Fresh turmeric is easier to find these days than it used to be. Most health food stores sell it and it can be procured in slightly upscale markets like Whole Foods. This bright orange rhizome (same family as ginger) is wild with color, flavor, and medicinal properties (it is good for literally everything that ails you). Paired with butter to tame its bitter edge, it is a marvel with chicken. This one-pan dinner creates crisp chicken bathed in brilliantly-colored and -flavored juices, so serve over steamed rice or with couscous, or alongside a hunk of crusty bread.
8 chicken thighs, skin on, bone in
1 2-inch piece fresh turmeric root, grated fine, or 1 teaspoon dried turmeric powder
8 whole cloves garlic, unpeeled, top ¼-inch removed (so you can more easily access the soft garlic once its cooked)
½ lemon, very thinly sliced (rind too) and pits removed
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut in small pieces
Kosher salt and a peppermill
- Preheat the oven to 375ºF. In a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, toss the chicken with the turmeric, garlic cloves, lemon slices, and olive oil. Sprinkle generously with salt and pepper and dot with the butter, evenly distributing it.
- Roast until the chicken skin is golden brown and the juices are bubbly, at least 45 minutes. Baste the chicken skin with the juices halfway through cooking.
- Serve hot or at room temperature.
- If this sort of flavorful, one-dish cooking style appeals to you, then you are a candidate for our Quick + Ridiculously Delicious Dinners class.
Smoky Black Bean and Sweet Potato Soup
Nothing is more comforting than a 30 minutes-to-prepare black bean soup. Make lots: Leftovers can be frozen for the next time you want a comforting bowl of soup.
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
4 large cloves garlic, roughly chopped
2 stalks celery, roughly chopped
1 tablespoon smoked paprika or 1 chipotle pepper in adobo (will make soup very spicy)
1 tablespoon ground cumin
Dash of cayenne pepper (not if using chipotle pepper)
1 14-ounce can diced tomatoes
2 large sweet potatoes, peeled, and cut in 1/2 inch cubes (you can also sub butternut squash cubes)
3 15-ounce cans black beans, drained (not rinsed)
1 quart vegetable or chicken broth
Fresh lime juice, as needed
Sour cream or Greek yogurt, for serving
In a large, heavy soup pot, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions, garlic, and celery, and cook until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add spices (or chipotle) and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in the tomatoes, squash, and beans and enough broth to just cover the beans with liquid. Bring the mixture to a boil, reduce heat to low, and simmer, covered, until the squash is tender, about 20 minutes. Transfer one-quarter of the soup to a food processor or blender and puree until smooth (be careful not the fill the blender more than halfway full, because the hot soup may explode out the top…place a kitchen towel over the lid before pureeing to be on the safe side!). Stir the puree back into the soup and season with salt and lime juice. Serve hot with sour cream or Greek yogurt, as desired.
- From our Winter Soups class.
Mashed Potatoes and Celery Root with Melted Leeks
Serves 6 to 8
This is a slam-dunk recipe for Thanksgiving. Only slightly more involved than regular mashed potatoes, but people will go nuts when they take a bite. The celery root and creamed leeks blend right in with the potatoes, so the first bite is a wild surprise of flavor.
If you find yourself with leftovers, make soup. Just thin with enough chicken stock (and a dash of cream) to achieve the right consistency.
6 large russet potatoes (about 3 pounds), peeled and cut in 2-inch pieces
1 large celery root, peeled and cut in 2-inch pieces
4 large leeks, white and pale-green parts, sliced thin
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup half-and-half or heavy cream
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- In a large pot, cover the potatoes and celery root with 2 inches of water, and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to medium, cover, and cook until the vegetables are tender, about 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the butter over medium heat. Add leeks, and reduce heat to medium-low. Slowly cook leeks until they are almost melting, about 20 minutes, covering them with a lid if they begin to brown instead of soften. Remove from heat, and transfer to a food processor with the cream. Process until very smooth.
- When the potatoes are ready, drain them, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid. Mash the potatoes, adding about ¼ cup of the cooking liquid or more as needed, until relatively smooth. Stir in the leek purée. Season with salt and pepper, adding a bit of reserved cooking liquid if the potatoes are too dry. Serve hot.
- Need help preparing for the upcoming holiday? Check out our Thanksgiving Tutorial class!
Indian Butter-Braised Vegetables (Cabbage Poriyal)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter or extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon finely minced fresh ginger
2 teaspoons black mustard seeds
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 teaspoons split red lentils (optional)
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
2 teaspoons ground coriander
1 teaspoon turmeric
1 small onion, thinly sliced
1 small cabbage (or 1/2 large), cored and sliced thin
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
3 tablespoons unsweetened shredded coconut
1 cup frozen peas, thawed (or not)
1/2 cup whole milk yogurt OR 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
Heat the oil over medium heat in a large skillet. Add the mustard seeds, cumin seeds, and lentils. Cook for 1 minute, or until the mustard seeds start to pop. Add the chiles or cayenne, coriander and turmeric and cook for 30 seconds more. Add the onion and cook, stirring, until it begins to soften, about 3 minutes. Add the cabbage and ½ cup water, cover, reduce heat to low, and cook until softened, about 10 minutes. Uncover add the salt, coconut, peas and yogurt or lemon juice, and cook for another minute, until heated through. Season to taste with more salt and more acidifiers, as needed to brighten the flavors.
- If you like this recipe, join us for more great recipes at our Introduction to Indian Cooking class.
Roasted Delicata Squash
There are a whole host of spices that pair magically with delicate squash. Try them all, but not at the same time: curry powder, cumin, smoked paprika, and sumac, adding about 1 tablespoon along with the salt.
2 large delicata squash, cut in half lengthwise and seeds removed with a spoon
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
- Preheat the oven to 400°. Cut the squash into ½-inch half moons.
