Vietnamese Shrimp and Vegetable Spring Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce

As our State is starting to reopen the economy, part of me is going to miss this “time at home.” I’ve realized how much I’ve recognized, appreciated and enjoyed the simple things of life so much more over these last couple months.  I was emailing a few of my other monastic friends across the country and we have similar stories.  We’ve spent more time just being, praying the offices on behalf of the world, quieting ourselves down and trying to listen more to His voice. I hope I don’t lose what I’ve gained from this experience!  I’ve also had time to do some festive cooking. This weekend I decided that our travel ban didn’t refer to in house international cuisine. So, here’s a yummy, fresh and healthy recipe that can be used to cool you down on a hot summer’s day.  If you’re a vegan, substitute the shrimp with some red pepper or thinly julienned beet. It will be just as delicious.  Enjoy!

 

 

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Vietnamese Shrimp and Vegetable Spring Rolls with Peanut Dipping Sauce
SERVINGS
8
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
5minutes
PREP TIME
1hour, 15 minutes
READY IN
1hour 30 minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

Prepare the Peanut Sauce
  1. Put all the ingredients in a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Taste and adjust seasonings. Thin with warm water if desired. This recipe will make more peanut sauce than you need, so store in a clean jar in the refrigerator for another use.
Spring Rolls
  1. Take one rice paper wrapper and dip it into warm water in a pie plate for 10 seconds to wet it and make pliable. Lay the wrapper down on a clean work surface (wooden cutting board works great here)and smooth it out with your damp hand.
  2. Take a leaf of lettuce and tear it into large 5-inch pieces and place it along the bottom half of the wrapper (see image) Place some rice noodles on top of the lettuce followed by a couple thin slices of avocado. Place a few carrots and cucumbers beside the lettuce, 2 pieces of scallion (or more) and then your shrimp sliced in half across the middle, pink side down. If desired, add some mint, basil or cilantro.
  3. To roll, gently fold over the left and right sides of the rice paper wrapper over the filling. Then fold the bottom part of the wrapper over the filling and gently but tightly roll up the spring roll, burrito style. Repeat steps 1 to 3
  4. Chill until ready to use. Serve with peanut sauce or another favorite dipping sauce

Spring! Kale and Chickpea Grain Bowl

Easy peasy lemon squeezy. This catch phrase from a British advertisement in the 1950’s aptly describes this week’s blog: a kale and chickpea grain bowl with a bright shot of lemon! Fresh and easily put together, this decidedly spring recipe reflects the changes in the gardens around our community: a riot of daffodils in the orchard, brave pansies and primroses blooming despite residual winter chill, delicate cherry blossoms and lush magnolias are all in force. These blooms never fail to inspire hope each year and the promise of better days ahead.

 

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Spring! Kale and Chickpea Grain Bowl
SERVINGS
4
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
20minutes
PREP TIME
10minutes
READY IN
30minutes

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Drain chickpeas and pat dry with paper towels. Heat canola oil in a large skillet over high. Add chickpeas and carrots. Cook until chickpeas are browned.
  2. Add kale and cover to cook until kale is slightly wilted and carrots are tender.
  3. Add chickpea mixture, parsley, salt, and pepper to quinoa.
  4. To make dressing, process guacamole, olive oil, lemon juice, zest, garlic, and turmeric in a food processor until smooth.
  5. To serve, divide salad into bowls, drizzle with dressing and garnish with fresh lemon

Grilled Swordfish with Avocado Butter

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Multiple Reasons to Grill
I just love the summer evenings, not only the beautiful sunsets on Cape Cod but also the wonderful aromas being created by all of the grills cooking up wonderful dinners in our neighborhood. I often cook an entire dinner on a grill just to keep the heat down in our house and the dirty dishes out of the kitchen. The other evening, we celebrated one of our Sisters' 40th Birthday and she asked for swordfish since it was such a special celebration. This is one of my favorite swordfish recipes, I think you’ll love it too.
SERVINGS
4
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
20
PREP TIME
10
READY IN
40

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Place swordfish steaks in glass baking dish in a single layer
  2. Combine oil and next 4 ingredients in a small bowl; stir well. Pour marinade mixture over steaks; cover and marinate in the refrigerator for 2 hours, turning occasionally.
  3. Prepare Avocado Butter: Combine butter and avocado in a small mixing bowl; beat at medium speed of an electric mixer until smooth. Add the lime juice, zest, parsley, garlic, and salt; stir well. Cover and chill until firm. If desired, shape butter into small bowls before serving.
  4. Remove steaks from the marinade, reserving the marinade. Place marinade in a small saucepan. Bring to a boil; reduce heat, and simmer 5 minutes. Set aside.
  5. Preheat grill. Grill steaks over medium high heat for 9 minutes on each side or until fish flakes easily when tested with a fork, basting frequently with the reserved marinade (do not over cook).
  6. Serve fish off the grill with a ball of Avocado Butter on each steak. Garnish with parsley sprigs.

Community of Jesus

Blackberry Balsamic Salad with Crispy Fried Goat Cheese​ and Grilled Chicken​

We continue to enjoy the harvest from our gardens over these summer months. This week we had an abundance of beautiful lettuce, so we expanded our repertoire and tried out some new combinations for our guests at Bethany. The crisp, salty, creaminess of the fried goat cheese paired with the sweet and pungent combination of the blackberry balsamic vinaigrette is the key here. Summer is a wonderful time to experiment with all sorts of combinations in a salad. “The colors of a fresh garden salad are so extraordinary, no painter’s pallet can duplicate nature’s artistry.” Have fun creating, eating, sharing, and enjoying nature’s storehouse!

