Category Archives: Uncategorized

A Chopped Salad of Sorts

Chop salad final

Someone once told me that the intended glory of a chopped salad is that you can eat it with a spoon. This sounds silly and I wasn’t able to verify it it, but I did glean that a “chopped salad” is derivative of classic, component-based salads like the Cobb or Nicoise. In the past several years, it’s evolved into a bastard child of those, something no longer tied to lineage or ingredients but to method: hacking up a bowl of lettuce and toppings with a mezzaluna, assembly-line style, at one of its namesake franchises here in the Northeast. Enthusiasm for the chopped salad has since waned a bit, but there were strong opinions on this subject during its heyday.

cutting off grapefruit peelgrapefruit supreme Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Gluten-Free, Recipe, Salads, Side, Uncategorized, Vegetarian

A Basic Grain Bowl

easy rice bowl_finalHere’s a quick recipe for a style of meal I’ve been eating a lot lately. It’s one of those “component” bowls, a cousin of a Korean bibimbap, that I make so often that I rarely think it merits a recipe. If I were to post a photo like the one above on Instagram and someone asked me for the recipe, it would seem sufficient to just say: Fried egg + soy-glazed tofu + sautéed greens + hot sauce, over mixed grains.

pan-fried tofu

But there are a few tricks and details that elevate a rice bowl from a patchy mishmash to the kind that that you’ll crave. As with most things in the kitchen, it comes down to details: tasting along the way, cooking with care, making sure that each individual component is something you’d want to eat on its own. Here I’m sharing my favorite method for tofu—the results are slightly sweet, a bit caramelized and crispy around the edges—and it requires no time pressing or marinading. Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Entrees, Gluten-Free, Uncategorized, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Entrees

Salad Re-do: Kimchi, Spinach, Sharp Cheddar, Fried Egg

Kimichisal1900wThis time of year, I love the idea of offering something quick and indulgent to fix for yourself right when you get home from a holiday cocktail party. I only shared such a recipe one other time, and that was three years ago, but this particular scenario for cooking looms large in my mind. It comes in handy all year long.

mise900w

You know how it is. You go to a party after work, have a drink or two ( . . . or three or four . . . ) while snacking on finger food that does more to stimulate hunger than satisfy it. You get home and you need sustenance. Of course, you should eat a pile of raw kale and a bowl lentils, but it’s the holidays, and you’ve got a buzz going. And really, step back and assess this situation: It would have been so much easier to just pick up a slice of pizza or some takeout, but no, you are cooking for yourself! Congratulations! You can eat whatever you want for dinner. Continue reading

6 Comments

Filed under Uncategorized

8 Gift Ideas + Quinoa-Stuffed Delicata Squash

gallery-green

I’ve never done a gift guide before, mostly because I don’t think I have terrific taste and have never thought of myself as an especially good gift giver. But this year, I’ve introduced some fun new food things into my life. And having spent much of it shilling my Made by Lukas veggie burgers, I’ve also met lots of makers of unique, terrific stuff. It made sense to take a stab at a gift guide, geared to the people in your life who like food. Below are eight of items, some whackier than others.

photo (26)

(And if you want to skip the gifts and just scroll down to the recipe: Just before Thanksgiving, I shared a vegetarian and gluten-free holiday main dish on Charlotte Today, the morning show down in Charlotte where some of my family lives. It aired the day before Thanksgiving, so I doubt anyone had time to whip it up for their Thanksgiving spreads. I’m including the recipe here in preparation for upcoming holiday feasts [the recipe is at the end of the post]. Here’s the video.)
Continue reading

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

11 Thanksgiving Contenders

IMG_6501

Maybe you need some ideas for what to serve this Thanksgiving, or maybe you don’t. This time of year, I always indulge myself with Thanksgiving fantasies—all the new and sometimes healthy twists on old favorites, or bygone classics I’ve never gotten around to trying, they tempt me like a really great department store catalog with the promise of abundant, unique, exacting perfection. Oh, I think, if I only had my way it’d be SO PERFECT.

But when it comes down to it—and I’ve written about this before, more than once—I always end up having the same epiphany. There are lots of opportunities to host a delicious feast, one in which I, the cook, can have ham-fisted control over every detail. But Thanksgiving isn’t one of them. In my case Thanksgiving is more about tradition and surrender, letting everyone who has a stake do her or his thing, and then, most importantly, about sitting down at the table and sharing it with people you like and love.

That said, maybe you’re still struggling for some vegetarian ideas. Here, in no particular order, are eleven suggestions from the archives.

(And there’s this free little recipe e-pamphlet I made a few years ago, as well as this round-up from before that. Whew.)

1. Main: Lentil & Squash Lasagna with Caramelized Onions (vegetarian)

LasagnaAssembly_600w

2. Appetizer: Feta & Radish Dip (vegetaian, gluten-free)

Feta platter Continue reading

1 Comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Delicata Quesadillas with Pepita-Cilantro Spread

photo 2 (1)

Last week at R&D Foods in Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, I got a quesadilla that was just perfection. These types of assembled lunch meals can seem so simple—R&D has a creative, flavor-forward menu and is very mindful about ingredient sourcing, but the set-up is loosely based on the same model as a sandwich shop or deli, where all the sauces and fillings are prepped and pre-made, so that sandwiches only need to be assembled and heated up to order—but it’s so easy for things to go wrong.

photo 3

When the ingredients are fresh, flavorful, and used in balance; when the sandwich (or in this case, quesadilla) is heated properly to create all the right crisp and gooey textures and isn’t flecked with the burnt bits of fifteen other meals that were cooked on the same sandwich press; and when it hasn’t been sitting in a paper bag for very long, so that when it’s unwrapped from the parchment and eaten out of hand on a park bench, in a patch of some of the last of the hot, early-afternoon sun for the year . . . In other words, when every little detail is exactly right, it can make a person pretty happy to be alive. Such was my Friday afternoon.

photo 1 (2)

Continue reading

3 Comments

Filed under Appetizer, Entrees, Gluten-Free, Recipe, Side, Snack, Uncategorized, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Entrees

My Zucchini Bread + More Salads

2 salads1
That’s right: More! Salad! I eat at least one salad a day. I love an elaborate, unusual one like Crack Salad or a Salad Treat, but most often it’s something simple, just some greens topped with whatever vegetables, nuts, and crumbles or shavings of cheese I’ve got lying around. Thus it was a pretty obvious subject when I started organizing the next issue of my digital magazine, Feast by Lukas. “Season’s Salads” has a melon salad spiked with ginger and fresh chilies, a smashed cucumber salad with a nubby sesame dressing, a pear and greens salad topped with savory granola, a torn tortilla salad with tomatoes, avocados, and a chili-lime vinaigrette, and several more.

ipadmockup_forwebsite

This is the 4th issue of Feast by Lukas, which completes the first volume! It’s been so much fun and I feel like it’s starting to click. I hope you’ll check out Season’s Salads issue—the app is free to download in the iTunes store, and within it subscriptions and individual issues are available for purchase ($3.99/issue, or $13.99 for a yearly subscription). And if you’ve read it and like it (or don’t like it, that’s fine and fair), would you…. I hate asking for this, but…. give it a rating and/or review in the iTunes store?

Zucchini bread_for blog Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Baking, Recipe, Salads, Uncategorized, Vegetarian, Vegetarian Entrees