Cauliflower Parsnip Puree


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 pounds cauliflower (about 1 large head), trimmed, stems and florets cut into 1½-inch pieces
  • 8 ounces parsnips (about 2 medium), peeled and cut into large dice
  • 1 medium garlic clove, smashed
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, plus more as needed
  • White pepper
  • 1½ cups low-sodium chicken (or vegetable) stock


  1. Heat the oil in a large saucepan with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat until shimmering. Add the cauliflower, parsnips, garlic, measured salt, and pepper to taste and stir to coat with the oil.
  2. Add the stock and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low, cover, and simmer until the vegetables are knife tender, about 20 minutes.
  3. Transfer the mixture, including the liquid, to the bowl of a food processor fitted with a blade attachment. Process until smooth. Taste and season with additional salt and pepper as needed, then transfer to a serving bowl.

Adapted from Chow. Photo by Nick Saltmarsh via Flickr used with CC Attribution license

Galbi Marinade

Galbi is Korean barbecued beef short ribs. Marinate the meat overnight to allow the acid from the pear and sugar to tenderize the meat. The meat will be so tender you can put on a good char and cook it medium.

Serves 4, enough for 2 lbs meat, flanken short ribs are preferable.

  • 4 scallions, finely sliced
  • ½ onion, finely chopped
  • 1 asian pear, finely chopped
  • ¼ cup dark soy sauce
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 1 tbsp sake or mirin (rice wine)
  • 2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp sesame seeds
  • 1 tsp freshly grated ginger

Photo by Stacey Shintani via Flickr used with CC Attribution, Non Commercial, Share Alike license

Penne with Swordfish Mint and Pine Nuts

A pasta dish from Sicily that celebrates fresh fish and mint. Serves 4


  • 1 pound swordfish steak, about 1 inch thick
  • ¾ pound penne
  • ½ cup chopped fresh mint
  • ¼ cup plus ½ tablespoon olive oil
  • ¼ cup pine nuts
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¾ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper


  1. In a small frying pan, toast the pine nuts over moderately low heat, stirring frequently, until golden brown, about 5 minutes. Or toast them in a 350° oven for 5 to 10 minutes.
  2. In a large nonstick frying pan, heat the ½ tablespoon oil over moderate heat.
  3. Sprinkle the swordfish with ¼ teaspoon of the salt and the pepper. Add the fish to the pan and cook 4 minutes.
  4. Turn and cook until the fish is just done, 2 to 3 minutes longer. Remove.
  5. When the fish is cool enough to handle, cut it into 1-inch cubes.
  6. Wipe out the pan. Add the remaining ¼ cup oil to the pan and heat over moderately low heat.
  7. Add the garlic and cook, stirring, for 1 minute. Stir in ¼ cup of the mint and remove the pan from the heat.
  8. In a large pot of boiling, salted water, cook the penne until just done, about 13 minutes.
  9. Drain and toss with the swordfish, the garlic-and-mint oil, the pine nuts, the remaining ¼ cup mint, and ½ teaspoon salt.

Photo by  Max Straeten via morgueFile used with license

Watermelon Tequila Refeshers


  • 3½ pounds chopped seedless watermelon (about 12 cups) cut into 2 inch cubes
  • 1 cup tequila
  • 1 cup freshly squeezed lime juice (6–8 limes) plus lime slices for garnish
  • 4 cups ice
  • ¾ cup sugar


  1. Stir together sugar and ¾ cup water in a medium saucepan. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring until sugar is dissolved. Let cool completely. Refrigerate until ready to use, up to one week.
  2. Working in batches, purée watermelon in a blender until smooth. Past purée in batches through a fine sieve set over a large bowl, discarding solids as you work. Refrigerate juice until ready to use, up to 1 day.
  3. Stir together tequila, lime and watermelon juices with simple syrup in a large pitcher. Stir in ice and lime slices.

Photo by Feminist Julie via Flickr used with CC Attribution, Non Commercial, No Derivatives license

Broccoli-Cheese Soup

This recipe comes from America’s Test Kitchen. It’s a very delicious broccoli soup, the trick is overcooking the broccoli (right? I know!) but the color is brought back by adding fresh spinach.


  • 2 tbs. unsalted butter
  • 2 lbs. broccoli, florets roughly chopped into 1-inch pieces, stems trimmed, peeled, adn cute into 1/4-inch-thick slices.
  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped (about 1 cup)
  • 2 medium garlic cloves, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 2 tsp.)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. dry mustard powder
  • 3-4 cups of water
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
  • 2 oz. baby spinach (2 loosely packed cups)
  • 3/4 cup shredded sharp cheddar (white preferred)
  • 3/4 cup grated fine Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • pinch of cayenne
  • Salt and pepper


  1. Heat butter in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When foaming subsides, add broccoli, onion, garlic, dry mustard, cayenne, and 1 tsp. salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until fragrant, about 6 minutes. Add 1 cup of water and baking soda. bring to simmer, cover, and cook until broccoli is very soft, about 20 minutes, stirring once during cooking.
  2. Add broth and 2 cups of water and increase heat to medium-high. When mixture begins to simmers, stir in spinach and cook until wilted, about 1 minute. Transfer half of soup to blender, add cheddar and Parmesan, and process until smooth, about 1 minute. Transfer soup to medium bowl and repeat with remaining soup. Return soup to Dutch oven, place over medium heat and bring to simmer. Adjust consistency of soup with up to 1 cup of water. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve, passing extra Parmesan separately.

