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        Recipes

        PORK ROAST TACOS WITH TOMATILLO SAUCE AND HERBS

        PORK ROAST TACOS WITH TOMATILLO SAUCE AND HERBS

        SOMETIMES, WITH THE RIGHT INGREDIENTS AND COOKWARE, MEALS ALMOST MAKE THEMSELVES

        It's crazy how easy this pork roast is. This is why I call it:

        THE CRAZIEST, EASIEST PORK ROAST

        This is dead easy (have I mentioned?), and you can measure the ingredients by the handfuls. Leave precise measurements for baking or graduate chemistry class (which is sort of what baking is anyway).

        INGREDIENTS

        • One 8- to 10-lb boneless pork roast, skin trimmed

        • 2 large bottles of roasted tomatillo sauce

        • 10-12 medium ripe tomatoes, chopped into chunks

        • 6 or 7 garlic cloves, paper removed, smashed and then coarsely chopped

        • 1 handful chopped flat-leaf parsley

        • 1 handful chopped basil

        • 1 handful chopped cilantro

        • Salt and pepper

        • Crushed red pepper

        PROCEDURE

        In your EuroCAST Dutch Oven or Double Roaster:

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        1. Over medium heat, combine all the ingredients and bring to a low boil

        2. Let simmer for about 2 hours over low heat, turning every 30 minutes or so

        3. Remove from heat and cover with tinfoil

        4. Return the cookware to your oven, at 300F oven

        5. After 1 hour, remove foil

        6. Continue roasting in the oven to allow the top to brown, one hour

        7. Remove from heat, pour contents to a large bowl

        8. Let cool enough that you can shred with two forks (if you decide against putting content in a bowl so you can shred the meat in the EuroCAST cookware, be careful not to scrape against the sides of the pan, as the non-stick performance could be diminished)

        9. During shredding, make sure to mix the pork with the sauce

        TIP: While you're roasting this low and slow in the oven, check it occasionally. If the sauce level gets too low, the pork may dry out. Just add water to come up to the top of the roast.

        SERVING SUGGESTIONS

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        Serve it like this. People can choose the bite they're in the mood for. A bit of rice, a bit of pork. A spoonful of avocado with a bit of jalapeño. Every bite interesting.

        Serve it like this. People can choose the bite they're in the mood for. A bit of rice, a bit of pork. A spoonful of avocado with a bit of jalapeño. Every bite interesting.

        For something more casual, put on shorts and flip flops and do this:

        Taco style. I like the little corn tortillas that are just big enough to fit in your hand. In each tortilla, layer your flavors with the following classic ingredients:

        • Shredded cheese

        • Sour cream

        • Cojita cheese

        • Hot sauce

        • Guacamole

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        FRIED CHICKEN BREASTS IN BUTTER AND OLIVES WITH FARFELLINI SALAD

        FRIED CHICKEN BREASTS IN BUTTER AND OLIVES WITH FARFELLINI SALAD

        SIMPLE CHICKEN.

        Inspired by my love of Italian cooking, this recipe is layered with flavor and easy on the eyes.

        FRIED CHICKEN BREASTS IN BUTTER AND OLIVES

        INGREDIENTS

        • 3 whole skinless, boneless breasts, or 6 halves (see Chicken tip below)

        • 2 cups flour (see Flour tip below) seasoned with 1 T. Black pepper

        • 1/4 cup olive oil

        • 2 T. minced flat leaf (Italian) parsley

        • Also, the sauce ingredients (see below)

        Chicken tip: Slide the breasts into a large kitchen bag, or between two pieces of wax paper. Hit them with a rolling pin or a kitchen mallet to a uniform thickness. This ensures even cooking, makes the dish cook faster, and the pounding is quick as a hare. Hey, a time-saver and quality assurance, all in the form of a rolling pin.

        Flour tip: Flour will soften the flavor edges of the spices you use, so if you're feeling adventurous, or want to just add dimension and personality to the spices, throw in a little onion powder or cayenne pepper.  Also, do not salt the flour! You'll get salty brininess from the capers in the sauce, so you won't need it.

