in A/C units were outdated and not very functional. With all the dampness that comes from living by the beach, the couple opted for central air throughout.

before3.jpg

Linoleum floors and vintage wallpaper were quickly replaced with bright white cabinets and dark wood floors. Having the same flooring throughout the cottage helps make the space feel connected.

styling by Abby Capalbo | photos by Erin McGinn

styling by Abby Capalbo | photos by Erin McGinn

Simple white walls and counters, and open shelving in the kitchen keeps this newly renovated cottage light and bright.


 
 

To see more photos of the renovation, grab a copy of our new summer issue.
ON SALE NOW!


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cold sesame noodles

Karen Covey

We love any kind of entertaining menu that we can make ahead and this recipe is no exception. It’s perfect for hot summer nights, or as a portable potluck or picnic meal. For entertaining, serve these with one of our favorite cocktails, a chilled saketini (recipe below).

1 lb. linguine noodles
Kosher salt, to taste
1 tablespoon sesame oil
3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
1 1-inch piece fresh ginger, finely minced
1 large clove garlic, finely minced
1 teaspoon red chile paste
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons rice vinegar
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce
1/2 creamy peanut butter
1/2 cup hot water
1 bunch scallions, white and light green parts, thinly sliced
Sesame seeds, for garnish

  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add a pinch of salt. Add linguine and cook for 7-10 minutes, until al dente. Drain and transfer to a large bowl. Toss with sesame oil and 1 tablespoon canola oil and set aside.
  2. In a medium saucepan, heat remaining canola oil over medium-low heat. Add ginger, garlic, and red chile paste. Cook for 2-3 minutes, until softened and just fragrant. Add brown sugar, rice vinegar, soy sauce, peanut butter, and water. Stir and cook until sauce is combined. taste and adjust as desired. Add a bit more water if necessary (should be consistency of a thick dressing).
  3. Pour 3/4 of sauce over linguine and toss well, coating all of linguine. Transfer to a serving bowl and top with remaining sauce. Chill until ready to serve.
  4. Before serving, top linguine with scallions and sesame seeds.

Serves 4.

cook’s note: For a bit more substance, top with cooked chicken, diced cucumbers, and cilantro.


chilled saketini

photo by Cassandra Birocco

chilled-saketini.jpg

Japanese cucumbers, which are less seedy than regular cucumbers, make a beautiful garnish for this sophisticated cocktail and give it a subtle hint of crispness as well. 

Japanese cucumber, for garnish
Chopped ice, for serving
6 ounces vodka
6 ounces dry sake

  1. Place martini glasses in freezer.
  2. Cut cucumber into thin rounds and set aside.
  3. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add 1 1/2 ounces vodka and 1 1/2 ounces sake and shake well.
  4. Remove martini glasses from freezer and strain mixture into chilled martini glasses. Repeat 3 more times. 
  5. Add a slice of cucumber to each glass and serve cold.

Serves 4. 

This recipe is from The Coastal Table cookbook, and reprinted with permission by Union Park Press


 

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meet the maker: Seersucker Southern Style Gin

Karen Covey

words by Mackenzie Wise

Just in time for National Gin Day, the folks at Azar Family Brands, have created a new kind of southern style gin that’s perfect for celebrating.

Seersucker Southern Style Gin was born of a desire to create a gin with a lighter and sweeter profile than that of a typical London Dry. Creators Trey and Kimberly Azar spent over a year perfecting Seersucker’s flavor profile, which was inspired by ingredients common to southern kitchens. Hints of juniper make way for layers of citrus, honeysuckle, and mint, designed to leave a long and refreshing finish. 

Seersucker embodies southern warmth and approachability, right down to its design. Azar says that a chance encounter with a Derby Day partygoer, decked out in traditional seersucker shorts, inspired not only the name but also the drink’s classic blue-and-white striped label. 

Made with all natural ingredients, and slow-distilled through a hand-hammered copper pot for a cleaner, better-tasting flavor, Seersucker Southern Style Gin is light enough to enjoy on it’s own, or mixed any way you please. And for any non-gin lovers out there, this is one to try. 

