Balsamic Slaw

Cut half a red cabbage into medium-thick shredded strips. Place in a large bowl. Add long-cut medium-thick strips of carrots. About 3:1 cabbage to carrots. Add 6 thinly sliced scallions, white ends with some of the green.

Add 1/2 cup + to taste Balsamic vinegar. Fini brand is great. Add 1 tbs. Dijon mustard. Season with celery salt and a generous amount of ground black pepper.

Toss thoroughly with 2 forks and serve at room temperature with your favorite grilled steak or burger.

Brussel Sprouts 2 Ways

Roasted

Trim & cut brussel sprouts in half lengthwise. In a bowl, toss the sprouts in a little olive oil, sea salt, garlic powder & ground black pepper. Place sprouts on a baking sheet and roast in a preheated 400 degree oven for about 15-20 minutes, until brown and crispy. They will be soft and sweet inside.

Carmelized

Trim brussel sprouts, cut very large ones in half, otherwise keep whole. In a large saucepan, cover the brussel sprouts with cold water and add a dash of sea salt. Cover and bring to boil. Uncover and let boil down until all the water is gone. Add 2+ pats butter and ground black pepper and stir the brussel sprouts on medium high heat until butter is brown. A softer nuttier taste than roasted.

Chili Chatsylu

Chili for those who are onion-averse. Created for Alison.

Serves 8+

Clean, trim & rough chop 4  jalapeño peppers, 3 red, orange or yellow bell peppers. In a large stockpot, heat olive oil to coat bottom of pan over medium high heat and brown the peppers. Sprinkle with garlic powder, ground black pepper, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1/8 tsp. cayenne, 1/4 tsp. sea salt. Add 2 lbs. ground pork/beef mix. Brown thoroughly until meat crumbles. Add 2 cloves finely chopped garlic, 1/2 tsp. cumin, 1/8 tsp cayenne, 1/4 tsp. sea salt. Stir meat and peppers together. Keep heat at medium high.

Drain 2 cans low sodium black beans and 2 cans low sodium red kidney beans. Add to pot and stir. Add 1 can San Marzano whole tomatoes. Chop tomatoes with a wooden spoon and stir. Season with 1 tsp. cumin and 1/4 tsp. cayenne, finishing salt and ground black pepper to taste. Add 2 jars –

Desert Pepper Trading Company Roasted Tomato Chipotle Corn Salsa medium hot.

Any chunky salsa with corn will do, but this is the best balanced. Stir. Cover and bring to a boil.

Turn to low heat and simmer covered for an hour. Uncover and stir. Simmer uncovered for at least another 2 hours until thickens. Stir occasionally. Check for seasoning, add more cayenne for muy picante and a little finishing salt. Bring back to boil and then simmer uncovered for another 30 minutes.

Serve in bowls topped with shredded cheddar/jack cheese blend. Garnish with chopped radishes. Or put some chili on a grilled hot dog.

 

Note: Although salsas may typically have some onions, they are not predominant so can make a choice based on that.

 

Dr. G’s Veal Rib Chops

Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Pat veal rib chops dry. Season with ground black pepper and garlic powder.

 

Lightly coat the bottom of a sauté pan with olive oil and place it on the stovetop over medium high heat.  Once the pan is hot add the chops and sear – about 5 minutes on each side. Place the pan in the preheated oven for 8-10 minutes depending on thickness of the chops. Goal is slightly pink medium rare (internal temperature of 135-140 degrees before resting).

 

Remove the pan from the oven and place the chops on a clean plate to rest for 5 minutes.

 

 

While the chops are resting, place the sauté pan containing the juices and cracklings back on the stove on medium heat. Deglaze with a little Balsamic vinegar and stir scraping the cooked bits from the bottom of the pan. Add to the pan 2 large pats of butter and 1/2 cup Stonewall Kitchen Vidalia Onion Fig Sauce and stir well.  Bring the sauce to a slight boil and turn off the heat.

Plate chop and spoon sauce on top, with a potato pancake and roasted asparagus.

 

– Gary Levine

Croque-Carol

Croque-Monsieur is a grilled cheese & ham sandwich. Croque-Madame the same with an added fried egg on top. I have been loving a Croque-Carol to take advantage of tender Spring asparagus.

 

 

Steam fresh asparagus spears. Chill. When ready to cook, bring to room temperature. Can use a few for each sandwich.

