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, September 28, 2015

Kale Fennel and Honey Crisp Salad

It’s apple season and that means Honey Crisps, but they’re only around for a few short weeks so don’t wait to make this salad. In a mason jar combine a quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil, the juice from half an orange, orange zest, a tablespoon of maple syrup, a tablespoon of Dijon mustard, a tablespoon of minced shallots, a splash of white wine vinegar, and kosher salt and pepper to taste. Shake vigorously.

For the salad toss some chopped kale with a thinly sliced Honey Crisp and half a large fennel bulb...toasted pumpkin seeds or cashew pieces are nice for crunch if you happen to have them. Then simply toss with crumbled feta and the dressing before serving. Happy Fall!

Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Roast Lamb with Yogurt Sauce

The key to this roast is to thoroughly smear your boneless leg of lamb with a garlic salt paste a day ahead of time. Prepare the paste by putting a whole head of peeled garlic and two tablespoons of kosher salt in the food processor or mince the garlic by hand then combine with the salt. After rubbing it into the lamb wrap tightly with saran and refrigerate overnight.

The yogurt sauce is also best made ahead of time by stirring together a cup of plain yogurt, two tablespoons of tahini, the juice from half a lemon and salt and pepper to taste. The following day simply roast the lamb for about an hour at 350 for an internal temperature of 120 and serve with the yogurt sauce.

This is a great dish for football Sunday as you can do most of the work on Saturday. Are you ready for some football…

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Smashed Cucumbers

The cucumbers just keep coming…and I don’t mind a bit. Try them with a bit of spice in this recipe I adapted from Superiority Burger in NYC, and the smashing technique lends itself to lots of other dishes as well. Slice an English, Persian or small pickling cucumber in half the long way then cut into four inch lengths. Place a segment seed side down on your cutting board, cover with the side of a large knife, and using your other hand gently smash so the skin splits and the seeds separate. Repeat on the remaining segments then slice into bite size pieces removing as many of the seeds as possible.

For the dressing dissolve two teaspoons of sugar and one of salt in a couple of tablespoons of rice wine vinegar. Then stir in two teaspoons each of sesame oil and soy sauce, a tablespoon of oil, two minced garlic cloves, and red chili flakes to taste. Toss together with the cucumbers and garnish with cilantro and or sesame seeds.

Thursday, September 3, 2015

Colatura di Alici

For all of you condiment junkies out there this Italian fish sauce is a must have, especially when combined with some local garlic. Colatura di Alici goes back to Roman times and is still made the same way in a small village on the Amalfi coast from anchovies and salt. It’s readily available online but for this recipe you can substitute a can of anchovies and a teaspoon of coarse salt.

On a washable cutting board mince together three large garlic cloves, a generous handful of parsley, a half teaspoon of chili flakes, and if you’re not using the sauce, the anchovies and salt . If you are using the sauce combine four tablespoons with eight of extra virgin olive oil then stir in the garlic mixture. This can be done several hours ahead of time.

When you’re ready to go cook and drain a pound of pasta, toss with the sauce, and top with some parmesan. And if you like it on pasta definitely try smearing it on a thick steak…incredible!