CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2
CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR 2

MY FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR WAS BY WAY OF MARCELLA HAZAN. I’D NEVER USED ANCHOVIES IN ANYTHING BUT A CAESAR SALD AND IT AMAZED ME HOW UNDETECTABLE THEY WERE IN THE FINISHED DISH, MERELY SERVING TO ENHANCE THE FLAVOR WITH A RICH UMAMI, BEFORE THAT WORD WAS COINED IN WESTERN COOKING. THIS BECAME ONE OF MY GO-TO DISHES.  NO ONE EVER GUESSED IT CONTAINED ANCHOVIES. (more…)

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

“HATES CALIFORNIA, IT’S COLD AND IT’S DAMP…” WHEN IT DOES GET COLD HERE OR ANYWHERE, NOTHING SATISFIES LIKE SOUP. THE FLAVOR IN THIS WHITE BEAN SOUP COMES FROM THE SMOKED HAM HOCK AND THE PARMESAN RINDS, WHICH I HORDE FOR JUST THESE OCCASIONS. YOU CAN SIMMER THE SOUP ON A LOW FLAME, BUT SIMMERING IT IN THE OVEN IS EASIER SINCE YOU DON’T HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT IT BURNING ON THE BOTTOM AND ONLY HAVE TO STIR OCCASIONALLY. (more…)

CHICKEN CHASSEUR
CHICKEN CHASSEUR

THE CHASSEUR (HUNTER) IN CHICKEN CHASSEUR TELLS YOU IT CONTAINS MUSHROOMS, PROBABLY CHOPPED ONIONS, GARLIC, TOMATO AND WINE.  THE REST IS UP FOR GRABS. IN THIS CASE, THE MUSHROOMS, DRIED PORCINI, ARE THERE PURELY FOR FLAVOR — AN INTENSE, WOODSY FLAVOR — WHICH YOU CAN’T GET FROM FRESH BUTTON MUSHROOMS.  THERE’S A SLIGHT NOD TO TOMATOES IN THE FORM OF TOMATO PASTE, RED WINE TO ADD A BIT OF ROUNDNESS AND DEPTH, CIPOLLINI BECAUSE I LOVE CIPOLLINI, AND POTATOES TO SOAK UP THE FLAVORS AND SAVE YOU FROM HAVING TO MAKE A SEPARATE STARCH.  STILL, A CRUSTY BAGUETTE COULDN’T HURT.

Click here to download recipe

BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS
BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THE WOODSY FUNKINESS OF BROWN MUSHROOMS IS ENHANCED IN THIS SIMPLE PASTA DISH WITH A MIXTURE OF ANCHOVIES, HERBS AND GARLIC. I BORROWED THIS FLAVOR MIXTURE FROM MARCELLA HAZAN’S RECIPE FOR CHICKEN WITH VINEGAR. IT’S ONE OF THE MOST POPULAR CHICKEN DISHES I COOK AND NO ONE — I MEAN NO ONE — EVER GUESSES THE SECRET INGREDIENT, ANCHOVIES. YOU CAN CERTAINLY MAKE THIS DISH WITH SHIITAKE, WHITE, OR WILD MUSHROOMS, BUT IT TRANSFORMS ORDINARY MUSHROOMS INTO SOMETHING RICHER AND MORE EXOTIC.
Click here to download recipe

SHRIMP WITH CELERY
SHRIMP WITH CELERY

CELERY, WHICH PRIOR TO THE 16TH CENTURY WAS USED EXCLUSIVELY IN EUROPE AS A MEDICINAL HERB, IS A KIND OF WORKHORSE VEGETABLE.  PAIRED WITH CHOPPED ONION AND CARROTS, IT ADDS A GREEN NOTE TO SOUPS AND STEWS. IT’S INDISPENSABLE IN CHICKEN OR EGG SALAD.  A SUPPORTING PLAYER, CELERY IS RARELY FEATURED ON ITS OWN, AT LEAST IN THE WEST.  THE CHINESE KNOW BETTER AND SOME OF THE BEST SHRIMP DISHES I’VE HAD, SUCH AS JADE SHRIMP, ARE SIMPLY SHRIMP WITH CELERY AND GREEN HERBS.  HERE I’VE ADDED LEMON ZEST AND SCALLIONS.  STILL, IT COULDN’T BE EASIER TO MAKE AND ONCE YOU’VE DONE YOUR PREP AND MIS-EN-PLACE, THE TOTAL COOKING TIME IS ABOUT THREE MINUTES.  IT’S WHAT GIVES THIS DISH ITS BRIGHT AND LIVELY FLAVOR.
Click here to download recipe

VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON
VEAL CHOPS ROBUCHON

I HAVE FOR THE MOST PART STOPPED EATING VEAL.  FIRST, BECAUSE THE MILK-FED VEAL WE GET IN THIS COUNTRY IS A PRODUCT OF THE CRUELEST KIND OF FACTORY FARMING, AND SECOND, BECAUSE FREE-RANGE VEAL– THE KIND YOU GET IN EUROPE– IS ALMOST AS RARE HERE AS IT IS EXPENSIVE.   (more…)

MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD
MELON AND PROSCUITTO SALAD

I WOULD HAVE POSTED THIS LAST WEEK, BUT FORGOT TO PHOTOGRAPH IT. LAST WEEK’S GUESTS WERE SO PLEASED WITH THE SALAD, HOWEVER, THAT I MADE IT AGAIN LAST NIGHT WITH SOME MINOR FINE-TUNING AND A DIFFERENT COMBINATION OF MELONS. THE PLEASURE OF THIS SALAD COMES, OF COURSE, FROM THE MELONS. THANKS TO GLOBAL WARMING MELONS ARE STILL IN SEASON AND WEISER FARMS HAS FEATURED A VERITABLE MELON CORNUCOPIA: CANTALOUPE, CANARY, GALIA, CHARENTAIS, AND WATER MELON. THE MELONS ARE SO SWEET THAT THEY CRY OUT FOR LIME JUICE. THE PROSCUITTO OR SERRANO IS BOTH SALTY AND SWEET. THIS IS AFTER ALL DECONSTRUCTED OR PERHAPS I SHOULD SAY RECONSTRUCTED PROSCUITTO AND MELON, BUT MUCH MORE FUN TO EAT.

Click here to download recipe

CHINESE SPARE RIBS
CHINESE SPARE RIBS

YES, THESE ARE AS GOOD AS THEY LOOK. AND I DON’T EVEN HAVE A GRILL. EXCEPT FOR A FEW MINOR CHANGES, THIS IS 95% JULIA MOSKIN’S RECIPE FROM THE NY TIMES. YOU MARINATE THE RIBS IN HOISIN SAUCE, GARLIC, SOY SAUCE AND OTHER SEASONINGS. THE NEXT DAY (OR FOUR HOURS LATER) YOU STEAM THEM SLOWLY ON A RACK IN THE OVEN, THEN FINISH THEM OFF AT A HIGHER TEMPERATURE. (more…)

BORSHT
BORSHT

I’M ACTING IN A PLAY WHICH OPENS THIS WEEK AT THE MATRIX THEATRE IN LOS ANGELES CALLED “JEWS, CHRISTIANS AND SCREWING STALIN” IN WHICH BORSHT PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN THE FAMILY HISTORY (BUBBY’S UNCLE WAS A BORSHT TASTER IN THE TSAR’S ARMY.) SO IT IS ONLY FITTING THAT I POST THIS RECIPE. BORSHT IS KIND OF A GENERIC NAME FOR ANY SOUP INVOLVING BEETS AND OFTEN CONTAINS MEAT, WHICH MAKES IT HARDIER THAN THE ALL-VEGETABLE VERSION I OFFER HERE. THIS PARTICULAR RECIPE WAS INSPIRED BY A LUNCH AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS IN THE JEWISH MUSEUM ON FIFTH AVENUE. IT WAS THICK BUT SMOOTH, NOT TOO SWEET, AND A TAD SPICY, MADE WITH WATER AND NOT STOCK. IT’S AS GOOD AS THE BORSHT I HAD AT RUSS AND DAUGHTERS, MAYBE EVEN A BISL BETTER.
Click here to download recipe

