This earthy, tangy main dish shares a sauce similar to my Pomegranate Sriracha Shrimp, but the tofu, soy sauce, and vegetables turn it into something distinctively delicious. Tofu is typically deep-fried for dishes like this one, but panfrying is a healthier way to inject richness and character. For texture, complexity, and color, I add mushroom and mild-tasting chiles. Anaheims are my go-to but during the warmer months when chiles are in season, I love to use varieties such as Hatch and Corno di Toro. In a major pinch, half a large bell pepper will do.
Italian sausage and white bean braise is a super-easy start-up variation on meatballs. The key is to buy good-quality pork and fennel sausages, either at your local butcher or the supermarket.
Smothered—or choked—chicken is made using the age-old technique of slow cooking. The latter name comes from the actual act of wringing a bird’s neck and the former from smothering the bird slowly in a heavy-bottomed pot with onions, celery, and bell pepper. You can add garlic, if you like, or if you want heat, add fresh or dried hot peppers. Add fresh or dried savory, marjoram, thyme, or any herbs you like to enhance the flavor, or try it with rosemary and potatoes. Throw in one or two tomatoes. The options are endless. Have patience with this meal—it will take nearly two hours to make, but it’s worth the wait.
Shrimp spaghetti is to bayou kids what spaghetti and meatballs is to kids in the rest of the United States. This was my son Lucien’s favorite meal, which he would eat for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It’s a near perfect meal—simple, sweet, perfectly balanced—and it’ll feed a big family or a crowd of friends. The recipe draws from the Creole cooking technique of smothering tomatoes long and slow. This version is made with store-bought sauce, but you can certainly make your own tomato sauce and cook it down in the same manner. Homemade tomato sauce tends to be thinner, so you might have to thicken it a bit with tomato paste to get the right consistency.
Cheesy, tangy and oh-so-comforting, these stuffed potatoes are a lunch worth waiting for. I often bake the potatoes the evening before, when I already have the oven on for my evening meal, and allow them to cool overnight, ready to put together in no time for lunch. Alternatively, you could let your slow cooker do the first bake. Opt for vegan cream cheese rather than vegan hard cheese to get a creamier, more buttery texture.
These fluffy pieces of shredded tofu are like soft, tiny dumplings and cook up in no time at all. Here, ground chicken gives them a meaty depth and a caramelized flavor while edamame adds texture and a vegetable to the mix. If you want to make this vegetarian, leave out the meat, and instead sauté 4 ounces of chopped fresh shiitake or cremini mushrooms with the scallions and ginger. Make sure to get the shiitakes nice and golden; you need the extra flavor that caramelization provides. Serve this by itself or with a simple salad of baby spinach dressed with a little sesame oil, salt, and lime juice.
You can easily ask a butcher to butterfly the chicken for you, but it isn’t difficult to do at home and can be curiously pleasurable. Just sit the chicken, breast-side down, on a board and press down a little until you hear a gratifying crunch. With a good pair of kitchen scissors or poultry shears, cut along each side of the backbone. Remove the backbone, then flip the chicken over and press down on the breast, to flatten it a little. The marinade infuses the chicken overnight with a deep and musky saltiness, but not spikily so; intense though miso most definitely is, it works subtly, bringing its caramelly saltiness to the meat.
Chef Omar Allibhoy's friends and family say his is one of the very best seafood paellas they have tasted. The intensity of flavour in the stock you make will be the most important thing, as well as how wide your paella pan is. Believe it or not, it makes all the difference.
Who doesn’t like slow-cooked, soft pork belly? And if, to something this scrumptious, you add the Mojo Dulce sauce that hundreds of customers in my tapas bars have asked me to bottle and sell, then I think we have a winner.
For this unusual sauced, or “dipped,” fried chicken, we started by brining chicken parts in a solution of salt, sugar, and water. We coated the chicken pieces in a seasoned flour mixture and let them sit in the refrigerator to ensure that the coating adhered. We then deep-fried them in 350-degree peanut oil until the coating was crispy. For the sauce, we combined Texas Pete Original Hot Sauce (a North Carolina specialty) with Worcestershire sauce, oil, molasses (to balance out the heat), and cider vinegar. We let the chicken cool for 10 minutes (to let steam escape) and then spooned the tangy-spicy sauce over top, which proved to be easier and less messy than dipping. The coating absorbed the lip-tingling sauce and still retained its crispy, craggy texture.