Freekeh Burgers With Chipotle Mustard
Note: If you have become fond of freekeh — cracked green wheat — you'll be looking for good things to make with it. Add these burgers to the list. Serve on grilled bread, with onion and lettuce. The just-cooked freekeh needs to be refrigerated until thoroughly cooled. Find freekah with the grains on the supermarket shelf. Chipotle peppers in adobo are available in cans on the grocery shelf. Adapted from "The Freekeh Cookbook: Healthy, Delicious, Easy-to-Prepare Meals With America's Hottest Grain," by Bonnie Matthews.
• 2 1/4 c. water
• 1 c. dried freekeh (may substitute 2 cups cooked freekeh; omit the water above and the cooking step)
• 1 tbsp. chili powder
• 2 tbsp. onion powder
• 2 tsp. chipotle powder
• 1 tsp. smoked Spanish paprika (also called pimenton)
• 2 eggs, beaten
• 15 oz. cooked or canned no-salt-added black beans (if using canned, rinse and drain them)
• 1/2 onion, finely diced
• 6 garlic cloves, finely chopped
• 2 tbsp. grapeseed oil or vegetable oil, plus more for the pan
• 1 tsp. apple cider vinegar
• 1 c. honey mustard, divided
• 2 chipotle peppers in adobo, finely chopped (see Note), divided
• 1 c. whole-wheat flour, plus more for dusting
• Sea salt
Combine water and dried freekeh in a medium saucepan over high heat. Once the mixture comes to a boil, cook for 1 minute, stirring. Reduce the heat to low; cover and cook for 20 to 25 minutes, until tender. Transfer to a heatproof bowl and refrigerate until cool.
Combine the chili powder, onion powder, chipotle powder and smoked paprika in a mixing bowl, along with the eggs, cooked and cooled freekeh, black beans, onion, garlic, oil, vinegar, 2 tablespoons honey mustard, 1 tablespoon chipotle peppers in adobo, 1 cup flour and a good pinch of salt. Use your hands to blend well.
Dust a work surface and your hands with flour. Use the chilled mixture to form 8 balls (about 4 ½ ounces each); shape each one into a burger patty and coat it lightly with flour, patting to remove any excess.
Whisk together remaining honey mustard and remaining chipotle peppers in adobo in a small bowl until well combined.
Heat about 1/8 inch of the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Once the oil shimmers, add 2 or 3 patties and cook for 2 minutes, until browned and crisped on the bottom. Turn the patties over and cook the same way on the second side for about 2 minutes. Transfer to a plate; sprinkle lightly with salt. Repeat with the remaining patties.
Serve warm or at room temperature, with the chipotle honey mustard.
Nutrition information per serving (with half the chipotle mustard among all):
Calories 280 Fat 7 g Sodium 180 mg
Carbohydrates 45 g Saturated fat 1 g
Protein 12 g Cholesterol 45 mg Dietary fiber 9 g
Butterflied Leg of Lamb With Sekenjabin
Note: Sekenjabin is Persian mint syrup, often spelled sekanjabin. This version is not as sweet and thick as it is traditionally made in Iran. Here, it's paired with flavorful lamb and just makes sense. Serve with flatbread or pitas and a vegetable. The sekenjabin can be prepared and refrigerated a day in advance. The meat needs to rest in the rub for 15 to 20 minutes before roasting. Adapted from "A Change of Appetite: Where Healthy Meets Delicious," by Diana Henry.
• 1 1/4 c. water
• 3/4 c. sugar
• 2/3 c. white wine vinegar
• 1 c. packed fresh mint leaves
• 5 lb. boneless, butterflied leg of lamb
• 6 garlic cloves, chopped
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground black pepper
• 3 tbsp. olive oil, plus more for rubbing the meat
• Leaves from 2 heads romaine lettuce, rinsed and patted dry
Combine 1 ¼ cups water and sugar in a large saucepan over medium heat. Once the mixture starts bubbling, stir to make sure the sugar has dissolved. Add the vinegar and reduce the heat to medium-low; cook for 15 minutes, then remove the saucepan from the heat. The syrup will thicken a bit as it cools.
Reserve ½ cup of the mint leaves; add about a third of the remaining leaves to the syrup to infuse as it cools. Once the sekenjabin has thoroughly cooled, discard the leaves.
Preheat the oven to 435 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil. Use a small, sharp knife to pierce the lamb in several places.
Combine the garlic, what's left of the ½ cup mint and a good pinch each of salt and black pepper in a mortar and pestle; grind, adding the 3 tablespoons of oil, to form a coarse paste. (Or use a mini food processor.)
Rub the mixture into the meat all over and especially into the slits. Spread the lamb on the baking sheet, fattier side up. Roast for 15 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 375 degrees and roast for 15 minutes (for medium-rare). Remove the lamb from the oven; tent it loosely with foil and let it rest for 15 to 20 minutes.
Chop the reserved ½ cup mint and add it to the chilled sekenjabin. Arrange the lettuce leaves in a wide, shallow bowl. Cut the lamb into long, thin slices, reserving the meat juices; serve the sekenjabin alongside the leaves and the lamb. Strain the fat from the meat juices; pass the strained juices at the table.
