Thursday, October 31

Plum Torte

I am known for making a lot of fruit desserts, so when I told my husband I was going to make another fruit-laden cake he sort of rolled his eyes. But after trying it, we both agreed that this plum torte was one of the best sweets we've had in awhile. Versions of this recipe popped up everywhere (like here and here) a few weeks ago, although the original was posted back in the 80's, and it's easy to see why it was still getting rave reviews. The moist, tender cake is studded with halved plums that bake into soft, jammy puddles. The whole top is sprinkled with cinnamon that adds a nice fall flavor. And it can be easily assembled without any fancy equipment (although I did make this in my turquoise Kitchen-Aid stand mixer that we received for our wedding). It's one of those cakes that you can feel ok about eating for breakfast or dress up with fresh whipped cream for company. Leftovers will keep for at least a few days since the cake is so moist.

Perfect Plum Torte:
  • Whisk together 1 c. all-purpose flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, and a large pinch of salt in a mixing bowl.
  • In another bowl, cream together 8 tbsp. softened butter and 1 c. sugar until light and fluffy.
  • Add in 2 eggs, one at a time, then slowly add in the dry ingredients.
  • Mix until just combined, making sure to scrape down the sides and bottom of the bowl.
  • Pour the cake batter into a greased 9" springform cake pan and smooth the top.
  • Halve and pit 4-6 plums* and lightly press, skin-side up, into the cake batter.
  • Sprinkle the top of the cake with 2 tbsp. lemon juice, then 1 tsp. cinnamon and 1-2 tbsp. of sugar.
  • Bake the cake in a 350F oven for 45-55 minutes, or until a cake tester comes out clean of batter when inserted into the middle of the cake.
  • Let cool for 15 minutes, then remove from the pan and transfer to a baking rack to finish cooling.
  • Serve warm or at room temperature.

Serves eight
*I used 4 large plums and ended up cutting them into quarters.

Wednesday, October 30

Tofu & Vegetable Stir-Fry

My husband just got a well-deserved promotion at work and we spent the last few days celebrating with all of his favorite things, like cheeseburgers (and a brand new car!). This stir-fry, which I adapted from William-Sonoma's 365 Vegetables cookbook,  is my attempt at layering in something lighter among all the red meat. The slightly crunchy vegetables and golden cubes of tofu are tossed in a sweet, spicy, tangy sauce. My new technique of pressing the tofu between a book squeezes out any excess water and allows the tofu to get a golden brown crust and firm texture that contrasts nicely with the mixed veg. It's a healthy meal that will fill you up and make you feel good (and also less guilty about eating some Halloween candy for dessert).

Tofu & Vegetable Stir-Fry:
  • Place 14 oz. of firm tofu between several sheets of paper towels and place a heavy book on top to squeeze out any excess water.
  • Dice tofu into 1" cubes and dust with cornstarch.
  • Heat 1 tbsp. canola oil in a large skillet or wok until very hot and add in the tofu.
  • Cook for 3-4 minutes, then carefully turn and cook for another few minutes, or until golden brown.
  • Remove the tofu and set aside and coat the pan with a little more oil.
  • Add in 1 thinly sliced onion, 1 thinly sliced bell pepper, and 1 tbsp. minced ginger and cook for a minute.
  • Add in 1 sliced zucchini, 1/2 lb. snow peas, and 3 minced garlic cloves. Season with a pinch of salt and 1/2 tsp. Chinese five spice powder.
  • Stir to combine, then add in 3 tbsp. low-sodium vegetable or chicken stock.
  • Add the tofu back, along with 3 tbsp. hoisin sauce, 1 tbsp. soy sauce, and 1-2 tsp. Sriracha hot sauce.
  • Cook for 2-3 minutes, or until vegetables are crisp tender, then turn off the heat.
  • Stir in a dash of rice vinegar and a dash of sesame oil.
  • Serve with steamed rice.

Serves four

Friday, October 25

Baked Penne with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe

Our friends just had their first baby and we couldn't be more excited for them. This is the first couple in our L.A. circle to get pregnant and it's been amazing to watch their journey and take notes on the whole experience. Both of their families live out of state, so I decided to whip up a few meals for them to enjoy while mom, dad, and daughter recover from the birth. This pasta is a recent Smitten Kitchen recipe and was perfect since it can feed an army or be frozen and/or reheated without compromising the dish. It's full of gooey cheese and bechamel, pepper broccoli rabe, and crispy nuggets of sausage and is the perfect comfort meal. Note: I made a huge amount so we'd have enough to make two large pans of (one for them, one for us). The recipe can easily be halved for a more standard portion.

