Tag Archives: walnuts

Warm Mushroom and Arugula Salad

The umami and warmth of the mushrooms plays nicely with the richness of the cheddar and the peppery bite of the arugula.

This dish was inspired by a meal Jake had at the restaurant Fore Street in Portland, ME. Their version used black trumpet mushrooms and clothbound cheddar, which we didn’t have access to, but we think we’ve done it justice. For a meatless salad that eats like a meal look no further.

Equipment Needed: Frying Pan, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Wooden Spoon, Paper Towels, Sieve or Salad Spinner, Small Mixing Bowl, Fork

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4-6

Suggested Wine Pairing:  Cabernet Sauvignon, Rioja, Malbec 

Suggested Beer Pairing: Porter, Stout, Bitter Ale

Ingredients:

  • 5 oz arugula ($3.49/5 oz package)
  • 2 lbs. baby bella or crimini mushrooms ($2.99/lb)
  • 1 large shallot ($2.99/lb)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 6 oz porter cheddar (or any good aged cheddar) (about $8.99/lb)
  • 1 C walnuts (about $8.99/lb)
  • 2 TBSP unsalted butter ($4.99/lb)
  • 2 TBSP & 1/4 C extra virgin olive oil, divided ($8.99/32 oz)
  • 2 TBSP whole grain mustard ($4.99/8oz jar)
  • 1 TBSP honey ($4.39/12 oz)
  • 4 TBSP balsamic vinegar, divided ($8.99/32 oz)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Dressing Preparation:

  • In your small mixing bowl combine the mustard, 1/4 C of olive oil, 2 TBSP balsamic vinegar and your honey. Add a pinch of salt and pepper and whisk everything vigorously with a fork. Give it a taste to adjust the flavors to your liking and set it aside.

Salad Preparation:

  • Peel your shallots and garlic. Cut the shallots into quarters, lengthwise, and then go on to slice each piece thinly. Crush and mince the garlic and combine the two in a small bowl.

Slice your shallots thinly so they cook down more easily.

  • Using a damp paper towel, wipe off your mushrooms and slice them thinly. Place the frying pan over medium heat and add the olive oil. When it’s shimmering add the mushrooms with a palmful of salt and pepper. Let them cook down for about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, and then add the garlic and shallots.
  • Pour in 2 TBSP of balsamic vinegar and let everything cook down for another 10 minutes and take off the burner.
  • Wash and dry your arugula and put it in your serving bowl. Take the cheddar and cut it first into quarter inch thick slices and then into quarter inch cubes. Set aside separately from the arugula.

Cut your cheddar into tiny little cubes known as brunoise, a classic knife technique.

  • Place a frying pan over medium head and add a tablespoon of butter. Make sure to swirl it around the pan to coat the bottom. Add your walnut pieces and let them sit for about 4 minutes (make sure to check at 3 minutes; if they smell like they’re burning, they probably are).
  • Stir the walnuts and sprinkle on some salt and pepper. Toast for another 4 minutes and remove from the heat.

Watch the walnuts carefully. Toasted = delicious. Burnt = not so much.

  • We suggest layering things as follows: Arugula, mushrooms, walnuts, and cheddar. Drizzle some dressing across the top of the whole lot and graze away.

Ale-brined Stuffed Pork Loin

Pork, nuts, fruit and stuffing; a meal in every bite.

The other white meat can sometimes fall victim to being boring, which is a fate we blame on people with no imagination. We turn this one up to 11 by soaking it with a badass brine and stuffing it full of home cooking favorites like, well, stuffing and cranberries. It’s almost a complete meal in and of itself but that shouldn’t stop you from pairing it with some mashed potatoes or roasted root vegetables to cap things off.

Equipment Needed: 5 QT Pot, 3 QT Pot w/ Lid, Large Container with Lid, Large Roasting Pan (OR) 13 x 9 Baking Pan, Cooking Twine, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Whisk, Tongs, Wooden Spoon, Paper Towels

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4-6

Suggested Wine Pairing: Chardonnay, Pinot Grigio, Pinot Noir, Shiraz

Suggested Beer Pairing: Stout, Brown Ale, Scotch Ale

Ingredients:

  • 2 lbs pork tenderloin ($7.99/lb)
  • 16 oz brown ale (price varies)(we actually used an old autumn ale, you can use English ale, winter ale or almost anything other than an overly hoppy IPA or barley wine)
  • 2 C apple cider ($3.49/gallon)
  • 1/3 C kosher salt ($2.29/48 oz box)
  • 1/3 C  pure grade A maple syrup (about $7/8 oz)
  • 8 large rosemary sprigs ($1.50/sprig or bunch)
  • 1 TBSP whole black peppercorns ($3.69/2.25 oz jar)
  • 1/2 C dried cranberries ($2.99/6 oz bag)
  • 1/2 C walnuts (about $8.99/lb)
  • 1 box of instant stuffing (about $2.50/6 oz box) (don’t judge us, just be sure you check the instructions on the box, the recipe typically requires a few tablespoons of butter and water)
  • 2 large apples ($2.99/lb)

