Memorable Quotes:

"A Bearnaise sauce is simply an egg yolk, a shallot, a little tarragon vinegar and butter, but it takes years of practice for the result to be perfect." Fernand Point

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Fettuccine Alla Carbonara

Fettuccine Alla Carbonara
(From Borgatti's Ravioli & Egg Noodles)

1 pound of fettuccine
8 strips of bacon
6 ounces thickly sliced prosciutto
6 ounces unsalted butter
2 tablespoons minced onion
1/3 cup white wine
1/2 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup milk
1 tablespoon minced parsley
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1 egg yolk
Freshly ground black pepper to taste

Set a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta

In a large saute pan oveer medium-high heat, fry the bacon until crisp. Drain the bacon slices thoroughly. Cut the prosciutto and bacon into 1/2-inch squares. In a medium saucepan over low heat, melt the butter. Add the minced onion and saute over low heat until translucent, about 5 minutes. Add the bacon and the prosciutto to the saucepan. Stir over low heat for 3 to 4 minutes. Pour the wine into the saucepan and raise the heat to medium. Stirring, bring the mixture to a low boil and cook for 5 minutes. Add the cream and milk and then bring to a low boil again, cook for 5 minutes. Meanwhile, boil the pasta to al dente (just cooked through), then drain. Reduce the heat under the saucepan to low, add the parsley and approximately half of the grated cheese. Pour this mixture over the pasta. Add the egg yolk and toss the pasta and sauce together thoroughly. Add the remaining grated cheese and freshly ground pepper to individual portions. Serve immediately.

Bolognese-Style Meat Sauce

Bolognese-Style Meat Sauce
From Borgatii’s Ravioli and Egg Noodles

1/3 cup olive oil
2 ounces diced salt pork
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
½ cup chopped onion
1 cup chopped carrot
1 cup chopped celery
1 pound ground lean beef
½ cup white wine
½ cup light cream
1 tablespoon tomato paste
2 cups beef broth (or one 28-ounce can peeled, crushed tomatoes may be substituted
1 cup peas
2 ounces butter
Salt and pepper to taste
½ teaspoon ground nutmeg

In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the oil and sauté the diced salt port until the pork is lightly brown, about 5 minutes. Remove the salt pork with a slotted spoon and set aside. Add the garlic to the oil and sauté until golden brown, about 3 minutes. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 5 to 7 minutes. Add the carrot and celery and cook until they soften and begin to change color, about 6 to 7 minutes. Add the ground beef and cook until browned, about 8 to 10 minutes. Pour in the wine, raise the heat to high, and bring to a simmer while stirring. Pour in the cream and bring to a boil for 3 minutes. In a medium bowl, dilute the tomato paste in the beef broth and add to the saucepan. Add the peas to the saucepan cover and allow to simmer for 45 minutes. Add the butter, salt, pepper, and nutmeg. Stir well and simmer 15 minutes more. Serve over spaghetti or another long pasta.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Bobby Flay's Country Captain Chicken

Recipe courtesy Bobby Flay
Prep Time: 40 min
Inactive Prep Time: 10 min
Cook Time: 1 hr 15 min
Level: Intermediate
Serves: 4 servings