Trey’s favorite way to enjoy it is simply with club soda and an orange twist. We also love it in our frozen cucumber gin + tonic. But no matter you choose to enjoy it, you’ll find it a perfect, versatile addition to this summer’s cocktail menu.


frozen cucumber gin + tonic

Light and refreshing, and perfect for sipping. But be careful, they don’t taste like they have gin in them and can be quite dangerous!

2 cups ice
1/2 english cucumber, peeled and chopped (about 1 cup)
Juice from 1 lime, or to taste
3 ounces Seersucker Southern Style Gin, or to taste
3 ounces tonic water

In a blender, combine ice, cucumber, lime juice, gin, and tonic water. Blend until completely combined. Taste and adjust as desired. Carefully pour (or scoop) into serving glasses and enjoy!

Makes 2.

cook’s note: Blended mixture will separate after awhile so you may need to stir it again as you drink it to combine.


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chicken paillard with grilled potatoes

Karen Covey

palliard.jpg

Paillard is a term that refers to the quick cooking of thinly-pounded meat. It’s great for entertaining because it cooks quickly and a little goes a long way since you’re pounding out the chicken. If you have the extra time, marinating the chicken for a bit helps lock in the flavor. 

4 boneless chicken breasts
4 cloves garlic, smashed into a paste (see cook’s note)
2 tablespoons finely minced fresh oregano
Zest from 1 lemon
Juice from 2 lemons, divided
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
1 bag baby Yukon gold potatoes
Fresh garden greens, for serving
Parmigiano-Reggiano, for serving
Lemon wedges, for serving

  1. Place one chicken breast between 2 sheets of wax or parchment paper. Using a mallet or rolling pin, gently pound chicken until about 1/4-inch thick. Transfer chicken to large glass or ceramic baking dish and repeat with remaining chicken.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine garlic, oregano, and zest and juice from 1 lemon. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in 2 tablespoons olive oil and pour over chicken, coating each completely with marinade. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes, or up to 4 hours. 
  3. Place potatoes in a large pot and cover with water. Place over medium heat and cook until just tender, 15-20 minutes (depending on size of potatoes). Drain and set aside.
  4. Preheat grill to medium-high.
  5. Place potatoes in a large bowl and add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Season with salt and pepper. Toss to completely coat potatoes. 
  6. Remove chicken from refrigerator. Place chicken and potatoes on grill. Cook chicken for about 5 minutes until grill marks form. Flip chicken, and continue to cook until chicken is cooked through, about 5 more minutes. Continuing cooking potatoes until tender and can be easily pierced with a knife. Transfer chicken to a plate and tent with aluminum foil. Set potatoes aside.
  7. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, add juice from remaining lemon. Season with salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in remaining 1/4 cup olive oil. Add greens and gently toss to coat. 
  8. Place chicken in center of a serving platter (or individual plates). Top with greens and some shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Serve with potatoes and extra lemon for drizzling.

Serves 4.

cook’s note: To smash garlic, roughly chop cloves on a cutting board. Add a good pinch of kosher salt and using the back of a knife, smash garlic into a paste.


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brown rice sushi bowls

Karen Covey

Sushi is one of our favorite go-to meals in the summer because it’s light and takes advantage of the freshest seafood of the season. But sometimes we’re just in the mood for our favorite vegetable roll, so we’ve adapted the flavors we love from them to make them at home. We love to serve them over brown rice, our absolute favorite pantry staple ingredient instead of sushi rice for an even healthier twist. 

You can add just about anything you like to these bowls which makes them great for entertaining. You can serve these all assembled, or serve it more family-style and allow your guests to create their own. Shrimp, salmon, tuna, or tofu are just a few other things you can add to the bowls, but the possibilities are really pretty endless. For a bit of heat in the dipping sauce, add some crushed red pepper flakes to taste.

