Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

Category Archives: asparagus

This frittata works for breakfast with fruit and toast. It is also good for lunch with a side salad or for dinner with vegetable side dishes and baked ham. The frittata also keeps several days in the refrigerator. Reheat for 2-3 minutes in the microwave.

6 servings

Ingredients

1 tablespoon olive oil
6 spears of fresh asparagus, cooked and diced
½ cup jarred roasted red bell pepper, chopped
½ cup cherry tomatoes halved
½ teaspoon minced garlic
½ teaspoon dried oregano
½ teaspoon dried basil
Salt to taste
8 large eggs
¼ cup whole milk
½ cup crumbled feta cheese
¼ cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions

Preheat the broiler.

Heat olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium heat; cook and stir asparagus and roasted red bell pepper until the vegetables are hot.. Stir in cherry tomatoes, garlic, oregano, basil, and salt, and continue cooking until the tomatoes are soft for another 3 minutes. Sprinkle mixture lightly t with salt.

Whisk eggs and milk in a bowl and pour into the skillet to cover the vegetables with egg mixture. Pull up an edge of the frittata with a spatula and tilt the pan to allow the unset egg to run underneath and continue around the pan, lifting the frittata edge, tilting the an, until all the egg mixture is set.

Sprinkle with feta and Cheddar cheese. Place the pan under the broiler. Cook 1 to 2 minutes until the cheese melts. Cut in slices to serve.


Springtime Vegetables and Eggs

6 servings

Cut all the vegetables into ½ inch cubes

ingredients

¼ cup olive oil
1 large garlic clove, chopped
1 medium baking potato, peeled and diced
1 cup diced red onion
1 large yellow bell pepper, seeded and diced
½ teaspoon salt1/4 teaspoon black pepper
1/2 teaspoon dried basil1/4 teaspoon drie4d oregano
1 medium zucchini, diced
2 plum tomatoes, seeded and diced
1 cup leftover cooked asparagus {see recipe}
8 eggs, beaten
2 cups shredded mozzarella cheese

Directions

Heat the broiler and move the rack down to the center of the oven.
In a large 12-inch ovenproof skillet or omelet pan, heat the oil.
Add the garlic. potato. Bell pepper android onion. Cook over medium heat until soft, 10=12 minutes. Add the seasonings, zucchini, and asparagus. Cook until heated through.
Pour the beaten eggs over the vegetable and cook over medium until the eggs are set on the bottom. Distribute the cheese evenly over the egg mixture.
Place the pan on the oven shelf under the broiler and cook until the cheese is completly7 melted and the eggs are set on top.
Let the frittata rest for 10 minutes before cutting into serving pieces.


Filet Mignon In Mushroom Sauce

2 servings

Ingredients

4 tablespoons butter, divided
1 teaspoon olive oil
2 beef tenderloin steaks 5-6 ounces each)
Fresh thyme sprig
1 clove garlic, cut in half
1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms or a 4oz can, drained
1 tablespoon chopped shallot
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
Dash pepper
2/3 cup beef broth
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

Directions

With a meat mallet flatten the steaks between sheets of plastic wrap to ½ inch thickness.
In a medium skillet, heat 2 tablespoons butter and oil over medium-high heat; Add the thyme, garlic, and steaks. cook steaks to medium-rare, a thermometer should read 125°F, 4 minutes per side. Remove the steaks from the pan to a plate and cover with foil. Discard the garlic and thyme.


In the same pan, heat drippings and remaining butter over medium-high heat; saute mushrooms and shallot until tender. Stir in flour, salt, and pepper until blended; gradually stir in broth and Worcestershire sauce. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly; cook and stir until thickened, 1-2 minutes. Return steaks to the pan and simmer in the sauce for 2 minutes, turning them over after 1 minute.

Oven Roasted Asparagus

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 bunches asparagus
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 garlic clove. chopped
½ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1/3 cup Italian seasoned Panko breadcrumbs

Directions

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Break off the woody bottoms of the asparagus and wash in cold water.
Arrange trimmed asparagus in a 13 X 9-inch dish. Drizzle with the oil and lemon juice. Sprinkle with garlic, salt, pepper, and lemon zest.
Top with breadcrumbs and bake for 20 minutes.

Twice-Baked Potatoes

2 servings

Ingredients

1 large russet potato, 12 ounces
Extra-virgin olive oil, for brushing
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons butter, at room temperature
1 slice bacon cooked and crumbled
2 tablespoons chopped chives

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Prick the potatoes all over with a fork. Brush lightly with the oil. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast on a sheet tray covered with foil until tender, 50 minutes to 1 hour.

