Involtini

Ingredients:
3 eggplants, about 1 pound each, trimmed and cut lengthwise into slices 1/4 inch thick (about 16 slices total)
¾ cup olive oil, or as needed
8 ounces feta cheese, crumbled
½ cup pine nuts
cup raisins, soaked in hot water for 10 minutes until plump, then drained
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil, more for drizzling
2 tablespoons bread crumbs
1 garlic clove, peeled and minced
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
1 ½ teaspoons dried mint
2 tablespoons chopped Italian parsley leaves
1 large egg, beaten
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 ½ cups drained canned crushed tomatoes
1 large ball fresh mozzarella in 1/4-inch slices

Directions:
1. Heat oven to 375 degrees. Place a ridged cast-iron skillet or other heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Working in batches, brush eggplant slices on both sides with olive oil and cook, turning, until soft and (if using a ridged pan) crisscrossed with grid marks. Set aside and allow to cool.
2. In a large bowl, combine feta, pine nuts, raisins, 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil, bread crumbs, garlic, lemon zest, mint and parsley. Mix in egg, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
3. Spread eggplant slices on a surface, and divide stuffing evenly among them, placing 1 to 2 tablespoons at one end of each slice. Roll up slices tightly to secure filling, and place in a 9-by-13-inch baking dish (or other shallow baking pan in which rolls fit snugly in a single layer).
4. Pour crushed tomatoes on top of eggplant rolls. Arrange mozzarella slices in a line lengthwise down center of pan. Drizzle olive oil evenly over pan, and season to taste with salt and pepper.
5. Bake until cheese has melted and eggplant is bubbling and fragrant, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from heat and allow to stand 5 to 10 minutes. Serve hot.

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Chicken Tikka Masala

Ingredients:
Part I
2 lbs boneless chicken breast
1/4 c yogurt
3 tsp minced ginger
3 tsp crushed garlic
1/4 tsp white pepper
1/4 cumin powder
1/4 tsp mace
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp green cardamom powder
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/4 tsp turmeric
3 TBS lemon juice
4 TBS vegetable oil
melted butter

Part II
5 oz. tomato paste
10 oz. tomate puree
2 lbs. tomatoes, chopped
2 tsp ginger paste
2 tsp garlic paste
2 tsp green chilies
1 TBS red chili powder
2 tsp cloves
8 green cardamom pods
salt
3 TBS butter
2/3 c cream
1 tsp fenugreek
2 tsp ginger, julienned
honey

Directions:
1. Whisk all of the ingredients in Part I together in a large bowl. A breast, cut into 2″ cubes. Marinate overnight in the refrigerator to 350 degrees F. Bake the chicken for 8 minutes, basting with butter and excess marinade and bake for another 2 minutes.

2. While doing this, make the sauce in Part II. Deseed and chop green chilies, tomatoes, tomato paste and tomato puree in a pot and a little water. Add ginger and garlic paste, green chilies, red chili powder, cardamoms, and salt. Cook over low heat until reduced to a thick sauce. Bring to a boil. Add butter and cream. Add honey, fenugreek and ginger juliennes, and finally the chickens.

Watermelon Salsa

Ingredients:
1 c diced seedless watermelon
1 c cored and diced heirloom tomatoes
2 TBS thinly diced shallots
1 TBS hot sauce
1/2 lemon, juiced
1 TBS honey
salt
2 TBS chopped basil leaves
1/2 c crumbled goat-milk feta cheese

Directions:
1. Combine watermelon, tomatoes and shallots in a bowl. Crush the tomatoes a but with your hands to provide a little extra juice.
2. Add hot sauce, lemon juice, and honey. Season with salt, and garnish with basil and feta. Then serve with tortilla chips and pretzels.

Hint: If you have any left over, serve it over grilled chicken for dinner.

Butter Chicken

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 ½ cups full-fat Greek yogurt
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1 ½ tablespoons ground turmeric
  • 2 tablespoons garam masala
  • 2 tablespoons ground cumin
  • 3 pounds chicken thighs, on the bone
  • ¼ pound unsalted butter
  • 4 teaspoons neutral oil, like vegetable oil
  • 2 medium-size yellow onions, peeled and diced
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh ginger, peeled and grated or finely diced
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 2 medium-size tomatoes, diced
  • 2 red chiles, like Anaheim, or 1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and diced
  • Kosher salt to taste
  • cup chicken stock, low-sodium or homemade
  • 1 ½ cups cream
  • 1 ½ teaspoons tomato paste
  • 3 tablespoons ground almonds, or finely chopped almonds
  • ½ bunch cilantro leaves, stems removed.

DIRECTIONS

  1. Whisk together the yogurt, lemon juice, turmeric, garam masala and cumin in a large bowl. Put the chicken in, and coat with the marinade. Cover, and refrigerate (for up to a day).
  2. In a large pan over medium heat, melt the butter in the oil until it starts to foam. Add the onions, and cook, stirring frequently, until translucent. Add the garlic, ginger and cumin seeds, and cook until the onions start to brown.
  3. Add the cinnamon stick, tomatoes, chiles and salt, and cook until the chiles are soft, about 10 minutes.
  4. Add the chicken and marinade to the pan, and cook for 5 minutes, then add the chicken stock. Bring the mixture to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer, uncovered, for approximately 30 minutes.
  5. Stir in the cream and tomato paste, and simmer until the chicken is cooked through, approximately 10 to 15 minutes.
  6. Add the almonds, cook for an additional 5 minutes and remove from the heat. Garnish with the cilantro leaves.

