• Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen

    MUSHROOM SOUP

    I’ve been making this Mushroom Soup for over 35 years and I love it every time I make it.  Because it is a hearty, creamy soup I typically make this recipe in the winter – but it always satisfies.  With so many mushrooms it has an intensely deep, rich, umami flavor and has become a favorite of friends every time I share the recipe.  It’s a wonderful dish to make for a dinner party too – tastes so fancy but really quite easy to make.

    Many years ago, back in my college days, we used to frequent a restaurant called The Grape, located on Greenville Avenue, in Dallas, Texas.  The very reason we went was to order this wonderful and flavorful Mushroom Soup.  Thirty five years later, The Grape Restaurant is still going strong, it is still in the same location, and it still serves this favorite and now infamous, Mushroom Soup. (Update: sadly, The Grape closed its doors in October, 2019)

    Over the years, I’ve adapted The Grape’s recipe in an effort to lighten it up a bit and I infused in some of our Glory Kitchen Provence nut & spice mix to add a bit of French flair to the Mushroom flavors.  The Provence blend adds just the right amount of herbs with the thyme, marjoram, savory, and basil and the little currants give it a touch of sweetness – a nice flavor burst.

    Concerning the type of mushrooms to use in this soup, I don’t really fret with an exact variety.  When available, I do like to mix them up and try to include cremini, shiitake, oyster, and enoki mushrooms, but if all you can find is the typical button mushroom, don’t be afraid to go with that too.  Mushrooms of all varieties will work in this soup.  When they are sauteed and browned with the butter, the flavor becomes wonderfully intensified and makes a terrific soup no matter which variety mushroom you end up using.

    I am a true soup lover and this Mushroom Soup recipe is made at least once a year – I hope you enjoy it as much as we do and make it on repeat year after year.

    Margie Bruner - Glory Kitchen

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    MUSHROOM SOUP

    Ingredients

    • 1 tablespoon Provence nut & spice mix
    • 5 tablespoons butter
    • 2 medium onions, chopped
    • 3 celery stalks, chopped
    • ¾ lb fresh mushrooms, coarsely chopped
    • 4 tablespoons flour
    • 3 cups beef stock
    • ½ cup white wine
    • ¼ tsp. white pepper (or black if you don't have)
    • ¼ tsp nutmeg (freshly grated is preferred)
    • ½ cup heavy cream (or half & half)

    Instructions

    1. Melt butter in heavy stock pot. Add chopped onions, celery, and Provence nut & spice mix and cook over medium heat until the veggies are translucent. Add all the mushrooms and cook for 10-12 minutes, or until liquid has cooked out of mushrooms and they are soft. Lightly sprinkle in the flour and blend, cooking for a few minutes to remove the raw flour taste.
    2. Add the beef stock, and the white wine, just a bit at a time, whisking well to make certain there are no lumps. Once all the stock and wine have been added, add white pepper and fresh nutmeg and slowly bring the mixture to a boil. Immediately reduce the heat & simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove the pot from the heat source, slowly add cream and serve warm.

    Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen
    Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen
    Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen
    Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen
    Mushroom Soup - Glory Kitchen
  • Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen

    HOLIDAY CHEESE BALL

    This Holiday Cheese Ball is the perfect appetizer for upcoming parties and gatherings.  It is always a hit because really, who doesn’t love creamy cheese loaded with crunchy flavor?  The best part about this appetizer is threefold: first, it is made with only three ingredients; second, it takes no time at all to put together, and finally, you can make it ahead and serve at room temperature when guests arrive.  That is what I call perfect party fare.

    I call this a Holiday Cheese Ball because it seems so appropriate for winter party gatherings but don’t be fooled by the name, it is just as good served at all times of the year.  For spring or summer seasons I would pair it with sweet strawberry, peach, or blackberry jam but during the Christmas season I love serving this spicy and flavorful Holiday Cheese Ball alongside a cranberry compote or fig jam.  The sweet, fruity jam, the creaminess of the cheese, and the pungent notes of seeds and herbs from the Indian flavors of our Mumbai nut & spice mix make for a tasty combination.

