The Southwestern cooking of Arizona and New Mexico closely resembles the cooking of Mexico. Chiles (or chili peppers) are a large part of these cuisines. Some of the more common peppers are finding their way into our supermarkets as well, as more members of our community have roots in Mexico and other Central American countries.
Braised wild ivory salmon with Peconic Bay scallops and mussels. (Credit: John Ross)
I received a Christmas present of 10 pounds of wild Alaskan salmon fillets, individually frozen and sealed in cryovac. The package included red king salmon, Kalgin Island king salmon and white (or ivory) king salmon. They were all high-quality, troll-caught fish that were processed and shipped via FedEx to my door. At a time of year when local fish are not in abundance, it was a timely gift. (more…)
Dried beans, a member of the legume family, have all the characteristics of a monumental food: They have been cultivated for some 9,000 years; the many varieties are identified with culturally significant dishes throughout the world; and they have unusual potential for improving human health.
We often pass by that long row of dried legumes in the supermarket, thinking that they are not very exciting, are hard to cook and don’t taste very good. I have discovered that using dried instead of canned beans and cooking them at low temperature for a long time produces a delicious result. Here are two recipes that will warm you up on a cold winter day. (more…)
Rib-eye roast beef with Yorkshire pudding and roasted vegetables. (Credit: John Ross)
Much of our culture we inherited from the British, and none more than our love for meat and potatoes. America is more famous for its steaks and hamburgers than for its roasts, but beef has always been our choice for many special meals. This is the time of year, during the holidays, to indulge your family and guests to a “joint” of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. The following menu, inspired by the British, was enjoyed by my friends and family.
Potted Shrimp with Wilted Spinach Salad
Purchase 1 pound (21-25) of medium-sized shrimp. Bring 3 quarts of water to a boil, add 2 teaspoons salt and cook the shrimp until they turn pink, about 5 minutes. Drain, cool, peel and de-vein the shrimp, then cut them into small 1/4-inch pieces. (more…)
Heringssalat, a salad tray that features marinated herring and pickled beets. (Credit: John Ross)
Julius Caesar is said to have inspired the German tradition of sauerbraten as he sent amphoras filled with beef marinated in wine over the Alps to the newly founded Roman colony of Cologne. However, since Julius Caesar was murdered in 44 B.C. and Cologne wasn’t founded until 50 A.D., this is highly unlikely.
The Thanksgiving turkey, broken down into parts and surrounded by all the fixings. (Credit: John Ross)
Perhaps the crowning glory of Thanksgiving dinner is that moment when you bring the golden roast turkey to the table and set it in front of the host or hostess to carve.
But after that fleeting moment you are left with a messy job of trying to separate the parts of a bird that may be vastly overcooked or, worse, has blood flowing from the joints. One alternative is to break the turkey down the day before cooking into the legs and thighs, the breast and the backbone. Now you can make a rich stock with the bones; you can braise the legs and thighs for complete doneness and lots of flavor; and you can roast the breast to juicy perfection. You can even make a beautiful presentation at the table.
Creamed kale served in a roasted pumpkin. (Credit: John Ross)
According to the internet publication “Medical News Today,” the top 10 healthiest foods in the world are: 1) apples; 2) almonds; 3) broccoli; 4) blueberries; 5) oily fish such as salmon, sardines and mackerel; 6) leafy green vegetables such as kale, collards and spinach; 7) sweet potatoes; 8) wheat germ; 9) avocados; and 10) oatmeal.
Eating these foods on a regular basis can help prevent many diseases and eliminate the need for a long list of pills. The challenge is to make them part of a delicious meal that you want to repeat time after time.
This column will focus on kale, one of the healthiest of leafy greens that is becoming more popular every day. In addition to a long list of vitamins and minerals, kale contains antioxidant nutrients, anti-inflammatory nutrients and anti-cancer nutrients in the form of glucosinolates. Here are some ideas for how to enjoy this “super” food: (more…)