If you’re looking to add a bit of a kick to your usual steak routine, this creamy fusion of butter and Sriracha sauce starts with a base of caramelized miso, which deepens its savory-nutty flavor, and adds body to the finished dressing. It brings tang and a gentle pulse of heat from the vinegary Sriracha.
Words to the wise: There was an abundance of sauce for the amount of steak. You may want to cook more steaks or cut the sauce ingredients by half. If you do have leftovers, it’s also fantastic on any other protein like tofu, chicken, or even fish.
2 1″-thick New York strip steaks (about 12 oz. each)
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil or vegetable oil
5 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into pieces, divided
2 Tbsp. white or yellow miso
½ cup Sriracha
¼ cup water
2 scallions, thinly sliced
Heat a dry large heavy skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium-high. Season steaks generously with salt, then coat with oil. When skillet is very hot, cook steaks, turning every 2 minutes or so, until deeply browned and an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part registers 120° for medium-rare (internal temperature should climb to about 130° as steaks rest), 8–10 minutes.
Transfer steaks to a wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet and let rest 10 minutes.
Meanwhile, melt 1 Tbsp. butter in a small saucepan over medium heat. Add miso and cook, stirring and scraping bottom of pan constantly, until miso darkens a few shades and smells very toasty and nutty (it will stick to pan), about 4 minutes.
Pour in ¼ cup water and whisk until incorporated, scraping bottom of pan to release any browned bits. Add Sriracha and remaining 4 Tbsp. butter; cook, whisking constantly, until butter is melted and sauce is smooth. Season with salt.
Transfer steaks to a cutting board and slice against the grain. Arrange on a platter and spoon some butter sauce over; top with scallions. Serve remaining butter sauce alongside.
“Spicy, garlicky thecha is a green-(or red)-chile-based condiment that hails from Maharashtra in western India. You can use it to complement seared skirt steak, as well as chicken, eggplant, cauliflower, or any other ingredient that longs for massive flavor.” — Bon Appétit
Since we had some flap meat in the freezer, and actually prefer it over skirt steak, it became the foundation for our meal. Because flap steak is thicker than skirt, we sliced the thicker portions and adjusted the times slightly. However, the Skirt Steak with Scallion Thecha recipe below mimics the original from Bon Appétit.
NOTE: To save a step, grind the peanuts in the mini-food processor before using it to make the thecha.
Our choice of sides was roasted butternut squash and red onions, plus a side salad; but you could also serve the steak with rice, roasted potatoes, and/or a salad for a full meal. Our Thai chiles were red, so the thecha is more red than one made with green serrano chiles, as is typical.
1 small bunch cilantro, tough stems removed, leaves and tender stems coarsely chopped
4 scallions, coarsely chopped
3 green Thai or serrano chiles, stemmed and seeded
4 garlic cloves, coarsest chopped
1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt, plus more
⅓ cup vegetable oil, plus more for steak
1 tsp. cumin seeds
¼ cup salted or unsalted roasted peanuts, crushed
1½ lb. ½”-thick skirt steak, cut into 5”-long pieces
Flaky sea salt
Pulse cilantro, scallions, chiles, garlic, and 1 tsp. Diamond Crystal or ½ tsp. Morton kosher salt in a food processor (a mini processor works well here) until a coarse paste forms. Transfer to a small heatproof bowl.
Heat ⅓ cup oil in a small skillet over medium-high. Cook cumin until fragrant, about 10 seconds. Transfer to bowl with paste; add peanuts and mix well. Set scallion thecha aside for serving.
Pat steaks dry with paper towels and season on both sides with kosher salt. Rub a little oil over steaks to coat lightly.
Heat a large cast-iron skillet over medium-high. Add half of the steak, arranging in a single layer, and cook, undisturbed, until a golden brown crust forms, 2–3 minutes. Turn steak over and cook until second side forms a golden brown crust, 2–3 minutes. (We had a large enough grill pan to cook all of the steak at once.)
Transfer steak to a cutting board and repeat process with remaining steak, if necessary. Let rest 10 minutes.
Slice steak against the grain and arrange on a platter. Top with reserved scallion thecha and sprinkle with sea salt.
In a sense, this salad is glorified gazpacho, but chunkier—and it paired wonderfully with our Cataplana(Portugal’s Simple Seafood Stew) entrée. As it only feeds 3 to 4, we doubled the amounts to feed the party of 6.