While still hot, slice a thin layer off the top of the potato and scoop the potato flesh into a medium bowl, leaving a 1/4-inch shell all around on the potato shell. Season the insides of the potato shell lightly with salt and pepper.

To the bowl with the potato flesh, add the sour cream and butter. Use an electric hand mixer or potato masher and mix until almost smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Mound into the potato shell and bake for 15-20 minutes until hot. Sprinkle with bacon and chives. Cut in half and serve.


The calendar may say Fall but where I live it is still hot. So ribs are still on the menu.

Easy Ribs

Ingredients

2 small slabs pork baby back ribs, each cut in half
BBQ sauce, optional

Rub
1 tablespoon ground black pepper
2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
2 tablespoons chili powder
2 tablespoons ground cumin
2 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 tablespoon dried oregano
4 tablespoons paprika
2 tablespoons table salt
1 tablespoon ground white pepper
3 tablespoons celery salt
3 tablespoons garlic powder

Directions

Mix all the rub ingredients together in a medium bowl. Rub each side of the 4 pieces of ribs with 2-3 tablespoons of the rub mix. (Save any remaining rub for another time,) Wrap them in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.


Line a baking dish large enough to fit the ribs with foil and place the ribs meaty side up in the dish.
Bake at 250 degrees F for 3 hours. For extra crispiness, place the ribs on a hot grill or under the broiler for 5 minutes on each side. Serve with BBQ sauce if desired.

Simple Potato Salad

Ingredients

2 lbs whole medium red-skinned potatoes
1 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons pickle juice
1/4 cup minced bread and butter pickles or pickle relish.
1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion or scallions
2 celery stalks, finely chopped
1/2 cup olive oil mayonnaise
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Salt and black pepper to taste
Chopped parsley for garnish

Directions

Place the potatoes in a large pot with a lid. Cover the potatoes with cold water and add 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and cook the potatoes with the lid ajar until tender, about 15 minutes.

Drain the potatoes and cool. When cool enough to handle, peel the potatoes. Slice the potatoes into a storage bowl.

Add the pickle juice and let sit at room temperature for an hour or so.

Add the remaining ingredients, mix well, and taste to see if the salad needs salt. Add black pepper to taste. Cover the bowl and chill in the refrigerator until serving time. Sprinkle with chopped parsley and serve.

Roasted Asparagus Salad with Lemon Vinaigrette

Ingredients

2 bunches thin asparagus, washed and ends trimmed
Olive oil
Salt and pepper

Vinaigrette
1 medium shallot, minced (about 11/2 tablespoons)
2 lemons, juiced
1 teaspoon honey
2 tablespoons smooth Dijon mustard
4 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

Option one – Roast asparagus in the air-fryer at 400 degrees F for 7-8 minutes.

Option two- Adjust oven rack to uppermost position and heat broiler.

Toss asparagus with olive oil and salt and pepper, then lay spears in a single layer on a heavy rimmed baking sheet. Broil about 4 inches from heating element, shaking the pan halfway through to turn spears, until asparagus is tender and lightly browned 8 to 10 minutes.

Cool asparagus 5 minutes and arrange on serving dish.

Whisk shallot, lemon juice, honey, mustard, and olive oil in a small bowl; season to taste with salt and pepper. Drizzle over asparagus and serve immediately.


Surf and Turf

Steak Ingredients

Two 6 oz. fillet mignon steaks, flatten lightly until an even thickness
2 tablespoons steak seasoning
2 tablespoons garlic butter, recipe below
2 tablespoons olive oil

Lobster Tail Ingredients

Two 4 oz. lobster tails
4 tablespoons garlic butter, recipe below
1/2 lemon cut into wedges
Salt & pepper to taste
Chopped parsley for garnish

Air Fryer Directions ( You can use the same directions to cook the steak and lobster in the broiler.)

Sprinkle the steak seasoning on each side of the steaks. Place in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours or overnight.
Brush each side of both steaks with 1 tablespoon of olive oil each.
Butterfly lobster tails by using kitchen scissors to cut lengthwise through the center of the shells.
Carefully spread the shell open where you cut. Place your fingers under the meat in the shell and firmly, but gently, pull it out in one piece.
Close the shell so that the lobster meat rests on top of the shell.
Melt 4 tablespoons garlic butter sauce over medium heat in a small saucepan.
Transfer 2 tablespoons of the garlic butter sauce to a small bowl and brush the lobster tail meat with it. Season the lobster tails with salt and pepper to your preference.

Place the filets and lobster tails with the cut lobster meat facing up in the air fryer and cook for approximately 4 minutes at 390°F. Turn the fillets and cook them and the lobster for 4 minutes more.

