Zucchinetti Colitti

In our family, they rhyme.

Clean and pat dry several zucchini squashes. Trim ends. Slice lenghthwise into thin flat pieces. Then slice each piece into long thin strips. Like spaghetti.

In a skillet, heat olive oil and brown a small chopped red onion and a couple rough chopped Crimini mushrooms. Season with garlic powder, oregano to taste. Deglaze with half a cup dry red wine. Add 1 can whole San Marzano tomatoes. Chop and stir. Add basil and red pepper flakes. Stir. Reduce sauce by half on low heat. Add the zucchinetti strips and stir until coated with sauce and slightly soft.

Serve with grated cheese and lemon zest.

 

Can add any chopped meat in the browning process if desired for a heartier meal.

Tandoori Shrimp

Serves 2.

In a medium-sized bowl, mix together 2 tbs. plain yogurt; 1/4 tsp. each cardamom, coriander, ginger, turmeric, cayenne; 2 cloves chopped garlic. Clean and devein 16 large shrimp. Pat dry. Add to the bowl and stir into the mixture to coat all shrimp evenly. Cover with Saran wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours or more.

When ready to cook, bring shrimp and marinade to room temp. Put shrimp on paper towels to remove excess marinade. Place shrimp on a cookie sheet so not touching. Preheat oven broiler to hottest temperature. Place shrimp under the broiler on top rack for 6 minutes. Do not turn the shrimp. Take out of oven.

Serve with rice and chutneys.

Blackened Asian Salmon

Brush 2 6-oz. salmon filets, cross-cut, with your favorite Asian sauce. Sesame Ginger Teriyaki is great. Just to lightly coat the outside of the filets. Heat fry pan with a little olive oil to medium hot, place filets in skin-side up. Leave untouched for 4 minutes to get a blackened crust. Turn filets skin-side down for an additional 4 minutes or until medium rare.

Removing the filets with a spatula will leave skin in the pan. Remove the skin from the pan and discard. Fry up some cooked rice and veggies in the drippings. Serve filets and rice topped with lemon juice and a little zest.

Andouille Chili

Super Bowl staple.

In a large stock pot, brown two small red onions, diced. Add 1 red, 1 yellow bell pepper, and 2-3  jalapeño peppers, diced. Brown. Add 4 pre-cooked andouille sausages, cut into small squares. Brown. Add 2 cans low-salt black beans, 2 cans low-salt kidney beans. Stir. Season with 2 tsp. cumin and 1/2 tsp. cayenne. Stir. Add 1 can whole tomatoes and 1 large jar medium hot salsa with corn. Add another 2 tsp. cumin and 1/2 tsp. cayenne. Stir. Adjust seasonings to taste.

Cover and bring to a boil. Uncover and simmer for 1 hour or longer until thickens. Serve with grated cheddar and tortilla chips. Go Saints! Oops.

Swordfish Anchoise

Serves 2.

Mince together 6 Italian jarred anchovy filets and 1 tbs. capers. 1 to 1 proportion. Set aside.

1 lb. 1″ thick swordfish steak cut into 2 pieces. Pat dry. Sprinkle with ground black pepper and a little garlic powder on both sides. In a non-stick skillet, brown fish for 3-4 minutes. Then flip the fish and add 3-4 tbs. butter. Brown while also basting with the butter for another 3 minutes until cooked through but not overcooked. Remove swordfish from skillet.

In the same pan, on medium heat, add the minced anchovies and capers. Stir. Add a squeeze of lemon and 1 cup dry white wine. Stir and reduce sauce by half.

Put the swordfish steaks back into the pan and warm quickly in the sauce on both sides. Serve the fish with the sauce and top with a little lemon zest.

Marinated Skirt Steak

1 lb. skirt steak for 2 generous servings

Cut the steak into two crosswise pieces. Marinate in S&F carne asada sauce overnight in a large plastic zip-loc bag. When ready to cook take the steaks out of the marinade and pat dry. Discard the sauce and bag.

In a large non-stick skillet brown the steaks on both sides for 2-3 minutes depending on thickness until pink in the middle. Remove steaks to a cutting board. Slice pre-roasted bell peppers and put them in the same skillet without cleaning it and heat the peppers. Slice the steak against the grain and serve with rice and the roasted peppers.

