Nori Salad Dressing with Pickled Veggies

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This salad is a little fussy, it’s worth it.

6 radishes, trimmed, thinly sliced
2 large carrots, peeled, julienned
1/2 English hothouse cucumber, thinly sliced
2 TBSP sugar
1 TBSp salt
1 1/4 c unseasoned rice vinegar, divided
2 toasted nori sheets
1/4 c vegetable oil
2 TBSP soy sauce
1 TBSP rice vinegar
6 c lettuce

Place radishes, carrots, and cucumber in 4 separate bowls or jars. Bring sugar, salt, 1 c vinegar, and 2 c water to a boil in a medium saucepan, stirring to dissolve sugar. Pour pickling liquid over vegetables to cover; let cool. Cover and chill.

Grind nori in a blender, scraping down sides as needed, until finely ground. Add oil, soy sauce, mirin, and remaining 1/4 cup vinegar and blend until smooth. Toss lettuces and dressing in a large bowl to coat. Drain pickled vegetables and arrange on top of salad.

Deviled Eggs with Sciracha Bacon

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Trader Joes has a new product – Sciracha Bacon Jerky – it is amazing and the perfect finishing ingredient for deviled eggs. This recipe is rough – you need to adjust to the number of eggs you want.

Ingredients:
4 hard boiled eggs
1 – 2 TBSP mayo
1 tsp smoked paprika
Salt and pepper
1 package of TJ’s Sciracha bacon jerky

Cut eggs in half, dump yolks in a small bowl. Add mayo and mash until smooth. Blend in paprika, salt and pepper, taste and adjust as needed.

Spoon into the egg whites and top with chopped bacon jerky.

Foie on Toast with Cherry Salad

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I love Foie Gras and the best thing about it is it cooks up so quickly. It is illegal to sell it in California, so you need to get creative about how you obtain it.

Ingredients:
2 2 oz slices of Foie gras
1/4 c bing cherries (frozen defrosted or fresh)
1 TBSP high quality balsamic vinegar
1 TBSP hazel nut oil
1/4 c toasted hazelnuts, chopped
Salt and pepper
Butter lettuce, torn
Balsamic glaze
Brioche or parmesan toast

Combine the balsamic vinegar, oil, salt and pepper in a small jar and shake to combine. Toss with salad, cherries and nuts.

Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat. Add Foie and cook 30 – 40 seconds per side.

Serve with salad and toast and drizzle with a little balsamic glaze.

Serves 2.

Cheese Baked Gnocchi with Spinach

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Baby it’s cold outside and I wanted something warm and comforting for dinner. I had a pack of gnocchi and went to epicurious for some inspiration and this is what resulted, cheesy gnocchi with a panko crunchy top. Best of all, dinner in less than 20 minutes!

Ingredients:
1 package shelf stable gnocchi
2/3 c half and half
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/2 tsp pepper
1 bag of baby spinach
1 tsp flour
6 oz ricotta
3 oz shredded mozzarella
1/4 c panko

Cook gnocchi according to package.

Preheat oven to 425.

In a 12 inch oven proof skillet, heat half and half, salt, pepper, nutmeg and flour over medium heat, whisking. Continue to whisk until it starts to bubble then reduce heat and add spinach. Once spinach wilts remove from heat. Add gnocchi, stir to coat the gnocchi. Drop the ricotta in blobs and smoky over top. Sprinkle with mozzarella and panko.

Place pan in skillet and cook for 4 – 7 minutes – until bubble and brown on top. Keep an eye on it, panko can burn quickly.

Serves 4 – 6.