Friday, August 31, 2018

Flashback Friday - Milan

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on June 6, 2012.

Note: I always have fun writing somewhat snarky posts. Milan closed a few years ago.
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Earlier in the year I paid $39 for a Travelzoo voucher worth $129 at Milan. Other local bloggers had an opportunity to eat there for free shortly after the restaurant opened in early 2010. From photos and descriptions of the place, Milan seemed rather high-concept for Little Italy, and I wasn't sure such a place would make it in that neighborhood. I was still curious to try it out, so we paid a visit toward the end of May.

Wow. Where should I begin?

I'll begin with first impressions. Stepping into the restaurant, I was immediately struck by a smell. No, not of garlic and shellfish, nor of long-simmered tomato sauce, but of bathroom. A nasty chlorine+potty smell. Granted, we were the first people in the restaurant, and possibly when there are more people in the place and the kitchen is in full swing, the smell isn't noticeable. But it's really off-putting for that to be the first sensation encountered. (I eventually got used to it.)

Once upstairs on the main floor, I saw that the glossy veneer from two years ago, when the restaurant was new, has faded. The black paint on the wood floor is worn off in paths, the paint on the ceiling has bubbled and cracked, and the tables and chairs show wear. One of the high-backed chairs, which doesn't quite match the others, is patched up with white tape. I'm guessing that the intended effect of the stark white decor with touches of scarlet is "modern" and "classy." And I suppose it is. Classy like a strip club with bottle service. It's a place where Pauly D and The Situation would be completely at ease, hanging out one on of the lounges covered with upholstery straight out of a '72 Nova.

We were greeted by a tiny woman with masses of long black hair. She was wearing a skin-tight, very short skirt and sleeveless top, looking more like a nightclub patron than a restaurant hostess. Turns out she was our waitress. And the other waitresses in the place were similarly attired. Call me old, but I find it tacky when people who are serving food are required to be sexed up in that way. Were the place truly classy, the servers would be wearing crisp white or black button-down shirts and dark trousers, perhaps with a long apron. But maybe that's just me.

Or maybe the place just isn't classy.

Recently there's been some stink in Little Italy about how Milan is really a nightclub and not a restaurant. And the neighborhood, largely residential, is not zoned for such an enterprise. Nor, I imagine, do the residents look favorably upon the noise, or the clientele. And I can understand completely.

Enough with the bad stuff. Let's move to the food, which is the only thing I'm (somewhat) qualified to judge.

We ordered from a special menu that listed two salads, two appetizers, and a handful of entrees. Despite the limited choices, I was glad to see that we were not given the regular menu, on which the prices are annoyingly expressed in Euros as well as dollars. For absolutely no reason at all. I wish I had written things down in more detail, because I don't think the menu descriptions were accurate. Doesn't matter, really. The food was good, starting with the plate of crostini served with a warm dip of fiercely-garlicky seasoned olive oil, a bagna cauda.

Salads came next. Mr Minx chose the more simple green salad, and I had the Cesare Diablo. Here's where the menu descriptions come in question.

Mescolato Verdi
We think the menu said Mr Minx's salad came with dried cherries, but they were clearly dried cranberries. No biggie. My salad, however, had the word "diablo" in the name. Not reading the description fully led me to believe that the dressing would be spicy, but it was not. The online menu gives the impression that there should have been deviled eggs with the salad, but there were none. So I'm still trying to figure out that whole "diablo" thing.

Cesare Diavolo
Clearly, however, the salad did not need those ugly winter tomatoes. That said, I appreciate that Mr Minx's green salad had been carefully dressed in the kitchen with a perfect amount of creamy herbal dressing. My salad had been composed, so the drizzle of dressing on top was fine. As long as the dressing is not on the side, I'm happy. And the flavors of both were really pretty good.

For our appetizers, Mr Minx had a small wedge of crisp polenta topped with a chunk of mild Italian sausage on a plate drizzled with three sauces: a creamy red pepper sauce, one flavored with balsamic vinegar, and another with basil. It looked pretty and tasted very good. We couldn't really figure out how the polenta was so crispy yet had no color other than the brilliant yellow of cornmeal.

My calamari was scented with Old Bay, but really didn't taste of it. The puffy little rings were lightly battered and perfectly cooked, and I preferred them dipped in the leftover bagna cauda than in the light marinara that came with it.

