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Seasonal food blog of Chef Deborah at Cuvée at The Greenporter Hotel

Crispy Crostini to make your cheese tray very special

March 16th, 2014 · No Comments · Brunch, Christmas, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dinner, Easter, Entertaining, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Greenport, Hanukkah, Holiday, Italian, Kosher, Long Island Wine, Lunch, New Year's, New York City, North Fork, Passover, Preserves, Side Dishes, Snack, Soups & Bisques, The baking corner, Tips, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes, the baking corner

For any of you who bake bread, you know how much time goes into it. This is why leftover baguettes or sourdough from last night’s dinner should never be thrown away. This leftover bread can be made into the most delicious additions to your next meal in the form of golden croutons or crostini for the enjoyment of your family or guests.

These are a perfect topping to a Caesar salad or adornment for a cheese plate and bowls of soup and in the event they are not devoured that night, you can plop them in the food processor on the pulse function for homemade bread crumbs for meatballs.

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Cauliflower & Purple Potato Winter Casserole

March 16th, 2014 · No Comments · Allergies, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Greenport, Kosher, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, New York City, Side Dishes, Tips, Travels, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes

Winter should not put a damper on your farm to table selections for meatless Monday dinners.

The theme of this weekend’s cooking class was healthful meatless cooking with winter farm stand vegetables and our guests included a collection of lovely 20-somethings. They were celebrating a birthday and also getting some recipe and menu ideas for a shower they are planning for one of their friends.

Our menu consisted of: Spring Onion and Celery bisque, Cauliflower & Purple potato casserole and homemade crunchy crostini with a garden cheese plate complete with herb bouquets. We paired this spread with a crisp, aromatic Pinot Blanc from Lieb Cellars. The casserole combines the purple potatoes and cauliflower with fresh herbs and olive oil and gets a layer of creamy Greek yogurt on top along with turmeric and sea salt which forms a cheesy crust and is surprisingly filling.

Ingredients and Nutritional information
Between the cauliflower and purple potatoes, the menu is vitamin and fiber-packed. Cauliflower is an excellent source of vitamin C, and a very good source of magnesium, cauliflower provides us with core conventional antioxidants.

The featured Purple potato, botanical name Solanum andigenumis, is the star of the casserole, as its health properties extend far beyond the conventional white potato.
Unlike white potatoes, Purple potatoes are rich in the antioxidant (cancer preventing) called anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is found in blue, red and purple produce such as berries and pomegranates with immune system boosting properties.
See more about this potato here.

An anti oxidant and inflammatory medicinal root related to the ginger family that is often used in cooking as a substitute for saffron. For more information visit The American Cancer Society.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

1 lb of purple potatoes
1/2 head of cauliflower
2 or 3 shallots
1/2 of olive oil
1 cup of Greek yogurt
Sea salt
Fresh herbs of choice
Nuts for topping
Flavored oil for topping

Trim and cut cauliflower head in half

Section florets and blanch

Set aside

Rinse and dry purple potatoes, do not peel

Section in quarters and boil in salt water until tender and strain. Set aside.

Mince two large shallots in two separate pans and sauté in EVOO with the potatoes in one and cauliflower in the other along with a teaspoons of fresh herbs.

Use casserole dish and line the bottom with the potatoes and the top with the cauliflower. Spread a layer of Greek yogurt on top and sprinkle with turmeric and a drizzle of flavored oil. A dash of sea salt or nuts is optional.

Bake in the oven for 40 minutes and allow to rest for 15 minutes before serving.

If having a meatless meal, serve with a cheese plate with crostini or otherwise as a side dish with rotisserie chicken.

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Fresh Garden Stock anytime of year!

January 22nd, 2014 · 1 Comment · Allergies, Christmas, City Cooking, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Gardening, Greenport, Kosher, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, New York City, North Fork, Preserves, Side Dishes, Soups & Bisques, Spring Recipes, Summer, Summer Recipes, Thanksgiving, Tips, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes, canning

There are few things as important as fresh stock yet is is so rarely made made in the U.S. that when someone mentions the word “bouillon” we think about a cube in a package when bouillon is the French word for stock.

