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Archive for the ‘recipe’ Category

Ratatouille Ribeye

Ratatouille Ribeye is a culinary tromphe l’oeil, a vegetable replacement for hearty beef. As delicious as it is by itself, it’s even better with a few lamb meatballs.


1. Roast vegetables. Thinly slice 2 medium-sized zucchini, 1/2 large onion and 1 cored, cleaned red pepper. Slice orange-gold tomatoes in thick (1/2 inch) sices.  Place vegetables on a cookie sheet and drizzle lightly with olive oil. Slow roast in oven (200 degrees) for 35-40 minutes.

2. Prepare stew. Chop up the remaining 1/2 onion and 4-6 medium sized zucchinis. Saute in 1-2 tablespoons of olive oil. When vegetables are translucent, add 1/2 cup of water or chicken stock, 1-2 finely minced gloves of garlic. Stew while other vegetables are roasting.

3. Combined stewed and roasted vegetables. Add 1-2 teaspoons of fresh thyme, salt to taste and simmer over low heat.

Eggplant Ribeye and Onion Rings

Cut thick slices of eggplant and onions (9 1/2 inch). Soak for in buttermilk, refrigerated for 1-2 hours. Roll eggplant and onions in Panko breadcrumbs (or seasoned flour if you don’t have Panko) and deep fry or pan fry until golden. Sprinkle thyme or oregano on eggplant. Salt onion rings and eggplant to taste. Place on rack to drain.

Mediterranean Potatoes

Wash and dry small fingerling potatoes (4-6 per person). Cook in 2 quarts of near-boiling chicken broth. plus 1-2 cloves of smashed garlic for 8-10 minutes. Drain potatoes and drizzle with 1/4 cup of lemon juice and salt to taste.

Plating Ratatouille Ribeye

Spoon piperade onto plate and layer 1-2 slices of eggplant. Garnish with onion rings and potatoes.



Written by Susan Gillie

September 6, 2008 at 2:36 pm

Use It or Lose It



It’s old, old, old. It’s so old it’s not even old-school. Aspic, (AS-pihk) “a savory jelly, usually clear, made of clarified meat, fish or vegetable stock and gelatin,” is a whale-bone corset to our Spanxx food culture.

Aspic isn’t out just because it’s old. It lost favor with a feminist-oriented labor force who turned their noises up at genteel feminity. Aspic is white-glove and garden parties. It’s Junion League. It’s southern belle. Bygone food for bygone womanhood.

In our rush to judgment, and in our haste for new and better, we misjudged aspic. Though it’s reputation is fussy and snooty, it’s practical. It’s cool and crisp, perfect for hot, summer weather. It’s an easy way to prolong the life of delicate, delectable vegetables such as cucumbers and radishes.

Victoria Wexler has a post on her blog, Going Local, about the loss of diversity in our food. We’re losing on two fronts–types of produce and traditional preservation methods. 

Although old, aspic needs to make a comeback. It’s perfect for busy lives. This morning, I used local radishes purchased Wednesday at the farmer’s market to make aspic. It took all of twelve minutes to make a week’s worth of fresh salads.

Aspic lends itself to improvisation. Jalapeno, habanero or bird’s eye chili’s give this recipe more fire, a Matcha tea or vegetable broth gives it a new twist.

City Market Radish and Green Onion Aspic 

  • 1-2 bunches of radishes coarsely shredded (about 2 cups)
  • 3-4 green onions, finely chopped (green parts only)
  • 1 clove of garlic, finely chopped
  • 2 1/2 cups chicken broth
  • 1 packet of unflavored gelatin, mixed with 1/2 cup of cold water
  • juice of one lemon

Shred radishes, chop green onions and garlic and mix together. In a small bowl, dissolve gelatin into the cold water and let sit for five minutes.

Heat chicken broth until it simmers and remove from heat. Stir in the gelatin and completely dissolve. Stir in lemon juice and vegetable mixture.