        PROCEDURE

        The 12" sauté pan is ideal for dishes such as this. And the cleanup step prior to making the sauce is breathtakingly easy.

        The EuroCAST 12" sauté pan is ideal for dishes such as this. And the cleanup step prior to making the sauce is breathtakingly easy.

        1. Heat oil in your largest EuroCAST skillet over medium heat.

        2. Dredge each piece of chicken in the flour that you seasoned with pepper (remember, no salt!).

        3. Slide gently into the heated oil.

        4. Cook each piece until browned on each side, 3-4 minutes. Turn.

        5. When done browning on both sides, move chicken to a plate to make the sauce.

        6. Pour out the oil in the skillet and gently wipe away any browned flour bits.

        For the sauce

        • 1 stick unsalted butter

        • 6-7 oil-packed anchovy fillets

        • 1 cup halved grape or cherry tomatoes

        • 1 cup pitted olives (green, black, or a combination, as you fancy)

        • 1/4 cup capers (non-pareil capers have excellent size, flavor, and texture for this dish)

        The finish

        1. Combine butter, tomatoes, and anchovies into the warm skillet.

        2. Use the back of wooden spoon or silicone spatula to mash the anchovies into the butter. They will break down quickly. You'll be smashing some tomatoes along the way. It's all good.

        3. Add the olives and capers.

        4. Put all these ingredients into your large sauté pan, cook over medium heat until the butter is melted and the anchovies have incorporated themselves.

        5. Add the fried chicken breasts back into the skillet and baste them with the sauce.

        6. Right before serving, add 2 T. minced flat leaf parsley. You can either fold them in at the end of the basting step, or plate and then top.

        Serve over green herby salad with greens like arugula, chives, dill, and fennel fronds, dressed lightly with excellent olive oil and and a squeeze of lemon.

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        A GLORIOUS PASTA SALAD IS WITHIN YOUR REACH.

        What makes a salad truly amazing? When done right, they are a feast for the eyes as much as they are for the taste buds. And texture, when done right, makes each forkful demand the next.

        Fennel, garlic, and herbs create a fragrant, integrated flavor that is both familiar and mysterious.

        Fennel, garlic, and herbs create a fragrant, integrated flavor that is both familiar and mysterious.

        Enter my farfellini salad. Farfalla, in Italian, means bowtie (sometimes people call farfalla pasta bowtie pasta), and so farfellini just means tiny bowties.

        Not just your run-of-the-mill pasta salad, this is gorgeous, fresh, unctuous, and deliriously flavorful.

        FARFELLINI SALAD

        • 1 lb farfellini -- or other wee pasta shape -- cooked and rinsed. Mix with 1/4 cup good quality olive oil, kosher salt, and black pepper

        • Root vegetables, scrubbed, peeled, and halved

        Roast all at 400 degrees Fahrenheit on our roasting pan or the top of the double-roaster for 1 hour, or until fork tender. Let cool and coarsely chop.

        Slip garlic from their skins, smash and add to the cooked pasta and toss everything to integrate the flavors.

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        ROOT VEGETABLES

        IN THE VERSION HERE, I ROASTED BEETS, PARSNIPS, TURNIPS AND FENNEL AND ONE WHOLE HEAD OF GARLIC IN ITS SKIN. AFTER ROASTING, SLICE UP THE GARLIC HEAD, REMOVE THE SKINS, SQUEEZING THE ROASTED GOODNESS OUT OF THE CLOVES. FUN. FRAGRANT. SWEET AND RICH.

        Add:

        I used the top of the EuroCAST double-roaster. Our most versatile tool, it has induction-ready plates on both bottom and top for fast, energy-friendly, eco-friendly, non-toxic cooking on modern induction plates.

        I used the top of the EuroCAST double-roaster. Our most versatile tool, it has induction-ready plates on both bottom and top for fast, energy-friendly, eco-friendly, non-toxic cooking on modern induction plates.

