Tampilkan posting dengan label Sauces. Tampilkan semua posting
Tampilkan posting dengan label Sauces. Tampilkan semua posting
Spaghetti Al Tonno – Nothing Fishy About This “Meat” Sauce

Spaghetti Al Tonno – Nothing Fishy About This “Meat” Sauce

Spaghetti al tonno is one of my all-time favorite "go to" pasta dishes, and I hope this re-make of an old video helps make it one of yours. I did a very similar spaghetti with spicy tuna sauce for About.com a long time ago, but never got around to doing an official Food Wishes version.

Having said that, there really is no “official” recipe, as this is the type of dish that gets made a little differently every time. Not different on purpose, mind you, but different since that’s what happens when you cook without written recipes, which by the way, is the recommended method. 

I love a classic meat sauce as much as the next half-Italian, but when I want something quick and easy for a weeknight meal, I reach for the tuna. By the time you bring a pot of water to a boil, choose a wine, and cook your pasta, the sauce should be done. What if all that sounds great, but you don’t like fish? Then, this is perfect.

As I say in the video, the taste and texture is really closer to a veal sauce, than one made with fish. Above and beyond the non-fishy flavor, this is also lower in fat and calories, in case you’re into that kind of thing. So, the next time you’re in the mood for a quick spaghetti with “meat” sauce, I hope you give this delicious pasta sauce a try. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 4 Portions Spaghetti Al Tonno:
2 tbsp olive oil
1 anchovy filet
2 tablespoons capers
3 cloves minced garlic
1/2 cup white wine (Note: if you can’t use wine, don’t. Use a splash of stock)
3 cups crushed San Marzano tomatoes
red pepper flakes, to taste
1/4 tsp dried oregano
salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste
7 ounces oil-packed tuna, drained (reserve and use oil!)
1/4 cup chopped Italian parsley
12 ounces dry spaghetti
Parmigiano-Reggiano for top
When I Think March, I Think Peanuts

When I Think March, I Think Peanuts

For some arbitrary reason, March is National Peanut Month, and to help kick it off, here are a couple of video recipes that feature this great American legume. You can’t beat a warm stew on a cold night, and they don’t get much warmer than red beef curry. The peanuts may seem like a minor player, but they make the dish.

If you want your peanuts more liquid than solid, then by all means, check out this great, and very easy satay dipping sauce. You seriously can’t run out of things to stick in there. 

I hope you give them a try soon, and here’s wishing you a happy and safe National Peanut Month. Click on the titles if you want to read the original post, and see the ingredients. Enjoy!

Happy National Almond Day Eve!

Happy National Almond Day Eve!

I'm not sure if you've finalized menu plans for tomorrow's big National Almond Day celebration, but just in case you haven't, I hope you'll consider this beautiful almond arugula pesto! 

I know pesto is something that's generally served in the summer, but since arugula is so (too?) easy to find year-round, there's really no need to wait. I hope you give this delicious, and easy condiment a try soon. Enjoy!

Click here to read original post, and to get the ingredient list.

That Other Meat Sauce

That Other Meat Sauce

We did a classic Italian bolognese sauce not too long ago, which reminded me that I’ve actually never posted a basic, Italian-American meat sauce. This sauce goes by many names, including Sunday sauce, since that’s the day it’s traditionally made, but for me growing up, this was just called “sauce.”

This is one of those primal recipes that always follows the same procedure, yet almost never contains exactly the same ingredients. I was raised on a blend of beef, pork, and chicken, but any and all leftover proteins can, and must, be added to the pot.

Meatballs are a great choice; as are things like pigs feet, neck bones, and other similar cuts. The tougher the meat, the better it’s going to be in this sauce. Besides playing meat roulette, I’ll also switch different herbs like basil in and out, as well as include the occasional season vegetable.

You can also vary your results here with different tomato products. I went old-school and hand-crushed whole plums, but you can also use crushed or pureed tomatoes as well. The finer and smoother the tomatoes are processed, the thicker your sauce will be, so keep that in mind. Speaking of tomatoes; yes, it is much better to caramelize the tomato paste with the onions before you add the San Marzanos, but I didn't because Grandma didn't, and also, I forgot. 

