Double-Salmon and Sweet Potato Hash (with Poached Egg)

2 T unsalted butter

1 lb (3 medium) red-skinned sweet potatoes (yams), peeled and cut into ½-inch cubes

2 C (2 medium) chopped leeks (white and pale part only)

1 small (½ large) red bell pepper, diced

1 t dried thyme

1 8oz. skinless salmon fillet, cut into ½-inch cubes

2 T pure maple syrup

2 t fresh sage, chopped

4 oz. slices smoked salmon, sliced

2-3 scallions, thinly sliced – for garnish

Serve with Poached Eggs

Melt the butter in a large non-stick sauté pan over low heat. Add the leeks, sweet potatoes, bell pepper and thyme; stir to coat with butter. Cover with a lid and cook untl potatoes are tender, stirring occasionally, about 8 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high. Uncover, cook without stirring until potatoes are browning on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Using a spatula, turn hash over and cook without stirring until potatoes are browning on the bottom, about 3 minutes longer. Fold in the fresh salmon cubes, sage and maple syrup. Cover with lid ajar and cook until salmon is just opaque in center, stirring occasionally, about 3 minutes. Mix in smoked salmon pieces and garnish with sliced scallions. Spoon hash onto individual plates and serve with poached egg on top. Serves 4.


Classic Tiramisù

For the cream:

4 large egg yolks

¼ C granulated sugar

¾ C heavy cream

¼ C sugar

1 C (8 ounces) mascarpone

For the assembly:

1 ½ C very strong coffee or espresso

2 T brandy, cognac or rum

2 T unsweetened cocoa powder

About 24 ladyfingers (one 7-ounce package) – can substitute stale madeleines, snickerdoodles, wafer cookies and even croissant

1 to 2 ounces bittersweet chocolate, for shaving (optional)

Using a hand-held electric beater or a standing mixer, in a medium bowl whip together the egg yolks and sugar until very pale yellow and about tripled in volume. A slight ribbon should fall from the beaters when lifted from the bowl. Set aside and prepare the mascarpone mixture.

In a medium bowl, whip the cream and sugar until it creates soft-medium peaks. Add mascarpone and continue to whip until it creates a spreadable mixture with medium peaks. Gently fold the fluffy sweetened egg yolks into the mascarpone mixture until smoothly combined. Set aside.

To assemble the tiramisu, combine the coffee and brandy in a shallow bowl. Using a sifter (or tea strainer), dust the bottom of a 2-quart baking dish (and 8×8-inch square or 9-inch round cake pan would also work) with 1 tablespoon cocoa powder. Quickly dip each ladyfinger into the coffee mixture and place them at the bottom of the baking dish. Since they are quite porous and absorb liquid easily, you will need to work quickly so they don’t fall apart. Keep filling the dish until you’ve got one even layer (about 10-12 ladyfingers). Spread half the mascarpone mixture onto the ladyfingers and repeat the process with a second layer of coffee- dipped ladyfingers and mascarpone mixture. Dust the top with the remaining 1 tablespoon cocoa. Cover with plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 8 hours or longer. Just before serving, dust with powdered sugar and garnish with shaved chocolate. Serves 6-8.


Root Vegetable Gratin

3lbs. root vegetables, mix of your choice– celery root (celeriac), rutabaga, turnip, parsnip and/or Yukon gold potatoes

2 T thyme leaves

1 ½ C half and half or cream

4 oz. Emmenthaler (Swiss) cheese, grated

Sea salt and pepper

Preheat the oven to 400°F. Peel and thinly slice the all the vegetables. In a 2-quart baking dish, layer 1/3 of the vegetables and sprinkle each layer with thyme, salt and pepper. Repeat layers; top with remaining vegetables and pour the half and half (or cream) on top. Bake, uncovered, 50-60 minutes, checking every 20 minutes to press the vegetables with a metal spatula into the cream. Once the cream is bubbling and the vegetables have begun to soften, about 40 minutes, sprinkle the top with the grated cheese. Continue to bake another 20 minutes, until the cheese is melted and is nicely browned and bubbly. Serves 6.


Persimmon and Burrata Salad with Sesame Brittle

Sesame Brittle

½ C sugar

2/3 C sesame seeds

½ t sea salt

Dressing

2 T shallots, minced

¼ C balsamic vinegar

3 T maple syrup

1/3 C extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt and pepper, to taste

Salad

5oz. baby arugula

8oz. burrata cheese (2 small balls), drained and cut into large wedges

1-2 Fuyu persimmon, thinly sliced

½ C pomegranate arils

In a very clean, heavy bottom saucepan, melt the sugar over moderate-low heat, undisturbed, until melted and golden brown (or darker, if you prefer a more robust caramel flavor), about 5 minutes. Stir in the sesame seed and immediately scrape onto a parchment-lines cookie sheet or large plate. Sprinkle with sea salt, let cool completely, then break into small pieces. Any leftover brittle can be stored in an airtight container in a cool place.

In a small bowl, whisk together the dressing ingredients, season with salt and pepper. Set aside. Mound the arugula on a platter, scatter with the persimmon slices, pomegranate seeds and burrata. Drizzle a small amount of the dressing over the salad and scatter with the sesame brittle. Serve with extra dressing on the side. Serves 4-6.


Pomegranate Moscow Mule

¼ C unflavored vodka

¼ C pomegranate juice

2 t pomegranate molasses (or pomegranate syrup, which is not as sweet)

1 T fresh lime juice

1-2 T maple syrup, to taste

¼ – ½ C Ginger Beer

Garnish –        slice of lime peel

                        Anardana powder (powdered pomegranate seeds)

Place 3-4 ice cubes in a shaker and add the vodka, pomegranate juice, pomegranate molasses, lime juice and maple syrup. Cover with shaker top and shake until well mixed. Pour into a glass with fresh ice, top with ginger beer, garnish with lime peel and (optionally) a sprinkle of Anardana powder.