    This Holiday Cheese Ball is made by mixing cream cheese and Monterrey Jack cheese, then crusted with our spicy Indian nut mix, but all flavors of our Glory Kitchen nut & spice mixes work beautifully crusted on a cheese ball.

    For a different twist you could try a mix of cream cheese and Manchego or Queso Fresco and then crust it with our Mexican flavors of San Miguel nut & spice mix.  Or take it in a Mediterranean direction with a cream cheese and feta combination crusted with our Cairo nut & spice mix.  Another fabulous cheese combination (and one I make often) is cream cheese and goat cheese crusted with our Provence nut & spice mix.  There are so many combinations; each one has its own delicious flavor twist and they make a lovely presentation crusted in colorful seeds, nuts, herbs and spices.

    I like to make the cheese ball ahead, refrigerate wrapped in plastic wrap, then serve at room temperature when the guests arrive so the cheese is soft and creamy for spreading.  My favorite pairing is with fresh baguette slices but any type of cracker works perfectly as well.

    With our Glory Kitchen spice blends on hand, you’ll always be ready to throw together a true crowd-pleasing appetizer.  You don’t even need a recipe.  It’s just that simple.

    Margie Bruner - Glory Kitchen

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Holiday Cheese Ball

    Yield: about 6-8 persons

    Ingredients

    • about 1/4 cup Mumbai nut & spice mix
    • 1 block (8 ounce) cream cheese
    • 1 block Monterrey Jack cheese, shredded
    • fresh parsley, for garnish
    • 1 jar cranberry jam or preserves (also would be great with fig jam, strawberry jam, or blackberry jam)
    • crackers or slices of fresh baguette

    Instructions

    1. In a large mixing bowl, combine the cream cheese and Monterrey Jack cheese until they are incorporated well. I like to use my hands to get it well mixed together. Form into a ball.
    2. Take the Mumbai nut & spice mix and sprinkle it out onto a flat countertop, cutting board, or flat surface. Take the cheese ball and press it down firmly into the Mumbai nut & spice mix to crust the exterior of the ball. Move it around and continue pressing the cheese into the nut mix until the entire ball is completely covered in the blend. Wrap the cheese ball with plastic wrap and store in the refrigerator until ready to serve.
    3. I like to bring the cheese to room temperature before serving so it is creamy and easy to spread. Place the ball into the center of a serving dish and spoon a seasonal jam (I love cranberry at Christmas time but fig is delicious as well) all around the base of the cheese ball. Serve with slices of fresh baguette or with your favorite crackers.

    Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen
    Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen
    Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen
    Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen
    Holiday Cheese Ball - Glory Kitchen
  • Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen

    BISTRO BRAISED CHICKEN THIGHS

    I’m excited for this week’s recipe of Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs coming from a friend who is passionate about her food.  She loves checking out new restaurants, experiencing new food trends, and is an avid home cook – a true foodie in every sense of the word.  Julie Wojciechowski is an East coast girl who hails from Connecticut and with whom I bonded immediately when she first moved to Charlotte.  She is a lover of all things outdoors, is a serious yogi, and is my morning walking buddy.

    During a recent walk we chatted about our excitement for the onset of cool weather foods when Julie mentioned how much she loves to use her le Creuset braiser for her favorite slow cooked food recipes.  The term “braising” comes from the french word “braiser”, which is a combination cooking method using both wet and dry heats.  Typically, a protein is first seared at a high temperature to brown and bring caramelization to the exterior (this gives flavor), and then it is finished in a heavy iron pot with a lid and allowed to cook at a very low temperature alongside a braising liquid.  The result is a flavorful & tender, fall-off-the-bone dish.

    Julie’s recipe is a light chicken dish which uses thighs, one of the tastiest parts of a chicken.  It is braised with carrots, celery, and a secret sweet ingredient (dried plums), then seasoned with our Glory Kitchen Provence nut & spice mix, a mix of french herbs, chopped cashews, and dried currants.

    And although this recipe will tell you to serve this tender chicken over cooked egg noodles, Julie actually made homemade spaetzle as the base for her braised chicken.

