Archive for September, 2012

From Dish Gwen:

My husband and I recently signed up for a Community Supported Fishery (CSF) program, meaning every week we get to pick up a little package of fresh-caught seafood. So far we’ve gotten Long Island Oysters and clams, fresh Atlantic cod, a whole fish (which we grilled) and some really nice filets of striped bass. This week we received a golden tilefish filet, and although it was my first time cooking tilefish it was instantly clear to me where it gets its name (check out that coloration!).

Aside from being beautiful, tilefish is delicious. It’s a flaky white fish with fatty skin that reminds me of cod or halibut. Ours was caught the day we ate it off of Montauk, in Long Island. Here’s how I cooked it:

Ingredients (serves 2-3)
– 1-2 lb tilefish filet (skin-on, scales-off)
– 2 tablespoons honey
– 2-3 large shallots, sliced into rings
– 2 tablespoons butter
– 2 cups white wine
– salt
– white pepper
– olive oil

Simmer some butter in a small sauce pan on medium heat and add your sliced shallots. While they’re browning, heat up a larger skillet on high and grease it lightly with olive oil. When it is good and hot, place your filets skin-side-down on the skillet and let them cook for a few minutes (you want that fatty skin to get nice and crispy so don’t move or flip the filets – leave them alone!). Toss the shallots so they brown all over and then add the white wine and butter, as well as a pinch of salt, and stir on low heat.

Once the flesh of the fish is white nearly all the way through, take a spatula and scrape the filets off the pan and flip them over.

Turn off the heat, and quickly drizzle a spoonful of honey on the crispy brown skin of the filets, then spread the honey evenly across the surface of each filet. Sprinkle the fish with a pinch of salt and white pepper, then serve the filets over a bed of rice, pasta, polenta or another grain of your choice. Spoon the shallots and wine/butter sauce over the fish and enjoy!

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Shrimp Scampi

From Dish Erin:

To me there’s nothing better than an easy, healthy, delicious weeknight meal. And minus the pot you need to cook the pasta, this is pretty close to a one-pot dish. I tend to have almost every ingredient I need for this dish on hand at all times, so I’ll usually just stop on my way home from work and grab the shrimp and it’s basically done in 30 min. This classic dish lends itself to personal interpretation. Shallots and tomato paste are not standard, but I really like them in this dish. Some people like scallions, too. I also think peas would be delicious. But then again, I put peas in everything, so maybe that’s just me.

(Hopefully you won’t need to scold your puppy halfway through the cooking process for trying to steal the butter.)

1/4 cup olive oil
1 lb peeled and deveined large shrimp
4 large garlic cloves, minced roughly
1 shallot, sliced very thinly
1/2 teaspoon dried hot red-pepper flakes
1/2 cup dry white wine
Salt & pepper to taste
3-4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 tablespoon tomato paste (optional)
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
5-10 cherry tomatoes, diced
3/4 lb capellini or linguine
1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Bring a 6- to 8-quart pot of salted water to a boil.

Meanwhile, heat oil in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté shrimp, turning over once, until just cooked through, (about 2-3 min depending on size). Then transfer with a slotted spoon to a large bowl.

Add garlic and shallot to oil remaining in skillet along with red pepper flakes, wine, salt, and pepper and cook over high heat, stirring occasionally, 1 minute. Add butter to skillet, stirring until melted, then add tomato paste, cherry tomatoes, lemon juice, and wine and simmer until alcohol burns off and everything is incorporated, about 5 min. Add shrimp back to pan. Remove skillet from heat.

Cook pasta in boiling water until just tender, about 8 minutes. Reserve 1 cup pasta-cooking water, then drain pasta in a colander. Toss pasta well with shrimp mixture and parsley in the sauté pan, adding a few tablespoons of the pasta water.

Top with extra parsley and parmesan cheese.

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From Dish Nicole:

We are in the home stretch of summer SLD’ers. Last weekend was Labor Day weekend and even though I do not get the summers off like my teacher friends, it still pretty much means the end of summertime activities. I have had a wonderful season of weekend getaways, weddings and beach excursions, but alas all good things must come to an end. The post Labor Day weather here in NYC has been rainy and humid which all you commuters know is not fun. I am beginning to long for cool, crisp fall weather. Today being rainy, again, I wanted to create a meal that wouldn’t send me out to the grocery store to get supplies. Luckily I have a stocked pantry and some leftover roast chicken breast in the fridge so I could easily create this light and spicy chicken, orzo and lime soup. I think that the summer citrus flavors combined with the warm soup base perfectly represent seasonal transition.

