Cauliflower Roasted with Chile, Meyer Lemon, Currants and Pine Nuts


1 1/2 to 2 lb. (750 g to 1 kg) cauliflower (1 large head)
3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
1 Tbs. minced Calabrian chiles in oil or hot Calabrian chile spread
1 small Meyer lemon, quartered and cut crosswise into thin wedges
Fine sea salt
1 1/2 Tbs. currants
2 Tbs. pine nuts, lightly toasted


1. Preheat an oven to 450°F (230°C).

2. Separate the cauliflower into florets and cut the tender stem into bite-sized pieces, discarding any tough parts.

3. In a bowl, combine the cauliflower, olive oil, chile spread, lemon and 1/2 tsp. salt and toss to coat. Spread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and roast for 10 minutes. Toss and roast until the cauliflower is tender and browned in spots, 5 to 10 minutes longer. Remove from the oven, sprinkle the currants on top, and toss gently to combine. Serves 4 to 6.

4. Transfer the cauliflower to a serving platter and sprinkle the pine nuts on top. Serve hot or warm.


Halloumi, Fig and Rucola Salad

Baby Arugula and Herb Salad with Dried Figs and Halloumi


1/4 lb. (125 g) halloumi cheese, sliced crosswise into pieces 1/3 inch (9-mm) thick
2 Tbs. olive oil, plus more for brushing
2 Tbs. fresh lemon juice
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
6 cups (6 oz./185 g) loosely packed arugula
1/4 cup (1/4 oz./7 g) coarsely chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup (1/4 oz./7 g) fresh flat-leaf parsley
8 dried figs, coarsely chopped


1. Prepare a medium-hot fire in a grill.

2. Brush the cheese with olive oil. Arrange the cheese on the grate directly over the heat. Grill, turning once, until nicely grill-marked, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Set aside.

3. In a large bowl, whisk together the lemon juice and the 2 Tbs. olive oil. Season well with salt and pepper. Add the arugula, basil and parsley to the bowl and toss to coat completely. Transfer the greens to a shallow serving platter and garnish with the figs and cheese. Serve immediately. Serves 4.

Saucy Skillet Salmon

Saucy Skillet Salmon

Serves 4

2 pints cherry tomatoes (about 20 ounces or 4 cups total)
2 cloves garlic, smashed
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
Freshly ground black pepper
4 (6-ounce) skin-on salmon fillets
Cooked couscous, for serving

Place the tomatoes, garlic, 1 tablespoon of the oil, vinegar, thyme, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and a few grinds of black pepper in a blender or food processor fitted with the blade attachment. Pulse a few times until blended and saucy but still a little chunky; set aside.

Use a paper towel or clean dish towel to pat each salmon fillet dry on both sides (to prevent them from sticking to the pan). Season on both sides with salt and pepper.

Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons of oil in a large skillet with a lid over medium-high heat until shimmering. Place the salmon skin-side down in the skillet, then press down on them so that the skin is in even contact with the pan and browns evenly. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook without moving, gently pressing down on fish every so often, until the sides are cooked halfway up the fillets, 6 to 9 minutes, depending on the thickness of your fillets. Transfer the salmon skin-side up to a plate.

Pour the tomato mixture into the skillet and bring it to a simmer. Return the salmon skin-side up to the pan, nestling them in the sauce. Cover and continue to simmer for 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness of your fillets. An instant-read thermometer into the middle of the thickest fillet should read 120°F for medium-rare or 130°F if you prefer it more well-done. Serve the salmon, skin-side up, with plenty of its sauce, over cooked couscous.

Spinach Pesto Polenta with Chickpeas

Spinach Pesto Polenta with Smoky Chickpeas
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time: 25 mins
Total time: 40 mins
Serves: 3 to 4 servings


1 cup dry polenta
4 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup spinach
1/4 cup basil
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon pine nuts
Pinch Salt
Pinch Black Pepper

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 1/2 cups chickpeas, drained and rinsed if using canned
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon chili powder
1/4 teaspoon sea salt


Bring water to a boil, add polenta and salt. Lower heat and continue to stir polenta as it thickens. On the lowest heat possible, continue to stir occasionally and let polenta cook for about 20 minutes (longer if you want the flavor to develop more).
While the polenta cooks, combine the ingredients for the pesto in a blender or food processor, running until everything is well combined. Set aside.
To make chickpeas, heat olive oil over medium-low heat. Add the chickpeas, paprika, chili powder, and sea salt. Cook until chickpeas are hot, 5 to 6 minutes.
To serve, fold in 3 to 4 tablespoons of the pesto into the polenta, top with cooked chickpeas, and serve any extra pesto on the side.

Eggs Benedict with Manchego, Tomatoes, Prosciutto & A Sage Hollandaise Sauce

manchego eggs benedict

Sage Hollandaise Sauce
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon water
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon dry rubbed sage
1 cup unsalted cultured butter, cut into individual tablespoons
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice
Eggs Benedict with Manchego, Tomatoes, & Proscuitto
4 eggs
splash of white vinegar
4 slices proscuitto
2 ounces manchego cheese, cut into 4 slices
4 tomato slices
4 fresh sage leaves

For the sage hollandaise sauce, whisk the eggs yolks with the water and salt in a small pot for 1 minute. Place the pot over low heat and whisk constantly for 2 minutes. Add the butter, 1 tablespoon at a time, allowing each tablespoon to melt before adding the next, whisking constantly. Once you have only 4 tablespoons of butter left, add a splash of the lemon juice and alternate between adding the lemon juice and butter until all is added and smooth, whisking constantly. Once the sauce has thickened, remove it from heat and continue whisking for 2 minutes. Cover and set it aside.