Two good courses so far. And then we received a bizarre intermezzo. Rather than the usual palate-cleansing bit of tart sorbet, we received shot glasses filled with palate-coating pink whipped cream and a few bits of strawberry. It actually tasted pretty good, despite being super-sweet, but would have made a better dessert.

Mr Minx had chosen ravioli for his entree, and he was presented with a long platter of what appeared to be lasagna noodles covered in an unfortunate-looking sauce. The restaurant manager, who had been hovering nearby the whole time, stated that the ravioli were "deconstructed." Ok. In any case, the noodles were layered with bits of sundried tomato, basil, and bits and bobs of grilled chicken. The sauce, which I expected to taste like Thousand Island, was extremely rich and pretty much tomato-flavored heavy cream. That's not a bad thing, necessarily. It was a bit too much for me, but hubby happily scarfed it up.

My entree was a risotto topped with chunks of meltingly-tender lamb and soft slabs of onion in a savory gravy and a goodly amount of shaved parmesan cheese. The risotto was a little clumpy, but then so is mine. I really enjoyed the stew-like topping and wished there was more of it, but it was just as well - after a generous sample of Mr Minx's dish, I couldn't finish my own.

Dessert was forgettable. My cheesecake, served on a plate that seemed to be decorated with a melted version of the strawberry intermezzo, was fluffy and fine, but hubby's chocolate cake was terrible. Clearly obtained from a commercial bakery, it was cloyingly sweet and even a bit crunchy from excess sugar. It tasted more of chemicals than chocolate. Also included in the price of the meal were two glasses of wine apiece, which translated to two servings of about two ounces of unremarkable swill.

At the end of the meal, we were presented with a tab for $2.49, which included .15 sales tax. I didn't understand it, considering that my voucher stated that the meal included all food and beverages, but I left a couple of bucks extra on the table with the tip to take care of it.

So. I really don't know what to think about Milan. The food we ate was mostly pretty good. If you take away the sweet stuff, it was really good. Our server was quite lovely, very attentive, and I felt bad that she had to lug such heavy plates out of the kitchen, considering her wee size. The decor was, to me, sad, and out of place in the neighborhood. Perhaps if the restaurant had been set up a few blocks to the south, in Harbor East, and if the furnishings were a bit more expensive-looking, Milan could compete with Pazo for an audience of hip and pretty people who like to eat.

As we were headed out the door, we noticed what looked to be a somewhat grizzled neighborhood guy sitting at the bar. A young couple with a toddler were waiting to be seated. These are the people who frequent (and live in) Little Italy, and the people that Milan should be catering to. If they want to be a dance club, they should probably move elsewhere. If they're going to stay, they should keep the chef, get rid of the rickety tables and the bottle service, and for god's sake, switch to a lemon-scented bathroom cleaner.

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Friday, August 24, 2018

Flashback Friday - Coconut Curd

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on October 17, 2012.
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I love lemon curd. And lime curd. Especially if it's homemade. And it's so easy to make, there's really no excuse to buy ready made curd from the store (plus, the jarred stuff just isn't creamy/custardy enough). Basically, any fruit juice can be made into a curd (but I wouldn't try pineapple or papaya, in case their special enzymes do weird things to eggs), so why not coconut milk?

Turns out, it works beautifully. The result is like a jam version of coconut custard pie, terrific on everything from toast to oatmeal, but perfect eaten directly from a spoon.

Coconut Curd

4 large egg yolks
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2/3 cup coconut milk (or one 5.5oz can)
6 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces

Whisk together egg yolks and sugar until combined. Place in a saucepan and stir in the coconut milk. Cook over medium heat, whisking constantly, until mixture is thick enough to coat a wooden spoon, about eight minutes. Remove pan from the heat and whisk in the butter, one piece at a time, until each piece is completely absorbed.

Store in a covered jar. Eat within 2 weeks.

