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Recipes for Realtors: Orange date chocolate cheese salad and salmon sandwich

This could be a salad for one or ratio increase to serve multiples.

Choose a sweet juicy orange. Using a sharp serrated knife, remove the peel completely including the white pith. Carefully start by cutting a thin piece off the top and bottom of the orange to make access easier to peel off the side rind.

Slice the orange in quarter-inch thick horizontal slices. Pour the escaping juice on the cutting board into a bowl with the orange slices.

Drizzle the orange slices with Bacardi Fiero Vermouth (orange notes) or use your favourite orange liqueur. Gently stir in a tablespoon of fork-mashed St-Germain Elderflower liqueur marinated medjool dates from your refrigerated container.

Add a tablespoon of my kumquat marmalade. If you don’t have it, use a store-bought bittersweet orange marmalade. Refrigerate in a glass container, covered. It’s always recommended to work with glass, not plastic, when preparing acid-based foods.

When ready to serve, drizzle the orange mix with your most expensive rich thick olive oil treat. Scatter your favourite sliced olives, black or green. Sprinkle fresh ground pepper.

Note: Instead of drizzling with olive oil, drizzle with your Mazola Corn Oil Jalapeño Oil, from your pantry jar. But only if you love and can tolerate “heat,” because although the jar of hot peppers is delicious, being jalapeños the wonderful oil is indeed hot! My jalapeño oil is a fabulous dipper for toasted buttered black-olive bread.

In a separate dish, grate using a coarse rasp a little fresh Parmesan block or wedge of cheese or Sartori BellaVitano Raspberry Ale cheese. Paper-thin ribbons of almost sweet Norwegian lite Jarlsberg cheese can be a wonderful switch-up.

In the same dish, again using the coarse side, grate a teaspoon of bitter dark chocolate (65 to 85 per cent).  Sprinkle the cheese chocolate with a generous bit of Atlantic Ocean Amagansett sea salt finishing flakes. Use a fork to marry gently.

Set aside the chocolate cheese salt.

Prepare a mesclun salad or use Boston Bibb organic hydroponic lettuce. When ready to serve, scatter the sliced orange date mix over the lettuce plate and scatter with the cheese salt chocolate mix. Do not stir.

Just a salad – but no ordinary salad

Process the orange in oil date cheese mix in the food processor until it is nearly a paste. Scrape down the bowl sides to save every drop. Put the paste into a cheesecloth and squeeze out any excess oil. Mix the chocolate cheese orange mix into a thick dark chocolate ganache. Add a generous mix of crushed homemade candied nuts from your pantry jar. Refrigerate.

Using a tablespoon and moving quickly, form one-inch balls. Roll some of the truffles in a dish of sea salt flakes, others in desiccated coconut, still others in plain dark chocolate powder that you use to make hot chocolate drinks. You might even dredge in fine ground dried orange zest or grind a mix of dried mixed candied citrus from your pantry sugar jar.

For an exceptional use, place a mix of these truffles on the side of an entree of pan-fried liver and onions. What a surprise tastebud WOW treat!

Christmas salmon sandwich

Toast your favourite multigrain sandwich bread. Butter generously with unsalted butter or use a compound butter coin from your frozen reserve currency.

Cover the base slice with several crispy bacon rashers. Before cooking the bacon, cut each rasher in half so when it’s cooked you have the perfect sandwich bread size. Top with layers of delicious fresh sweet lox or mounds of paper-thin napkins of frozen Norwegian smoked steelhead salmon.

Smear my homemade cranberry mayonnaise on the top bread slice. Add a mound of frisée lettuce. Close and cut the sandwich on the diagonal. It’s a most delicious after-the-holiday-season treat.

If you have refrigerated mashed marinated in St-Germain Elderflower medjool dates (they keep for months), spread the dates on the slice before the smear of cranberry mayonnaise. If you have homemade date syrup, drizzle it over the frisée. You could substitute a drizzle of second season maple syrup or even your favourite honey. My favourite honey is Orange Blossom Honey from Israel.

This delightful unusual special salmon sandwich can be served all year round.

As an alternate you could use any of my leftovers salmon recipes.

For any salmon leftovers, if not a sandwich or even an open-face crostini or tapas, maybe make a few spoons of salmon salad by adding a little of my mustard sauce into your homemade mayonnaise. Finely mince a chive thread and scatter. A little shredded coconut or minced crunchy water chestnuts (they’re delicious and they come in a small tin) or even celery add texture. You could add a bit of citrus (even a quarter of special orange slice from above bowl).

Spoon a little salmon salad into a fresh bite-size tuile nest or fill a pâte à choux for a delightful amuse bouche.

If you are fortunate to have delicate Arctic char, don’t waste even a spoonful. Switch it up like the salmon. Maybe add a tiny bit of my cranberry mayonnaise. Mouth watering yet?

Watch in 2021 for part of my gourmet cookbook series:

From Lady Ralston’s Kitchen to Canadian Expats: Inspirations and Ideas ~ from back home. Speaking to Canadian Expats home cooks relocated around the world… Our Kitchen Expats

Spirits in My Kitchen: Lady Ralston – Canadian Cooking with Bouquets and Aromas – Good Food Made Better Adding Spirits

Taste the Sea ~ Seafood from Lady Ralston’s Canadian Contessa Kitchen: Crustaceans, Fish ~ lobster, shrimp, crab, mussels, clams, oysters, scallops, salmon, sea salt and more… Fruits de Mer: Jewels of the Sea