Gravlax: The Easy Cure for New Year’s

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contributed by Katy Morris

photos courtesy of Sugar and Olives

On an inconspicuous side street in Norwalk, CT, sits an eccentric French-inspired culinary “kitchen and lounge” that serves delicious, locally sourced, organic fare.  Sugar & Olives, owned by Jennifer Balin, opened after she bought and transformed a former factory space into an open commercial kitchen and dining area using sustainable and recycled materials when possible.

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Warming Up with Hearty Lentil Soup

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At the end of my Thanksgiving cooking marathon, I began to squirrel away homemade turkey stock, turkey gravy and remnants of glistening tomatoey broth from my slow cooked brisket. Just as my freezer shelf was beginning to look like a frozen wonderland of rich liquid leftovers I was asked by Red Envelope, the nifty gift catalogue, to submit my favorite wintry recipe for them to share with their thousands of readers.

How could a food blogger resist? Continue reading

What’s the Skinny on Chestnuts?

chestnut risotto Marcia Selden Catering

Recipe courtesy of Marcia Selden Catering, Stamford, CT

Chestnuts roasting on an open fire… hard not to hum along, I know.  But what’s the skinny on chestnuts? And what about actually roasting them on an open fire?

Chef Robin Selden helped me out here with lots of interesting facts and useful tips in addition to the easy and fragrant recipe for Truffled Chestnut Risotto, below.

Let’s start with that oft referred to “roasting on an open fire”: Continue reading

Toasting Leftovers with Beer Braised Pulled Turkey Tacos

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Let’s be honest. The day after the big feast we are P-O-O-P-E-D.  Oh yea, the clean-up was one for the ages, too, with the splatters from frying latkes and stove-top smears from simmering sufganiyot (yes, doughnuts!) on this once in a life time Thanksgivukah.

 So when Kol Foods asked a eight bloggers to play with a couple of turkey legs and come up with a recipe for our post- Thanksgivukah leftovers, I was determined to hone in on something EASY.

And then my competitive spirit was aroused when I understood that this is a contest. And the winners get prizes. Oh yes, Happy Chanukah, indeed. Click here to vote on your favorite recipe and to have a chance to win a generous credit with Kol Foods. Continue reading

Portabella Mushroom Pizza Satisfies that Craving

Bette's vegan portobello pizza and some cheesy

There’s something about ‘shrooms that speaks of Autumn to me. Perhaps it’s their meaty heft and deep, rich flavors.  Yet somehow, I didn’t mind feasting on these when we ate them in Bend, Oregon this summer. These vegetarian, gluten-free mushroom pizzas  are simple to whip up and would be a blast for teens to take charge of.   Continue reading

Corn Souffle Bids Farewell to Summer

Corn Souffle

Written and photographed by Melissa Roberts

September is a month with an identity crisis. What can we depend on weather wise? Each day is a new surprise. A crisp snap of autumn one moment, the next, temps climb into the 90s. And when a holiday comes around (Sukkot, so soon?), how do we plan accordingly? Luckily, mid September continues to bring late summer’s harvest of tomatoes, corn, and fresh herbs. Continue reading

Imam Bayeldi but Let’s Hope You Don’t

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Did you know that summer leeks are traditional on Sephardic tables on Rosh Hashanah?  I did not. Here’s how it goes:

The Aramaic word for leeks is “karti”, which is very similar to the Hebrew, “yikartu”, meaning to “cut off”. We pray that our enemies will be “cut off”, allowing for safety and security of the Jewish people and all of our friends.

Long, layered stalks of Leeks are neatly lined up in your local markets now along with the long-awaited abundance of perfectly ripe tomatoes and gorgeous eggplants.

This is how we connect seasonal ingredients to holiday dishes. Yup, it goes beyond apples and pomegranates, for sure.

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Chilled Soups Highlight Summer Produce

photo: Marcia Selden Catering

photo: Marcia Selden Catering

Marcia Selden Catering

If the thought of summer entertaining makes you sweat as you envision standing over a hot stove, consider trying one of these unique, delicious, chilled soups.  Continue reading