This coming week at the Hollywood Bowl, the Fourth of July is celebrated in grand style with the annual fireworks spectacular. And while we honor one revolution, we give a nod to Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution, a valiant effort to encourage healthy eating coast-to-coast. This weekend, the young British chef has earned full American honors.
“Yes, my hat is cocked back. Yes, my jeans sag just a bit. Yes, my sneakers are always scuffed up. Hip hop runs through my veins but I grew up around classical music. As much as soy sauce, cigarettes and street lamps fill my life, so too did violins, cellos and trombones. I am like a two-year old kid trying to speak when it comes to melody, but music is a huge part of food and life for this homegrown L.A. kid. Big ups to you and the Hollywood Bowl. Enjoy the grub!”
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PRESENTS THIS WEEK’S RECIPES:
GARDEN SALAD WITH BUTTERMILK DRESSING
OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES
GARDEN SALAD WITH BUTTERMILK DRESSING
For the Dressing:
- 1½ teaspoons dry mustard
- 3 tablespoons seasoned rice wine vinegar or cider vinegar
- 5 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 9 tablespoons buttermilk
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped shallot
- 1 tablespoon chopped fresh dill or 1½ teaspoons dried dill
- Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
For the Salad:
- 1 head Boston or small heart of romaine lettuce
- 1 large or 2 small carrots
- ½ cucumber
- 6 or so radishes
- A handful (about 1 cup) cherry or grape tomatoes
- Put all the dressing ingredients in a small jar with a tight-fitting lid. Shake really well. The dressing makes twice as much as you will need for this salad. The rest can be refrigerated for up to a week.
- For the salad, pull off any wilted or bruised outer leaves. Separate the leaves, tear out any thick stems, and tear the leaves into bite-size pieces. Wash the leaves and spin them dry in a salad spinner.
- Peel and grate the carrot, cut the cucumber in half lengthwise, then into half-moon slices. Slice the radishes thin and cut the cherry tomatoes in half (or leave them whole if you like). Add all the vegetables to the lettuce. Give the dressing a good shake, pour half of it over the salad and toss.
You can start just about any meal with a garden salad or serve it alongside almost anything. Add grilled or boiled shrimp, sliced grilled chicken breast or flank steak to turn a garden salad into a main course.
I never understand why anyone would want to buy store-bought salad dressings when they’re so easy to make, taste far nicer and aren’t pumped full of preservatives if you make them yourself! I like to make mine in a jam jar so that I can store any leftovers easily in the fridge—it will sit quite happily for up to a week or so. I often make up double batches to save myself time after a busy day at work.
Washing and spinning lettuce dry means no more soggy salads—it will also make the dressing cling to the leaves, rather than ending up at the bottom of the bowl.
In my opinion, the most important part of the salad is the dressing. Don’t drown your salad in dressing—a little goes a long way. Always dress just before serving and use your fingers to make sure all your leaves get a good coating of dressing.
Once you have learned to make this salad try adding a few of your favorite other ingredients, like a few toasted nuts, some peppery arugula, or some crumbled feta.
A salad a day keeps the doctor away, and this one won’t clog your arteries like many you find in restaurants. The buttermilk adds flavor and creaminess without adding much fat.
Most buttermilk you find in a supermarket nowadays is reduced fat (approximately 1½%) but check the label to be sure.
This is a hefty-size salad—but you can never eat too many greens!
Have you ever read the ingredients on bottled dressing? I bet you can’t pronounce half of them. By making double the amount of dressing, as the recipe suggests, you can keep the rest it in the fridge and it can become your house dressing (and one without a whole bunch of mystery ingredients). Once you’ve made it, you’ll forget it took any time at all to prepare.
- 1 orange
- 1 dried chile
- 1½ heaped teaspoons smoked paprika
- 1½ teaspoons Dijon or English mustard
- 3 tablespoons honey
- 3 tablespoons ketchup
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- 1/16 teaspoon sea salt
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- Four (4) 5-ounce boneless skinless chicken breasts
- If barbecuing, light the grill now so the flames have died down and it’s ready when
you’re ready to cook.
- Finely grate the orange zest into a shallow bowl. Crumble in the dried chile. Add the paprika, mustard, honey, ketchup and a splash of olive oil. Season with a small pinch each of the salt and pepper and mix well. Spoon out a few tablespoons of the marinade and set it aside.