Here is what you will need:
¾ cup Orzo
6 cups of chicken broth
2 chicken breasts- cut into bite sized pieces (I used pre-cooked chicken but you can start with raw breasts)
6 cloves of garlic- thinly sliced
1 medium red onion- diced
2 jalapeno peppers- seeded and thinly sliced
The juice from 2 fresh limes
1 large tomato- seeded and chopped
½ cup chopped fresh cilantro
2 tablespoons olive oil
Salt and pepper
(Yields approximately 6 servings)

Start out by heating the olive oil in a large sauce pan over medium heat. Add the diced garlic, jalapenos and onion until the onions soften and start to brown.

If you are using raw chicken, add the diced chicken and cook until it’s cooked through. If using precooked chicken, add the diced chicken and sauté for about 1 minute and then add the chicken broth, lime juice, cilantro and tomato. Reduce the heat to simmer. This is a good time to take a taste test and season with salt and pepper. I for one like soup a little on the salty side but this soup doesn’t really need too much, thanks to the lime juice.

For the next step, you have a couple of options: If you plan on eating the soup right away and not having any leftover, you can add the orzo right into the broth and serve once the orzo is cooked completely. If not, I suggest cooking the orzo separately and add per serving. This prevents the orzo from getting too mushy and absorbing all of the broth while waiting in the fridge to be consumed once again. So once you have made your orzo cooking decision, your kitchen should be completely fragrant with limey, garlicky soup smells and anyone in close proximity will be salivating. So serve it up piping hot with some tortilla chips and you have yourself a crowd pleaser.

The next day at the office I found myself shopping online for new leather boots. I brought in the leftovers for my coworkers to sample and it passed the test with them as well. I think I am ready for the fall.
This recipe was adapted from Epicurious.

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From Dish Jodi:

It’s been hot here in LA. And though I love our hilltop house and big patio — a place to dip my feet regularly would sure be nice. It’s been a little bit of “Operation Find A Pool” and last weekend was no exception. Here’s a little technique I figured out.

1) Find a friend (or friend of a friend) with a pool.
2) Using sneaky undercover tactics, figure out that this person happens to love anything made with chocolate and coconut.
3) Make cookies (see below).
4) Send friend pictures of cookies, asking for a trade.
5) Realize friend is weak to idea of chocolate and coconut cookies and take advantage.
6) Dangle feet, float and splash away in friend’s pool while friend is distracted by cookies.


1 cup butter, room temp
1/2 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
1 3/4 cups flour
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp coarse salt
2 cups white-chocolate chips or chunks
1 3/4 cups sweetened flaked coconut
1 3/4 cups coarsely chopped walnuts

Preheat oven to 350 and line baking sheets with parchment paper. Cream butter and sugars in an electric mixer. Mix in vanilla and then eggs, one at a time.

Meanwhile, sift flour, cocoa, baking soda, baking powder and salt into another bowl. Mix slowly into butter mixture until combined. Fold in chocolate, coconut and walnuts until evenly distributed.

Put big scoops of dough on baking sheets leaving a couple inches between. Smush them down a little to shape. Bake 10-12 minutes or until set.

Let cook on the sheets for a couple of minutes, then transfer to racks to cool completely.

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From Dish Paige:

If you’ve been following Saucy Little Dish, then you might have figured out something I love to do is make at-home versions of food items one can easily purchase at the store. Sometimes the end result is way more awesome than I could ever expect (English muffins, peppermint patties, peanut butter cups). And sometimes, after laboring away for hours, covered in batter and flour from head to toe, the store-bought version reigns supreme (I’m looking at you Milano cookies). The other day, I stumbled on this recipe for homemade cheddar cheese crackers (a.k.a. Cheez-Its or Cheese Nips) and I just had to make them. The verdict: Super delicious, super flaky, and totally worth it!

8 oz. extra sharp cheddar cheese, grated
4 tablespoons butter or vegetable shortening (vegetable shortening will give you a flakier cracker, but some people find it gross)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons cold water
coarse salt

Combine shredded cheddar, butter or shortening and salt until well combined. Add in the flour and rub in with your hands until it resembles a coarse meal with some larger pea-sized pieces. Add the water and mix until combined. Knead just a little bit to form a cohesive ball. Cover in plastic and refrigerate at least 30 mins or over night.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.

Roll out the dough into a thin rectangle and cut into 1-inch squares. Place the squares on a sheet tray lined with parchment and sprayed with non-stick spray. With a skewer or toothpick, poke a hole in the center of each square. Sprinkle with coarse salt and bake 10-15 minutes until golden brown (mine took 13 minutes).

Eat as a snack, or float on top of tomato soup. Stores for a day or two in an air-tight container. Will not last more than an hour if you live in a house like mine.

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