Sunday, May 10, 2015

Sirloin Steak

I only made the steak portion of this recipe. It was excellent, but you really need to have a great cut of meat.

Hands-On Time 20 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Serves 4

3/4 pound frozen French fries
1/2 cup sour cream
2 tablespoons prepared horseradish
kosher salt and black pepper
2 tablespoons herbes de Provence
1 1/2 pound sirloin steak (1 inch thick)
2 teaspoons olive oil


Cook the French fries according to the package directions.
In a small bowl, mix together the sour cream, horseradish, and pepper.

Rub the steak with the herbes de Provence; season with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper.

Cook the steak in the oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, 3 to 5 minutes per side for medium rare. Let rest 5 minutes, then slice against the grain.

Serve the steak with the fries and horseradish cream.

Smashed Twice Cooked Potatoes

This recipe from Bon Appetit is great. I loved the contrast of the lemon juice and crispy potatoes. I added fresh oregano. My wife is not a fan of lemon juice but she loves potatoes and she ate them because they are that good.


2½ pounds medium Yukon Gold potatoes
⅓ cup olive oil, plus more for serving
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
2 leeks, dark-green parts discarded, cut into 1-inch pieces
4 green garlic bulbs, white and pale-green parts only, or 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice


Steam potatoes in a steamer basket in a covered pot filled with 2" water until tender, 15–20 minutes. Transfer potatoes to a plate; let cool. Press with your hand to flatten until skins split and some flesh is exposed (a few may fall apart).

Heat half of ⅓ cup oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add half of potatoes; season with salt and pepper. Cook, tossing occasionally, until potatoes start to brown, 8–10 minutes. Add half of leeks and garlic; cook, tossing, until potatoes are brown and crisp and leeks are golden and soft, about 4 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl. Repeat with remaining oil, potatoes, leeks, and garlic.

Add lemon zest and juice to potatoes and toss well; season with salt and pepper. Serve drizzled with more oil.

Garlic Confit Toast

This recipe is from Bon Appetit. The fancy name is silly, but the taste is not. Garlic bread by any other name is garlic bread and as long as it is good, who cares?


1 head garlic, cloves peeled
½ cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 teaspoons chopped oregano
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Kosher salt
1 baguette


Cook garlic in butter in a small covered saucepan over medium-low heat until golden brown and very soft, 15−20 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl; let cool. 

Add Parmesan, oregano, lemon zest, and red pepper flakes to garlic and mash to a paste; season with kosher salt. 

Heat broiler. Slice baguette in half lengthwise, then crosswise. Broil, cut side down, on a foil-lined baking sheet until golden brown, about 2 minutes (watch carefully). Let cool slightly, then spread cut side with garlic paste. Broil until cheese is golden and bubbling, about 2 minutes. Slice.

Leftover Minestrone

This recipe comes from Saveur. Minestrone is just a fantastic soup and I love the ad hoc nature of this recipe. It's one of those great - "whatever is at hand" - recipes that will hold up to the test of time.

1 cup of a combination of diced onion, carrot, celery, leek, and fennel
3 cloves garlic, sliced
½ cup olive oil
A small pinch of chile flakes
The end of a piece of cured meat or hard salami (about 5 oz.), diced
1 cup any combination parsley, thyme, marjoram, basil leaves, roughly chopped
2-3 cups any combination kale, spinach, or other greens, roughly chopped (stems and leaves, ribs, and cores, cooked or raw)
½ cup well-chopped whole tomatoes, or drained canned tomatoes
Optional: ½ to 1 cup chopped root vegetables (if they are there and need to be cooked, or cooked and need to be eaten)
6 cups cooked beans
A Parmesan rind (about 4")
8 cups liquid, from any combination bean broth, stock, and liquid from cans of tomatoes
1 cup small pasta such as orecchiette, little tubes, or small penne
Pesto, olive tapenade, fresh ricotta, or parsley for garnish

1. Cook the onion, carrot, celery, leek, fennel, and garlic in the olive oil until tender in a big pot. Add the chile flakes and any cured meat. Stir to combine. Add the herbs, greens, tomatoes, root vegetables, beans, and cheese rind, crushing the tomatoes against the side of the pot. Add liquid to cover and simmer for 45 to 60 minutes, until everything has agreed to become minestrone.

2. Just before you eat the soup, cook the pasta in a pot of salted, boiling water, only enough for the soup you're planning to eat that week, and add it to the week's soup. If you freeze minestrone, cook new pasta whenever you eat the minestrone you've frozen.

3. Garnish with pesto or olive tapenade, a big dollop of fresh ricotta, or a few leaves of parsley.

Ratatouille Tart

This recipe comes from Food and Wine. I only made the ratatouille filling, not the tart, and served it over rice. I think it's a great vegetarian meal.

