Mild-mannered cooking deity David Kinch is a modest, immodestly gifted chef who has brought fame to the South Bay.
(To be published by South Bay Accent magazine in December.)
In an era when chefs are often tattooed, self-promoting celebrities, with social media trumpeting their latest foul-mouthed exploits, the irrefutable king of the kitchen in the South Bay — and increasingly, beyond — is cerebral, low-key David Kinch, who’d rather be surfing than attending to a throng of groupies. He planted himself in the South Bay in the mid-’90s when, he admits, the region was a culinary backwater compared to the buzzy eating scene to the north. What drew him to this area was that “I found a place that I could afford,” he says, after coming up empty in pricey San Francisco, where he had excelled as the hired executive chef at various prestigious restaurants. Continue reading
“Crudo” is essentially an Italian way to present pristine raw fish — think sashimi but more interesting and varied — and this recipe is a winner.
Albacore Crudo with Strawberries and Nuoc Cham
This is a simple, absolutely wonderful recipe if you have super-fresh fish and want a quick way to prepare it. Besides being utterly delicious, it’s pretty and lends itself well to adaptations. For the uninitiated, “crudo” is the same concept as sashimi except the preparation is as varied as the cook’s imagination. While nominally an Italian dish, it’s prepared in all kinds of ways by fancy chefs and home cooks. In my dish, the richness of the fish is underscored by the light, slightly citrusy sauce with its Asian flavors, which I pump up a bit with the barest drizzle of lime oil. The sweet/tart pop of strawberries goes quite well with this. Even if using strawberries with fish sounds weird to you, try it anyway and you won’t be sorry. Or use pomegranate seeds. Continue reading
Posted in Appetizers/Starters, Berries, Fish/Seafood, Home Chefs, Ingredients, Main Course, Recipes, Tips/Techniques
Tagged albacore tuna, hamachi, lime oil, seafood crudo
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
Gravlax is a beloved staple in Scandinavia and in Jewish households that wouldn’t serve anything else but lox with their bagels and cream cheese. This simple fish curing technique is based on the idea of preserving salmon with a combination of salt and sugar. It’s super easy and only requires a little foresight because curing takes a couple of days. Continue reading
These two-bite-sized butterscotch shortbreads dipped in bittersweet chocolate are unbelievably tasty and make a standout addition to a cookie platter.
I whipped up a cookie assortment for holiday gifts this year and this particular not-super-sweet was the runaway favorite. Easy to make, this shortbread can be cut tiny or larger, as you please. Go with tiny because it’s definitely rich. Continue reading
This is a quick pasta dish that addresses the need to consume healthy greens — kale is often listed at the top — while not sacrificing taste. Slender-leaved black kale (cavalo nero) is great in this dish, but any kind of kale, green or red, or other hearty green will also be good. The dish can be made even tastier and prettier with the addition of tomatoes (sun-dried or cherry tomatoes) and other compatible ingredients. Make sure to add lots of grated parmesan, since there’s no “sauce” in this dish. Of the myriad kinds of pasta available, orechiette (“little ears”) is one of my favorites for its toothy texture and the way it holds ingredients. Continue reading