        • 6-8 oz crumbled goat cheese

        • 1 cup fresh grated Parmesan

        • 12 oz or more sliced salami, mortadella, and/or prosciutto rolled up like a beach blanket and sliced thin into ribbons.

        • 1/3 cup fresh chopped flat leaf parsley

        • 1/4 cup minced chives

        Mix to incorporate and let sit to blend an additional 30 minutes.

        Taste for seasoning before serving. Then, at the last moment, squeeze lemon juice over the entire salad. Ah, lemon juice. It adds the kind of mysterious sparkle and refreshing aroma that makes this salad (and lots of other dishes) just sing when they get to the table.

        PANTRY MEAL: LENTIL SOUP WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND CHICKPEAS

        PANTRY MEAL: LENTIL SOUP WITH BUTTERNUT SQUASH AND CHICKPEAS

        PANTRY MEALS

        Before we dive head long into eating the boxed and canned food, let me suggest an alt. route. Meaning, there are more ways than canned peas to handle this crisis. And, if you’re like me, already tired of those canned peas and the tinned tuna-Look no further.

        It’s gotta be easy enough, cause now’s not the time for R&D, and they also have to be easy to hold on to,- with great shelf lives. These recipes are that, and like always…there are substitutes and ways around the foodstuffs that make you go “ewww”!. :) We can do without more “EW”.

        I give you lentil soup made from dried lentils, butternut squash and chickpeas. Laced with a few aromatics and long life veg like onions and garlic. This dish is fortifying and just might give you a little peace in this bonkers time.

        LENTIL SOUP

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        INGREDIENTS

        • 1 bag ( oz. dried lentils)

        • 1 large onion diced

        • 2 carrots diced

        • 1 large orange or yellow pepper (I like these chunky, but a small dice will do, too)

        • 4 cups chicken stock

        • 5 cloves garlic, peeled

        • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

        • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

        • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

        PROCEDURE

        For the lentils

        1. Fill a large bowl with water and add the lentils, swirl around for a few minutes with your hands and then drain them.

        2. In your large EuroCAST Dutch oven, add the lentils and just enough water to cover them by about one inch.

        3. Over medium heat, gradually bring the lentils to a boil and let rumble there for 10 minutes. The liquid will have reduced by half.

        4. Cover and remove from heat.

        While the lentils are doing their business, in your EuroCAST skillet, sauté in 4 tablespoons olive oil:

        • 1 whole red onion diced

        • 2 carrots diced

        • Yellow pepper 

        • Garlic minced

        Sauté until they start to take on a caramel color. Then season well with kosher salt and add the vegetables to the lentils.

        Taste and adjust seasoning if needed.

        Now, add this magic to the lentils:

        • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

        • 1/4-1/2 teaspoon ground cumin

        • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

        Add the chicken stock. Put your lentils back on the stove on low until the flavors have blended.

        I love this the first day. But like many recipes, it just gets better and better after sitting around in the refrigerator for a few days. It takes on a lovely earthiness that pairs really well with the butternut squash and ricotta toasts (see below).

        SERVING TIPS

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        Let’s make this soup even more gorgeous and delicious, shall we?

        I love to add raw ingredients to cooked things for brightness and texture — and it’s pretty, so we get aesthetics points.

        Get a shallow bowl for the soup. This will let you show off all the goodness you’re about to put on top.

        Put on top anything you want, but consider these suggestions if you don’t want to work too hard:

        • Slivers of raw red onion

        • Handfuls of watercress or flat leaf parsley, dressed in olive oil and a splash of lemon juice. (spinach, kale, swiss chard or green cabbage soften in the oil and lemon for a bit works too! And added bonus: it' has a significantly good shelf life)

        • A handful of toasted and finely chopped nuts such as almonds or pumpkin seeds

        • AN EGG. DO I NEED TO SAY IT AGAIN...AN EGG!! 

        Yes, you can use more than one topping.

        AND NOW: SERVING TIPS ON STEROIDS

        That first photo above shows you the lentils, yes. And it’s made more gorgeous by that EGG.

        But what are those other things?

        Chickpeas. Chickpeas have 25% protein by weight Just a cup and you’re on your way to hunger satisfied.