    When she first told me we were going to make homemade spaetzle, I thought it sounded interesting but complicated.  To my great surprise, however, the recipe included 4 simple ingredients: 2 1/2 cups flour,  1 cup of milk, 2 eggs, and a pinch of salt.

    It literally took about 3 minutes to mix together with a fork, place the wet dough into her spaetzle maker, and boil the little pearl dumplings in a pot of hot water until they rose to the top, which meant the noodles were ready.  Total time?  No more than 3 minutes – and we had homemade spaetzle!

    The tiny dumplings were delicious little puffs and took the dish from tasty to spectacular.  I can hardly wait to get my spaetzle maker and do it all again on my very own.  If you aren’t ambitious enough to attempt homemade spaetzle noodles, don’t let this hold you back – a dried egg noodle will work magic as well.

    I hope you enjoy Julie’s delicious braised chicken dish.

    recipe by:
    Julie Wojciechowski

    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs

    Ingredients

    • 3 teaspoons Provence Nut & Spice mix
    • 2 tablespoon butter, divided
    • 8 (4-ounce) bone-in chicken thighs, skinned
    • 4 thinly sliced carrots
    • 2 onions, chopped
    • 1/2 cup thinly sliced celery (2-3 stalks)
    • 8 pitted dried plums, chopped
    • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
    • 2 cups chicken broth
    • 3/4 cup water
    • 1/2 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
    • 4 cups hot cooked egg noodles

    Instructions

    1. Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add chicken to pan; cook 6 minutes, browning on both sides. Remove chicken from pan; keep warm.
    2. Add remaining tablespoon butter to pan; swirl until butter melts. Add carrot, onion, celery, and dried plums; cook 4 minutes or until vegetables begin to soften, stirring frequently. Stir in Provence Nut & Spice mix; cook 30 seconds. Stir in mustard. Add broth and 3/4 cup water, scraping pan to loosen browned bits; bring to a simmer.
    3. Return chicken to pan. Cover, reduce heat, and simmer for 35 minutes. Uncover, increase heat to medium-high, and simmer until sauce is reduced by half (about 10 minutes). Stir in salt and pepper. Serve over cooked noodles.

    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
    Bistro Braised Chicken Thighs - Glory Kitchen
  • Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen

    BUTTERNUT, BRUSSELS, & WALNUT SALAD

    This Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with a Tangerine Vinaigrette is a delicious way to ring in the fall season.  It’s everything tasty about fall tossed together into one big bowl and it has all types of flavor –  roasted squash, crunchy brussels sprouts, tart cranberries, nutty walnuts, and creamy goat cheese.  This combination of ingredients makes a mighty flavorful salad that you’ll want to repeat over and over.  I’ve already made this salad twice and I’m serving it again for a gathering this week.

    This is a simple recipe but to make it quickly I recommend roasting both the butternut squash and the brussels sprouts the day before and store them in the refrigerator until you are ready to assemble your salad.  The tangerine dressing could also be made ahead and stored in a mason jar in your fridge until you are just about to serve.  My best advice is to roast plenty of butternut squash and brussels sprouts because it is difficult to resist the temptation of snacking on them as they come out of the hot oven… better than candy!

    The dressing has a surprise ingredient of fresh tangerine juice which gives it a bright and citrusy flavor.  A drizzle of honey adds more sweetness but the best part is the surprise pinch of cinnamon and the Indian flavors from our Glory Kitchen Mumbai nut & spice mix.   This recipe will make plenty of dressing  so you may have some leftover for drizzling on raw veggies later or even to use as a marinade for salmon.  Hope you enjoy this Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with a Tangerine Vinaigrette as much as I have.

