Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Walnut and Oregano Velouté

This Walnut and Oregano Velouté is light and creamy, full of delicious nutty flavor with a touch of aromatic sweetness of oregano. It is great as a soup and also can be used as a sauce for pasta or ravioli. This version is vegetarian, and a vegan version can easily be created with butter and cream substitutes.


⅔ cup walnuts
2 tablespoons fresh oregano, chopped
2½ cups vegetable stock
2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons butter
½ cup cream
Salt, pepper to taste


1.In a food processor, place walnuts and oregano and mix until the the walnuts are finely ground. Add to a pot and cover with stock. Bring to boil and then turn the heat to very low.

2. Meanwhile, heat butter in another pot until just starts to foam, then swirl in the flour and stir until a paste forms (do not brown). Add the walnut and stock mixture slowly, stirring, and cook for about 1 minute or until the mixture is smooth and just starts to thicken. Strain through a fine mesh strainer.

3. Add cream, season with salt and pepper to taste, and blend with an immersion blender.

Sweet Potato Salad

Sweet Potato Salad (Serves:6)

Cook time: 30 minutes


¼ cup red wine vinegar
5 garlic cloves, 2 minced and 3 peeled but whole
2 teaspoons cumin
½ teaspoon smoked paprika
dash chili powder
1 teaspoon salt
½ cup extra-virgin olive oil
3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1½ to 2 inch chunks
2 poblano peppers, seeded, roasted, skinned and diced*
2 cups corn
2 red bell peppers, diced
3 scallions, chopped
½ cup cilantro, chopped


1. Whisk together vinegar, seasonings and the two minced garlic cloves. Slowly whisk in olive oil; set aside. Boil sweet potatoes and remaining three whole garlic cloves in salted water just until fork tender – approximately 20 minutes. Drain and let cool, discarding garlic cloves.

2. In a large serving bowl, stir together vinaigrette, poblano peppers, corn, bell peppers, scallions and cilantro. Add sweet potatoes and toss together. Add additional salt and coarse black pepper to taste.