Recipes

Turkey Chili with Kale and White Beans

April 5, 2014
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Is it chili?

Is it soup?

I really don’t know, but whatever it is, it’s so good that when I recently made an extra large batch for a dinner party hoping for leftovers for the next week’s lunches, I was left with nothing but a single bowl.

I came across this recipe at the beginning of the year while scouring Pinterest for “healthy” meals to make after the post holiday binge and used it as inspiration for this dish. While my version is different, and soupier (is that even a word?) than the original, it’s still incredibly healthy and delicious and it quickly became a family favorite.  I also chose to add kale to the recipe because frankly, most of us don’t get enough of the good stuff. Plus, I like the texture and the slightly bitter flavor it adds. This chili/soup is fresh, clean and flavorful and I hope

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Mise En Place- A Place For Everything and Everything in Its Place

March 29, 2014
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Mise en place~ A place for everything and everything in its place

Have you ever wondered how restaurants do it? How they can serve hundreds of people a night with a menu that has dozens of choices? In the end, it’s all about the mise en place.

Every day, cooks arrive hours before the restaurant opens to the public to prep for that day’s menu. They slice and dice, simmer and sear, and generally organize all the ingredients needed for every dish they are responsible for. In restaurant lingo, they “prep their mise en place”. Without it, they are lost.

Mise en place (pronounced meeze ehn plas) is a French term which loosely translates as “put in place”. This concept allows both professional and home cook alike, to prepare for one or a hundred in an efficient and seamless way, so that the dish or an entire …

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How To Make Salmon Gravlax

March 1, 2014
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One of my favorite things to do is to show people how simple it is to make things at home from scratch. Do not fear cooking (or in this case, curing). Love it and it will love you back. Gravlax is super easy to make at home, and yet at the same time, a delicious and impressive bit of culinary magic which will have your friends and family saying, “You made this?”

What is Gravlax? It’s is a salt and sugar cured salmon and is a wonderful addition to a brunch buffet, open faced sandwich or on canapes. There is often a bit of confusion surrounding gravlax, with many people assuming it is the same as smoked salmon or lox. In fact, gravlax is not smoked at all but instead cured by the process of covering it in salt and sugar which draws out the excess moisture (less moisture=slower spoilage).

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Pork Stew with Mushrooms and Artichokes

February 22, 2014
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Is it cold and snowing where you are? Are you swirling in the center of the Polar Vortex? Here in Southern California it’s a beautiful and sunny 72 degrees today. I say that not to brag, but with desperation. Can we have some of your snow and rain? Pleeeease…. In case you haven’t heard (being buried under all that snow and all), we are in the middle of the worst drought in recorded history here. There is NO snow in the mountains and the reservoirs are drying up.

Things are getting desperate here, yet it seems like most people where I live are completely unaware. My lawn is the color of old cardboard, while my neighbor’s lawn looks like a golf course watered three days a week. Local news talks about the unending forecast of “beautiful weather”, and moans if there is even a 20% chance of rain (which never …

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Crab Cakes with Spicy Yogurt Remoulade

February 8, 2014
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Are you the type of person who if you see a particular item on a menu, you will order it without fail? Typically this is something you would never make at home, right? When I see duck with a crispy skin, there’s a 99.99% chance I will order it, but duck is something I never make at home.

If I’m ever in a restaurant with my husband and there is a crab cake on the menu I know exactly what he’s ordering. When I was a chef we had a running joke; if I saw a ticket come into the kitchen with a seared ahi and a crab cake on it for a single diner at the bar, I knew he was in the restaurant. He’s that predictable when it comes to a menu.

Crab cakes aren’t really that difficult to make at home, but I’ll be honest, they’re not …

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Kale Salad with Tangerines, Tiny Garlic Croutons, and Spicy Tahini Dressing

January 4, 2014
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There’s a lot of baggage associated with kale. We’re told it’s healthy and we’re told we should love it. Kale is trendy. Where I live, in southern California, yoga mat toting twenty-somethings extol the virtues of kale over nonfat soy chai lattes or kale laced smoothies so often it’s become a cliche or a SNL skit. The local evening news includes kale in their healthy eating segments at least once a month. So it’s normal to want to push back and ask for a triple shot caramel Frappuccino instead, because kale is so last year, right?

Not really. Kale is still right now, and last year, and even last century. There are Tuscan recipes going back to the 1700’s which use kale. Kale is here to stay and you may just find it’s something you’ll crave whether or not you are trying to eat healthy. Being good …

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