Baked Penne with Sausage & Broccoli Rabe:
  • Bring a large pot of water to a boil, season with salt, and cook 2 lb. of penne pasta 1-2 minutes short of package directions. Five minutes before pasta is done, add in 2 heads of roughly chopped broccoli rabe.*
  • Meanwhile, add 2 lbs. of Italian pork sausage to a skillet, breaking up with the back of the spoon until crumbled.
  • Cook sausage until brown, then remove with a slotted spoon.
  • You should have 2 tbsp. of pork fat left in the pan.** Add in 6 tbsp. of butter and melt, then whisk in 1/2 c. flour until smooth.
  • Slowly whisk in 5 c. milk until smooth and slightly thickened, then add in 4 cloves of minced garlic and a large pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Let sauce simmer for 8 minutes, or until thickened.
  • Drain pasta and broccoli rabe and toss with the sausage, the bechamel, 1 lb. diced mozzarella cheese, and 1/2 c. grated Parmesan cheese until everything is combined.
  • Divide pasta into two large baking dishes and sprinkle the top with a little extra grated Parmesan.
  • Bake pasta in a 400F oven for 35 minutes, or until browned and bubbling.
  • Let cool for a few minutes, then spoon onto plates. Serve with red chili flakes.

Serves eight
*If you don't have a pot big enough to fit everything, you can use two separate pots or drain the pasta and then do the vegetables. If you can't find broccoli rabe you can substitute broccolini.
**If not, add more butter until you have 2 tbsp.

Wednesday, October 23

Tomato Soup

A lot can be said about the superiority of fresh tomatoes, but for tomato soup, canned are the way to go. For one, canned tomatoes are always consistent, ensuring that the soup will taste just as good batch after batch. And since good tomato soup is still best used as a vehicle for grilled cheese there's no use in spending a ton of money on fresh ones. Compared to most soups, this version only requires a few ingredients that many cooks already keep in their pantry and fridge. Throwing it together is a snap, and leftovers can be frozen for a few months so that a quick, healthy meal in always on hand.

Tomato Soup:
  • Melt 4 tbsp. butter and 4 tbsp. olive oil in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add in 2 diced onions and 4 minced garlic cloves and cook for 10 minutes, or until soft but not brown. Season with a few large pinches of salt and pepper.
  • Stir in 1 tbsp. tomato paste and cook for a minute, then stir in 5 c. low sodium chicken stock and 42 oz. canned whole plum tomatoes.
  • Add in a pinch of red chile flakes, then bring to a boil.
  • Lower soup to a simmer and cook for 20-30 minutes.
  • Puree soup until smooth, then adjust seasoning as necessary.

Serves eight-ten

Tuesday, October 22

Pot Roast

Part of my love of cooking comes from discovering new things, which is pretty obvious given the 600 recipes I've catalogued on this site. New can mean trying some exotic cuisine, my first time cooking tofu, or even "traditional" dishes that I somehow missed growing up. Which leads me to pot roast. Although it's a classic for most American families, I never grew up with it and this was my first attempt at cooking it. This recipe is just slightly adapted (more out of convenience than creativity) from the Barefoot Contesssa and was incredibly easy and flavorful. I didn't have much to compare it to, but according to my husband most pot roast is shredded rather than sliced. If that's your preference, just cook it longer until the meat is tender enough to shred. Either way, the rich velvety sauce will blow your mind.

Pot Roast:
  • Heat 2 tbsp. olive oil in a large heavy pot or Dutch oven until very hot and nearly smoking.
  • Meanwhile, season a 3 lb. beef shoulder roast* very generously with salt and pepper and lightly dredge in flour, shaking off any excess.
  • Add the meat to the pan and sear for 4-5 minutes per side, or until darkly browned.**
  • Remove the meat and set aside, then reduce the heat to medium and add 2 more tbsp. oil to the pot.
  • Add in 1 bunch of carrots, cut into 1" long pieces, 2 diced onions, 2 diced celery stalks, and a large pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Cook the vegetables for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until softened but not brown.
  • Add in 2 c. of red wine and 2 tbsp. brandy, scraping the bottom of the pan.
  • Bring the liquid to a boil, then add in 14 oz. canned whole plum tomatoes, 1 c. beef stock, 3 large sprigs of rosemary, and another big pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Put the beef back in the pot and cover with a lid. Place the pot in a 325F oven.
  • Cook for an hour, then flip the roast so the top side gets submerged, and lower the heat to 250F.
  • Cook for another 60-90 minutes, or until the meat is very tender.
  • Remove the beef from the pot and spoon any fat off the top of the sauce.
  • Puree half of the sauce in a blender and return to the pot, along with 1 tbsp. butter that's been mashed with 2 tbsp. flour.
  • Stir the butter mixture into the pot and let the sauce simmer for 5-10 minutes, or until thickened.
  • Check the sauce for seasoning, then slice the roast and pour sauce on top.