Preparation:

  • You’ll want to plan ahead a bit on this one because you’ll want to brine the pork loin for at least 2 hours before you cook it. 6-10 hours is ideal.
  • For the brine combine your beer, cider, maple syrup & salt in the 5 QT pot. Whisk it all together, place it over high heat and bring it to a boil, stirring regularly until the syrup and salt are dissolved.

Beer here!

  • Once it’s boiling, transfer the brine to your large container add a tray of ice cubes to accelerate the cooling process and thin it out a bit. Pop it in the fridge until it’s chilled (this should take about 45 minutes to an hour).
  • While you’re waiting for things to cool, trim any excess fat off of your pork loin and give it a good rinse.
  • When your brine is cold, place the pork in it an add the rosemary & peppercorns. Cover the dish and pop it back in the fridge for at least 2 hours; the longer you leave it in the more tender it’ll get.

Make sure you have enough brine to fully cover your meat.

  • When you can’t holdout any longer preheat the oven to 375°F and take the pork out of the brine. Rinse it, pat it dry, and put it on a plate to bring it to room temperature (at least 15 minutes). Save the rosemary sprigs for later.
  • While you’re waiting for the pork to warm, cook up your stuffing. This typically involves bringing water and butter to a boil, stirring in the stuffing and letting it sit in a covered pot for 5-8 minutes. Chop up the walnuts and stir them in along with the dried cranberries.

Chop the walnuts into manageable chunks but be careful not to pulverize them.

  • When the pork is un-chilled, butterfly it (a.k.a. cut it almost in half lengthwise so you can open it like a sub roll).
  • Slice up your apples into thin pieces, lengthwise and use them to line each interior side of the loin. Spoon in your stuffing and lay the rosemary sprigs from the brine across the top.

Be careful not to over-stuff the meat, you need to be able to tie it up without too much excess.

  • Squeeze everything together and tie up the loin with butcher’s twine.

It's a good idea to pre-cut your twine so you don't have to do it with porky hands.

  • Pop the pork in the oven and cook it for about 45-60 minutes until it registers at about 165° F on your meat thermometer.
  • As with all meat let it rest for 5-10 minutes before you cut it. Remove the twine, slice into 1-2 inch discs and serve.

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Candied Bacon and Walnuts

If your mother could only see you drooling over brussels sprouts.

What better way to kick off the beginning of brussels sprout season than with some bacon and maple syrup? We’ve given you variations on this dish before, but this one rules them all.

Equipment Needed: Baking Pan with Rack, Aluminum Foil, 2 Baking Sheets, Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, 2 Small Mixing Bowls

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 6

Suggested Wine Pairing: Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Grigio

Suggested Beer Pairing: Dark Belgians, Brown Ale, Dunkelweizen,

Ingredients:

  • 1 lb brussels sprouts (about $3/lb)
  • 1/2 C walnut halves (about $9/lb)
  • 1/2  C grade A maple syrup, divided (about $7/8 oz)
  • 2-3 TBSP brown sugar ($1.39/lb)
  • 1 TBSP butter ($4.99/lb)
  • 6 strips bacon ($6/lb)
  • 2 shallots ($1.99/lb)
  • 2 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 1 TSP cayenne pepper ($3/2 oz jar)
  • 3 TBSP extra virgin olive oil ($9.99/34 oz bottle)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat the oven to 400°F. All three components to this dish can be put in at the same time, so hold off until you’ve got everything prepped.
  • Wash the brussels sprouts, peel off any brown leaves and put an “X” about 1/4 inch deep into the bottom of each sprout. Mince the garlic and cut the shallots in half. Place the three ingredients on one of your baking sheets, drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Pop them in the oven for about 20 minutes or until nicely browned.

Oil those bad boys up.

  • Put the bacon and the rest of the maple syrup in a mixing bowl and thoroughly coat each piece. While that’s marinating a bit, cover the baking rack in aluminum foil.

Yes, that is a bowl of bacon and maple syrup. Nom nom nom.

  • Put the bacon on the rack in a single layer and sprinkle brown sugar and some cayenne pepper over the top. Bake for 15 minutes or until crispy.

A light dusting of cayenne adds some nice heat to the sweet.

