All too often, I hear the same question from home cooks: what do I do with fish? Not terribly much, is usually my answer. And as soon as you bring your catch home. But while most of us know that fresh fish is best at its freshest, the simple feat of cooking it deliciously has evaded some. So I’m going to share my latest favorite preparation, an unlikely hybrid of hearty winter vegetables and summery lightness.
There is a dish in Cantonese cuisine called turnip cake. Then there is a dish with turnip cake, chopped into cubes, and stir-fried with bean sprouts, scallions, some other veggies and often peanuts. I’m quite certain this latter dish was a leftover invention. The very best turnip cake (which is actually made from radish but I’ll get to that later) in my opinion is seared to a beautiful crisped surface, and is soft and mushy on the inside, like glutinous … Read More
It’s here: the 2nd Annual Risotto Challenge! Last spring, eighteen contestants answered this call-to-cooking action with imaginative risottos seemingly spawned while on crack. (The ultimate winner? A citrusy, brown rice “Scarborough Fair” ordeal, named for its profusion of four singsong herbs.) And since there’s never an end to variations on the delicious dish, co-host Karol Lu and I are giving the cook-off another spin — or stir. This time, the event will benefit Just Food, New York City’s local and … Read More
This was the challenge I faced growing up with learning to cook anything too rustic and simple: Time and again, I’d be taken aback by something that my mom had just thrown together. Wow, this is really good, I would say, tasting an eggdrop soup with crunchy scallion bits floating about. Or a stir-fry of julienned potatoes with a dash of white pepper, the starch suspending the sticks in a light, opaque sauce. Or, most recently, this clear soup with … Read More
I’d like to think of this as less a recipe than an olfactory cooking cure. Somewhere along the ranks of boiling a slow-cooked pot of chicken soup — it’s those hours of comforting smells, I’m convinced, that ease the common cold long before its consumption. The savory, sweet and spicy smells emitting from my oven as I baked this helped lift me out of an early spring slump — and eating it didn’t hurt, either.