Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Cauliflower-Goat Cheese Gratin

1 head cauliflower, cut into florets
2 cups heavy cream
1/2 pound Monterey Jack cheese, coarsely grated
2 cups grated Parmesan
6 ounces goat cheese, cut into small pieces
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Layer the cauliflower, heavy cream, and the 3 cheeses in a medium casserole dish. Season with salt and pepper. Roast for 20 to 30 minutes or until the cauliflower is soft and the sauce has thickened slightly. Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes before serving.

Cook's Note: Recipe can be doubled and made in a roasting pan.


Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Roast Prime Rib with Thyme Au Jus

1 bone-in prime rib (6 to 7 pounds)
8 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
Salt and coarsely ground black pepper
2 cups red wine
4 cups beef stock
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme leaves

Thirty minutes before roasting the prime rib, remove from the refrigerator and let come to room temperature.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Make small slits all over the prime rib and fill each slit with a slice of the garlic. Season liberally with the salt and coarse pepper, place on a rack set inside a roasting pan and roast for about 2 hours until medium-rare, or until a thermometer inserted into the center of the meat registers 135 degrees F. Remove the meat to a platter, and tent with foil to keep warm.

Place the roasting pan on top of the stove over 2 burners set on high heat. Add the wine to the pan drippings in the pan and cook over high heat until reduced, scraping the bottom of the pan with a wooden spoon. Add the stock and cook until reduced by half. Whisk in the thyme and season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Slice meat as desired and serve with thyme au jus.


Buche de Noel

Walnut Biscuit:
5 eggs, separated, room temperature
100 grams granulated sugar
25 grams granulated maple sugar
125 grams cake flour, sifted
3 ounces toasted walnuts, finely chopped

Pastry Cream

4 large egg yolks
55 grams cornstarch
40 grams sugar, plus 75 grams sugar
75 grams maple syrup
2 tablespoons whiskey (recommended: Jack Daniels)
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped
2 cups milk
28 grams butter
1/2 teaspoons salt
1/4 teaspoon maple extract
1 cup heavy cream

113 grams sugar
3 large egg yolks
1 whole egg
1 to 2 tablespoons whisky (recommended: Jack Daniels)
1/4 teaspoon maple extract
12 ounces butter, room temperature
Sugared Cranberries:
1 cup sugar
1 cinnamon stick
2 cups cranberries (cannot have been frozen)
Candied walnuts, store-bought
Candied orange peel, store-bought
Maple Tuiles

225 grams butter, at room temperature
350 grams maple syrup
1/2 vanilla bean, scraped
1/2 teaspoon salt
240 grams egg whites
225 grams all-purpose flour
Luster dust, optional

For the walnut biscuit:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a half sheet pan, line with parchment paper, butter the paper and dust with flour.

Whip the egg whites to soft peaks. Beat in both sugars and whip to a stiff, glossy meringue.

Alternately fold the cake flour and egg yolks into the meringue in 3 batches, starting and ending with the flour. Fold in the nuts.

Spread the batter evenly in the pan, and bake until the cake is pale gold, the center springs back when you press it lightly with your finger, and the edges start to pull from the sides of the pan, 10 to 12 minutes.

For the pastry cream:
Whisk the yolks, cornstarch, and the 40 grams sugar in a medium bowl; the mixture will be very thick, but try to whisk enough to remove most of the lumps.

Put the 75 grams sugar in a medium saucepan and cook over medium heat until dark brown; don't worry if it crystallizes a bit. Turn the heat to low and whisk in the maple syrup, then whisk in the whisky, turn up the heat, and let simmer for 1 to 2 minutes to boil off the alcohol.

Whisk the milk and vanilla bean scrapings into the caramel mixture and bring to simmer. Slowly whisk about half of the hot mixture into the yolks, then whisk that mixture back into the pot, bring to a boil, whisking, and cook, still whisking, until thickened. Remove from the heat and whisk in the butter, salt and maple extract. Pour into a shallow dish, press plastic wrap onto the surface, and chill until set and very cold, about 4 hours.

