Super Crunchy Nutty 2-Step Granola

Ah, the good ol’ two-step. Like the dance, this one carries a myriad of variations. Then again, I never did learn the dance, in any style, and now I kind of wonder what happened to that swing and formal dance revival that took hold of the city several years ago. For that matter, what happened to any kind of dance craze? There has been a bit of a granola craze going on as far as I can tell — everywhere … Read More

I Cracked Peppercorn (and does anyone care?)

Being the breadwinner, they say, isn’t always fun. I can think of one exception, however, where that’s pure pish posh: winning the No-Knead Bread-Off at The Brooklyn Kitchen. Alright, I tied for best bread in show, beating out three of the five different loaves made by locals who each took twists on the no-knead bread recipe-turned national bread craze created by Jim Lahey of Sullivan St. Bakery.

Cranberry Curry Chicken Pie with Leftover French Bread Crust

Curry is only optional here. I had begun this dish with the thought of splashing in the remaining cupful or so of white wine I had left in the fridge and maybe sprinkling some rosemary in the pie mixture; instead, I drank the wine. Something in between a mild chicken curry and a stuffing mixture, this meal was a quick alternative to baking a real chicken pot pie. I shouldn’t even call it a pie, really, since the “crust” was … Read More

Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto with Wilted Spinach, Leeks and Chinese Sausage

Congee, you know what I mean? Except not. First, I’ll admit that this was not the most convenient meal to make on a weeknight–but it can be done. Just remember to pop the squash in the oven as soon as possible, then begin the rest of your preparation and cooking. That way it should be soft enough by the time the risotto is ready for it to be added. Timing is everything.

Sour Cream Banana Oatmeal Crunch Bread

The other day my co-workers and I polished this off so quickly that I didn’t even get to snag a picture of the thing. The problem was, I didn’t think to take a picture of it; it was unexpectedly good. So good. Good good good good good. And good for you. I had no such aspirations for it. I don’t recall ever trying to make banana bread before, and I have one highly underdeveloped sense of baking, as seen in … Read More

Parmesan Peppercorn Biscuits

posted in: Grains, Recipes, vegetarian | 4

This probably sounds like a no-brainer trick to use on a basic biscuit recipe: fold in a few of your favorite things. The other day I tasted a sample wedge of cheese, and it was an Italian cheese (parmesan or romano?) that had whole black peppercorns encrusted throughout. It piqued my tastebuds so much that I had to re-enact it in a more palpable form, something that I could literally stuff my face with.

Day of the Dead Bread

posted in: Grains, Ruminations | 12

Sam and Richard had me over on Thursday for some hot toddys and sweets in honor of Day of the Dead. Or night of the dead? It was about 10:30 p.m. when I got there. The drink of choice was toasty hot chocolate made with Mexican dark chocolate and Kalhua.

DJ O’Connor’s Mom’s Squash Rolls

posted in: Grains, Recipes, vegetarian | 14

Thanks DJ, for sharing your mom’s recipe for squash rolls. DJ writes in an email that his mom makes these every Thanksgiving: “Oh and they don’t really end up tasting like squash, which is a major plus because they’re made from freezer squash, which is a cheap replacement for syrup of ipecac if you don’t have any handy.” Had to look that one up too–syrup of ipecac is a gag-inducing serum. Thanks!

Plain Old Fried Rice with Five-Spice Tofu

posted in: Grains, Recipes, vegetarian | 11

I almost winced when reading an “Asian” (fusion, I guess) recipe in a major glossy magazine that called for a Noah’s Ark full of ingredients from all across the world. It was a pork recipe, and just the notion of using fish sauce and Chinese black bean sauce in combination was enough to make my stomach turn, let alone calling for more than three tablespoons of fish sauce period. But the fact that the recipe also included hoisin sauce, sesame … Read More

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