Baked Brie with Cremini Mushrooms

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

According to a popular foodie website, “Puff pastry is a light, flaky pastry made by repeatedly layering pastry dough and butter or another solid fat, called laminating, to form a thin dough that puffs in the oven.” Continue reading

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2018 in the rearview mirror!

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Happy New Year 2019!

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New Year Appetizer

Classic Stuffed Mushrooms (Plated)

Classic stuffed mushrooms with Marsala wine.

Stuffed mushrooms are traditionally considered to be an Italian-American dish and are often made with breadcrumbs, Parmesan cheese, herbs and a fair helping of butter or olive oil. There are several types of mushrooms that are easy to stuff including button, crimini, and Portobello mushrooms. Continue reading

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Christmas Galette

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

A colorful and tasty appetizer for your holiday feast!

Crust Ingredients:
2 cups flour
1 teaspoon sugar
Pinch of salt
12 tablespoons cold unsalted butter
½ cup ice water

Filling Ingredients:
2 fennel bulbs (quartered)
5 medium beets (peeled and quartered)
6-8 carrots (halved lengthwise)
2 cups fresh butternut squash (peeled and cubed)
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt to taste
½ cup flat leaf parsley (chopped)
2 shallots (peeled and minced)
4-6 ounces Gorgonzola cheese (crumbled)
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

In a bowl, mix the flour with the sugar and salt. Using a pastry blender or your fingers, cut in half of the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Cut in the remaining butter. Pour in water then begin to mix and knead the dough until a ball forms and the mixture is no longer shaggy looking. Flatten the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Arrange rinsed and prepared vegetables on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and bake until the carrots are just starting to soften – about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove from oven and sprinkle with a goodly amount of sea salt. Set aside to cool.
In a mixing bowl, combine cooled vegetables, parsley, shallots, and mustard. Stir to coat. Set aside.

On a floured work surface, roll the dough out into a 12-inch round. Transfer to a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Spread a spoonful of the veggie mixture into the center of the dough. Sprinkle with Gorgonzola. Repeat layering filling and cheese until you run out of ingredients and can top with more cheese. Fold the border over to create a pleated edge (see photo).

Bake for 35-40 minutes. Cut into wedges and serve warm.

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Christmas holiday bread with cranberries, cherries, pecans, and orange zest!

Photo: Randy Graham, Valley Vegetarian

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Pappardelle with Burrata and Crushed Cherry Toms


The flavors of the burrata, roasted tomatoes, and fresh basil are a classic combination. In addition, this pasta dish looks amazing when plated. Serve with a glass of your favorite wine and I say this is a complete meal. Mangiamo! Continue reading

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