Photo by Cookthinker via Flickr used with CC Attribution, Non Commercial, Share Alike license

Bread, Potato and Arugula Soup (Zuppa di Patate, Rucola, e Pane)

The ideal arugula to use for this soup is the tougher, wilder kind; the fragile hydroponic type is too delicate for this dish. Serves: 8


  • ¾ pound medium-size potatoes (about 2 potatoes), peeled and cut into ½-inch-thick slices
  • 1 pound arugula (2 to 3 large bunches), preferably not hydroponic or “baby”
  • ½ cup dices (½-inch) day-old Italian bread with crusts removed
  • ¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 cloves of garlic, crushed
  • ½ cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1 whole peperoncino (dried hot red pepper) or ½ teaspoon peperoncino (crushed red pepper)
  • 7 cups water
  • Salt


  1. In a deep, heavy 4- to 5-quart pot, combine the potatoes and water. Salt the water lightly and bring to a boil. Adjust the level of heat to medium-high and cook the potatoes, covered until they are tender but still hold their shape, about 18 minutes.
  2. Meanwhile, cut off the thick stems from the arugula and wash the leaves in cool water to remove all sand and grit, changing the water if necessary. Drain the arugula well and cut into 2-inch lengths.
  3. Stir the arugula and bread into the pot and let boil for another 10 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, in a small skillet, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the garlic and peperoncino and cook, stirring, until the garlic is golden, about 3 minutes.
  5. Scrape the contents of the skillet into the soup pot and stir well. If using a dried whole pepper, remove it. Season the soup to taste wand serve in warm bowls, sprinkled with grated cheese and drizzled with more extra virgin olive oil.

Photo by Sharon K via Flickr used with CC Attribution, Non Commercial, Share Alike license

Barley Tofu Salad


  • 1 package of extra firm tofu (12 oz)
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 4 tablespoons soy sauce
  • fresh ginger
  • Dark sesame oil
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 1 cup uncooked barley
  • 1 lb. green beans cut into 2 inch pieces
  • 1½ lbs. of large shiitake mushrooms
  • 2 bunches of scallions
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons of honey


  1. Drain tofu and place in a dish towel and a heavy skillet or book on it to drain water for about 45 minutes. Then, cut into 1 inch cubes and pour marinade over it and let stand for 25 minutes.
  2. Prepare marinade for tofu with brown sugar, 2 tablespoons of soy sauce, 1 teaspoon of fresh minced ginger, 1 teaspoon dark sesame oil and garlic clove minced.
  3. Preheat oven to 375˚. Once tofu has marinated, bake for about 30 minutes, turning after 15 minutes. Cool and set aside.
  4. To prepare barley: heat one teaspoon of sesame oil in a heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Add barley and toast for about 3 minutes stirring frequently. Add 5 cups of water and ½ teaspoon of salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for about 45 minutes or until barley is tender. Drain, cool and set in a large bowl.
  5. Cook green beans for about 3 minutes or until crisp-tender, drain and run under cold water. Add to bowl with barley.
  6. Slice mushrooms thinly and cook on a pan with sesame oil. Add to bowl with barley. Slice scallions thinly. Add to barley and green beans.
  7. Combine 1 tablespoon of sesame oil, rice wine vinegar, honey, 2 teaspoons of minced ginger, 1 minced garlic in a small bowl stirring with a whisk. Drizzle mixture over barley and other ingredients. Serve warm or chilled.

Neiman-Marcus Cookies

Makes 55 cookies


  • 1 cup butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2 cup flour
  • 2 1/2 cups ground oatmeal
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 cup chopped nuts
  • 12 oz chocolate chips
  • 8 oz grated chocolate bar


  1. Preheat oven to 375°
  2. Cream butter and sugars
  3. Add eggs and vanilla
  4. Mix together all remaining dry ingredients except chocolate & nuts
  5. Add dry mixture to eggs and sugar
  6. Mix in chips, nuts & grated chocolate
  7. Roll into balls and place 2″ apart on cookie sheet
  8. Bake for 10 min at 375°

Photo by Love from the Oven via Flickr used with CC Attribution, Non Commercial, No Derivatives license


Roasted Chestnuts


  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
  2. Using a pairing knife, cut two slits along the edge of the nut.
  3. Place in a pot filled with cold water and bring to a boil. Turn off the heat, cover and let them stand for 20 minutes.
  4. Drain and place in a roasting pan in the oven for 30 minutes.
  5. Remove from the oven and let cool to the touch before peeling (they are easier to peel when they are still warm).

Photo by Amelia Crook via Flickr used with CC Attribution license