Insalata Caprece (Video)
Executive Chef Stan Orelove prepares a favorite dish using two different plating techniques.
Bistro Gourmet Foods Balsamic Pot RoastDice 2 carrots, 2 celery stalks, and one medium onion. Mince 2 to 3 cloves of garlic. Take 2 to 3 lbs of chuck roast, preferably 7 blade chuck, season with salt and pepper and coat with flour. Brown both sides in 3 Tbs olive oil in Dutch oven or deep covered skillet. Add all the vegetables to the pot. Add 1/4 cup Barrel-Aged Italian Balsamic vinegar, 1/2 cup red wine and 12 oz beef broth. Add 1 tsp crushed thyme. Cover and simmer over low heat 3 hours or until meat is tender. Remove meat to warm platter. Thicken gravy as needed with flour. Serve sliced meat with boiled potatoes, noodles, or rice, and top generously with gravy.
Bistro Gourmet Foods Pork Medallions in Fig Cream Sauce
Salt and pepper pork medallions lightly. In a large heavy skillet sauté the pork in 2 Tbs olive oil until just browned. Do not overcook. Remove pork and keep in warm oven.
Add 1 Tbs. butter to same skillet. Sauté minced shallots for 2 minutes until tender. Add chicken stock and 1/4 cup Barrel-Aged Fig Balsamic vinegar. Simmer about 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Thicken with a little corn starch. Add half and half and accumulated juices from the pork platter. Simmer another 3 minutes, stirring frequently. Do not overcook. Sauce should have a little body but not turn dark brown.
Plate the pork medallions and divide the sauce evenly to cover. Serves 4 to 5.
* If you have fresh figs available, you may use them with Bistro Blends Heirloom Balsamic vinegar instead. Quarter 6-7 fresh figs and add them to the skillet after simmering the chicken stock and vinegar. Cook for about 3 minutes then continue with the corn starch and finish as directed.
Bistro Gourmet Foods Strawberry Balsamic Vinaigrette
Start with 1/4 cup pure or light olive oil**. Add 2 Tbs Strawberry (or Blackberry or
Barrel-Aged Italian) Balsamic Vinegar, 1 Tbs water, 1 tsp Dijon
mustard, a squeeze of fresh lemon, and a pinch of salt. Whisk briskly to blend.
Let sit for about 10 minutes for the flavors to mingle. Whisk again and toss
with your favorite greens. Adjust proportions to your taste, of course.
Quick and Easy Shrimp Pasta
Stop at the supermarket on the way home and pick up penne pasta, a red bell pepper, and a pound of pre-cooked medium shrimp at the seafood counter. While the pasta is cooking, seed and dice the red bell pepper. Sauté the diced pepper in Bistro Blends Thai Sesame Ginger vinaigrette. When tender, toss in the shrimp and a little more Thai Sesame. You just want to warm the shrimp up as it is already cooked. Drain the pasta and toss it in Thai Sesame or Bistro Blends Pure Garlic Oil. Serve the pasta with the shrimp and diced pepper mixture spooned on top. Salt and fresh ground black pepper to taste. Serve with a green salad and a nice white wine.
Variation: Linguine instead of penne pasta - use a green bell pepper sautéed in the Garlic Oil and toss the linguine in Bistro Blends Basil-Garlic Parmesan vinaigrette. Garnish with capers.
Bistro Blends Blackberry and Wine Sauce
I find the Bistro Blends Blackberry Balsamic Vinegar to be the absolute best in deglazing meat pans and making a flavorful sauce. After cooking the meat or fowl (superb with pork loin, pork roast, duck, or chops) transfer it to a platter and place it in a warm oven. Skim most of the fat from the pan. Add a splash of Bistro Blends Blackberry Balsamic Vinegar and a splash of your favorite red wine. Reduce over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until it thickens a bit. Slice the meat, arrange on the serving platter, and pour the blackberry and wine sauce right down the center of the slices. Makes my mouth water just writing this.
Bistro Oil over Pizza
My son (at age 14) says being a gourmet chef isn't hard at all. He cooks up a frozen, self-rising crust pepperoni pizza according to package directions and then uses Bistro Blends Garlic-Balsamic Bistro Oil on the top.
Easy tips from fellow fans
"I have to share with you that I just experienced food heaven! Here's the recipe: Baked garlic, hummus, with Bistro Blends Sun dried Tomato Balsamic on warmed pita."
