Soft Polenta and Black Bean Ragoût
As you eat soft polenta right out of the pot, it will slowly solidify. That phenomenon is one of the delightful textural changes you may enjoy in this preparation. An ideal accompaniment is grilled or roast, or even braised, lamb on top, cooked so the juices spill all over the polenta. If you grill or roast the lamb, use about 2 pounds lamb shoulder, rub it with a tablespoon of ground fennel seeds, salt, and pepper, and grill slowly (indirectly) or roast slowly (about 300°F) for 3 hours.
Croque-monsieur is the French version of a grilled ham-and- cheese sandwich. This recipe is the traditional croquet monsieur recipe, the closest to the original sandwich served in Parisian cafés in the early 1900s. Today, it’s a popular snack all over France, and the variations are countless. Remember, the better your bread, the better the sandwich.
John Besh’s Shrimp Creole
This Shrimp Creole has Vietnamese influences; it’s spicy and sweet and full of herbs and flavor.
Basic Louisiana Rice
This recipe will work with most long-grain rices, including Popcorn Rice. Save some of the fat skimmed from your chicken stock to perfume the rice with many wonderful flavors.
Stewed Okra and Tomatoes
This classic New Orleans dish combines okra and tomatoes to bring out the best flavors of each.
New Orleans Red Beans and Rice
Time is the key to making successful red beans: they need to cook slowly and well.
Chile and Lime Chicken Potato Tacos
A great basic recipe that is easily adapted to suit your tastes or what’s in the fridge.
Chinese Slow-Cooked Pork
Star anise, soy and ginger add wonderful flavours to this deliciously tender pork casserole, simmered with carrots and mushrooms. Rice noodles cooked in exotic, rich juices make this into a complete meal that is sure to impress.
Warm Sesame Chicken Salad
Strips of chicken in a crisp coating of sesame seeds, breadcrumbs and cornflakes are served on a crunchy vegetable salad dressed with a fresh herb vinaigrette. A little chili powder in the coating gives the salad a bit of a kick.
Easy Asian Seafood Paella
Like its Spanish cousin, this paella is brimming with seafood and spicy chorizo. The dish is a spectacular presentation and a meal-in-one feast.
Asian Hot and Sour Slaw
Shredded slaw mixes and shredded carrots in supermarket produce section are particularly useful for preparing vegetable side dishes that complement all types of grilled and barbecued dishes.
Five-Spice Quinoa with Toasted Almonds
Five-spice powder is a seasoning that usually includes star anise, cinnamon, licorice root, fennel, and black or Sichuan pepper. It plays well against the slight nuttiness of quinoa, a grain that is rich in protein. Toasting the quinoa in a little oil adds a pleasing nuance of flavor. If the quinoa is sold in bulk or loose, I recommend rinsing it. If it’s in a package, you may omit this step.
Roasted Tomatoes and Parmesan Grits
I adore roasted tomatoes and I practically live for creamy grits, so one fateful day, I combined my two loves. If I do say so myself, it was a stroke of genius. The two complement each other in total harmonies of texture, flavor, and color.
Appalachian Trail Mix
The Appalachian Trail is a footpath that leads all the way from Georgia to Maine. For hiking or a simple stroll through the neighborhood, a snack of trail mix is an easy way to boost energy and get a quick protein punch.
Candied Walnuts with Sprimp in Spicy Garlic Sauce
Shrimp is marinated in a simple, spicy sauce and then sauteed with bell peppers and onions for exciting flavor without the extra fat and mess of deep-frying.