Shakshuka

INGREDIENTS

  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 large onion, halved and thinly sliced
  • 1 large red bell pepper, seeded and thinly sliced
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  •  teaspoon cayenne, or to taste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole plum tomatoes with juices, coarsely chopped
  • ¾ teaspoon salt, more as needed
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper, more as needed
  • 5 ounces feta cheese, crumbled (about 1 1/4 cups)
  • 6 large eggs
  •  Chopped cilantro, for serving
  •  Hot sauce, for serving

PREPARATION

  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add onion and bell pepper. Cook gently until very soft, about 20 minutes. Add garlic and cook until tender, 1 to 2 minutes; stir in cumin, paprika and cayenne, and cook 1 minute. Pour in tomatoes and season with 3/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper; simmer until tomatoes have thickened, about 10 minutes. Stir in crumbled feta.
  3. Gently crack eggs into skillet over tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until eggs are just set, 7 to 10 minutes. Sprinkle with cilantro and serve with hot sauce.

Chickpea and Artichoke Tagine

Servings: 4 to 6

Ingredients:
salt and pepper
8 oz (1 1/2 c) dried chickpeas, picked over and rinsed
2 TBS extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra for serving
1 onion, halved and sliced thin
4 (2-inch) strips lemon zest
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 TBS paprika
1/2 tsp ground cumin
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
2 TBS all-purpose flour
3 c vegetable broth
1 lb carrots, peeled and sliced 1/2 inch thick
1 (14.5 oz.) can diced tomatoes
9 oz. frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and patted dry
1/2 c pitted kalamata olives, halved
1/2 c minced fresh cilantro

Directions:
1. Dissolve 2 TBS salt in 4 quarts water. Add chickpeas and soak at room temperature for 8 to 24 hours. Drain and rinse chickpeas.
2. Heat 1 TBS oil in pressure-cooker pot over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in lemon zest, garlic, paprika, cumin, cinnamon, and cayenne and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in flour and cook for 1 minute. Whisk in broth, scraping up any browned bits and smoothing out any lumps. Stir in carrots, tomatoes, and their juice, and chickpeas.
3. Cook for 25 minutes: Lock lid in place and bring pot to high pressure over medium-high heat. As soon as indicator signals that pot has reached high pressure, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 25 minutes, adjusting heat as needed to maintain high pressure.
4. Quick-release pressure: Remove pot from heat. Quick-release pressure, then carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.
5. Heat remaining 1 TBS oil in 12-inch skillet over medium heat until shimmering. Add artichokes and cook until golden brown, 5 to 7 minutes. Discard lemon zest from stew. Stir in olives, cilantro, and artichokes and season with salt and pepper to taste. Drizzle individual portions with extra oil before serving.

Variations:
Chickpea Tagine with Cauliflower and Almonds
Omit artichokes. Add 1/2 head cauliflower, cored and cut into 1-inch florets, to finished tagine and simmer until tender, 10 to 12 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup chopped toasted almonds before serving.

Chickpea Tagine with Dried Apricots and Honey
Omit artichokes and substitute 1/2 cup pitted and halved green olives for kalamata olives. Add 1 cup chopped dried apricots and 2 TBS honey with olives.

Tips:
1. Soaking chickpeas in salt water the day before cooking them ensures that they cook through evenly and makes them less likely to burst open. Soaking also gives their skins a softer texture.
2. We build flavor by sauteing onions, garlic, and a few spices, and lemon zest. Use a vegetable peeler to remove the zest from the lemon in strips. avoiding the bitter white pith underneath. The zest perfumes the dish and can be easily removed before serving.
3. Since artichokes are delicate, we stir them in after cooking the chickpeas under pressure. To help bring out their flavor, we brown them first. Frozen artichokes brown more easily than canned because they are less waterlogged.

15-Bean Soup with Sausage

Ingredients:
salt and pepper
10 oz. (1 1/2 c) 15-bean soup mix, flavor packet discarded, beans picked over and rinsed
2 TBS vegetable oil
12 oz. hot or sweet Italian sausage
1 onion, chopped fine
1 carrot, peeled and chopped fine
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp minced fresh thyme or 1/4 tsp dried
4 c chicken broth
2 bay leaves
8 oz. Swiss chard, stemmed and chopped
1 large tomato, cored and chopped

Directions:
1. Dissolve 2 TBS salt in 4 quarts water. Add beans and soak at room temperature for 8 to 24 hours. Drain and rinse beans.
2. Heat 1 TBS oil in pressure-cooker pot over medium-high heat until just smoking. Brown sausage on all sides, about 2 minutes; transfer to plate.
3. Heat remaining 1 TBS oil in now-empty pot over medium heat until shimmering. Add onion and carrot and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Stir in garlic and thyme and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broth, bay leaves, and soaked beans, scraping up any browned bits. Add sausage and any accumulated juices to pot.
4. Cook for 25 minutes: Lock lid in place and bring pot to high pressure over medium-high heat. As soon as indicator signals that pot has reached high pressure, reduce heat to medium-low and cook for 25 minutes, adjusting heat as needed to maintain high pressure.
5. Quick-release pressure: Remove pot from heat. Quick-release pressure, then carefully remove lid, allowing steam to escape away from you.
6. Discard bay leaves. Transfer sausage to cutting board and slice 1/2 inch thick. Meanwhile, bring soup to simmer, stir in chard and tomato, and cook until chard is tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in sliced sausage, season with salt and pepper to taste, and serve.

Tip:
When cooking with greens like Swiss chard, collard greens, and kale, we often use only the leaves, and we add them to the pot to cook through briefly just before serving.
1. Cut away leafy green portion from either side of steam using chef’s knife.
2. Stack several leaves on top of one another and either slice leaves crosswise or chop into pieces (as specified in recipe). Using salad spinner, wash and dry leaves after they are cut.