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pimiento soup
Pimiento Soup with Mascarpone

salmon with white beans
Pan-Fried Salmon with
Warm White Bean Salad

barleu with green garlic
Barley with Green Garlic
and  Chives

Menu Plan for the week of April 12, 2013: Friday's Recipes

Pimiento Soup with Mascarpone
Sautéed Salmon with Warm White Bean Salad
Barley with Green Garlic and Chives

Cooking time:  35 minutes for menu          Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

   This is a fairly quick, almost pantry, dinner to start the weekend.  If your weather permits, do the salmon on the barbecue grill, brushing with oil and vinegar before grilling.

Pimiento Soup with Mascarpone                     Preparation and cooking time: 25 minutes
      A simple soup, made with pantry ingredients, bursting with color and flavor.

2 shallots
7oz (200gr) drained pimentos or roasted red peppers  net weight
15oz, (450gr) whole tomatoes with juices
1/2 tsp paprika, smoked or sweet
2 tsp olive oil
3 tbs mascarpone

Peel shallots and slice into rings.  Heat oil in a small saucepan.  Add shallots and sauté until starting to brown and get crisp.  Select a few of the nicer ones for garnish, remove and set aside.  Drain pimentos and add to saucepan.  Add tomatoes and their juices along with the paprika.  Bring to a boil, cover, reduce heat and simmer 10 minutes. Purée in blender or use an immersion blender. Gently stir in mascarpone but not completely, leaving swirls of white, and serve, garnished with reserved shallot rings.

Pan-Fried Salmon, Warm White Bean Salad    Preparation and cooking time: 25 minutes
    Salmon cooks quickly and is done when just barely opaque, and starting to flake easily.

2 salmon fillets, 12oz (350gr) total weight
1 tbs olive oil
1 tbs Balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 cups (15oz, 450gr can, drained) white beans
1 small - medium carrot
2 shallots
1 rib celery
2 cloves garlic
1/4 cup Greek olives
1 tsp basil
1 tbs oil
1 tbs Balsamic vinegar
2oz (60gr) spinach

The salmon: Heat the oil and vinegar over medium heat in a large skillet.  Add salmon, skin side up, and sauté 3 minutes.  Turn, skin side down, and sauté another 3 - 5 minutes, until done. Slip the salmon off the skin and serve.
The Salad:  Roughly chop the shallots, carrot and celery.  You should have about 1/3 cup of each.  Mince the garlic.  In a medium skillet over medium heat, sauté the carrot, celery, shallots and garlic in olive oil until tender, 5 - 8 minutes. 
Pit olives if needed; cut in half.  Open, drain and rinse beans.  Add olives, beans, basil and vinegar to skillet.  Heat through.  Serve salad on a bed of spinach, next to the salmon.

Barley with Green Garlic                                    Preparation and cooking time:   25 minutes
     Barley is a hearty, nutritious grain; easy to cook and flavorful. Here we dress it up for spring with fresh chives and green garlic.

1/2 cup quick-cooking barley
1 cup (8oz, 240ml) chicken stock (or more, depending on type of barley)
2 green garlic    substitute 1/2 cup sliced leek or 2 green onions and 1 clove garlic
2 tbs fresh, snipped chives   substitute dried chives
2 tsp olive oil

Trim green garlic and slice, using as much of the green tops as reasonable or trim, slice leek and mince garlic.  Sauté green garlic (or leek and garlic) and chives in oil in a small saucepan for 2 minutes.  Add stock, barley, cover and simmer until done, stirring occasionally.  Fluff and serve.

Cooking Schedule: 35 minutes for menu
Assemble all ingredients and utensils
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
scissors, 2 small saucepans with lids, 2 medium
skillets with lids, blender

Peel all shallots, carrot
Slice shallots for soup, sauté
Chop shallots for salad
Chop carrot, celery for salad
Mince garlic
Trim green garlic, slice
Snip chives
Pit black olives, cut in half
Open, drain pimentos / red peppers
Remove a few shallot rings
Add pimientos to shallots for soup
Add tomatoes, paprika to soup, cover, simmer
Wash spinach if needed, dry

Sauté shallots, carrot, celery, garlic for salad
Open, drain, rinse beans
Heat oil, vinegar in skillet for salmon
Add salmon, sauté
Sauté green garlic, chives for barley
Add beans, olives, basil, vinegar to vegetables
Cover vegetables, turn heat off
Add barley, stock to green garlic, cover, simmer, low
Turn salmon
Purée soup
Cover salmon, turn heat off
Stir mascarpone into soup, ladle into bowls
Garnish soup, serve
Done?  Check barley, increase heat if needed
Put salmon back on heat if needed
Arrange spinach on 2 plates, top with bean salad
Add salmon
Fluff barley, serve

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