As I’ve mentioned in the past, our gas oven broiler doesn’t do the best job. When I walked into the kitchen and saw The Hubs down on his knees with his arm stuck into the oven rotating the peppers with tongs, I gently told him that it might be much easier to char them directly over a gas burner. Smart man that he is, he took the hint, because when I walked back in, he was searing the plum tomatoes, two at a time, directly on the grates.
When it comes to hosting, we like to do as much as possible the day prior to the event. For this side dish, he blackened and peeled the tomatoes and bell peppers, then salted the peeled cucumber slices. About half an hour before the feast was served, the salad was finished with the dressing.
Turn the broiler on, and set the red and green bell peppers underneath. Cook, turning occasionally, until lightly blackened on all sides. When done, place in a small plastic bag and let steam for a few minutes. Repeat with the tomatoes, but first lightly coat in olive oil. They will cook much quicker. Remove when lightly blackened all over and let cool on a tray.
While the bell peppers and tomatoes cool, slice the cucumber into 1/2 inch inch thick slices. Set on a rack or on a paper towel, and sprinkle lightly with salt. Let those hang out for 20 minutes or so until they release some water. Dry with paper towels.
Remove the bell peppers from the plastic bags when cooled. Peel off the skin, remove the stems, and chop into 1-inch squares. Repeat this process with the tomatoes, discarding most of the pulp.
Toss the chopped bell peppers, tomato, and cucumbers in a large bowl. Add the chopped cilantro, olive oil, red wine vinegar, and chili paste. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Eat right away, or let sit in the fridge for 30 minutes for the flavors to really marry.
In a recent Milk Street article we found this Strip Steaks with Spicy Tomato-Basil Sauce recipe which pairs a meaty steak with the sort of tomato sauce that might typically be used on pizza. There are many ways to prepare the dish, but this simple version is perfect for a weeknight meal.
The sauce is made with canned tomatoes, a punchiness from garlic and pepper flakes, and the umami quotient gets a kick up with a few anchovy fillets (in case you’re worried, the sauce won’t taste fishy at all). Slice and sauce the seared strip steaks, then finish the dish with torn fresh basil and fruity olive oil.
Our steaks were actually grilled because we wanted to take advantage of the nice weather, but either stovetop or hot grill sears the meat nicely. We served ours with orzo treated with olive oil and parsley; another option is thick slices of warm, crusty bread to dip in the sauce. And if you are lucky enough to have any of that fabulous sauce leftover, use it on pasta.
NOTE: Don’t use extra-virgin olive oil to sear the steaks; its smoke point is too low. Use grapeseed or another neutral oil to achieve a deep sear and to avoid the off flavor of overheated olive oil.
Keep in mind, the original recipe from Milk Street indicated this recipe would serve 4 to 6. The portions would be rather paltry if trying to feed six people. Our two strip steaks were smaller and a bit thinner, weighing in at just over a pound for two of them which rendered three servings.
1 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, plus more to serve
2 medium garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2-3 oil-packed anchovy fillets, chopped
1/2-3/4 tsp. red pepper flakes
28 oz. can whole peeled tomatoes, crushed by hand
1/3 cup lightly packed fresh basil
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
2 1-lb. beef strip steaks, each about 1 inch thick, trimmed and patted dry
1 Tbsp. grapeseed or other neutral oil
In a 12-inch skillet over medium-high, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, until beginning to turn golden, 30 to 60 seconds.
Add the anchovies and pepper flakes; cook, stirring, until fragrant, 30 to 60 seconds.
Stir in the tomatoes with juices, a few basil leaves and ¼ teaspoon salt. Bring to a simmer, then simmer, stirring occasionally, until a spatula drawn through the sauce leaves a trail, 12 to 14 minutes. Transfer to a small bowl, cover and set aside; wipe out the skillet.
Season the steaks on both sides with salt and black pepper. In the same skillet over medium-high, heat the neutral oil until barely smoking. Add the steaks, reduce to medium and cook until well browned on the bottoms, 5 to 7 minutes.
Using tongs, flip the steaks and cook until the second sides are well browned and the centers register 120°F for medium-rare, another 5 to 7 minutes.
Transfer to a platter, tent with foil and let rest for about 10 minutes.
Transfer the steaks to a cutting board and slice them on the diagonal ¼ to ½ inch thick. Return to the platter and spoon on some of the sauce.