As long as you cook the meat long enough, and season thoughtfully, there’s really no way this sauce isn’t going to be great. So, while you may not have grown up in an Italian-American home, with this comforting sauce simmering on the stove every Sunday, your family still can. I hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 6 portions:
2 tbsp olive oil, divided
1 beef shank
2 pounds pork ribs
2 bone-in chicken thighs
1 diced onion
6 cloves garlic
3 (28-oz) cans San Marzano plum tomatoes, crushed or blended smooth
(Note - any canned tomato product will work. Try with pureed or already crushed tomatoes and save a step)
1/4 cup tomato paste
2 cups water, more as needed
2 tsp salt, or to taste
1 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tbsp chopped Italian parsley
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
Pan-Roasted Halibut with Clamshell Mushrooms & Lemon Butter Sauce – Long in Name, Short in Shopping List

Pan-Roasted Halibut with Clamshell Mushrooms & Lemon Butter Sauce – Long in Name, Short in Shopping List

Above and beyond keeping things simple, and pardon the cliché, letting the natural goodness of the ingredients shine through, the beauty of a recipe like this pan-roasted halibut with clamshell mushrooms, is that there are just less things to possibly screw up. 

That should be great news to people terrified of making fish recipes. Brown some mushrooms, sear some fish, and finish with yet another simple and delicious pan sauce. That’s really it, and much like our famous, “Just Chicken and Mushrooms” recipe, I think you’ll be amazed at how much flavor these few components provide.

Speaking of flavor, you can certainly use a non-stick pan here, which pretty much insures your fish will go un-mutilated; but as you’ll see in the video, if you use cast iron, or stainless steel, a little bit of fish flesh will form a fond on the bottom of the pan, which will give you a much richer base for the butter sauce.

In case you didn't already know, mushrooms and halibut have a natural affinity for each other, and both are wonderful with the lemon-parsley butter sauce. So, whether you fear cooking fish, or not, I hope you give this super simple, yet fabulous recipe a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 portions:
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter, melted in oil
2 (7-oz each) halibut filets
salt and cayenne to taste
handful of clamshell mushrooms, or sliced un-cool, regular mushrooms
1/4 cup water
juice from 1/2 lemon, or to taste
1 tbsp chopped Italian parsley
1 1/2 tbsp butter to finish sauce
Creamy Bay Scallop Spaghetti – An Almost Perfect Post-Holidays Pasta

Creamy Bay Scallop Spaghetti – An Almost Perfect Post-Holidays Pasta

After all those rich, complicated, and time-consuming holiday recipes, I’m always craving something light, fast, and easy; and this creamy bay scallop spaghetti is all that and more. Literally “more,” in that this is not light, but quite delicious, and in roughly the time it takes you to boil spaghetti, the sauce should be just about ready.

With some similar recipes to this, the chef will have you remove the scallops as soon as they’re seared, to be added back right at the end. Sounds smart since these little mollusks only take a few minutes to cook, but I think it’s a mistake. Yes, the scallops will be smaller and firmer using my method, but the trade-off is a much more flavorful sauce.

Sometimes cooks are so afraid to overcook and ruin something, they never extract as much flavor as possible. Sure, if you boiled these bay scallops another ten minutes or so, they’d get start getting dry and rubbery, but here they’re still plenty tender and moist enough, and I think you’ll agree the sherry sauce benefits significantly.

Regarding the sherry wine: If you can’t have or don’t want to use it, you’re on your own with replacements. While this would probably still work with none, or any number of sort-of-sweet, sort-of-acidic substations, I make mine with sherry, so I can’t tell you what will happen if you stray.

The meat’s another story. Feel free to switch out the scallops with any cubed protein, so really, if you think about it, I just shoed you like a dozen new recipes. You’re welcome! I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 4 appetizer-sized portions:
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 pound bay scallops
2 tbsp butter
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tsp lemon zest
pinch red pepper flakes
1/3 cup sherry wine
1 cup heavy cream
salt and pepper to taste
juice of 1 lemon or to taste
8 oz cooked thick spaghetti
2 tbsp Italian parsley, divided
Parmigiano-Reggiano to taste
Roasted Beef Tri Tip with Four-Peppercorn Crust – A Holiday Roast with an Angle

Roasted Beef Tri Tip with Four-Peppercorn Crust – A Holiday Roast with an Angle

Tri tip of beef is a common summer grill option, but I don’t think I’d ever seen it done as a holiday roast. I tried to think of a reason why it wouldn’t work, but I couldn’t come up with anything. In fact, I decided that not only would this make a great, and more affordable alternative to prime rib, but it would also remind guests of mid-July, which is a proven treatment for winter blues. Side effects may include seconds and thirds.

This is not as tender as a prime rib, but if cooked to the right doneness, you’ll be enjoying juicy, flavorful, and plenty tender enough meat. To that end, I’d avoid the temptation to cook this rare, which can make it too chewy. I like to pull it at 130 F. internal temp, which after resting will give you something closer to medium. For me, this provides the best texture, and an even beefier flavor.

