This might be the best thing I’ve ever eaten. Do it all summer long while the corn is sweet and the nights are warm enough to grill (except for here in San Francisco). If there is leftover corn, cut off the kernels and toss with chopped avocado, red cabbage, olive oil and a few squeezes of lime juice.
cotija cheese, small package, crumbled in serving bowl
Husk corn down to innermost layer. Slather with butter, sprinkle salt and pepper and press husk back on ear so corn is protected by one layer. This task should be delegated to people lazing about outside on lawn chairs.
Stir creme fraiche or sour cream together with smoked paprika, chile powder, juice of the lime and salt. Chill in refrigerator until ready to serve.
Grill corn with husk on until husk is charred and corn acquires some nice grill marks.
Pull off remaining husks, spoon on lime crema and top with crumbled cotija cheese.
In Like Water for Chocolate, cooks cast special spells using chocolate as an elixer. Instead of creating gold, they created passion. The cayenne in this love potion is sure to heat up the chemistry between you and your special someone this Valentine’s Day, so you can tango until it’s time to siesta.
During peach season, I eat 2-3 peaches a day. I buy them by the case at the farmer’s market from a stand that brings them direct from Palisades. This salsa is excellent with fish and chicken, though sometime for lunch, I just eat it by the spoonful. Adjust the heat by increasing or decreasing the amount of jalapeno. Have a peachy day!
grated cheddar cheese (we like hot habanero cheddar)
loaf of crusty rustic bread (or sour dough)
Place chicken in large skillet. Add enough water to cover chicken, and bring to boil. Reduce heat, and simmer until cooked (about 10-15 minutes). Drain chicken; cool slightly. Coarsely shred meat. (Can be made a day ahead, covered and refrigerated.)
Heat oil in heavy large pot over medium-high heat. Add onions and sauté until tender, about 10 minutes. Add garlic, green pepper, red pepper, and jalapeño. Saute 1 minute. Mix in chili powder, cumin, oregano and coriander. Add tomatoes and broth. Bring to simmer, breaking tomatoes with wooden spoon. Simmer over medium/low heat for about 1 hour to blend flavors, stirring occasionally.
Add beans and shredded chicken to chili. Simmer uncovered until chili thickens, stirring occasionally, (about 30 minutes).
Ladle chili into bowls. Top with shredded cheese. Serve with thickly sliced bread (and/or carrots and celery).
Quinoa has a great texture, nutty flavor, and unlike most grains, is high in protein. Also, it is fat burning and heart healthy. So, make a little extra than the recipe calls for and throw some in whatever you are making. Soup, salad, tacos, smoothie. Whatever.
This is one of my favorite summertime sides. The secret is in preparing the quinoa. Make sure to soak it, so that it’s not bitter, and don’t overcook it so that it’s not mushy. It’s a great salad to bring along to a friends BBQ—the perfect complement to ribs, and also goes well with chicken and burgers. And like I said before, its good for you!
Driving through the sleepy little town of Petaluma, California, known for its eggs and dairy, you might see no reason to pull into an undistinguished strip mall. Way in the back left corner of the parking lot, near Leo’s Vacuum Cleaners and a deserted nail salon, sits a diamond in the rough called Dempsy’s Brewery. First surprise—the charming atmosphere. If it’s warm, sit outside overlooking the Petaluma River. In inclement weather, my first choice is the comfortable worn wooden booth directly across from the kitchen window, permitting a preview of outgoing dishes punctuated with lively shouts of “mas papas fritas, por favor!” and “con tomate!” Second, the beer rocks, with a selection of ales including their classic Red Rooster, Irish Ale and Ugly Dog Stout plus a variety of intriguing seasonal offerings. Stop by the bar and refill your jug for later that evening. We did. What more can you expect from a brewery—perhaps a pile of Buffalo wings or potato skins? That’s where the tertiary layer of this unassuming treasure comes in; the food transcends brew pub fare and rises to the level of some of the best restaurants in the San Francisco Bay Area. Seasonal produce from the owner’s own farm star in imaginative combinations from all ethnicities. The menu changes daily, and might include a Mexican posole, a Greek hummus plate, or a mixed plate of little gems like fresh caperberries, home made flat bread and beet salad. Determined to recreate a orange/chipolte pork sandwich served with cole slaw on soft potato bread I interrogated various waiters and cooking staff, extracting one or two ingredients from each. We improvised the rest, and although it’s not an exact recreation, came up with this equally flavorful rendition.
Not merely turkey redux, but a whole new animal. Transports you from Plymouth to Oaxaca. This is adapted from Mark Bittman and was printed in the San Francisco Chronicle a few years ago. He started with fresh turkey legs; I use my leftover turkey meat from Thanksgiving. Muy sabroso!
Soak ancho or other mild chili in hot water to cover. Once softened, remove from water and remove stems and seeds. Set aside.
Heat half the oil at medium-high in heavy skillet or casserole that can later be covered. Add hot chili and onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion begins to soften, about 3-5 minutes. Add almonds, salt, pepper, garlic, tomatoes, cinnamon, cloves, mild chiles, vinegar and half the stock. Cook, stirring occasionally, until tomatoes begin to break down. Cool slightly (or for several hours) then puree in blender. Add remaining stock as needed to allow the blender to do its work. Taste, and add more salt, pepper and vinegar to taste.
Shred turkey (or use whole legs), and add to mole until heated throughout.
Last weekend, I attended a grilling demonstration at the 8100 Mountainside Bar and Grill in the Park Hyatt in Beaver Creek, CO. Pascal and Reese, the Executive Chef and Chef de Cuisine for the restaurant, prepared this salsa to serve with salmon. It would also be an excellent complement to chicken. Watermelon is one of my favorite fruits… and this is now my favorite salsa.
They will be holding 3 more grilling exhibitions throughout the summer (July 25th, August 8th, and August 15th). If you are in the Vail Valley, stop by the Park Hyatt in Beaver Creek and sample some delectable morsels with expertly chosen pairings while picking up great culinary tips in an idyllic setting. The demonstration starts at 4:30 on the patio.