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, September 20, 2017

Crispy Fried Zucchini

I will warn you, these things are addictive. Tender, crispy, juicy, and full of the flavor of summer…make them while the zucchini is still local. Slice the zucchini or summer squash length wise into 1/8th inch strips, dust both sides with salt and pepper then set aside. Cover the bottom of a large frying pan with vegetable oil and set over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Next, prep a large bowl with a couple of scrambled egss, and another with flour, salt, pepper, and if you’re the herby type, oregano, parsley, or tarragon.

When everything is ready to go dip the zucchini slices in the egg, dredge in the flour, and then place in the hot oil. Repeat until you cover the bottom of the pan, making sure to leave a bit of room between each slice. Cook for a few minutes per side or until browned then transfer to paper towels or a brown paper bag. You may need to scrape your pan clean with a spatula between batches.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Chicken with Ratatouille

Not only is ratatouille great for making an ordinary meal extra ordinary, but this is the best time of year to make one given the availability of local vegetables. In a large pot sauté a chopped onion in a bit of oil until translucent, then add four minced garlic cloves and a cubed eggplant and cook for another ten minutes stirring occasionally.

Next into the pot goes a chopped zucchini, bell pepper, and a generous squeeze of anchovy paste for a burst of umami, continue cooking for another ten minutes. Following, stir in either a few chopped or premium canned tomatoes and a large handful of chopped basil and cook until the vegetables are tender. Salt and pepper to taste before serving over a grilled chicken breast, steak, pork chop, or lamb shoulder.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Cucumbers with Whipped Feta

I used cucumbers this time around but it could just as easily have been tomatoes, blanched green beans, or gilled zucchini…this whipped feta will make for a tasty appetizer or side dish. Puree 8 oz. of crumbled feta in a food processor for a few seconds to break up the larger chunks. Add a couple tablespoons of cream cheese or Greek yogurt, the juice from half a lemon, a peeled garlic clove, and a quarter cup of extra virgin olive oil. Run until smooth then salt and pepper to taste.

Cube your cucumber and toss with some olive, lemon juice, and salt. A few minutes before serving give each salad plate a good schmear of the feta spread then spoon the cucumber over the top. If you’re thinking appetizers, serve it as a dip with some pita chips, or on a watermelon and basil bruschetta.