Having said that, there should be something for everyone. Plenty of nice pink meat to go around, and the narrower end will provide just enough well-done for your Aunt. You know, the one who's afraid to get a brain parasite after watching that show on Discovery Channel.

As I mentioned in the video, any veal, beef, or chicken stock/broth will work for the sauce, but I used a super sticky oxtail broth that I will show at future date. If you can’t wait, simply do our beef stock recipe with oxtails. Anyway, if you’re looking to do a beef roast for the holiday table, I hope you give this peppery tri tip a try. Enjoy!


Ingredients for about 6 portions:
2 1/2 to 3 pound beef tri tip roast, trimmed
3-4 garlic cloves crushed with a pinch of salt and a tablespoon of olive oil
salt to taste
enough very coarsely ground black, white, green, and pink peppercorns to cover the surface,
about 4-5 tbsp
Start at 450 F. for 15 minutes, removed and turn roast, reduce heat to 200 F. and roast to an internal temperature of 125-130 F. Let rest 15 minutes!

For the pan sauce;
Reserved pan drippings, about 2 tbsp
1 rounded tablespoon flour
3 cups rich *veal, beef, or chicken broth or stock (or oxtail…coming soon!)
1 tbsp balsamic vinegar
salt and cayenne to taste
*Most fancy grocery stores will sell frozen veal stock or demi-glace (already reduced-by-half veal stock), which is great for special occasion sauces like this.
Maple Walnut Cranberry Sauce – I'm Fine Now, But I Used to Be Nuts

Maple Walnut Cranberry Sauce – I'm Fine Now, But I Used to Be Nuts

It funny how certain food memories stick in your brain, and this maple walnut cranberry sauce is the result of one such remembrance. I can’t tell you when or where, but sometime during my formative years I saw a cranberry sauce loaded with chopped walnuts, and I totally freaked. 

Not outwardly, as I have a decent poker face, but inside I was like, “what the hell is that?” That’s how it was for me early in life. If I saw a food prepared differently from the way I’d always seen it, I just assumed it was a terrible idea. Like ketchup on a hot dog…okay, so I happened to be right that time, but generally it’s not a great attitude to have.

As I pondered this season’s annual Thanksgiving cranberry sauce, and which styles I hadn’t tried yet, I remembered how off-putting that walnut-studded version was, and I decided to face my demons. I’m happy to report, as usual, I was totally wrong. It works perfectly.

Besides the nuts, I really enjoyed the job the maple syrup did sweetening the acidic berries. I recommend using a Grade B maple syrup if you can find it. It’s darker and thicker, and boasts a stronger maple flavor, so it’s the preferred syrup for cooking and baking by those in the know (also know as, “Canadians”).

So, if you’re looking for new and exciting cranberry sauce recipe this holiday season, I hope you give this a try. You’d be nuts not to. Enjoy!


Maple Walnut Cranberry Sauce Ingredients:
(makes about 2 cups)
1 (12 oz) package fresh cranberries, washed
1 cinnamon stick
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup maple syrup
1 tbsp freshly grated ginger
1/4 cup port wine
3/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 tbsp orange zest
pinch of salt
1 cup chopped walnut, toasted a light golden-brown
Gorgonzola Cream Sauce – Now with Cream!

Gorgonzola Cream Sauce – Now with Cream!

Since we’re heading into rich and creamy sauce season, I thought I’d use a nice hunk of Gorgonzola as an excuse to post a tutorial for a classic “cream sauce.” 

Unlike what’s passed off as the real stuff at casual dining chains, a true cream sauce contains nothing but heavy cream, and is on another level when it comes to taste and texture. A regular diet of cream sauce isn’t recommended, but once in a while, it’s nice to take a break from the old 2%, and the technique is dead simple. Simmer cream in a saucepan until it reduces and thickens slightly, flavor it however, and toss in some hot (hopefully stuffed) pasta. Done and done.

I went with a fairly mild, crumbly Gorgonzola this time, but no matter which you choose, be careful not to “cook” the cheese. You just want to stir it in on low, until it’s almost gone, and then turn off the heat. Otherwise the cheese will “break,” and you’ll have a greasy mess.

Since my mini-ravioli delivery system featured a squash filling, I decided to finish with diced apples and toasted walnuts. It was perfect with the rich sauce, and I recommend it if you’re using a similar pasta. Since the sauce itself is so easy, as in one ingredient easy, you can spend all that extra brainpower thinking of things you can add to it. I hope you give this great sauce technique a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 large or 4 smaller portions:
1 cup heavy whipping cream (36% fat)
salt and pepper to taste
cayenne to taste
3 ounces Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
2 tbsp chopped Italian parsley
finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, optional
6 ounces dry mini-ravioli (double to 12-oz if using fresh ravioli or tortellini)
1/2 apple, diced
1/4 cup chopped toasted walnuts
Bolognese Sauce – Hip Hip Hazan!