2 cups short-grain brown rice, rinsed
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
1/4 cup low-sodium soy sauce
1/4 teaspoon sesame oil, or to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly gourd black pepper, to taste
1/2 nori sheet, crumbled
2 avocados
1 English cucumber, thinly sliced or diced
4 scallions, light and green parts, thinly sliced
Freshly cilantro, for garnish
Black and regular sesame seeds, for garnish

  1. In a medium saucepan, bring 4 cups water and brown rice to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer until rice is cooked and water is absorbed, 40-45 minutes. Remove from heat. Remove lid and place a clean kitchen towel over top of pot. Place lid over towel and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, fluff with a fork.
  2. In a small bowl, combine vinegar, soy sauce, and sesame oil. Season with a bit of salt and some pepper. Taste and adjust as desired. Set aside.
  3. In a dry skillet, toast nori sheet over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until lightly browned. Remove from heat and allow to cool. Once cooled, chop into smaller pieces with a sharp knife. Set aside.
  4. Cut avocados in half, remove pits (and discard). Using a tablespoon, scoop out avocados and thinly slice (or dice).
  5. Divide rice among serving bowls, followed by cucumber, scallions, avocado, and cilantro. Garnish each with nori and sesame seeds. Drizzle with sauce and serve immediately.

Serves 4.

cook’s note: Toasting the nori again helps to make it a bit crispy, allowing you to chop it up easier.


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grilled swordfish with pesto + greens

Karen Covey

styling by Abby Capalbo | photos by Erin McGinn

Today we’re launching our new entertaining series. Every Friday throughout the summer we’ll share with you our favorite menu ideas that you can pull together in no time. Last minute house guests? No problem. You’ve got you covered.

Our first meal is one of our go-to’s for quick entertaining. Fresh seafood on the grill is always a hit and your guests will appreciate the fresh bounty from the sea. A good smear of mayonnaise on the swordfish before grilling really does help to keep it moist while it cooks. 

Pesto
2 cups packed fresh basil
Juice from 1/2 lemon, plus extra for serving
1 clove garlic, roughly chopped
2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, or to taste
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving

Cooking spray, for greasing
Mayonnaise
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 fresh swordfish steaks
Fresh garden greens, for serving

  1. Make pesto. In a food processor, add basil, lemon juice, garlic, and Parmigiano-Reggiano. Season with salt and pepper. Pulse a few times until mixture is finely chopped. Slowly stream in olive oil and process until mixture is combined. Taste for flavor and add more lemon juice or oil if necessary. Set aside.
  2. Preheat grill to medium-high. Coat grill with cooking spray.
  3. Place about 1/4 cup mayonnaise in a bowl. Using a pastry brush, brush swordfish steaks on both sides with mayonnaise and season one side of each steak with salt and pepper. Place swordfish steaks on grill, seasoned-side down and cook for about 5 minutes, until nice grill marks form. Turn swordfish steaks over and cook for another 5 minutes. After about 10 minutes, turn off far end of grill (where steaks weren’t cooking) and move swordfish steaks to this side of grill to allow them to finish cooking through, another 5 minutes (cooking time depends on thickness of steaks). Remove from grill, tent with aluminum foil and set aside.
  4. To serve, transfer swordfish steaks to a serving platter and top each with some pesto. Top with some greens and serve. Serve remaining greens in a bowl tossed with a drizzle of olive oil, lemon juice, and some salt and pepper.

Serves 4-6.

cook’s note: Pesto is a perfect make-ahead sauce to have in the refrigerator. Make a bigger batch on the weekend and have it ready to go for the rest of the week. When storing pesto, add a thin layer of olive oil over the top of it (covering the pesto completely) to help the pesto from turning brown. If it does turn a bit brown, simply discard that part and use the rest of it.


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ingredient spotlight: radishes

Karen Covey

Radishes are so much more than a pretty garnish for salads and tacos. In fact, the greens themselves are a great way to use the entire vegetable while boosting your calcium and vitamins at the same time. Here’s our version of a green smoothie, using the greens, kale, dates for sweetness and some good Greek yogurt to thicken it up. 

recipe by Mackenzie Wise 

radish greens smoothie

An easy way to use up your radish greens. When you combine them with kale, apple, and avocado, no one will even know they’re in there.