Beat the cold pastry cream in a standing mixer until smooth. When ready to use, whip the cream until it is very stiff, then beat into the pastry cream. Chill until ready to use.

For the buttercream:
Put the sugar in a medium pot and add enough water just to moisten; use your fingers to wet the sugar evenly. Bring to a boil. While the sugar is heating, start beating the yolks and egg in a standing mixer with the whisk attachment.

When the syrup reaches about 240 degrees F on a candy thermometer (softball stage), pour it into the yolks with the mixer still running, taking care not to pour it onto the whisk. Beat until cooled to room temperature. Beat in the whisky and the maple extract.

Cream the butter in another mixing bowl using the paddle attachment. Beat in the cooled egg mixture until smooth. You can use it right away, or chill it overnight; if you chill it, rebeat when you are ready to assemble the cake.

For the sugared cranberries:
Have a cookie sheet or shallow dish and a slotted spoon next to the stove.

Put the sugar in a medium pot and add enough water just to moisten; use your fingers to wet the sugar evenly. Add the cinnamon stick.

Bring to a boil, add the cranberries, and immediately pull from the heat. Transfer the cranberries to the cookie sheet with the slotted spoon. Cool.

For the maple tuiles:
Cream the butter, maple syrup, vanilla bean scrapings and salt until smooth. Scrape the sides of the bowl and beat in egg whites until smooth. Beat in the flour. Let the batter rest and hour or so at room temperature, or overnight in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before baking.

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with a silpat. Using a stencil, smear the batter thinly on the silpat and bake until dark golden brown, about 6 to 8 minutes. Remove from the pan while still warm. If you want to shape the cookies, put them over a bottle or rolling pin while warm; let cool. If desired, brush lightly with luster dust.

Turn the cooled cake onto a piece of parchment or waxed paper with a long side near you. Spread the chilled pastry cream evenly over the surface, leaving a 2-inch border across from you. Using the parchment paper to lift, roll the cake as tightly as possible. Set seam side down on a platter or large pan, and chill for an hour or so.

Frost the cake with the buttercream, smoothing the surface so it looks like bark. Decorate with candied cranberries, walnuts, orange peel, and tuiles.


Friday, November 11, 2011

Milk Chocolate Banana Pudding

Milk Chocolate Pastry Cream:
3 cups whole milk
3 ounces good-quality milk chocolate, finely chopped
1-ounce unsweetened chocolate, finely chopped
6 large egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
12 ounces thin chocolate wafer cookies (recommended: Nabisco)
4 large bananas, peeled and sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 cups sweetened whipped cream
Milk chocolate shavings, for garnish

Place milk in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer. Whisk in both chocolates and heat until melted and smooth. Remove from the heat.

Whisk together the yolks, sugar, and cornstarch in a large bowl. Slowly whisk in the chocolate-milk mixture and then return the mixture to the saucepan over medium-high heat and whisk until thickened. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla, and transfer to a clean bowl. Place a piece of plastic wrap over the surface of the pastry cream and let cool to room temperature.

Spoon about 1 cup of the pastry cream into a 9 by 13-inch glass dish. Layer the cookies, bananas, and pastry cream in the bowl, ending with the pastry cream. Cover tightly and refrigerate until chilled, at least 4 hours or overnight. Just before serving, spread the whipped cream over the top of the pudding and sprinkle with the chocolate shavings.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Rotisserie Chicken with Black Pepper Vinegar Sauce

Black Pepper Vinegar Sauce:
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
3 tablespoons clover honey
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/3 cup canola oil
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 teaspoons sweet paprika
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
One 4 pound whole chicken, excess fat trimmed, rinsed and patted dry
2 tablespoons canola oil

For the sauce: Whisk together the mustard, vinegar, honey, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt and 1 tablespoon pepper in a medium bowl. Combine the canola and olive oil, then slowly add to the mustard mixture and whisk until emulsified. Let sit at room temperature while you prepare the chicken. The sauce can be made 2 days in advance and stored, covered, in the refrigerator. Bring to room temperature before serving.