Bolognese Sauce – Hip Hip Hazan!

This bolognese sauce is dedicated to the late, great Marcella Hazan, who passed away in September, at the age of 89. She was considered the Julia Child of Italian food, and at a time when most Americans though “bolognese” was spaghetti sauce with chunks of hamburger it, Marcella taught us just how magnificent this meat sauce could be.

One thing that always surprises people making this recipe for the first time is the absence of garlic. Hazan railed against the common belief that garlic should be added to any and all Italian recipes. She once wrote, “the unbalanced use of garlic is the single greatest cause of failure in would-be Italian cooking,” and “Garlic can be exciting when you turn to it sporadically, on impulse, but on a regular basis, it is tiresome.”

Would a few minced garlic cloves ruin this incredibly delicious pasta sauce? Probably not, but since this is supposed to be something of a tribute, I decided to remain true. Speaking of ingredients, I used ground beef here, but I’ve also done this with cubed chuck roast, which works wonderfully as well.

Anyway, I really hope you give this classic bolognese a try, and if you do, and there’s some extra wine around, please raise a glass, and toast the “Nonna” of Italian cuisine in America. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 6 portions:
1 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp butter
1 cup finely diced onions
1/2 cup finely diced celery
1/2 cup finely diced carrot
1 1/2  tsp salt, or to taste
freshly ground black pepper and cayenne to taste
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
1 1/2 lb ground beef
1 1/2 cups milk
2 cups white wine
1 can San Marzano plum tomatoes (28-oz), about 3 cups
2 cups water, or as needed
Salt-Roasted Chicken – Tastes Like Chicken

Salt-Roasted Chicken – Tastes Like Chicken

There's no mystery why “Chicken” is one of the most popular recipe searches ever. Everyone loves chicken, but it’s easy to get tired of, so we're always on the lookout for new things to try. 

The problem is we get so tied up in adding things, that we forget how amazing roast chicken can be when we take things away…like everything, except a very generous dusting of kosher salt. 

When you prep a chicken like this, and roast it in a very hot oven, the bird has no choice but to cook and crisp up in its own juices, which results in very moist, flavorful meat. Thomas Keller, who helped popularize this minimalist method, argues that cooking the thighs/legs as quickly as possible in a very hot oven prevents the breasts from drying out, and I tend to agree. 

Of course, no matter how juicy and chickeny your chicken tastes, it can only get better garnished with a little spoonful of thyme butter sauce. I wanted to remind everyone how simple it is to make these quick, butter-based pan sauces. If you know how to make one, you know how to make a thousand. 

The important thing to remember is that any time there’s a pan sitting around crusted with caramelized meat drippings, you’re always only three minutes away from a world-class sauce. I hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for four portions:
1 big chicken, about 3 1/2 to 4 pounds
lots of kosher salt (coat the entire surface of the bird, inside and out, with the salt, being extra generous on the breasts)
– Roast at 450 F. for 50-60 minutes
For the sauce:
1 tbsp thyme leaves
1 lemon, juiced
1/3 cup chicken broth (plus all extra juices from rested chicken plate)
2 tbsp cold butter cut in 4 pieces
salt and pepper to taste
cayenne, to taste
(Note: I’m totally guessing at measurements here, since you kind of just splash stuff in. Use the force.)
Beef Medallions with Fresh Horseradish Cream – Perfect for the Middle of Fallmer

Beef Medallions with Fresh Horseradish Cream – Perfect for the Middle of Fallmer

This time of year can be a little schizophrenic for a cook. We’ve not quite let go of summer and its fast, fresh food; but at the same time, the cooler weather has us craving hearty, more comforting fall fare. This beef medallions with fresh horseradish cream recipe is delicious nod to that kind of seasonal culinary dilemma.

The combination of the sweet, juicy tomato salad base, along with the seared beef, and aromatic sauce works whether you’re enjoying it on a warm autumn day, or cold, rainy night. My only regret is I didn’t have any crusty bread around to soak up all those incredible juices. That's a rookie mistake any time of year!

Like I said in the video, horseradish is easy to find these days, especially in the higher-end grocery chains. It’s usually sold by the pound, so don’t be afraid to ask the produce person to cut you off a smaller piece, as the roots can get pretty big. If you’ve never used fresh horseradish before, I hope you check it out soon. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 portions:
2 tbsp vegetable oil for frying
4 pieces (about 3-oz each) beef top sirloin, pounded into 1/4-inch thick medallions
salt, pepper, and cayenne to taste
flour as needed
2 cups cherry tomatoes, quartered
1 tbsp rice vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp sugar
freshly ground black pepper to taste
For the horseradish cream:
2 tbsp freshly, finely grated horseradish root
pinch of salt
The Old Empty Mayo Jar Dressing Trick – Scrap the Scrape!