Remove from the air fryer and top each filet with 1 tablespoon garlic butter.
Let the steak rest for 5 minutes before cutting.

Squeeze 1/2 a lemon over the lobster tail. Serve the remaining garlic butter sauce in a small dish to use as a dipping sauce for the lobster and steak.
NOTE
If using thick steaks: If your steaks are on the thicker side, you may need to cook them for 1 minute longer on each side.

Garlic Butter

Ingredients

1 stick-8oz- butter, salted (at room temperature) diced
2 cloves garlic finely chopped or pressed
1/4 cup parsley finely chopped

Directions

In a medium microwave-safe bowl, mix all ingredients until well-combined.
Heat in the microwave on high until melted.

Smashed Potatoes

Ingredients

2 medium red potatoes boiled or baked until tender.
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions

Heat the oil in a small skillet. Place the potatoes in the skillet and flatten them with a potato masher. Cook over medium heat until brown. Turn over and brown the second side. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and serve.

Asparagus Parmesan

Ingredients

1 bunch asparagus, woody ends removed and cut in half
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

Directions

Heat the oil in a large skillet. Stir fry the asparagus until tender about 4-5 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Remove to a serving plate, sprinkle the asparagus with Parmesan cheese, and serve.


Pork Fried Rice

Ingredients

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 egg, beaten
1 onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic, grated
2 cups diced raw or cooked vegetables (see suggestions, below)
2 cups diced cooked pork (I used leftover spare ribs)
3 cups cold leftover cooked rice
2 tablespoons soy sauce
1/4 cup oyster sauce
1 teaspoon sesame oil
4 green onions, sliced
Fried rice veggie ideas: celery, bell peppers, mushrooms, carrots, bean sprouts, broccoli, zucchini, green beans, peas, snow peas, cabbage.

Directions
In a wok or a large skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the oil over high heat. Add egg and cook, stirring, until the egg is scrambled. Remove the scrambled egg to a plate.
Pour the remaining oil into the wok. When it is very hot, add chopped onion and garlic and cook, stirring, for 2 or 3 minutes or just until onion is softened. Add raw vegetables first, followed by any cooked vegetables (the first ones into the pan should be the veggies that take the longest to cook, like raw carrots). Already-cooked veggies should be added last. Now add cooked meat, stirring to mix well and heat through.

Add rice, stirring constantly to break up the lumps of rice, mix it with the other ingredients and heat thoroughly. Add soy sauce, oyster sauce, and sesame oil and cook, stirring and tossing, for 2 or 3 minutes. Stir in the scrambled egg and green onions and stir-fry for one more minute. Remove from heat and serve immediately.

Fish Baked In Teriyaki Sauce

Ingredients

2 tablespoons teriyaki sauce
1/2 teaspoon minced garlic
2 cod fillets, each 6 ounces
2 teaspoons sesame seeds

Directions

In a small bowl, whisk together the teriyaki sauce and garlic.
Lightly spray a small baking pan with cooking spray. Place the fillets in the pan. Pour the teriyaki marinade over both sides of the fillets. Cover and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes to marinate the fish.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.. Sprinkle the fish with the sesame seeds.
Bake until the fish is opaque throughout when tested with a tip of a knife, about 15 to 20 minutes. Serve with the fried rice.

Asparagus in Ginger Garlic Sauce

Sauce
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon Shaoxing wine
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 teaspoon grated fresh ginger
1/2 teaspoon grated garlic
1 pinch red pepper flakes

Stirfry
1 bunch medium-size asparagus spears, trimmed
1 tablespoon peanut oil

Directions

Combine sauce ingredients and set aside.
Cut the asparagus into two-inch pieces, on the diagonal.
Heat a large skillet over medium-high until hot, 3–5 minutes, and add oil and asparagus; season lightly with salt. Cook, tossing occasionally until asparagus is just beginning to brown around the edges, about 2 minutes. Add sauce and cook, tossing constantly, until asparagus is still crispy yet cooked through and coated in the sauce, about 30 seconds longer.

 


Oven-Baked Ribs

Ingredients

Two racks of St. Louis cut pork ribs

BBQ Rub
2 tablespoons sweet paprika
2 tablespoons garlic powder
2 tablespoons packed brown sugar
4 teaspoons ground cumin
2 teaspoons onion powder
2 teaspoons chili powder
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Plum BBQ Sauce
1/2 cup Asian plum sauce
2 tablespoons honey
2 tablespoons Korean gochujang sauce

Directions

Place ribs in a 13×9-inch baking pan. In a small bowl, combine paprika, garlic powder, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, cumin, onion powder, chili powder, 2 teaspoons salt, and cayenne pepper. Sprinkle ribs evenly on both sides with 4 tablespoons of the spice mixture and cover the pans tightly with foil. Refrigerate for several hours.