MORELS À LA CRÊME
MORELS À LA CRÊME

MORELS, LIKE MOST WILD MUSHROOMS, ARE SEASONAL, DELICIOUS, AND EXPENSIVE, SELLING FOR $65 A POUND IN THE HOLLYWOOD FARMERS’ MARKET. SO WHEN THEY TURNED UP ON FOOD 52 FOR $35 A POUND, WHAT COULD I DO?  I MEAN WHO CAN RESIST A BARGAIN?  I LOOKED UP SEVERAL RECIPES AND THE MOST APPEALING WAS ONE BY LUDOVIC LEFEBVRE, MEANT TO ACCOMPANY GRILLED VEAL CHOPS (more…)

This Week’s Meal

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP

BROWSE BY TYPE

RECENT RECIPES

  • HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP HAM HOCK AND WHITE BEAN SOUP
  • CHICKEN CHASSEUR CHICKEN CHASSEUR
  • BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS BUCATINI WITH MUSHROOMS

THANKSGIVING PRIMER

EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT THANKSGIVING AND WEREN’T AFRAID TO ASK WAS ANSWERED THIS WEEK IN THE FOOD SECTION OF THE N.Y. TIMES, L.A. TIMES AND MOST LIKELY EVERY OTHER MAJOR OR MINOR NEWSPAPER IN THESE UNITED STATES.  SO AT THE RISK OF BORING YOU SILLY, I’M ONLY OFFERING A FEW TIPS AND SUGGESTIONS ACRUED OVER A LIFETIME OF PREPARING DINNER FOR EVERYONE’S FAVORITE  HOLIDAY.

THE TURKEY  THERE’S A REASON WE ONLY COOK TURKEY ONCE A YEAR.  IT’S NOT AS GOOD AS CHICKEN, DUCK, SQUAB, QUAIL, OR GOOSE.  IN FACT, WE ASSOCIATE TURKEY WITH BLAND, OVERCOOKED, TASTELESS FOWL.  THAT’S BECAUSE 98% OF THE TURKEYS WE BUY ARE FACTORY-FARMED BIRDS, CROSS-BRED FOR THEIR EXCESSIVE BREAST MEAT.  HEIRLOOM OR HERITAGE TURKEYS, WHICH ARE DESCENDED FROM PRE-FACTORY BIRDS ARE A WHOLE OTHER ANIMAL.  THERE ARE BOURBON REDS, STANDARD BRONZE, NARRAGANSETT, AND MIDGET WHITES.  I DON’T KNOW WHICH HERITAGE BIRD I’M GETTING FROM WHOLE FOODS, BUT THE ONES I’VE COOKED IN THE PAST HAVE MORE DARK MEAT.  THEY’RE GAMIER AND A TAD TOUGHER THAN ORDINARY TURKEYS, SO I’M ROAST MINE AT AROUND 350 AFTER FIFTEEN MINUTES IN A 450 OVEN.  FOR A 10-LB BIRD, FIGURE ONE AND A HALF TO TWO HOURS.  I’VE GIVEN UP ON BRINING ALTHOUGH I DO RECOMMEND SEASONING THE TURKEY WITH SALT, PEPPER AND FRESH HERBS A COUPLE OF DAYS AHEAD OF TIME.  DO I STUFF MY TURKEY?  NEVER.

GRAVY  A DAY OR SO AHEAD, I MAKE TURKEY STOCK WITH NECKS AND GIZZARDS, WHICH I BROWN FIRST IN THE PAN BEFORE ADDING AROMATIC VEGETABLES, LOTS OF THYME, A WHOLE HEAD OF UNPEELED GARLIC, PARSLEY STEMS AND A BAY LEAF.  ONCE THE BONES HAVE BROWNED I ADD 2 TBSPS OF FLOUR AND STIR THAT IN TILL IT BROWNS A BIT.   THEN I TOP UP THE POT WITH WATER AND SIMMER FOR A COUPLE OF HOURS.  OVERNIGHT THE FAT WILL CONGEAL ON TOP SO IT’S EASY TO REMOVE.  THEN REDUCE THE STOCK AS MUCH AS YOU LIKE.  I ADD MORE CHOPPED GIZZARDS, HEARTS AND, AT THE END, LIVER.

