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Perfect Sushi Rice

Yield: 4 cups


  • 2 cups sushi rice
  • 2 cups water
  • 4 tablespoons rice vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 tablespoons mirin


Do not follow the directions on the bag of rice! Rinse the rice only 3–4 times—the water does NOT have to run clear as it will instruct on the bag. Allow rice to drain thoroughly—45 minutes in winter, 30 minutes in the summer. (Trust me here.)

While rice is draining, combine vinegar, sugar, salt and mirin in a bowl and mix well. Set aside.

Add the rice and water to a pan and bring quickly to a boil over high heat. Once it reaches a boil, reduce to a simmer. Cover the pot and cook for 15 minutes before removing the pot from the heat, keeping the lid CLOSED. Absolutely no stirring or sneaking a peek!

Let rice rest for 10 minutes, then remove the cover.

Spread the rice in a wide glass or ceramic dish to cool and lightly fan the rice while adding the vinegar mixture. Mix rice gently, being careful not to break or mash it.

Cook’s note: If you have a rice cooker, follow the directions for “sushi rice” and … Read More

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Grilled Green Garlic

These can be chopped and added to tacos or green salads, folded into mashed potatoes or used as toppings for pizza.


  • 6 green garlic bulbs
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Trim the top inch or so of the green garlic bulbs and remove the outermost layer and discard. Place the trimmed green garlic in a baking dish and drizzle with the olive oil. Season with salt and pepper, turning several times to coat the garlic.

Preheat a gas grill or prepare a wood or charcoal fire. Rub the grill grate with olive oil. When the fire is very hot, place the garlic crosswise over the grate and cook until lightly charred—30 seconds to 1 minute. Then turn over and cook for another 30 seconds. Remove from the fire and chop, slice or use otherwise as you desire.

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Fuyu Persimmon and Sultana Raisin Mostarda

There are three very different types of mostarda found in Italy: mostarda di Venezia, mostarda tout-court and, probably the best known, mostarda di Cremona (on which this recipe is loosely based). This dish is a great accompaniment for roast pork, but one of the most memorable dishes I had on a trip to Florence was a perfectly poached breast of chicken, served room temperature, with mostarda and freshly made mayonnaise. The impossibly soft chicken, the bright sweet and sour flavors of the fruits and the richness of the mayonnaise worked together in a way I will never forget!

Yield: 3 or 4 servings as a side dish


  • 1 cup Fuyu persimmon, peeled, seeded and diced
  • ½ cup Sultana raisins (coarsely chopped if large)
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • ¼ cup Champagne vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon whole brown mustard seeds
  • 1teaspoon whole yellow mustard seeds
  • 2 sprigs of fresh thyme
  • 1 small bay leaf


Toast the mustard seeds in a dry pan until their aroma is released, then set aside. Cover the raisins with boiling water and allow to sit for about 5 minutes, then drain and set aside.

In a sauté pan, add enough water to coat the … Read More

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Asparagus Fonduta

  • 20 to 25 spears asparagus
  • 3 T unsalted butter
  • 3/4 C whole milk (or half whole milk and half 1/2 and 1/2)
  • 3 large egg yolks, lightly beaten
  • 1 t flour (optional)
  • 8 ounces Fontina cheese, cut into 1/4-inch cubes

Bend the thick end of each asparagus spear until it snaps and discard the fibrous end piece. Steam the asparagus spears in a vegetable steamer until they are just tender and offer only a little resistance when pierced with the tines of a fork. Remove to a warm platter and keep warm.

Place the butter in the top of a double boiler. Make sure the water in the bottom does not touch the top pan. Bring the water in the double boiler to a boil over medium high heat. While the butter is melting, beat together the milk, eggs, optional flour, and add the cheese. Slowly whisk the egg and milk mixture into the pan with the butter, continuing to whisk until it has thickened and a sauce has formed, about 10 minutes.

To serve, drizzle the sauce over the asparagus.

Serves 4

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Braised Baby Artichokes

We make and use these braised chokes all spring and summer – on sandwiches, in salads and vegetable sautées, and, puréed, in pasta fillings. It sounds complex, but great results are really easy, once you get the hang of it. You can prepare and braise larger artichokes in the same way, but you’ll need to scoop the choke out of the center before or after cooking, as it will be too fibrous to eat.

Makes 12


12 baby artichokes

1 lemon

2 T extra virgin olive oil, more as needed

1 large shallot, sliced into 1/4-inch rings

4 cloves garlic, sliced into 1/8-inch coins

3 sprigs fresh thyme

1 bay leaf

2 C dry white wine

2 T salt

Water, as needed to cover

1 sheet parchment paper

To Prepare

Fill a bowl with 1quart cold water and the juice of the lemon. Working with one artichoke at a time, snap off the outer leaves in a concentric circle until you expose the yellow/green inner leaves (about 1 1/2 inches in diameter). Dip the artichoke in lemon water to prevent browning. Use a sharp paring knife to trim away the dark green outer skin from the bottom and stem … Read More

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Broccolini with Pecan Brown Butter

Recipe courtesy of Bruce Aidells

  • 4 bunches broccolini (about 2 ½ pounds), washed
  • 6 tablespoons butter
  • 2 tablespoons minced shallot
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup toasted pecans (see note)
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice, or to taste
  • kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Bring 6-8 quarts of salted water to a boil.Add broccolini and stir to separate each stem.When water returns to a boil, adjust heat to a light boil and cook for 4-5 minutes.Taste a stem piece. The broccolini is done when crisp tender.Drain and set aside and keep warm.

Melt butter in a medium skillet over medium heat.Add shallot and garlic and stir for 2 to 3 minutes until the vegetables have softened.Add pecans and a pinch of salt and freshly ground black pepper.Increase heat to medium high and stir continuously until the butter has browned and pecans develop a toasted aroma.Remove from heat and stir in lemon juice.Toss mixture with broccolini and season to taste with salt and pepper.Serve at once.

Note:To toast pecans, spread on a small baking sheet and bake in the middle of a 350ºF oven until nicely golden brown with a nutty aroma, about 5 to 10 minutes.Transfer to a … Read More

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