I received a rice cooker for Christmas! I had to make some sort of chicken dish to serve with my perfectly cooked rice. 🙂
This comforting chicken curry was very thick and hearty. The recipe was adapted from Made in India: Recipes from an Indian Family Kitchen by Meera Sodha. I also included some of Sam Sifton’s adaptations from The New York Times.
The dollop of yogurt on top was essential. We also ate it with warm naan, roasted cauliflower and steamed spinach.
Yield: 6 to 8 servings
2 T unsalted butter or ghee
1 T neutral oil, like canola
1 tsp cumin seeds
2 cinnamon sticks, approximately 2 inches long
2 large white or yellow onions, peeled and finely chopped
1 2 1/2-inch piece of ginger, peeled with a spoon and grated or minced
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
2 green cayenne or jalapeño peppers, stemmed, seeded and minced (or 1 tsp chili powder)
kosher salt, to taste
3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons strained or puréed tomatoes (I used Pomi)
2 T tomato paste
1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/2 tsp ground turmeric
3 T whole-milk yogurt, plus 1 cup to serve with the meal
2 to 2 1/2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
3 T ground or slivered almonds
1 tsp garam masala
pinch ground cayenne pepper, or to taste
1 1/2 cups brown Basmati rice, rinsed and cooked per package directions
Melt the butter or ghee in the oil in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat, and when it is hot and shimmering, add the cumin seeds and cinnamon sticks. Cook for a minute or two, stirring often, to intensify their flavors.
Add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they are golden, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, put the ginger, garlic and chilies into a mortar and pestle with a pinch of salt; smash them together into a coarse paste. (You can also do this on a cutting board, with a knife.) (I had a bit of a struggle with this! May try the cutting board method next time.)
Add the paste to the onions, and cook gently for 2 minutes or so, then pour in the tomatoes, and stir. Allow to cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, until the mixture thickens.
Add the tomato paste, ground cumin, ground turmeric and 1/2 teaspoon of salt; stir to combine.
Add the yogurt slowly to the mixture, using a wooden spoon to whisk it into the sauce. It may be quite thick. When it begins to bubble, add the chicken.
Lower the heat, put the lid on the Dutch oven and allow the curry to cook gently for 30 minutes or so, or until the chicken is cooked through.
Add the almonds and the garam masala, along with a pinch of cayenne, and cook for 5 minutes more or so. Taste and adjust seasoning, as needed.
Serve with basmati rice and/or naan, and the additional yogurt for topping at the table.
Although I typically prefer vegetarian Ethiopian dishes, I felt compelled to try this chicken dish after seeing it on Milk Street. This chicken and red onion stew, Doro Wat, is the national dish of Ethiopia. I made Ethiopian Stewed Collard Greens, Gomen Wat, with my CSA collards as an accompaniment.
The recipe was adapted from a home cook, Tigist Chane in Addis Ababa, via 177MilkStreet.com, contributed by Courtney Hill. Ghee is substituted for Ethiopian fermented butter.
Instead of injera, Ethiopian flatbread, I served the stew over brown Basmati rice with warm naan on the side. The original recipe notes that it is important to make your own spice blend, berbere, to control the amount of heat in the finished dish. We omitted the optional hard-cooked egg garnish.
Yield: Serves 4 to 6
For the Berbere Spice Blend:
2 T smoked sweet paprika
1 T sweet paprika
1/2 to 1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp ground ginger
1 tsp onion powder
1 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp freshly ground cardamom
1/2 tsp dried basil, ground or crushed into a powder
1/4 tsp ground cumin
Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk to combine. Set aside.
For the Chicken Stew:
5 T ghee, divided
3 large red onions (about 2 pounds), finely chopped in a food processor
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
about 5 T Berbere spice blend (see above) (I used the entirety of the spice blend)
12 medium to large garlic cloves, minced in a food processor
2 to 2 1/2 pounds boneless skinless chicken thighs, trimmed and halved
3 scallions, thinly sliced on a diagonal
1 jalapeño or Fresno chili, stemmed, seeded (if desired), and finely chopped, optional
2-3 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and sliced, optional (I omitted the eggs)
lemon wedges, to serve, optional
brown Basmati rice, for serving, optional
Injera or naan, for serving, optional
In a large Dutch oven over medium-high, heat 2 tablespoons of the ghee until shimmering. (I used a large, wide and shallow enameled cast iron pot.)
