Quick and easy sauteed kale and garlic, ready in just about 10 minutes!
Spicy Ethiopian Red Lentils , also known as Misr Wat or Mesir Wat, is the 3rd recipe in this Ethiopian food series. I generally don’t like to call something, “the best”. Because let’s face it, there are a lot of really good foods out there that are amazing. And who’s really to say that one particular dish is “the best”? But guys… seriously, these Spicy Ethiopian Red Lentils are the best lentils I’ve ever had! Like ridiculously better than any other lentil dish I’ve tasted. The secret is berbere – a blend of spices that form the cornerstone of many Ethiopian dishes.
Pico de Gallo, otherwise know as salsa fresca, is a wonderful condiment full of bright and vibrant ingredients. It is not cooked, unlike its sibling, salsa. And so it retains a wonderful fresh taste – hence the name ‘fresh sauce’.
Pico de Gallo is perfect on chips, tacos, mixed into guacamole, on top of fresh fish, or on an omelet. The possibilities are seemingly endless!
You guys, I found the best deal in town! I went to my local Asian mega-mart, and found 8 bunches of scallions for $1.00! That’s right, $1.00! This wasn’t a bottom of the barrel (we’ve got to move product or it goes bad), kind of deal – these scallions were beautifully fresh.
I used the scallions generously in my cooking throughout the week, even still… I found myself with far more than I knew what to do with! Towards the end of the week, the ends of the scallions were juuuust starting to wilt, so I remembered a time when cooking with my friend, Seung Hee. During one of our ‘cooking parties’ she roasted several bunches of scallions with just a little olive oil, salt, and pepper. Almost instantly, I could smell them roasting in the oven – incredible! The miso butter I added later, was in part an inspiration from my Asparagus with Poached Egg and Roasted Garlic Miso Butter recipe and Saveur’s, Miso Roasted Scallions. The addition of the miso butter added a wonderful balance of umami flavor the to robust flavors of the scallions. This dish is quick, super easy, and packed with immense depth… plus it make your entire house smell incredible – always a nice bonus.
Every holiday party needs a festive cocktail! This Pomegranate Champagne Cocktail uses seasonal pomegranate seeds, their juice, Cointreau (an orange liqueur), a bit of lime juice, and topped with bubbly Champagne!
We’ve all seen green beans served 6 different ways to Sundays… and then some. Personally, I like them to be served simply so I can really enjoy the delicate flavor of the fresh green beans. A little olive oil, fresh lemon juice, crushed red pepper, a pinch of salt and black pepper – and that’s all she wrote.
Have you ever pickled something? Cucumbers, beets, garlic… radishes? It’s easier than you think. As a kid, my dad always made pickled carrots. He would buy a jar of pickles and once we ate all of them he would refill the jar (remaining pickling liquid included) with sliced carrots.
Ok, so this recipe isn’t quite as easy as my dad’s method. However, I’m no food safety expert, but I kinda feel like you shouldn’t be using preserving liquid over-and-over again. Granted, my father didn’t grow-up with much, and I know he was raised using creative ways to make things stretch; but I’m just sayin’ – botulism… probably sucks.
For safety sake, lets go with this recipe. Feel free to use any vegetable like. I particularly like pickled radishes because they turn a lovely shade of rose due to the color of the red skins bleeding into the liquid. They also go so well with fried or other fatty food – the vinegar profile really cuts through some of those heavier flavors to create a wonderful balance. They’re also great on salads or even as a snack.
Who doesn’t LOVE French fries?! I’m mean come on, I don’t care if you’re a health nut, ‘my body is a temple’ type – you will inevitably sneak a fry from time to time. The secret to making great fries is all about the texture. You want a fry that is slightly crisp on the outside and creamy on the inside. To achieve this, is to cook them twice. First at a low temperature to blanch the potato and then for a second time at a higher temperature to crisp up the outside.
Fries go so well with a multitude of condiments- sprinkled with Old Bay, dunked in ketchup and/or mayonnaise, plunged in curry sauce, or doused with malt vinegar. But my all-time favorite way to eat them, is to dip them in Sriracha Aioli – a rich and creamy sauce with a hint of garlic and a touch of heat. It’s the perfect compliment to golden delicious fries.
Over a decade ago I found myself exploring the cobblestone streets of Taormina, a small town perched on the side of a mountain along the east coast of Sicily. I have been fortunate enough to have traveled all over Italy, but my journey first began on the island just across the Strait of Messina – and so it will always hold a special place in my heart. It was the off-season and so I was able to navigate the town uncluttered by tourists from every corner of the globe. Old stone buildings whose windows and balconies opened up to the streets below were decorated with wrought iron baskets cascading with flowers. As medieval church bells rang out in harmony from the piazza, I popped into a small wine bar with opera music playing from behind the counter. I was sitting at a table when (no joke) a group at the bar broke out into song, keeping miraculously in-tune with the recorded Italian opera singer. This only happens in the movies, right? I’m telling you, this place is nothing short of magical!
Night had fallen by the time I left my newly beloved wine bar and I could see Mount Etna erupting in the night’s sky. It was like Sicily was pulling out all the stops – and it was impressive! A few doors down I found a little hole in the wall shop selling sweets. I purchased a small cup of lemon granita – delicate shavings of ice flavored with the fruits of Sicily. I sat there, taking in the incredible view as I enjoyed the naturally sweet and refreshing dessert – it was the perfect ending to a spectacularly perfect day.
Do Chua is a Vietnamese staple of pickled carrots and daikon. The acidity pairs perfectly with grilled meats or anything that is fatty. They’re great on Banh Mi, Bun Thit Nuong, or even on grilled hot dogs.
The tangy vinegar in this side dish is a nice compliment to something savory – try pairing it with Yakitori, Burgers, or Hot Dogs!
This is a fantastic oil. I imagine if were possible to wring out basil leaves, this is what you would end up with – herbaceous, delicate, essence of basil. Use this as a dipping oil for crusty bread, drizzle over bruschetta, salmon, or even on top of white bean soup.
When I was working on the pulled pork slider post, my husband suggested adding a barbecue sauce (as I mentioned earlier in that particular post, I sadly don’t know much about barbecue). Upon his recommendation I began thinking of what flavors I wanted in my sauce. Almost immediately I knew I wanted to incorporate sriracha, which lead to additional Asian ingredients and pairings, such as: soy sauce, lime juice, and rice wine vinegar. However, this being a BBQ sauce, I wanted to keep some of the traditional ingredients like Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, and ketchup. Adding a few more ingredients, both traditional and non-traditional, I came up with a BBQ sauce I’m actually quite pleased with; sweet, smokey, and tangy, with a bit of heat. This sauce truly punches up the other flavors present in the pulled pork sandwich.