Pistachio-cherry tart, mirin-sauced pork, granola bars


DEAR SOS: El Tovar restaurant at the Grand Canyon National Park Lodges serves a wonderful cherry tart with pistachio nuts. I would love the recipe and hope you can get it for me.


DEAR KAREN: What an interesting tart this is--especially its nutty crust topped with apricot jam and sun-dried cherries. Thank El Tovar executive chef Scott Kidd, who broke down the quantity-size recipe for you.

PISTACHIO-SUN-DRIED CHERRY TART 1/4 cup sugar 1/3 cup butter 1/4 cup shortening 1/2 cup almond paste 3 eggs 1/4 teaspoon vanilla 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon grated lemon zest 2 cups cake crumbs, pound or sponge cake Scant 1 cup ground pistachios 3/4 cup flour 1 (16-ounce) jar apricot jam 1 (8-ounce) jar sun-dried cherries


Cream sugar with butter, shortening and almond paste in mixing bowl. Beat in eggs, 1 at time. Stir in vanilla, salt and lemon zest.

Combine cake crumbs, ground pistachio nuts and flour in separate bowl. Mix into creamed mixture until smooth.

Grease 10-inch springform cake pan and line with parchment paper. Cover bottom of pan with layer of batter 1/2- to 3/4-inch thick. Using pastry bag with large plain tube, pipe ring of batter around entire edge. Spread apricot jam evenly over layer of cake batter. Sprinkle with sun-dried cherries. Pipe lattice to cover top of cake.

Bake at 375 degrees until browned, 25 to 35 minutes. Test cake for doneness at thickest point with cake tester. Cool before turning out of pan. Makes 8 to 10 servings.

Each of 8 servings contains about: 537 calories; 191 mg sodium; 170 mg cholesterol; 27 grams fat; 65 grams carbohydrates; 11 grams protein; 1.40 grams fiber.


DEAR SOS: Some time ago you printed a recipe for pork tenderloin with sesame seeds. I misplaced my recipe and would appreciate a copy of the original.


DEAR M.F.: The recipe was created by John Ash, original chef-owner of John Ash & Co. in Santa Rosa, Calif.

JOHN ASH’S PORK, KOBE-STYLE 2 (1-pound) tenderloins of pork, fat and silver skin removed 1/2 cup soy sauce 1 (3-inch) piece ginger root, mashed Grated zest and juice of 1 orange 2 cloves garlic, mashed 1/4 cup honey Orange segments or kumquats, optional 1/3 Japanese radish (daikon), shredded into threads 1/4 cup sesame seeds Mirin Sauce

Place pork fillets in shallow pan. Combine soy sauce, ginger, orange zest and juice and garlic in small bowl. Pour marinade over pork. Turn to coat well. Remove fillets from marinade. Roll in honey and sprinkle sesame seeds to cover surface of pork.

Place pork on rack over roasting pan and roast at 475 degrees until meat thermometer registers 160 degrees for medium rare or 170 degrees for well done, about 30 minutes. Slice and garnish with orange segments and daikon threads. Serve with Mirin Sauce. Makes 5 to 8 servings.

Each of 5 servings, without Mirin Sauce, contains about: 278 calories; 1685 mg sodium; 88 mg cholesterol; 8 grams fat; 20 grams carbohydrates; 34 grams protein; 0.42 grams fiber.

Mirin Sauce 1/2 cup mirin (sweet sake) 1/2 cup soy sauce 1/2 cup chicken broth 2 tablespoons sugar 1 (1-inch) piece ginger root, sliced (do not peel) 1 clove garlic, mashed 1 star anise pod Juice 1 large orange 1 tablespoon cornstarch Water

Combine mirin, soy sauce, chicken broth, sugar, ginger root, garlic, anise pod and orange juice in saucepan.

Mix cornstarch with enough water in bowl to make paste. Stir into mirin mixture.

Bring to simmer. Simmer over medium-low heat until sauce thickens and becomes shiny. Strain. Makes 1 1/4 cups.

Each tablespoon contains about: 17 calories; 422 mg sodium; 0 mg cholesterol; 0 grams fat; 3 grams carbohydrates; 1 gram protein; 0.01 grams fiber.


DEAR SOS: I am desperately searching for a granola bar recipe. Can you help?


DEAR JAN: Here’s one to try.

GRANOLA BARS 6 tablespoons butter or margarine 1/2 cup brown sugar, packed 1/4 cup honey 1 egg 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 cup flour 1/2 teaspoon baking powder 1/2 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1 1/2 cups bite-size crispy bran squares, crushed to 1/2 cup 1/2 cup raisins 1/2 cup flaked coconut 1/4 cup plus 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds 2 tablespoons sesame seeds

Cream together butter and brown sugar in mixing bowl. Beat in honey, egg and vanilla.

Stir together flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda and crushed bran squares in separate bowl. Add to creamed mixture.

Stir in raisins, coconut and 1/4 cup sunflower nuts. Spread evenly in greased 13x9-inch baking pan. Sprinkle sesame seeds and remaining 3 tablespoons sunflower seeds evenly over top.

Bake at 350 degrees until tester inserted in center comes out clean and top is lightly browned, 15 to 20 minutes. Cool. Cut into bars. Makes 24 bars.

Each bar contains about: 125 calories; 157 mg sodium; 17 mg cholesterol; 5 grams fat; 19 grams carbohydrates; 2 grams protein; 0.53 grams fiber.