Add the onions and 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt, then cook, stirring occasionally and reducing the heat if the onions begin to brown before they soften, until lightly browned and completely softened, 10 to 15 minutes.
Stir in the remaining 3 tablespoons ghee, the berbere spice blend and 3/4 cup water.
Stir in the garlic, followed by the chicken.
Reduce to medium-low, cover and cook at a simmer, stirring occasionally, until a skewer inserted into the chicken meets no resistance, about 30 minutes.
Uncover, increase to medium-high and cook, stirring and scraping along the bottom of the pot, until the stew is thickened and a wooden spoon leaves a brief trail when drawn through the sauce, 5 to 10 minutes.
Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Serve topped with the scallions, chilies (if using) and sliced eggs (if using); serve with lemon wedges on the side, as desired. (I served it over brown rice with warm naan on the side.)
My daughter was absolutely obsessed with making cowboy caviar this summer. This recipe made a large volume. The leftovers were perfect to have available to eat as a side, a dip, or over salad greens. Everyone loved it.
This version was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Margaux Laskey. We ate it with tortilla chips and grilled chicken sausages for dinner. 🙂 I served the diced mango as an additional topping on the side to please everyone in my crowd.
Yield: 8 cups
5 T olive oil
4 T freshly squeezed lime juice or red wine vinegar
3 to 4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp granulated sugar
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 beefsteak tomato, seeded, cored, and diced plus 1/2 cup cherry tomatoes, halved (or any combination of tomatoes resulting about 1 cup diced)
1/2 red onion, finely diced
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, drained and rinsed
1 (15-ounce) can pinto beans or black-eyed peas, drained and rinsed
1 1/2 cups fresh corn kernels (from about 2 to 4 cobs) or thawed, drained frozen sweet corn (about 8 ounces)(I used kernels from 3 ears of corn)
1 red, orange, or yellow bell pepper, seeded and finely diced
1 jalapeño, seeded and finely diced
1/2 cup chopped cilantro leaves and tender stems, plus more for garnish, if desired
1 avocado, diced, optional
4 oz feta cheese, crumbled, optional
1 mango, diced, optional
1-2 scallions, white and green parts, chopped, for garnish, optional
tortilla chips, for serving
Make the dressing: In a medium bowl, whisk the olive oil, vinegar, garlic, sugar, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper to combine.
Cut the corn kernels off the cob directly into the bowl with the dressing.
Add the tomatoes, red onion, black beans, pinto/black-eyed peas, bell pepper, jalapeño and cilantro. Toss to combine and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours before serving.
To serve, toss well and season to taste. Add the diced avocado, crumbled feta, and diced mango, if using.
Transfer to a serving dish. Sprinkle with scallions and serve with tortilla chips. (Alternatively, the avocado can also be served over the top.)
We ate this wonderful one-pot dish during the Super Bowl this year. The chili and biscuit dough can be made in advance, even several hours in advance, so it was perfect for the occasion. It also complemented our mandatory game day guacamole.
The recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Melissa Clark. I modified the proportions to serve 8 people- so that we would have leftovers! 😉 I reheated the chili, topped it with the biscuit dough and placed it in the oven just before serving. Great.
Yield: Serves 8
For the Cornmeal Biscuits:
1 cup/120 grams all-purpose flour
2/3 cup/92 grams fine yellow cornmeal
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp fine sea salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
8 T/113 grams cold, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
3/4 cup/177 ml buttermilk or plain whole-milk yogurt
1 scallion, thinly sliced, plus more for serving
milk, more buttermilk, or yogurt, for finishing
3+ tablespoons grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino-Romano, for finishing
For the Turkey Chili:
3 T extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 to 1 3/4 pounds ground turkey
1 very large or 2 medium yellow onions, diced
1-2 jalapeños, seeded (if desired) and diced (I used 1 1/2 jalapeños)
6 garlic cloves, finely grated, passed through a press or minced
1 1/2 T chili powder
2 1/4 teaspoons fine sea salt, plus more to taste, divided
1 1/2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes with juices (I used San Marzano)
3 (15-ounce) cans pinto or black beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves and tender stems, plus more for garnish
sour cream or Greek yogurt, for serving, optional
sliced or pickled jalapeños, for serving, optional
To Prepare the Biscuit Dough:
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, cornmeal, baking powder, sugar, salt and baking soda.