        Now, let’s make them ridiculously delish.

        For this fun, you’ll need 1 can chickpeas, drained, dried on paper towels. Here are two ways you can handle these darlings.

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        SAUTÉED CHICKPEAS WITH ALEPPO FLAKES

        1. Once they’re drained and dried well, toss in a bowl with a drizzle of olive oil, salt, pepper, and Aleppo flakes.

        2. Transfer to your EuroCAST skillet.

        3. Place in a 375 oven till they are dried out. 20-25 minutes.

        PUFFED CHICKPEAS

        1. Drain as above. Make sure they are extra dry. You’ll by frying them in corn oil, and water will instantly steam and spray oil unless the chickpeas are dry. I said dry.

        2. In your EuroCAST deep sided sauté pan or chicken fryer, add 1 inch of corn oil and, once dry (they must be dry, have I mentioned that?), fry them until puffy and crisp.

        3. Drain on paper towels. Sprinkle on kosher salt and red pepper flakes (or grind some black pepper over).

        Whichever of these two chickpea tricks you pick, when presenting your lentil soup in your big, shallow bowl, toss a handful over the lentils, and then top with the other toppings. See how pretty. And the extra texture and spice will thrill the table.

        BUTTERNUT SQUASH SPREAD

        This is just nice to have around. It’s delicious for meals, snacks, or those quick bites during the day that shouldn’t really count as snacks.

        And if you’re going to enjoy a bowl of lentil soup, it’s terrific to smear on some toasted baguette to accompany the soup.

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        HOW TO PUT IT TOGETHER

        • 1 whole butternut squash, roasted and flesh removed to a bowl, then mashed with a fork

        • 1 cup whole milk ricotta cheese

        • Zest from one whole lemon

        • 1 teaspoon Aleppo flake

        • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

        • 1/2 cup roughly chopped flat leaf parsley

        Combine loosely in the bowl. Spread on toasted baguette. If you don’t want the egg on your lentil soup, put it on top of the baguette.

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        PASTA FAGIOLI WITH ZUCCHINI AND PARMESAN

        PASTA FAGIOLI WITH ZUCCHINI AND PARMESAN

        PASTA FAGIOLI WITH ZUCCHINI AND PARMESAN

        BONUS ROUND-IT’S AWESOME AT THE KIDS' TABLE

        Oh, the simple joy of an easy meal that can go in both directions, waltzing first to the kids' table and then -- with a few additions and a bottle of your favorite chianti -- traipsing easily to the adult table. Artfully and soulfully done, such a duet of a meal would play so that neither kids nor adults feel left out.

        This "adult" version of the Italian classic soup,  pasta e fagioli,  adds a few touches towards the end of cooking and at the table to bring in seasonal vegetables and the incredible flavor of high-quality, thinly sliced Parmesan cheese.

        This "adult" version of the Italian classic soup, pasta e fagioli, adds a few touches towards the end of cooking and at the table to bring in seasonal vegetables and the incredible flavor of high-quality, thinly sliced Parmesan cheese.

        My babies are high-schoolers. As you'd imagine, being kids of a culinary-brained mom, they grew up with lots of vegetables, bold flavors, and stinky odds and ends. Their noses and eyeballs are tuned up for discovery. Oft-heard at my table: "Hmmm, what's that?"  Sometimes they don't even pause the fork for an answer before they dig in, and then it's a muffled. : "Yummm, what's this?"

        With all this coming out of my kitchen, though, they still love the classics, and so many of those are simple. Unbelievably simple.

        This includes my classical, unadorned version of a straight-up pasta e fagioli, the famous Italian bean soup with pasta.

        Excellent quality canned beans and tomatoes make this come together in a flash between homework and piano practice.

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        And before bringing it to the adult table, I add in red chard (or escarole if it's available, because that's what they do in Italy), zucchini, and Parmesan. It turns this classic dish into something so beautifully tempting -- who knows? --  you just might be sharing your "adult" version with the little ones.

