FIG, BLUE CHEESE,
SHERRY VINAIGRETTE MAK E S 4 C U P S
Sw eet ﬁgs, sharp blue cheese, and peppery arugula make for a colorful and refreshing main or side salad burstin g w ith ﬂavor. Great for hot evenings in the summer ! If fresh ﬁgs aren’t available, rotate seasonal fruits like Asian pears or straw berries.
10 ounces baby arugula leaves
IN A MIXING BOWL, combi n e the arugula, figs, and chees e.
8 fresh Mission figs, stemmed, halved,
Drizzle with the vinaig ret t e, season with salt and pep p er. Toss the
and sliced crosswise (about 2 cups
ingred i en ts toget h er to lightly to coat.
sli ce d ) 2 ounces blue cheese, crumbled into medium-size chunks (about
/ cup Sherry Vinaigrette
½ teaspoon coarse salt ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
SHERRY VINAIGRETTE This Sherry Vinaigr ette is a go-to multipur pos e dressing, and thankf ully this recipe can easily be doubled so it’s alw ays on hand. Be sure to try it on a simple salad or over any of your favorite grilled vegetables , such as summer squash, bell peppers , and eggplant.
1 small shallot, mi nc ed
IN A SMALL MIXING BOWL OR MASON JAR, combi n e the
2 tablespoons honey or agave nectar
shallot, honey, sherry and balsami c vinegars, and olive and canol a
3 tablespoons sherry vinegar 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup canola oil 1 teaspoon coarse salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black
oils; seaso n with salt and pep p er. Whisk or shake to blend. Keep any leftover vinaig ret t e covered in the refri g erat or for up to 1 week. Ma ke s 1 c u p
SERV E S 4 — MAK E S 2 C UP S SAU C E
tenderizing, the most effective marinades are those
as buttermilk and yogurt. Yogurt is mildly acidic,
so it doesn’t make the meat
products, such tough or mushy,
the w ay strongly acidic marinades can. Thick Greek yogur t really sticks to the chicken (and also lamb) and makes the meat tasty and tender. Tzatsiki is a cool cucumber-y ogur t sauce that makes a healthful dip for cut-up vegetables . For best results, the chicken needs to marinate for a couple of days, so plan accordingly. Leftovers make a terriﬁc sandw ich (page 159).
1 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
TO PREPARE THE MARINAD E, in a mixing bowl combi n e the
½ cup fresh oregano leaves,
yogurt, oreg an o, onion, garlic, lemon juice and zest, and red pep-
per flakes, stirring with a spoon. Put the chicken in a plastic stor-
1 onion, grated 4 garlic cloves, mi nc ed Juice and finely grated zest of
to thorou g h ly coat in the marin ad e. Press out the air, seal the bag, and marin ate the chicken in the refri g erat or for at least 24 hours,
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes 4 (6-ounce ) ski n l e s s
age bag; add the yogurt mixture, and smoos h the chicken aroun d
preferab ly up to 2 days.
chicken breast halves
TO PREPARE THE TZATSI KI,
dice the cucu m b er into small pieces
1 tablespoon canola oil
or shred with the large holes of a box grater. Mix the cucu m b er
Coarse salt and freshly ground black
pieces in a strainer with the salt, and let stand in the sink or over
pepper TZ ATSI K I 1 hothouse cucumber, ends trimmed,
a bowl for about 30 minutes, shaking and turnin g a few times to drain the water. After the cucu m b ers are drai n ed, squeez e them in a dish towel to get out most of the liquid, and trans fer them to a
halved lengthwise, and seeds
large bowl. Using a wood en spoon, stir in the yogurt, lemon juice,
scooped out with a spoon
dill, garlic, and pepp e r to combin e. Refrigerat e the tzatsiki for at
2 teaspoons coarse salt
least 1 hour to allow the flavors to come toget h e r.
2 cups plain nonfat Greek yogurt Juice of 2 lemons
WHEN READY TO COOK THE CHICKEN, preh e at
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh
or grill pan to mediu m -hi g h heat. Rub the grates with oil to pre-
dill leaves 2 garlic cloves, minc ed
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
an outdo o r grill
vent sticking. Remove the chick en from the marinad e, wiping off any excess yogurt so it doesn’t burn on the grill. Seas o n both sides of the chick en breas ts with a fair amou nt of salt and pep p er. Sear for 8 to 10 minut es, rotati n g them halfway throu gh cooki ng to “ mark” them. Turn the chicken over and grill the other side for 4 to 6 more minutes. Serve the grilled chicken with the tzatsiki sauce.
