Thursday, January 14, 2016

Ruth Reichl's Beef, Wine and Onion Stew From "My Kitchen Year. 136 Recipes that Saved My Life"


As promised earlier this month, this blog has not heard the last of Ruth Reichl’s latest book (Random House 2015).   Completely coincidentally, while Ruth wrote of yet another snowstorm marooning her and her husband in their upstate New York house, we here in the city had our first plunge in temperatures.   With not a snowflake in sight nor any on the horizon, this recipe called to me nonetheless.   First of all, what is more warming than stew?   And what tastes better than a stew left overnight where it develops even more flavor?  You take it out of the refrigerator then next day, peel away the layer of fat and continue slowly reheating the dish.  Andrew was away this past weekend and so I turned Sunday into a leisurely day of stew making so that I could turn Monday night, when the temperature took its nosedive, into stew night. What makes this particular stew so extraordinary?  And why isn’t it a recipe for Boeuf Bourguignon?  It sure comes darn close with its ingredient list almost identical however this is Ruth’s stew and it's well worth putting on your winter cooking list.

Sunday, January 10, 2016

White Bolognese with Pennine adapted from Amanda Hesser in The New York Times


Amanda Hesser of Food 52 and The New York Times
This terrific recipe checks off at least 3 boxes on my list. First, nothing is more comforting on a winter night than a bowl of pasta with a really great sauce.  This fits that bill perfectly.  It’s a cinch to make, easy enough for any weeknight.  Its one of those dishes that tastes better and better as you eat more of it, discovering more of its seasonings as you do. Second, it’s from Amanda Hesser, author of the most recent version of The New York Times Cookbook.  While at the Times, Ms. Hesser wrote no fewer than 750 stories and featured recipes.  That was before she even got to the cookbook.  Ms. Hesser then took off and founded, along with a partner, Merrill Stubbs, Food 52. This wildly successful food website that won a James Beard Award straight out of the gate in 2012 and the IACP (International Association of Culinary Professionals) Award for Best Website in 2013. To say she knows her way around the kitchen doesn’t do her justice.   And finally, it’s a recipe that let me dip into its past. There I discovered a rich history as interesting as the dish itself.