  • In your other bowl melt the butter in the microwave and mix it with 1/4 C of maple syrup. Cover your other baking sheet in foil, coat the walnuts in the mixture and salt them lightly. Put them in the oven and toast for about 10 minutes. Keep an eye on these because they’ll be gross and a mess to clean up if they burn.
  • Cut the bacon into 1/2 inch strips and toss it with the veggies and walnuts. Serve and devour.

Arugula Pesto Chicken

Makes other chicken green with envy.

This recipe was based totally around the fact that our community supported agriculture (CSA) order gave us more arugula than we could use. A variation on pesto came to mind and we’re happy to report that this will now be making it into our rotation of things-that-sound-hard-but-are-ridiculously-easy-and-tasty. Substitute basil and pine nuts for the arugula and walnuts if you want to take things back into classic territory, but where’s the fun in that?

Equipment Needed: Food Processor, 13 x 9 Baking Pan, Cutting Board, Chef’s Knife, Spoon, Cheese Grater, Meat Thermometer

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4

Suggested Wine Pairing: Sauvignon Blanc or Viognier

Suggested Beer Pairing: Crisp Lagers, Pilsners or Pale Ales (IPAs might be a bit heavy but give it a shot if you like)

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts ($5.99/lb)
  • 1 lb arugula (about $7/lb)
  • 1/4 C walnuts (about $8.99/bag)
  • 4 cloves garlic ($2.99/lb)
  • 1/4 C olive oil ($9.99/34 oz bottle)
  • 1/4 C Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese ($12.99/lb)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 375°F
  • Wash and drain your arugula and toss it in the food processor. Chop your walnuts and garlic into smaller pieces to help things blend easier and add them to the food processor too.

Help the food processor along by pre-chopping the walnuts a bit.

  • Grate in about 1/4 C of cheese and put the top on. Using the pulse button, grind things up until it looks like confetti. Add olive oil, while processing if possible, until the entire thing becomes a paste (think the consistency of peanut butter).

While rappers use dollar bills to make it rain, we prefer cheese.

Add oil until the whole mix becomes a savory slush.

  • Wash and trim the chicken breasts and spread pesto sauce all over each piece. Put them in the oven for 45 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F. Serve with pasta, over salad in a wrap or however you see fit.

Coat each piece evenly for maximum flavorization.

Double Stuffed Dates

This bowl was empty within 5 minutes of the picture being taken. We wish we were kidding.

Do you often find yourself thinking, man, I don’t eat enough prosciutto? Well call us enablers ’cause you’re about to get your fix. This time we’re wrapping dates stuffed with the can’t miss combo of blue cheese and walnuts. Yeah, we’re twitching with anticipation too. You’re welcome.

Equipment Needed: Paring Knife, Cutting Board, Baking Sheet, Basting Brush, Bowl, Oven

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: 6ish

Suggested Wine Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Suggested Beer Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Ingredients:

  • 1 4 oz package of prosciutto ($5.99)
  • about 20 dried dates (about $5/8 oz)
  • 6 oz blue cheese crumbles (about $7/lb)
  • 1/2 C walnuts (about $8.99/bag)
  • Grade A Dark Amber maple syrup ($8.99/16 oz bottle)

Preparation

  • Preheat your oven to 375° F before you start your other prep work.
  • Chop your walnuts into tiny little pieces (about the size of a pea) and mix together in a bowl with the blue cheese.

Chop the walnuts, they'll be too big otherwise.

  • Insert the tip of your paring knife into the hole of the date where it was pitted. Slice lengthwise on one side and repeat until you’re out of dates.

Just the tip, just to see how it feels.

  • Take your prosciutto and slice each piece lengthwise into three pieces.

Make your prosciutto go further by slicing each piece into three, lengthwise.

  • Stuff some of the cheese and nut mixture into each date; be careful not to over stuff, the date should still be able to close (kinda). Wrap a slice of prosciutto around each piece and place them on an oven sheet, evenly spaced.

Wrap 'em and rack 'em.

  • Throw those puppies in the oven for about 6 minutes. Take them out and brush each one with maple syrup and pop them back in to the heating-up machine for another two minutes. Let cool and devour.

Maple syrup. Surprise!

Pilgrim Pork Chops with Maple Roasted Squash

 
porkchops

The lighting is bad, but the dish is good.

Fall is in full swing and so is the Brothers’ kitchen as we keep thinking of ways to reinvent some of our favorite comfort foods. Gussy up this stalwart of porcine cuts with some hints of Thanksgiving and a little alliteration. Maple roasted squash brings everything together with a sweet reminder that takeout is severely overrated.

