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.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Lazy Cod Enchiladas

Why wrap when you can stack? Preheat your oven to 350, warm up some enchilada sauce, then cut the cod into four-inch pieces and season liberally with chili powder, salt, pepper, and few pinches of cayenne pepper. In a non-stick pan, sauté the fish over medium high heat until barely cooked through and set aside.

Pour about a third of your enchilada sauce into a large oven proof dish, then one by one dip some tortillas into the sauce to coat and layer the bottom of the dish. Put some fish on top of each tortilla, then dip another layer of tortillas into the reserved sauce and stack on top.

To finish, cover with any leftover sauce, a Mexican cheese blend, and some sliced jalapenos, scallions, or sliced black olives. Bake until the cheese is fully melted and the edges start to brown.

Serve with some sour cream, salsa, or cilantro.

Thursday, June 20, 2019

Thai Cucumber Peanut Salad

Even if you don’t make the cucumbers the spicy peanut cilantro mixture alone is worth doing, works amazingly well on salads, meats, and veggies. To make the topping simply throw a teaspoon of chili flakes, along with a quarter cup each of fresh cilantro and salted peanuts, and grind until finely chopped.

Cut some Persian cucumbers in half, then in two-inch pieces. Whisk together three tablespoons of peanut butter, two tablespoons each of soy sauce and rice vinegar, a teaspoon of sugar, a half teaspoon of kosher salt, and a minced garlic clove.

Toss the cucumbers with the peanut sauce and half the cilantro topping, then serve with the rest of the topping over the top.

Thursday, June 13, 2019

Mushroom Spinach Spaghetti Pie

This spaghetti pie is the bomb, literally and figuratively. And just the thing for this hectic time of year when you can never have enough leftovers for last minute dinners.

Preheat your oven to 425 then boil a pound of spaghetti until al dente, drain and set aside. In a large Teflon or cast-iron pan, saute a finely chopped onion in some olive oil until translucent. Add four minced garlic cloves and a pound of sliced mushrooms…any mix of cremini, baby bellas, or wild mushrooms will work. Season with salt and pepper and saute for about ten minutes stirring frequently. Scoop the mixture into a large bowl.

In the same pan, add another splash of olive oil, 5 to 8 ounces of fresh baby spinach, and a generous amount of salt and pepper. Saute for two minutes, then add to the bowl with the mushroom mixture.

In another large bowl, scramble 3 eggs and a cup and a half of whole milk. Add the cooked spaghetti, the mushroom spinach mixture, 3 cups of Fontina cheese, 1 ½ teaspoons of salt, a teaspoon of pepper, and a cup each of fresh ricotta and grated parmesan. Mix really well then scrape back into your saute pan and bake for about a half an hour or until the top is golden.

Wait at least fifteen minutes before cutting. Serve hot, later at room temp, or cold out of the fridge. Trust me, the mess you’re going to make is worth it.

Monday, June 3, 2019

Braised Lemon Caper Chicken

I’ll take a chicken thigh over a breast any day, but if you do prefer breasts, braising gives you your best shot at keeping them moist. Liberally season your chicken with salt and pepper, dust with flour, brown on both sides over high heat in an ovenproof skillet, then set aside.

Turn down the heat to medium and add five chopped garlic cloves to the pan, sauté for a minute then pour in two cups of chicken stock and bring back to a simmer. Stir in two tablespoons each of lemon zest and coarsely chopped capers and let it cook for another couple of minutes. Return the chicken to the pan and bake in the oven for 30 to 45 minutes at 350 depending on the cut and size of your chicken.

To thicken the sauce, set the chicken to the side and return the pan to the stove and boil lightly for a few minutes…you could add some cannellini beans at this point too if you wanted. Salt and pepper to taste, stir in some chopped parsley, then pour the thickened sauce over the chicken.