    Margie Bruner - Glory Kitchen

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Butternut, Brussels, & Walnut Salad with a Tangerine Vinaigrette

    serves about 6 salads

    Ingredients

      For the dressing:
    • 1 teaspoon Mumbai nut & spice mix
    • 1/2 cup olive oil
    • 1/4 cup white wine vinegar
    • 1/4 cup tangerine juice, fresh squeezed
    • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
    • 1/4 cup organic mayonnaise
    • 1 teaspoon honey
    • good pinch of salt
    • good pinch of cracked pepper
    • good pinch of cinnamon
    • For the salad:
    • 1 butternut squash, cubed & roasted
    • 3-4 cups brussels sprouts, quartered & roasted
    • romaine lettuce, chopped
    • arugula lettuce
    • 1/2 cup (or less) dried cranberries
    • 1/2 cup goat cheese crumbles
    • 1 cup walnuts, toasted & coarsely chopped
    • extra Mumbai nut & spice mix
    • for topping

    Instructions

      dressing:
    1. Place all of the dressing ingredients into a small mason jar and shake very well until it is completely emulsified together. Taste the dressing and adjust the seasonings. You may want to add a bit more honey if you prefer it a bit sweeter.
    2. salad:
    3. Peel and cube the butternut squash and place onto a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. To allow for easier peeling & slicing I like to place the entire butternut squash into the microwave and run it for 5 minutes or so, on high. Remove and allow to cool a bit. Cut in half, cut the ends off, then peel. Slice each piece in half, clean out the cavity with a spoon (I like to use a grapefruit spoon which has serrated edges). Then slice the butternut and cut into cubes. Drizzle the cubed squash with olive oil & sprinkle with sea salt. Place into a hot 450° oven for about 30 minutes or until the squash is a bit browned on the edges. Remove and cool completely. This can be done the day before and stored in the refrigerator.
    4. Take the brussels sprouts and cut off the ends, slice them into quarters then place on a parchment lined baking sheet and do the same as you did the squash; drizzle with olive oil, sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt, and throw into a hot oven, 450°, for a bit less time than the squash. You don't want to burn them so keep a close eye on your oven. I like to bake both sheets of vegetables at the same time. I also like to do this step well before I plan on assembling the salads.
    5. Slice up your romaine lettuce & toss together with the arugula (about equal parts of each). I typically like to toss them together with just a bit of dressing to lightly dress the lettuces but only use a bit so they don't wilt.
    6. Add the lettuces to each individual bowl or plate, top with butter nut squash, brussels sprouts, & dried cranberries. Top with toasted walnuts & goat cheese crumbles. You can finish with an additional sprinkle of Mumbai nut & spice mix.
    7. Serve the salads with the dressing on the side.

    Notes

    This dressing would also be wonderful with our Cairo, San Miguel, or Provence nut & spice mix.

    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Brussels, and Walnut Salad with Tangerine Dressing -Glory Kitchen
  • Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen

    ALASKAN COD EN PAPILLOTE (in parchment paper)

    An amazing way to bake fish is using this recipe for Alaskan Cod en Papillote, which means fish wrapped in a parchment paper packet or envelope.  Let’s face it, a fresh filet of wild-caught fish can be a pricey purchase and how many times have you tried to place it on the grill only to lose half the filet when it sticks to the grill or falls through the grates.  This is hands down my favorite way to work with a delicate piece of fish. The result is a tender, juicy and oh so flavorful dish.

    This method treats the fish delicately and the veggies alongside steam in their own juices and cook to tender perfection.  When the envelope emerges from the oven, a little snip of the parchment paper releases the most beautiful aroma.  I like to serve the packet on the plate with just a bit of a nip in the paper and then allow each person to gently rip open the packet to reveal fish filet perfection.  This is a complete meal in one packet – how easy is that?

    Don’t be afraid to use this baking method with all types of fish from salmon, to sea bass, to fresh-caught stream trout.  The choice of vegetables tucked inside your packet can vary with the seasons, zucchini, thinly sliced carrots, fennel, sliced cherry tomatoes, peppers, and the list goes on.  Our Provence nut & spice mix is the perfect seasoning for tender fish and fresh vegetables with aromatic french herbs and a touch of sweetness from dried currants.  The possibilities for this Alaskan Cod en Papillote dish are endless and the results – well, let’s just say I feel certain you’ll be wanting to make it again and again.  It is so, so simple and absolutely divine.  Enjoy!