The Old Empty Mayo Jar Dressing Trick – Scrap the Scrape!

They say when life gives you lemons, make lemonade; but what about when life gives you empty mayonnaise jars? Mayonade? No, of course not. We’re going to make salad dressing instead, and “scrape the scrape.”

I’ll often add a tablespoon or two of mayonnaise when I make a vinaigrette, to help emulsify things, as well as provide a little extra creaminess to the dressing. With that in mind, when I get down to the end of a jar, I don’t scrape, I shake.

I’m posting the ingredients I used below just in case you’re curious, but this post isn’t really about a recipe, but simply a tip for using up the last of that mayo without all that annoying butterknifing. Now, I just need to work on a recipe for using up the last of the dressing clinging to the inside of the jar. Enjoy!


Ingredients for 1 1/2 cups of dressing:
1 empty mayo jar, with at least 1 tbsp of mayo inside
1 clove minced garlic
1 tbsp chopped fresh herbs (I used parsley, thyme, and chives)
1/2 cup wine vinegar
1 cup olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
cayenne to taste
pinch of Herbes de Provence

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Peanut Dipping Sauce – To Serve or Not to Serve with Beef Satay

Peanut Dipping Sauce – To Serve or Not to Serve with Beef Satay

As promised, here’s the new and improved peanut dipping sauce recipe we just featured in the beef satay video. Of course, now I’m finding out that real beef satay is actually served with a sweet, spicy rice vinegar sauce, but that’s another video, and a rather easy one at that. Stay tuned.

There are no great mysteries here – mix it up, and then taste, taste, and taste. Peanut sauces are like snowflakes, and you really should twist the formula to suit your palette. You can add all kinds of fun stuff like lemongrass, ginger, Thai basil just to name a few. If peanut allergies are a concern, I’ve had this done with almonds, and it’s not bad at all.

One big tip if you make this ahead. It will harden up in the fridge, and you’ll need to get it back to room temp before serving. I usually just microwave for a couple seconds, and it will be back to its gorgeous, shiny, flowing self. I hope you give this delicious all-purpose dipping sauce a try soon. Enjoy!


Makes about 1 1/2 cup Peanut Dipping Sauce:
3/4 cup smooth all-natural, pure peanut butter
2 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp fish sauce
2 tsp soy sauce
2 tsp sesame oil
1/2 lime, juiced
sriracha or other hot chili sauce, to taste
1 small can (5.6 oz) coconut milk

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Grilled Salmon with Warm Bacon and Corn Relish – It's a Noun and a Verb

Grilled Salmon with Warm Bacon and Corn Relish – It's a Noun and a Verb

This grilled salmon with warm bacon and corn relish is another installment in our long-running series, “Salmon Recipes for People Tired of Salmon Recipes.” No one eats as much salmon as I do, and so I’m always on the lookout for new ways to make it seem a tad more exciting.

In the business, this is known as “elevating” it, and as you may already know, nothing elevates like bacon. It’s the helium of smoked meats. Combine that bacon with sweet, almost raw corn, and you have a relish worthy of its verb. I mean, if your not going to relish your relish, what's the point?

I mention in the video that I like the taste and texture of white corn, but prefer the sunnier appearance of yellow corn. That trade-off is always an interesting discussion, with some saying taste always trumps looks, while others will insist that the appearance effects how the flavor is perceived, so even if slightly less sweet, the golden colored one may be enjoyed more.

Like most food-related arguments, both sides are right and wrong, and I tend to oscillate between the two schools, although when in doubt, I’ll generally lean toward taste. Anyway, no matter which color corn you use, you’re sure to enjoy this new, and hopefully slightly more exciting way to serve salmon. Give it a try soon, and enjoy!


Ingredients for 2 Portions:
2 center-cut, boneless salmon filets (8-oz)
salt and pepper to taste
For the relish:
corn kernels from 2 ears of sweet corn, plus any juices
6 stripes bacon, sliced
1/4 cup green onions, white and light parts (reserve green for garnish)
1/4 cup diced red pepper
salt, pepper, cayenne to taste
2 tsp olive oil (optional depending on how much bacon fat you had)
1 or 2 tbsp rice vinegar (or other vinegar, or acid like lemon, lime, etc)
*I didn’t have any in the garden, but a little fresh tarragon is great in this too.

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