Tear the remaining basil and sprinkle it over the top, then drizzle with additional olive oil. Serve the remaining sauce on the side.
This dish borrows some of the flavors of Greek moussaka for a quick-one pan meal. Seared flank steak is finished with a wonderful rustic sauce-like side of eggplant, tomatoes, garlic and herbs. Crumbled feta cheese adds briny notes that contrast nicely with the sweetness of the vegetables and the richness of the beef.
Prep is pretty easy because there is no need to peel the eggplant, canned tomatoes are used, and the feta cheese is already crumbled; not to mention it all happens in one skillet.
To keep the eggplant from drying out so that the pieces become silky-soft, don’t drain the juices from the tomatoes—the liquid helps form the sauce. When slicing the flank steak for serving, make sure to slice it against the grain for the tenderest texture.
1½ lbs. flank steak, trimmed, halved lengthwise, then crosswise
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 lb. eggplant, cut into 1-inch chunks
14½ oz. can diced tomatoes, (don’t drain, save the juices)
4 medium garlic cloves, minced
2 tsp. dried oregano
¾ tsp. ground cinnamon
½ cup lightly packed fresh mint, chopped
1½ oz. feta cheese, crumbled (about ⅓ cup)
Season the steak with salt and pepper. In a nonstick 12-inch skillet over medium-high, heat 2 tablespoons of oil until shimmering. Add the steak and brown on both sides, 6 to 8 minutes total, flipping the pieces once. Transfer to a plate.
In the same pan over medium-high, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons oil, the eggplant and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and softened, 5 to 6 minutes. Reduce to medium and add the tomatoes with juices, the garlic, oregano and cinnamon. Cook, stirring occasionally, until thickened and the eggplant has begun to break down, about 5 minutes.
Off heat, stir in any accumulated beef juices and half the mint. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Thinly slice the steak against the grain and place on a platter. Spoon the eggplant mixture on and around the steak, then sprinkle with feta and the remaining mint.
The inspiration for this Spanish spin on pork and apples comes from “Tapas: A Taste of Spain in America” by José Andrés. This version from Milk Street uses pork tenderloins that get a stovetop sear and finish in the oven on a bed of lightly sautéed onion and Granny Smith apple. The onion-apple mixture softens to a jammy relish-like accompaniment that is accented with smoked paprika and dry sherry. It’s a rich, woodsy complement to slices of the mild, meaty tenderloin.
We cooked only one tenderloin for the two of us which provided three servings of meat. The amount of ingredients for the sauce was kept the same because we prefer things saucy. Our accompaniments were roasted butternut squash cubes and a simple side salad. The flavors of the meal were outstanding!
Pan-Roasted Pork Tenderloins with Apple, Sherry and Smoked Paprika
2 1¼-lb. pork tenderloins, trimmed of silver skin and halved crosswise
2 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp. salted butter, divided
1 medium yellow onion, halved and thinly sliced
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, halved, cored and cut into ½-inch-thick wedges
5 sprigs thyme
½ cup dry sherry
¼ cup low-sodium chicken broth
1 Tbsp. finely chopped fresh chives
Heat the oven to 450°F with a rack in the middle position. In a small bowl, mix together 1 teaspoon of paprika and 1½ teaspoons salt. Rub the mixture onto all sides of the pork.
In an oven-safe 12-inch skillet over medium-high, heat the oil until shimmering. Place the pork in the skillet. Cook, turning occasionally, until lightly browned on all sides, about 4 minutes total. Transfer to a large plate.
Add 1 tablespoon of butter, the onion and apple to the skillet. Cook over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until softened and golden brown, about 8 minutes. Distribute the mixture in an even layer, then scatter on the thyme. Place the pork on top, add any accumulated juices and transfer to the oven. Roast until the center of the thickest piece of tenderloin reaches 135°F or is just slightly pink when cut into, 9 to 12 minutes.
Remove the skillet from the oven; the handle will be hot. Using tongs, transfer the pork to a cutting board and tent with foil. Add the sherry, broth and the remaining 1 teaspoon paprika to the pan, then cook over medium-high, stirring occasionally, until the liquid is slightly reduced and thickened, about 4 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat, then remove and discard the thyme. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon butter and stir until melted. Taste and season with salt and pepper. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the onion-apple mixture to a serving platter, leaving the liquid in the pan. Thinly slice the pork and arrange over the onion-apple mixture. Drizzle the pan liquid over the meat and sprinkle with the chives.
