Baking is science and I don't like formulas, but cooking is art and anything goes...and the simpler the better. It's all about less time at the stove and more time at the table. With a forty year passion for food I'm excited to share what I do in the kitchen nearly every day.

Monday, June 29, 2015

Barbequed Pork Ribs

July 4th is all about America and when it comes to food America is all about barbeque. And these pork ribs can be prepared up to two days ahead of time so even after some exuberant celebrating, with a little bit of planning, they’re guaranteed to come out tender and tasty.

After years of experimentation I’ve found the easiest way to ensure tender barbequed pork ribs every time is to bake them for two hours before finishing them off on the grill. Preheat your oven to 350, combine your favorite combination of sugar, salt, and spices, rub both sides of your racks generously, then bake in a covered roasting pan for two hours. And whether you’re grilling immediately or in a couple of days simply baste the ribs with barbeque sauce for 10 to 15 minutes while turning frequently over high heat.

Happy 4th!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

Watercress Salad with Soy Vinaigrette

It’s the little things that can make your day, like finding a new vegetable on the shelf at the market. Waitsfield’s hydroponically grown Green Mountain Harvest’s watercress is here. If you’re thinking salad it combines perfectly with fennel, pistachios, avocado, endive, cucumber, jicama, or apple, and if you’re feeling like something Asian give it a try with oranges and a soy vinaigrette.

In a mason jar combine a quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil, a minced garlic clove, a tablespoon of rice wine vinegar, a teaspoon each of soy sauce and sesame oil then shake vigorously. Next, peel an orange, remove the pith, and cut the segments into small pieces before combining with the watercress, orange pieces, dressing, and some sesame seeds if you have them.

 Happy Summer!

Thursday, June 18, 2015

Shrimp and Prosciutto

The combination of shrimp and prosciutto makes this a very tasty main course or appetizer…and surprisingly quick and easy to prepare. While your sauté pan is heating peal your shrimp, mince your garlic, slice a couple of mushrooms, coarsely chop some arugula, and dice a couple of extra thick slices of prosciutto.

When you’re ready to go add a bit of extra virgin olive oil to your pan and sauté the mushrooms until they start to brown. Next, add the shrimp along with some red chili flakes. After a few minutes flip the shrimp and add the garlic, arugula, and prosciutto. When the shrimp are cooked through salt to taste and serve immediately.

It will taste better if you eat it outside with a glass of white wine.

Thursday, June 11, 2015

Belgian Endive, Cucumber, and Olive Salad

If you don’t eat Belgian endive regularly please keep reading because you should; They’re incredibly satisfying, they’re healthy, they last longer and are easier to prep than most lettuces, and they’re available year around. With a little bit of extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice, and kosher salt they taste as good on their own as they do with cucumbers, olives, potatoes, mint, watercress, apples, radicchio, arugula, oranges, tomatoes, avocado or bacon…just to name a few.

If you already eat endive you know what I’m talking about, and if you don’t, then it’s a great time to start. Figure about one endive per person, slice them to about a half an inch from the base, and toss with your ingredients and dressing of choice.

Friday, June 5, 2015

Wilted Spinach and Pancetta Salad

There’s something incredibly satisfying about a warm salad dressing tossed with fresh greens, especially this time of year with the abundance of local spinach. And any dish that starts with pancetta can’t be all that bad.

Dice two quarter inch slices of pancetta then sauté in a bit of olive oil until it starts to brown. Add a finely chopped shallot, some sliced mushrooms, and a minced garlic clove…corn or parboiled diced potatoes are an option if you’re thinking of something more substantial. Continue to sauté for another five minutes or so before turning down the heat.

Combine a quarter cup of olive oil with a third as much balsamic vinegar then stir into the pan. When you’re ready to serve toss with your fresh spinach and add kosher salt and pepper to taste.