Culinary great, Alain Ducasse says “Le bouillon est la base de la cuisine” when discussing the importance of stock in cuisine in an interview with Vogue Magazine. During the summers I pick fresh herbs at my restaurant and take cuttings of celery, corn cobs and and other vegetables for court bouillons. During the winter, I like richer stocks and use leftover vegetable peels and cuttings from seasonal vegetables like leeks and mushrooms along with some bay leaves along with peppercorns and parsley (a friend of mine in Greenport has parsley peaking out through the snow) for a longer boil. You can makes these stocks during the weekend to use it in soups, braises and risottos during the week.

1/2 cup of carrot peels and trimmings
1/2 cup of celery trimmings including leaves
One whole small onion
Parsley stems
One tomato or pieces of assorted tomatoes (whatever is leftover)
A few peppercorns
2 to 3 bay leaves
One teaspoon of olive oil
One quart of water

Add teaspoon of olive oil into stock pot and heat.  Quickly add all peels and trimmings and stir.  This releases the aromas and will make a richer stock.  You can add other herbs but be careful because stronger herbs like rosemary, basil or sage can take over the stock and make it less versatile.

Once the trimmings and peels begin to sauté, add your water and boil for 20 minutes.

Remove stock from heat and set aside.  Allow to cool for at least 15 minutes.  Strain through colander into a pitcher.  This will make it easy to pour into ice cube tray or other containers.

This will reduce and give you about a half quart of vegetable stock which will keep between 2 to 4 days or up to a month if frozen in ice trays, then removed in cubes and stored in zip lock bags.

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Standing rib roast au jus: The gift that keeps on giving

January 17th, 2014 · No Comments · Breakfast, Brunch, Chocolate, Christmas, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dinner, Gardening, Greenport, Grilling, Holiday, Long Island Wine, New York City, North Fork, Tips, Wine, Winter Recipes

Whether the holidays are ahead of us or behind us, we should always have a reason to celebrate, regardless of the time of year. When I think about a special meal, I think about a gorgeous standing rib roast or “entrecote de boeuf” along with a spread of side dishes and freshly baked Yorkshire puddings. Whether it is dressed up for Sunday dinner or dressed down over candlelight for a romantic evening, it will ensure that you are forever loved. Check out the photo below of prime rib for two that my friend Ron DiGennaro and his gourmand accomplice, Joe Frevola presented to their dates over the holidays.

The first thing is to buy the right amount of meat from a good butcher. When securing the portion you need, make sure your butcher trims and ties it for you. If you want a more formal presentation, you can ask him to “French” the ribs but some might object (such as husbands or canines).

Portions will depend on how much your guests eat in general, how many side dishes you are serving and whether or not you are serving an appetizer.
• two to four (4) people – three lb. rib roast (do not buy less than a 3lb. roast — otherwise just make Ribeye steaks on the grill)
•six (6) people – four lb. rib roast
• eight (8) people – five lb. rib roast
•ten (10) people – six lb. rib roast
•twelve (12) people – eight lb. rib roast
Do not wash the meat EVER and make sure that you pat the meat dry before seasoning in the event of condensation from keeping overnight in the refrigerator.
You will find a litany of discourse on the internet about salting vs. not salting a rib roast prior to roasting. I find that salting prior to roasting works best for my taste. In my opinion, it is a good thing that the salt draws moisture from the roast which elevates the flavor in the same manner as dry aging. I advise to salt to taste using about 1/4 teaspoon per 1.5 lbs. The initial sear on high heat will make for a juicy roast. When I make this at the restaurant, I sear it on the grill before roasting the oven.
In a small bowl, combine salt, coarse pepper, dry mustard (1/4 per 1.5 lbs), 1/4 cup of olive oil or melted butter, small amount of minced, smashed garlic (do not overdo the garlic), a schmear of horseradish and a dash of Thyme leaves and brush mixture over the meat. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight.
Remove the roast from the refrigerator at least hours before you plan to cook it in order to bring it up to room temperature before cooking it. Heat oven or grill to 500 degrees. I like to sear the outside of the roast on a grill or very large pan before roasting roasting in the oven at 375 degrees. Otherise set the roast, rib-side down (the rib acts as a rack), in a heavy, shallow roasting pan. Roast for 15 minutes at this high heat to form a crust, then reduce heat to 375 degrees. You will cook this about 15 minutes per lb (while basting it every 15 minutes) or until it reaches 120 to 125 degrees at the widest point of the roast with an instant read thermometer. Remove roast to a cutting board rack down and let rest for at least 15 minutes before carving. You will be tempted to leave the roast in the oven longer but don’t do it. The roast keeps cooking long after you remove it and it is easy to end up with an overcooked and potentially dry roast.
Pour off all but 2 tablespoons of fat from the roasting pan. Set pan on stove over medium heat. Add on cup of red wine and simmer for about 10 minutes until juices begin to darken and add additional seasoning to taste. Add sauteed mushrooms from the Long Island Mushroom Co. and shallots to the jus and pour into a gravy boat. Serve with brussel sprouts, string beans, asparagus or carrots if going lighter for a romantic meal and add your favorite Yorkshire pudding recipe if serving for a family meal.

