Category Archives: Recipes (Savory)

Savory French Toast — For Breakfast, Lunch Or Dinner

French toast gets a savory makeover with Indian spices.

French toast gets a savory makeover with Indian spices.

 

If you’re under the impression that French toast has to be sweet and only be enjoyed at breakfast or brunch, you are in for a delicious eye-opening taste.

Because “Savory French Toast” done up with Indian spices and served with a fruity tomato chutney with a hit of heat will have your taste buds dancing.

The recipe is from the new “Gunpowder: Explosive Flavors from Modern India” (Kyle Books), of which I received a review copy.

The book is by husband-and-wife Harneet Baweja and Devina Seth, along with Nirmal Save, the head chef of their Gunpowder restaurant in London, where the home-style cooking is a modern take on favorites they all grew up with. That includes “Kale and Corn Cakes,” “Ginger Chicken Wings,” “Maa’s Kashmiri Lamb Chops,” and “Mint and Apple Lassi.”

gunpowder 2

Brioche is used for this French toast, its soft, buttery texture and indulgent flavor creating a subtle sweet base for the savory, spicy flavors it sops up.

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All Hail: Syrian Kale and Carrot Salad with Shattered Dates

Not your typical kale salad by any means.

Not your typical kale salad by any means.

 

Can you stand just one more kale salad recipe?

Oh come on, sure you can.

You know your love of this leafy green hasn’t waned even if you don’t want to admit it publicly.

Just embrace it. After all, in our society, how many times do we actually value something that’s crinkly and wrinkly, right? Ever more reason to never let go of this green beauty.

Especially when it’s showcased with a spectrum of flavor, texture and downright scrumptiousness in “Syrian Kale and Carrot Salad with Shattered Dates.”

This easy recipe is from “Seattle Cooks” (Figure 1), of which I received a review copy. Seattle food writer Julien Perry spotlights 40 of the city’s top restaurants with recipes and profile stories.

Seattle Cooks

Enjoy everything from “Fava Santorini” from Chef Zoi Antonitsas of Little Fish to “Shrimp and Shittake Pot Stickers with Riesling Dip” from Chefs Tom Douglas and Brock Johnson of Dahlia Lounge, and “Kalua Pork Belly with Korean Chimichurri” by Chef Rachel Yang of Revel.

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Rancho Gordo’s Alubia Bean Salad with Pineapple Vinaigrette

Get to know how good beans can truly be.

Get to know how good beans can truly be.

 

I remember there was a time when I found beans utterly ho-hum.

I couldn’t imagine what could be that exciting about them. I was always more interested in what was with them or around them.

That was until I discovered Napa’s Rancho Gordo beans.

That’s when I realized beans could be comforting, surprising, satisfying and with far more flavor and character than I’d ever imagined.

Founder Steve Sando sources astounding heirloom beans with such evocative names as Christmas Lima Bean, Yellow Indian Woman Bean, and Good Mother Stallard Bean.

At least once a year, I make a purchase of an assortment of his beans, most of which carry me through the chilly winter in numerous dishes. But they’re equally delicious when the weather is still warm, such as in dishes like “Alubia Blanca Bean Salad with Pineapple Vinaigrette.”

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It’s a recipe from his cookbook, “The Rancho Gordo Vegetarian Kitchen,” which he wrote with Julia Newberry last year. As the name implies, it’s filled with meat-less recipes that star all manner of beans.

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Pizza Pizza? Nope, Pizza Chicken

A one-pan chicken dish with the taste of a Margherita pizza.

A one-pan chicken dish with the taste of a Margherita pizza.

 

Close your eyes, dig a fork in, and you might just swear you were eating pizza.

But this one-skillet wonder is crust-less and carb-light.

“Pizza Chicken” does indeed have all the flavors of a Margherita pizza — mozzarella, basil and tomatoes, along with briny anchovies, capers and porky pancetta. But it’s chicken that forms its foundation.

This sure-to-be new favorite is from “Dinner: Changing the Game” (Clarkson Potter, 2017) by Melissa Clark, of which I received a review copy. I can’t say enough about this book, which is filled with delicious — and realistic — ways to get dinner on the table with little fuss.

DinnerChangingtheGame

“Pizza Chicken” cooks up in one skillet. The recipe advises to use a 10- or 12-inch one. Either the chicken thighs I bought were larger or who know’s what, but I ended up needing to use a 14-inch oven-safe skillet. So, just be aware that you might need a larger pan than called for.

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Neat and Tidy with Ratatouille Tian

Neat as a pin, ratatouille tian.

Neat as a pin, ratatouille tian.

 

I read an amusing article recently about how so many of us love the uncluttered esthetics of open-concept, minimalist home design — yet so few of us can really pull that off because we just have too much darn stuff.

I count myself among those. I readily admit I have countless cookbooks in nearly every room of my house. Though, I’m not as bad as one chef I know, whose wife told me he even has cookbooks stacked underneath the sink. I draw the line at that.

Notebooks teeter in a mountain on my desk. Knickknacks vie for space on living room shelves. My pantry groans with sous vide, pasta, and ice cream maker contraptions. And my kitchen spice cabinet does overflow. So much so, that my husband is sometimes afraid to open it, lest an avalanche of mustard seeds, star anise and za’atar come tumbling down upon him.

As much as I love the look of clean lines, my house will probably never fully achieve that calm, sparse vibe.

So I take comfort where I can, such as in “Ratatouille Tian.”

It’s zucchini, eggplant, and tomatoes, sliced into rounds of the same size, then arranged just so in neat rows in a baking pan. It’s so simple yet so striking in its appearance.

It’s an orderly dish for those times when chaos typically rules.

It’s the perfect delicious anecdote.

And it’s from the new cookbook, “In the French Kitchen with Kids” (Penguin Random House) by Mardi Michels, of which I received a review copy.

In The French Kitchen With Kids

Michels is a full-time French teacher to elementary school kids. Twice a week, she gives them cooking lessons, too. She also is the creator of the blog, Eat.Live.Travel.Write.

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