Posts Tagged ‘5-star’

Boeuf Bourguignon

It won’t be terribly surprising that every time I or one of my sous chefs was pronouncing the name of this dish, we channeled Meryl Streep’s uncanny portrayal of Julia Child. And I sheepishly admit it’s fairly impossible not to hear Julia’s resonant voice guiding you through every step of this magnificent classic recipe!

This was our first foray into “Childhood” ““ that is, the gastronomic stratosphere to which Julia Child brought us. Though I was inspired to do this cooking blog by the movie Julie & Julia last summer, I have intentionally resisted the clichè of cooking from the tome that put the brilliant Julia indelibly on the culinary landscape and the dreadful Julie on the silver…

Caesar Salad

If my dad was famous with us kids for his French Toast, he is downright legendary among his friends for his Caesar Salad. If he’s ever had you over for dinner, there’s just shy of a 99% chance you’ve eaten romaine leaves coated with his garlic-y, anchovy-esque, parmesan-ified dressing. He keeps the recipe in his head, and it’s a rare Saturday afternoon that you don’t find him in the kitchen with his makeshift towel apron tucked around his waist, washing lettuce leaves and chopping garlic in preparation for that evening’s dinner company.

That said, I have a rather startling admission to make: I don’t particularly like lettuce. I mean, it’s widely known that I find canned tuna fish…

Andrea’s Potato Latkes

Latkes, latkes, I love latkes

NOT a little but a lot of

Latkes, latkes, I love latkes

NOT a little but a lot…

Of latkes

Okay, now that we’ve gotten my favorite preschool Hanukkah song out of my head, it’s time to get down to the business of potato latkes!

Let’s be honest. Like all ethnic food, latkes are personal. You usually like what you grew up with, whether it was heavy, soft potato pancakes or thin, crispy ones. You either like onions in ′em or you don’t. You’re of matzoh meal lineage or flour lineage.

My mom loved ′em crunchy, but I remember hers coming out fairly mushy, and once I developed my own recipe for them, she was more…

Okay, so it’s not a Barefoot recipe, but the whole family insisted I share their raves about this enchanting Italian masterpiece that we savored a couple of weekends ago.

Way back when ““ on our honeymoon actually ““ Dave and I had a scrumptious meal at a Northern Italian restaurant in St. Thomas called Romano’s (woo-hoo…I just checked and it’s still there!), featuring New Jersey-native chef-owner Tony Romano’s outstanding osso bucco. I had never before eaten osso bucco, with its braised veal shanks melting into a rich sauce, atop perfect, glistening saffron risotto, with a sprinkling of bright gremolata. I instantly learned the ambrosial joy that a marrow spoon can bring! The dish was positively beguiling,…

Noodle Kugel

Kugel is like any other Jewish dish — you swear by the style that your bubbe made, and any variation of that is farkakte (literally “becrapped”). For me, raisins in kugel is farkakte. Cottage cheese, ricotta cheese or anything other than Philly cream cheese? Farkakte. No crunchy corn flake topping? Farkakte. Barefoot Contessa kugel? Farkakte!

The biggest variation between my mom’s and Nana’s versions of our family recipe was the use of vanilla extract in the batter. Nana insisted it should be in there; Mom, not so much. I happen to like vanilla so I use it, and I also sometimes use brown sugar in the crunchy topping. Other than that, our original recipe is unchanged.

I got kugel-ed…

Meeeee luvvvvvv cooooookiessss!

My super-duper sleuthing has uncovered the fact that Eli Zabar’s shortbread recipe is published over and over again throughout the Barefoot library in different variations. Shortbread hearts, linzer cookies, shortbread cookies with dragés…it’s all the same shortbread.

Granted it’s just four ingredients and it’s yummy, but I like making these because there are few things more fun than using cookie cutters! Takes me back to little cans of Play-Doh (“Doh!” ““ how Homer Simpsonian!), a tiny rolling pin and plastic cookie cutters. I haven’t made these cookies in ages, and I was so happy to find my worn bag of steel cutters in different shapes and sizes. (My favorite cutters? Four copper ones in…

Barefoot Contessa Parmesan Chicken

A few very cool things have happened as a result of this Barefoot blog:

• I’ve gotten to spend some time in the kitchen teaching each of my boys a bit about cooking

• I’ve gotten more disciplined about planning meals in advance so dinner isn’t always a last-minute nightmare

• I’ve gotten to write every day!

• I’ve gotten to work on improving my pitiful photography skills

• I’ve gotten a HUGE compliment from Eli Zabar, who tasted my brownies and proclaimed them even better than Ina’s originals (he said it had to be the chocolate, and he was actually going to…

It’s no wonder my boys adore lemonade. Every time I was pregnant, I drank gallons and gallons of the stuff ““ and it had to be homemade. None of that powdered junk or frozen concentrate. In fact, the first hint I had that I was pregnant with the twins was a sudden craving for lemonade (and full-sour pickles from Carnegie Deli!).

Lemonade makes us all smile, and we even make it from time to time in the cold of winter as a cheerful reminder of warmer, sunnier days. The happy color and the sweet-tart flavor are like liquid sunshine, and we couldn’t think of a better way to end this fantastic summer than by sharing a…

Beatty’s Chocolate Cake

Sixteen years ago today I ate chocolate cake. It was a beautiful three-tiered dark chocolate cake with chocolate ganache filling and white fondant, and I joyfully shared it with 160 people. It was our wedding cake!

There was likely a fair share of dubious guests toasting with us that Sunday evening and dancing into the wee hours of Labor Day. After all, Dave and I had met on a blind date, gotten engaged seven weeks later, and were married within five months. (And no, our first baby was still almost a year-and-a-half off…I know what you were thinking!) But as they say, when it’s right, sometimes you just know it instantly. After every blind date, my grandmother would…

Aw, c’mon now, you didn’t honestly think we were going to let the whole summer go by without making the quintessential Barefoot recipe, did you?

These are dessert nirvana ““ fluffy, buttery, vanilla-y cupcakes topped with luxurious cream cheese frosting and an ethereal sprinkling of coconut. A tiered cake stand of them is nothing less than a dazzling showstopper. Even a pie guy like Dave admits these are as scrumptious as they are breathtaking.

A perennial family favorite, I’ve made these cupcakes many times over the years, and they always come out a little differently, depending on the freshness of the baking powder and the particular oven. This time the stars were aligned and the gods were…