Chicken Burritos with Salsa Verde

I’ve had Mexican flavors on my mind lately, and with Cinco de Mayo approaching, it only seemed appropriate to make a distinctly Mexican-inspired burrito. These burritos include shredded chicken, freshly made salsa verde, a mild, Spanish goat cheese, and roasted poblano peppers, which all together, amounted to a new must-make-this-again-soon recipe.

I’d heard of tomatillos before, but had never actually tasted or seen one hands on. When I ran into them, I couldn’t help but just grab a ton of them without a clue as to what I would do with them. If you’ve also never worked with a tomatillo, they look kind of like small, green tomatoes with a papery wrapping (like a head of garlic). After a little thought, the most obvious thing struck me (another new thing for my tastebuds): salsa verde!

Now tomatillos are not tomatoes and salsa verde is a salsa that has no tomatoes (tomatillos are the star of the show), and in… click to read more…

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Braised Lamb Shank with Sherry Blackberry Sauce

After having enjoyed a rack of lamb and remembering how much I love lamb, I needed more. This time, I opted for a different cut of meat, one of my favorites: the shank! I wanted to continue experimenting with “darker” sauces paired with lamb, so today, I have a Braised Lamb Shank with Sherry Blackberry Sauce.

Braised Lamb Shank with Sherry Blackberry Sauce

This was a very hearty meal. Given the beautiful, spring-time weather, it almost seemed a bit too heavy, but this is also when you get the best lamb, so I got over this dilemma pretty quickly. The meat was fall apart tender, rich in flavor, and infused with the dark flavors of the sauce. The sauce, at a high level, was a reduction of the braising liquid, but there was more to it in addition to the full, hearty flavors imparted by the lamb. The other major players:… click to read more…

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Herbed Rack of Lamb with Port Fig Sauce

Lamb is a wonderful meat that lends itself to many beautiful dishes, but a common theme across all of them is to keep it simple so that the delicious, gamey flavor of lamb can shine through. With the spring season comes the new lamb season, and so I have prepared a number of lamb dishes. Today’s dinner: an herbed rack of lamb with a sauce composed of a port reduction and dried figs.

Herbed Rack of Lamb with Port Fig Sauce

This was simply delicious. The ideal way to eat lamb is medium rare so that it is juicy, tender, and just bursting with a distinct flavor. One of my favorite preparations of rack of lamb is herb encrusted, but one thing that never quite sat right with me was the bread-crumby texture of the herb crust–it always bothered me, because when you go to eat it or cut the rack, so much of it crumbles off and is lost! So I tried to apply some of… click to read more…

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Caneton a`l’Orange (Roast Duck with Orange Sauce)

Poultry is always a crowd pleaser, but let’s face it, some times, chicken can get a little old. Every now and then, it pays to indulge in a more delectable bird, in this case duck. Duck has an amazing flavor and depending on where you live in the world, many mouth watering preparations might come to mind. I decided to go with a traditional French approach: roast duck with orange sauce.

Caneton a`l’Orange

This recipe comes from the great Julia Child: Mastering The Art of French Cooking, Volume One (which if you don’t already own, you really should). If you can get your hands on a fresh duckling, go for it, but if you can’t, you might have better luck finding a frozen duck at the grocery store (on my to do list: befriend a hunter! 😉 ). Either way, duck is simply a delicious bird, composed entirely… click to read more…

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Spaghetti & Fontina-Stuffed Veal Meatballs

Lately, my pasta dishes have kind of obviously been focused on comfort-food, and this is no different. Today, we have another classic dish, with a little twist to make it something special: spaghetti and fontina-stuffed veal meatballs.

Spaghetti & Fontina-Stuffed Veal Meatballs

I decided to make my own tomato sauce, but I struggled with it. When I say struggled, I don’t mean that making the sauce was hard–far from it! The real difficulty was resisting my temptation to over-complicate things and throw in all sorts of herbs and spices. I decided for once to give the classic Italian cooking mantras a chance and to let the tomatoes speak for themselves, hoping they wouldn’t let me down. As it turns out, the tomatoes heard my prayers and they came through! I didn’t have any great fresh tomatoes, but I did try a recommendation for a click to read more…

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Osso Bucco

I love veal, and if I could eat veal all the time, I would. Unfortunately, its one of those foods that caught something of a reputation that it doesn’t entirely deserve. This makes enjoying it all the more difficult though since not everybody you’re cooking for will approach or even consider veal quite the same way as you (a veal lover, of course). I however, couldn’t hold back the craving any longer and I went right for the veal dish that is one of my all-time favorites: osso bucco.

Osso Bucco plated atop some mascarpone polenta

If you’ve never had osso bucco before, you really have to try it. This is one of those dishes that, I think, always leads to full bellies, happy guests, and clean plates. Why? Osso bucco is a beautiful, Italian preparation of veal that really shows off the unique flavor and tender qualities of the meat with the culinary sensibilities of Italian cuisine.

You start with a thick, tough cut of… click to read more…

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