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories 480 Fat 18 g Sodium 220 mg
Carbohydrates 16 g Saturated fat 5 g
Protein 60 g Cholesterol 180 mg Dietary fiber 3 g
Peach and Pine Nut Tarts With Triple-Cream Cheese
Serves 6 to 12 servings (makes six 5-inch tarts).
Note: The cheese is a wonderful accompaniment for these not-too-sweet tarts. You'll need six (5-inch) tart pans with removable bottoms, or individual small, disposable aluminum pie pans (available at the grocery store). The dough needs to be refrigerated for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day. Adapted from "The Cheesemonger's Seasons: Recipes for Enjoying Cheese With Ripe Fruits and Vegetables," by Chester Hastings.
For the crust
• 2 c. flour, plus more for the work surface
• 1/3 c. sugar
• 1/4 tsp. fine sea salt
• Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
• 12 tbsp. (1 1/2 sticks) chilled, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
• 1 egg plus 1 egg yolk, beaten
For the filling
• 8 tbsp. (1 stick) unsalted butter, at room temperature
• 1/2 c. sugar
• 2 eggs
• 1/2 c. flour
• 1/2 c. pine nuts, finely chopped
• 1 tsp. vanilla extract
• 3 or 4 medium, ripe peaches
• 6 oz. soft-ripened, triple-cream cheese (such as Explorateur), cut into 6 equal pieces
For the crust: Combine 2 cups flour, 1/3 cup sugar, salt and lemon zest in a food processor; pulse to blend. Add the 12 tablespoons of butter pieces and pulse just long enough to form a crumbly mix with pieces the size of small peas. Add the egg and egg yolk; pulse just until the dough comes together.
Lightly dust a work surface with flour. Turn the dough out onto it and roll into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
Arrange the tart pans on a baking sheet.
Unwrap the dough. Roll out on the floured work surface to a thickness of 1/8 inch. If the dough is too firm, let it sit for 5 minutes before rolling.) Cut into 6 equal pieces; press each piece into a tart pan, trimming off any excess; the dough can be rerolled once. Prick the bottoms with a fork all over, then refrigerate for 10 minutes.
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line the chilled tart shells with parchment paper and ceramic weights, dried beans or raw rice. Bake for 15 minutes or as needed until the tart shells are firm and dry but not browned. Cool while you make the filling.
For the filling: Combine 8 tablespoons butter and ½ cup sugar in the bowl of a stand mixer or handheld electric mixer. Beat on low then medium-high speed until light and fluffy. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
On medium speed, add 2 eggs one at a time until well incorporated. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl.
On low speed, add ½ cup flour, pine nuts and vanilla extract; beat until just combined.
Divide all the filling among individual tart shells (still in their pans), smoothing the tops.
Cut the peaches in half; discard the pits. Cut each half into thin slices, then arrange them as you wish, so they mostly cover the filling of each tart. Bake for 40 minutes, or until the center of the filling feels firm and springs back when gently pressed. Transfer the tarts (in the pans) to a wire rack to cool for 20 minutes, then remove the tarts from their pans.
Serve with a piece of the cheese alongside each tart (or tart half).
Nutrition information per each of 12 servings:
Calories 440 Fat 29 g Sodium 160 mg
Carbohydrates 37 g Saturated fat 15 g
Protein 9 g Cholesterol 125 mg Dietary fiber 1 g
Scallop and Blueberry ceviche
Note: Here, the scallops stay soft and creamy. Be sure to use the freshest ones you can find. Diced peaches or nectarines can stand in for the blueberries. You might find it easier to slice the scallops if they have spent a quick 10 minutes in the freezer beforehand. Serve with tortilla chips. Adapted from "Fruitful: Four Seasons of Fresh Fruit Recipes," by Brian Nicholson and Sarah Huck.
• 1 lb. sea scallops, patted dry, then cut into 1/4-in. slices (see Note
• 1/2 c. finely chopped red onion
• 1 to 2 serrano chile peppers, stemmed, seeded and finely chopped
• 3 strips lime peel (no pith)
• Kosher salt
• Freshly ground black pepper
• 2/3 c. fresh lime juice
• 1 c. fresh blueberries
• 1/4 c. chopped cilantro, optional
Combine the scallops, onion, chiles to taste, lime peel, a small pinch of salt and a few grinds of black pepper in a large, nonreactive (such as ceramic or glass) bowl. Pour in the lime juice and toss to coat. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate, tossing occasionally, for at least 2 hours or up to overnight (16 hours at most).
Just before serving, add the blueberries and the cilantro, if using, and toss to combine. Taste, and add salt and pepper as needed.
Use a slotted spoon to transfer the ceviche to individual cocktail (martini) glasses or small plates; serve right away.
Nutrition information per serving:
Calories 90 Fat 1 g Sodium 160 mg
Carbohydrates 8 g Saturated fat 0 g
Protein 13 g Cholesterol 25 mg Dietary fiber 0 g