This is a crowd-pleasing, lighter, stovetop upgrade to a classic lasagna. It was also less time consuming to prepare. I loved the brightness from the incorporation of fresh herbs.
The recipe was adapted from Bon Appétit, contributed by Shilpa Uskokovic. I modified the method and added garlic. The grated zucchini and panko in the meatballs made them very tender. Fabulous!
Yield: Serves 4 to 6 (5 in my house)
1 large zucchini (about 12 oz), finely grated (about 1½ cups)(I used a food processor)
1 1/2 cups panko
1 tsp dried oregano
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp paprika
6 T extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 tsp Diamond Crystal or 1 1/4 tsp Morton kosher salt, plus more, to taste
1 lb ground chicken
1/2 cup finely chopped dill, plus more for serving
1/2 cup finely chopped parsley
1 28 oz can whole, peeled tomatoes (I used San Marzano)
2 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
8 oz fresh whole milk ricotta
finely grated lemon zest from 1/2 a large lemon
10 oz lasagna noodles, broken into 2–3 pieces (do not use oven-ready noodles)(I used DeCecco)
grated Parmesan, for serving (I used Parmigiano-Reggiano)
Using a sturdy wooden spoon or rubber spatula, vigorously stir grated zucchini, panko, oregano, garlic powder, paprika, 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil, and kosher salt in a large bowl until combined and nearly paste-like. (I grated the zucchini medium-large because I used a food processor.)
Add ground chicken, chopped dill and parsley and mix until fully incorporated (you don’t need to worry about overmixing here; mixture will be soft). (I used a food processor to finely chop the fresh herbs.)
Heat 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil in a large Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium to medium-high. (I used a large enameled cast iron Dutch oven.)
Using a 3 tablespoon cookie scoop, portion out half of meat mixture (meatballs don’t need to be perfectly round; rustic-looking is good) and add directly to pot. (I did 2 batches of 8 meatballs.)
Cook, undisturbed, until well browned underneath, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Carefully turn meatballs over and cook until second side is golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes (it’s okay if meatballs still look misshapen).
Using a slotted spoon, transfer to a large plate.
Pour an additional 1 tablespoon of extra-virgin olive oil into pot and repeat process with remaining meat mixture. (the remaining 8 meatballs)
Return all meatballs to pot, the add canned tomatoes with juice, lightly crushing with your hands as you go, sliced garlic and shallot, and remaining 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil; season with salt.
Reduce heat to medium-low, cover pot, and cook meatballs and sauce, gently stirring occasionally (it’s okay if meatballs start to fall apart), until sauce is slightly thickened, 15–20 minutes. (After stirring halfway through the cooking time, I reduced the heat to low.)
Meanwhile, whisk together ricotta, grated lemon zest, and a large pinch of salt in small bowl until smooth; set aside.
Cook broken lasagna noodles in large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until just shy of al dente, about 3 minutes.
Using tongs, drop noodles into pot with sauce and cook, stirring gently, until sauce coats pasta.
Divide pasta among shallow bowls and spoon dollops of reserved lemony ricotta over each.
Top with dill and grated Parmesan, as desired.
Do ahead: Meatballs and sauce can be made 3 days ahead; let cool. Transfer to an airtight container; cover and chill. Lemony ricotta can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
This Thanksgiving, we branched out from our favorite wild mushroom gravy to try this roasted poblano version. It was incredible. Because we roasted a much smaller turkey and made less mashed potatoes, I plan to gobble up any leftover gravy as a dip with tortilla chips. 🙂 It would also be wonderful in tacos or as sauce in a pot pie.
This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Javier Cabral and Paola Brinseño González. I incorporated a shallot as well as the roasted turkey pan dripping and juices. I also reduced the salt. Next time I will roast the poblanos in advance. I am going to start making it year-round!