For the chicken: Set up the rotisserie according to the manufacturer's directions. Combine the sugar, paprika, 1 1/2 tablespoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper in a small bowl. Brush the chicken with the oil and rub with the spice mixture.

Thread the chicken onto the rotisserie and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted into the breast registers 165 degrees F, about 1 hour 45 minutes. Remove from the rotisserie, brush liberally with some of the sauce, loosely tent with foil and let rest 15 minutes before slicing. Serve with the sauce on the side.


Texas-Style Potato Salad with Mustard and Pickled Red Onions

1 1/2 cups red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon mustard seeds
Kosher salt
1 small red onion, halved and thinly sliced
2 1/2 pounds new red potatoes
6 hard-cooked eggs, coarsely chopped
1 roasted red pepper, finely diced
1 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons whole-grain mustard
Freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley or cilantro

Bring the vinegar, sugar, mustard seeds and 1 tablespoon salt to a boil in a small saucepan and cook until the sugar and salt dissolves, about 1 minute. Transfer to a small bowl and let cool for 10 minutes. Add the onions and stir to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour and up to 24 hours. Drain the onions through a strainer into a bowl and reserve the pickling liquid.

Put the potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water by 2 inches and add 2 tablespoons salt. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until a knife inserted into the center of the potatoes meets with no resistance. Drain the potatoes well, let cool slightly (but not all the way) and slice into 1/2-inch thick slices.

Transfer the warm potatoes to a large bowl. Add the eggs, pickled onions and red peppers. Whisk together the mayonnaise, mustards, a few tablespoons of the pickling liquid and season with salt and pepper. Add the dressing and parsley to the warm potatoes and gently mix to combine; season with salt and pepper. Serve at room temperature or cover tightly and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and serve chilled.

Honey-Rum Pinto Beans with Burnt Ends

2 tablespoons canola oil
8 ounces double-smoked slab bacon, cut into small dice
1 medium carrot, grated on the large holes of a box grater
1 medium Spanish onion, cut into small dice
3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
Two 15-ounce cans pinto beans, drained, rinsed well and drained again
2 cups Bobby Flay's Mesa Barbecue Sauce or your favorite BBQ sauce
1 to 2 cups homemade chicken stock or low-sodium canned broth, plus more if needed
1/4 cup clover honey
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
A few cups burnt ends from Smoked, Spice Rubbed, Texas-Style Brisket
Handful torn fresh parsley leaves

Put the canola oil and bacon in a medium cast-iron or enamel coated cast-iron Dutch oven over medium heat. Cook until crisp. Add the carrots and onions to the pan and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook, about 1 minute. Add the beans, barbecue sauce, 1 cup stock, honey and brown sugar and mix gently to combine; season with salt and pepper. Cover and simmer, about 20 minutes. Check to see if the mixture is dry, and if it is, add a little more stock. Continue simmering until slightly thickened, about 15 minutes. Stir in the burnt ends. Garnish the top with the parsley and let sit 10 minutes before serving.

Smoked, Spice Rubbed, Texas-Style Brisket:
3 tablespoons ancho chile powder
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon allspice, ground
1 tablespoon celery seeds
1 tablespoon coriander seeds, ground
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon mustard seeds, ground
1 tablespoon dried oregano
1 tablespoon smoked Spanish paprika
1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
One 8 to 10 pound brisket, untrimmed
3 cups oak or pecan wood chips, or 6 big chunks, soaked in cold water for at least 1 hour and up to 4 hours
2 cups apple juice (in a spray bottle)

Mix together all the spices in a bowl. Liberally rub the entire brisket with the spices, wrap tightly in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours. Remove the brisket from the refrigerator 1 hour before beginning the smoking process to take the chill off, and remove the plastic wrap.

Get your smoker running at 225 degrees F with hardwood charcoal and a few handfuls of soaked wood chips. This temperature should be maintained throughout the entire smoke. (If you are using a grill: Set up the grill for indirect heat, banking the coals on one side of the grill and scattering the wood chips on top. Maintain the temperature at 225 degrees throughout the smoking process, adding chips as necessary until you wrap the brisket in foil.)