Motivation for this Crispy Chicken Under A Brick recipe was inspired from the European nation of Georgia, which borders Western Asia. The technique of employing Tsitsila Tabaka is a regional tradition that often calls for foiled-wrapped bricks and starting the bird on the stovetop. However it’s done, the rendered fat in the pan typically serves as a base for a simple garlic sauce that brims with flavor.
The chicken is spatchcocked, which puts thighs and breasts on the same plane for even cooking. Georgian cooks use a brick to keep their chickens truly flat. The weight presses the chicken down, ensuring the bird makes full contact with the pan’s hot surface, which renders the fat and ensures even browning. If crisp skin is what you’re after, this is the way to get it.
For the “brick,” we used a second heavy skillet ; it’s easier and works just as well. However, if you have them on hand, you instead could use one or two clean bricks wrapped in heavy-duty foil. Don’t use a chicken much larger than 4 pounds, as it may not fit comfortably in the skillet. Don’t forget to pat the chicken dry before searing. The drier the skin, the better it crisps. After searing, make sure to drain the fat in the pan before putting the bird in the oven; this reduces splatter.
Instead of simply seasoning the meat, you build flavor by marinating it in lemon juice, olive oil, garlic and herbs, such as rosemary, then searing the chicken, skin side down, with bricks (or heavy skillet) on top. Then flip it and finish it in the oven. An easy pan sauce with garlic, lemon and cilantro perfectly complements the chicken.
After roasting, use the same skillet to create the easy pan sauce. Cook garlic in butter, then deglazed the pan with chicken broth, scraping up the flavorful brown bits. Off heat, stir in cayenne pepper, lemon juice and fresh cilantro. Spooned over the crispy chicken, the cilantro and garlic in the sauce reinforced the coriander and garlic in the spice rub.
In a small bowl, stir together the coriander, granulated garlic, 1½ teaspoons salt and ½ teaspoon black pepper. Place the chicken breast down on a cutting board. Using sturdy kitchen shears, cut along both sides of the backbone, end to end. Remove and discard the backbone (or save it to make broth). Spread open the chicken, then turn it breast up. Use the heel of your hand to press down firmly on the thickest part of the breast, until the wishbone snaps. Season all over with the spice mixture, rubbing it into the skin. Let stand, uncovered, at room temperature for 30 to 45 minutes.
Heat the oven to 450°F with a rack in the lowest position. Thoroughly pat the chicken dry with paper towels. In a 12-inch oven-safe skillet over medium-high, heat the oil until just smoking. Place the chicken breast down in the pan. Lay a small sheet of foil over the chicken, then place a second heavy skillet or pot on top. Reduce to medium and cook until the skin is golden brown, 10 to 15 minutes, removing the weight and foil and checking every 4 to 5 minutes to ensure even browning.
Using tongs, carefully transfer the chicken to a large plate, turning it breast up. Pour off and discard the fat in the skillet. Slide the chicken breast up back into the pan and place in the oven. Roast until the thickest part of the breast reaches 160°F, 25 to 35 minutes. Carefully transfer the chicken to a cutting board and let rest while you make the sauce.
Set the skillet (the handle will be hot) over medium-high and cook the butter and garlic, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is lightly browned, about 2 minutes. Add the broth and bring to a simmer, scraping up any browned bits, then cook until the garlic is softened and the mixture is lightly thickened and reduced to about ¾ cup, 10 to 15 minutes. Using a silicone spatula, mash the garlic until almost smooth and mix it into the sauce.
Off heat, stir in the cayenne, lemon juice and cilantro, then transfer to a serving bowl. Carve, then serve with the sauce.
Charmoula may be best described as Middle Eastern pesto. Chef-author Molly Stevens version is packed with fresh herbs like parsley, mint and cilantro and enhanced with smoky paprika, toasted cumin, and plenty of garlic. Some of it is used to marinate the lamb, and the remainder is served at the table as a finishing sauce.
While the lamb chops cook in a high heated oven for only 11 minutes, they need to marinate in the charmoula for at least 4 hours (up to 24 hours) and sit at room temperature for an hour before roasting.
This recipe paired the lamb with asparagus and shallot, however we had kale and red onions on hand and therefore opted to make a roasted side dish out of them instead.
