People think that risotto is hard to make. And it is, but only if you use one of those recipes that has you standing over the stove mixing the wine and chicken stock and adding ladlefuls each time the liquid is absorbed. One of my favorite people ever, Ina Garten, just makes her risotto in the oven. So easy! Especially if you have homemade vegetable broth in the freezer, like I always do.
We all stuffed something for our kosher connection challenge this month, like Jessica’s acorn squash, but I’m here to you to share something unstuffed with you.
I have stuffed many things in my kitchen-life: grape leaves, meatballs, zucchini, onions, etc. But never have I stuffed cabbage, and I think it’ll stay that way. I mean, this is so much easier, but you still get the same flavors. I guess the only thing lacking is the single-serving cabbages, but whatever, who needs portion control!? Continue reading
When I found out that this month’s link up was stuffing, I was super excited. Not that I’ve ever made traditional Thanksgiving stuffing/dressing before, but because we’re Syrian, and we stuff everything. I racked my brain to think of something traditionally Syrian we can make for you so that you can have a Syrian Thanksgiving. Then I changed my mind and thought I’d tackle the unknown territory of Thanksgiving stuffing. I cut recipes from all my magazines and bookmarked recipes on blogs from years past. But nothing excited me enough, and I just couldn’t figure out what to share with you this month. Continue reading
Salad is usually more of a side dish or appetizer for us; it’s not a meal on its own. Whenever I pack salad to bring to lunch at work, I always end up hungry in the middle of the afternoon. Even if it has a hard-boiled egg in it! This salad is different. Like Jessica’s Salad Nicoise, it stands alone as an entree salad. It’s packed with protein and substance from the soba noodles and tofu, so it’s healthy, filling and delicious. Continue reading
I know pomegranates are a Rosh Hashanah food, but lately they have been beautiful, giant, and on sale! And I like them no matter what time of the year it is. So, when I saw this recipe for roasted chicken with this sweet and crispy skin, I knew I had to try it, especially because I got some Silan, a date syrup that the recipe called for. Continue reading
I once had a fight with a stranger on a New Jersey Transit train because I insisted I wasn’t Punjabi, and he thought I must have been. “I am from Punjab and all of the ladies there look like you!” He yelled at me. Well, sorry. He was quite adamant that we converse in Punjabi, too, a language that I do not speak. And we were getting along in English just fine (well, maybe not getting along, but communicating.)! Continue reading
Hope all of you in Sandy’s path (like us!) are staying safe and have enough projects to entertain you on this second day at home! If you happen to have lamb, leeks and potatoes at home, I have a dinner idea for you:
This is becoming one of my favorite dishes. It takes too long to cook be a regular weeknight meal, but it’s all made in one pot (my Dutch oven), it can be made ahead and it’s definitely a special enough for a celebration. Don’t worry, it’s mostly waiting around in the oven time, so you can watch a movie while it cooks, you don’t have to sit in the kitchen all night.
Lamb is usually a treat for us, but it’s not expensive to buy shoulder chops or stew meat, and the long cooking time makes the meat super soft. Leeks are totally underrated. I don’t use them enough, even though they play a part in many of my favorite dishes, including this ginger fried rice. It’s called a lamb and leek hotpot, but potatoes also play a key role in it; they soak up all of the delicious lamb flavor and all of the leek juices. Mm, amazing!
I’ve actually never had or even heard of a hotpot before, but it’s basically lamb and vegetables, surrounded by potatoes. Thanks, Greedy Gourmet for introducing me to this delicious Lancashire pub grub!
Now, the first time I made this, I was smart and bought boneless meat. That’s what I thought I bought the second time around, until I got home and realized there were bones in my stew meat. Oops! Just as delicious, but a little more annoying to eat. Also, I didn’t bother peeling the potatoes, I was too lazy. And if you’re feeling lazy, you’re better off skipping the potato-peeling than the leek-frying! This is a crucial step. Do not skip it.
Your kitchen is about to smell so good!
- 6 tablespoons olive oil
- 3 leeks, trimmed and chopped
- 1 onion, chopped
- 1 1/2 to 2 lbs boneless lamb shoulder, cut into cubes
- 1 tablespoon flour
- 2 garlic cloves, chopped
- 4 medium “waxy” potatoes (about 1 3/4 lbs) (I used yukon golds)
- chopped thyme
- 1 cup vegetable broth
- 1/2 cup white wine
- salt and pepper
- Heat about 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a Dutch oven or another pot that can go on the stove and in the oven. Add the leeks and onions, coat with oil, cover the pot and cook for about 10 minutes. Uncover, salt, remove the leeks and onions to a bowl and set aside.
- Meanwhile, lightly coat the lamb with the flour. Add 2 tablespoons of oil to the pot and brown the meat on all sides (in batches, if necessary) with the garlic, salt and pepper. Remove from pot and set aside.
- Preheat the oven to 350.
- Layer half the potatoes on the bottom of the pot. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme. Add half the leeks on top. Then add all of the meat, the rest of the leeks, and finally, arrange the rest of the potatoes nicely on top. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme, then pour in the broth and the wine.
- Turn the fire on, bring to a simmer, cover, and place in the oven to cook for about an hour and 50 minutes. Remove the lid, sprinkle with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and cook for another 30 to 40 minutes. Serve immediately.
Pesto is one of those things that are so easy to make I can’t believe people buy it. I mean, if you have a big enough freezer, a few batches of this with some summer basil will last you the entire year. I’m not saying no one should buy pesto, but if you have a blender or food processor, try making this. You might never go back to store-bought again. Continue reading
I’m very into quick meals these days. Not things like boring mac and cheese, although we do eat that in my house, but new and different meals. I like recipe testing and trying out interesting flavors. So when I came across this recipe on Pinterest, I just knew I had to make it. This is a simple recipe with a ton of flavor! It’s sweet and tangy, and healthy when served over brown rice with some veggies. I chose broccoli.
I love to grill. Even though the weather is getting cold and many people are braising and slow cooking every night. I’m not, I just like cooking outside. But sometimes, you just don’t want meat. Good thing there are other things that you can grill! I mean, of course we all know about grilling corn and other veggies. But really, my favorite thing to grill is pineapple. And after that, pretty much any fruit. So when I found this recipe, I was extremely excited. And then went ahead and make it about ten times this I discovered the recipe last summer. Continue reading