In the last elimination challenge before the finals in the first season of Top Chef, a panel of judges including some of the most accomplished and discerning chefs in the country chose Dave’s truffle & cognac cream macaroni & cheese, filet of beef, and collard greens & radicchio as the winning dish. The filet and greens were criticized for being “afterthoughts” to the macaroni & cheese, which itself was the favorite dish of all the judges. Why did macaroni and cheese capture the imagination of experienced chefs and critics of high-end cuisine? Continue reading
I like to cook. Really, I do. It’s just that I don’t seem to actually do it very often during the week. I come home late from work and don’t feel like making anything more complicated than a hotdog or peanut-butter sandwich. And when I do come home ready to cook, I often have nothing to cook, because I haven’t gone to the grocery store. I was looking through the cupboard trying to find something other than pasta and tomato sauce to eat when I noticed a can of black beans. I like refried beans, and thought a smoother, more liquidy version would be good as a pasta sauce. Then I ordered a pizza.
But I eventually came back to the idea, and here’s the result. It’s low fat, yet tasty and satisfying. With the beans and whole wheat pasta, it’s a good source of fiber and complete protein. Everything except the yogurt can keep for months, so it’s forgiving of my grocery shopping lapses. Continue reading
An Italian seafood stew – works easily as main dish or as starter course in smaller servings. Continue reading
I saw this very briefly on a tv cooking show and went off to find the recipe. Of course, it wasn’t available online unless you paid $35 for a 6 month subscription (yeah RIGHT!) so I made it up as I went along.
The seemingly disparate flavours combine amazingly well, and the sour cream seems to pull it all together at the end.
Of course, it could be made non dairy by leaving out the sour cream (and optional butter)and I think it would still work. If you were to do this I would cut down the heat in the relish, as the cream acts to tone this down at the end.
This is not as much work as it seems – while you need to prepare some stuff ahead of time (the marinade, the relish) it’s a perfect recipe if you’re going to home for an afternoon doing other things anyway. Also, the relish will keep in the fridge for at least a week, so you can always make extra and serve with other dishes.
These quantities serve 2. Continue reading
A spicy Mediterranean lamb dish. Goes well with tzadziki. Continue reading
An Indian dish — now thoroughly Americanized in our version — made with cubed chicken marinated in spiced yogurt and covered in a yogurt-tomato sauce. Best served over jasmine rice or naan. (But if you can do good naan, you don’t need our recipe for tikka masala, I’m sure.) Continue reading
A tasty simmering sauce for beef. Continue reading
You can spice this up by adding cayenne pepper or crushed red peppers. Continue reading
Because of the sweet-tart liquid used, this doesn't get bitter when cooked a long time, and so has a wonderful taste and texture without a bad aftertaste. I buy corned beef brisket (any cut will do) when it goes on sale for $0.89/lb. around St. Patrick's Day. (I buy a bunch.) Then I put it in the freezer, in the original package. Try to get the one with separate spices, if you can. Just get it out and put it in the fridge about two days before you want to eat it; that should give it time to defrost. I use baby carrots for the carrots; they're about the same price as regular and no prep work involved. Use the big crockpot for this. If you're single and only have a small one, cut the brisket and everything else in half, and do it two days. The core of the cabbage is the tough white part that comes up in the middle where the stem is. Try to make sure the potatoes are approximately the same size, it makes for more even cooking. A complete meal, or serve with fruit, bread, or soup, as desired. Continue reading
Like blintzes? You'll like this dish even better! Continue reading