Chinese Food. One of those things I have a love/hate relationship with. Like ice cream, or chocolate, or french fries. They’re always there for you when you need them but when you eat them you almost always regret it. If only goji berries and broccoli rabe were my comfort foods.
You guys know how I feel about eating chicken every day of the week, and this is another great recipe to switch it up a bit. The broth is infused with ginger, scallions, and spices and the chicken is poached right in the broth. Its a SUPER quick, REALLY delicious weeknight meal, just serve it with some plain or coconut rice and/or dumplings and you’ll have a praiseworthy meal. The soup is filling enough to just eat on its own, too.
I’ve never made an egg drop soup before so this was an experiment…my biggest issue? I was trying to photograph the whisked eggs going into the soup instead of constantly whisking, the most important part! It still came out really tasty but I would have preferred the eggs to blend in with the broth a bit more. Try it, and let me know what you think!
Ginger-Scallion Egg Drop Soup
Makes 2 main course servings or 4 starters
6 scallions, divided
2 cups water
1 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and sliced
1 skinless boneless chicken breast half (6 to 8 oz)
2 large eggs, lightly beaten,
1/4 teaspoon white pepper
Smash 3 scallions and cut into 2-inch pieces, then put in a 2-quart saucepan with water, broth, ginger, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer, then poach chicken at a bare simmer, uncovered, until just cooked through, 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer chicken to a cutting board and let broth steep, covered, 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, chop remaining 3 scallions and shred chicken.
Discard scallions and ginger from broth and bring to a brisk simmer. Add beaten eggs in a slow stream, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and stir in scallions, chicken, and white pepper. Serve drizzled (lightly) with sesame oil.
I don’t know if you noticed but…the WEATHER was amazing today. We have a few nice days ahead of us this week, and I figured that some people might be interested in breaking out their grill for the first time this season. Really, nothing is better than a good turkey burger on the grill for dinner on a night like this.
As I was perusing for interesting turkey burger recipes, my eye of course landed on this Moroccan-spiced one. If you know my tastes, you know that Moroccan spices rank high on my list of favorite flavors and I am always thrilled to see them in unusual places, like pizzas, or these burgers.
All my different pursuits lately have been keeping me extremely busy, so a recipe that is quick is always a plus. These burgers take about 40 minutes from start to finish. An IDEAL weekday dinner.
Moroccan-Spiced Turkey Burgers with Cheddar + Aioli
Makes 4 burgers
1/2 teaspoon cumin seeds
1/2 teaspoon coriander seeds
1/2 cup mayonnaise
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil plus additional for brushing
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons smoked paprika
1 garlic clove, pressed
1 pound ground dark-meat turkey
4 1/3 -inch-thick red onion slices
1 large or 2 small red bell peppers, quartered
4 slices extra sharp cheddar cheese
4 sesame-seed hamburger buns
Toast cumin seeds and coriander seeds in small skillet over medium-high heat until aromatic and slightly darker in color, shaking skillet often, about 1 1/2 minutes. Cool. Finely grind toasted seeds in spice grinder or in mortar with pestle. Whisk mayonnaise, 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, fresh lemon juice, smoked paprika, garlic, and ground spices in small bowl. Season aioli to taste with salt and pepper.
Place turkey in medium bowl. Add 2 tablespoons aioli; mix gently. Using damp hands, divide turkey mixture into 4 equal portions, then form each into scant 3/4-inch thick patty, about 3 1/2 inches in diameter. Using thumb, make small indentation in center of each burger.
Prepare barbecue (medium-high heat). Sprinkle burgers with salt and pepper. Brush onion slices and bell pepper pieces with oil; sprinkle with salt and pepper. Grill onions and bell peppers until soft and charred, about 4 minutes per side.
Grill turkey burgers 5 minutes. Turn over; grill until almost cooked through, about 3 minutes. Top each burger with 1 cheese slice and grill until meat is cooked through and cheese melts, about 2 minutes longer. Place 1 turkey burger on each of 4 bun bottoms. Arrange grilled red pepper pieces, then grilled red onion slices over. Top each with dollop of aioli and some arugula. Cover burgers with bun tops and enjoy!
This one’s for all you pasta lovers out there (myself included). If you are looking for the ultimate comfort meal, this is it. It’s that time of year when the weather is changing every other day – one day you’re sitting outside drinking beers out of a growler, the next, you’re bundled up under the blankets in your living room wondering what you should order for delivery, because there’s no way you’re going grocery shopping in these frigid temperatures. So pick up these ingedients on a warmer day and make it when its -1000 degrees out a day later. Its the perfect “I’ve-had-such-a-long-day-and-I just-want-to-binge-on-comfort-food-but-I-should-really-eat-my-veggies” kind of meal.
