Barley-Stuffed Peppers

Barley Stuffed Pepper 03.30.2016

Hey AeroGardens, try out this delicious Barley-Stuffed Peppers recipe, courtesy of Epicurious.com. You can use fresh parsley and bell peppers straight out of your AeroGarden!

This is an almost perfect dish for the home cook because it’s economical, healthy, and scrumptious! You can whip it up anytime you have leftover cooked barley, brown rice, or quinoa from the night before. You could even reinvigorate a container of rice from last night’s Chinese or Indian takeout! For a carnivore’s take on this dish, add a cup of browned ground meat in place of 1 cup of the cooked barley or other grain. 
INGREDIENTS:

3/4 cup uncooked barley, or 2 cups cooked barley or other grain
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
Kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper
freshly cracked black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 cup small-diced fresh mozzarella
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1 yellow bell pepper, halved lengthwise and seeded
1 red bell pepper, halved lengthwise and seeded
1 cup bread crumbs

PREPARATION:

Slice the mushrooms, grate the parmesan, dice the mozzarella, chop the parsley, halve and seed the bell peppers.
Cook the barley according to the package instructions. Transfer the barley to a bowl and set aside.
Preheat the oven to 350°F and make sure the oven rack is positioned in the center.

In a large sauté pan, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot and rippling, add half the mushrooms and season with a pinch of salt and a crack of black pepper. Do not touch the pan!

After 3 to 4 minutes, use tongs to flip one mushroom. If it’s not browned to your liking, give them another minute or two. When they’re ready, flip all the mushrooms and cook for another 2 to 3 minutes.

Add the cooked mushrooms to the bowl with the barley and repeat with the remaining mushrooms.

Add the Parmesan and mozzarella cheeses and the parsley to the bowl and stir to combine.

Line the pepper halves cut side up on a baking sheet and season each with a pinch of kosher salt.

Use a large spoon to divide the barley filling evenly among the pepper halves.

Place the baking sheet in the oven and bake until the filling is hot in the center and the peppers are tender, about 20 minutes.
Sprinkle the peppers with the bread crumbs and bake for 5 to 10 minutes more, or until the bread crumbs are golden brown.

Cooks’ Notes:

It’s important to let the mushrooms sear in this recipe. This is an old-school chef’s secret—leaving mushrooms alone in an uncrowded pan over high heat ensures that they sear rather than steam, and you end up with the most delicious mushrooms ever as opposed to sad, bland, spongy, soggy, greasy mushrooms. Before adding any further seasoning to the mix, grab a spoon and taste! This is a very important step in cooking—tasting before seasoning—especially here, with two types of cheese involved, since cheese always lends saltiness to a dish. If you think it tastes great, then that’s perfect-stop there. You’re the chef and you’re in control, so trust your own palate when it comes to seasoning. For added cheesy extravagance, you can also top each baked pepper with more cheese and place them back in the oven for 2 minutes, or until the cheese is golden brown and oozy. The typical ratio for cooking barley is 1 part barley to 3 parts water or stock, but it’s different for quick-cooking barley, so read the package.

Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita

cherry-tomato-pizza-margherita 03.21.2016

Hey AeroGardeners! Use fresh basil and cherry tomatoes from your garden to make this tasty Cherry Tomato Pizza Margherita, for the whole family. Courtesy of Epicurious.com.

YIELD: Makes 4 main-course servingsACTIVE TIME30 minutes
TOTAL TIME: 55 minutes

INGREDIENTS:

1 13.8-ounce tube refrigerated pizza dough
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 12-ounce bag cherry tomatoes, stemmed
1 garlic clove, pressed
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, coarsely crushed in plastic bag
1/4 teaspoon dried crushed red pepper
1 4-ounce ball fresh mozzarella in water (ovoline), diced
4 ounces whole-milk mozzarella, diced
1/3 cup chopped fresh basil leaves plus small leaves for garnish

PREPARATION:

Position rack in top third of oven and preheat to 425°F. Unroll dough on heavy large baking sheet; pull to about 12×8-inch rectangle, pinching any tears to seal. Fold over edge of dough to make border.

Heat large skillet over high heat 2 minutes. Add oil, then tomatoes; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Sauté until tomatoes are charred and beginning to break down, about 5 minutes. Transfer to large bowl. Mix in garlic, fennel, and crushed red pepper. Using back of fork, crush tomatoes in bowl, leaving large chunks intact. Season mixture with salt and pepper. Toss cheeses and chopped basil in medium bowl.

Sprinkle cheese mixture evenly over dough, right up to border. Spoon on tomato mixture in dollops, leaving some cheese uncovered. Bake pizza until crust is crisp and brown, 25 to 30 minutes.

Loosen pizza with metal spatula and slide onto board. Garnish with basil leaves.

Per serving: 473.3 kcal calories, 35.9 % calories from fat, 18.9 g fat, 8.3 g saturated fat, 30.0 mg cholesterol, 53.1 g carbohydrates, 2.6 g dietary fiber, 8.4 g total sugars, 50.5 g net carbohydrates, 22.5 g protein

Guess What’s Growing Wednesdays!

thumbelina zinnia

Happy Wednesday AeroGardeners! It’s time to play “Guess What’s Growing Wednesdays!”. I really thought I had you guys stumped last week but you guys just know your plants to well! This week’s plant is known as one of the easiest plants to grow. These plants grow in a variety of colors except for blue. Know what it is leave a comment below this photo on our Facebook Page.

https://www.facebook.com/aerogarden/?fref=ts

 

ROASTED SALMON WITH POTATOES AND HERBED CRÈME FRAÎCHE

ROASTED SALMON WITH POTATOES AND HERBED CRÈME FRAÎCHE 03.14.2016

Hey AeroGardeners, want a delicious receipe for dinner tonight? Check out this receipe for ROASTED SALMON WITH POTATOES AND HERBED CRÈME FRAÎCHE, can you say yum! Courtesy of Epicurious.com

Crème fraîche delivers tang along with creamy butterfat to this deconstructed salad; Greek yogurt can be substituted if you wish.

YIELD4 servings
INGREDIENTS

Potatoes:
1 1/2 pound small waxy potatoes, scrubbed
Kosher salt
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salmon and assembly:
1 1 1/2-pound piece skin-on salmon
1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
Kosher salt
1/2 cup crème fraîche
2 tablespoons chopped fresh chives, dill, and/or tarragon, plus tarragon and dill sprigs for serving
2 radishes, trimmed, thinly sliced
PREPARATION

Potatoes:
Place potatoes in a medium saucepan and add cold water to cover by 1″; season with salt. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer until tender, 15-20 minutes; drain and pat dry. Let cool slightly, halve potatoes and toss with oil; season with salt.
Salmon and assembly:
Preheat oven to 400°. Place salmon, skin side down, on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet; rub with 1 tablespoon oil and season with salt. Roast until medium-rare (mostly opaque but still slightly translucent in the center), 10-15 minutes. Break up salmon into pieces, removing skin if desired.
Whisk crème fraîche and chopped herbs in a small bowl; season with salt.
Spread herbed crème fraîche on plates and top with salmon, potatoes, radishes, and tarragon and dill sprigs; drizzle with oil.