Dessert for a meal like this should be kept simple like an assortment of your favorite chocolates and some Port of more red wine.

Currently we are pairing some of our steak dishes at Cuvee with a Merlot from Coffee Pot Cellars. The dark fruit in this Merlot stands up to the flavor of beef without challenging it. The soft tannins and earthiness is a great accompaniment to our steak frites and the Steak du Campagne sandwich with our mushroom and fresh herb “French dip” sauce. And it also tastes great with chocolate!

This meat will exhibit all of its beefy flavor the next day with mustard and rye bread for sandwiches or with eggs and home fries for brunch.

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The Hangover: smoothie fixer upper

December 27th, 2013 · No Comments · Allergies, Breakfast, Christmas, City Cooking, Cocktail, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Gardening, Holiday, Kosher, Low-Calorie, New Year's, Preserves, Tips, Vegan, Vegetarian

Most of us overdo it around the holidays and even my most responsible friends have been known to have an extra glass of champagne…or five–during this time of the year. I was in search of redemption this morning after a great time with friends and family over the last few days — well, really the last few weeks since it all started with Thanksgiving. Too much rich food, too many cocktails, and not enough time to keep up with workouts have all contributed to my lethargy. We all still need energy to welcome in the New Year so I reach for the blender to make a garden smoothie.

Smoothies offer a quick nutrition with detoxifying and digestion properties. I learned to perfect my smoothies at the Ann Wigmore Institute in Puerto Rico last year.

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Tips for a low-stress party from the events team at The Greenporter Hotel

December 16th, 2013 · 1 Comment · Chocolate, Christmas, City Cooking, Cocktail, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dessert, Dinner, Drinks & Cocktails, Entertaining, Events, Greenport, Hanukkah, Holiday, Mojito, New York City, Side Dishes, Tips, Wine, Winter Recipes

The holidays are here and many of us attend several parties and host friends and family at our own gatherings. In addition to shopping, travel and holiday stress, we can forget we are celebrating. At The Greenporter Hotel we go to great lengths to secure every detail so that we can enjoy our time with guests who are having fun because of good planning. As a host or hostess, you want to cover as many details in advance so that you can appreciate your own party and cherish the holiday season.

Event Planning Tips

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Turkey Breast en Croute for Thanksgiving

November 27th, 2013 · 1 Comment · Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Greenport, Holiday, Long Island Wine, Side Dishes, Wine

I make several of these stuffed turkey breasts en Croute every year. they are great for smaller families or for those of us a bit more interested in stuffing rather than the turkey itself.

Preparing for Thanksgiving can be stressful for any cook: experienced or otherwise. The turkey, the stuffing and the gravy – the holy trinity as far as I am concerned. I could even live without the turkey if I have really good gravy, stuffing and sides but let’s face it: you have to have a turkey unless you are specifically hosting a vegetarian Thanksgiving.

A three-pound turkey breast will feed up to four with everyone having seconds or you can get a smaller one for two. Just be sure to make enough stuffing, gravy and other sides. If you have a whole turkey, cut out the breasts for this recipe and use the legs and thighs for gravy and a delicious soup, sopa de tortilla, to feed a crowd over the weekend.
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North Fork Scallop Season Recipe: Coquilles St. Jacques Cuvee

November 21st, 2013 · No Comments · Brunch, Christmas, City Cooking, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dinner, Easter, Entertaining, Events, Gone fishing, Greenport, Holiday, Long Island Wine, New Year's, New York City, North Fork, Pasta, Scallops, Seafood, Thanksgiving, Tips, Travels, Wine, Winter Recipes

One of the most exciting culinary happenings on the North Fork is the beginning of scallop season.

