Thanksgiving Recipe: Acorn Squash Gratin


Acorn Squash Gratin

Featuring Gruyere and Nueske’s Bacon

From Chef Harold Moore of Commerce

We’re all about any recipe that celebrates the flavors of the season and combines them with the year-round indulgences of cheese and cured meat. Here’s a simple and delicious side dish that makes good use of the squash and apples that are abundant at the farmer’s markets this time of year.

1 quart acorn squash puree (Approximately. 3 roasted and peeled acorn squashes)

1 tablespoon brown sugar

3 tablespoons soft butter

1 firm apple diced

1 cup Nueske’s Bacon, cooked crisp and diced

1 cup grated Gruyere

Salt and pepper to taste

1. Heat acorn squash puree on the stove top. When it is hot, stir in the brown sugar and butter. Season the mixture with salt and pepper according to your personal taste.
2. Fill a one quart gratin dish (or other oven-safe dish) with the squash
3. Top the squash with the diced apple and bacon
4. Liberally sprinkle with grated gruyere cheese.
5. Bake the gratin in a preheated 400 degree oven until golden brown. (Approximately 15 minutes)

Thanksgiving Canapes

Thanksgiving Canapes

Featuring Twin Maple Farm Hudson Red, Cabot Clothbound Cheddar, Creminelli Americano, Boat Street Pickled Raisins & Urban Oven Crackers

From Beth Griffenhagen, Murray’s in-house Entertaining Maven

Beth is revered by the Made by Murray’s customers for her excellent entertaining and hosting advice, and by the Murray’s staff for her legendary gatherings. Here Beth divulges two simple canape recipes, made with all-American ingredients, to whet your guests’ appetite before your Thanksgiving feast.

Coast-to-Coast Canape

1 lb Twin Maple Farms Hudson Red
1 jar Boat Street Pickled Raisins
1 Baguette or 6 oz box of Urban Oven Crackers

Place a healthy portion (approx 1/2 oz) of room-temperature Hudson Red (cut or spread) onto thinly sliced baguette or an Urban Oven Cracker. Just before serving, top with a few Boat Street pickled raisins.

Yields 30-35 Canapes

This simple canape is the perfect thing to greet your guests with if you’re hosting a Thanksgiving celebration. Sweet and tangy pickled raisins complement the buttery richness of Hudson Red to create an unexpected harmony of flavors. Best of all, easy assembly means you have more time to spend with friends and family, or to put the finishing touches on the rest of the meal. Enjoy with a Riesling or a festive bubbly.

Americano As Apple Pie

1 lb Cabot Clothbound Cheddar
1 Creminelli Americano Salami
3-4 Fresh Local Apples

Cut a crisp variety of apple (we like Honey Crisp or Winesap) into thin, half-moon shaped slices. Toss apple slices lightly with lemon juice to prevent browning. Place a thin slice of Americano beside a few large crumbles of Cabot Clothbound Cheddar on top each apple slice.

Yields 30-35 Canapes

We’ve combined all the things that are great about American food today into one delightful bite – fresh, seasonal produce, artisanal cheese from a well-known American producer, and salumi that celebrates one of America’s favorite flavor profiles. If you plan ahead and prep the components in advance, you’ll only need a few minutes to put everything together before guests arrive.

Learn more on Holiday Entertaining from Beth on November 23rd

Thanksgiving Recipe: Chicken Mole Enchiladas

Chicken Mole Enchiladas

Featuring Maple Leaf Jalapeno Jack & Mozzarella Co. Queso Blanco with Chiles

From Chef Andres A. Barrera of City Winery

They do things a little differently for Thanksgiving in the Barrera household, and at Murray’s we support that. After all, what is Thanksgiving about if not family tradition and indulgence in delicious food? We would certainly be thankful to be served these enchiladas any day of the year.

2 QT water

½ carrot, chopped

1 celery stalk, chopped

¼ Spanish onion, peel off

1 bay leaf, whole

1 lb boneless skinless chicken breast

2 Tablespoons olive oil

½ cup Spanish onion, diced small

1 clove garlic, minced

2 cups canned tomatoes, smooshed by hand

1 small canned chipotle pepper, minced

½ cup Maple Leaf Jalapeno Jack cheese, grated

6 corn tortillas

½ cup mole poblano base *found in any respectable Mexican grocery store*

1 cup chicken broth

½ cup Mozzarella Company Queso Blanco with Chiles

Salt & Pepper

  1. Pre heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. In a saucepot, bring to a boil 2qts of water, the chopped carrots, celery, onion, bay leaf & 1½ Table spoons of salt.  Add the chicken breast and cook until still slightly pink in the center, think “mid-rare”.
  3. In a smaller saucepan heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil over medium flame & add the small diced onion & minced garlic.  Cook for about 4 minutes allowing to brown only very slightly.  Add the minced chipotle & smooshed can tomatoes along with some juice from the tomatoes. Season to taste with salt and fresh cracked black pepper.
  4. Reduce heat to low & allow to slowly cook until the chicken breast is finished cooking in the other pot.
  5. Remove the vegetables & the breast from cooking liquid and set aside 1 cup of the remaining chicken flavored broth.
  6. Carefully hand shred the hot chicken breast into long thick strips. Evenly divide the shredded chicken amongst the 6 corn tortillas. Sprinkle a generous amount of the Maple Leaf Jalapeno Jack cheese over the chicken. 
  7. Remove the tomato sauce from the stove & pour ½ of the sauce into an oven safe baking pan. Roll the tortillas into “flute” shapes and place flap side down into the tomato sauce lined dish.  Pour the remaining tomato sauce over the enchiladas and place into preheated oven for 8 minutes.
  8. In a small saucepan, bring to a boil, 1 cup of the reserved chicken broth.  Add ½ cup mole base & stir until the mole is thoroughly dissolved & has the consistency of melted chocolate.
  9. Carefully remove the enchiladas from the oven and transfer to plates.  Pour your desired amount of mole sauce over the enchiladas and crumble Cojita cheese over the top.
  10. Serve & enjoy!

