Saturday, March 5, 2011

Savory Biscotti

No, that is not a typo. Savory Biscotti.

You may be thinking that biscotti is hard, italian cookie that is enjoyed in the afternoon with coffee or a light dessert treat. These are all true but did you also know that this cookie can be *gasp* savory?!

Yes, Giada said so.

She is God when it comes to anything italian.

Making sweet things savory us actually nothing new. In case you didn't know (which  I didn't so its okay ;)) a cracker is pretty much a savory cookie. They are made mostly the same way. Beginning by creaming butter and adding in flavorings. For cookies, sugar is usually added in with the butter but for crackers, it can be anything from cheese to different seasonings.

These crackers are flavored using some classic italian ingredients: goat cheese, pecorino, and herbs de Provence. They simply melt in your mouth and are perfect paired with almost any kind of dinner. Soup for dipping, salad for scooping, or butter for spreading.

Biscotti is not hard to make. Make these. You'll thank me later. Or maybe now.

Savory Biscotti
Recipe Adapted From: Giada De Laurentiis 

2 C. All purpose flour
1 stick butter, softened
3 oz. softened goat cheese
3 tbs. grated pecorino
3 tbs. herbs de Provence
3 tbs. sugar
1 tsp. sea salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
2 eggs beaten, at room temperature

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Make sure the rack is in the center of the oven.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, salt, and seasonings. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, goat cheese, pecorino, and sugar. Slowly beat in the eggs until well combined. Add the flour in batches and mix in until just combined. 

Wet your fingers and for, the dough into a long log. 
Bake until a light, golden brown color. Cool completely before moving onto the next step. 

Once log is completely cooled, slice into biscotti shapes, about 1/2 inch thickness. Place cut side up on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes. Flip and then bake another 15 minutes until golden on all sides. 

May be stored in an airtight container for up to one week. 

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Black Bean and Edamame Salad

I am a salad lover. Often, I watch the Today show and they have a nutritionist on there named Joy Bauer. She answers frequent questions about healthy eating and and dieting. She talks about how if you don't like salads you shouldn't "suffer" through them.

Suffer through a salad?! Who could suffer through a salad? Certainly not I.

Especially one as delicious and flavorful as this. This salad is filling and satisfying without the need of any added protein. The edamame and black beans add filling protein, fiber, and flavor that is very satiating. I made this for meatless Mondays and bulked it up by tossing it with raw spinach and red leaf lettuce to get a really delicious dinner. Adding a piece of grilled chicken would certainly be alright, but I enjoyed mine with this lovely savory biscotti. (Recipe coming tomorrow!)

If you are trying to get more vegetarian meals into your life, this may be the way to go. Beans and pure soy protein give a great heftiness to this dish and you didn't even need to break out a skillet!

When you hear the word "biscotti", you would often think of a traditional hard, italian cookie. This, however, is more like a cracker. Flavored with pecorino and tangy goat cheese, it makes a great contrast to almost any meal. (And has great scoop-ability, especially for this salad ;) )

Black Bean and Edamame Salad
1 Can Black Beans, drained and rinsed with the liquid reserved
1 C. Edamame, shelled
1 English cucumber
1/2 C. cherry tomatoes, halved
1/2 red onion, minced
1/4 C. Cilantro, coarsely chopped
1/2 red pepper, chopped

juice of 1 lime
drizzle of olive oil
2 tsp. dijon mustard
1 tbs. reserved black bean liquid
1/2 tsp. sriracha or any hot sauce
2 tbs. prepared salsa
1 tbs. apple cider vinegar
Salt and Pepper

Combine all salad ingredients in a large bowl. Combine all of dressing ingredients in a measuring cup and whisk to combine. Pour over salad, only enough to moisten. Let sit for minimum 1 hour to  overnight. The longer this salad sits, the better it gets as all of the juices from the vegetables are released and flavor the dressing. 

*Note: I let this salad sit overnight so there was clearly enough dressing in the salad to toss with extra greens for a more filling dish. Enjoy!