Post Stuffington Frittata

Leftover sausage mushroom stuffing. Or just chopped ham, scallions, peppers. Fry up in a little butter. Blend 4-6 eggs with 1 tbs. low-fat plain yogurt, season with salt and pepper. Add to the fry pan. Stir until eggs are set on the bottom. Add a few slices of swiss or cheddar cheese. Pop under the broiler on high heat until brown and set on top. Serve it up with salsas and hot sauces for a spicy after-turkey treat.

Thanksgiving Braised Short Ribs

Turkey is boring. We prefer this rich late autumn feast instead.  Serves 8.

6 + lbs. short ribs cut 1/2″ thick and of like sizes. This recipe takes a whole bottle of red wine, so a French Beaujolais works well. It’s not too expensive, but good enough to be the main ingredient. The meat has to marinate overnight in the mirepoix.

For the marinade:

2 cups sliced celery
2 cups sliced carrots
1 cup sliced parsnips on a slant
2 cups sliced leek
2 cups parsley sprigs
1 tsp. juniper berries or 1/4 cup gin
1 bottle red wine
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
2+ tsp. red, green, black whole peppercorn mix
Any leftover celery, carrot, parsnip chunks

Ditched the old glass baking dishes when we moved to the City, so using large freezer bags this year. Divide the short ribs into two large bags and add half of the marinade to each. Ziploc and put in a large bowl in case there is any leakage. Refrigerate overnight.photo-50

Before cooking take baggies out of the refrigerator and pour into large bowl. Take out the short ribs and pat dry on paper towels. Let all come to room temperature.

To Cook:

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Strain the vegetables from the marinade liquid in a bowl. Reserve both liquid and strained veggies separately.

Dust short ribs with a little flour on all sides. In a large stock pot, brown meat on all sides, in a little olive oil. Brown in stages so not crowded. Remove meat from pot with tongs to a large bowl after each browning stage.

Add the strained vegetables to the pot and brown. Add 1/3 cup tomato paste to the middle of the pot and brown. Bring the vegetables into the paste and stir.

Return the meat and add the wine liquid from the marinade to the stock pot. Turn to medium high heat. Stir all veggies, meat, wine marinade lightly to blend. Cover and place pot on middle rack in oven at 375 degrees for 1 1/2 hours.

Peel 3 cups cipollini onions, add to the pot and stir in. Cover again and bake for another 1 hour until meat is tender. Add chicken broth if needed to keep meat covered and moist.

Uncover the pot and bake for another 20 minutes to brown. Remove pot from oven.

Serve with mashed turnips or horseradish mashed potatoes. Or both.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Autumnal Roast Chicken

hatfield pumpkins with truckConsistently succulent methodologies borrowed from Alfred Portale and Jacques Pépin. Moist with crispy skin. Secret is drying thoroughly and refrigerating with sea salt in the cavity. Then, rotating in the oven.

Serves 4-6.

4 lb. farm fresh whole chicken with giblets. Rinse chicken and giblets.

Put chicken in a deep roasting pan with paper towels on the bottom. Pat dry chicken all around and shake sea salt into the cavity. Refrigerate for at least an hour.

When ready to cook, take chicken out of refrigerator while oven preheats to 425 degrees. Remove paper towels from the pan. Stand chicken cavity side up. Place giblets around the chicken.

Cut top off a whole garlic head and place in the cavity of the chicken. Slice a lemon in half, squeeze juice on giblets and put remaining core into the cavity. Pour a tsp. dried thyme into the cavity.

Oil the bottom of the roasting pan. Place chicken onto its side on the olive oil. Slice 2 sweet onions and place around chicken and over the giblets. Drizzle olive oil over the wing, leg and side of the chicken. Sprinkle with garlic powder and ground black pepper. Place into preheated 425 degree oven on the middle rack. Roast for 30 minutes.

Take out of the oven and turn chicken to the other side, drizzle with olive oil over leg, wing, side and cover with garlic powder and ground black pepper. Return into the 425 degree oven for another 30 minutes.

Take out chicken and turn to breast side is up. Baste with juices all over breast, legs and wings. Put back into 425 degree oven for another 30 minutes. Take out of the oven and tent with aluminum foil for 15 minutes.

Onions and giblets should be crispy. Skin, golden. Meat moist.

Carve and serve with giblets and juices.