Place a piece of 7-grain bread in a metal pie pan. Add thin slices of mild cheddar cheese and top with the fresh asparagus spears. Place under a broiler until crust is crispy and cheese is melted. Cut into squares.

A perfect lunch with a lemon fizz – lemon juice & sparkling water.

No need for ham. But you could.

Teriyaki Pork Tenderloin Cutlets

Pork tenderloin is a highly versatile cut of meat.  When cut crosswise and pounded into cutlets it can be treated like a veal cutlet. In this case a sesame ginger teriyaki marinade gave it an Asian flavor.

Cut a 1 lb. pork tenderloin into crosswise pieces of about 1 1/2″ each. Pound each piece into a cutlet of 3/8″. Place the cutlets in a bowl and coat with a sesame ginger teriyaki sauce. Cover and marinate for 4 hours+.

Make light brown rice so that it will be ready when cutlets are finished cooking.

When ready to cook, bring cutlets to room temperature and pat them dry, removing the marinade. Set aside. In a cast iron skillet, add 1-2 tbsp of olive oil to coat the bottom of the pan and brown 1 bell pepper julienned and 1 small onion cut into 1/4″ thick half-moon slices. Season with ground black pepper and garlic powder to taste (3-4 mins). Set aside on a plate.

Add a little more olive oil to the skillet and brown the cutlets on each side, about 4 minutes per side. Remove from pan and set aside on a separate plate.

 

 

Transfer the cooked rice into the skillet on low heat to soak up the juices and cooked bits. Add 2 tbsp sesame oil, 1/2 cup fresh teriyaki ginger sesame sauce. Stir over low heat until the rice is heated and the sauce distributed. Add the peppers and onions into the skillet and mix into the rice and sauce.

Serve 2 cutlets per serving with the rice, onions, peppers and teriyaki sauce.

 

 

– Gary Levine

4 Zucchini – 2 Meals

ZUCCHINI FRITTERS

 

 

2 medium zucchini
1 bell pepper, diced
1/2 tsp. salt

Into a colander, grate zucchini (peeled or partially peeled) on medium holes of box grater. Add diced bell pepper and salt. Let stand in colander for 10 minutes to render moisture. Wring out water with cheesecloth or paper towel.

Mix together:

1/3 cup all purpose flour
kosher salt
ground black pepper
pepperoncini flakes
1 beaten egg
1/3 cup grated parmesan
2 cloves minced garlic

Add grated zucchini and diced bell pepper and blend well.

In a large skillet, with olive oil to coat and a little butter on medium high heat, ladle the mixture into round mounds with a tablespoon and fry on both sides until golden brown & crispy on the outside. Let cool. Refrigerate to reheat later.

 

 

Note: If I had scallions, I would have added them, thinly sliced as well.

 

 

ZUCCHINI LASAGNA

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Cut 2 zucchini crosswise in half. Trim off the ends. Slice lengthwise into thin flat strips. Slice 6-8 mushrooms.

In a small bowl, beat together 1 cup ricotta and 1 egg, dry basil to taste. Slice 1 cup fresh mozzarella cheese.

Use a non-stick loaf pan. Cover the bottom of the pan with your favorite marinara sauce. Add half the zucchini strips, half the mushrooms. Season with dried oregano and ground black pepper. Spoon half the ricotta in dollops over the zucchini & mushrooms. Add half the mozzarella cheese. Pour marinara sauce on top to cover all the vegetables and cheese.

Repeat layering the rest of the zucchini, mushrooms, season again. Add the rest of the ricotta in dollops and mozzarella. Top with another covering of marinara sauce. Sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.

Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour. Remove from oven and let set or refrigerate covered for next day reheat.

 

 

 

Note:  Could brown ground beef in a skillet, let cool and then add it as a meat layer. Also, leftover cooked veal or pork chop cut into small pieces.

 

Baked Chicken Tikka

Stonewall Kitchen Tikka Masala Simmering Sauce is the base. In a large bowl pour half a jar with 1 tbs. plain yogurt. Blend. Add 4 chicken thighs and coat with the sauce. Cover and refrigerate for a few hours or overnight.

