I spend a lot of time writing about complex techniques, but in truth, most of the stuff I like to cook for myself at home is pretty simple. This is one of those nice and easy summer dishes that relies only on great produce—zucchini, summer squash, and tomatoes—and simple technique, but comes with a little bit of a rough twist at the end.
This taco, featured in Sara Deseran and Joe Hargrave's new cookbook of recipes from their San Francisco restaurants, Tacolicious, only goes to show how versatile and inspiring a waiting tortilla can be. Sure, you could fill it with braised pork or charred chicken, but it can be equally good piled with well-seasoned veggies.
For years, one of my favorite late night snacks has been a soft-cooked egg which I break into a bowl, drizzle with soy sauce and pepper, stir up, and slurp down as silently as possible in the dim light of the kitchen, trying not to wake my wife. I always thought I was a little weird in loving it so much. But then I found vindication in one of Singapore's staple breakfasts: kaya toast served with soft boiled eggs and strong coffee sweetened with sugar and evaporated milk (the soy sauce and pepper are added at your own discretion).
The Tex-Mex version of migas—scrambled eggs cooked with chili peppers, onion, and tortilla chips, then served on tortillas with hot sauce—is a hangover killer, but even if you haven't overindulged, it's still a killer breakfast option.
When I make salsa at home, it's usually super simple: fresh tomatoes, onions, garlic, cilantro and lime, and a spoon to eat it with. This version, from Sara Deseran and Joe Hargrave's restaurants-cum-cookbook, Tacolicious, isn't much more complicated, but is much more interesting. It's the salsa that welcomes you on arrival to the Tacolicious restaurants, and will be the standard in my kitchen from now on.
Eggplants have always been a difficult vegetable for me. They come in different shapes, sizes, colors, and stripes and are surrounded by dos and don'ts. But with enough delicious recipes under your belt, it's pretty easy to overlook the post-cooking appearance and realize that all those dos and don'ts are really more suggestions than hard-and-fast rules. This recipe, which combines small Italian eggplants cooked whole in olive oil along with harissa, chickpeas, and tomatoes, is one such preparation.
Meat can really hog the spotlight when it comes to grilling. But sometimes, a beautifully grilled vegetable comes along and steals the show. This is what happened here for me, with this eggplant from The Big-Flavor Grill by Chris Schlesinger and John Willoughby.
A medley of fresh herbs—basil, thyme, parsley, cilantro, and mint—combines with arugula, grape tomatoes, shredded mozzarella, and two types of olives for a bright, intensely flavorful end-of-summer salad.
This fingerling potato salad with aioli, basil pesto, fried shallots, and pecorino is full of contrasts that come together into one amazing side dish.
Cold buckwheat noodles and finely chopped kale are tossed together with silky bites of wakame, crunchy bean sprouts, creamy avocado and a sesame-miso dressing for a healthy and light dinner that's ready in less than 30 minutes.
Deeply fragrant with smoky charred edges, cabbage takes on a nutty, sweet flavor when grilled over blazing hot coals, and a great texture that's simultaneously tender and crisp. Its layered structure also makes it the ideal vessel for picking up both smoke flavor from the grill and whatever sauce you choose to serve it with. In this case, we're going with a rich blue cheese dressing, tomatoes, and—if you want them—bacon bits.
Deeply fragrant with smoky charred edges, cabbage takes on a nutty, sweet flavor when grilled over blazing hot coals with a great texture that's simultaneously tender and crisp. Its layered structure also makes it the ideal vessel for picking up both smoke flavor from the grill and whatever sauce you choose to serve it with. In this case, we're going with a light and creamy yogurt dressing with plenty of lemon and olive oil.
This is one of my favorite salads of all time and an absolute classic: corn grilled until it's smoky and sweet, then tossed with ripe end-of-season tomatoes in a light lemon and olive oil dressing. Salty chunks of feta and a ton of fresh herbs finish it off. As simple and delicious as recipes come.
This "digestive" biscuit, made from spelt, oats, and dark muscovado sugar, is a great all-purpose treat that walks the fine line between savory and sweet: it could just as easily be served with jam, dipped in chocolate, or set on a plate of cheese.
A bowl of black beans with some rice, bread, or greens is a meal in itself, but it's also a side dish to round out about any meal. The trick, if you could call it that, is to stick to dried beans that can slowly release their starch into the cooking liquid, and use a balance of aromatics to enhance their flavor.
Sweet, silky, and absolutely delicious, this breading-free version of eggplant parm made in Italy is well worth trying, especially in late summer when eggplant (and tomatoes!) are at their best.
This recipe yields a very chunky, rustic jam that relies entirely on the fruit's natural pectin, in concert with sugar, lemon juice, and heat, to set perfectly. This jam works well with Blenheim apricots, or any other small, freestone apricot (apricots that have pits that pop out easily, rather than clinging to the flesh).
This salad, from Terry Hope Romero's new vegan cookbook, Salad Samurai, will take you longer than the 30 minutes estimated, but it will also be one of the best quinoa salads you'll ever have.
I love chickpeas. I'll eat them every which way, and sometimes right out of the can. But I don't usually do much to them before adding them to a dish. In this salad from her new vegan cookbook, Salad Samurai, Terry Hope Romero inspires me to do more. To make them the star of this show, she fries them until golden, and pours on a BBQ-inspired marinade that coats the now crispy chickpeas with smoky-sweet flavor.
You have to like both curry and fruit in savory places to be tempted by this salad from Terry Hope Romero's new vegan cookbook, Salad Samurai, because it's heavy in both. But if you're into that, which I happen to be, this salad will do you just right.