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Monday, August 20, 2018

Hu Kitchen Chocolate

Chocolate is life, right? And because I love chocolate so much, I was excited to be asked to promote Hu Kitchen's chocolate bars. The 70% stone ground dark chocolate hits all the right notes with me: it's made from organic, fair-trade cacao beans and contains no GMOs, emulsifiers, or soy lecithin. It's also vegan, gluten-free, and contains no dairy or refined sugar. There are bars stuffed with hazelnut, cashew, or almond butters, made crispy with quinoa and crunchy with cacao nibs, but also plain and salted bars. My favorite to eat out of hand is the almond butter + puffed quinoa bar, but I knew if the chocolate was that good for snacking on its own, it would be terrific for baking.

So I made chocolate chip cookies. Giant ones. I usually don't make them that large, but I really wanted the chocolate to stand out.

I think it does, don't you?

This recipe makes 6 large cookies, but you can make smaller ones if you so desire, just break the chocolate into smaller bits. Definitely don't omit the sea salt.

Giant Chocolate Chunk Cookies

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 large egg
1 cup + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 2.1oz Hu Kitchen chocolate bars, salty or simple or one of each
Handful of chopped nuts (optional, I used almonds)
Maldon sea salt

Put the melted butter and sugars in a large bowl and stir with a wooden spoon to combine. Add the vanilla and egg and stir again. Dump in the flour, baking soda, and salt and mix well until all of the flour is incorporated.

Break 1 of the chocolate bars into small pieces and stir into the batter along with the nuts, if using. Refrigerate this mixture for at least one hour, until firm.

Preheat oven to 350°F. Divide dough into six evenly sized balls and place on parchment lined cookie sheets at least 4 inches apart. (I put four cookies on a standard sheet and two more on a smaller pan.) Take the other chocolate bar and break apart the segments, then cut each segment into two pieces. Press about half of the chocolate into the balls of dough. Reserve the rest for later.

Bake the cookies for 14-16 minutes, until golden brown. If using two baking sheets, about halfway through, rotate the pans and move the top sheet to the lower rack and vice versa.

Remove the cookies on the parchment to cooling racks. Press the remaining chocolate pieces into the cookies while they are still warm. Sprinkle each with a generous pinch of the sea salt.

Allow to cool completely before eating.

Makes six large cookies.

* Any products in this post that are mentioned by name may have been provided to Minxeats by the manufacturer. However, all opinions belong to Minxeats. Amazon links earn me $! Please buy!

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Friday, August 17, 2018

Flashback Friday - Thai-style Crab Cakes

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on July 6, 2012.
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Sometimes I have a hankering for crab, and on those days, even mediocre crab will do. I have found that in the world of mediocre crab (the canned stuff that Phillips puts out, for instance), claw meat tends to have the most flavor. It's also more reasonably priced than lump. I bought a can of crab claw meat for the okonomiyaki I made a couple of weeks back, but didn't use all of it. The rest became crab cakes.

Our Thai basil was growing like gangbusters, so I thought I'd make a cake with Thai flavors: lemongrass; red curry paste; basil. I realized I should probably use a bit of breading, since claw meat tends to be on the moist side. I didn't want to use up the bit of bread earmarked for Mr Minx's lunch the next day, so grabbed the next carby thing I found - a box of corn Chex.

It worked quite well. After a long rest in the fridge, the cakes stayed together in the pan, and they formed a nice crispy crust, too.

My favorite thing about using Chex as a crust: getting out my frustrations by beating on them with a meat tenderizer.

Thai-Spiced Crab Cakes

2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1 tablespoon Thai Kitchen red curry paste
1 teaspoon lemongrass paste
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
12 ounces crab claw meat
1/2 cup Thai basil, cut into a fine chiffonade
1/2 cup crushed Corn Chex cereal
salt and pepper to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil

In a large bowl, mix together mayo, red curry paste, lemongrass, and Sriracha. Fold in crab, basil, and cereal. Add salt and pepper to taste. Form into 6-8 patties. Refrigerate for several hours; overnight is best.

Heat oil in a large saute pan. Add crab cakes. Cook for 10-12 minutes, turning over once, until heated through and browned on both sides.

Serve with peanut sauce.

Peanut Sauce

2 tablespoons creamy peanut butter
1/2 teaspoon Sriracha
1 teaspoon lemongrass paste
1 tablespoon milk
lime juice
1 tablespoon chopped scallions

Warm peanut butter in a microwave safe bowl or ramekin until runny. Stir in Sriracha, lemongrass, and milk. Add enough lime juice to create a drizzle-able texture (3 tablespoons or so). Stir in scallions.