Place the brisket fat-side up on your smoker grate and close it up for the long smoke.

Open your barbecue smoker every hour or 2 and spray the brisket liberally with apple juice to help keep the meat from drying out. Also keep apple juice in the water pan if you are using a water smoker.

When the internal temperature reaches 165 to 170 degrees, after about 4 hours, wrap the brisket in aluminum foil and continue to cook for another 3 1/2 to 4 1/2 hours. This little trick is a big help in getting the meat tender, especially for beginners. Figure that a brisket smoked at around 200 degrees will take about 1 1/2 hours per pound. The brisket is done when the internal temperature reaches 185 degrees F. Remove and let rest 20 minutes before slicing. Remove the foil from the brisket over a large pan or disposable pan and reserve the liquid. Cut off the brisket points and reserve for Honey-Rum Baked Pinto Beans with Burnt Ends.


Monday, August 29, 2011

Steamed Mussels with Fennel and Ouzo

2 pounds cultivated mussels, scrubbed and debearded
2 shallots, finely chopped
4 garlic cloves, finely chopped
1/2 bulb fennel, trimmed, cored and thinly sliced
1 ripe beefsteak tomato, diced
1 cup white wine
1/4 cup ouzo
3/4 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup fresh basil leaves, torn
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Grilled bread, for serving

Heat olive oil in a large pot over high heat on the grates of the grill. Stir in shallots and garlic and cook until tender. Stir in fennel and tomato, and continue cooking about 5 minutes. Add white wine and ouzo and reduce by half. Add the heavy cream and bring to a simmer. Stir in mussels, 1/2 the basil and season with salt and pepper. Cover the pan and cook until the mussels are open, discarding any that do not. Stir in the remaining basil and serve in large bowls with grilled bread.


Blackberry-White Chocolate Fool with Toasted Hazelnuts

4 cups fresh blackberries
1/4 cup sugar, plus 3 tablespoons
1/4 cup cassis
1 1/2 cups very cold heavy cream
3 ounces white chocolate, melted
1/4 cup hazelnuts, toasted and chopped
Mint leaves, for garnish

Place berries in a large bowl. Add 1/4 cup sugar and 2 tablespoons cassis, stir well, and let sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Remove half of the berries and mash with fork until pureed. Strain the mixture into a bowl.

Whip heavy cream, 3 tablespoons sugar, and 2 tablespoons cassis in a large bowl until stiff peaks form. Fold in the white chocolate and strained puree and chill for 1 hour.

Layer goblets with berry-cream mixture and whole macerated berries. Sprinkle with chopped hazelnuts and garnish with mint.

Monday, August 15, 2011

New York Strip with Blue Cheese, Vidalia Onion Jam and Warm Potato Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette

Onion Jam:
2 tablespoons bacon drippings
3 Vidalia onions, peeled, halved, sliced 1/4-inch thick
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 jalapeno chile, finely diced
1/2 cup red wine
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons creme de cassis
2 tablespoons grenadine
Honey, to taste
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Heat grill to high. Heat a cast iron skillet until hot, but not smoking. Add the drippings, heat, and then the onions, garlic, jalapeno, wine, vinegar, cassis, grenadine and salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the liquid mixture is thickened and jam-like, about 20 minutes. Taste and season with honey, salt and pepper. Stir in the parsley, transfer to a bowl and let cool to room temperature.

Warm Potato Salad with Mustard Vinaigrette:
2 1/2 pounds red new potatoes
1/2 pound slab bacon, cut into lardons and cooked until golden brown and crisp, 2 tablespoons drippings reserved
1/4 cup red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon honey
2 cloves chopped garlic
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 to 1/3 cup olive oil
2 tablespoons roughly chopped basil leaves
2 tablespoons roughly chopped flat-leaf parsley
Put the potatoes in a large saucepan, cover with cold water and season with 1 tablespoon kosher salt. Bring to a boil and cook until tender when pierced with a knife. Drain, let cool for a few minutes and quarter

While the potatoes are cooking, whisk together the drippings, vinegar, mustard, honey, garlic, salt and pepper. Slowly whisk in the olive oil, and then stir in the chopped basil and parsley.