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Alaskan Cod en Papillote (in parchment paper)

    Yield: 4 servings

    Ingredients

      For the marinade:
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
    • zest from lemon
    • 1 teaspoon Provence nut & spice mix
    • 1 1/2 teaspoon whole grain mustard
    • good pinch of salt
    • squeeze of honey
    • For the fish packet:
    • 1 1/2 - 2 pounds Alaskan Cod or other white fish, sliced into 4 filets
    • 1/2 red bell pepper
    • 7-8 fresh mushrooms
    • 1 cup haricot verts (french green beans)
    • 4 fresh lemon slices
    • 4 fresh sprigs of thyme

    Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven to 375°
    2. In a small bowl, mix together all the ingredients for the marinade and set aside.
    3. Cut the fish into 4 individual portions. Take an 18" piece of parchment paper and fold in half to create a crease in the center. Place a piece of fish near the crease, in the center of the parchment. Place a slice of lemon on top of the fish. Arrange the veggies around the fish and season the fish & veggies with a bit of sea salt. Drizzle the top of each fish filet and vegetables with some of the marinade.
    4. Fold the parchment paper over the fish and begin to crease the edges in an overlapping fashion beginning on one end and repeating all around until you have created a sealed packet around the fish and veggies (see photo).
    5. Repeat with remaining parchment and filets. Place the 4 packets on a baking sheet and bake for about 20-25 minutes, depending upon thickness of filet.
    6. Transfer the packet to a plate and carefully slice open with a knife or scissors. I like to cut an "X" right in the center then fold the paper back to reveal the delicious steam and aroma. You can choose to serve on a plate with the paper (my preference) or remove the contents onto a serving plate. Enjoy!

    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
    Alaskan Cod en Papillote - Glory Kitchen
  • Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen

    BELGIAN ENDIVE WITH WALNUTS AND BLUE CHEESE

    I’ve always thought little Belgian endive leaves made a pretty and graceful presentation because of their delicate shape.  This Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue Cheese Recipe is wonderfully flavorful and uniquely different – it would make a great first course at a dinner party.  When these little lettuces are baked in the oven, the tender and somewhat bitter endive leaves turn a buttery, salty flavor, a bit like the flavor of a tender steamed artichoke dipped in butter.  The blue cheese, walnut pieces, and Provence nut & spice mix add a nutty crunch and a sharp note of herb flavor which together with the buttery endive create a mouth watering combination.

    Belgian endive is a bitter lettuce from the chicory genus.  It has a small, narrow shape, white inner leaves and either yellow or red ruffled tips.  In this recipe I’ve used both the red and the yellow tipped varieties although the baking fades away some of the bright colorations you see when raw.  Sliced in half and baked, the bitter leaves mellow in flavor and become soft and tender.

    This Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue Cheese Recipe was a pleasant surprise because it is such a diversion from your typical salad flavors.  I served it directly on small salad plates as a first course to our meal but you could add a few delicate greens such as arugula or bibb lettuce to the base and place these endive halves right on top.  Hope you’ll try this uniquely flavorful recipe.

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Bluecheese

    Ingredients

    • 1 teaspoon Provence nut & spice mix
    • 6 Belgian Endives
    • 1/8 cup clarified butter (ghee), melted
    • 1/2 cup walnuts, coarsely chopped
    • 1/2 blue cheese, crumbled
    • salt & pepper

    Instructions

    1. Preheat the oven to 375°. In a small bowl, toss together chopped walnuts, blue cheese crumbles and 1 teaspoon of Provence nut & spice mix. Mix well with your hands and then set this aside to use as a topping later.
    2. Carefully trim the endive, was and dry with a paper towel. Slice each bundle in half, lengthwise. Lay them in a baking dish, cut side up, and then drizzle with the melted ghee. Using your hands, gently ruby each endive half so the clarified butter coats it completely. Sprinkle them with salt and pepper then cover the baking dish with foil and place into the oven for 30 minutes.
    3. Remove the endive from the oven, uncover the foil, add the cheese/walnut topping onto each endive half. Place back into the oven, uncovered, for about 8-10 more minutes. At the very end, turn the oven on broil and stand by for about 1-2 minutes so the nuts will lightly brown and the blue cheese is melted. Remove and serve warm or allow to cool slightly and serve at room temperature. These are buttery delicious and would work in place of a salad at the dinner table.

