Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Not sure what to have for dinner tonight? I have a quick, easy, healthy and inexpensive meal that will put dinner on the table in 30 minutes. The main ingredients – local white fish and fresh field greens.
½ cup olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1 pound fresh, local white fish (cod, haddock, or whatever is on sale)
1 can of cannellini or garbanzo beans
4 cups of fresh field greens (spring mix, baby romaine, arugula)
Juice from ½ lemon
Salt and pepper to taste
Saute 2 cloves of very thinly sliced garlic in olive oil (about ½ cup—it’s a lot, but you can use the oil after for other things). Start with cold oil in the pan (it tends to burn if you start with hot oil) and let the garlic cook until just lightly golden brown — about 3 minutes, but keep your eye on it (dark brown or burned means bitter).
Drain the garlic onto paper towels. Pour all but 1 tablespoon of the oil into a bowl and set aside.
Cut the fish into portions, season with salt and pepper, and brown on both sides. Just put it in the pan and don’t move it for 2 minutes; then turn it and cook until it’s cooked through (depends on the fish and the thickness, but 3 minutes oughta do it).
Rinse well and drain 1 can of white beans (I used garbanzo, but cannellini or gigante are great for this, too). In a medium bowl, combine four cups of spring mix or baby romaine with beans, toasted garlic, the juice of half a lemon, and about 1 tablespoon of the cooled garlic oil. Season with salt and pepper. Divide onto four plates and place the fish on top.
Annie B. Copps is a senior editor at Yankee Magazine. Annie oversees the magazine’s food coverage, both as an editor and as a contributor of feature stories and columns.
By Toni Waterman | Friday, August 5, 2011
Aug. 8, 2011
BOSTON — It’s not often you get the chance to share the kitchen with a five-star chef, but once a month, Four Seasons Executive Chef Brooke Vosika opens his doors and recipe book to the public with a cooking class.
“Tonight we’ve got a BBQ class. It’s probably one of our most popular classes,” said Vosika. “We’re going to touch on gas barbeque verses charcoal barbeque, we’re going to touch on the different varieties of barbeque, whether it be a southern style, it can also be a Kansas City style, Texas style, North Carolina style.”
For $150, these eight students get a personal lesson on the art of barbequing. It's a lesson student Sarah Donovan said can’t come soon enough.
“I just got married and someone gave me a grill and it’s sitting on the deck. I haven’t even taken the tarp off,” Donovan said as she put on her apron. “So I’m here to learn how to grill.”
The classes are held in the middle of the Four Seasons Aujourd’hui kitchen. Everyone quickly finds their place around a square table, butcher blocks in front them and a glass of wine in hand.
First up, a lesson on Vosika’s self-described “volcano” sauce. For the past two weeks, Vosika has kept the chilies buried under mounds of salt. He says the salt draws the moisture out of the chilies while at the same time adding some saltiness to them.
“The process then is to wash off as much of the salt as possible, pick the stems off and then we’re going to blend it,” Vosika explained.
Everyone pitches in, in between sips of wine, pinching stems before the chilies are blended with vinegar and water.
Next up, the main course is the ever-daunting ribs. The first thing Vosika shows are baby-back ribs.
“The difference between the baby-back and the regular ribs is that it’s a smaller animal they come from,” he says. “And also they’ve been trimmed down so it’s the center of the rib. You’re not leaving that fat portion on the bottom.”
Vosika boils his ribs for 40 minutes before throwing them on the grill, giving him just enough time to get his Kansas-City-style barbeque sauce together. He starts by chopping some garlic.
“Ketchup is the next one and that’s our base,” he says while pouring it all into a mixing bowl. “Adding our vinegar, chili powder, paprika, olive oil which is important for coating and of course, our volcano sauce,” Voskia says, laughing.
Now it's time to hit the grill. Vosika says this is the point when people make their biggest mistake, using either too much heat or too little heat.
“There’s a fine line between burning something and char-grilling it, really making something so charred that that flavor takes over everything,” Vosika said.
Student Ernie Jones says he's definitely made that mistake. “Not paying attention to the grill when I was doing a low, slow cook and it just got way past the point of when it was done,” Johnson said.
After dousing the ribs with sauce, Vosika grabs them with tongs, demonstrating perfect technique.
“So I’m going to take this side, the side that we’ve done that has the BBQ sauce on it. We’ll lay that right on top. While that’s there, we’ll take some more barbeque sauce.”
After a few minutes sizzling on the grill, it’s time for the best part of the class. Chef stands at the table, doling out the goods: Baby back ribs-regular ribs, wings, homemade potato chips and good conversation.
At the end of the night, students say they’re taking home a lot more than just leftovers. “It was really easy to see how to make different things and with recipes I will actually be able to follow,” says Kara Silvia.
“I loved it,” adds her sister, Kristina. “It was so good, but we’re so full at this point,” she adds, laughing.
Full with a meal that’s finger lickin’ good.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Ming Tsai is the host and executive producer of public television series Simply Ming.
Monday, December 13, 2010
Wednesday, December 22, 2010
By Susie Middleton | Friday, April 20, 2012
A combination of bacon and smoked paprika gives this tomato soup a strong profile that goes perfectly with a gooey grilled cheese sandwich. Go with the sweet pimentón for a rich taste with little heat, or try the hot for a spicier kick in the soup.
1 Tbs. olive oil
3 thick strips bacon (about 3 oz.), thinly sliced
1 large yellow onion, diced (about 1-1/2 cups)
1 Tbs. unbleached all-purpose flour
1 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme
1/2 tsp. sweet or hot pimentón (smoked paprika)
One 28-oz. can whole tomatoes and their juices (3 cups) (preferably San Marzano)
2 cups lower-salt chicken broth
2 Tbs. heavy cream
Freshly ground black pepper
Directions:Put the oil in a large saucepan, add the bacon, and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the bacon renders most of its fat, about 5 minutes. Transfer the bacon to a plate lined with paper towels; let drain and cool, and then coarsely chop. Add the onion and 1/2 tsp. salt to the pan and cook, stirring, until the onion softens and starts to brown lightly, about 5 minutes. Stir in the flour, 2 tsp. thyme, and the pimentón, and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and chicken broth, and bring to a boil. Reduce to a simmer, cover with the lid slightly ajar, and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mixture thickens and the flavors meld, about 15 to 20 minutes. Using an immersion blender or working in batches in a regular blender, purée the soup. Return the soup to the pan, stir in the cream, and bring to a boil. Taste and season with salt and pepper if needed, ladle the soup into serving bowls and serve sprinkled with the bacon pieces and the remaining thyme.
What better partner for tomato soup than a Classic Grilled Cheese? Or to mix it up a little, try a Grilled Goat Cheese Sandwich with Tapenade.
Susie Middleton is editor at large for Fine Cooking magazine.