Cauliflower is definitely having a moment, being discovered in recent years by chefs and home cooks who resonate with its mild, goes-with-anything flavor and appealing texture. I love, love this veggie and cook it frequently, including making up recipes using a relatively new offering from Trader Joe’s called “riced” cauliflower that looks a lot like the grain and can be whipped up as a non-starchy substitute. TJ’s also sells riced broccoli but I prefer the white stuff.
Thus I was primed to like a new recipe from UK-based Israeli chef Yotam Ottolenghi that appeared in Bon Appetit that is the best thing I’ve tried from this popular cookbook author. The dish consists of “steaks” of thick-cut cauliflower with a puree of the veggie underneath, punched up with a “salsa” of walnuts, capers, parsley and currants that takes the delightful dish into new territories of delicious. Continue reading
I fondly recall an enchilada dish my mom made that was notable for the colorful inclusion of black olives (the tasteless canned, sliced kind — she was busy) and sliced scallions. Compared to the gloppy enchiladas in Mexican restaurants swimming in mud-colored sauce, hers was a pretty change of pace even though it probably relied on canned tomatoes and other convenient ingredients popular with her generation. So I set out to do a version with better ingredients. Given that this is completely made up, I apologize for not having succinct amounts and detailed instructions. But enchiladas aren’t very hard to make so this should be easily put together. Note my alternative approach for the usual frying of tortillas called for in making enchiladas. Continue reading
This simple entree — pan-roasted chicken breast with tarragon creme fraiche sauce — is impeccably French and ever so delicious. I saw it in a food magazine and tweaked it a bit. The most work involved is prepping and cooking the vegetables, so if you’re in a hurry, make just the chicken and sauce and serve with rice. Continue reading
It might sound weird, but this combination produces a subtle, exciting sauce that’s particularly great with lamb.
During a recent trip to Seattle, I dined at Mistral Kitchen and had an absolutely delicious entree of lamb loin medallions with black olive caramel. This led to the inevitable task of duplicating the sauce at home, where I discovered just how easy it is to make. Some have said it’s a Catalan idea, but I’ve seen it accompanying all types of proteins and even dotting some dessert plates. The flavors are deep and interesting; earthy, slightly bitter from the olives and not particularly sweet, actually, although what sweetness is there helps to round out the flavors and add complexity. Continue reading
Herbs make a mouthful of taste when used as a salad and work as a great counterpoint to many savory dishes.
Many sauces include herbs as a key flavor agent — hollandaise and pesto are just the beginning — so why not lighten things up and use just the herbs? It’s less crazy than it seems once you’ve tried it. Plus, a little pile of lightly dressed greenery is a lovely addition to a plate. Continue reading
Given the amount of salmon consumed in my health-conscious household (particularly by my spouse), I’ve tried or invented countless sauces, glazes and marinades while experimenting with cooking methods like steaming, pan roasting, sauteeing, grilling, smoking, cooking in our beloved combi-steam oven and serving raw in a crudo treatment. Several of these recipes are posted on this blog. (Look under fish/seafood.) While all of them have been enjoyable, there’s one recipe that soars above the rest in terms of ease, fewer calories and — particularly — unbeatable flavor: a miso marinade/glaze/sauce that marries with salmon as happily as Barak does with Michelle. Continue reading
It’s no contest when it comes to the deliciousness of duck vs. chicken.
One of my go-to pasta dishes is chicken breast with mushrooms and tomatoes on a toothy pasta. Sometimes, I swap chicken demi-glace for a tomato-based sauce, to produce a dish that’s more refined and quite tasty. Yet it never occurred to me until recently to use duck breast instead of ubiquitous chicken breast — a switch that turns this and any chicken-based pasta sauce into something extraordinary. Continue reading