Pour into a greased 9″ x 9″ Pyrex dish and chill for at least four hours.  Cut into squares and serve. (Or, you can pour mixture into greased custard dishes or gelatin molds if you want a more dramatic presentation. )

Written by Susan Gillie

June 16, 2008 at 3:08 pm

Wandering, Wondering Brussels-Sprout Slaw

I like brussels sprouts, in theory, but often they’re insipid and unpleasant. This “slaw” though is refreshingly light. Inspired by Gourmet Magazine’s recipe for St. Patrick’s Day, it’s a wonderful late Winter/early Spring salad.

  • 1 1/2 lbs brussels sprouts
  • 1 medium carrot, finely grated
  • 1 cup salted, roasted pistachio nuts, coarsely chopped 
  • 4-6 tablespoons Asiago cheese, finely grated
  • 1/4 cup of canola oil
  • 3 tablespoons of rice wine vinegar or lemon juice
  • pepper to tast

Wash brussels sprouts and discard any yellowed leaves. Wash carrot, peel off outer skin with vegetable peeler. Coarsely chop nuts. Using a mandoline, cut Brussels sprouts into very thin slices. Finely grate carrot. Add both to a salad bowl and toss. Coarsely chop pistachio nuts and put to the side. Creamy dressing:  Add pepper to canola oil and mix. Grate Asiago cheese directly into oil and mix with hand blender. Gradually add rice vinegar or lemon juice until the dressing is creamy and frothy. Pour dressing over vegetables and mix thoroughly. Sprinkle pistachio nuts over slaw.Serves 6 as a side saladNotes: If you do not have a mandoline (or adjustable-blade slicer) and your knife skills are good, you can use a chef’s knife to cut the thin slices of Brussels sprout. Mandolines are pricey, but K-Mart sells a Martha Stewart mandoline for $9.95 plus tax. You can mix the dressing using a whisk, but a hand blender is easier.

Written by Susan Gillie

March 28, 2008 at 9:24 am

Posted in recipe, Uncategorized

Cucumber Noodles

This recipe, also from Gourmet Magazine, needs no changes. It’s perfect as is.

Written by Susan Gillie

March 28, 2008 at 9:22 am

Posted in recipe

Adrienne’s collard greens

A bag or large bunch of fresh collard greens (2lbs) cleaned, stems removed

  • 1 smoked turkey wing
  • 2 tsp Mrs. Dash (the original or any blend you like)
  • salt and pepper
  • 2-3 tablespoons of sauteed bacon
  • 2-3 tablespoons vinegar (rice or white vinegar)
  • red pepper flakes (optional)

Break smoked turkey wing into sections and place in a large pot, covered with water (1 cup).  Bring to a boil and simmer for 30-40 minutes.

Pull meat off bones, cut up and put back into water, turning heat to medium. Add 1/3 of cleaned greens into pan. Add seasonings. Once the greens cook down (5-10 minutes) put the next third into the pot. Cook another 5-10 minutes, then add remaining greens.

Simmer for 1-2 hours (depending upon how crunchy or cooked you prefer your greens). Before serving, add bacon, vinegar and pepper flakes.

Written by Susan Gillie

March 3, 2008 at 3:31 pm

Posted in recipe

potato-collard green leftover soup

Whenever you cook collard greens, you’ve made enough for a thrashing crew, which means leftovers. Collards wear well and you can reheat them over and over again. An even better use for these leftovers is soup.

  • 6-8 small red potatoes
  • 2 quarts chicken broth
  • fresh lemon juice (1-2 lemons)
  • 1-2 gloves of garlic, finely chopped
  • leftover collard greens

Bring chicken broth to a boil. Clean and quarter potatoes and add to broth. Lower temperature to a simmer and cook potatoes 10 minutes.

Using a skimmer, remove potatoes from broth. Marinate potatoes in lemon juice and garlic for 5-10 minutes. Cut potatoes into chunks. Return potatoes to broth and add leftover collard greens.

Heat ingredients and spoon into soup bowls. Add freshly grated Parmesan cheese or sour cream.

Written by Susan Gillie

March 3, 2008 at 3:29 pm

Posted in recipe