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.

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Roast Mushrooms

It’s hard not to notice the expanded mushroom selection at the market these days, most of which I’ve only ever seen before on my plate in New York’s Chinatown. As exotic as they may look they couldn’t be easier to prepare, and they make a tasty side dish or appetizer.

The Hen of the Woods, Bunashimeji, and Bunapi mushrooms are small delicate varieties that grow in a dense clump. After removing from the packaging gently break them apart with your hands, toss with a little bit of olive oil and kosher salt, and spread them in a single layer in a large roasting pan or baking sheet.

Put in a 400 degree oven for twenty minutes then stir in some chopped garlic and parsley and return to the oven for another ten minutes. At one of my favorite local restaurants they take it another step and drizzle some aioli over the top before serving, it’s not necessary but a little aioli never hurt anything.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Celery Root, Apple, Carrot, and Red Cabbage Salad

Here’s a satisfyingly crunchy salad that takes advantage of the Fall harvest with local celeriac, apples, carrots, and red cabbage. Use a mandoline slicer to julienne or thinly slice 2 apples with a knife and toss in a large bowl with a tablespoon of lemon. Do the same with the celeriac, carrots, and red cabbage then add to the apples.

For the dressing whisk together some oil, apple cider vinegar, and a bit of Dijon mustard then toss with the other ingredients until well coated, salt and pepper to taste. Toasted pumpkin seeds or raisins are also a tasty addition.

Monday, October 17, 2016

Garlic Lemon and Green Olive Chicken

Nothing brings people together like food, the dinner table is where stories are shared, memories are made, and comfort given. It doesn’t matter if you’re serving pizza, pasta, or filet mignon, it’s all about spending time at the table with the people who color your life. And no other food warms you inside and out like a big pot of chicken.

Salt and pepper eight chicken thighs, skin on, bone in, then brown in a large frying pan over high heat. For best results do it in two batches so you don’t crowd the pan then set aside. Turn the heat to medium and sauté a chopped head of fennel, two lemons cut into small pieces, a quarter teaspoon of red pepper flakes, and a pint of flavorful green olives for approximately five minutes then set aside.

Next, brown 10 peeled garlic cloves for five minutes before adding two cups of chicken stock, simmer lightly until the garlic is soft enough to mash with a fork or potato masher. Layer the chicken and fennel mixture in a large soup pot, add the garlic stock and lightly simmer uncovered for 30 to 40 minutes. Salt and pepper to taste and share the warmth.

Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Corn Fritters

This has been one of the sweetest corn seasons I can remember and after weeks of boiled, barbequed, roast, and raw variations these fritters were a great way to change things up. Cut the corn from two cobs and set aside, then in a food processor quickly pulse two beaten eggs, a quarter cup each of flour and grated manchego cheese, and a teaspoon of kosher salt. Add the corn, two chopped scallions and half a jalapeno before pulsing a few more times.

Ten minutes before serving heat a large sauté pan over medium heat and add just enough oil to cover the bottom. Without crowding spoon the batter into the pan and cook until golden brown, about three to four minutes per side. Add more oil between batches if needed. Serve with your favorite green salsa or a dollop of sour cream with lime juice as an appetizer or side dish…or if you’re thinking brunch they’re also pretty amazing with an egg on top.

Monday, October 3, 2016


The eggplants, tomatoes, and basil are still coming and caponata is one of the best ways to enjoy them. Cut a couple of medium eggplants into half inch cubes and sauté along with a chopped onion over medium heat for approximately 15 minutes or until the eggplant is lightly browned. Add three to four cloves of chopped garlic and cook for another five minutes.

Next, stir in three large chopped tomatoes, a few tablespoons of capers, and a generous pour of red wine vinegar…fresh corn makes a nice addition as well. Turn down the heat, cover, and simmer for another fifteen minutes before adding some chopped basil and salt and pepper to taste. Serve warm, cold, or at room temperature.