Add the warm potatoes and the bacon to the vinaigrette and gently fold to combine. Serve with the steak.

Grilled NY Strip:
2 tablespoons kosher salt
1 tablespoon coarsely ground black pepper
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
Canola oil
4 NY Strip steaks (12-ounces each) removed from the refrigerator 20 minutes before grilling
3/4 pound wedge blue cheese (recommended: Cabrales), room temperature
2 to 3 tablespoons heavy cream
Handful parsley sprigs
Heat the grill to high. Mix together the salt, pepper and thyme in a small bowl. Brush the steaks with oil on both sides and season with the salt mixture. Grill steaks until golden brown and slightly charred on both sides and cooked to medium-rare doneness.

Just before the steaks are done, use a fork to mash the cheese with some of the cream, so that it is chunky but a bit creamy. Mound some on each steak, and let melt very briefly, so the steaks don't overcook. Remove to a platter and let rest 5 minutes before serving. Top with parsley sprigs and serve.


Blackberry Shakes

1 pint fresh blackberries
2 to 4 tablespoons sugar (depending on berries sweetness)
1 pint vanilla ice cream
12 ounces pomegranate juice
1 cup milk

Combine all but a few blackberries and sugar in a small saucepan and cook over high heat until the sugar has melted and the berries are soft and just starting to break down.

Put the cooked berries, the ice cream, pomegranate juice and milk in a blender and puree until thick and creamy. Pour into tall glasses and garnish each glass with a few berries.


Friday, August 5, 2011

Shrimp 2 Ways: Soy Sauce-Grilled Shrimp with Spinach Salad and New-Style Scampi

1/4 cup soy sauce
2 limes, juiced
2 teaspoons honey
2-inch piece fresh ginger, finely grated
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup canola oil, plus more for brushing
For Soy Sauce-Grilled Shrimp with Spinach Salad:
12 ounces large (21-24) shrimp, peeled, tail-on, and deveined
1/2 recipe base
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

Spinach Salad:
1/4 cup rice vinegar
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons canola oil
1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
2 green onions, thinly sliced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
8 ounces baby spinach
1/2 cup chopped salted peanuts

For New Style Scampi:
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1/2 recipe base
2 limes
Canola oil, for brushing
12 ounces large (21-24) shrimp, peeled, tail-on, and deveined
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped cilantro leaves

For Soy-Sauce Grilled Shrimp:

Whisk the soy, lime juice, honey, ginger, garlic and canola oil in a medium bowl until combined. Transfer half to a food processor fitted with the blade attachment and set aside. Add the shrimp to the marinade in the bowl and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for 15 minutes.

While the shrimp marinates, whisk together the rice vinegar, soy sauce, canola and sesame oils, scallion and cilantro in a small bowl.

Heat the grill to high. Remove the shrimp from the marinade, brush with canola oil, and season with salt and pepper. Skewer the shrimp and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, until just cooked through.

Toss the spinach with some of the vinaigrette and mound in the center of a serving platter. Arrange shrimp around spinach and spoon over more of the dressing. Scatter the peanuts over the salad and shrimp.

For the New-Style Scampi:

Add the butter and red pepper flakes to the marinade in the food processor, and pulse until combined. Scrape the mixture into a small saucepan and put on the grill just to melt the butter.

Trim the ends from the limes and halve. Brush with canola oil, season with salt and pepper, and grill, flesh side down, until marked and slightly softened, 4 to 5 minutes.

Skewer the remaining shrimp, brush with canola oil, and season with salt and pepper. Grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side, until just cooked through. Slide the shrimp from the skewers into a shallow bowl, pour over some butter sauce, and toss to coat. Scatter the cilantro over the top, and arrange the grilled limes around the shrimp.


Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Bobby Flay's Fra Diavolo Jambalaya

2 red bell peppers
4 plum tomatoes, halved
5 cloves garlic, peeled, plus 3 cloves, thinly sliced
6 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 to 2 tablespoons chipotle puree, depending on how spicy you like it
12 ounces Spanish style chorizo, sliced in 1/4-inch thick slices
1 large Spanish onion, finely chopped
3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 cups long-grain white rice
1/2 cup vodka
2 to 3 cups lobster stock
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh oregano leaves
1 pound cultivated mussels, scrubbed
2 steamed lobsters (1 1/2 pounds each) meat removed
1 pound jumbo lump crabmeat
3 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves
1/4 cup coarsely chopped fresh parsley leaves
1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Place the peppers, tomatoes and 5 garlic cloves on a baking sheet, drizzle with 3 tablespoons of the oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast until the peppers and tomatoes are slightly charred and the garlic is golden brown. Transfer to a food processor with the chipotle puree and process until smooth; scrape into a bowl.

Heat a large saute pan over medium heat. Add the chorizo and cook until golden brown on both sides. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels.

Heat the remaining 3 tablespoons of oil in a Dutch oven over high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft. Add the sliced garlic and cook until lightly golden brown. Add the red pepper flakes and cook for 20 seconds. Stir in the rice and cook for 2 minutes.

Add the vodka and cook until reduced. Add the tomato/pepper puree and enough stock to cover, season with salt and bring to a boil. Add the chorizo and oregano, cover and cook for 10 minutes. Lift the lid, add the mussels, cover again and cook until the mussels have opened, discarding any that do not, and the rice is al dente and all the liquid is absorbed. Remove from the heat and let sit 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork and stir in the lobster meat and crabmeat, fresh basil, parsley and green onions.


Saturday, June 11, 2011

Miami Burger

1 pound ground chuck (80 percent lean) or ground turkey (90 percent lean)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 1/2 tablespoons canola oil
1/2 cup mayonnaise
4 cloves roasted garlic, mashed
4 hamburger buns, split
1/4 cup Dijon mustard
8 thin slices Swiss cheese
4 thin slices smoked ham
2 dill pickles, sliced into 1/4-inch-thick slices

Divide the meat into 4 equal portions (about 6 ounces each). Form each portion loosely into a 3/4-inch-thick burger and make a deep depression in the center with your thumb. Season both sides of each burger with salt and pepper. Cook the burgers, using the oil. Remove the burgers to a plate.

Combine the mayonnaise and roasted garlic in a small bowl and season with salt and pepper to taste. Spread both sides of each bun with the mayonnaise and the mustard. Place a slice of cheese on each bun bottom, place a burger on top, and then top the burger with a slice of ham, another slice of cheese, and some pickle slices. Cover with the bun tops.

Cook the burgers on a sandwich press or wrap the burgers in aluminum foil and cook in a hot skillet over high heat (put a heavy skillet on top of the burgers to press them) until golden brown and the cheese has melted, about 1 1/2 minutes per side. Serve immediately.


Hamburgers on FoodistaHamburgers

Monday, June 6, 2011

Bolo Salad with Chorizo, Cabrales Blue Cheese, and Tomatoes

1/2-pound chorizo sausage, sliced 1/4-inch thick
4 cups mixed greens, rinsed well and dried
1/2 cup julienned sun-dried tomatoes
Sherry Vinaigrette, recipe follows
Salt and pepper
4 ounces Cabrales blue cheese
Croutons, recipe follows

Heat a medium skillet over high heat, add the chorizo, and cook until golden brown. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels.

Place the greens and tomatoes in a large bowl and toss with half of the vinaigrette. Season with salt and pepper, to taste, and divide among 4 large plates.

Spread the blue cheese on the croutons. Scatter the chorizo over the salads and garnish each plate with remaining vinaigrette and 2 croutons.