    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen
    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen
    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen
    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen
    Belgian Endive with Walnuts and Blue cheese - Glory Kitchen
  • Citrus and Arugula Salad - Glory Kitchen

    CITRUS AND ARUGULA SALAD

    There is hardly anything prettier than the bright orange hues of winter oranges – this citrus salad recipe highlights their beauty.  I love to mix them up: tangerines, blood oranges, Cara-Cara oranges, grapefruits, Valencia oranges, and the list goes on.  They all have that signature bright, tangy flavor but each one has its own sweetness level and color profile.

    This Citrus and Arugula Salad is the perfect way to highlight the different varieties and create a bright, sunny platter during a cold and grey season.  Combined with tender arugula greens, sharp blue cheese, and a french vinaigrette infused with our Provence nut & spice mix, this salad can be a showstopper.

    Every winter I pull out my juicer and routinely make fresh squeezed citrus juice, a combination of squeezed grapefruits and various oranges.  It is the most energizing way to begin the morning.  Even better than juicing, however, is making this bright and cheery Citrus and Arugula Salad.  The presentation of these warm, sunny colors gets your mouth watering.

    I’ve kept the ingredients very simple so the oranges and grapefruit can take center stage.  Marjoram, savory, basil, and thyme are the perfect herbal addition to a typical French vinaigrette.  This dressing recipe is my go-to homemade dressing.  If you always have these basic staples in your pantry you can throw together the perfect salad dressing in just a few minutes.

    Commit to memory these dressing ingredients and their approximate ratios and you’ll always have perfect dressing for salads, proteins, fruits, and so much more.  I hope you’ll brighten up your winter with this bright and tasty salad.

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Citrus and Arugula Salad

    Yield: serves 4

    Ingredients

      For the dressing:
    • 4 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar
    • 2 teaspoons Provence nut & spice mix
    • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
    • 1 teaspoon honey
    • good pinch of salt
    • pinch of pepper
    • For the citrus salad:
    • 2 grapefruits
    • 4-6 oranges, a variety
    • 2 cups arugula, fresh
    • 1 very small block blue cheese
    • 1/4 cup pine nuts
    • olive oil

    Instructions

    1. Whisk together the ingredients for the dressing and set aside to allow the dry herbs in the Provence nut & spice mix to soften and reconstitute.
    2. Using a very sharp knife (I like to use a large chef's knife), cut each citrus on both ends to get a flat surface to place the fruit down and steady it. Now cut around the skin of each citrus fruit and carefully remove the skin around the entire fruit. Try to leave as much fruit intact but also remove all of the white pith around the flesh. (see photo for instruction). Now place the orange on its side and make even slices, about 1/4 - 1/2" thick. Place all of the sliced fruit in a bowl and set aside. I like to place each variety into its own small glass bowl to aid in the arranging of the platter. I also like to buy a variety of oranges such as Valencia, Cara-Cara, Blood, tangerine, etc. Each one has its own unique color and flavor and this adds to the presentation of the salad.
    3. Arrange the oranges and grapefruit on a large, pretty platter overlapping a bit and alternating colors. Using a large mixing bowl, take the arugula and drizzle it with a bit of olive oil and sprinkle it with a pinch of salt. Toss it gently with your hands. Arrange the dressed arugula around the citrus. Sprinkle it all with crumbles of blue cheese and toasted pine nuts.
    4. Drizzle the entire salad with the french dressing and serve.

    Citrus and Arugula Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Citrus and Arugula Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Citrus and Arugula Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Citrus and Arugula Salad - Glory Kitchen
  • Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen

    PERSIMMON MUFFINS

    Persimmons are a wonderful winter fruit and I’ve begun seeing this mysterious fruit more often in recipes – hence I’ve come up with a delicate and bright Persimmon Muffin Recipe to highlight this pretty little orange fruit.  I love the way a thinly sliced persimmon is perched atop the muffin as its ruffled edges curled and crisped during the baking process.  I’ve also added a touch of french herbs from our Glory Kitchen Provence nut & spice mix to add an interesting dimension of flavor.