I remember the first time I ate one of these petite bivalves, as it sat perched in its shell while I was on a fishing excursion with a group of foodie friends.

Sweet, briny, creamy flesh, the size of a nickel, perched in their beautiful fan-like shell of St. James, for which these treats are named are the highlight of our winter menu.

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Feast of the 7 fishes: Smoked mussels Spanish style

November 18th, 2013 · No Comments · Christmas, Cocktail, Columbus Day, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dinner, Drinks & Cocktails, Entertaining, Events, Holiday, Low-Calorie, New Year's, Preserves, Vegetarian, canning

I lived in Spain for many years and I continue to be inspired by memories of the delicious snack times al fresco in our garden. I dream about the “merienda” or “the noonish time snack” before the ubiquitous 3pm lunchtime. The clinking of glasses during the “tapas” hour in the early evenings with wine or sherry to help make it through to the late dinners served at 10 and 11pm is fresh on my mind as I think about all those little plates.

That is why I find it funny that although New York offers every culinary adventure, I never see those delicious smoked mussels with tomato, “mejillas ahumados con tomate” on menus so I make them myself at home and for the restaurant at The Greenporter Hotel. I think these are a great option for a holiday or party appetizer during any season or as one of the seafood dishes for your Christmas Eve “Feast of the Seven Fishes”. Recently some lovely customers visited us from Connecticut and asked the the recipe. This is for you!

Smoking the mussels

1 lb. of fresh mussels (I prefer the smaller PEIs but larger Maine mussels are fine for smoking as well). Wash, debeard and dry to prepare for seasoning.

Seasoning: Place mussels in a large bowl, add 1 teaspoon of smoked paprika, 1/4 spoon of sea salt, 1 tablespoon of extra virgin olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon of onion powder and a pinch of red pepper chili flakes. Toss thoroughly to coat the shells getting them ready to smoke.

Using a box style stove top smoker, add 2 tablespoons of hickory chips under the smoking plate and place seasoned mussels, complete with placing shells on top of the plate, filling the box one inch from the top.

Slide on the top of the lid so that it fits snugly. Turn the flame on low and smoke for 15 minutes.

Uncover, allow to cool and place in fridge to chill. Save the liquid from the mussels for serving. Once chilled. remove from the shell, placing one mussel in half a shell and fill with chopped fresh tomato with herbs and finely minced shallots. Pour the liquid from the mussels over the top and serve. This is the time to use one of those beautiful serving platters you received as a wedding or anniversary gift. Garnish with fresh parsley or cilantro and some lemon wedges.

This dish is delicious with a bit of White Sangria made with some fruit local white or even your favorite sparkling.

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Hot Apple butter for an Autumn or holiday treat

November 14th, 2013 · No Comments · Allergies, Breakfast, Brunch, Christmas, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dessert, Dietary Restrictions, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Greenport, Hanukkah, Holiday, Kosher, Long Island Wine, New York City, North Fork, Preserves, Snack, Thanksgiving, Tips, Travels, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes, canning, the baking corner

With the holidays around the corner, many of us will have overnight guests and will have to provide breakfast and snacks.

Last week I made Apple latkes on our terrace at The Greenporter Hotel. The apple latkes are like potato pancakes but instead of grated potato, I use grated apple. The flour and eggs are just a binder for the apple so that the apple flavor really comes through. I served these latkes with a hot apple butter last week for our Taste North Fork event and here is the recipe that you can use on a regular pancakes, french toast or even ice cream for dessert.

Recipe and ingredients
2 cups of fresh grated or cubed apples (I just used the leftover grated apple from Woodside Orchards from the apple latkes)
1 cup of pure maple syrup
1 stick of salted butter

Add Maple syrup to a saucepan, add the grated apple and heat. Add stick of butter and melt. Pour into a thermos to serve hot. This also makes a great holiday gift when poured into mason jars for canning and tied with ribbons.

Serve this with hot apple cider, hard Apple Cider or Apple Wine from Wolffer Estate Vineyards. Perfect for Chanukah, Thanksgiving or Christmas brunch.

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