Yield: about 2 cups
2 large (3 ounce) poblano chilies
1 T unsalted butter
2 T roasted turkey pan fat (can substitute 2 T unsalted butter)
1 large shallot, finely diced
1 1/2 cups roasted turkey pan drippings plus vegetable, chicken, or turkey stock, divided
1 tablespoons all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons buttermilk
kosher salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Place chilies on an aluminum foil lined baking pan. Place under a broiler, rotating every 5 minutes, until skin is charred on all sides. (Alternatively, using kitchen tongs, hold 1 chile directly over a medium flame of a gas stovetop. Cook until skin is blackened, 4 to 6 minutes per side. Repeat with remaining chile.)
Wrap the blackened chilies in the aluminum foil to steam. (Alternatively, place chiles in a bowl, cover with plastic wrap.) Let steam for 10 minutes.
Rub off skin from chiles, removing as much of the blackened skin as you can. (Don’t worry if all of the skin doesn’t come off.) Remove and discard stems and seeds.
Finely dice the roasted chilies.
Melt 1 tablespoon butter in a medium skillet over medium-high. Add shallot and diced chiles. Cook until onion is soft, about 4 minutes.
Combine shallot mixture and 1/2 cup stock in a blender, and process until smooth, about 30 seconds. (I used a Vitamix.)
Place 2 tablespoons of fat from pan drippings (or 2 T butter) in same skillet over medium.
Whisk in flour, and reduce heat to low. Cook, whisking constantly, until mixture is golden brown, about 2 to 3 minutes.
Increase heat to medium and add shallot-chile puree and remaining 1 cup pan drippings with stock, and cook, whisking constantly, until thick enough to coat the back of a spoon, about 2 minutes.
Reduce heat to low; add buttermilk. Simmer gently to allow flavors to meld, about 2 minutes.
Season with salt and pepper, to taste.
Note: Poblano peppers can be roasted, peeled, and cut 2 days ahead.
This phyllo-crusted savory pie is packed with caramelized summer zucchini. It is a wonderful way to gobble up an abundance of fresh squash from the garden or your CSA share. 🙂 I loved that it was baked in a cast iron skillet too.
The recipe was adapted from thekitchn.com, contributed by Grace Elkus. We ate it for dinner with a green salad but it could also be served for a special brunch or lunch- an amazing summer meal.
After reading the printed version, I received multiple emails from The New York Times about this dish. Sam Sifton was over the moon about this recipe and the book, Toni Tipton-Martin’s Jubilee: Recipes from Two Centuries of African-American Cooking. He described the book as “excellent and invaluable” and noted that this was his favorite recipe in it. I had to try it.
I agreed with Sam Sifton. 🙂 Lemon-caper sauce is incredible! This wonderful dish was prepared very quickly and was packed with flavor. Tipton-Martin learned the sauce technique that elevates these smothered pork chops from restaurateur B. Smith.
I added additional flour to the sauce to make it more of a gravy. We used fresh bread to mop up all of the remaining sauce on our plates. I served the pork chops with sautéed spinach and roasted red and sweet potatoes on the side.
This recipe was adapted from Jubilee: Recipes from Two Centuries of African-American Cooking, via The New York Times, contributed by Sam Sifton. I slightly modified the proportions.
Yield: Serves 4 to 5
4bone-in pork chops (about 8 ounces each) (I used 5 boneless pork chops)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/2tsp dried thyme leaves
2 T olive oil
4 T unsalted butter, divided
1very small shallot, minced (about 1 tablespoon)
3garlic cloves, minced (about 1 teaspoon)
2 T all-purpose flour
1cup dry white wine
1 1/2cups chicken stock
2T drained capers
2 T minced fresh parsley, plus more for garnish
1tsp freshly grated lemon zest, plus 2 T freshly squeezed lemon juice
hot sauce, optional
Dry the chops with paper towels, and season aggressively with salt, pepper and the thyme.
Swirl the olive oil into a large skillet, and heat over medium until the oil begins to shimmer.
Add chops, and cook until well browned on each side and cooked through, about 5 minutes per side. Transfer chops to a plate, and cover to keep warm.
Drain most of the fat from the skillet, then melt 2 tablespoons of butter in it over medium heat until sizzling.
Add the shallot and garlic, and sauté until the aromatics soften, reducing the heat if necessary, about 1 minute.