    I was recently driving down the road in Charlotte and was caught by surprise as I whizzed by the sight of a bright, bare, orange-balled tree.  As I turned the car around to get a better view of this unusual sight, I realized it was a persimmon tree – and I had never before seen one in full bloom.

    These trees are quite rare around here and they are certainly a sight when their bare branches are bursting with large, bright, orange fruit.  I stepped out and photographed the tree, however, what I really wanted to do was return with a ladder and basket to gather persimmons for jam making.  With just a few from the farmers market, I made these muffins instead.

    I’ve heard the taste of a persimmon described in many ways: some say it tastes like an apple, others say it is like a mango.  Although I can see similarities to both of those, I actually think it has its own unique flavor.  The skin can be tough but for this muffin recipe I sliced it into horizontal rounds, then sliced it into sticks, then into cubes – all with skins on.  After baking in the muffin tin, the fruit was tender and very much resembled the texture of a chopped apple.

    If you’ve never tried a persimmon, this is a great recipe to give it a taste and highlight the pretty orange fruit right on top of your muffin.

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Persimmon Muffins

    Yield: 12 muffins

    Ingredients

    • 1 teaspoon Provence nut & spice mix
    • 2 cups all-purpose flour
    • 1 tablespoon baking powder
    • 1/4 teaspoon salt
    • 1/2 teaspoon allspice
    • 2 large eggs
    • 1 cup milk or cream
    • 3/4 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup butter, melted
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • 1 cup persimmons, chopped (about 2-3 depending upon size)
    • 1 whole persimmon (for the muffin topping)
    • mandolin (for slicing the persimmon very thin) or just use a chef's knife and cut very thin slices, horizontally.
    • melted butter (to brush on persimmon tops)

    Instructions

    1. Position the rack in the center of the oven. Preheat oven to 400°. Line a muffin tin with paper liners or lightly grease each well in the tin.
    2. Sift together in a large bowl the flour, baking powder, salt, and allspice. Stir in the Provence nut & spice mix, set aside.
    3. Whisk together in another large bowl, eggs, milk (or cream)sugar, butter and vanilla.
    4. Add the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and mix together until incorporated but you do not need to over-mix to get an extra smooth mix. Stir in the cup of chopped persimmons.
    5. Divide the muffin batter among the 12 muffin cups. I like to use an ice cream scoop to get equal amounts into each well. Now take your persimmon and either using a mandolin or a large knife, slice 12 very thin rounds, horizontally. (see photos). Place one on top of each muffin cup. Brush the top of each persimmon with melted butter.
    6. Bake in the oven at 400° for about 17 minutes or until the muffins are nice and puffed, the persimmon tops are curled on the edges, and a toothpick comes out clean. Allow to cool for a few minutes and serve warm if possible. With muffins, I often freeze any leftovers, wrapping them individually, so they can be pulled out the night before and enjoyed with a cup of coffee in the morning.

    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
    Persimmon Muffins - Glory Kitchen
  • Butternut, Beet, and Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen

    BUTTERNUT, BEET, AND FARRO SALAD

    One of the very best flavors of fall is roasted vegetables of the season – and butternut squash is probably on the top of my personal list.  The flavors of this veggie are THE best.  Here I’ve tossed them into a delicious Butternut, Beet, and Farro Salad – which celebrates this beautiful season’s flavors and colors.

    Let me begin by saying, butternut squash is amazingly tasty when roasted.  The only draw back, it has a very tough exterior and can be difficult to prep when peeling and slicing.

    An easy solution is to purchase this veggie already precut in the grocery store.  I’ve seen it at Whole Foods and a few other stores already cut into cubes, and although I did hand cut this one myself, it is soooo much easier to skip this step and buy it pre-cut.

