Merry Christmas with out-of-the-oven, homemade biscuits!
As you ready to open presents this Christmas morning or prepare for the big holiday feast to come tonight, wouldn’t a pan of fresh, warm biscuits hit the spot?
Imagine them slathered with sweet butter and marmalade for breakfast today or alongside glazed ham tonight.
Is your mouth watering yet? I know mine sure is.
Biscuits don’t get any easier or more irresistible than these from Howard Bulka, chef-owner of Howie’s Artisan Pizzeria in Palo Alto and Redwood City.
The Palo Alto location is all about pizza. The Redwood City one, with its much larger and fully equipped kitchen, goes beyond the charred, flavorful pies to include everything from house-made pasta to classic burgers, too.
What’s more, the Redwood City one also offers weekend brunch, which includes an astonishingly great array of baked goods. This is where you’ll often find these heavenly biscuits offered.
Get to know sunchokes.
They look like the love child of ginger and potatoes.
They taste deliciously nutty, sweet and a bit artichoke-like, and have a a texture akin to a creamier water chestnut.
Do you know sunchokes?
These knobby tubers are also known as Jerusalem artichokes.
They’re a pain to peel, as you can imagine. They’re also not easy to find in stores. I’ve bought them at Sprouts and Draeger’s in the past.
And for some people, unfortunately, they are not easy to digest. In fact, their nickname is, um, “fartichokes.” You can read more about that in this enlightening — and slightly amusing — Bon Appetit article.
If you’re trying them for the first time, you probably want to go easy on how many you eat just to see how well your body takes to them.
Golden cauliflower with curry spices.
You have to love a woman whose mantra is: “Be naturally suspicious of any food which is not home-cooked. Always take your own food with you wherever you go, even if you’re not going far.”
Given that, it’s not surprising that Meera Sodha has written an Indian cookbook that celebrates the best of Indian home-cooking.
She acknowledges at the start that cooking Indian food can be quite intimidating to make at home. So often it necessitates special trips to Indian markets or even ordering online to find the necessary ingredients.
Not so with her “Made In India: Recipes From an Indian Family Kitchen” (Flatiron Books), of which I received a review copy. A best-seller in the United Kingdom, her cookbook was published in the United States for the first time this year.
The salad you need to make this holiday season.
Holiday dishes don’t get better than this.
It’s festive, chic — and unbelievably effortless. In short, everything you want when you want to impress, but are loathe to break out in a sweat to do it.
Leave it to the Bay Area’s Joanne Weir to come up with this dazzling “Endive Salad with Lemon Creme Fraiche and Salmon Roe.”
It’s from her new cookbook, “Kitchen Gypsy: Recipes and Stories From A Lifelong Romance with Food” (Oxmoor House), of which I received a review copy.
The cookbook is filled with the dishes that most influenced the life of this long-time PBS cooking show host, who cooked for five years at Berkeley’s Chez Panisse, and now owns Copita in Sausalito.
Imagine setting this dazzling dish down on your holiday table.
Come closer. Closer still. Come on, put those peepers right up to the screen.
Because This Is Squash. From “This Is Camino.”
Of course, that’s not the actual name of this gorgeous dish. But it might very well be because this is the only squash recipe you’ll need this season.
That’s how delicious it is.
The recipe for “Kabocha Squash and Grilled New Onion Salad with Yogurt, Pomegranate, and Almonds” is from the new cookbook, “This Is Camino” (Ten Speed Press), of which I received a review copy.
The 100 recipes draw from the cuisine of Camino, the soulful farm-to-table Oakland restaurant run by Chef Russell Moore, who cooked at Chez Panisse for 21 years, and his co-owner and wife Allison Hopelain.
Much of the cooking at Camino is done on a wood-fired hearth in view of the dining room. The crackling flames kiss dishes such as “Grilled Squid with Tomatoes and Korean Perilla,” “Grilled Chicken Ballotine with Green Lentils and Parsley Root,” and “Grilled Fig Leaf Ice Cream with Grilled Figs.”