Serves six
*Or chuck roast or something similar.
**Do not rush this step, it develops a ton of flavor.

Thursday, October 17

Pumpkin Soup

Every year the rest of the country begins celebrating fall with changing leaves, cooler weather, and big hearty meals, but L.A. doesn't start experiencing cold temperatures until well after Thanksgiving. This year I was determined not to miss out on the festivities and have started testing out new autumnal dishes despite the 80 degree heat. This pumpkin soup is an adaptation from a recipe in my new favorite cookbook, William Sonoma's Vegetable of the Day. It calls for canned pumpkin, making it a super cheap and fast meal that's definitely weeknight friendly. I was determined not to let the soup get too sweet or reminiscent of pumpkin pie, so it's blended with savory vegetables and herbs and has a mild kick from cayenne pepper. It's perfect for a light meal (I've been eating it for lunch most of the week) and is already a contender for inclusion at this year's Thanksgiving meal.

Pumpkin Soup:
  • Melt 3 tbsp. butter in a large pot over medium-high heat.
  • Add in 1 diced onion, 2 diced celery stalks, and 1 tbsp. minced rosemary. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Cook vegetables for 8-10 minutes, or until soft but not brown.
  • Stir in 3 minced garlic cloves and cook for another minute.
  • Add in 1/2 c. white wine and let reduce for a few minutes, or until half has evaporated.
  • Mix in two 15 oz. cans of pumpkin puree* and 3 c. of chicken broth and stir until smooth.
  • Bring soup to a boil, lower to a simmer, and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Stir in 4 tbsp. real maple syrup, 1 pinch of cayenne pepper, and another big pinch of salt and pepper.
  • Blend soup in a blender or food processor until smooth, then transfer back to the pot.
  • Stir in 1/2 c. heavy cream and check for seasoning.
  • To serve, ladle into bowls and garnish with toasted pumpkin seeds or croutons.

Serves four (main course)
Serves eight (appetizer)
*Preferably organic. Make sure this is plain canned pumpkin and NOT pumpkin pie filling.

Wednesday, October 16

Falafel-Inspired Quinoa Cakes

I've featured previous recipes for quinoa cakes before, but this falafel-inspired version is totally new. I used some of my favorite Mediterranean flavors: fresh herbs, spices, and feta cheese to give the patties a distinctive green color and falafel-like taste. Also, unlike my previous recipe, this version is baked in the oven rather than pan-fried and I shaped them into smaller two-to-three bites morsels so that I could easily tuck them into a pita pocket for an easy, portable sandwich. Feel free to enjoy the anyway you like, but they pair really well with a creamy yogurt sauce like tzatziki.

Falafel-Inspired Quinoa Cakes:
  • Combine 1 c. quinoa and 1 3/4 c. water in a pot. Bring to a boil, lower to simmer, and cook for 15-25 minutes, or until tender and the water has been absorbed.* Let cool.**
  • Meanwhile, use a mortar and pestle (or food processor) to mash 1/2 c. parsley leaves, 2 cloves of garlic, and a pinch of salt into a paste.
  • Add the quinoa to a bowl, along with 3 lightly beaten eggs, 1/4 c. panko breadcrumbs, the parsley mixture, the zest and juice of 1/2 lemon, 1 tsp. ground cumin, 1 tsp. ground coriander, a pinch of red chile flakes, salt, and pepper.
  • Stir to combine, then fold in 3 oz. crumbled feta cheese.
  • Spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray and place heaping 1 tbsp. quinoa patties*** onto the sheet.
  • Bake in 375F oven for 10-12 minutes, the flip and cook the patties for another 8-10 minutes.
  • Let cool slightly, then serve with tzatziki, pita bread, etc.

