Author: Cosentino, Chris
Date published: March 1, 2012
Menu for 8
ARTICHOKES WITH MINr AND LEMON
SPRING LAMB ROASTED WITH MINT AND GARLIC
EGG AND ANtHOVY CROSTINI
STRAWBERRIES WITH BALSAMIC AND BLACK PEPPER
Recipes adapted from Beginnings: My Way to Start a Meal (Olive Press; $25) by Chris Cosentino, due out in May.
Artichokes with mint and lemon
SERVES 6 TO 8 I 30 MINUTES
Because this is such asimple salad, it's important to use super-fresh vegetables and top-quality olive oil and cheese.
½ lemon, plus 3 tbsp. juice
10 baby artichokes
5 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
½ tsp. sea salt
¼ tSp. pepper
8 oz. wild or baby arugula
¼ cup torn mint leaves
Wedge of parmigiano-reggiano cheese
1. Fill a large bowl halfway with cold water and squeeze in juice from ?2 lemon. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, break off outer leaves at the base. Continue removing leaves until only innermost tender yellow leaves remain. Cut artichokes crosswise and discard prickly tips. Trim all but 1 in. of stem, then trim outer layer of stem and the base to remove any dark green bits. Put into lemon water.
2. Mix remaining 3 tbsp. lemon juice, the oil, salt, and pepper in a bowl. Working with 1 artichoke at a time, blot dry, then shave lengthwise with a mandoline or a vegetable peeler into the oil mixture.
3. Add arugula and mint to artichokes; toss to coat. Divide salad among plates, then shave cheese over each.
PER SERVING 150 CAL, 69Ü (l04 CAL.) FROM FAT; 6.2 G PROTEIN; 12 G FAT (3.6 G SAT.); 7.3 G CARBO (3.6 G FIBER); 242 MG SODIUM; 9.5 MG CHOL.
Spring lamb roasted with mint and garlic
SERVES 8 I 1 HOUR
We doubled this recipe so it could serve as a main course. Lamb loins are amazingly tender and flavorful but also expensive; we found that cheaper lamb shoulder roast (although tougher) works too. Just cook it a little longer - about 10 minutes more.
½ cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
½ cup minced yellow onion
1 salt-packed anchovy, rinsed and minced
3 tbsp. chopped mint leaves
Zest of 1 lemon
½ tsp. each sea salt and pepper
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 boned lamb loins (4 lbs.)
1 garlic head, cut in half crosswise
1 bunch mint, ends trimmed
1. Make butter: Put ingrethents into bowl of a mixer and beat until smooth.
2. Prepare lamb: Preheat oven to 425°. Heat a large cast-iron frying pan over high heat until very hot. Add oil and swirl pan to coat. Put lamb in center of pan. Put garlic halves on either side of lamb, cut sides up, and lay mint over garlic. Cook lamb, turning once, until well browned, about 4 minutes on each side.
3. Put pan with lamb in oven to roast until meat reaches 125° on a meat thermometer, 12 to 14 minutes for medium-rare.
4. Transfer lamb to a cutting board and tent with foil. Let rest 10 minutes before slicing. Serve with mint and garlic on the side and a dollop of anchovy butter on the warm lamb slices.
PER SERVING 647 CAL., 70% (456 CAL.) FROM FAT; 41 G PROTEIN; 51 G FAT (23 G SAT.); 4.7 G CARBO (O.B G FIBER); 227 MG SODIUM; 139 MG CHOL.
Egg and anchovy crostini
SERVES 8 I 35 MINUTES
Instead of using ordinary canned anchovies, Chris Cosentino uses marinated white anchovies, which have a fresher, cleaner taste. They're a staple ingrethent at Incanto, his San Francisco restaurant.
4 extra-large eggs
12-in. length of baguette (2Vz to 3 in. wide), split lengthwise
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
16 marinated white anchovy fillets*
2 tbsp. roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp. chive pieces (about Vz in. long)
1. Fill a bowl with ice water and salt. Bring a saucepan of water to a boil and lower in eggs with a spoon; cook 6V2 minutes for a softly set egg. Transfer eggs to salted ice water (salt helps the shells come off more easily) and cool completely, about 5 minutes. Peel eggs and set aside.
2. Preheat broiler with a rack set 4 in. from heat. Brush baguette with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste. Toast bread, turning once, until warm and golden brown, about 5 minutes. Rub cut side of bread with whole lemon to extract oils from peel.
3. Use a 1 ½-in. round cutter to cut 4 evenly spaced holes in each baguette half, or use a knife and scoop out with a spoon. Slice bread crosswise between holes into 8 pieces.
4. Cut eggs in half crosswise and set an egg into each hole. Sprinkle eggs with salt and pepper. Lay 2 anchovies over each and sprinkle with parsley and chives.
* Find m well-stocked grocery stores or Italian markets, or substitute good-quality regular canned or jarred anchovies that you've tossed in a little sherry vinaigrette.
PER SERVING 179 CAL., 35% (62 CAL.) FROM FAT; 9.9 G PROTEIN; 7.1 G FAT (l.6 G SAT.); 20 G CARBO (1.1 G FIBER); 546 MG SODIUM; 125 MG CHOL.
Chris suggests asimpk sprrng dessert of quartered strawbernes driz zted wtth aged batsamic vrnegar and afew grinds of black pepper
PASTA DINNERS IN A FLASH: sunset.com/pasta
And to drink? TryChris Cosentmo's Italian wine picks, or our from-the-West alternatives
FOR EGG CROSTINI A not overly yeasty Chardonnaystyle sparkling wine, with nice purity of fruit.
ITALIAN: Ca' del Bosco Cuvée Prestige Brut NV (franciacorta; i40)
WESTERN: Iron Horse 2006 Ocean Reserve (Green Valley of Russian River Valley; (40)
FOR SALAD A crisp white with great minerality and high acidity, both requirements for the artichokes.
ITALIAN: Benito Ferrara 2009 "Vigna Cicogna" Greco di Tufo (Tu/oj $25)
WESTERN: Mayacamas 2008 Sauvignon Blanc (Alt. Veeder-Napa Valley; $25)
FOR ROAST LAMB A nice earthy red, with flavors of dried flowers, cherries, and tea leaves.
ITALIAN: Bonavita 2008 (Jaro; $38)
WESTERN: Palmina 2006 Nebbiolo (Santa Barbara County; $30)
FOR STRAWBERRY DESSERT A sweet, slightly fizzy dessert wine with bright berry and rose-petal qualities.
ITALIAN: Bava 2010 "Rosetta" (Malvasia di Castelnuovo Don Bosco; $20)
WESTERN: Mumm Napa NV "Cuvée M" (Nafta Valley; $22)