- Add the chicken breasts to the bowl with the remaining marinade. Turn them over in the marinade so they’re well coated, cover with plastic wrap, and leave to sit for 5 to 10 minutes or until the grill is ready.
- If using a grill pan, put it over high heat now to get it screaming hot. Use tongs to transfer your chicken breasts onto the grill or grill pan. For chicken breasts about 1 inch thick, cook for about 5 minutes on each side, turning every minute and basting as you go, or until golden and cooked through. Spoon a little of the reserved sauce over each breast.
Everyone loves barbecued chicken. It’s a feature of pretty much every barbecue all over the country. With this recipe, you can make it crisp on the outside and cooked in the middle, just the way it should be.
The marinade can be used on other lean proteins such as shrimp, pork tenderloin or flank steak. If the outside of the meat or fish looks dry, brush a little of the marinade over it whilst cooking.
When zesting citrus fruit, use a Microplane or similar zester so you only remove the colored zest without digging into the bitter white pith underneath.
When grilling you need to control the heat really carefully so the food cooks through properly before it starts burning on the outside. If your meat starts to char soon after putting it on the grill or in the pan, move it to a cooler part of the grill or turn the heat right down.
If you’re doing this on the stovetop, it will work best in a well-seasoned cast-iron or non-stick grill pan.
It’s good to have one side of the barbecue with fewer coals so it’s cooler. The coals are ready when the flames have died down.
Citrus zest, including orange, lemon, and lime, gives a dish loads of flavor without adding many calories. Chile also does the same job. Make your marinades ahead of time and store it in a jar so you don’t get tempted to use bottled sauces.
Skinless chicken breasts are a lean protein—cook up some extras to use in sandwiches and salads for lunch.
FOOD SAFETY TIPS
Store raw meat and fish on the bottom shelf of your fridge, and food that’s ready to be eaten—whether it’s salad, cheese, dairy or cooked food—on the shelves above. This is so the juices from the raw foods can’t drip onto cooked foods and cross-contaminate them.
Use tongs to move the meat into the marinade and again into the pan. If you flip the meat with a spatula, be sure to wash it before you use it again to take the filets out of the pan to avoid cross-contamination.
OATMEAL RAISIN COOKIES
Make 32 Cookies
- ½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature, plus extra for greasing the pan
- ¾ cup dark brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- ¾ cup whole wheat flour
- ½ teaspoon baking soda
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon cinnamon
- 1½ cups “old-fashioned” oats
- ½ cup raisins
- Preheat the oven to 350°F. Lightly grease one or two baking sheets.
- Cream the butter and the sugar together in a mixing bowl (by hand with a wooden spoon or using a handheld electric mixer) until fluffy. Beat in the egg. Stir in the vanilla extract, flour, baking soda, baking powder, and salt together in a separate mixing bowl. Beat them into the butter mixture. Stir in the oats and raisins.
- Drop the batter by slightly mounded tablespoons onto the prepared baking sheet(s). Bake until lightly browned on the bottom, 10 to 12 minutes.
Add ½ cup unsweetened shredded coconut or 1 cup chocolate chips to the batter along with the oats and raisins.
These cookies are delicious with a glass of ice cold milk!
This is a really easy, fun and delicious recipe—anyone can make cookies! They’re a great thing to share with your friends and will taste much better than shop-bought cookie dough.
This is really easy to make fresh, but if you’re really busy you can freeze the dough. Just defrost thoroughly before use—it’s a great thing to have up your sleeve when you have unexpected guests.
Be creative and add your favorite mix-ins to the cookies—any kind of dried fruit or nuts or chocolate combination works a treat.
For round, flat cookies, just press the cookies with the palm of your hand after dropping them into the baking sheet.
Cookies can be enjoyed if you watch the amount and type of cookies you eat.
These cookies are made with whole oats and whole wheat flour so they have some better qualities than mass-produced cookies you can buy—those tend to be high in fat and sugar, and who knows what else goes into them!
FOOD SAFETY TIPS
Eating raw cookie dough is not safe because it has raw egg in it. Raw eggs may contain salmonella which can cause health problems, especially for people with compromised immune systems.