Heat small skillet over medium heat. Add cumin seeds and toast until aromatic and slightly darker, stirring occasionally, about 2 minutes. Transfer to processor.
Add parsley leaves and next 6 ingredients to processor. Using on/off turns, process until coarse paste forms. With machine running, gradually add 4 tablespoons oil.
Transfer 2 tablespoons charmoula to small bowl; whisk in lemon juice and remaining 2 tablespoons oil.
Cover and chill to serve with lamb.
Transfer remaining charmoula to large resealable plastic bag. Add lamb chops; seal bag and turn to coat well. Chill at least 4 hours and up to 24 hours.
Let lamb and charmoula sauce in bowl stand at room temperature 1 hour.
Preheat oven to 500°F. Line rimmed baking sheet with foil. Place rack on prepared baking sheet. Place lamb on rack and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Roast until thermometer inserted into center registers 130°F for medium-rare, about 13 minutes. Transfer lamb to platter. Tent with foil and let rest 5 minutes.
Place 2 lamb chops on each of 4 plates. Drizzle lamb with charmoula sauce, passing remaining sauce alongside.
Yogurt is a common marinade throughout the Levant region, a large area in the Eastern Mediterranean region of Western Asia. Not only does it act as a tenderizer, but it also creates a crust on the meat and carries the flavor of the spices (here those are the shawarma heavy-hitters like cumin, coriander, and turmeric).
The chicken can marinate for as little as 30 minutes, or up to 12 hours in the fridge if you’re not in a rush, making it quite doable without tons of planning. Roasting the bird alongside halved shallots and sliced lemons means you get jammy and crispy accompanying bites built right in, cooked in the rich chicken juices.
The original recipe called for 3 shallots, but we more than doubled them to 7 (noted below), all their jammy goodness paired wonderfully with the seasoned chicken, as did the lemon. As sides, we prepared a Warm Farro with Lemon and Herbs dish, and some charred broccoli.
1 lemon, sliced into ¼”-thick rounds, seeds removed
1⁄2 cup water
4 oregano or thyme sprigs, plus leaves for serving
Flaky sea salt (for serving)
Finely grind coriander seeds, cumin seeds, peppercorns, paprika, and turmeric in a spice mill. Transfer spice mixture to a small bowl; whisk in garlic, yogurt, and 2 Tbsp. oil.
Generously season chicken with salt, then smear yogurt mixture all over. Let sit on a rimmed baking sheet at room temperature at least 30 minutes, or chill, uncovered, up to 12 hours. If chilling, let chicken sit at room temperature 30 minutes before roasting.
Preheat oven to 425°. Heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Place chicken, breast side up, in pan, then nestle shallots, cut side down, and lemon slices around. Season shallots and lemon with salt. Tuck in oregano sprigs and cook, undisturbed, until shallots are starting to brown, about 3 minutes.
Pour ½ cup water into pan; transfer skillet to oven, arranging so legs are pointing toward back of oven. Roast until skin has taken on some color, 10–15 minutes. Reduce heat to 325°; continue to roast until chicken is cooked through and tender (an instant-read thermometer inserted into thickest part of breast should register 155°; it will climb to 165° as the chicken rests) and shallots are jammy, 60–70 minutes. Let rest 15 minutes.
Transfer chicken to a cutting board and carve as desired. Arrange on a platter; tuck shallots and lemon slices around. Spoon juices in pan over, top with oregano leaves, and sprinkle with sea salt.
So elegant, yet so simple, this roasted leg of lamb is truly company-worthy. It originally calls for a 4-pound roast, but we had a 2 1⁄2 pounder on hand, so we used that—though we did not cut back on the anchovy-garlic-herbs mixture which lends it so much umami goodness. Even if you are not an anchovy fan, you’d never know they were in the dish because their flavor just melds so perfectly with the other ingredients. DON’T leave them out.
And the icing on the cake so to speak? The bacon slices overlap each other across the top of the roast which create a beautiful crusty and golden exterior. And because our lamb was smaller in size, it took less strips of bacon to cover it.
Paired with baked sweet potatoes and roasted Brussels sprouts, all of which cook at the same 425°F temperature as the lamb—just different lengths of time—everything can be done in just one oven at the same time. Dinner done!
Heat oven to 425 degrees. Place anchovy fillets, garlic and herbs in food processor, and process until finely chopped. With machine running, add olive oil in a thin stream, and process until mixture forms an oily paste. Transfer paste to a small bowl and set aside.