For the eggs benedict, arrange the cheese, proscuitto, and tomato on each of the English muffins. Set aside. Bring a small pot of water to a boil with a splash of vinegar. Crack open an egg into a small bowl, and use the bowl to drop the egg into the boiling water. Use a spoon to help hold the yolk in the center of the egg white area. Once the egg whites have cooked but the yolk is still wobbly, remove the poached egg with two spoons (the extra support on both sides will help keep the yolk from splitting open) and transfer to one of the english muffins. Repeat with the 3 remaining eggs, then top each one with a generous scoop of the sage hollandaise and serve.

Flat Bread with Dried Figs, Roquefort Cheese, and Rosemary


Makes 2 large flat breads

For the bread dough
3 cups (375 grams) all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
2 cups (280 grams) bread flour or fine semolina
2 1/2 cups (300 grams) whole-wheat flour
1 envelope (2 1/4 teaspoons/7 grams) instant active-dry yeast
2 teaspoons coarse sea salt or kosher salt
2 teaspoons ground coriander seeds
1/4 teaspoon ground mastic
1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Olive oil

For the topping
About 1/2 cup (120 milliliter) milk
About 30 dried figs, sliced
2 cups (270 grams) crumbled Roquefort, gorgonzola, or any spicy blue cheese
1/4 cup (15 grams) chopped fresh rosemary leaves

Make the bread dough: In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the dough hook or in a food processor, mix the flours, yeast, salt, and spices.

With the motor running, add 3 cups (720 milliliters) water or more to make a soft dough. Work the dough for about 6 minutes, until it is soft and slightly sticky, adding more water if needed.

Oil a large bowl and a piece of plastic wrap. With floured hands, shape the dough into a ball and transfer to the oiled bowl. Cover with the oiled plastic wrap, place in the refrigerator, and let rise overnight. Let the dough come to room temperature (about 2 hours) before proceeding further.

Preheat the over to 375°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper.

Shape the laganes: Lightly flour your work surface. Turn the dough out and knead briefly. Divide in two, cover one piece, and flatten the other to fill the first baking sheet. Stretch and dimple with wet fingers to expand the dough to cover the whole pan. Cover with oiled plastic while you shape and place the next lagana on the second baking sheet. Cover and let the dough rise for about 40 minutes.

To top the breads: Brush the breads with milk and divide the fig slices between them, pressing the figs to stick onto the surface of the breads. Sprinkle generously with the cheese and rosemary.

Bake for about 30 minutes, or until the breads are golden at teh bottom. If they brown on top but still look uncooked at the bottom, cover loosely with aluminum foil and bake a bit longer.

Let cool on a rack, slice, and serve warm or at room temperature. Leftover bread can be frozen. Reheat directly from the freezer, loosely wrapped in aluminum foil, in a 375°F oven for about 20 minutes. Open the foil and heat for 8 to 10 minutes more to caramelize the top.

Red Lentil Soup


Red Lentil Soup

Serves 4

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 large carrot, diced
2 large ribs celery, diced
1 small yellow onion, diced
1/4 teaspoon salt, plus additional to taste
1 cup red lentils
4 cups water or low-sodium broth
1 whole bay leaf
2 tablespoons lemon juice from 1/2 large lemon
Olive oil, yogurt, or other topping, to serve

In a medium (2- to 3-quart) saucepan or Dutch oven, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the carrot, celery, onion, and 1/4 teaspoon salt, stir to combine, then cover and let the vegetables sweat until the onions are soft and translucent, about 5 minutes.

Add the lentils, water or broth, and bay leaf. Bring up to a boil, then turn the heat down to low and let simmer, covered, until the lentils begin to fall apart, about 20 minutes.

Turn off the heat, stir in the lemon juice, and add salt to taste. Ladle into bowls and serve. Leftovers will keep refrigerated for 5 days.

Chicken Cacciatore

chicken cacciatore

Makes 4 servings

  • Olive oil to lightly coat the bottom of a large skillet with a lid
  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour seasoned with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 slices bacon, chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, cored, and sliced
  • 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 4 ounces white or brown button mushrooms, sliced
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground fennel seed
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • One 14- to 15-ounce can whole plum tomatoes
  • 8 ounces tomato sauce
  • 8 ounces chicken broth
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh basil leaves
  • 1/4 cup torn fresh oregano leaves
  • Grated parmesan for serving
  • Cooked pasta or soft polenta for serving
  1. Coat the skillet with olive oil, up the sides of the pan about 1/4 inch, and heat. Dredge the chicken thighs in the seasoned flour and brown each side until golden. Remove the thighs and set aside.
  2. Drain the oil from the skillet and add the chopped bacon. Cook until almost crisp and then add the 2 peppers, onions, garlic, and mushrooms. Sauté for a few minutes.
  3. Stir in the dried basil, dried oregano, ground fennel, red pepper flakes, and salt. Continue to sauté until you can smell the garlic, another few minutes.
  4. Crush the plum tomatoes with your clean hands to break them up and add to the skillet along with the juices from the can. Add the tomato sauce and chicken broth.
  5. Return the chicken thighs to the skillet, skin side up, and bathe the sauce over the pieces. Bring everything up to a simmer and continue to simmer, partially covered, for 30 to 40 minutes.
  6. After the 30 to 40 minute simmer, stir in the fresh basil and oregano. Serve a chicken thigh and some of the sauce with peppers over spaghetti or some soft polenta. Shower a little Parmesan over the top and enjoy!