HELPING FAMILY FARMS FLOURISH. HELPING FEED THE HUNGRY.
Showing posts with label Vegetable Dishes. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Vegetable Dishes. Show all posts

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Dinner with Thomas Keller: Marinated Skirt Steak and Asparagus with Tomato Bacon Stew


      
L. to R. Eric and Adam 
One night last week, Andrew, our friend Kathy and I all went to see Eric Rippert, the Chef Extraordinaire at New York’s Le Bernardin. Chef Rippert was appearing at the YMHA as part of the “Conversations with Chevaliers” series.  The participants in these talks all have one thing in common: They have all received the prestigious French ‘Legion d’Honneur’ or Order of Arts and Letters from the government of France.  It’s no surprise that Chef Rippert would be so honored. For the 20 years that he has been there,  “Le Bernardin” has been consistently listed at the top of any roster of New York’s best restaurants.  It’s also listed as the #18th best restaurant in the entire world according to San Pellegrino’s World’s 50 Best List.   I’ll save a lot of what Chef Rippert had to say to the moderator, The New Yorker’s Adam Gopnik, for a separate post.  Today I’ll tell you what he recommended when asked “What Cookbooks should a home cook own”.         

To paraphrase, Rippert said you only need 3.  He’d start with any great book that actually teaches you how to cook, the techniques for producing great meals at home.  The books that made this list were Julia Child’s “The Way to Cook” (Alfred A. Knopf 1989) is still in print although you may have to buy it in paperback.  Almost in the same breath, he mentioned the great Jacques Pepin whose “Essential Pepin” (Harcourt Mifflin Harcourt) came out in 2011.  Both books are filled with techniques and skills.  Finally, the author of “Avec Eric” (John Wiley & Son 2010), offered up Thomas Keller’s “Ad Hoc at Home” (Artisan Books 2009) as being the third essential cookbook.  (Cookbook fanciers, like yours truly, were encouraged to hear that Chef Rippert himself has ‘about a 1000 cookbooks’ which sounds about right to me.)
The Great Man himself, Thomas Keller
         Now I have all three of the recommended cookbooks. I have gone to Julia and Jacques for help more times than I could possibly remember.  Thomas Keller, on the other hand, is well-represented in our kitchen but all three volumes we have--“Bouchon”, “The French Laundry” and “Ad Hoc at Home”-- all seemed to fall into the category of ‘too intimidating’ and have remained as ‘coffee-table books’ that just happen to be kept in the kitchen.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Almond's Brussels Sprouts Hot and Cold and a Carb-Free Stuffed Pork Chop with Dijon Mustard Sauce



        
Jason Weiner with an
un-Monte's Ham
From the moment Almond Restaurant opened 12 years ago in an old roadhouse in Bridgehampton, it’s been a smash hit.  (It’s also been 
featured here before http://www.chewingthefat.us.com/2011/06/roasted-asparagus-with-lardons-and.html).  We quickly became regulars drawn by the consistently great food that comes out of Chef Jason Weiner’s kitchen and the wonderful front of the house atmosphere presided over Chef Weiner’s business partner, the inimitable Eric Lemonides.  These two childhood friends have built their careers at some of America’s best restaurants. Jason helped open San Francisco’s
Eric Lemonides in Paris...
last seen in St. Moritz.
Aqua the same year that Eric became General Manager at Piemonte Ovest at the ripe old ages of 24.  But they both came home to roost bringing with them Jason’s farm to table philosophy and Eric’s brilliant way with people. In 2001 they first opened Almond, now at 1 Ocean Road in Bridgehampton (Tel: 631-537-5665) and  in 2008 they took New York by storm with Almond NYC at 12 East 22nd St. (Tel: 212-228-7557).  