Mesa Curry Mix:
  • 3 tablespoons ancho chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons ground cumin
  • 2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 2 teaspoons ground fennel
  • 2 teaspoons ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 teaspoon ground chili de arbol
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
Coconut Rice with Green Onions:
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup finely diced Spanish onion
  • 2 cups long-grain rice
  • 1 (13-14 ounce) can unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced
Country Captain Chicken:
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 6 slices bacon, diced
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 bone-in chicken thighs, skin removed
  • 1 medium Spanish onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 large bell pepper, halved, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 serrano chile, finely diced
  • 2 heaping teaspoons Mesa curry mix, recipe above
  • 1 cup dry white wine
  • 2 cups homemade chicken stock
  • 1 (28-ounce) can plum tomatoes, drained well and coarsely chopped
  • Scant 1/4 cup currants or raisins
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • Honey
  • 1/3 cup coarsely chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish
  • Slivered almonds, lightly toasted and chopped
  • Coconut Rice with Green Onions, recipe above
For the  Mesa curry mix:
  • Combine all the spices in a small bowl.
For the coconut rice with green onions:
Melt the butter in a medium saucepan over high heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 2 minutes. Add the rice and stir to coat the grains in the butter. Add the coconut milk, water, salt and pepper and bring to a boil, stir once, cover the pot, reduce the heat to medium-low and cook until tender, about 16 minutes.
Remove from the heat and let the rice sit, covered for 5 minutes. Remove the lid, fluff with a fork and fold in the green onion. Let sit 5 minutes before serving. 
For the country captain chicken:
Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F.
Heat the oil in a large, high sided saute pan over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook until golden brown and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon to a plate lined with paper towels. Add the butter and 1 tablespoon of canola to the rendered bacon fat in the pan and heat until it begins to shimmer.
Put the flour in a shallow bowl and season liberally with salt and pepper. Season the chicken on both sides with salt and pepper, dredge in the flour and tap off any excess. Sear the chicken on both sides until golden brown. Remove to plate.
Add the onion and bell pepper to the pan, season with salt and pepper and cook until soft, about 5 minutes. Add the garlic and the serrano and cook for 1 minute. Stir in the curry powder and cook for 1 minute. Add the wine and cook until reduced by 3/4. Add the chicken stock, bring to a simmer and reduce slightly. Stir in the tomatoes, currants or raisins, thyme, 2 teaspoons of honey and season with a little salt and pepper and bring to a simmer. Nestle the chicken thighs into the pan, cover with a tight fitting lid and bake in the oven for 35 minutes. Remove the lid after 35 minutes and continue to bake an additional 15 minutes.
Remove the chicken to a platter and tent slightly to keep warm. Put the pan and sauce back on the burner over high heat and bring to a boil. Let the sauce reduce slightly, then season with salt, pepper, and honey, to taste. Stir in the parsley. Spoon the sauce over the chicken and top with the bacon, almonds and more parsley. Serve with Coconut Rice with Green Onions.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Ginger Almonds

Recipe courtesy Alton Brown, 2009

Prep Time:
10 min
Inactive Prep Time:
30 min
Cook Time:
27 min
1 pound or approximately 4 cups


  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil
  • 1 dried arbol chile, stemmed and broken into small pieces
  • 1 pound whole natural almonds
  • 1 tablespoon less-sodium soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce


Heat the oven to 250 degrees F.
Combine the ginger and salt in a large mixing bowl and set aside.
Heat the olive oil and sesame oil in a 12-inch saute pan over medium-low heat. Add the arbol chile and cook, stirring frequently, until the chile begins to give off an aroma, 30 to 45 seconds. Add the almonds and cook, stirring frequently until lightly toasted, approximately 5 minutes. Add the soy sauce and Worcestershire sauce and cook until reduced slightly and the pan looks dry, approximately 1 minute. Immediately remove the nuts to the large bowl and toss with the ginger mixture.
Spread the coated nuts into a single layer on a half sheet pan lined with parchment paper and bake in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove the pan to a cooling rack for at least 30 minutes or until completely cool. Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Spicy Stir-Fried Green Beans and Scallions

Serves 4 as a side dish.   Published January 1, 1999. 

Try serving a double portion of these beans with rice as an entree.

2 tablespoons soy sauce , preferably light
1 tablespoon white wine vinegar or rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons peanut oil or canola oil
1 teaspoon peanut oil or canola oil
3/4 pound green beans , stemmed and cut on bias into 1 1/2-inch pieces
4 scallions , white and bottom portion of green parts, cut into 2-inch pieces
3 medium cloves garlic , minced (about 1 tablespoon)


  1. 1. Mix soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, hot red pepper flakes, and 1 tablespoon water in small bowl; set aside.
  2. 2. Heat 12-inch heavy-bottomed skillet over high heat until extremely hot, at least 4 minutes. Carefully swirl 2 tablespoons oil in pan until bottom is evenly coated (oil will begin to shimmer and smoke almost immediately). Fry green beans, flipping with wide spatula every 30 seconds, until slightly charred and crisp-tender, about 4 minutes. Add scallions; continue cooking in same manner until scallions are charred and beans are tender, 3 to 4 minutes longer.
  3. 3. Make a well in center of pan; mash garlic and remaining 1 teaspoon oil in pan with back of spatula. Fry until fragrant, about 5 seconds, and stir into vegetables. Add soy mixture and toss into vegetables to coat; cook until liquid is reduced by about half, about 15 seconds. Serve immediately.

Monday, March 1, 2010

French Laundry Staff Dressing

1 Tablespoon chopped garlic
1 1/2 teaspoons of chopped shallots
2 Tablespoons + 1 teaspoon of Dijon mustard
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
1 large egg yolk
2 cups canola oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper

Place the garlic, shallot, mustard and vinegar in a blender and blend until well combined. Add the egg yolk and blend again. With the blender running, slowly drizzle in the oil until the dressing is thick and emulsified. Season to taste with salt and pepper.