Recipes from Chef Jesse Cool

 Enjoy these refreshing, organic and nutritious recipes from Chef Jesse Cool. Click here to read our feature on Jesse Cool.

Baby Artichoke, Parsley and Celery Salad
Artichokes and celery are wonderful together. This light and refreshing salad is the perfect accompaniment to pasta dishes. Do not be afraid to cut away and discard the tough leafy parts of the artichoke. It is far worse trying to chew them.
  • 2½ pounds baby artichokes
  • â…“ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 1 cup thinly sliced celery
  • 1 medium red onion, or 5 green onions, thinly sliced
  • 1 cup whole Italian parsley leaves
  • ¼ cup capers
  • â…“ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • Dash of Tabasco
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  1. To clean the artichokes, first pull away and discard the outer leaves until all that remains is the very light, tender inside. Using a sharp knife, cut off and discard the tips of the remaining leaves and all the dark parts.
  2. Pour the lemon juice into a large bowl. Slice the trimmed artichokes thinly and add to the lemon juice, tossing well. Add the celery, onion, parsley, capers, oil, Tabasco, and salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Serve the salad at room temperature or transfer to a skillet and cook over medium heat for 2 minutes to warm slightly.
  4. Makes 4 servings.

Greek Salad Sandwiches
There is little that compares with just-harvested shelling beans. When cooked, mashed with a little feta cheese and olive oil, and then warmed inside a pita pocket, they are heavenly. These sandwiches, accompanied by the simple tomato-cucumber salad, make a healthy meal with a wonderful range of Mediterranean flavors.
  • 2 cups freshly shelled beans, such as fava, lima or cranberry
  • 1 garlic clove, minced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh oregano
  • 4½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, plus extra as needed
  • 6 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
  • Salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cucumber, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
  • ½ small red onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 large tomato, seeded and chopped
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 6 large whole-wheat pitas (8 inches in diameter)
  1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  2. Bring 1 cup of water to a boil in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add the beans. Simmer for 10 to 15 minutes, or until soft. Transfer the beans and cooking liquid to a medium bowl and mash with a potato masher or fork. Add the garlic, oregano, and about 3 tablespoons of the oil, or enough to give the beans the texture of a smooth pâté. Stir in the cheese. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside.
  3. In a medium serving bowl, combine the cucumber, onion, tomato, mint, parsley, lemon juice, and the remaining 1½ tablespoons of oil. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  4. Cut the pitas in half and open to form pockets. Spread an equal amount of the bean mixture in each pita pocket. Gently press together. Place on a baking sheet and cover with foil. Bake for 10 minutes, or until warmed. Remove from the oven and cut into halves or quarters.


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