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Jennifer Olvera

Jennifer Olvera

Sunday Supper Columnist

food and travel writer | author of Food Lovers' Guide to Chicago

Jennifer Olvera is the author of Food Lovers’ Guide to Chicago, and she has all-but tested and developed recipes since toddlehood. She writes the Sunday Supper column for Serious Eats and regularly contributes food features to Chicago Sun-Times. She can often be found tending her garden, canning and traveling to far-flung destinations, where she writes about local edibles for pubs like Los Angeles Times and Frommers.com.

  • Website
  • Location: Chicago
  • Favorite foods: Dumplings swimming in fiery chile sauce | bao | wafer-thin, tavern-style pizza | cochinita pibil with pickled red onions | noodles of many stripes
  • Last bite on earth: A steaming bowl of pho, generously doused with Sriracha

5 Grain Salads for Summer

Grains come in many forms, and they're a wonderful vehicle for flavors. The trick is striking the right balance: when combined with sweet, seasonal fruits, green herbs, and crunchy, fresh vegetables, simple grains have the potential to become magical. Here are five tasty ways to get started! More

Sunday Supper: Scamorza-Loaded Pork Pizzaiola

What's better than pizza? Not much, but pizzaiola, a Neapolitan dish of meat cooked pizza-style, is a strong contender. Often made with steak, this indulgent version features thinly pounded pork-tenderloin medallions tied around a scamorza-cheese filling. The bundles are seared, then simmered in a rich red-wine tomato sauce. A final topping of cheese on each piece of pork and a trip under the broiler to get it browned and bubbling is the killer last step. It's delicious served on pasta. More

Sunday Supper: Barbecue-Rubbed Pork Shoulder With Stovetop Rhubarb Ketchup

Pork shoulder is beloved for good reason: it's cheap, forgiving, and it can feed an army. Those reasons alone make it a winner of a cut in my book. It's also barbecue spice-ready, too, as you'll see here. And when that version is paired with a homemade, garden-fresh condiment, it comes mighty close to being my personal version of heaven on earth. More

Summer Grain Salads: Whole-Wheat Spaghetti Salad With Grilled Zucchini, Olives, and Feta

@Adele Ramirex Feel free to use penne if it's a pasta shape you prefer in salad.

Fruity Black Rice Salad With Cilantro, Avocado, and Pepitas in Chili-Orange Vinaigrette

@Zach A. I wouldn't assemble it in advance. The fruit and avocados need to be fresh-cut. If you make the rice ahead, let it cool, and toss it with a small bit of oil. Then store it in a resealable bag or container in the fridge. Do the assembly in the morning before work.

Slow-Cooked Korean Short Ribs With Green Onion and Pear

@Lucas.3rd Definitely. Just brown it first and set it on low for eight hours. You'll want to check the liquid level periodically in this case too.

Pork Meatball Vindaloo With Pearl Couscous

@asterik You want to distribute the soaked (but squeezed-out) bread evenly through the meatball mixture.

Sunday Supper: Red Wine-Marinated, Roasted Beef Tenderloin With Herb-Horseradish Cream

@momtimestwo Use an eye of round roast, cooked to medium rare, in its place. Far less spendy but a perfect substitute.

One-Dish Pork Chops With Muffuletta Relish

@bubblerich Thanks for the catch. It should be 1 gallon of water.

Soy-Glazed Roast Chicken

@Zach A. I'd start checking it about 15-20 minutes sooner.

Sunday Supper: Soy-Glazed Roast Chicken

@BillyZoom and @BeavisPeters, As stated above "But because the chicken does get pretty dark" you should tent it. It didn't burn, actually, but the sugars caramelize.

Slow Cooker Harissa Beef Stew With Lemon Yogurt

@thecavemancook Meant to add paprika to the remove list. Sorry about that.

Slow Cooker Harissa Beef Stew With Lemon Yogurt

1 teaspoon paprika
@thecavemancook No problem. Just skip the chile powder, cumin, cinnamon, coriander, mint and caraway seed. Maybe cut the garlic in half (or don't). Then I'd add two tablespoon-fulls of prepared harissa to start.

Slow Cooker Italian Sausage Meatballs With Chianti Sauce and Fusilli

@CuriousAppetite Yes, the low setting. @ALRUI Love oats instead; they all-but disappear, without changing the texture. @ClubMed Just go a little light on the breadcrumbs if you go that route. But I really prefer oats.

Oven-Baked Espresso, Cocoa, and Chili-Rubbed Baby Back Ribs

@Tipsykit37 Absolutely. Use those ground beans! @Annie1959 If you keep the grill at steady temps and approximately as above, I'd follow the same pattern.

Sunday Supper: Oven-Baked Espresso, Cocoa, and Chili-Rubbed Baby Back Ribs

@Vittrick The "green" is Grace brand Scotch Bonnet.

Balsamic-Brown Sugar Short Ribs With Garlic Mashed Potatoes

@cookingis fun. If you can, use a bit of "browning sauce" though, because the point is to build depth. Soy sauce doesn't have the same impact.

Slow Cooker Beef Stroganoff

@ elangomatt, et. al, that is correct, they are Reames frozen egg noodles. The dried ones work great, too. They just look different and don't have the same "chew."

Slow Cooker Chicken With 40 Cloves of Garlic and Fingerling Potatoes

@LindaBilyk I'd cook it for a shorter time, no more than four hours.

@Teachertalk The liquid is pretty necessary to keep the meat moist and submerged. It also is the vehicle for cooking the potatoes. But feel free to cut back if you prefer.

Slow Cooker Pork Paprikash

@flowergarden129 It's added in the first step. You can choose to leave it out, but it adds depth. It's not at all a dominant flavor. In my experience, this falls a little flat without it.

Smoky, Spicy Cabbage Rolls

@S McDowall You're actually cooking the rice in the V8, which saturates the bundles. The rice cooks in the liquid and turns out just right. If you feel better par-boiling, you can definitely feel free to do that, too.

Slow Cooker Chicken Tomatillo Tacos

Hi everyone. Sorry if the "salsa" was confusing. You're essentially making the cooking liquid and, yes, the tomatillos go in the blender as the base to this. As for not having a slow-cooker @SWgirl, I'd simple cook in a Dutch oven, 325 degrees, for 2-3 hours.

Smoky, Spicy Cabbage Rolls

@gdendler All of the V8 goes on top. When it cooks, you get a cohesive sauce.

Sunday Supper: Stovetop Cheddar Mac and Cheese With Peppadew Peppers

@jasonbaldwin I can't disagree with that, but they're the most accessible version I know of. I'd advice people to check out the olive bar at places like Whole Foods as well, as you can usually find them there.

Sunday Supper: Tangy Slow Cooker Brisket With Potatoes and Sweet Peppers

@theotherworldly Fingerlings work well.

Sunday Supper: Potato Pancakes With Oven-Roasted Thyme Applesauce, Sour Cream, and Poached Eggs

@TimoG Response on recipe page. Divided use for eggs.

Potato Pancakes With Oven-Roasted Thyme Applesauce, Sour Cream, and Poached Eggs

@TimoG Yes, the four additional eggs are for the poached eggs. Serious Eats house style dictates the ingredient is mentioned on first use, divided.

Slow Cooker Pho With Eye of Round

@JeanieInSF You want two pounds of oxtails, bones and meat, cut into large chunks.

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