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CITRUS-POACHED SALMON, MUSTARD SAUCE S E RV E S 4
Poaching ﬁsh is an easy, healthy w ay to get dinner on the table in a ﬂash. This bright, tangy citrus broth made with orange, lemon, lime, dill, and w hite w ine enhances the forw ard ﬂavor of the salmon, and also doubles as the base for the mustar d sauce. The poached salmon also makes a terriﬁc salad for a hearty sandw ich (page 164).
2 cups vegetable broth or water
TO PREPARE THE POACHING LIQUID FOR THE SALMON,
the broth and wine into a wide, shallow skillet or pot. Add the
cup dry white wine, such as Sauvignon Blanc
Juice of 1 seedless orange, plus 3 sli ce s
orang e, lemon, and lime juices, the sliced citrus, garlic, dill sprigs, and pepp erco rn s. Cover the pan and bring the liquid to a full
Juice of 1 lemon, plus 3 slices
boil over mediu m -h i g h heat. You want to let the flavors of the
Juice of 1 lime, plus 3 slices
aromat i cs infuse into the liquid. Once it comes to a boil, reduce
2 garlic cloves
the heat to medium -l o w and conti n u e to simmer gently for abo ut
2 fresh dill sprigs, plus 1 tablespoon
chopped 1 teaspoon whole black pepperco r n s
SEASON THE SALMON
PER. Lay the fillets in the pan (the liquid should come up halfway ),
wild salmon fillets,
skin removed Coarse salt
WITH SALT AND PEP
cover, and simmer over mediu m -l o w heat until the salmon is barely opaq ue in the cent er, abo ut 6 to 8 minutes. Take care to
Freshly ground black pepper 1 tablespoon unsalted butter 1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard 1½ teaspoons smooth Dijon mustard 1 teaspoon honey or agave nectar
ensu re that the liquid never gets hot eno u g h to boil. Remove the salmon to a side plate. TO PREPARE THE MUSTARD
SAUCE, pour 1 cup of the poachi n g
liquid into a small pot, discardi ng the rest. Simmer over mediu m heat to redu c e the liquid by half. Whisk in the butter, whole grain and smooth mustard s, honey, and cho p p ed dill; seaso n with salt and pepp er if needed. Pour the mustard sauce over the fish befo re serving.
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BEEF STROGANOFF SERV E S 4 TO 6 ( MAK E S 6 C U P S )
Some recipes age w ell, evoking memories of simpler times, and Stroganoff is a deﬁnite throw bac k to my childhood. Every Monday night, my tw elve cousins and I w ould gather for supper in my grandmother Susie’s kitchen, w afting w ith the smell of stew ed meat and noodles at the door. This updated family classic gets striped dow n to bare essentials L.A. style. To grandmother ’s house w e go!
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
PLACE A 3-QUAR T POT OVER MEDIUM HEAT and add 2
1 onion, diced
tables p o o n s of the butter. When the butter has melted, toss in
8 ounces button mushrooms (3 cups),
wiped of grit, stemmed, and halved if large Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper 1 tablespoon paprika
¼ cup tomato past e 2 cups tomato puree 1 quart Traditional Beef Short Rib braising liquid (see page 109), or low-sodium beef broth 1 pound Traditional Beef Short Rib
mushrooms. Cook and
stir until the
begin to brown, about 5 minutes. Season with
salt, pep p er, and paprika. STIR IN THE TOMATO
PASTE AND PUREE. Pour in the braising
liquid and simmer, uncov e red, until the liquid cooks down and thickens slightly, abo ut 10 minutes. Fold the beef into the liquid and contin u e to cook until heat ed throu g h. ROLL THE REMAINING 1 TABLE SP O ON
OF BUTTER IN THE
FLOUR and whisk into the sauce, taking care to smooth out any
(see page 109), shredded (about
lumps. Cook and stir until the sauce thickens. Remove from the
3½ cups )
heat and stir in the sour cream. Shower the top with parsley. Serve
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
½ cup sour cre a m ½ bunch fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped Cooked buttered egg noodles, for serving
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with buttere d egg noodles.
CAESAR CLUB, TURKEY, HAM, TOMATO S E RV E S 4
While the most w idely accepted story is that the Caesar salad w as invented in Tijuana, I think of it as early Califor nia cuisine. Much more a Mediterr anean fusion w ith Califor nia sensibilities , today the classic salad is as much L.A. as the Cobb. Here, it takes on a w hole new life w hen shingled with tender slices of roasted meats and tomato, and sw athed betw een crusty pieces of bread! Creamy, garlic ky, and salty, this indulge nt sandw ich is a Lemonade classic and not to be missed. Serve pools ide w ith a glass of Water melon, Rosemary lemonade (page 230).
