51 Main Street
Chester, Connecticut 06412

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Popovers, Chicken and Shrimp Salads and Chilled Kale Soup on Better Connecticut (April 2, 2018)

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Basic Popovers

2 eggs

1 c. milk

1 c. all-purpose flour

1 T. unsalted butter, melted

½ t. salt

(Optional: 2 tsp. chopped fresh herbs)

 

  1. Heat oven to 450 degrees. Generously grease popover pan.

  2. In a medium bowl, beat eggs lightly. Blend in remaining ingredients just until smooth. Fill cups about half full.

  3. Bake 20 minutes at 450 degrees, then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake 20 minutes longer, or until golden brown.

  4. Serve immediately, or reheat briefly in the pan before serving.

 

Shrimp and Basil Salad

1 lb. cooked shrimp, cut into small bite-size pieces

½ c. mayonnaise (or to taste)

Grated zest of one lemon

2 T. lemon juice

1 T. fresh basil, julienned

1 stalk celery, cut into small dice

2 scallions, sliced thinly

Salt and pepper to taste

 

  1. Whisk together mayonnaise, zest and lemon juice in a large bowl. Add remaining ingredients, stirring gently to combine.

  2. Adjust seasoning as needed.

 

Provençal Chicken Salad

1 large or 2 small chicken breasts

½ c. mayonnaise (or to taste)

2 T. red-wine vinegar

1 t. dried Herbes de Provence or dried Tarragon

2 c. red seedless grapes, sliced lengthwise

1 stalk celery, cut into small dice

¼ c. red onion, cut into small dice

½ c. almonds or walnuts, toasted and chopped roughly

Salt and pepper to taste

 

  1. To cook chicken: Heat a large covered sauté pan with some olive oil over high heat. Salt and pepper chicken breast, then put into the hot pan. Cook on high for 1 minute, then turn the chicken over, put the lid on the pan, and reduce the heat to low. Cook on low for 20 minutes. Turn off the burner and let chicken sit for 15 minutes more. DO NOT REMOVE THE LID AT ANY TIME. You are basically steaming the chicken to help it stay juicy.

  2. Whisk together mayonnaise, vinegar and Herbes de Provence in a large bowl

  3. Dice chicken and add with all other ingredients, turning with a spatula to combine thoroughly.

  4. Adjust seasoning as needed.

 

Chilled Kale Soup

1 small potato, peeled and diced

1 clove garlic

1 10- 16-oz bag kale

About 4-6 oz. crème fraîche, sour cream, yogurt

Milk (dairy or dairy-free), ½ and ½, light cream or heavy cream

Salt

Ground white pepper (can substitute ground black pepper)

Cayenne pepper (optional)

 

  1. In a saucepan, cover potatoes and garlic clove with about 1 inch of water, bring to a boil, and then reduce to a simmer and cook until potato is tender, about 10-20 minutes. Set aside.

  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Fill a large bowl with iced water. Wash kale, and then blanche in the boiling water until it turns bright green and the thick stems are softened. Immediately drain and then submerge in the iced water to chill it. This locks in the bright green color. Strain again and dry, either using a salad spinner or by pressing between two clean towels.

  3. Put potato, garlic, kale and crème fraîche into a blender and process until it is roughly chopped. Add enough dairy to loosen it, continuing to blend on high until it is completely smooth and the thickness you desire. Season with salt and peppers to taste. Chill.

  4. Note: If you do not have a high-speed blender, you may want to strain through a Chinois or drum sieve to ensure a smooth texture.