No. 17: Basic Vinaigrette Dressing

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1/2 C extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 Tbsp. or more good wine vinegar
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 tsp spice (see below)

FOR THE SPICE, TRY:

  • Original Garlic Dust or Roasted Garlic Dust
  • Garlic Pepper (omit the salt in the recipe)
  • Shallot Flakes
  • 1/2 tsp Yellow Onion Dust. 1/2 tsp Garlic Dust
  • Italiano Mix
  • Everything Bagel Blend (omit the salt in the recipe)
  • Garlic Flakes
  • Tomato Flakes
  • Truffle salt, in place of table salt.

DIRECTIONS:

  • Combine all the ingredients in a blender and turn the machine on; a creamy emulsion will form within 30 seconds. Taste and add vinegar a teaspoon at a time, and spice a pinch a time, until the balance tastes right to you.

No. 31: Baked Asparagus

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 bunch of asparagus
  • 1-2 Tbsp Olive oil
  • Spice (see below)

For seasoning, choose one:

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 400F
  • Snap off the woody bottoms of the asparagus. (Hold the asparagus stalks, one at a time, near the cut end, and snap it like kindling. Fortunately the asparagus breaks in just the right spot!)
  • Place asparagus in a single layer on a cookie sheet, and drizzle the olive oil over it. Roll it around to make sure all the stalks are evenly coated, then sprinkle with the spice. Bake until tender or crunchy depending upon your preference, about 12 to 20 minutes.

No. 14: Baked Broccoli

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INGREDIENTS:

  • Fresh broccoli, just enough to serve (this recipe isn't great leftover)
  • Olive oil
  • Spice (see below)
  • Optional: freshly grated Parmesan

THIS RECIPE WORKS BEST WITH:

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 400F. 
  • Chop the broccoli into bite-sized pieces, discarding the tough skin on the stalk. Put it in a big mixing bowl.
  • Drizzle the broccoli with olive oil, tossing it around the bowl to coat. You don't want your broccoli swimming in oil - you just want to lightly coat it. Then, sprinkle with your favorite spice until it's well-seasoned. Make sure each floret gets some spice - that's what makes this recipe so delicious.
  • Empty the contents of the mixing bowl onto a baking sheet, spreading the broccoli out into a single layer. 
  • Bake for 10-15 minutes, checking at around 10 minutes to be sure it doesn't burn. If you like it crunchy, take it out just as the florets begin to brown. If you like your broccoli more well done, leave in for another few minutes. You can taste as you go (let it cool for a minute, if you do!)
  • Remove from the oven and toss with freshly grated Parmesan, if you choose.

 

No. 3: Easy Mussels & Butter

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TIPS:

- Especially in a dish like this where the butter is a key ingredient, I love to use Kerry Gold Irish butter. It has a ton of buttery flavor.

-  If a mussel doesn't open even after you allow it a few extra minutes over the heat, don't eat it.

INGREDIENTS:

  • Fresh mussels in the shell (a good rule of thumb is 1 lb per person for an entree)
  • 1 stick (4 oz) Salted butter
  • 2 cups dry white wine
  • 3 tsp Garlic Flakes
  • 3 tsp Shallot Flakes
  • Fresh bread (optional)
  • Lemon (optional)

DIRECTIONS:

  • Rinse and scrub mussels under cold water
  • Using your fingers or paring knife, remove beards (strings that hang from the mussel shells), and discard.
  • In a large stockpot set over medium heat, combine wine, butter, and spices.
  • Simmer 2 minutes.
  • Add mussels and cover, increase heat to high. 
  • Cook until all mussels are open, about 5 minutes. 
  • Remove from heat, divide mussels and broth in bowls to serve. Serve immediately, with lemon wedges and grilled bread.

SUBSTITUTION: Garlic Flakes for: Garlic Pepper (use unsalted butter), Original Garlic Dust, or Roasted Garlic DustItaliano Mix

SUBSTITUTION: Shallot Flakes for: Green Onion Dust, Yellow Onion Dust

 

No. 8: Crispy Potato Sticks

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INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 lb. Potatoes (any kind will work, but my favorite are thin-skinned red, purple, or Yukon Gold because I can leave the skin on)
  • 2 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 Tbsp. Spice*  (or to taste)
  • Salt, to taste

*This recipe works best with the following Rockerbox blends:

DIRECTIONS:

  • Preheat oven to 450°F.

  • Slice potatoes into steak-fry shapes, and toss in a mixing bowl with olive oil, spice, and a sprinkle of salt (if there is no salt in the blend you're using).

  • Spread on a baking sheet, allowing space between each piece. Bake on top rack for 30-50 minutes, or until potatoes are very crispy. Serve alongside your favorite BBQ sauce, ketchup, aioli, etc.