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Flashback Friday - Panzanella

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on June 1, 2012.
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There's just something a bit...unctuous...about TV chef Nick Stellino. He's handsome, slick, and smooth, and we don't care to watch his show regularly. But once in a while, when there's nothing else on, or we've got a half hour to kill between shows, we'll tune in. Recently, he made a panzanella that inspired me to whip up a similar version for dinner. I liked that he made a creamy dressing using feta cheese and tomatoes. While we did have tomatoes (two of them, to be exact), I preferred to use them in the salad itself and put a bit of tomato paste in the dressing. It was really quite delicious, and I dare say, with a bit more cheese to thicken it up a bit, would make a nice dip for crudites or crostini.

Panzanella (adapted from Nick Stellino's bread salad recipe)

3 cups day-old French or Italian bread, cut into 1" cubes
olive oil
2 ripe tomatoes, cut into 1/2" cubes
1/4 red or white onion, thinly sliced and marinated for one hour in 1 cup chilled water and 2 tablespoons white wine or rice wine vinegar, drained
3 cups salad greens
1 tablespoon drained capers
4 tablespoons crumbled feta cheese
Tomato dressing (recipe follows)

Preheat oven to 200F. Toss bread cubes with olive oil and spread in one layer on a foil-lined baking sheet. Bake for 45 minutes to one hour, tossing occasionally, until bread is mostly dry. Allow to cool to room temperature.

When ready to eat, toss croutons with a few tablespoons of dressing. Place tomatoes, onions, salad greens, capers, feta, and croutons in a large bowl and drizzle on remaining dressing. Toss well to coat. Serves 2 as a main dish and 4 as a side.

Tomato Dressing

1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
1 tablespoon crumbled feta cheese
1 tablespoon green onion, chopped
2 tablespoons fresh basil, chopped
1 teaspoon agave nectar
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
½ teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Combine all ingredients in a mini prep or blender and puree. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Monday, August 13, 2018

Mad Chef Kitchen & Bar

Last year's Mason Dixon Master Chef Tournament winner Fabio Mura is a busy man these days. Not only does he run the kitchen at Grille 620 and River Hill Grill, he's also in charge of food at the new Mad Chef Kitchen & Bar. Located in the same Turf Valley Town Square shopping center as Grille 620, Mad Chef Kitchen & Bar has the same casually elegant vibe as its two sister restaurants. But while the menu at Grille 620 has more of a steakhouse vibe and River Hill Grill has the elevated bar food thing perfected, the food at Mad Chef Kitchen has a bit more of an international flair. Evidence of Chef Mura's Sardinian roots peek in here and there, too.

Full disclosure: we've worked with Chef Mura in the past. He was featured in our book, Baltimore Chef's Table. That doesn't prevent us from speaking about his food honestly.

Between consulting with our waitress and the Chef, we decided on two small plates, one shared entree, and two desserts.

Mura drew inspiration for his Sardinian fonduta (the Italian version of fondue) from several things: a recent trip to Italy; the Sardinian honey and cheese pastries known as seadas; even fajitas. These elements became melty broiled provolone cheese drizzled with honey, citrus zest, and almonds, served on a hot cast iron plate with crispy rustic bread on the side. The flavors of the dish played well against each other, with the orange zest being an especially welcome addition. The cheese was also hot and somewhat gooey, but unlike melted mozzarella which tends to stay soft and traditional fondue which has a more liquid quality, the provolone was a little more solid and needed to be cut with a knife before manipulating it onto bread. Still, a flavorful start to the meal. I couldn't help think that this combination of ingredients would be killer on a pizza crust.

We didn't order the empanadas because we didn't want to be greedy, but Chef Mura sent them out anyway. The pastry was light, crisp, and greaseless, with a flavorful ground beef and onion filling. The accompanying salsa had a nice kick to it, but the empanadas were moist enough not to need a sauce other than their drizzle of lime crema.

We're a sucker for lamb ribs and are happy to see them pop up on menus more and more frequently. These were billed as "Korean barbecue" but didn't strike me as being from any one particular area of Asia. The sauce was light and sweet, but not cloying. The ribs themselves were very meaty, extremely tender and easy-to-eat, with a nice lamb-y flavor.