Serves four
*Drain any excess water if it doesn't all get absorbed.
**Quinoa can be cooked, cooled, and stored in the fridge several days in advance.
***I roll the quinoa into balls and then press lightly onto the cookie sheet to flatten.

Tuesday, October 15

Cajun Chicken Pasta

Bow-tie pasta, chicken, and vegetables tossed in a spicy cream sauce

Cajun Chicken Pasta

There's nothing better than coming home from work on a cool evening and digging into a warm bowl of rich, hearty pasta. It finally started feeling like fall last week (although temps have bounced back up today) and I started breaking out all the comfort food ideas that I've been saving since summer. This pasta, which I modeled after my favorite dish at the Cheesecake Factory and this Pioneer Woman recipe, is full of sauteed veggies and golden pieces of chicken, all tossed in creamy sauce. I liberally added a homemade Cajun seasoning blend which adds a nice amount of spice and flavor compared to standard cream sauces. It's the perfect one pot meal and leftovers reheat great the next day.

Related Recipes:
- Chicken, Shrimp, & Sausage Jambalaya
- Smothered Chicken
- Baked Macaroni & Cheese

Cajun Chicken Pasta:
  • Mix together 2 tsp. kosher salt, 2 tsp. ground cumin, 2 tsp. paprika, 2 tsp. garlic powder, 2 tsp. chile powder, and 1 tsp. cayenne pepper.*
  • Sprinkle most of the spice mixture over 2 diced boneless, skinless chicken breasts and stir to evenly coat the meat.
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook 1 lb. bowtie pasta until al dente.
  • Heat 2 tbsp. butter and 1 tbsp. oil in a large pot and add in the chicken.
  • Cook, stirring occasionally, for 4-5 minutes, or until golden and cooked through.
  • Use a slotted spoon to remove the chicken, then add in 2 diced bell peppers, 1 diced red onion, 1 diced jalapeno pepper, 1 c. diced mushrooms, and the remaining spice mixture.
  • Cook the vegetables until soft, about 5-8 minutes, then remove with a slotted spoon.
  • Add in 1/2 c. white wine and reduce for a few minutes, scraping up the brown bits from the bottom of the pan.
  • Add in 1 c. chicken broth and boil and reduce for a few minutes.
  • Add in 1 c. heavy cream and the cooked chicken and vegetables.
  • Drain the pasta and add to the pot, then stir over low heat for a few minutes, until the pasta absorbs most of the sauce.
  • Divide onto plates and sprinkle with fresh basil.

Serves four
*Or use whatever Cajun seasoning blend you like best.

Monday, October 14

Croque Madames

Croque madames (fancy French ham and cheese sandwiches) are one of my ultimate comfort foods. I had my fair share in Paris for our honeymoon and order them whenever possible at local restaurants, but this was my first time making them at home. Since the recipe (adapted from here) is fairly simple and only requires a few ingredients, it really makes a difference to use the best quality that you can find. I purchased some amazing country bread from a local bakery, nutty gruyere cheese, my favorite Dijon mustard, and a delicious smoked ham for this. I've seen croques come stacked like a real sandwich, but I like to layer everything on one slice of bread and eat it open faced. The gooey cheese and bechamel, flavorful ham, runny egg, and crunchy bread make the perfect brunch or indulgent dinner. Enjoy with a glass of wine and pretend that you're at Les Deux Magots in Paris.

Croque Madames:
  • Melt 1 1/2 tbsp. butter in a small sauce pot.
  • Whisk in 1/2 tbsp. flour until smooth and slightly thickened, about 1 minute.
  • Whisk in 1 c. milk and bring to a boil, then lower to a simmer and cook for 5 minutes, whisking often, until thickened.
  • Season the bechamel sauce with a pinch of salt and pepper, then whisk in 1/4 c. grated Parmesan and 1/3 c. grated gruyere cheese until just melted.
  • Meanwhile, arrange 4 slices of country bread* on a baking sheet and cook under a broiler until lightly toasted.
  • Remove the bread from the broiler and turn toasted-side down.
  • Spread the top side with a thin layer of Dijon mustard, then layer 2 thin slices of ham on top.
  • Divide the bechamel sauce on top of each layer of ham and spread evenly, then sprinkle each sandwich with 1/4 c. grated gruyere cheese.
  • Cook the sandwiches under the broiler for a few minutes, or until cheese is bubbling and starting to brown in some areas.
  • Meanwhile, fry 4 eggs sunny side up.
  • Top each croque with an egg and sprinkle with fresh thyme. Serve immediately.