Dry the lamb well with paper towels and open flat on work surface. Sprinkle inside of lamb with salt and pepper and spread paste evenly over it. Roll lamb up tightly. Arrange bacon in overlapping slices on top of lamb, and tie roast as snugly as possible with butcher’s twine.
Heat an oven-proof, 10-12 inch wide skillet over high heat 5 minutes. Sear lamb, bacon side down, until brown, about 4 minutes. Turn lamb with tongs and continue searing until all sides are browned, about 12 minutes total.
Transfer skillet to oven and roast until lamb registers 130 degrees on instant-read meat thermometer, about 40 to 45 minutes. Remove lamb from oven and let rest, covered loosely with foil, at least 10 minutes before slicing.
Here’s a one-pan meal that has risen to the top of our list—pretty much after one bite! The chicken was amazingly moist and juicy, the broccoli florets cooked just right, and the hot, sour and vinegary peperonicini-garlic topping was a WOW factor!
The chicken for Italian pollo alla diavola, or devil’s-style chicken, usually is spatchcocked and grilled. The name is a reference to cooking the chicken over flames and/or the seasonings that make the bird diabolically spicy.
For this easy weeknight version, Milk Street quick-cooks chicken parts instead of a whole bird, seasons them generously with both red pepper flakes and black pepper, then roasts them on a baking sheet in a very hot oven. The broccoli florets also get tossed onto the baking sheet for a complete one-pan dinner. A simple garlic-lemon pan sauce spiked with peperoncini finishes the dish and adds another layer of piquancy.
We used a whole 4-pound-plus chicken. First because, we both prefer different meat options; and secondly because we like to have the extra parts, neck, back, gizards, ect. for our “body bag” which we store in the freezer until such time we need to make homemade chicken stock again. And a whole chicken is typically cheaper than buying the sum of its parts separately. But, yes it is a bit more work. If you prefer to buy already cut up thighs, and or breasts, by all means, do so.
About that broccoli. Don’t cut the crowns into small florets. Keep them in largish 3-inch pieces so they don’t overcook. The baking sheet will be crowded after the broccoli is added, but both the chicken and broccoli reduce in size during cooking.
Two steps not mentioned in the original directions, but that we think are necessary is to, first, massage the chicken parts with oil so that the rub will adhere to the skin. Second, oil the center of the rimmed baking sheet where the garlic cloves will be, and then drizzle a bit more oil over the cloves.
4 12-oz. bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts or 3 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs, trimmed and patted dry
¼ cup plus Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
2 lbs. broccoli crowns, cut into 3-inch florets
8 medium garlic cloves, peeled
1 Tbsp. grated lemon zest, plus lemon wedges to serve
½ cup chopped drained peperonicini
¼ cup lightly packed fresh oregano, chopped
Heat the oven to 475°F with a rack in the middle position.
In a large bowl, stir together the thyme, pepper flakes and 2 teaspoons each salt and black pepper. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the mix onto all sides of the chicken. To the remaining seasoning mix in the bowl, add the ¼ cup oil and the broccoli, then toss to coat.
Place the garlic in the center of a rimmed baking sheet, then arrange the chicken, skin up, around the garlic; this placement helps prevent the garlic from scorching during roasting. Arrange the broccoli in an even layer around the chicken. Roast until the thickest part of the breasts (if using) reaches 160°F and the thickest part of the thighs (if using) reaches 175°F, about 30 minutes.
Using tongs, transfer the chicken and broccoli to a serving platter. Transfer the garlic to a medium bowl and, using a fork, mash to a rough paste.
Carefully pour ¼ cup water onto the baking sheet and scrape up any browned bits. Pour the pan juices over the garlic and add the lemon zest and peperoncini, then whisk in the remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Taste and season with salt and pepper.
Pour the sauce over the chicken and broccoli, then sprinkle with oregano. Serve with lemon wedges.
When it comes to snacking, this gal sits deep in the camp of the spicy and savory. I had about a half-pound of pecans that I wanted to spice up—without sugar, as many candied varieties include. I found just what I was looking for on kitchn.com, and now consider myself an addict (The Hubs too!).
While the recipe below is for a whole pound, I only made half of it, mainly because that’s the amount of nuts we had on hand. It was New Year’s Eve and we were spending the evening home alone, so I made this as one of our treats for the celebration. Well, we couldn’t stop ourselves from munching on them during the afternoon, so I had to hide them from ourselves until party time!