1 stick plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
2 tablespoons whole milk
1 tablespoon sugar
1 large egg yolk
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 small onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 large Japanese eggplant, quartered lengthwise and sliced 1/3 inch thick
Kosher salt
2 small red peppers, cut into 3/4-inch dice
1 zucchini, quartered lengthwise and sliced 1/3 inch thick
One 8-ounce can crushed tomatoes
2 tablespoons chopped oregano
1 teaspoon red wine vinegar

MAKE THE PASTRY In a bowl, beat the butter with the milk, sugar and egg yolk until smooth. Add the flour and beat at low speed until the dough starts to come together. Pat the dough into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate for 1 hour.

On a lightly floured surface, using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll out the dough to a 12-inch round. Ease it into a fluted 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom; trim the overhang. Refrigerate until firm, 1 hour.

Preheat the oven to 375°. Line the dough with parchment paper and fill with pie weights. Bake for about 30 minutes, until set. Remove the weights and parchment paper and bake until golden brown, 8 to 10 minutes longer. Transfer the tart shell to a rack and let cool to room temperature, about 1 hour.

MEANWHILE, MAKE THE RATATOUILLE In a large saucepan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Add the onion and cook over moderate heat until softened. Add the eggplant and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the red peppers, zucchini and the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil and cook until softened, 7 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and oregano and cook until the vegetables are tender and the sauce is thick, about 20 minutes. Stir in the vinegar. Season with salt and pepper and let cool.

Spoon the ratatouille into the tart shell and serve.

The ratatouille can be refrigerated for 2 days. Bring to room temperature before serving.

Coq Au Vin

This fabulous recipe comes from Food and Wine. Luscious, complex, rich - the chicken falls off the bone.

8 chicken drumsticks (2 pounds)
Kosher salt
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 slice of bacon, chopped (optional)
1/2 cup finely chopped carrot
1/2 cup finely chopped onion
1/2 cup finely chopped celery
1 1/2 cups chopped mushrooms (3 ounces)
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1/2 cup brandy
1 tablespoon tomato paste
1 bottle dry red wine
1 cup chicken stock
2 thyme sprigs, plus chopped thyme for garnish

Season the chicken with salt and pepper and dust all over with 2 tablespoons of the flour. In a large cast-iron casserole, heat the oil. Add the chicken and cook over moderately high heat, turning, until golden, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a plate.

Add the bacon to the casserole and cook until crisp, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the carrot, onion, celery, mushrooms and garlic and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden, about 5 minutes. Stir in the brandy and cook until reduced by half, 1 minute. Stir in the tomato paste and the remaining 1 tablespoon of flour until incorporated. Add the wine, stock and thyme sprigs; bring to a boil. Return the chicken to the pot and bring to a simmer. Cover and cook over low heat, turning the chicken occasionally, until very tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Transfer the chicken to a plate.

Simmer the sauce until thickened and reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and discard the thyme sprigs. Return the chicken to the sauce and heat through. Garnish with chopped thyme and serve.

The coq au vin can be refrigerated for 3 days.

Grilled Chile Chicken with Saffron Potatoes

I've been on a real grilled chicken jag lately. I've made it about 10 different ways in the last 2 months.  This recipe comes from Food and Wine. I love indian food because it's able to merge spicy and savory and cool and all sorts of different things in beautiful ways.


1 tablespoon coriander seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon fenugreek seeds
1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
2 chiles de árbol
2 garlic cloves, crushed
One 1-inch piece peeled fresh ginger, chopped
One 2-inch piece peeled fresh turmeric, chopped, or 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
2 serrano chiles, stemmed and chopped
1/2 cup canola oil, plus more for oiling
1 1/2 cups chopped cilantro
Kosher salt
4 whole chicken legs (2 pounds)
1 pound large fingerling potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
Pinch of saffron threads
Chopped mint and cilantro, and plain yogurt seasoned with salt, for serving

In a skillet, toast the coriander, cumin, fenugreek, mustard seeds and chiles de árbol over 
low heat, stirring, until very fragrant, about 5 minutes. Let cool slightly, then grind in a spice grinder.

In a blender, mince the garlic, ginger, turmeric and serranos with 1/4 cup of the oil. Add the cilantro and the remaining 
1/4 cup of oil and puree to a coarse paste. Stir in the spice mixture and 1 teaspoon of salt.

In a bowl, massage the marinade all over and under the chicken skin. Refrigerate at least 4 hours or overnight.

Light a grill or preheat a grill pan and brush with oil. Grill the chicken over medium-low heat, turning, until golden and cooked through, about 40 minutes.

In a saucepan, cover the potatoes with water and add the butter and saffron. Simmer over moderate heat until tender, about 15 minutes. Drain and season with salt.

Arrange the chicken on the potatoes on a platter and garnish with mint and cilantro. Serve with the seasoned yogurt.


The marinade can be refrigerated overnight.