Sherry Vinaigrette:

3 tablespoons aged sherry vinegar

2 teaspoons Dijon mustard

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup pure olive oil

Whisk together vinegar, mustard, and salt and pepper in a small bowl. Slowly whisk in the oil until emulsified.


8 (1/2-inch thick) slices French baguette

3 tablespoons olive oil

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Brush the bread with the oil and arrange on a baking sheet. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and bake until lightly browned on both sides, about 7 minutes. Let cool.


Chorizo on FoodistaChorizo

Monday, May 30, 2011

Grilled Clams on the Half Shell with Bacon, Garlic, and Hot Pepper

32 littleneck clams on the half shell
1/4-pound bacon, finely diced
6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/2 teaspoon hot pepper flakes
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
1/2 cup fresh bread crumbs
Freshly ground black pepper

Preheat grill to high.

Place a medium saute pan over medium-high heat, add the bacon and cook until lightly golden brown. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and continue cooking until the bacon is crisp. Remove from the heat, stir in the olive oil, parsley, and bread crumbs and season with black pepper, to taste.

Top clams with bacon mixture and place on the grill. Grill for about 1 minute or until just cooked through. Serve immediately.


Friday, May 20, 2011

Chicken Cobb Burger

For the burgers:
8 (1/2- thick) strips bacon
1 1/2 pounds ground chicken, 90 percent lean
2 tablespoons canola oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup crumbled blue cheese
4 burger buns, split
1 large ripe beefsteak tomato, cut into 4 slices
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted and cut into 8 slices
For the vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
1/4 teaspoon sugar
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 cup finely shredded romaine lettuce

For the burgers:
Heat the grill to medium.

Place the strips of bacon on the grill (lay them across the grate so they don't fall through) and grill for 3 to 4 minutes on each side, until golden brown and slightly crispy. Remove the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels. Increase the heat of the grill to high.

Form the meat into 4 (8-ounce) burgers, brush with the oil and season with salt and pepper on both sides. Grill the burgers until golden brown on both sides and cooked completely through, about 5 minutes per side. Top the burgers with the blue cheese, close the cover, and continue cooking until the cheese begins to melt, about 1 minute longer.

Place the burgers on the bottom half of each bun and top with a slice of tomato, 2 slices of avocado, 2 slices of bacon and some of the dressed romaine. Cover each burger with the bun tops and serve.

For the vinaigrette:
Whisk together the vinegar, lemon juice, mustard, Worcestershire, garlic, sugar, salt, pepper and oil in a small bowl. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before using to allow the flavors to meld.

Just before assembling the burgers, place the romaine in a medium bowl and toss with the vinaigrette


Monday, May 16, 2011

Grilled Chicken Wings with Spicy Chipotle Hot Sauce and Blue Cheese-Yogurt Dipping Sauce

46 chicken wings
Vegetable oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Chipotle Hot Sauce, recipe follows
Blue Cheese-Yogurt Dip, recipe follows

Heat grill to high. Toss wings in a few tablespoons of oil and season with salt and pepper. Place on the grill in single layers and grill until golden brown on both sides and just cooked through, about 4 to 5 minutes per side.

Chipotle Hot Sauce:

1 1/2 cups red wine vinegar
3 tablespoons Dijon mustard
2 to 3 tablespoons chipotle pepper puree (depending on how spicy you like it)
3 tablespoons honey
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 stick unsalted butter, cut into pieces
2 tablespoons ancho chile powder
Whisk together the vinegar, Dijon mustard, chipotle puree, honey, and oil in a medium bowl. Season with salt and pepper, to taste.

Melt butter in a large skillet or a large pot on the grates of the grill. Add the hot sauce mixture and bring to a boil. Whisk in the ancho chile powder and season with salt, to taste. Add the wings and cook, stirring, for 2 to 3 minutes. Serve with Blue Cheese-Yogurt Dip,

Blue Cheese-Yogurt Dip:

1 pint thick Greek yogurt
3/4 cup crumbled domestic blue cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped red onion
3 tablespoons finely sliced scallions
Salt and freshly ground pepper
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes before serving.