The luxurious paella for two included shrimp, mussels, clams, calamari, lobster, and sizable chunks of scallop. I've made paella at home, but it was nowhere near as good as this stuff. The short-grain Bomba rice, redolent of saffron and seafood stock, was perfectly cooked, and the various sea creatures adorning it were tender. The scallops in particular were delightful, and I did my best to bogart all of them for myself.

Then there was dessert. Chef Mura himself said we must order the zeppole and his tiramisu, which had "a new twist." The twist turned out to be pretty innovative; rather than coffee-soaked ladyfingers topped with a mascarpone cream, the cream was layered between crepes. The dish had all of the flavors of the original, but with a completely different texture. Pretty clever, Chef!

While the tiramisu was delicious, the zeppole were fan-freaking-tastic. The sugar-dusted orbs of fried dough were impossibly fluffy and moist on the inside; pretty much perfect on their own. But a drizzle of the accompanying dark chocolate hazelnut orange sauce made them absolute heaven. A must-order.

Mr Minx and I very much enjoyed our meal at Mad Chef Kitchen & Bar. The restaurant was comfortable, the staff friendly, knowledgeable, and on-the-ball, and the food was very good.

A shout out to the young man who refilled our water glasses. His reply of "my pleasure" to our "thank you" was a refreshing change from the current usual reply of "no problem." It shouldn't be a problem to serve a paying guest, and indicating that possibility could exist tends to make guests over a certain age uncomfortable.

Mad Chef Kitchen & Bar
Turf Valley Towne Center
11085 Resort Road, #404
Ellicott City, MD 21042
(410) 203-0327
https://www.madchefkitchen.com/

* Any products in this post that are mentioned by name may have been provided to Minxeats by the manufacturer. However, all opinions belong to Minxeats. Amazon links earn me $! Please buy!

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Friday, August 10, 2018

Flashback Friday - Pesto Mac

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on July 20, 2012.
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I had leftover roast chicken. I had pesto. I wanted to make something interesting, inspirational. Fabulous at the very least. Something worth blogging about. But my brain just wasn't cooperating. I almost made a risotto, only I didn't have any short-grain rice. I did have a box of cavatappi, that fun spiral pasta that's like a conga line of elbow macaroni, and realized there was plenty of cheese in the fridge, so my lazy brain went there.

Mac and cheese. But with pesto and chicken. Not exactly a life-changing dinner, but it was very good, and rather easy. I used Alton Brown's Stove Top Mac recipe as a guideline, switched up some quantities, and added sauteed onions for more flavor. You could skip the onions to make an even quicker version.

Macaroni with Pesto and Chicken (adapted from Alton Brown's Stove Top Mac-n-Cheese)

1 cup onion, chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 pound cavatappi
4 tablespoons butter
2 eggs
2 5-oz cans evaporated milk
6 ounces milk
1/2 teaspoon hot sauce
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Fresh black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
16 ounces shredded cheese (we like a combination of sharp cheddar, Swiss, and pepper Jack)
3/4 cup pesto (home-made or store-bought)
1 1/2 cups chopped cooked chicken
Handful of fresh basil leaves, roughly torn

Cook onion in olive oil over medium heat until very soft and starting to brown around the edges, about 8 minutes. Set aside.

Cook the pasta to al dente, according to package directions. Drain water, return pasta to pot, and add butter.

Whisk together the eggs, milks, hot sauce, salt, pepper, and mustard. Stir into the pasta and add the cheese, the onions, and the pesto. Cook over medium heat until cheese melts and pasta is well coated. Stir in chicken and fresh basil and taste for seasoning, adding additional salt and pepper if necessary.

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Monday, August 06, 2018

Ludlow Market Bar & Bottle Shop

I must admit never having visited the Wine Market Bistro, the precursor to Ludlow Market Bar & Bottle Shop in Locust Point. No particular reason, we just don't venture down to South Baltimore very often. Not long after the opening of the place, we were invited in to taste some of the small-plates style items that are ideal pairings for drinks at the bar or as a starter for a multi-course meal.

We had to try some drinks, too.

My taste in cocktails leans toward bold, unusual, and perfume-y, so I was happy with Ludlow's complex creations. The slushie Crush a Lot was far better than any of the typical insipid vodka-based "crush"-style drinks I've had. I normally avoid them entirely, but the promise of an icy drink comprising strong black tea and bourbon was hard to resist. It was strong and juice-forward, but also bourbon.