    After it is roasted and softened in a hot oven, I also like to turn on the broiler for just a few minutes to brown and crisp up the top.  Remember, to never walk away from a broiler or you’ll risk burning your beautiful vegetables.  It only takes a minute to brown the tops so stand right by the oven with the light on and keep your eyes glued to the window.

    As for the kale in this salad, it helps to “massage” your kale.  That means chopping your fresh kale, drizzling it with a bit of extra virgin olive oil, a pinch of salt, and a sprinkle of our Provence nut & spice mix, then working it with your hands, massaging and breaking down the tough leaves.

    Set the large bowl of massaged kale aside while you prepare the rest of your salad ingredients.  The longer it sits, the softer and more seasoned your greens will become.  If  you thought you didn’t like kale because it was a tough and bitter green, this prep method might change your mind completely.

    And finally, the dressing.  This is one of my very favorite french vinaigrette dressing combinations and it works on so many different types of salads.  If you commit it to memory and have the basic ingredients on hand, you’ll always  be ready to whip up a fresh and delicious vinaigrette instead of resorting to an old refrigerator jar most likely filled with unfamiliar chemicals.  This dressing is brought to life with a teaspoon of Provence nut & spice mix, dijon mustard, and a drizzle of maple syrup (you can always substitute honey instead of the syrup).

    Don’t let the fall season pass you by without roasting a large batch of butternut squash and throwing it into not only this salad, but also in pasta, rice bowls, or even pureed to create a delicious sauce.

    Margie Bruner - Glory Kitchen

    Margie Bruner
    owner of Glory Kitchen

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    Butternut, Beet, and Farro Salad

    Yield: 4-6 servings

    Ingredients

      For the dressing:
    • 1 teaspoon Provence nut & spice mix
    • 1/4 cup olive oil
    • 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
    • 1 teaspoon maple syrup (or honey)
    • 1 teaspoon dijon mustard
    • good pinch of sea salt
    • pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
    • For the salad:
    • 1 small-med butternut squash
    • 5-7 beets
    • 2 purple sweet potatoes (or regular sweet potatoes)
    • olive oil
    • 5-6 leaves of fresh kale
    • 1 cup farro
    • 2 cups water
    • 2 teaspoons Provence nut & spice mix
    • 8-10 stalks fresh kale
    • olive oil

    Instructions

      For the dressing:
    1. Whisk together the ingredients for the french vinaigrette dressing and set aside.
    2. For the salad:
    3. Wash and dry the kale well. Remove the leaves from the thickest part of the kale stems and discard the stems. Chop the kale into small pieces - I like to chop them into smaller than bite-sized pieces. Add all the kale into a very large mixing bowl, drizzle with olive oil (about 2 teaspoons), sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt and about 1 teaspoon of Provence nut blend. Using your hands, massage the oil and spices into the kale. Continue massaging for a while until the kale becomes well coated and a bit softer. Set aside.
    4. In a saucepan, bring water to a boil, add the dry farro, 2 teaspoons Provence nut & spice mix and a good pinch of salt. Cover the pot and simmer for 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and leave the pot covered for an additional 5-10 minutes. Remove lid, fluff, and allow to cool.
    5. Peel and cube each of the butternut squash, beets and sweet potato. Place the cubes on baking sheets, making certain to separate out the beets from the sweet potato and butternut because the intensely red juices from the beets will bleed onto the other veggies. Drizzle them with olive oil, sprinkle with sea salt and toss well to coat the vegetables. Place the trays into a hot 425° oven for about 20-30 minutes or until the vegetables become tender. Once they are somewhat tender I like to put them under the broiler to lightly brown & crisp a few of the tops. Immediately remove from the oven and allow them all to cool.
    6. In a serving bowl, arrange the kale, farro, roasted veggies and finally drizzle with the french vinaigrette dressing. You can either present these salads with each ingredient sectioned out or toss in a large bowl with the dressing and serve into bowls. Enjoy!

    Butternut, Beet, and Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Beet & Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Beet & Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Beet & Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Beet & Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
    Butternut, Beet & Farro Salad - Glory Kitchen
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