Using a pastry cutter (or your hands), cut (or rub) in the butter until mixture resembles rolled oats.
Fold in the buttermilk and scallion slices.
Gently stir mixture until it comes together in a moist, sticky mass. Cover bowl and refrigerate until ready to use. (This can be done a day in advance.)
Heat oven to 425 degrees, preferably on convection.
To Prepare the Turkey Chili:
In a large ovenproof skillet, heat oil over medium-high heat until it thins. (I used an enameled cast iron pan. A cast iron skillet would also be great.)
Stir in turkey and cook, breaking up meat with a wooden spoon, until it’s no longer pink with some browned bits, about 7 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium, and add onion and jalapeño, and cook until translucent and tender, about 5 minutes.
Stir in garlic, chili powder, 1 1/2 teaspoons salt, oregano, cumin, and pepper, and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute longer.
Using kitchen shears (or your hands), break up tomatoes and add them, along with the juices, to the pan. (I cut the tomatoes while they are still in the can.)
Add beans and remaining 3/4 teaspoons salt, and scrape up any brown bits on the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until slightly thickened, 3 to 5 minutes. If the mixture seems very dry, add a few tablespoons water. It should be juicy-looking but not wet.
Remove from heat and stir in cilantro. Taste and add more salt, if needed.
To Finish the Dish:
Divide biscuit dough into 8 equal balls. Use your palm to flatten each ball into a 3/4-inch-thick disk. Arrange on top of turkey chili.
Brush biscuits lightly with buttermilk, and sprinkle grated cheese on top.
Transfer skillet to oven and cook until biscuits are golden at the edges, 20 to 30 minutes. (I cooked mine for 22 minutes on convection.)
Let cool for 10 minutes before serving. Garnish with additional cilantro and scallions, if desired. Serve with sour cream and sliced or pickled jalapeños.
My kids love the Butternut Squash Mac and Cheese from Trader Joe’s. (It sells out daily- so they are clearly not alone!) This vegetarian comfort food dish seemed reminiscent enough to be a crowd-pleaser. 😉 I liked that it incorporated leafy greens too.
This recipe was adapted from The New York Times, contributed by Yasmin Fahr. I modified the method and proportions. I also added a poblano chile, red onion, garlic, and cilantro. Nice.
Yield: Serves 6
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium or 1/2 large red onion, diced
1 poblano chile, seeded, ribbed, and diced, divided (or 1 jalapeño, sliced into rounds)
6 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 medium butternut squash (about 2 1/2 pounds), peeled, seeds removed and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (about 6 cups)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes, plus more to taste
1 pound rigatoni, penne, or other tubular pasta
3/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan (I used Parmigiano-Reggiano), divided
4 packed cups greens (I used 2 cups turnip greens (sliced into 1-inch ribbons) and 2 cups baby spinach)
8 oz (1/2 pound) fresh mozzarella, torn into bite-size chunks
1/3 cup cilantro or flat-leaf parsley and tender stems, roughly chopped, for garnish
Bring a large covered pot of heavily salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until not quite al dente, 3 to 4 minutes less than the package instructions. (It should be a little too firm to the bite.) Reserve 2 cups of the pasta water and drain. Set aside.
Meanwhile, in a 12-inch ovenproof skillet with high sides and a tight-fitting lid (or a Dutch oven), heat the oil over medium-high until shimmering. (I used a large and wide enameled cast iron pan.)
Add the diced onion and half of the diced poblano chile, season with salt, and cook until beginning to soften, about 2 minutes.
Add the sliced garlic and continue to cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.
Add the cubed squash and season with salt, cumin, and red-pepper flakes. Cook, stirring every minute, until squash becomes browned in spots and feels just tender, 6 to 8 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oven to 400 degrees. (I set my oven to convection.)
When the squash is just tender, add 1 cup of the reserved pasta water. Bring to an active simmer, cover and cook, stirring occasionally, until the squash is soft and easily mashable, 10 to 12 minutes.
Turn off the heat, then use the back of a wooden spoon to crush about half of the butternut squash and leave the rest chunky. Season the squash to taste, keeping in mind that salty Parmesan will be added soon.
Add the cooked pasta to the skillet along with the remaining 1 cup of reserved pasta water and 1/2 cup grated Parmesan. Stir vigorously to combine.
Stir in the greens one handful at a time until each addition wilts slightly.
Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan, the mozzarella, and the remaining diced poblano chile. Place in the oven and cook until the top is melted and browned in spots, 12 to 15 minutes.
After picking eight heaping quarts of beautiful strawberries, I had to try a couple of new strawberry cocktails. I must say that it is difficult to make a strawberry cocktail that I would prefer to my favorite Strawberry-Basil Martini and (close second) The Union Square Strawberry Cocktail. Thankfully, we had plenty of strawberries and beautiful evenings to be able to enjoy all of them! 🙂
Both of these cocktails are incredibly simple and quick to prepare. The first is a Strawberry Gin & Tonic- perfect because one of my favorite summer cocktails is a classic gin and tonic. The recipe is from hometoheather.com. The second is a Spicy Strawberry Margarita. My husband made it as a celebratory cocktail on my birthday. ❤ He garnished the rim of the glass with a mixture of coarse salt and chile powder. The recipe was adapted from vinepair.com, contributed by Natalie Migliarini. Tasty and refreshing.
Strawberry Gin & Tonic
Yield: 1 cocktail
1 shot gin
1 wedge lime
tonic water, to fill
1 mashed strawberry
lime wedge or slice, or strawberry, for garnish
Use a highball glass and fill about ¼ full with ice.
Pour the gin over the ice.
Add your mashed berry, squeeze the lime wedge and fill with tonic water.
Garnish with lime or strawberry and serve.
Spicy Strawberry Margarita:
Yield: 1 cocktail
1.5 ounces tequila
1 ounce of lime juice
1/2 serrano or jalapeño chile, seeded (if desired), chopped or sliced into rings
3 strawberries, chopped
1/2 ounce agave nectar
salt and/or Tajín or chile powder, for the rim
1 cup ice
Rim a rocks glass with salt and/or Tajín or chile powder.
Chop peppers and strawberries and add all ingredients into shaker, shaking to chill and combine.
Pour chilled mixture, including the ice, into rocks glass.
Annually, we treat ourselves to Southern shrimp and grits over Easter weekend. This year, I served the special dish using purple “unicorn” grits from Millers All Day in Charleston, South Carolina. Festive!
This version was topped with a spicy and garlicky roasted poblano-jalapeño sauce which had a terrific balance with the rich, cheesy grits. The shrimp was also cooked in garlic oil. It was a great variation to try for the garlic and sauce lovers in my house. 🙂 The recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Marc Meyer. I modified the method and proportions.
Yield: Serves 4
4 cups water
1/2 cup whole milk
1 cup stone-ground white grits (I used stone-ground unicorn grits)
2 ounces extra-sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded (1/2 cup)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 jalapeño chile
1 poblano chile
5 large garlic cloves, thickly sliced
5 T extra-virgin olive oil
2 T freshly squeezed orange juice (from 1/2 an orange)
freshly ground black pepper
1 pound shelled and deveined large shrimp, patted dry (I used 21-25 count per pound)
Place oven rack in the highest position and set to broil. Place the jalapeño and poblano chiles on a foil-lined rimmed baking sheet. Broil until blackened all over, about 3 minutes per side.
Remove from the oven and wrap in the foil. Allow to steam and cool for 10 minutes, then rub off the skins. Stem and seed the chiles.
In a large saucepan, bring the water to a boil with a pinch of salt. (I used an enameled cast iron pot.)
Whisk in the grits and cook over moderate heat, stirring often, until the grits are tender and very thick, about 15 minutes.
Stir in the milk, cheese, and butter. Season with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper. (I used about 1/2 tsp salt.) Cook for an additional 5 minutes, then keep warm.
In a small skillet, cook the garlic in the olive oil over moderate heat, stirring, until the garlic is softened and very lightly browned, about 3 to 5 minutes.
Using a slotted spoon, transfer the garlic to a blender. Add the chiles and the orange juice and puree until smooth. Add all but 2 tablespoons of the garlic oil and puree until creamy. Season the sauce with salt and pepper. (I used a Vitamix.)
Pat the shrimp dry and toss with the remaining 2 tablespoons of garlic oil. Season with coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Heat a very large skillet until very hot, about 2 minutes.
Add the shrimp in a single layer and cook until browned and just cooked through, about 45 seconds to 1 minute per side.
To serve, spoon the grits into bowls and top with sauce and shrimp. Serve additional sauce at the table.