Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Herb and Honey Goat Cheese Tart with Fig Preserves and Prosciutto di Parma


Recently I was contacted by the lovely people at Legends from Europe to try my hand at creating a dish that would highlight one of their deliciously high quality products. I jumped at the chance and was very excited to find out that my assigned ingredient was Prosciutto di Parma.
I mean, really, who doesn't love Prosciutto di Parma?!
I decided to make a delicious appetizer that would be perfect for the upcoming holiday season. It's delicious, impressive and totally easy and quick to make.

The sweet fig, creamy goat cheese and flaky pie crust make the salty deliciousness of the Prosciutto di Parma really shine!
Herb and Honey Goat Cheese Tart with Fig Preserves and Prosciutto di Parma
1 good quality, refrigerated prepared pie crust
4 ounces room temperature goat cheese
1 Tablespoon honey
1 1/2 teaspoon fresh lemon thyme, minced
1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1 clove garlic, finely minced
2 Tablespoons fig preserves
4 ounces thinly sliced Prosciutto di Parma
1 Tablespoon flat leaf parsley, chopped
First, pre heat your oven to 425 degrees. Unroll your pie crust onto a baking stone or cookie sheet. In a small mixing bowl combine the goat cheese, honey, lemon thyme, black pepper and garlic.
If you don't have lemon thyme, traditional thyme is a perfectly fine substitute. I just happen to have a gorgeous lemon thyme plant growing in my garden so that's what I cut today!
Spread the goat cheese mixture over the pie crust evenly and then place dabs of the fig preserves sporadically throughout.
Bake for 13-15 minutes or until the crust and cheese is nicely browned
Once the crust is done layer the Prosciutto di Parma on top and sprinkle with parsley
Slice and serve.
The great thing about this tart is that it is equally good warm fresh from the oven, or cooled to room temperature. If it lasts long enough to come to room temperature that is....

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Cooking Up a Storm

It's been embarrassingly long since I've sat down to blog, but I have very good reasons, I promise!
 I have been so blessed lately, and I'd love to share a small glimpse of my food adventures and what I've been up to lately.
First up, is quite possibly the biggest and best. At least in the world of competitive cooking, that is. The day after my birthday I found out that I made it as a finalist in the Pillsbury Bake Off and am looking forward to leaving, in just a little over a week, to meet this guy
haha!! Yes, I finally, after 7 years of trying am going to cook for a chance to win $1 million!
To say I'm excited wouldn't even begin to describe it. At all.
Here is what I'll be making:

Then I got news that I was a finalist in the Mushroom Council's Swap it or Top It Contest 
I was lucky enough to get enough votes to win First Place!!
The prize was a $1000 Williams Sonoma gift card, a ton of Mushroom Recipe Books and an "adopt a classroom" Fruits and Veggies Matter kit for my son's classroom!
Next on the list is the Minnesota Wild Rice
The "Get Wild with Wild Rice" contest
It got wild, alright and it was a race the entire time! I wasn't able to pull through and win, but I placed as a finalist and got a hat, t-shirt, assorted recipe booklets and 3 pounds of Wild Rice for my

I also entered a fun little snack for the "One Ingredient Can Change Everything Recipe Contest" put on by Grapes of California and placed 3rd!
My PB & Pretzel Snack Sticks with Grapes won me a $100 Visa giftcard and a signed book from Ellie Kreiger!
And last, but certainly not least- a BIG win!
A week ago Louis and I got to go to the NY Wine and Food Festival - I still am surprised I won and was given such an amazing opportunity from Colavita, Food and Wine Magazine and al Fresco
I entered my Smoked Andouille and Date Jam Flatbread and I'm thrilled they liked it as much as I do!
A trip to NY (somewhere we've never been before), a few nights in a beautiful boutique hotel, tickets to the NY Wine and Food Festival, a Colavita Sampler Tote and an al fresco “bag o’ loot” plus one year of al fresco all-natural chicken sausages!!
 We wandered through walls and walls and walls of wine, spirits and gourmet samplings all day long. We watched Iron Chef Morimoto break down a tuna that weighed more than I do in about 5 minutes.
I got to meet Rachel Ray, someone I've followed and loved for years, and get a book signed by her 
 And here are the two girls from Colavita that helped make our trip so successful
Seriously almost too good to be true!
New York was a dream and I'm hoping that Vegas will be just as thrilling!


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