When ready to cook, take chicken out of the fridge. Slice 1 large bell pepper, 2 small chili peppers, and 1 medium-sized onion. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

In a deep baking dish, put the peppers and onions in the pan and drizzle with olive oil, season with garlic salt & pepper. Stir around to coat. Push aside to have each chicken thigh coated with the sauce rest on the bottom of the pan with peppers and onions around each of them.

Place baking pan into the oven and after 15 minutes, turn heat to 400 degrees. Bake for 1 hour 15 minutes or until sauce turns a little crispy black on top and onions & peppers are blackened and crispy.

Serve with rice.

 

Note: You could use any favorite Asian or barbecue sauce as a marinade without yogurt in place of the Tikka Masala using the same baking method.

mAd Ben Deglazed

Amazing what culinary prowess is revealed when a creative advertising executive can’t go out to NYC restaurants for a while.

From his great UWS kitchen, with a Whole Foods nearby. And plenty of good wine. Which must always be consumed after uncorking it for the deglaze.


Pork Tenderloin w/ Zucchini & Mushrooms

 

1 lb. pork tenderloin. Pat dry and season on all sides with and rub into the meat a little garlic powder, then sea salt & pepper. Lighter on the salt.

In a dry, hot cast iron skillet, sear & brown the tenderloin on all sides. As you turn the tenderloin, press in dried rosemary with the back of a spoon. Once all sides are browned, put skillet into a preheated 450 degree oven for 10-12 minutes.

Meanwhile, in a small fry pan, brown a small zucchini and a few mushrooms, sliced. Season with ground black pepper to taste.

Remove the pork loin from the oven to a plate. Let rest for 10 minutes while you open a bottle of a nice Willamette Valley Pinot Noir and deglaze the skillet with 1 cup. Stir with all the bits from the tenderloin. Add the zucchini and mushrooms and reduce the sauce by half.

Slice the tenderloin and plate with the zucchini, mushrooms and resulting sauce over the pork. And. Savor the rest of the Pinot.

 

Chicken Breasts w/ Lemon & Capers

 

 

Lightly pound boneless skinless chicken breasts. Coat with bread crumbs in a shallow bowl. Put water to boil in a large pot and add pasta until al dente & drain. In a fry pan, brown chicken on both sides in olive oil. Put chicken on a plate.

To the fry pan add butter and stir until browned, deglaze with a little Savignon Blanc. Add juice of 1 lemon, a mashed garlic clove, and capers with a little of their brine. Stir sauce until heated and slightly reduced. Add back chicken breasts and pasta to the fry pan.

Serve chicken with all the sauce on the pasta. And. Of course. Enjoy with the wine.

 

 

 

Seared Sea Scallops

Fresh sea scallops from Whole Foods on Columbus Circle. Season with ground black pepper. In a cast iron skillet with a little olive oil on high heat, sear scallops to a golden brown on each side. Add a little butter and brown. Deglaze with a dry French white wine. Serve with fresh greens vinaigrette and a baguette.

And. De rigueur. Sip the rest of the Sancerre.

 

 

 

 

– Ben Levine

 

Pork Chop w/ Mustard Sauce & Tangy Artichoke Slaw

Another gem from mAd Ben

 

 

Sauce

Drain liquid from one can of quartered artichoke hearts into bowl. Add 1/3 cup of Dijon mustard, 1 tbsp. paprika, 1 tsp. cayenne, salt and pepper to taste. Blend.

Artichoke Slaw

Chop drained hearts into strips as if they’re going into a chopped salad and put in separate bowl. Squeeze half lemon over artichokes, add 1/4 cup olive oil, salt and pepper to taste. Toss together in bowl and put to side.

Loin Pork Chop

Rub garlic powder, salt and pepper on both sides of pork chop. In skillet, add tbsp olive oil and bring to heat. Place pork chop in skillet. Should immediately sizzle. Brown both side of chop (1 minute each). Put chop in preheated over 300 degrees for 10 minutes or until 130 degrees internal temp. Remove pork chop and place aside on plate to rest.

Finish

In skillet, turn down heat and add 2 tbsp butter as well as sauce mix (if you need an excuse to open a bottle of white wine, add a splash of that too). Lightly scrape bottom of skillet, mix contents, let simmer for 5 minutes. Add chop back to skillet and spoon sauce over for 1 minute.

Plate pork chop and pour sauce from skillet over it with artichoke slaw on top.

– Ben Levine