October 11th, 2019
Sometimes when I post a recipe, that recipe lends itself very easily to an accompaniment. My marshmallows became marshmallow caramel bars, my chocolate fudge frosting went into the perfect party cake. So what was I going to do with Monday’s homemade pita bread? That’s right, I was going to make dip.
Actually, what really happened was that whenever anyone comes over to my apartment, I like to have something ready for them to eat. And with the pitas already made, it was relatively painless to find ingredients for an excellent little dip. The only bummer was my lack of greek-style yogurt, because it would have made the dip thicker, richer and all around better. But in a pinch, this was pretty darn good.
So how many of you have made the pitas already? Get out your food processor, because this is the perfect thing to serve with them, and it comes together in about 20 seconds flat. How could you resist?
Yogurt Dip with Pita Chips
2 homemade pitas
Olive oil and salt, for brushing
6 ounces nonfat greek yogurt (or 2/3 cup regular yogurt)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sea salt
3 tbsp chopped chives
Cut pitas into wedges, brush with olive oil and sprinke with salt. Bake in a 300 degree oven for about eight minutes.
Meanwhile, in a food processor, combine yogurt, garlic powder, sea salt and chopped chives. Process until evenly distributed and transfer to a bowl. Surround with pita chips, and serve.
Serves 3-4 as an appetizer.
October 9th, 2019
A long time ago, I read Kitchen Confidential by Anthony Bourdain, where he said there were three things that made all the difference between restaurant kitchens and home kitchens. Those things, if you can’t guess, are fresh herbs, squeeze bottles, and pastry rings.
Those three items, at least to me, were a bit of a revelation. Fortunately, I live fairly close to a kitchen supply store, so within a few weeks, I’d picked up squeeze bottles and pastry rings. The squeeze bottles led to lovely dishes like this and this, and fresh herbs had always been a staple of my kitchen. But those pastry rings — for some reason, I remained a little terrified of them.
I mean, I used them for desserts fairly regularly. But here, where I wanted to take a simple summer salad and make it into something special-looking, I had a feeling it was time to get over my fears.
And wow, they sure did. Anthony Bourdain knows his stuff! This was so pretty and elegant, I only wished we had company to serve it to! So if you’re looking for something to add a little ‘wow’ factor to an everyday dinner (and a really healthy one, at that!), all you need is this little restaurant trick. Get them on Amazon here, or at your local cooking supply store!
strawberry tomato salad recipe
1 cup cherry tomatoes, diced into very small cubes (about 1/4″ per side)
1 cup small strawberries, trimmed and diced into very small strips (about 1/4″ per side)
1 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
2 tsp aged balsamic vinegar
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1 ounce goat cheese, crumbled
In small mixing bowl, toss together tomatoes, strawberries, oil, vinegar, and salt. Let marinate at room temperature 10 minutes.
To serve, place the mixture into a 3″ diameter pastry ring on individual plates, pressed to pack lightly. Remove the rings delicately, top each salad with goat cheese, and serve.
October 7th, 2019
I joined a CSA this winter, and my favorite part of it, so far, was an organic, free range chicken. The moment I saw it, I knew I wanted to do something special with it.
But sometimes the best recipes are the simplest, and this was one of those times. This chicken would make an excellent weeknight dinner, and roasting is by far the easiest preparation imaginable.Â Since it also adds a ton of flavor, you really can’t do much better.
So if you want something healthy and easy after a season of elaborate holiday cooking, try this.Â And happy new year, everyone!Â I, for one, am ringing in 2009Â by giving myÂ kitchen a rest for a day or two!
Garlic Roasted Chicken
1 whole chicken, cut into breasts and legs, skin removed
6 large garlic cloves
1/3 cup olive oil
Preheat oven to 450 degrees.
Rub each chicken breast and leg with olive oil, salt and pepper. Finely chop the garlic cloves and cover the chicken with them.
Roast for 25-30 minutes, or until chicken reaches internal temperature of 165 degrees. Serve.