Chicken Wings on FoodistaChicken Wings

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Grilled Chicken Paillard with Lemon and Black Pepper and Arugula-Tomato Salad

1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 small shallot, chopped
1/4 cup pure olive oil
1/4 teaspoon coarsely ground fresh black pepper
4 boneless, skinless, chicken breasts, pounded thinly
1/2 pound arugula
2 ripe beefsteak tomatoes, diced
1 small red onion, peeled, halved and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus additional for garnish
Lemon halves, for garnish

Whisk together lemon juice, shallot, olive oil and black pepper in a large baking dish. Add the chicken, turn to coat and marinate in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Preheat grill to high. Remove chicken from marinade, season with salt on both sides and grill for 2 to 3 minutes per side or until golden brown and just cooked through.

Combine arugula, tomatoes and onions in a large bowl, toss with the vinegar and oil and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Place each paillard on a large plate, drizzle with extra-virgin olive oil and top with some of the arugula-tomato salad. Garnish with lemon halves.


Chicken Breast on FoodistaChicken Breast

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

White Chocolate Rice Pudding with Cherries Jubilee and Sliced Almonds

4 1/2 cups whole milk
2/3 cup long-grain white rice
2/3 cup sugar
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons whipping cream
4 ounces good-quality white chocolate (recommended: Lindt or Valrhona), chopped
1 tablespoon grated orange zest
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
Warm Cherry Sauce, recipe follows
Whipped cream, for garnish, optional
1/4 cup slivered almonds, toasted, for garnish

Combine first 5 ingredients in a heavy, large saucepan. Cook over medium-low heat until mixture thickens and rice is very tender, stirring occasionally, about 1 hour.

Reduce heat to low. Whisk egg yolks and cream together in a small bowl. Gradually whisk 1/2 cup rice mixture into egg mixture; return mixture to the saucepan and cook for 2 minutes, stirring constantly; do not let boil. Remove from the heat. Add white chocolate and stir until melted. Stir in the orange zest and cinnamon. Transfer pudding to a large bowl, cover, and chill until cold. Serve in bowls or large goblets with Warm Cherry Sauce, whipped cream, and toasted almonds on top, or layer in parfait glasses.

Warm Cherry Sauce:
1 cup cherry preserves
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3 tablespoons kirsch (cherry brandy)


Rice Pudding on FoodistaRice Pudding

Monday, May 9, 2011

Skirt Steak Tacos with Roasted Tomato Salsa

8 (6-inch) flour tortillas
1 1/2 pounds skirt steak
2 tablespoons canola oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 head romaine lettuce, thinly shredded
1 medium red onion, thinly sliced
1 ripe avocado, peeled, pitted, halved and diced
Grilled Tomato Salsa, recipe follows
8 ounces sour cream

Heat grill to high.

Wrap tortillas in aluminum foil and on the top rack of the grill while the steak is grilling.

Heat grill pan over high heat. Brush steak with oil and season with salt and pepper on both sides. Grill on one side until golden brown and slightly charred, about 3 to 4 minutes. Turn the steak over and cook to medium-rare doneness, about 3 to 4 minutes longer. Let rest 5 minutes then slice against the grain into 1/4-inch thick slices.

Fill each tortilla with some lettuce, 3 to 4 pieces of meat, onion, grilled tomato salsa, sour cream, and avocado.

Grilled Tomato Salsa:
2 tablespoons canola oil, plus more for brushing tomatoes
2 serrano chiles
1 small red onion, coarsely chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled
6 plum tomatoes, halved and seeded
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 limes, juiced
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Heat grill to high.

Heat oil in a small saute pan and saute the chiles, onion, and garlic until soft.

Brush tomatoes with oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill on both sides until slightly charred and soft.

Transfer tomatoes and serrano mixture to a food processor; add the lime juice and salt and pepper and process until smooth. Add the cilantro and pulse a few times (there should be flecks of cilantro in the salsa.) Transfer to a bowl.


Skirt Steak on FoodistaSkirt Steak