Some weeks ago, I had friends over for brunch and served a Mexican-inspired menu. You'll probably never see me present a frosted cake or anything too sugary at the end of a meal, but I don't like to leave people hanging either, and usually make some simple cookies or a fail-proof quick bread. For this particular meal, I made zucchini bread, and instead of serving regular butter alongside, I made a honey-cilantro compound butter to tie in with the Mexican theme. Much to my pleasant surprise, everyone ooh-ed and aah-ed over this "dessert." They licked their fingers, . . .
"What grows together truly goes together" is a quote from the July 2015 Bon Appétit article about French chef Alain Passard. Monsieur Passard owns several farms in France from which he procures the fruits and vegetables for his Paris restaurant, L'Arpège. He is known for serving barely-tampered with produce on his plates, and it is this minimalism and appreciation for nature that made him famous. The idea really stuck with me. "What grows together, goes together" should be a no-brainer, but it's easy to see how this simple idea got lost in a world obsessed with . . .
Browsing through gorgeous mounds of summer produce at the greenmarket, hauling home tote bags full of veggies, and thinking up new recipes as I go has been one of my favorite pastimes this summer. Cooking these little purple potatoes, flavored with bright cilantro and garlic and gently perfumed by lemon, I envisioned myself serving them at an oceanfront summer home on the French riviera instead of my fifth floor walk-up in Queens. This dish is beautiful but simple enough to make after work, and can elevate the most mundane of weeknights. Because of their . . .
While my Instagram suggests I have a wildly cool and lavish New York City diet (Roberta's! Ramen galore!), the truth is, I've sort of fallen into a weeknight dinner rut. Most nights, dinner consists of quinoa or brown rice with beans (usually these), and some sort of vegetable. It's fast, easy and nutritious, but also a major snoozefest. This recipe is an attempt to diversify my dinner routine, but still feel good about what I'm eating. A warm bean salad is all about varying textures: creamy beans, crispy red onions and crunchy bell pepper. Combining the . . .
There are few higher honors for food than comparing it to drugs - namely, "crack." I confess, I've never tried crack or anything remotely like it, but using the word really drives the point home, doesn't it? The inspiration for this dish comes from Barn Joo, a gastropub near my work that has a great happy hour. I always order the bacon Brussels spouts when I'm there. They are technically a side dish but are also perfect for nibbling on with that much-needed après-work cocktail. The dish consists of charred Brussels sprouts, chewy barley and bits of salty bacon, with . . .
Yuca (also known as cassava) is one of those vegetables that if you didn't grow up eating, you probably won't cook for yourself. And who could blame you? Yuca is large, unyielding, and its skin resembles tree bark. Even if you've ever expressed a curiosity in it, the thought of having to tame it to an edible state is probably a big turn-off. Yuca is kind of like a white potato, but waxier, creamier and a bit stringy. I first made its discovery at Cuba, one of my favorite restaurants in the city and one I frequent often. Cuba serves yuca in two iterations: boiled, . . .
Portlandia is a weird show. Correction, when I first saw Portlandia, I thought it was a weird show. But now that I've faithfully watched three seasons, I realize it is absolutely brilliant. If you've never seen it, it's a sketch comedy TV show created by (and starring) Fred Armisen and Carrie Brownstein. Together, they play all types of duos that reflect common stereotypes in modern-day society - basically different types of "hipsters". It's not the slapstick of SNL, or the rom-com of Friends type of funny. It is awkward, often improvised, and after a few episodes, . . .