May 052014
Compound Butter

Compound butter is, quite simply, a softened butter into which you have stirred/mashed/infused/incorporated other flavorings. It’s an old workhorse of French cuisine, and it’s incredibly easy to whip one up. Herbs of all stripes, aromatic vegetables such as onion, garlic, peppers, or shallots, soft cooked fruits, spices, flavorful roots such as horseradish or ginger, assorted salts, miso, hot sauce, citrus zest, and/or sweet flavorings such as honey, maple syrup, or pomegranate molasses, are all excellent candidates for inclusion in a compound butter. I like to do a peach-honey compound butter at the height of summer, to melt over cornbread and […]

Apr 152014
Eat More Greens: Reasonably Quick Saag Paneer

If there is a more flavorful way to eat greens than as Saag Paneer, I’m not sure what it is.  While it’s a must-have dish every time we go out for Indian food, I’ve also been whipping it up at home– with various degrees of success– for at least a decade. I’ve settled on the recipe below– it’s a good compromise for me between authenticity, flavor, ease of prep, and preservation of all those vitamins in the greens. (That’s why, though it’s more common to blanch the greens and discard their cooking water, along with all the vitamins in it, […]

Oct 212013
Sriracha Honey-Roasted Pumpkin Seeds

  I’ve read some rumblings of pumpkin fatigue on the web, this past week or so, but I’m nowhere near there yet myself. Whenever I roast a pumpkin, I try to do something interesting with the seeds. They make a great snack and it always seems a waste to throw them out. This afternoon, I wanted something sweet and spicy, and I knew a snack would be well-received in the indieculinary household.  So I cleaned the pumpkin goo off my seeds, rinsed them, and tossed them with olive oil, sriracha, honey, and crunchy Maldon sea salt. Then I stuck them […]

Sep 152013
Spicy Stacked Enchiladas Verdes with Roasted Pumpkin and Cheese

I’ve been making these enchiladas for years and years, but seeing the Food52 contest for “Your Best Spicy Recipe” was my impetus to finally write them up. They’re currently a potential finalist in that contest over there– wish me luck. My write-up from Food 52:  It was hard to know where to start with this contest, since I love spicy food and probably 80% of the entrees that come out of my kitchen would qualify for this contest. I settled on submitting a long-time favorite, though. I’m not sure when I decided to refine and combine elements of the ingredients and […]

May 272013
Cuban-Style Black Bean Tostadas with Crispy Kale, Cotija, Avocado, and Lime

Years ago, a friend came home from an educational trip to Cuba with a basic recipe for Cuban black beans. She made them for me once; I took note of the flavor profile, and they’ve been a staple in my kitchen ever since.  The method she brought back seasoned the beans with cumin, garlic, Cubanelle peppers, and of course, salt.  Cubanelles can be hard to find here in the States, but Anaheims are a decent substitute. I take some creative license and often incorporate– depending on the season– spicier peppers (usually jalapenos or serranos),  sauteed kale, mushrooms, or summer squash, […]