Pear Sauce

This lovely sauce is amazing on top of freshly-baked scones, or enjoyed with your morning oatmeal.

Ingredients:
4-6 D’Anjou pears, peeled, cored and cut into 1-inch pieces
2 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground ginger
¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

Method:
1. Combine pears, water, lemon juice, cinnamon, ginger and vanilla in a large saucepan. Bring to a boil over high heat. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until pears have softened, about 20 minutes.

2. Use an immersion blender to process the pear sauce until smooth. If you prefer a chunkier sauce, mash with a potato masher. (You can also transfer the cooked pear mixture to a food processor or blender to process, just make sure the pear sauce has cooled down first.)

3. Once the pear sauce has cooled down, pour into glass or plastic containers. Cover and store in the refrigerator, sauce will keep in the fridge for one week.

Arugula Pesto

Stash this bright, zippy pesto in your freezer to add to the likes of pastas, soups or even grilled vegetables.

Ingredients:
4 cups arugula
1-2 cloves garlic
2 tablespoons toasted pine nuts
1 cup olive oil
½ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. In a food processor, combine the pine nuts, garlic, arugula, Parmesan, and about 1 teaspoon salt and pulse to blend. With the machine running, pour in the olive oil through the food tube in a slow, steady stream and process until smooth, stopping to scrape down the sides of the bowl as needed. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed.

Lemon Crème Fraîche

This versatile concoction can be used as a salad vinaigrette atop spring greens, or spread over Jewish Rye toasts with this week’s smoked salmon.

Ingredients:
1 cup crème fraîche
¼ cup lemon juice, plus the zest of 1 lemon
2 tablespoons freshly-chopped herbs, such as parsley and mint

Method:
1. Whisk together the crème fraîche, lemon juice and fresh herbs. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Pistou

This incredibly-flavorful sauce is the perfect accent to this week’s rustic stew.

Ingredients:
1 cup stemmed basil leaves
¼ cup chopped tomatoes
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon pine nuts, lightly toasted
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. In a food processor, combine the basil, tomatoes, garlic and pine nuts. Pulse to chop, scraping down the sides of the bowl occasionally.

2. Once all the ingredients are evenly chopped, run the processor and drizzle in the olive oil in a slow stream. Once the oil is incorporated, stop the processor and season the pistou with salt and pepper to taste. The pistou will keep in the fridge in an airtight container for several days.

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