Sprinkle in the flour, and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
Whisk in the wine and chicken stock, raise heat to high and bring the liquid to a boil, scraping up the browned bits on the bottom of the pan. Reduce heat to medium-high and cook, uncovered, until the liquid is reduced by half, 7 to 10 minutes.
Stir in the capers, parsley, lemon zest and juice and hot sauce to taste (if you’re using it)(I omitted it), and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes.
Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter until it’s melted and the sauce looks smooth.
Nestle the pork chops into the sauce, and allow them to warm up for a couple of minutes, then serve, pouring sauce over each pork chop to taste.
Wow. This was delicious. A real celebration of summer farmstand corn. My local farmstand happens to have absolutely wonderful bi-color corn which I used for this special chowder.
A fresh corn broth is made for the base of this soup. It incorporates the corn cobs, shiitake mushroom stems, herbs, as well as parmesan rinds. I think it really makes the finished dish extraordinary.
I adapted this recipe from Bon Appetit, contributed by Rick Martinez. I lightened the recipe by using half and half instead of heavy cream. I also used home-grown jalapeños instead of Fresno chiles and parsley instead of marjoram. I doubled the garlic too, of course. 😉 Fabulous!!
Yield: Serves 8
8 ears of corn
2 Parmesan rinds (about 4 ounces)
4 ounces shiitake mushrooms, stems removed and reserved, caps cut into ¼-inch pieces
2 sprigs thyme
1 bay leaf
5 T unsalted butter, room temperature, divided
freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup dry white wine
4 ounces thick-cut bacon, cut into ¼-inch pieces (I used 3 thick slices)
1 pound russet potatoes, peeled, cut into ½-inch pieces (I used 1 1/2 large potatoes)
3 shallots, thinly sliced
1 medium leek, white and pale-green parts only, quartered lengthwise, thinly sliced
4 garlic cloves, finely grated or minced
2 Fresno chiles or jalapeños, seeded, finely chopped
2 T all-purpose flour
2 cups heavy cream or half and half
1 T chopped marjoram or parsley, plus more for serving
oyster crackers, for serving, optional
Cut kernels from cobs and place in a large bowl. Reserve cobs.
Place cobs in a medium pot and add Parmesan rinds, if using, mushroom stems, thyme, bay leaf, 2 tsp. salt, and 8 cups water.
Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, stirring occasionally, until broth is fragrant and reduced by half, 40–50 minutes. Strain through a fine-mesh sieve into a medium bowl; discard solids and set broth aside.
Meanwhile, heat 4 T butter in a large heavy pot over medium-high.
Add corn kernels, season generously with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until corn is tender and juices have evaporated and browned on the bottom of the pot, 12–15 minutes. Reserve ½ cup corn for serving; transfer remaining corn to a medium bowl.
Add wine to pot and cook, scraping up browned bits, until liquid is syrupy, about 2 minutes. Scrape into bowl with remaining corn.
Heat remaining 1 T butter in same pot over medium and cook bacon until golden brown and fat has rendered, about 6 minutes.
Add potatoes, shallots, leek, garlic, and chopped mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables have softened but haven’t taken on any color, 12–15 minutes.
Add chiles and cook until fragrant and softened, about 3 minutes.
Stir in flour and cook until nutty and fragrant, about 1 minute.
Add reserved broth, bring to a boil, and cook, stirring occasionally, until potatoes are fork-tender, 10–15 minutes.
Add half and half (or cream) and corn mixture and cook, stirring, until chowder has thickened, 5–10 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in parley. Let sit 15 minutes before serving.
Divide chowder among bowls. Top with additional parsley, oyster crackers, and reserved ½ cup corn; season with pepper.
Note: To make this vegetarian, omit the bacon and replace with more shiitake mushrooms; sauté them until they’re golden brown.
I love the first batch of zucchini in my CSA share- and finding new ways to enjoy it. The spicy, creamy, lime dressing in this dish was absolutely delicious. We are huge cilantro fans in my house so the fact that this dish was loaded with one of our favorite herbs made this dish a winner.
This recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Kay Chun. I shaved the frozen goat cheese over the top, which was noted as the fancy chef tip in the original recipe. I think I would have preferred to have just crumbled cold (not frozen) goat cheese on top! Next time. 🙂
I’m bringing this festive summer side to share at Angie’s Fiesta Friday #128. My dish from Fiesta Friday #127 was a feature this week! Yay! Check it out and join the party.
3 ears of corn, shucked
1 pound small zucchini or summer squash, halved lengthwise (about 2 large)
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
freshly ground black pepper
1/2 pound orzo
1/4 cup mayonnaise
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon minced shallot (I used 1 medium shallot)
1/2 teaspoon guajillo or ancho chile powder
1 1/2 cups coarsely chopped cilantro
2 ounces fresh goat cheese, frozen for grating or refrigerated for crumbling
Light a gas grill or heat a grill pan.
In a 9 x 13-inch pyrex dish or large bowl, toss the corn and zucchini with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
Grill over moderate heat until charred and crisp-tender, about 10 minutes for the zucchini and 15 minutes for the corn.
Transfer to a cutting board and let cool. Cut the kernels off the corn cobs and coarsely chop the zucchini; set aside.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan of salted boiling water, cook the orzo until al dente. Rinse under cold water to cool. Drain well and spread the orzo out on a baking sheet; pat dry with paper towels.
In a large bowl, whisk the mayonnaise with the remaining 3 tablespoons of olive oil and the lime juice, shallot, chile powder and 1/2 cup of the cilantro; season with salt and pepper.
Add the orzo, corn, zucchini and the remaining chopped cilantro and mix well. Transfer to a platter or serving bowl.
Using a vegetable peeler, shave the frozen goat cheese all over the top and serve. (Alternatively, crumble cold goat cheese over the top.)
My husband has been saying that we really should incorporate more fish into our diet. I know that he’s probably right. So, I was very proud to serve not only one, but TWO fish dinners in one week. The first was a super quick and fresh pan-roasted fish dish. (I’ll share that in a separate post.) The second was this quick red curry. I thought it was just me, but we all decided that the fish overpowered an otherwise delicious dish. (I am open to another opinion though!) I made it again with my go-to protein, boneless, skinless chicken thighs, and it was a winner in my house. Maybe fish once a week is enough for us. 😉
This recipe was adapted from Bon Appetit, contributed by Claire Saffitz. I used two broccoli crowns, one red bell pepper, two carrots, and one large shallot in the mixed vegetables. We ate it over fresh rice noodles; I think it would also be wonderful with rice. It was absolutely delicious and faster than takeout.
1½ cups whole peeled tomatoes, plus juices from one 15-ounce can or half of one 28-ounce can (I cheated and used diced tomatoes.)
1 13.5-ounce can unsweetened coconut milk
approximately 1 pound mixed fresh vegetables (such as broccoli, cauliflower, red bell peppers, carrots, and/or shallots), cut into 1-inch pieces
1 pound firm white fish (such as halibut or cod), skin removed or 1 1/2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 2-inch pieces
12 to 24 oz fresh rice noodles, cooked according to package directions
minced and whole cilantro leaves, for serving
lime wedges, for serving
Pulse shallot, garlic, and ginger in a food processor to finely chop.
Heat oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add shallot mixture and cook, stirring often, until golden brown, about 4 minutes.
Add curry paste and turmeric; cook, stirring, until paste is darkened in color and mixture starts to stick to pan, about 3 minutes.
Add tomatoes, breaking up with your hands, then juices. Cook, stirring often and scraping up browned bits, until tomatoes start to break down and stick to pot, about 5 minutes.
Stir in coconut milk and season with salt. Simmer, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking, until mixture is slightly thickened and flavors meld, 8–10 minutes.
Add vegetables and pour in enough water to cover (limit to 1/2 to 1 cup to prevent the sauce from becoming too thin). Bring to a simmer and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are crisp-tender, 8–10 minutes.
Season fish or chicken all over with salt and nestle into curry (add a little more water if it’s very thick). Return to a simmer and cook just until meat is cooked through, about 5 minutes.
Spoon curry over rice noodles and top with cilantro and a squeeze of lime.
Do Ahead: Curry base (without vegetables or fish) can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and chill. Reheat over medium-low, adding water to thin as needed.