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Posts from the ‘Main Course’ Category

Quinotto de Champiñones

I usually dread fall-back but I’ve been looking forward to daylight savings for weeks. Normally a morning person, getting up in the pitch black, confusing the still bright streetlamps with my alarm clock, and starting every day with the say-it-aint-sos was really getting to me. For once, I was willing to trade darker afternoons for brighter mornings. Of course, playing mind games with the sun has its price. As someone with penchant for photographing their food, I’m sure I’ll be cursing the change when I’m trying to get a decent picture at 3-o’-clock in the afternoon. Read more

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Fainá a Caballo

My oven and I have been locked in a battle of wills – and I’m losing. It will work just fine for a couple of days, do whatever I ask of it, then for no particular reason refuse to heat up at all. Its left me with unroasted tomatoes, ungratined cheese, unbaked cakes and generally frustrated. Getting anything fixed in my apartment is an ordeal and I’ve had no fewer than three visits from the building’s supers where they stand in the kitchen, look over the oven, agree that “yes, it’s not working”, then leave. While I appreciate their sympathy, the nodding isn’t getting me any closer to 350 degrees. Read more

Chiles Rellenos con Camarones al Chipotle

The weeks between Mardi Gras and Easter are defined by what you can’t do (or can’t do just yet) – light jackets but schizophrenic weather, longer days but dark morning commutes – a period of austerity before it’s all bunnies, baskets and tulips. While I’m far from orthodox, I do try to follow the no-meat on Friday rule during lent (though full confession I only seem to remember halfway through a turkey sandwich or mid-Korean barbecue).  With friends coming over, the timing was right for seafood. Read more

New Routine

I’ve spent the last couple of weeks under water.  Not that I’ve been unusually busy, I’ve just returned to my aqua girl routines in hopes of washing away the holiday excess – drinking water like it’s my job, swimming laps like I’m being chased by a shark, and looking to add more fish to my weekly diet.  Cooking fish has always made me nervous.  At best, I worry that I’ll let it go too long and over cook it, at worst, that I’ll poison everyone I love in one fell swoop.  I usually stick to the sushi grade varieties in the belief that if I’d just as soon eat it raw, there isn’t anything I can do to make it deadly.  Still, no one likes a rut and the guys at the fish store automatically move towards the salmon before I’ve even placed my order.  Sometimes I’ll change it to tuna or trout just to keep them guessing but I’m pretty sure it’s daring only to me.  After a few weeks of seeing pargo (snapper) on every Cuban restaurant menu in Miami, I thought it was time switch things up again. Read more

Gnocchi à l’Alsacienne

I was looking for my monthly (well I try) ñoquis del 29 recipe and found Thomas Keller’s gnocchi à l’Alsacienne from Bouchon.  I’m always drawn to Keller recipes when I’m getting ready for a long run.  For last winter’s NYC half marathon it was ad hoc at home’s farro and black rice with roasted autumn squash and this time it was his gnocchi with butternut squash and mushrooms before next week’s full marathon, though both involve a lot of rotating pans and squash cubing just when I’m supposed to be resting up and tapering down. Read more

Chiles en Nogada

I saw a reference describing end of summer/start of fall cooking as “valedictory meals”.  I prefer to think of this time as a cross-fade.  As one season quiets down, another one starts to roar, but for at least a moment they make the same sound.  To take advantage of the markets in transition, I made an Argentinian Carbonada Criolla, a heavy beef stew lightened with peaches, pears and corn served in a pumpkin last September.  This year I decided to try Mexico’s chiles en nogada.  Pork or beef picadillo stuffed into poblano chiles, it’s covered in a chilled, creamy walnut sauce and garnished with pomegranate seeds.  Read more

Soufflé de Quinoa

Nothing takes the fear out of making a soufflé like making three in a row.  I found a recipe for one combined with amaranth that I couldn’t wait to try.  My training for this year’s New York City marathon is nearing the 20-mile mark so I’ve been cooking up batches of  amaranth to have on hand for cereal topped with honey and fruit.  While adding eggs and cheese may not be the best way to enjoy my vitamin high grain, it sounded wonderful and I’d been so good. Read more