1 1/2 cups ice
1 cup water
1 green apple, chopped
1/2 avocado, halved and pitted
1 cup packed radish greens, trimmed and washed
1 cup packed chopped kale, trimmed and washed
1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt
4 pitted dates
Juice from 1 lemon, or to taste
1 tablespoon honey, optional, or to taste

In a blender, chop ice. Add water, apple, avocado, radish greens, kale, yogurt, dates, lemon juice, and honey (if using). Blend until completely smooth. Add more water or lemon juice if necessary. Taste and adjust flavor as desired.

Makes 1 16-ounce smoothie.

For more of our favorite radish recipes like radish greens gremolata and roasted radishes with butter + spring herbs, download a copy of our spring ’17 issue here.


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3 bbq sauces to get you grilling!

Karen Covey

We love these national food holidays (it’s national bbq day!), and this one is just in time for Memorial Day weekend.

Homemade bbq sauce is a good thing to have in your arsenal of recipes, especially as the summer grilling months approach (and it also makes a great gift). This is our go-to-sauce with a few modifications to it below, and a few other must-haves for the season.

basic bbq sauce

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for grilling
1 small onion, finely diced
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
4 cloves garlic, finely minced
3/4 cup ketchup
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup molasses
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients for barbecue sauce and whisk to combine. Bring to a gentle boil, reduce heat to low and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened slightly. 


bacon bbq sauce

For a smoky bacon bbq variation, cook 1 strip diced Applewood smoked bacon in saucepan before starting the rest of the recipe. Once the bacon is crispy, remove it with a slotted spoon and set aside. Return saucepan to low heat and begin with oil and onions…


mango bbq sauce

Fresh mango adds a natural sweetness to a basic bbq sauce, and we love the finished orange-hued color it gives it as well. This one is best basted over grilled chicken. For a bit of smoky flavor, add in a pinch of ground cumin, or for hint of spice, a pinch of red pepper flakes.

1 tablespoon vegetable (or canola) oil
1 small onion, diced
Kosher salt, to taste
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup ketchup
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 medium ripe mango, peeled, pitted, and diced

In a medium saucepan, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add garlic and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add remaining ingredients and stir to combine. Bring to a gentle boil, reduce heat to low and cook for 15-20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until sauce has thickened slightly and mango is tender. Remove from heat and allow to cool to room temperature. Once cooled, blend until smooth.

Makes approximately 1 cup.


For the best equipment, invest in one of these.

And the best tools (long-handles are key!)

For an easy way to add additional flavor, try planks, wraps, and chips.


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homemade ricotta

Karen Covey

Making a batch of homemade ricotta is actually much easier than you might think. Because there are only a few ingredients, use the best quality milk and cream you can find. The longer you let the mixture drain, the thicker the ricotta will become. 

1 quart (4 cups) whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
1 teaspoon kosher salt
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

  1. Place a large sieve over a large glass bowl. Line sieve with 2 layers of cheesecloth. Set aside.
  2. Pour milk, cream and salt into a stainless steel or enameled pot (such as a Le Creuset.) Bring to a full boil over medium heat, stirring occasionally to prevent bottom from burning. Remove pot from heat and stir in lemon juice. Allow the mixture to stand for 5-10 minutes until mixture curdles (see cook's note.)
  3. Using a large spoon or ladle (not a slotted spoon), carefully transfer mixture into prepared sieve and allow to drain into bowl at room temperature for 30 minutes (ricotta will firm even more as it cools). Transfer ricotta to a bowl and discard cheesecloth. Discard liquid (or whey), or save it for another use. Cover ricotta and refrigerate until ready to use. Ricotta will keep for up to 3 days.

Makes approximately 2 cups.

cook's note: If mixture doesn't curdle when you add the lemon juice, add in a bit more, 1 tablespoon at a time.


ricotta + parmesan fritters with pesto from Donna Hay

lemon ricotta gnocchi with fresh peas from Sweet Paul

lemony ricotta dip
Combine zest and juice from 1 lemon, a pinch of red pepper flakes, kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, and 1-2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil. Stir and taste as desired. Serve with crackers for dipping.

leftover ricotta can also be:
stirred into scrambled eggs, served on top of spaghetti, or served on toasted bread slices with a drizzle of honey.


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