Donna and I spent half the day yesterday shooting the promotional video for our new book, out next month, and I figured I should ask our videographer, Cynthia Albanese, to shoot as much video as possible.  So in addition to describing the book, I also roasted a chicken, made stock and made a soup from the stock to demonstrate The Generosity of a Chicken.  We had fresh corn, tomatoes from the garden and everyone loves the dynamic flavor the lime juice gives this soup, the richness of the avocado, and fresh crunchy tortillas, so that’s what I made. When you’ve got delicious stock on hand, you’re five minutes away from dozens of possible meals.  I could have used left over chicken and some noodles, I could have cooked potatoes in it, pureed it, finished it Read On »

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The EU has just recognized that the Cornish pastie must originate from Cornwall, England therefore giving it DPO status, via Independent UK.

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This is not just a guacamole recipe and preparation, it’s a broader lesson about aromatics and acid and using seasonal foods.  It’s avocado season, so they’re really good now!  And they will be all summer long.  Avocados are one of my favorite fruits; they’re kind of like butter, a ready made sauce—all you have to do is adjust texture and add flavors. I recently offered this mortar and pestle to followers on OpenSky (more on OpenSky here), and it makes a gorgeous service piece in addition to being a practical cooking tool.  I mash garlic and salt to a paste, then add minced shallot (yes shallots!). Then I add lime juice. This is one of those great all-purpose techniques I use in many preparations, from mayo to vinaigrettes. First, the juice dissolves the salt so Read On »

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Making English meat pies and the history of them from Egypt, Greece, Rome, to the UK, via Feast.

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With all this curing going on over at charcutepalooza, I thought I’d mention a common item that anyone can easily cure, given enough time.  Lemons.  Lemon confit or preserved lemon, is a powerful seasoning and a great pantry item to have on hand. A common ingredient in North African and Middle Eastern cuisines, it adds a beguiling lemony-salty brightness to stews, curries, and sauces. It is amazing minced and tossed into a salad, or used to infused olive oil for a vinaigrette or condiment. It also goes well with chicken, fish, and veal. There may be no purer example of salt’s transformative powers than what it alone does to the lemon. The following recipe is adapted from Charcuterie. If you want a sweeter result you can add a cup or so of sugar.  Not too long Read On »

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