Preheat oven to 250°F. Place in the oven and bake 2 1/2 hours.

Make the Plum BBQ Sauce.combine the ingredients until smooth and set aside

Remove the ribs from the oven. Discard liquid from the baking pans.

Turn the oven to 400 degrees F. Brush the ribs with the Plum BBQ Sauce. Return the baking pan to the oven, uncovered, and cook for 30 minutes. If making the stuffed tomato recipe, place the tomatoes into the oven with the ribs.

Cut into 2-rib portions and serve.

Stuffed Tomatoes

Ingredients

2 vine-ripened tomatoes
Salt
1/4 cup Italian flavored panko bread crumbs
2 tablespoons finely chopped onion
2 tablespoons finely chopped celery
Freshly ground black pepper yo taste
2 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon olive oil

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut a thin slice off the top of the tomatoes and scoop out pulp and seeds. Place the pulp in a colander and ket drain.

 

Salt the insides of the tomatoes and rest upside down on a paper towel for 30 minutes. In a mixing bowl, mix together panko bread crumbs, onion celery, pepper, Parmesan and oil. Stuff tomatoes with the filling and place in a small baking dish.


Bake until tomatoes are cooked through and tops are golden brown, about 30 minutes.

Asparagus With Burrata Cheese

Ingredients

Kosher salt
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
2 ounces burrata cheese
Italian salad dressing
Coarse ground black pepper

Directions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Sprinkle generously with salt. Add the asparagus to the water and, depending on the size of the asparagus, blanch for 3 to 5 minutes. It should still have some bite left to it. Place the drained asparagus on a serving plate and drizzle with some salad dressing. Sprinkle with black pepper and pieces of burrata cheese and serve.


If it is not grilling season where you live the trout and asparagus can be roasted in a 400 degree F oven for 20-25 minutes. The tomatoes for 5 minutes.

Grilled Rainbow Trout

For 2 servings

Ingredients

1 whole dressed rainbow, head removed; tail on
1 lemon sliced into 1/4-inch-thick rounds
1 large garlic clove, sliced
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
4 whole dressed rainbow trout (about 10 ounces each), head removed; tail on
3 celery tops
1 spring onion cut into pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Nonstick cooking spray

Directions

Sprinkle the inside of the fish with salt and pepper. Drizzle with olive oil and place the garlic slices on one side of the fish. Stuff the inside of the fish with lemon slices, pieces of spring onion and the celery tops. Fold the other half of the fish over the filling and secure with metal skewers.


Preheat a grill to medium-high.

Coat outside of the fish with cooking spray. Place fish over direct heat; grill 4 minutes. Turn over; move to indirect heat. Grill 12 minutes or until done.

Grilled Asparagus Wrapped In Prosciutto

Ingredients

1 bunch thin asparagus spears, woody ends removed
6 very thin slices Prosciutto de Palma
Olive oil
Coarse black pepper

Directions

Bundle asparagus together in small batches ( I made 6 bundles with 6 asparagus in each) and wrap one slice of prosciutto around each bundle.
Place the bundles in an oiled piece of foil. Sprinkle the bundles with olive oil and black pepper.
Slide the asparagus onto the grill after you move the trout to the indirect side of the grill. They will be done when the fish is cooked.

Grilled Cherry Tomatoes

Place 6-8 cherry tomatoes on a skewer. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on the grill for 2 minutes. Remove to a platter with the trout and asparagus.


Recently my PBS station aired a special about how Julia Child influenced many of today’s well-known chefs as well as the viewers who watched the shows. This special made me realize that I, too, had learned many cooking skills from her shows. Growing up I learned some basic Italian recipes from my mother and father (Italian men like to cook.) but not the kind of food America was eating when I got married. My mother was not an enthusiastic cook and tended to make the same things every week. My father would make things she did not like, such as rabbit or crab in spaghetti sauce. So as a young wife I liked cooking but needed to know more. It was about that time that Julia’s shows came onto PBS. There were no other cooking shows on TV at that time. While her recipes highlighted French cooking, she did focus on skills. I learned how to cook a whole chicken, prepare fish and make good sauces from watching her shows. If you have never made her chicken recipe, give it a try. It comes out moist and full of flavor.