"I recently made blackened red snapper which I let cool down, broke into small pieces, and served over spring greens drenched in Bistro Oil. It was nothing short of amazing!"
Gourmet French Fries
A tip from a loyal customer - hot French fries, lightly salted, drizzled with Bistro Blends White Truffle Oil and sprinkled with grated parmesan cheese. Decadent.
Keep in mind that the products are all vinegar and/or oil based. As such, where we say oil in the following recipes you can use any of your favorite flavors except when sautéing or grilling. To sauté or grill you should use a vinaigrette or an infused olive oil. Other than that the uses recommended for all the flavors are pretty much interchangeable. Adjust the quantities to fine tune the recipes. Use your imagination and trust your taste buds.
The most common use of the oil is with a fresh-baked sweet baguette or Italian-style bread. The oil seems to be best represented on a flat plate so that you get an even ratio of oil to vinegar. A bowl might give you an uneven ratio of oil to vinegar. The oil is excellent in this fashion as an hors'd'eurve. I recommend a good soaking when dipping. Recommended wine with the oil is a spicy red like a Zin or a nice Chianti.
This is one of the most common ways to use the oil. Just apply on the top of a freshly mixed salad and lightly toss. One of my favorite salads is an Italian classic, the Insalata Caprese. This salad consists of sliced tomatoes intermixed with sliced Buffalo Mozzarella cheese, surrounded by fresh Basil leaves, sprinkled with freshly cracked black pepper and then drizzled with the Bistro-Oil.YUMMMMMMM! I've also been told of folks using the oil to complete a Greek-type of salad cucumbers, tomatoes, etc. Just yesterday, I was told of a fabulous use by tossing a fresh fruit salad with the oil. I know it sounds different, but I tried it last night and was blown away! The fruit I used was sliced peaches, mandarin orange slices and then finished it with Feta cheese. Awesome! A bean salad is another great summer salad to make with the oil.
A Dressing Addition
If you enjoy Artichokes, then you will love learning that you can mix the oil with Mayo to make a fantastic dip for artichokes or other veggies. This recipe was courtesy of my friend Jim, who is enjoying the oil often and is responsible for several outstanding culinary ideas that I am considering putting into action. Thanks Jim!
The oil has turned out to be a savior to the age old idea of marinating that good-old piece of chicken, fillet or tofu. Just fork your meat of choice, dress the item generously and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. The longer the better. Let the flavor of the garlic and vinegar soak well and you will not be let down. Vegetables also marinate well for grilling or for pan-roasting. Halved-artichokes that have been marinated grill in a wonderful manner.
Sauce Reduction for Meats, Polenta
One of my favorite recipes for Barrel-Aged Italian Balsamic Vinegar is to make a reduction for meats or pasta. You'll need three equal parts of the vinegar, veal or beef stock and your favorite red wine. Hard boil them together for about twenty minutes. When it's finished reducing you will have a rich, dark, sweet demi-glace that will be the envy of anyone that enjoys this in a meal. It is absolutely amazing and very simple to make.
This is a way to use the oil that I use the most myself in my own kitchen. I will sauté all my meats and veggies in my sauté pan. Mushrooms with scallions or onions work very well like this. Meats, especially steaks of all kinds are delicious when using the oil. Fresh fish steaks like Halibut, Orange Roughy, Salmon or Sole are excellent candidates for pan-roasting.
If you plan on grilling would recommend brushing your meats, fish or vegetables with the oil. Portabello mushrooms are also delicious when finished with the oil before and after cooking.
I was just informed that if you combine one small can tomato sauce, 1/4 cup white wine, about two ounces Bistro-Oil, 1/3 cup brown sugar You will have one outstanding BBQ Sauce that will make you the envy of all your friends. Ssh, this will just be our little secret :) It's excellent on chicken, so the young lady said.
Another loyal customer told me that if you mix the oil into Pesto you can use it on freshly prepared pasta or salads.
That last idea reminded me of another idea. If you cook your favorite pasta, Bistro-Oil is excellent as a finishing dressing for pasta. One of my favorite styles is Angel Hair or Penne.
Yet another outstanding use is to create garlic-balsamic flavored croutons for your salad. Start out with a bowl of cubed, fresh bread. Generously apply the oil to the bread in the bowl. Toss. Lay the dressed croutons out on a cookie sheet and oven roast for about 10 to 12 minutes at about 375 degrees. Please keep an eye on them so as to not overcook. Let me know how this turns out as I haven't actually tried this one yet.
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