There is no denying the power of the pecan, and here are a few reasons why according to American Heart Association. Pecans reduce the risk of heart disease with an abundance of “good” heart healthy fats. These unsaturated fats can have a protective effect by lowering total blood cholesterol when eaten in moderation.
They contain more than 19 vitamins and minerals—including vitamin A, vitamin E, folic acid, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, several B vitamins and zinc. One ounce of pecans provides 10 percent of the recommended daily value for fiber. Also, a natural, high-quality source of protein they contain very few carbohydrates and no cholesterol and are naturally sodium-free.
And if that isn’t enough, pecans, especially these, are just so dang good!
While we know salmon isn’t a Mediterranean fish, this recipe riff from “Patricia Wells at Home in Provence,” uses high-impact Provençal ingredients which are an ideal match for the rich, meaty fillets. Here, steamed fish sits atop a bed of sliced fennel to add sweet, licorice-like perfume; after cooking, the tender-crisp slices make a delicious accompaniment.
The sharp flavors of the warm olive, caper and lemon vinaigrette complement both fish and fennel. Cook the salmon to medium doneness—that is, until only the center is translucent. For well-done fillets, steam the fish for a couple minutes longer than indicated.
If you prefer white fish over salmon, thick fillets of striped bass or sea bass work well, but increase the steaming time to about 10 minutes. No matter the type of fish you choose, try to select fillets of equal thickness so they cook at the same rate.
Don’t uncover the pot while the fish is steaming, as loss of steam will slow the cooking. Instead, simply set a timer (or tell Alexa to remind you 😉 ). Note to the wise: When opening the pot, angle the lid away from you to avoid a burst of steam to the face.
We chose broccoli rabe as the other side dish. By par-boiling it first, much of the bitterness is eradicated. Once chilled in an ice bath and drained, any extra moisture is wrung out in a clean dish towel. A little garlic, olive oil and red pepper flakes give it a boost of flavor when reheated in a pan.
Fennel-Steamed Salmon with Warm Olive and Caper Vinaigrette
2 small fennel bulbs (about 1 lb. total), halved, cored and thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
1 tsp. grated lemon zest, plus ¼ cup lemon juice
Kosher salt and ground black pepper
4 6-oz. salmon fillets, each about 1 inch thick
6 sprigs dill, plus 1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill
1 cup pimento-stuffed green olives, roughly chopped
¼ cup drained capers
¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
¼ tsp. red pepper flakes
In a medium bowl, toss the fennel with the lemon zest and ¼ teaspoon each salt and black pepper; set aside. Season the salmon all over with salt and pepper.
Place a folding steamer basket in a large Dutch oven. Add enough water to fill the bottom of the pot without submerging the basket. Remove the basket. Cover the pot and bring to a simmer over medium-high.
Line the basket with the fennel. Place the salmon skin down on the fennel, then lay the dill sprigs on the fillets. Turn off the heat under the pot, then set the basket in it. Cover and return to a simmer over medium. Steam until the thickest parts of the fillets reach 115°F to 120°F (for medium doneness), 7 to 9 minutes; the fennel should be tender but not completely soft.
Meanwhile, in a small saucepan over medium, combine the olives, capers, oil and pepper flakes. Cook, stirring, just until sizzling gently, about 2 minutes.
Add the lemon juice and cook, stirring, just until warm, another 1 to 2 minutes. Cover and set aside.
When the salmon is done, remove and discard the dill sprigs. Using a metal spatula, transfer the fennel and fillets, skin down, to a serving platter. Sprinkle with the chopped dill, then spoon on the warm sauce.
This is a great meal for a slow, cool Sunday afternoon—provided you have an immersion circulator for the sous vide process. If you don’t own one, Christmas is coming up and it could make your list—just sayin’. Sous vide, which means “under vacuum” in French, refers to the process of vacuum-sealing food in a bag, then cooking it to a very precise temperature in a water bath. This technique produces wonderful results that are impossible to achieve through any other cooking method.
Consistency. Because you cook your food to a precise temperature for a precise amount of time, you can expect very consistent results. Taste. Food cooks in its juices. This ensures that the food is moist, juicy and tender. Waste reduction. Traditionally prepared food dries out and results in waste. For example, on average, traditionally cooked steak loses up to 40% of its volume due to drying out. Steak cooked via precision cooking, loses none of its volume. Flexibility. Traditional cooking can require your constant attention. Precision cooking brings food to an exact temperature and holds it. There is no worry about overcooking.