- In a large mixing bowl, toss the squash with the oil, salt, and pepper. Transfer to a baking sheet and spread out in a single layer as best you can.
- Bake until the squash is golden and tender, about 25 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature. They are also delicious cold from the fridge, as a snack, hummus dipper or salad topping.
- From our Fall Vegetarian Suppers class.
Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Apple Cider Pan Gravy
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
2 pork tenderloins (about ¾ pound each)
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small onion, thinly sliced
2 apples, peeled and thinly sliced
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 cup apple cider
½ cup chicken broth
1 sprig fresh rosemary
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar or red wine vinegar
- Heat 2 tablespoons of the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Season the tenderloins with salt and pepper and add to the hot skillet. Cook until browned on all sides, a total of 8 minutes (it will not be fully cooked). Transfer the tenderloins to a plate to rest.
- Add another tablespoon of oil to the hot skillet and then add the onions and sliced apples and cook until lightly browned, about 5 minutes. Add the flour and cook until it just disappears. Add the apple cider, chicken broth, rosemary, and vinegar and cook until the gravy thickens, about 2 minutes.
- Return the tenderloins to the skillet along with any accumulated juices. Cover, reduce heat to low, and simmer until the pork registers 140° on an instant read thermometer, about 5 minutes more.
- Transfer the pork to a cutting board and let rest for 5 minutes. Season the gravy with salt and pepper, and more vinegar if needed to make it “bright.” Slice the tenderloin and serve the medallions with the rich gravy.
From our Pork Lovers Workshop.
Garlicky Broccoli Rabe
1 large bunch broccoli rabe
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3 large garlic cloves, smashed and cut into thin slices
1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes
1/3 cup chicken broth
Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, for grating
- Trim 2 inches off the bottom of the broccoli rabe stalks and discard.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add salt and broccoli rabe. Cook for 3 minutes, covered, then drain and run under cold water until cool to the touch. Taking small handfuls at a time, tightly squeeze the broccoli rabe to remove any excess water. Cut into 3-inch pieces and set aside.
- Meanwhile, in a large skillet, combine the olive oil, garlic, and pepper flakes over medium heat. When the garlic becomes fragrant, add the broccoli rabe and broth and cook until it is warmed through, about 2 minutes. Season with a generous pinch of salt. Serve with freshly grated Parmigiano on top.
- From our Northern Italian Classics class.
4 Japanese (slim lavender) eggplants, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
2 large zucchini, cut into 3/4-inch half moons
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for eggplant
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 garlic cloves, smashed and thinly sliced
1 large onion, chopped medium
2 orange or yellow bell peppers, cored and sliced into 3/4-inch squares
1/2 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
4 large ripe tomatoes, roughly chopped, juices reserved or 1 28-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes
1/3 cup kalamata olives, pitted and cut in quarters or 3 tablespoons capers, drained
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves, thinly sliced
- Preheat the oven to 400°. In a large bowl, toss the eggplant and zucchini with 3 tablespoons of olive oil and season generously with salt. Rub another tablespoon of olive oil on a baking sheet and arrange the eggplant and zucchini cubes in an even layer on the oiled sheet. Roast until golden brown, about 40 minutes. Set aside.
- In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, onion, peppers, and thyme and cook until the onions are translucent and the pepper softened, about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, olives or capers, and cook, partially covered, until the tomatoes break down and the mixture is thickened slightly, about 10 minutes. Remove from the heat and stir in the basil leaves until wilted.
- Stir in the roasted eggplant and zucchini and season to taste with more salt and pepper. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- From our Vegetarian Summer Dinners class
Braised Shrimp Puttanesca
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 small onion, coarsely chopped
3 garlic cloves, crushed and sliced
3 anchovy fillets
½ teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes, or to taste
1 twenty-eight ounce can whole peeled tomatoes, lightly crushed with your hands
½ cup red wine
3 tablespoons capers
1/3 cup chopped kalamata olives
1 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined
Kosher salt, as needed
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until soft and translucent, about 4 minutes. Add the anchovies and pepper flakes, and cook just until anchovies dissolve, about 3 minutes. Add the tomatoes and wine, and cook until the sauce is thickened, about 10 minutes. Nestle the shrimp into the sauce and sprinkle with the capers and olives. Bring the sauce back to a boil, reduce heat to medium-low, and simmer, covered, until the shrimp are cooked through, no more than 4 minutes. Season to taste with salt, if needed (the olives, capers, and anchovies are quite salty).
Gremolata is a bright, herbal sprinkle made from fresh parsley, garlic, and citrus zest. Traditionally used to top rich, long-cooked meats to cut their richness, it is also a terrific way to perk up any blanched or roasted vegetables. You can substitute some of the parsley for minced dill or cilantro to vary the flavor. Gremolata is best used on vegetables served at room temperature.
3 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
1 large clove garlic, very finely minced
Grated zest of 1 orange or lemon, plus juice
1 pound string beans, tough ends removed
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the parsley, garlic, and orange zest, and set aside.
- Add the string beans to the boiling water and blanch until bright green and just tender, about 3 minutes. Remove with tongs and run under cold water to stop the cooking and to set their color (skip this step if serving right away). Blot dry with paper towels, and arrange on a serving platter.
- Drizzle the string beans with the olive oil and then squeeze the citrus juice of 1/2 orange or lemon over the top. Sprinkle over the gremolata mixture and finish with a light dusting of coarse salt. Serve warm or at room temperature.
- Blanching is an excellent cooking method for making crisp-tender green vegetables, like asparagus, string beans, broccoli, broccoli rabe, and snap peas. Wish you knew how to properly cook ALL vegetables? Put our How to Cook Vegetables on your class wish list.