        Ingredients

        • 3 tablespoons olive oil, plus more

        • 1 large onion, chopped

        • 1-14.5-ounce can whole peeled tomatoes

        • 3 cans low sodium white cannellini beans

        • 4 cloves garlic chopped

        • 2 cups or more chicken stock

        • 6 sprigs parsley

        • Kosher salt

        • Freshly ground pepper

        • 1/2 pound small bite-sized pasta such as macaroni

        • 1 small head red chard, or a green such as kale, spinach, arugula

        • 1 cup thinly sliced zucchini

        Procedure

        I want a great texture for the soup for both adults and children, but I also want the adult version to be a little special. Let's start with something all kids will love.

        1. In your EuroCAST Dutch oven (get the 5 quart version, heat 3 tablespoons of oil over medium heat.

        2. Sauté the onion and chopped garlic, stirring occasionally, until softened, 8–10 minutes.

        3. Add tomatoes, crushing with your hands or the back of a wooden spoon

        4. Cook the tomatoes, stirring often, until liquid is reduced by half.

        5. Add 2 cups stock, bring to a low simmer.

        6. Add beans and their liquid; cook until flavors meld, 12 minutes.

        7. Taste.

        8. Season.

        9. Add chopped parsley.

        Now that you have the basic soup, it's time to create a luscious texture.

        1. Remove 2 cups and blend it either with an immersion blender (be careful, soup is hot!) or a standing blender, then return blended soup to Dutch oven.

        2. Add pasta; cook, stirring and adding extra stock if needed. Cook until al dente, 8-10 minutes.

        At this point you've completed the "kids' version" of this dish. But carry on for the more adventurous eaters.

        For the adult version:

        1. Add zucchini and cook 1 minute

        2. Add red chard and cook until wilted, 4 to 6 minutes

        3. Taste and season with salt and pepper.

        Serve soup drizzled with oil and then topped with Parmesan and chili flakes.

        FRENCH OMELET AND CRISPY HASH BROWNS

        FRENCH OMELET AND CRISPY HASH BROWNS

        OMELETS THE FRENCH WAY ARE EASY AND WONDERFULLY DELICIOUS. HERE’S HOW.

        A few months back I ran this menu after cooking with my good friend Sandro Reinhardt. it’s just as good now and fits into my PANTRY SAVVY attitude.

        I hope this brings you some peace and calm and crispy potatoes. :)

        Enjoy:

        Just finished up cooking and filming last week with a restaurateur in Los Angeles. He wanted to do simple food that’s sure to please family and friends.

        I was totally on board with that. Sandro Reinhardt, who owns a long-time favorite restaurant in town, had me over to his kitchen and we put together (among other delicious food) an omelet and hash browns. Oh. My. So. Good.

        Here’s my take on what we did, so you can bring home all the goodness.

        OMELET, PEPIN-STYLE

        Get out your best omelet-sized EuroCAST skillet. Now, it’s time to channel our inner Jacques Pépin.

        1. Beat the eggs until they are really well incorporated. White and yolk should be homogenized. Jacques Pepin suggests piercing the yolks with your fork first.

        2. Season the eggs (see my suggested seasoning below!).

        3. Butter is optional in EuroCAST. If you want butter, use the best grass-fed butter you can find.

        4. Pro tip: Plan to put in just a bit of filling. Adding too much of any filling will make the rolling process cumbersome. If your filling will be vegetables such as mushrooms or bell peppers, COOK THE FILLING FIRST! In a separate pan! Get all those flavors intensified and free of water. (If you’re just using fresh herbs, no need to cook those first.)

        5. Put skillet over medium heat and bring to temperature (if you’re using butter, it should be foaming). If the pan gets too hot, just remove from the flame/heat for a few moments. Don’t adjust the flame/heat.

        6. Add egg mixture all at once. Get it all in there (a silicone spatula is your friend).

        7. Start whisking the egg in the pan — wooden chopsticks are a dream here. This makes sure that all the eggs get some contact time with the pan.