It’s actually very affordable and easy to get started with sous vide cooking thanks to the recent availability of sous vide devices built for the home cook. We own a Joule which is the smallest sous vide tool on the market. But it’s also the most powerful. It heats to the perfect temperature—no more, no less—which means that your proteins won’t overcook, ever. Even if they cook for extra time.
As far as this recipe, by all means, feel free to use whatever dried herbs you happen to have on hand. Don’t have coriander? No biggie. Only have dried rosemary? Don’t sweat it. Create a taste profile that suits your own preferences. The amounts below indicate how much overall you’ll need.
To begin, season the leg of lamb liberally on both sides with kosher salt. Lay with the fat cap side down and score the top with a sharp pairing knife by dragging the knife across in diagonal lines both ways. Rub your herb mixture all over the scored side. Roll it up, and secure in place with butcher’s twine. Simply, vacuum seal the rolled leg of lamb and she’s ready for her water bath.
Our roast was only 2 1⁄2 pounds and we got 4-5 servings out of it, so a 5-pounder would yield 8-10 servings. It was delicious! We prefer our lamb medium-rare, but if you like yours less pink, adjust the immersion circulator to preheat the water bath temperature as needed.
Using your immersion circulator, preheat water bath to 130° F.
Add all the ingredients except the lamb, ghee, and salsa verde ingredients to a food processor or use a mortar and pestle to grind them into a paste.
Season the leg of lamb liberally on both sides with additional kosher salt. Lay with the fat cap side down (you can trim this if you want) and score the top with a sharp pairing knife (this means dragging the knife across in diagonal lines both ways).
Rub the herb mixture all over the scored side. Roll it up, and secure in place with butcher’s twine.
Vacuum seal the rolled leg of lamb or add to a gallon-sized zipper top bag and remove all the air. Add to preheated water bath and cook for 3-5 hours.
When done, remove from the water bath and bag. Pat leg of lamb as dry as possible with paper towels.
Get a cast iron skillet searing hot—as hot as possible—and add enough ghee to coat the skillet. Sear the leg of lamb on all sides until golden brown. You may need to prop up the lamb roast with tongs to make sure it is browned all over.
Let the leg of lamb rest for a moment on the cutting board. Prep the salsa verde by mixing together all ingredients. Taste and adjust seasoning as desired.
Remove the twine from the leg of lamb and slice into 1/2 inch slices. Top with salsa verde and serve!
Spinach artichoke chicken is an easy and delicious keto skillet recipe. It features crispy chicken thighs in a rich cream sauce with spinach, artichokes, garlic, and parmesan. However, the original recipe only called for half (which we deemed too paltry) of the spinach and artichokes so we doubled that, as noted in the list below. Also, we added two more thighs to total eight, allowing two per person for a dinner feeding four.
This AMAZING recipe takes all the rich flavors of a great spinach artichoke dip and turns it into a full meal. And it’s an easy one pan recipe that’s ready in about an hour. Truly delicious! Typically, I am more of a white meat fan, while The Hubs prefers dark meat. Next time I may include a mix of thighs and chicken breast quarters, but again, maybe not…
Instead of frozen, fresh spinach works in this recipe as well. You obviously won’t need to thaw and squeeze it; simply chop it up and stir it into the sauce before transferring the dish to the oven.
Preheat the oven to 350F. Pat the chicken thighs dry and sprinkle all over with the Italian seasoning, salt, and pepper.
Heat the oil over medium heat in a large (at least 12″) ovenproof skillet. Add the chicken thighs, skin side down, and cook undisturbed for 3 to 4 minutes, until golden brown. (Our chicken skin took 8 minutes to get a nice golden brown.)
Flip the thighs over and cook another 4 minutes, then transfer to a plate. Drain most of the fat from the pan and discard.
Add the garlic to the pan and sauté until fragrant, about 1 minute.
Stir in the broth to deglaze the pan, scraping up any browned bits. Bring to a simmer. Add the cream and Parmesan and continue to cook until slightly thickened, another minute or two.
Stir in the chopped artichokes and the spinach until well combined. Place the chicken thighs on top of the cream sauce and bake 20 to 25 minutes, until the chicken is cooked through to a temp of 170° to 175°, and the sauce is bubbling.