Serves four
*Pan de mie or any other hearty, crusty white bread will work.

Thursday, October 10

Fig, Duck Confit, & Mixed Green Salad

Fig season pretty much came and went this year without me noticing. We've been doing a lot of traveling lately and our weekly trips to the farmers market have been much more infrequent, thus we've been eating much less seasonal produce. I was able to find a remaining basket of perfect figs and put it to use in this Parisian salad. The sweet caramelized fruit, rich duck (leftover from this recipe), and peppery greens perfectly compliment each other. We ate this as an early dinner (on the table 15 minutes after we came home from work) with a bottle of wine and a nice buttered baguette and it transported us back to France.

Mixed Green Salad with Duck Confit & Caramelized Figs:
  • In a small bowl, whisk together 1 minced shallot, 1 tsp. Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp. red wine vinegar, 1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar, salt, and pepper.
  • Slowly whisk in 1/4 c. extra virgin olive oil and set aside.
  • Meanwhile, heat 1 tbsp. duck fat* in a small skillet over medium-high heat.
  • Halve 6-8 figs and cook, flesh side down, for a few minutes until starting to caramelize.
  • Toss 3-4 large handful of wild arugula and 2 heads of chopped endive, cores discarded, in a bowl with some of the dressing.
  • Scatter the figs on top and the meat from 2 legs of duck confit.
  • Drizzle a little more dressing on top and serve.**

Serves two (main course)
Serves four-six (appetizer)
*Or butter or oil.
**You can also add a little goat cheese or blue cheese if you want.

Wednesday, October 9

Easy Duck Confit

Duck is one of my absolute favorite meats. Usually I pan roast the breasts until the skin gets crispy and serve it with some sort of sauce, but this duck confit is my new favorite way to prepare it. The dish has a super fancy reputation because the traditional way to cook it is a very involved process but this new method yields nearly identical results with just a few simple steps. Add the duck legs to a small pot with a little water, cook in the oven for several hours, flip, and roast until golden. You'll be left with tender, melt-in-your mouth meat, crispy skin, and a ton of leftover duck fat. I served them with figs that I caramelized in some rendered fat and saved leftovers for shredding into salads, tacos, etc.

Easy Duck Confit:
  • Pierce the skin of 4 duck legs with a sharp knife, then season generously with salt and pepper.
  • Nestle the duck legs, skin-side down, in a small pot and cover with scant 1/4 c. water. Place a lid on the pot.
  • Roast the legs in a 250F oven for 1 1/2 hours, then flip skin-side up and roast for another 1 hour.*
  • Transfer the legs to a baking sheet and increase the oven to 425F.
  • Roast legs for an additional 30 minutes, or until duck is crispy and golden brown.
  • Strain rendered fat and keep in an air-tight container to use as desired.**

Serves two-four
*The duck will render out a ton of fat while it cooks. Make sure the duck stays nestled in the fat.
**Duck fat will keep for a couple weeks in the fridge or a couple months in the freezer.

Tuesday, October 8

Sweet Potato Cakes with Creamy Herb Dip

L.A. is a little behind on the changing of the seasons. Summer produce finally disappeared from our markets, but it just feels weird to start roasting squash and making slow-cooked braises when it's so warm outside. These sweet potato cakes, which I adapted from a recipe in Ottelenghi's Plenty, are a nice transition dish since it takes a traditional fall vegetable and pairs it with a bright flavor profile. The sweet potatoes turn savory with the addition of soy sauce, scallions, and jalapenos and are cooled down by the tangy yogurt sauce. It makes for a great appetizer or nice light meal alongside a green salad.

Sweet Potato Cakes with Creamy Herb Dip:
For Dip
  • Whisk together 1/4 c. Greek yogurt, 1/4 c. sour cream, 2 tbsp. minced scallions, the juice of 1/2 lemon, salt, and pepper.
  • Set aside, or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 days.
For Cakes
  • Peel and dice 3 large sweet potatoes, then steam for 20 minutes, or until very tender.
  • Let potatoes drain for 30 minutes over a colander.*
  • Add the potatoes to a mixing bowl along with 1/2 minced jalapeƱo, 3 minced scallions, 1 tsp. kosher salt, 2 tsp. soy sauce, and 3/4 c. all-purpose flour.
  • Use your hands to combine everything, breaking up the potatoes until the whole mixture is smooth.**
  • Heat a skillet over medium-high heat and add in 2 tbsp. butter and 2 tbsp. canola oil.
  • Spoon heaping tbsp. of batter into the pan and flatten into disks.
  • Cook cakes for 4-5 minutes per side, or until darkly browned.
  • Repeat with remaining batter until all cakes are done cooking.
  • Serve immediately with dipping sauce.

