Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Weeknights with Giada!

Weeknights with Giada
Quick and Simple Recipes to Revamp Dinner
by Giada De Laurentiis

Hardcover, 240 pages
Also available as an eBook 

Another beautiful book from The Food Network's darling, Giada De Laurentiis! In this cookbook, Giada kicks off her heels and gets comfy with quick and easy family cooking. The recipes are indeed simple, relying on a good mix of fresh ingredients and pantry staples to get a family-friendly meal on the table with little fuss.

This book follows in her style of beautifully presented and photographed recipes, but takes into account how busy families can be these days. The ability to get good food on the table quickly and with ease is important to everyone these days. Sure, we like to take our time when we have it, but many nights we just don't have the time or energy.

Weeknights with Giada delivers on its promise of quick and simple recipes to revamp dinner - busy nights don't have to mean take-out - especially when you can make tastier food at home!

This weekend we tried out Giada's Chicken with Tarragon and White Wine - Deliciously tangy and deeply satisfying - and easy!

I paired the chicken with a simple salad and Giada's Carrot and Yam Purée, what a great alternative to mashed potatoes! Good for the body too. These will both be on regular rotation for us from now on.

And to top those off... I baked up her Apricot Oat Bars -a soft and delicious dessert, halfway between a granola bar and a cookie. I might just eat them all myself.

Photo courtesy Amy Neunsinger, Weeknights with Giada
Giada invites you to try out her Salmon Cakes with Lemon-Caper Yogurt Sauce from her new book, Weeknights with Giada!

Salmon Cakes with Lemon-Caper Yogurt Sauce

For all the salmon lovers, like me, this one’s for you. The salmon cakes can be prepared in an easy three-step process and served at room temperature. I use crushed saltine crackers instead of bread crumbs in the filling and to coat the salmon cakes because they keep their crunch and actually become crunchier as they cook.

Serves 4 to 6

Salmon cakes
1 (14.75-ounce) can boneless, skinless pink salmon, drained
1 large egg, beaten
1⁄3 cup chopped fresh chives
26 saltine crackers, crushed (1 1⁄2 cups)
1/2  cup frozen corn, thawed
1/4 cup mayonnaise, plus more as needed
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 tablespoon capers, rinsed and drained
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Sauce
1/2 cup full-fat plain Greek yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons capers, rinsed, drained, and chopped
1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

For the salmon cakes: Using a fork, flake the salmon into ½-inch pieces into a medium bowl. Add the egg, chives, 1/2 cup of the crushed crackers, the corn, mayonnaise, mustard, capers, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Mix gently until just combined. Form into 10 patties, each about ¾ inch thick (if the mixture is too dry to form into patties, add extra mayonnaise, 1 tablespoon at a time). Carefully coat the patties in the remaining crushed crackers and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat the oil and butter together over medium heat. Add the salmon patties and cook for 7 to 8 minutes on each side, until golden and crispy. Drain the patties on paper towels.

For the sauce: In a small bowl, mix the yogurt, capers, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, and pepper. Arrange the salmon cakes on a platter and serve the sauce alongside.

Excerpted from Weeknights with Giada by Giada De Laurentiis Copyright © 2012 by Giada De Laurentiis. Photographs copyright © 2012 by Amy Neunsinger. Excerpted by permission of Ten Speed Press, a division of Random House of Canada Limited. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

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