Poulet Poele a l’Estragon

(Casserole- Roasted Chicken)

Ingredients

Seasoning Chicken
1 (3-4 pound) roasting chicken
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, divided
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
1 shallot, halved

Browning Chicken
2 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon olive oil

For Vegetables
2-3 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup sliced onions
1/4 cup sliced carrots
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon

Sauce
2 cups brown chicken stock, or 1 cup canned beef broth and 1 cup canned chicken broth
1 tablespoon corn starch
2 tablespoons port wine
2 tablespoons minced fresh tarragon (or 1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon)
1 tablespoon softened butter

Directions

Preheat oven to 325° F. Thoroughly dry the chicken. Season the cavity of the chicken with the salt, tarragon and 1 tablespoon of butter. Insert the shallot and rub the remaining tablespoon of butter on the outside of the chicken. Tie legs together with kitchen string.

Heat a heavy, fireproof casserole dish or pot over medium-high heat. Add butter and oil. When the butter foam has begun to subside, lay in the chicken, breast down. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, regulating the heat so butter is always very hot but not burning. Carefully turn the chicken to another side, using 2 wooden spoons. Be sure not to break the chicken skin. Continue browning and turning the chicken until it is a nice golden color almost all over, particularly on the breast and legs. This will take 10 to 15 minutes. Add more oil if necessary to keep the bottom of the casserole filmed.

Remove chicken from the pan and set aside. Pour out the browning fat if it has burned, and add fresh butter. Cook the carrots and onions slowly in the casserole for 5 minutes without browning. Add the salt and tarragon.

Salt the chicken and place it breast up over the vegetables. Baste with the butter in the casserole. Lay a piece of aluminum foil over the chicken, cover the pan, and reheat it on top of the stove until you hear the chicken sizzling. Then place the casserole/pan in the preheated oven.

Roast for 1 hour and 15 minutes. Baste once or twice with the butter and juices in the casserole. The chicken is done when the drumsticks move in their sockets, and when juices run clear.

Remove the chicken to a serving platter and discard trussing strings. Combine the cornstarch with ¼ cup of the chicken broth and the port wine and set aside. Add the remaining broth to the casserole and simmer for 2 minutes, scraping up coagulated roasting juices. Blend in the cornstarch mixture, simmer a minute, then raise heat and boil rapidly until the sauce is lightly thickened. Stir in tarragon and butter.

Serve chicken with sauce. Good sides are peas, potatoes, asparagus, carrots or broiled tomatoes.

The recipe above is from Julia Child’s, Mastering The Art of French Cooking, Volume One, Pages 249-251.

You can watch the original episodes on Amazon Prime Video or your local PBS online site.

Amazon Season 1 Episode 3 Chicken Video is the recipe for Casserole-Roasted Chicken with Bacon, Onions, and Potatoes -a variation of the above recipe called Poulet en Cocotte Bonne Femme.

https://www.amazon.com/French-Chef-Julia-Child/dp/B0062246R8

 


Easy Chicken Cordon Bleu

4 servings

Ingredients

4 (6-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breast halves (about 1 1/2 pounds)
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 ounces sliced Swiss cheese (4 slices)
4 ounces thinly sliced Black Forest ham
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 large eggs
2 tablespoons milk
1 cup fine unseasoned dried panko crumbs
1 tablespoon dried parsley flakes, plus chopped fresh parsley for garnish
3 tablespoons olive oil

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Cut each piece of chicken in half horizontally and place each piece between 2 sheets of plastic wrap. Using the smooth side of a meat mallet, pound out to a 1/4-inch thickness.

Place the 8 chicken pieces on a cutting board and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Divide the cheese evenly between 4 pieces of chicken. Arrange ham slices evenly over the cheese; top with remaining 4 pieces of chicken. Tuck in any cheese or ham that extends over the edges. Secure chicken pieces together using toothpicks along the edges to form a “sandwich.”

Place flour in a shallow dish. In another shallow dish, mix together eggs and milk using a fork. Place panko crumbs and parsley in a third shallow dish. Dip a chicken “sandwich” in flour, shaking off any excess. Dip chicken in egg mixture, followed by the panko crumbs; transfer to a plate. Repeat process with remaining chicken “sandwiches.”

Heat olive oil in a large ovenproof skillet over medium-high heat. Place chicken “sandwiches” in skillet and cook, until browned on one side, about 3 minutes. Turn chicken and cook 2 minutes more.

Transfer the skillet to the oven. Cook until cheese is melted and bubbly and chicken is cooked through about 5 minutes. Remove toothpicks and garnish with chopped fresh parsley. Serve immediately.


Roasted Asparagus And Tomatoes

Ingredients

1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
1 cup grape tomatoes, halved
1/4 teaspoon granulated garlic
Juice of half a lemon
1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon

Directions

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Combine all the ingredients in a glass baking dish and roast the vegetables until tender about 15 minutes.



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