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Blackberry Balsamic Salad with Crispy Fried Goat Cheese​ and Grilled Chicken​
SERVINGS
4servings
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
servings
COOK TIME
10mins
PREP TIME
10 mins(30 mins marinate)
READY IN
30 mins

Ingredients

Instructions

Blackberry Balsamic Vinaigrette Dressing
  1. Mix everything well​ in the blender until smooth. Adjust seasonings to taste.​
Fried Goat Cheese
  1. ​Dredge the goat cheese slices/balls in the flour
  2. Dip in the beaten egg
  3. Dip in panko
  4. Fry in oil over medium heat until lightly golden brown before setting aside on paper towels to drain.
Salad
  1. Marinate the chicken in half of the vinaigrette for 30 minutes to over night before grilling over medium-high heat until​ golden and cooked through, about 2-5 minutes per side​. Set aside to cool and slice.
  2. Assemble the salad and enjoy!

Note: Best enjoyed while the fried goat cheese is still warm from frying!

Summertime Spinach and Turkey Cutlet Salad

This salad is a lovely and light “one platter” meal for those hot summer days. The warmth of the cutlets over the chilled baby spinach, cooks the leaves slightly, allowing you to bite into a refreshing combination of textures — soft and crunchy. I first served this on a hot day in Italy, and was taken by not only the beauty of the fabulous colors on the platter, but also the lemony and nutty flavors of the greens. Arugula can be substituted for the spinach, which will give it a more “peppery” flavor. Accompanied by a freshly made basket of rolls, you now have an elegant lunch. Andiamo Mangiare!

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Summertime Spinach and Turkey Cutlet Salad
SERVINGS
6
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
COOK TIME
20mins
PREP TIME
20mins
READY IN
1hr

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. Make your coating for the cutlets according to instructions above
  2. Salad Dressing: Mix all ingredients in a jar and shake well to combine. Taste and adjust seasonings as needed.
  3. Coating for Cutlets: Combine all of the above in a blender until fine crumbs are made – adjust seasonings to taste If cutlets are thick, pound with meat hammer until the cutlets are about ¼” thick. Put coating mixture in a small pan and coat both sides of the cutlets well with the crumbs.
  4. Coat the bottom of a cast iron or other heavy duty skillet with olive oil and 1 Tablespoon of butter (to prevent burning) and heat. Once sizzling, reduce the heat to medium, add the cutlets and brown on both sides. Tip: don’t turn the cutlets over until they are ready to “release” from the pan or else all the coating will come off the cutlet!
  5. Meanwhile, prepare your vegetables and fruit for the salad (slicing etc)
  6. Fill the bottom of your serving platter w/ the baby spinach and toss lightly with the dressing and then a sprinkling of onion salt and fresh parmesan cheese (or dress in a bowl and transfer to platter afterwards).
  7. Once the cutlets are cooked and while they are still warm, lay them over the bed of baby spinach, overlapping slightly to create some height in the center of your platter. Your baby spinach is going to cook slightly from the heat of the warm cutlets.
  8. Creatively, arrange your fruit and vegetables on top of the meat, and finish with a sprinkling of freshly grated parmesan cheese and red onion.
  9. Serve while the cutlets are still warm.

Bethany Sun-dried Tomato and Turkey Panini

Our community hosted a retreat day recently for Deacons from a local parish. We served this wonderful sandwich combination which was inspired by the flavors of Italy. Everyone raved and took pictures. Afterwards, the retreatants told us that this place was going to become their annual quiet-day destination. (We hope it wasn’t just based on the food, but we do know it plays a special part!)

As a young sister and chef-in-training, I was taught to pray before my menu preparation. Often the Holy Spirit will nudge us to serve food that triggers memories for people; either of their childhood, their nationality, or maybe a comfort food that would bring healing in a special way. To be used by God in this way is a blessing.

As Brother Lawrence so aptly put it, “We ought not to be weary of doing little things for the love of God, who regards not the greatness of the work, but the love with which it is performed.”
― Brother Lawrence, The Practice of the Presence of God

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Bethany Sun-dried Tomato and Turkey Panini
In Italian the word panino [pa'ni:no] is the diminutive form of pane (bread) and refers to a bread roll. Panino imbottito (stuffed panino) refers to a sandwich, but the word panino is also often used alone to refer to a sandwich in general. The plural form of "panino" in Italian is panini.
SERVINGS
4sandwiches
CHANGE SERVING SIZE
sandwiches
COOK TIME
15mins
PREP TIME
5mins
READY IN
20mins

Ingredients

Instructions

  1. To make the Sundried Tomato Mayonnaise, blend all ingredients together in a Cuisinart until smooth – adjust seasonings as needed
  2. Toast the Panini Bread
  3. Generously spread both sides of bread with the sundried tomato mayonnaise
  4. Layer the sandwich ingredients in this way: Lettuce Cheese Turkey Bacon Tomato Avocado Onion Salt and Freshly Ground Pepper Red Onion, if desired

Andiamo Mangiare!!