Soba Noodles with Greens and Beans
8 ounces soba (buckwheat) noodles
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
2 teaspoons fresh ginger, minced
1 tablespoon sambal chili paste
4 tablespoons tamari
½ cup vegetable broth
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1-2 leeks, washed well and sliced thin (about 2 cups)
8 ounces fresh spinach, washed and roughly chopped
¾ cup cooked black beans, rinsed and drained
Cook the soba noodles according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
In a small bowl whisk together the garlic, ginger, sambal, tamari, and vegetable broth. Set aside.
While noodles are cooking, heat a large skillet with the sesame oil over medium-high heat.
Add the leeks and sauté for 5 to 7 minutes until soft.
Add the sauce, spinach, and black beans and continue cooking until the spinach is wilted.
Add the noodles, toss together and serve hot.
Rolled Stuffed Salmon
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 large leeks (white and pale-green parts only) chopped and washed well (3 ¼ cups) — you could use sweet onions too!
1 bunch Swiss chard, tough stems trimmed, leaves chopped (6 cups)
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
½ cup plain Greek yogurt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon whole-grain mustard
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 teaspoons minced garlic
2 teaspoons soy sauce
2 ¼ pounds salmon fillet, skin removed
¼ cup packed dill sprigs, plus 6 more sprigs for tops
Extra-virgin olive oil
Preheat oven to 450 degrees F.
Melt butter in a large skillet over high.
Add leeks; cook, stirring, until just golden, about 4 minutes.
Add chard; season with salt and pepper.
Cook, tossing, until wilted, about 3 minutes. Let cool.
In a small bowl, whisk together yogurt, lemon juice, mustards, garlic, and soy sauce.
Butterfly salmon by cutting horizontally through middle along one long side, leaving other side intact. Open flat, like a book. Flip salmon, skinned-side up; season with salt and pepper.
Spread top with ¼ cup yogurt mixture.
Top with dill sprigs, then chard mixture.
With a long side facing you, roll up salmon into a tight log. Secure with 6 pieces of kitchen twine, starting about 1 ¼ inches from end and spacing evenly.
Cut salmon into 6 equal pieces, slicing between twine.
Tuck a dill sprig under twine on each roll.
Place rolls in a baking dish and drizzle with oil, rubbing to coat.
Season with salt and pepper.
Roast until salmon is opaque on outside but still pink inside, about 15 minutes.
Serve, with remaining yogurt mixture alongside.
Winter Squash, Leek, and Saffron Risotto
5-6 cups chicken stock (we cook half a celeriac, cubed, in with the rice instead)
½ teaspoon saffron threads, pulverized (optional)
3 tablespoons olive oil
½-1 cup finely chopped leeks (white and pale green sections only)
1 ½ cups arborio rice (or any white rice)
2/3 cup dry white wine
2-3 cups cooked, pureed winter squash
¾-1 cup grated Parmesan, Romano, or Asiago cheese
Salt and pepper
Bring stock and saffron to a simmer in saucepan. Heat olive oil in large, heavy saucepan. Add leeks; cook over medium-low heat until softened, several minutes. Raise heat to medium-high and stir in rice. Keep stirring rice 1-2 minutes, then add wine. Stir and cook until nearly all the wine has evaporated, about 2 minutes. Add two ladlefuls hot stock (enough to barely cover the rice); stir frequently until most is absorbed. Continue to add stock a ladleful at a time and stir very frequently until nearly absorbed. Risotto is done when rice is barely tender and mixture is creamy; this should take 25-35 minutes. (Adjust heat if rice is absorbing liquid too quickly.) Stir in squash during last 10 minutes. Fold in most of the grated cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve immediately, with a little more cheese on top of each serving. Makes 6-8 servings.
Potato Leek Soup
3 medium-sized potatoes
3 cups cleaned, chopped leeks
1 medium stalk celery, chopped
1 large carrot, chopped
4 cups water
1 ½ teaspoons salt
1 cup milk
Freshly ground black pepper
1 sprig of thyme
Scrub the potatoes and cut them into 1-inch chunks.
Place them in a soup pot with the leeks, celery, carrot, water, and salt.
Bring to a boil, cover, and cook until the potatoes are tender (about 20 minutes.)
Remove from heat, and let it cool until it’s no longer too hot to puree.
Puree the soup in a blender or a food processor.
Stir in the milk.
Add black pepper to taste, and adjust salt, if necessary.
Serve hot or cold, possibly topped with a sprinkling of fresh herbs.