Equipment Needed: 2-13 x 9 Baking Pans (or a Baking Pan and something to roast squash in; think baking sheet or roasting pan), Chef’s Knife, Cutting Board, Vegetable Peeler, Basting Brush, Plate, Cup or Bowl, Wax Paper, Rolling Pin (or heavy can), Meat Thermometer

Serving Suggestion: Individual Plating

Servings: 4

Suggested Wine or Beer Pairing: Pinot Noir, Old Vine Zinfandel, Oaky Chardonnay, Heavier Ales (think Bitters, Reds, Browns or dark Belgians)

Ingredients:

  • 4 boneless center cut pork chops (about $5/lb)
  • 1/2 C walnuts (about $8.99/bag)
  • 1/3 C dried cranberries (about $6.99/16 oz)
  • Honey, about 1/4 C ($3.99/12 oz)
  • 1 large butternut squash ($)
  • 3 TBSP Grade A Dark Amber maple syrup ($8.99/16 oz bottle)
  • 2 TBSP butter ($2.99/lb)
  • Extra virgin olive oil ($9.99/34 oz bottle)
  • Salt
  • Pepper

Preparation:

  • Preheat your oven to 35o° F before you start anything else. Trim and rinse the pork chops.
  • Place the walnuts on a piece of wax paper and fold it over so they’re covered. Take your rolling pin or heavy rolling device and crush those nuts into tiny pieces so it becomes just slightly chunkier than breadcrumbs.
crushing

Walnut crushing, taking out your aggression from work since 1620.

  • On an extra plate, mix together the walnuts and cranberries. Drizzle honey over each side of each pork chop and press the chop onto the mixture (again, both sides) to coat evenly. We suggest honeying one side at a time so things don’t get too messy. Toss those little piggies into your baking pan and let them do their thing in the oven for about an hour, or until the internal temperature is around 160° F. You can eat pork a little on the rarer side these days thanks to modern medicine, but you still don’t want it bloody.
coating

Coat your chops.

  • Once the pig is in the oven, peel your squash and cut it in half, lengthwise. Use a spoon to scoop out the guts and cut the remainders into 1-1 1/2 inch chunks.
scooping

Give your squash a seedectomy.

  • Throw the squash into your other baking device and evenly coat the pieces in olive oil. Add a reasonable amount of salt and pepper and toss them in the oven too. Ideally you’ll do this about 10-20 minutes after the pork’s gone in; the squash will take around 45 minutes.
  • While everything’s cooking, put your butter and maple syrup in your receptacle of choice and heat them in the microwave until they can be mixed with a fork. Make it easy on yourself and avoid boiling butter and splattering by heating it in 30 second intervals until ready. Once your squash has been roasting for about 30 minutes, take it out and brush the buttery maple goodness on every piece, then return them to finish cooking. Serve with mittens to get in the full fall mood. 
brushing

Better brush strokes than anything hanging in The Met.

Firey Maple Walnuts

People just can't get enough of our nuts.

People just can’t get enough of our nuts.

Got a craving for a sweet and savory treat with a little hey-how’s-your-uncle kick to get your tastebuds moving? Try our nuts. This lumberjack-approved snack comes from Jake’s undying love for pure maple syrup and his daily quest to find new things to pour it on. Perfect for cocktail parties, impromptu gatherings or having on hand for a quick nosh.

Equipment Needed: Mixing Bowl, Large Fork, Baking Sheet, Oven

Serving Suggestion: Family Style

Servings: Depends on how hungry you are and what else there is to eat

Suggested Wine Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Suggested Beer Pairing: Whatever you’re drinking

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups of walnut halves and pieces ($8.99/bag)
  • 1/4 stick of butter ($4.99/lb package)
  • 1/4 C Grade A Dark Amber maple syrup ($8.99/16 oz bottle)
  • 2-3 TBSP cayenne pepper ($3/bottle)
  • Salt

Preparation

  • Preheat the oven to 400° F. Melt the butter for about 30-45 seconds in the microwave or two minutes over medium/low heat on the stove. Pour it over the nuts, then pour in the syrup and mix until evenly coated.
Pour in syrup like it's going out of style and mix well.

Pour in syrup like it’s going out of style and mix well.

  • Spread the walnuts out on a baking sheet and sprinkle the cayenne pepper over the top. Be sure to be consistent or risk serving someone a painfully firey nut (bad news all around, trust us).
Spread the walnuts evenly for uniform roasting.

Spread the walnuts evenly for uniform roasting.

  • Throw those bad boys in the oven for about 6-8 minutes (you’ll know if you overdo them, things will start smoking). Take them out and salt to taste. Let them cool for at least 15 minutes before serving.