GREEN VEGETABLES  IF YOU DON’T FEEL LIKE TRIMMING 4 POUNDS OF STRING BEANS OR BRUSSELS SPROUTS, ROUGHLY CHOP SEVERAL BUNCHES OF BLACK KALE, CHARD, MUSTARD GREENS, AND/OR GREEN CABBAGE.  WHILE YOUR BIRD IS RESTING, SCATTER THE GREENS IN THE BOTTOM OF THE ROASTING PAN, RAISE THE HEAT TO 450, AND RETURN TO OVEN FOR ABOUT FIFTEEN MINUTES, TURNING OVER THE GREENS AS THEY WILT.  IF YOU’RE USING CABBAGE AS WELL, ADD IT TO THE PAN FIRST AND COOK FOR TEN MINUTES BEFORE ADDING THE CHARD AND OTHER GREENS.  THE GREENS ABSORB THE FLAVOR OF THE COOKING JUICES.  ARRANGE THEM ON YOUR SERVING PLATTER WITH THE TURKEY ON TOP.

SIDE DISHES   CREAMED PEARL ONIONS.  PEELING THEM IS DRUDGERY, BUT EVERYBODY LOVES THEM. HERE’S A LINK TO MY RECIPE https://johnpleshettemealoftheweek.com/wp-content/uploads/CREAMED-ONIONS.pdf.

MASHED POTATOES.   USE POTATOES WITH A HIGH STARCH CONTENT SUCH AS IDAHO OR GERMAN BUTTERBALL.  I BOIL THEM IN MILK WITH LOTS OF GARLIC AND RUN THEM THROUGH A MOULI, THEN BEAT IN ABOUT A STICK OF BUTTER WHICH I’VE CUT INTO SMALL PIECES AS ONE DOES WHEN MAKING A BUERRE BLANC.  DON’T PUREE THEM IN A FOOD PROCESSOR.  THEY’LL TURN GLUEY.  MASHING BY HAND IS GOOD TOO.

STUFFING.  I TRY SOMETHING DIFFERENT EACH YEAR.  I LOVE CORNBREAD BUT FIND IT AWFULLY DENSE FOR STUFFING.  SO THIS THANKSGIVING I’M MIXING BROKEN PIECES OF CORNBREAD (BAKED AHEAD OF TIME) WITH TORN FRENCH BREAD CROUTONS. I’LL SAUTÉ ITALIAN SAUSAGE MEAT, THEN ADD CHOPPED ONION AND CELERY AND COOK TILL SOFT.  I’LL COMBINE THE SAUSAGE MIXTURE, CORNBREAD, AND FRENCH BREAD TOGETHER BY HAND ADDING AS MUCH TURKEY STOCK AS I NEED SO THE STUFFING IS MOIST, THEN PACK IT ALL INTO AN AU GRATIN DISH.  I MAY GRATE A LITTLE PARMESAN ON TOP BEFORE BAKING IT IN THE OVEN AT AROUND 375.

DESSERT  LYNN’S MAKING A DAVID SAX PUMPKIN PIE AND A PECAN TART WHICH INCLUDES DATES IN THE FILLING.  AND MAYBE, FRESH BANANA ICE CREAM.

WINE   I LIKE TO POUR SOME KIND OF SPARKLING WINE BEFORE DINNER.  IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE CHAMPAGNE.  I’M PARTIAL TO CAVA, WHICH UNLIKE PROSECCO, IS MADE USING THE MÉTHODE CHAMPAGNOISE.  THERE ARE SOME FABULOUS VINS CRÉMANT FROM VARIOUS REGIONS IN FRANCE WHICH ARE ALSO EXCELLENT, NOT TO MENTION SPARKLING WINES FROM EVERYWHERE IN THE U.S. FROM LONG ISLAND TO SONOMA.

CHEERS AND BON APPETIT!