Sunday, July 28, 2013

A summer starter and a side: My Chilled Cucumber Soup and Marinated Summer Vegetables adapted from Bon Appetit



         A bowl of chilled soup can really start a summer meal off right.
Make enough of it, and anytime you want, there’s a bowl of cool comfort waiting in the fridge.   As to today’s side, it’s a terrific way to have vegetables on hand and at the ready.  You do a simple roast of the farm stand’s best, then while warm douse them with a marinade with just enough garlic and fresh oregano to give them some lift.  I wish I could say the Cucumber soup was farm stand material. The recipe calls for something from fairly far away. All the way from a greenhouse in California.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Texas Week Post 2...Kristi's Incredible Harvest Soup



Kristi
         My friend Kristi is something else.  She lives in Dallas where she runs her own business finding "real people" for clients in Advertising and Marketing. She's the best in the business so she's in perpetual motion.  She travels all over the place for her job but when she gets home, she loves to cook.  One day last week, an email arrived from Kristi, heralding the arrival of Fall.  As near as I can understand it, Fall is when the temperature in Dallas drops below 80 degrees for the first time since the previous April.   But Kristi insists that when autumn’s in the air, she makes soup.   And that’s what I did when her recipe hit my in-box.  Kristi’s own invention, Harvest soup is a warming puree of carrots and leeks and onions and sweet potatoes. But what really sets it apart is Kristi’s use of Indian inflected spices—Cardamon, turmeric and cinnamon.  There’s a little chili powder too –how could it come from Texas without it? 

Monday, October 22, 2012

It's Texas Week on Chewing the Fat! First Up, Lauren's Roast Pork Tenderloin with Honeyed Apples and Pecans courtesy of James Villas and a Wild Rice Pilaf. And on Thursday, Kristi's own recipe for Harvest Soup.




         It was quite a coincidence when Andrew came back from his trip to Dallas with not one but two dishes his sister Lauren served him while he was there.  And that same day, my dear friend Kristi, sent along an original recipe of her own.  So I thought this week we’d salute our Texas friends and family with these great dishes, which are just perfect for any fall table. Lauren is a superb cook and her recipes have appeared here before...her Roast Chicken is the best I've ever eaten http://www.chewingthefat.us.com/2011/03/laurens-roast-chicken-and-side-of.html  and talk about Texan...her Blueberry Jalapeno sauce has hundreds of hits. http://www.chewingthefat.us.com/2010/06/lauren-readys-pork-loin-with-blueberry.html. So when Lauren writes "We love this!" on a recipe, I sit up and take notice.
Country Gardens last weekend
         Pork seems to lend itself to cooking with fruit of all kinds. How many times have you seen applesauce served on the side with a grilled pork chop?   This is a far more sophisticated pairing, a stuffing made of apples and pecans and scallions soaked in honey and stuffed into pork tenderloin.  And it couldn’t be more seasonal.  It’s high Apple season in Bridgehampton where the Farm Stand was loaded with local varieties that have just been harvested.  In this dish, the tart and tangy Granny Smith is used, a perfect counterbalance to the crunch of the pecans and sweetness of the honey.   I confess to having been intimidated with the task of carefully carving a pocket for the stuffing. But I managed with the use of a sharp 10-inch knife, which I carefully slipped into the meat and ran down the length of the tenderloin stopping at one inch from the end.  I needn’t have been so anxious: I prepped this dinner out in Bridgehampton, brought it into town and asked Andrew if it looked like his sister’s.  Hers, he informed me, was butterflied, the stuffing laid into the crease of the meat and then tied with twine in multiple places.  The stuffing oozed out the top and, he said, looked perfectly fine.  She’d also made an ideal side dish with the pork—a Wild Rice Pilaf with Mushrooms.  An old Texas favorite?  Quite the contrary, it’s a Minnesota specialty that highlights their locally grown rice.  Given our recent “Arsenic in Rice” and that Texas rice is high on that list, the Minnesota connection came as a relief.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Sauteed Shrimp with Coconut Oil, Ginger and Coriander with Confetti Corn adapted from Ina Garten


         Last weekend, we had close friends staying with us and this dinner really hit the spot.  It took no time at all to put together. In fact the whole thing took about 30 minutes.  The delicious and mildly coconut-flavored shrimp cooked took about 10 minutes and the only time-consuming thing about the Confetti corn was getting it off the cob.