        8. Shake the skillet gently to move the eggs around. This will also tend to incorporate the fillings at a uniform level. (See my suggested burrata filling below!) At this point, the omelet should be set where it has touched the pan, with some fine edges. Work quickly over low heat to achieve the golden yellow color without browning.

        9. The right doneness for an omelet is what the French call baveuse — just a bit custardy and wet inside, but set up where the eggs have been touching the pan. When it gets to this point, take the pan off the heat.

        10. With your silicone spatula or your fingers, start rolling the top edge of the omelet over the bottom (“Just like rolling a carpet,” says Chef Pepin).

        11. Once the edge you’ve started has rolled over the filling, it’s ready to plate.

        12. Tilt the pan over a plate. Turn the skillet steadily upright, with the plate under it to catch the omelet. As the omelet rolls out of the pan, it completes its full roll to completely embrace the fillings. (This move is much easier with EuroCAST than with heavier cookware. And need I mention the easy cleanup.)

        13. The beautiful bottom side of the omelet is now on top.

        14. Garnish with fresh herbs and chilis.

        FILLING

        For omelets, fill lightly, avoid overly-wet ingredients, and pick what’s fresh and delightful. Here’s what I mean.

        IMG_4711.jpg

        The beautiful thing about omelets is that you can fill them with seasonal goodies (just don’t overfill — and you want the filling relatively free of water).

        This filling is great for Spring. Make sure you drain the burrata, though!

        1. 1/2 cup burrata per omelet.

        2. Place the burrata in a fine mesh sieve, and position the sieve over a paper towel or two.

        3. Let the burrata drain. It has a little watery whey to it which will make the omelette watery if you don’t .

        4. When it’s drained, whip it with a fork until it’s creamy. (See the photo — that’s burrata in a bowl, and it’s so, so good.)

        5. You could use another cheese, such as a ricotta or even a very soft goats cheese if you’d prefer not to go through the draining process.

        SEASONING

        As you’re beating the eggs, season them. Here’s my suggestion:

        • 1 tablespoon chopped parsley

        • 1/2 teaspoon chopped oregano

        • Salt and fresh black pepper to taste

        HASH BROWN POTATOES

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        You can make these right before you make the omelet, and leave them in your EuroCAST skillet (a big one is good for these, and the big skillet holds heat nicely thanks to the dense ferrous plate on the bottom).

        The trick to making these lickety-split and with a lovely browning: Boil the potatoes whole the night before. So Sandro said to me, and we then proved that terrific advice in his kitchen. (Video to come.)

        INGREDIENTS

        • 3 waxy yellow or white potatoes

        • 1-2 potatoes per person

        • 1/2 of a large red onion, sliced thin

        • Olive oil

        • Salt and pepper

        • Herbs you love — I suggest parsley, oregano, chopped chives

        • Finely diced Serrano or Jalepeno if desired. I do desire.

        The night before:

        Cook them until just fork tender, then let them sit covered in your EuroCAST Dutch oven until cool then retire them to the fridge to cool completely, ideally overnight. You can keep them in the fridge for a couple of nights though, with no problem.

        The day you’ll be making your hash browns:

        • Slice them into match sticks (see photos)

        • Once cut into matchsticks, season the potatoes well with salt and pepper

        • Cooking over low heat to insure even browning. The potatoes are already cooked so theres no fear of running your teeth over a toothsome bit of potato. But, you don’t want them to burn. So keep it low and slow.

        In your small EuroCAST skillet (or medium — if you’re making a lot of hash browns), over low heat:

        • Add 1/8 cup olive oil.

        • When the oil is hot add 1/2 of the potatoes in an even layer

        • Add the sliced red onion and the 1/2 of the herbs

        • Cover with the remaining potatoes and mash down with the back of a spoon

        • Continue to cook until the underside has browned nicely and has crisped, about 5-7 minutes

        • Over the sink, invert onto a large plate so the crisp, brown side is up on the plate

        • Then take the pan and the plate back to the stove, and slide the non-crisp side down into the skillet

        • Cook until that side has crisped nicely, about 5-7 minutes

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        Let cool slightly and garnish with the remaining herbs and chilis.

        Cut into wedges.