The Deluxe House was also quite nice. Mezcal drinks can sometimes be too smoky, but the agave liquor was tempered nicely by the addition of Spanish vermouth, dry curacao, and Baltimore Whiskey Company's fab 1904 Ginger Apple liqueur.

Room Service: Hamilton Rum, Demoiseau 110 Rhum, pineapple shrub, Jamaica #2 bitters
Chef Christopher Audia's creative menu borrows from various world cuisines. The Beef fat fries are a riff on British chef Heston Blumenthal's famous triple-cooked chips. They're super crisp on the outside and very tender on the inside, like no fries you've ever tasted, and they come with a trio of dips including mustard greens mustard, curry ketchup, and a malt vinegar aioli.

Beef fat fries, mustard green aioli, malt vinegar aioli, curry ketchup
Greens are a recurring theme on Audia's menu. The black eyed pea fritters are served on a nest of positively addictive marinated collard greens and topped with a dab of smoked mayo. The fritters themselves remind me of falafel and the whole plate would be pretty great stuffed into a pita.

Black eyed pea fritters, marinated collards, smoked aioli
The shrimp toast topped with radish salad and chili oil is a nod to everyone's favorite puu puu platter staple, only with much more flavor and no grease. I only got a piece of this (though I bogarted the fritters) and wished I could have savored more.

Shrimp toast, radish salad, chili oil
We also sampled a rockfish crudo with bright and refreshing cucumber and jalapeno flavors...
Rockfish crudo, cucumber, jalapeno, agua verde
...and the hangar steak with grilled broccoli, bacon lardons, and a mimolette cheese sauce. It's shown portioned for sampling but comes as a main dish.

Hangar steak,  grilled broccoli florets, mimolette fondue, lardons
What I really wanted to try, after seeing photos on Instagram, were the lamb ribs. They were fall-off-the-bone tender and came with a chunky hazelnut harissa, not too spicy but full of flavor, and the spark of pickled red onion. Another dish I had to share but really didn't want to.
Lamb ribs, hazelnut harissa, herb salad
Ludlow Market is strong on both the food and the drink sides of things, which I hope will make it a very popular dining destination. Mr Minx and I might even venture down into Locust Point more often.

Ludlow Market, Bar & Bottle Shop
921 E Fort Ave #135
Baltimore, MD 21230
https://www.ludlowmarketbaltimore.com

* Any products in this post that are mentioned by name may have been provided to Minxeats by the manufacturer. However, all opinions belong to Minxeats. Amazon links earn me $! Please buy!

Posted on Minxeats.com.

Friday, August 03, 2018

Flashback Friday - Summery Couscous Salad

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This post originally appeared on Minxeats.com on July 27, 2012.
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This summer, we planted four kinds of mini tomatoes and one larger yellow tomato, and a plethora of herbs (Greek oregano, Thai, purple, and sweet basil, lemon balm, tarragon, and thyme to go with the perennial chives and mint). Despite the heat and relative lack of rain, everything's been growing like crazy and I find myself harvesting a pint of tomatoes a couple times a week.

I'm not complaining!

One can only eat so many Caprese salads, so the basil and tomatoes need to be put to other uses. I found some tri-color pearl couscous at Shop Rite recently and thought it would make a nice variation on a pasta salad. It was also a good way to use up some of the garden's bounty.

Couscous Salad

1.5 tablespoons grainy mustard
1 tablespoon honey
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
extra virgin olive oil
1 cup pearl or Israeli couscous, cooked according to package directions
salt & pepper to taste
3 tablespoons chopped fresh herbs (dill, basil, parsley, mint) plus more for garnish
1/2 pint tiny tomatoes, sliced
1/2 cup diced cucumber
3 tablespoons roughly chopped pistachios
1 tablespoon finely chopped green onion

In a medium bowl, stir together the mustard, honey, lime juice, and 1 tablespoon of olive oil. Add the couscous and mix well. Season with salt and pepper, and add more olive oil if the consistency seems dry. Stir in fresh herbs, sliced tomatoes, cucumber, pistachio and green onion. Chill before serving. Add more salt and pepper if needed.

Posted on Minxeats.com.