Serves four (appetizer)
*Potatoes can be cooked, drained, and kept in the fridge a few days in advance.
**The batter should be pretty dry. If it's too sticky, ad a little more flour.

Wednesday, October 2

Roasted Chili & Cheese Egg Bake

I’m addicted to the Pioneer Woman – not just for her simple recipes, but for her life on a ranch “in the middle of nowhere” and her cute family and animals. Her food leans towards the heavier side, but this dish has a nice balance of heat and richness. I adapted the original recipe quite a bit and used fresh roasted hatch chiles (in season now) and a simplified baking method. With only a few ingredients and a quick trip to the oven, you’ll have an easy and satisfying breakfast that works just as well for two people as it does for a crowd (the recipe can easily be doubled or tripled). Feel free to get fancy with the garnishes: fresh cilantro, sliced avocado, and salsa would be a great additions.

Roasted Chili & Cheese Egg Bake:
  • Roast 4-5 hatch chiles* under a broiler or gas grill until the skin gets completely charred.
  • Place chiles in a bag to steam for 10 minutes, then rub off the skins and pull out the stem and seeds.
  • Open chiles up so they lay flat and place half in an even layer in a small baking dish.
  • Sprinkle the top with 1/2 c. grated Monterey Jack cheese, then repeat with another layer of chiles and cheese.
  • Meanwhile, beat together 4 eggs and 1/2 c. milk until smooth. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the chiles and cheese and bake in a 350F oven for 30-35 minutes, or until eggs are set and slightly jiggly in the center.
  • Let cool slightly, then cut the eggs into squares and serve on top of warm corn tortillas.

Serves three-four
*Or any other medium-spicy chile. Chiles can be charred and seeded days in advance and kept in the fridge or months in advance and kept in the freezer.

Tuesday, October 1

Kale Ribbon Salad with Parmesan & Garlic Vinaigrette

A heartier, healthier take on a classic Caesar salad

Kale Salad with Parmesan and Garlic Vinaigrette

I originally featured a version of this salad about a year ago and have been tweaking the recipe ever since. I eat a lot of kale and have put all my tips and tricks into this salad. One, raw kale really needs to be thinly sliced with all the tough center ribs removed. It might be easier just to buy the chopped bag of kale from the supermarket, but it won't taste nearly as good. The dressing uses a whole head of garlic (it mellows out when roasted), but kale needs a potent dressing to stand up to its tough leaves. I like to use my hands to toss the salad together and massage the vinaigrette into the greens. Add in some homemade croutons and grated Parmesan (I like to grate a big block in the large holes of a box grater) and it's my ultimate side salad. Leftovers will keep for a day as long as the croutons are kept separate.

Related Recipes:
- Kale Salad with Roasted Garlic Vinaigrette
- Quick Braised Kale with Gouda & Shallots
- Kale, Onion, & Potato Pot Pies

Kale Ribbon Salad with Parmesan & Garlic Vinaigrette:
For Dressing
  • Slice the top off of 1 head of garlic and wrap the whole thing in foil.
  • Cook in 300F oven for 35-45 minutes, or until the garlic is super soft and roasted.*
  • Let cool for a few minutes, then squeeze the cloves into a bowl and mash into a paste with a pinch of kosher salt.
  • Whisk the juice of 1 lemon into garlic paste until smooth, then whisk in 3-4 tbsp. of extra virgin olive oil.
For Salad
  • Cut 1 small baguette into 3/4" dice, toss with 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, then cook in a 350F oven for 10-15 minutes, or until lightly golden. Let the croutons cool slightly.**
  • Meanwhile, wash 2 heads of kale,*** remove the center ribs, then stack and roll up and cut into ribbons.
  • Toss the kale with the croutons, the dressing, and 1/4 c. grated Parmesan cheese.
  • Season with freshly cracked black pepper and serve.

Serves two (light meal)
Serves four (side dish)
*Garlic can be roasted a few days in advance and kept in the fridge.
**Croutons can be made a few days in advance and kept in an airtight container.
***I use black/dino/lacinato/Tuscan kale.