Yields Six Enchiladas

Thanksgiving Recipe: Sweet Potatoes with Marshmallows

Sweet Potatoes with Marshmallows

Featuring Fiore Sardo

by Chef Shea Gallante, as seen in NY Magazine

This recipe was featured in the November 1st issue of NY Magazine. The addition of smoked sheep milk cheese makes it an even more decadent version of the classic Thanksgiving favorite.

10 medium sweet potatoes
1/4 cup pure maple syrup
3 sticks butter
2 cups heavy cream
2 star anise
1 tsp. fennel seeds
1 tsp. whole mace skins
1 tsp. white peppercorns
1 vanilla bean, split
1 garlic clove
3 sage leaves
2 oz. Fiore Sardo, grated
1 1/2 cups mini-marshmallows
Sea salt and pepper

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 295°. Poke holes in the sweet potatoes with a fork. Set potatoes on a 10-inch square of aluminum foil, and brush with maple syrup. Place 1 tablespoon of butter on top of each, and season with salt and pepper. Wrap each potato in foil and seal tightly. Bake wrapped potatoes in the oven for about 40 to 60 minutes, until fork-tender.

In a saucepan, add the cream, spices, vanilla bean, garlic, and sage, and heat to just below a simmer. Remove mixture from heat, season with salt and pepper, and cover, allowing mixture to steep. After about 30 minutes, strain the cream. In a small saucepan, melt the remaining butter and cook until just before it starts to brown.

Scoop the potatoes out of their skins and into a large saucepan. With a hand mixer, mash the potatoes on low for about 2 to 3 minutes. Allow the mixture to sit uncovered for 10 minutes. Slowly add the cream and melted butter to the potatoes, and blend with the hand mixer.

Spread the potato mixture into a baking dish, and sprinkle with the smoked cheese. When ready to serve, place the potatoes under the broiler until the top is golden brown. Remove, add the marshmallows, and return to the broiler to gratinée the marshmallows to a toasted brown (watching carefully to avoid burning). Sprinkle with sea salt and serve.

Murray’s Goes Global: Buffalo Will

Murray’s Grand Central Store Director, Will Whitlow, took a trip this October to Salone del Gusto in Northern Italy. On his trip he made a stop at Quattro Portoni, one of Italy’s premier water buffalo farms.

What comes to mind when you think of Italian cheese?  The great cow’s milk cheeses like Parmigiano-Reggiano?  Or the thousands of sheep milk pecorinos?  Eventually you will probably think of mozzarella from the south of Italy.  But is it really made from water buffalo milk?  You can’t imagine how often we’re asked just that.  Yes, the large, black, big-horned and wooly creatures produce astounding milk for cheesemaking.

Last week, I visited a unique farm in the province of Bergamo in Lombardy called Quattro Portoni.  In the last 10 years, the Gritti brothers, Alfio and Bruno, have transformed their family’s cow dairy into one of the standout water buffalo dairies in Italy.  Located in the heart of the Taleggio-making area, they were looking to distinguish their farm from those that sell milk to the big cheese plants that surround them.  Bringing the southern tradition of water buffalo to the north was exactly the right choice.

Quattro Portoni, or Four Gates, is named after the 13th century gates into their moat-encircled town of Cologno al Serio.  And a couple of their new, modern cheeses carry the names of those ancient, individual gates…Casatica and Moringhello.  Quadrello is their spin on Taleggio, the classic cheese of their region.  It’s creamy, sometimes gooey and always rich and a bit pungent.  Gran Bu, the big buffalo, is just that, a physically big and big flavored firm cheese with sweet and nutty overtones.

One thousand water buffalo live on the farm.  Of those, 270 are being milked for cheesemaking.  Since water buffalo only give about two gallons of milk per day (cows can give up to four gallons), it takes many more water buffalo to have enough milk for a thriving cheese business.  Everything from breeding to calving happens on the Quattro Portoni farm, and most of the crops they feed the buffalo are grown there too, with the addition of some of the spent barley from the beer producer down the road. Theirs is a fairly self-sustainable operation.

The day of my visit, the pristinely clean and shiny cheesemaking room was busy with 2 cheesemakers and 4 helpers making Blu di Bufala, their cube-shaped blue with light veining, a rich, fatty mouthfeel and a minerally tang at the finish.  The buffalo had been milked at 4pm the previous day and 4am that morning.  The milk from both milkings was pasteurized and in the vat by 6am.  They work in three small open vats because buffalo milk is a bit more delicate and feeble than cows.  It’s easier on the milk to work it in small batches.  The milk for Blu di Bufala is coagulated and cut in the vat, then the curds are drained on worktables (the whey is used for fresh ricotta).  Once the curds have drained, they are cut into slabs about 1”x3”x8” and layered loosely into the forms.  This is a laborious task and all of the cheesemakers and helpers must work together quickly to get all of the curds into forms.  Once all of the forms are full, they will rest for a few hours, be flipped twice and left to sit at room temperature overnight while gas is produced inside the “wheel” making little spaces for the blue to grow.  The following day, they’ll be flipped again and brined.  About 120 wheels were made from this batch and they are now aging in the farm’s temperature and humidity controlled aging rooms.

 

This is old-school, hands-on cheesemaking.  The cheese plant down the road making 100 times more cheese has the same number of cheesemakers.  Machines cannot make cheeses like those produced by Quattro Portoni.