I used bacon because I couldn’t get any pancetta that day, but you can use either one. I found the pea level in the original recipe to be a little high, so I’ve cut it down a bit for you in this recipe. I also cut out the cream from the original recipe to make it a bit less heavy. Try it out and let me know what you think!
Fettuccine with Peas Aspargus and Bacon
Adapted from Bon Appetit
Makes 4 servings
12 ounces fettuccine or penne
3 ounces pancetta or bacon, chopped
1 1/4 lbs asparagus, trimmed, cut into 1 inch pieces (cut diagonally for fatter asparagus)
1 1/2 cups shelled fresh green peas, blanched one minute in boiling water, drained, or frozen peas (do not thaw)
1 bunch green onions, thinly sliced, white and pale green parts only
2 garlic cloves, pressed
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon peel
1/4 cup fresh Italian parsley, chopped
1/4 cup thinly sliced fresh basil, chopped
1/4 cup finely crated parmesan cheese
Cook pasta in pot of boiling salted water until just tender but still firm to bite. Drain. Return pasta to pot.
Meanwhile, cook pancetta in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until crisp. Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to paper towels to drain. Pour off all but 1 teaspoon drippings from skillet. Add asparagus to drippings in skillet; sauté 3 minutes. Add peas, white and pale green parts of green onions, and garlic; sauté until vegetables are just tender, about 2 minutes. Remove from heat.
Add vegetable mixture, dark green parts of green onions, olive oil, lemon juice, lemon peel, half of parsley, and half of basil to pasta. Toss. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to large bowl. Sprinkle pancetta, remaining parsley, and basil over. Serve topped with freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
I wanted to share with you some photos of my most recent trip to Fatty ‘Cue. My good friend Samantha of Krauted Haus was in town from Berlin last week, and, as a fellow foodie, she wanted to try as many places as possible that she had been missing out on since leaving NY. We went back and forth for awhile about whether to go to Fatty ‘Cue or Momofuku Noodle Bar, but, having had Ramen just two nights before (and also one night before for me…) we landed on Fatty ‘Cue.
For those of you who don’t know, Fatty ‘Cue is a restaurant in South Williamsburg that serves a cross between Southeast Asian and American Southern BBQ food. From their website:
“Our goal is to balance quivering fatty morsels of deliciousness with bright citrus notes, fiery chili heat, rich fermented and briny washes and complex, unrefined, natural sweetness. Or, in a less obtuse manner, fun, tasty food! Our two Ole Hickory smokers are the main cooking elements in the restaurant, even providing the bar with many of their condiments”.
I’m gonna have to start using the phrase “quivering fatty morsels of deliciousness” more often.
The minute we sat down and glanced over the menu, Sam said, “Guys, I want to get the Pig’s Head. My friend said they give you rubber gloves and lots of bao buns”. Clearly, that’s all it took to convince us.
Now, Pig’s Head isn’t normally on the menu – you usually have to call ahead and reserve it. We asked him to check if they “had any pig heads just lying around” and our waiter (whose name I don’t think we caught but who was FABULOUS) went into the kitchen and returned with a smirk on his face telling us that indeed they DID have a pig’s head, and if we wanted it, it was ours. We immediately ordered it and they stuck it into the smoker for us. We ordered a couple of appetizers and some blue points, since we had a 45 minute wait. The appetizers we ordered were:
-Dragon Pullman Toast with a Side of Master Fat (yup.)
Ten minutes later, our server showed up to our table with round of gingery shots and a Smoked Catfish Nam Prik – which is essentially a catfish “dip” or “salad” if you will, into which you dip pork rinds, carrots, ginger, etc. He told us it was his favorite dish on the menu and I can see why – the dip is smoky tasting with the texture of whitefish salad, and um, who doesn’t love pork rinds? Upon our waiter’s recommendation, we tried different combinations of pork rinds and veggies to dip it in, and it was amazing.
Ten minutes after we finished that…a bowl of ribs. Apparently we had become the hit of the kitchen, being a table of five 20 something females specifically requesting a pig’s head to eat. The ribs were obviously delicious. Better than you are imagining.
Finally the Pig’s Head arrived (but not before our latex gloves arrived) and I’m not going to go into detail (you have to try it yourself) but I’ll just say that its not for the faint of heart. You really have to “get in there” (phrase of the night) and find the meat. You have to be willing to just embrace the fact that you are eating a pig’s head. Blue Point helps.
All in all, it was a successful dinner out. Megan caught her hair on fire. Amanda had the chicken.