2 small hearts of Romaine, ends trimmed, dark green leaves discarded, and cut crosswise into
½ -inch pieces (about 2 cups ) ½ cup Caesar Dressing (see page 36) ½ cup shaved Parmesan ½ teaspoon freshly ground black
IN A MIXING BOWL, combi n e the romai ne and Caesar dress-
ing. Toss with tongs, until the lettuce is fully and evenly coat ed. Sprinkle in the Parm es an and pepp e r, tossing again to distrib ut e the ingred i ent s. Set aside. In a small bowl, comb i ne the mayo nn ai s e and mustard, stirring with a spoon until well blend ed .
½ cup mayonnaise ¼ cup whole grain Dijon mustard 8 slices whole grain bread, toas te d preferably
½ pound sliced Black Forest ham ½ pound sliced roasted turkey breas t, deli or leftover s 1 to 2 red Beefsteak tomat oe s , cut into
TO BUILD THE SANDWICH E S, spread
1 tables p o o n of mayo-
mustard on each piece of toast ed bread. Divide the sliced ham and turkey evenly across 4 of the bread slices, which will be the botto m halves of the sandwi ch es. Shingle 2 slices of tomat o on top. Pile ½ cup of the Caesar salad evenly across the top. Put the remai n ing 4 slices of bread on top to enclos e the sandwi ch. Cut the sand wi ch es in half on the diagon al.
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TORTILLA SOUP MAK E S 8 C U PS
The origin of Tortilla Soup may be south of the border, but the intrigu ing ﬂavor has long made it a Califor nia favorite. Betw een the smoky spices, soothing tomato broth, and pile of ﬁxings, w hat’s not to love? While there are many variations , it’s the ground tortillas that give the soup a unique thickness and ﬂavor. Simple to prepare, skip straining this blended soup for a more rustic presentation. If you want to add protein, top w ith shredded chicken or black beans.
2 tablespoons canola oil
COAT A SOUP POT WITH THE OIL and put over medium heat.
1 large onion, chopped
When the oil is hot, add the onion and garlic. Cook and stir until
4 garlic cloves, mi nc ed
the onion begins to soften but not brown, about 3 minutes.
1 teaspoon coarse salt 1 teaspoon chili powder
Season with salt, chili powder, cayenne, cumin, and oregano. Cook
½ teaspoon cayenne pepper ½ teaspoon ground cumin
taking care not to burn. Pour in the diced tomatoes and broth.
1 tablespoon fresh oregano leaves, chopped
and stir for about 2 minutes or until the spices become fragrant, Simmer until the tomatoes thicken slightly, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
1 (28-ounc e) can diced tomat oe s , with jui ce
THE HEAT TO MEDIUM-HIGH, and bring the soup to a
1½ quarts low-sodium chicken broth
boil. Add the tortilla chips. Simmer until the chips soften and break
3 cups fried corn tortilla strips, plus
down into the soup, about 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.
more for serving Cubed avocado, cilantro, sour cre am,
WORKING IN BATCHES, ladle the soup into a blender filling it
shredded cheese, and lime wedges,
no more than halfway. Puree for a few seconds until completely
smooth; be sure to hold down the lid with a kitchen towel for safety. If you have an immersion blender, this is a great time to use it. IF DESIRED, PASS THE SOUP THROUGH a fine-mesh strainer
into a terrine or other pot, pushing the solids with the back of a wooden spoon. Discard the vegetable pieces. Repeat with the remaining soup. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper if needed. SERVE THE SOUP WITH Y OUR FAVORITE TOPPINGS, such as
tortilla chips, avocado, cilantro, sour cream, shredded cheese, and fresh lime.
SOUPS + STUFF
POT DE CRÈME
S E RV E S 6
Super silky and out-of- this-w or ld delicious, Chocolate Pot de Crème is a grow n-up version of chocolate pudding. This no-bake take on the classic French dessert could not be simpler. For best results, seek out ﬁne-quality chocolate like Scharffenber ger, Callebaut, and Guittar d. Keep in mind the custard needs to chill for at least 4 hours to set up, so plan ahead.
1 cup milk ¾ cup heavy cre a m 1½ cups finely chopped dark choc ol a te 3 large eggs ½ cup sugar Whipped cream, for serving
PREHEAT THE OVEN TO 325 DEGREES F. BRING THE MILK AND CREAM TO A SIMMER in a medium pot.
Add the chopped chocolate, stirring with a rubber spatula until completely smooth. Remove from the heat. IN A LARGE BOWL, whisk together the eggs and the sugar until
well combined, about 3 minutes. Temper the eggs by gradually whisking the hot chocolate cream into the egg and sugar mixture; do not add the hot chocolate cream too quickly or the eggs will scramble. POUR THE MIXTURE
INTO SIX 4-OUNCE RAMEKINS,
three-qua rte rs of the way full with mixture. Pop them in the fridge to chill for at least 4 hours or preferably overnight. Top with a dollop of whipped cream before serving.
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