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.

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Squash Curry Soup with Roast Corn

The butternut squash is pretty tasty these days, and the addition of some roast corn makes for a nice twist on a classic soup.

As the chicken stock is one of two main ingredients to this recipe, it pays to use a quality brand. Personally, I prefer the roasted chicken Better Than Bouillon concentrated base. I also think its way more economical than a liquid stock in a box.

Start by preheating your oven to 400. Toss some defrosted corn with a little bit of olive oil and salt in a shallow roasting pan, then cook for 30 to 40 minutes…or until it starts to brown around the edges.

In a large soup pot, heat a few splashes of olive oil then sauté a chopped onion until translucent. Stir in some curry powder or paste, followed by the peeled, seeded, and cubed squash. After a few minutes, add enough water to cover the squash by at least an inch then boil lightly for 20 to 30 minutes.

Once the squash is very tender, stir in a teaspoon of chicken base, let dissolve, taste, and repeat until it tastes like you want it to. Take the soup off of the heat and puree until smooth with a stick blender, or let it cool slightly, and use a food processor. Stir in the roast corn, salt to taste, and serve.

To save some time, you could substitute some drained garbanzo beans for the corn.

Wednesday, October 23, 2019

Turnips with Crispy Shallots

You could put these crispy shallots on dog food and it would be incredible, but let’s just start with turnips.

Peel and cut the turnips into one-inch chunks, then lightly boil in an inch or so of salted water in a covered pot. While the turnips are cooking, halve and thinly slice lots of peeled shallots…you’re going to want extras for whatever you’re eating tomorrow…and the next day.

In a large non-stick frying pan melt a couple tablespoons of butter then sauté the shallots over medium heat for approximately fifteen minutes. Turn often so they brown and crisp up, but be careful not to let them burn.

When the turnips are cooked through and tender, drain and mash them with some butter, salt and pepper, and if you’re feeling it, a splash of heavy cream. Serve topped with the shallots.

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

Brothy Cabbage and Beans

It’s all about what’s in your pantry when it comes to weeknight cooking, chicken stock, canned beans, onions, and garlic are all must haves.

In a medium sized pot, sauté a chopped onion until translucent then add a quarter of a head of chopped up cabbage, half a minced jalapeno, and a few pinches of salt and pepper. Leave over medium heat stirring occasionally. Once the cabbage is fully wilted, stir in a few sliced garlic cloves, a can or two of undrained black beans, and a splash of water.

Bring to a quick boil then immediately lower to a simmer. After ten or so minutes stir in some concentrated chicken stock to taste, and a few squirts of ketchup to boost the flavor.

Continue to simmer until the rest of your dinner is ready to go. Salt and pepper to taste before serving.

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Tortilla de Patatas

Warning! Making this Spanish potato omelet is definitely a pain in the spud, but if you have an hour and a little patience, it’s so worth it. There’s a reason it’s one of the most common dishes found in Spain.

I modified this recipe from one I found on Smitten Kitchen. Slice a pound and a half of unpeeled Yukon gold potatoes and a peeled sweet onion as thinly has you can. In an eight-inch non-stick frying pan heat up a cup of olive oil. Once hot, add the potatoes and onion and gently simmer for fifteen minutes, turning, and occasionally jiggling, so they cook evenly without browning.

Place a colander in a large bowl and carefully slide the mixture into the colander to drain and cool for five minutes. Generously salt and pepper.

Lightly beat six to seven eggs with some additional salt and pepper. Add the drained potatoes and onions and let soak for 10 minutes.

Return the non-stick pan to medium low heat, add a couple of tablespoons of the reserved oil, then add the potato mixture. Jiggle and flatten with a spatula, then let cook undisturbed for three to five minutes. You’ll want it to be golden on the bottom, but still wet on top.

Wearing oven mitts, set a large plate over the tortilla and quickly flip upside down, return the pan to the heat and slide the tortilla back in to cook the other side for a few minutes or more depending on the thickness. Slide it out onto a plate and lightly salt and pepper.

Slice and serve hot, at room temperature, or out of the fridge for the next few days. You can also save the oil for other uses that would benefit from an infused onion flavor.

Tuesday, October 1, 2019

Salmon with Caramelized Leeks

This could be one of the most satisfying things you can make in twenty minutes!

Salt and pepper your salmon then preheat your grill, skillet, or oven. Next, melt a few tablespoons of butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Slice your leeks in half the long way then cut into 1/8” slices, rinse and dry if necessary. Add to the hot pan along with a teaspoon of sugar and a generous sprinkle of salt and pepper…mix well.

Stir the leeks every few minutes or so, allowing them to lightly brown, but making sure they don’t burn. While they’re caramelizing start cooking your salmon. They both should be done in approximately ten minutes. Top the salmon with the leeks and enjoy.

You see what I mean? And they’re just as amazing on chicken, beef, pork, rice, grains, or pasta. Or simply on their own.