Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Celery Root (Celeriac) Rémoulade

Celery Root (Celeriac) Rémoulade in ramekin, overhead view on black

Kinda sorta like French coleslaw

Celery root (celeriac) is a type of celery grown specifically for its root. Even if you’ve never used it, you’ve seen it in the grocery store. It’s the brown, knobby veggie that (to the uninitiated) looks like a rock. But trust me, it’s edible—with a subtle, delectable flavor.

Celeriac is better known in Europe than in the US. When shredded and served raw—as it is in this dish—it has a crisp crunch. Combine it with tangy dressing, and you have a dish that resembles coleslaw. And one that happens to be one of the iconic dishes of French cuisine.

You can serve Celery Root Rémoulade as a starter, instead of a salad. Or as a side dish to accompany most fish, meat, or poultry dishes. It even goes great with hamburgers. Or as they say in French, les hamburgers.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Braised Celery with Tomato and Parmesan

Braised Celery with Tomato and Parmesan on plate, fork and napkin in background

A great side dish to accompany, well . . . anything

Never tasted Braised Celery? Well, you’re in for a treat. Because braising makes celery tender and sweet, revealing new depths of this often-overlooked veggie.

For this recipe, we cook celery in tomatoes (marinara sauce, actually), then finish it with a layer of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. We end up with a dish that’s almost a gratin, but not quite.

Braised Celery makes a perfect sidekick for grilled/roasted meat, fish, or poultry. Or anything, really. And its flavor is lip-smacking good. So this might be the perfect time to wear your “Kiss the Cook” apron.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Italian Celery and Mushroom Salad

Italian Celery and Mushroom Salad on plate, with fork and napkin in background

Pecorino Romano perks up this fresh and healthy delight

Looking for a dish with crisp, sunny flavor—one that can make you forget winter’s gloom? This classic Italian Celery and Mushroom Salad is just the thing.

Mushrooms and celery always play nicely together when dressed with olive oil and lemon juice. But mix in some Pecorino Romano cheese, and look out flavor explosion!

This salad takes just minutes to make. So it’s perfect for a weekday meal. But it’s also delectable enough for a weekend dinner party. Don’t you just love it when recipes are that accommodating?

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Celery, Corn, and Bacon Chowder

Celery, Corn, and Bacon Chowder in bowl, with spoon and napkin in background

Celery takes the lead role in this hearty dish

We all have celery in the fridge, right? Usually a wilted, half-used head buried deep in the vegetable bin. 

Most of us wouldn’t even think of using celery as a main ingredient. But I say it’s about time this shy veggie got some love.

Our Celery, Corn, and Bacon Chowder highlights the flavor of celery—in a warming comfort food. And with the cold, snowy weather we’ve been having in most of the US lately, I need all the warming comfort I can get.

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Turkey (or Chicken) Piccata

Turkey Piccata on plate with lemon and parsley garnish, overhead view on black

This simple, lemon-sauced dish screams “special occasion”

With Valentine’s Day around the corner, you may be looking for a festive main dish. Preferably one that’s impressive, but still easy to prepare. A piccata made with scaloppine is just the thing.

You could use veal scaloppine, of course. But turkey and chicken have plenty of flavor—and they cost a lot less. Plus, your supermarket’s meat case probably stocks pieces of turkey breast already sliced into “scaloppine” (making this dish even easier to prepare).

So if you’re still pondering your Valentine’s Day menu, fret no further. You rang—turkey piccata answered. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Boca Negra Cake

Boca Negra Cake with whipped cream and strawberry garnish

For serious chocolate lovers

Boca Negra is one of the richest cakes we know (the name translates as “black mouth”). Its chocolate flavor is intense and deep.

This dense, dark cake is perfect for special occasions. Like Valentine’s Day—a holiday that cries out for chocolate.

And once you make Boca Negra Cake, you’ll be looking for new events to celebrate. So you can make it again.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

The Pink Lady Cocktail

Pink Lady Cocktail with maraschino cherry garnish

Perfect for Valentine’s Day

Need a fun cocktail for Valentine’s Day? Something with festive color and bracing flavor, but not too heavy? The Pink Lady may have your number.

This drink originated decades ago. But it fell out of favor for many years, so you may not have heard of it. Though you probably have heard of Jayne Mansfield, who claimed it as a favorite (more on that later).

The Pink Lady Cocktail is retro, romantic, and a little silly. Just like Valentine’s Day. Try it—you’ll heart it.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Bacon Macaroni and Cheese

Bacon Macaroni and Cheese on plate, with serving dish in background

An old favorite gets even more savory

Need to warm up after a cold day—and chase away the winter blues? Well, mac ‘n cheese is your friend. Add some bacon, and this classic comfort food reaches a whole new level.

So mix up some Bacon Macaroni and Cheese, and let your soul escape from winter. At least for a little while.