After spending over a year in Napa to go to culinary school and work in restaurant kitchens, I am finally back home and that means more recipes for The Original Dish! While I figure out what step to take next for my career in Chicago, I’m taking full advantage of having lots of time to cook….and eat. And even better, my favorite season to be in the kitchen is in full swing. I’ll be writing warm, cozy, festive recipes all season long. Starting with this parsnip soup.
It’s been a goal of mine for awhile to start making more dishes with tuna. I never ate much fish when I was younger, and by the time I began to love it, tuna was always on the back burner. Sure it’s usually in sushi (which I LOVE and need to try making myself), but I have just finally realized the beauty of a perfectly seared, medium rare tuna steak.
Simplicity is key. But complexity is intriguing. I would say this salad incorporates both of these elements. And the result?…a beautiful winter salad that’s easy to make, yet leaves you wanting more with each bite.
Snow is finally falling, the temperature is dropping, January hibernation is kicking in and all of this calls for one thing…soup! My creamy coconut soup was perfect for summer, butternut squash soup for the fall, but now I wanted a wintery soup to keep me warm on these bitterly cold nights. French onion soup has always been my absolute favorite. The deeply flavored soup with bread soaking into it and cheese melting on top is irresistible. So to create some comfort this winter, I developed my own spin on the classic dish.
When I first started making cranberry sauce for Thanksgiving, I became addicted to it. It’s such a simple process (I basically just make a cranberry jam), and it tastes good on everything around the holidays. It’s sweet but tart and has the deliciously deep taste of cranberry. So I’m always trying to incorporate it into other dishes instead of just eating it as a turkey condiment. And since I like to sweeten a lot of my vinaigrettes with honey, I thought why not use a little cranberry sauce instead.
What’s better than Thanksgiving dinner? Leftovers! I’ve turned stuffing into meatballs, mashed potatoes into potato cakes, and cranberry sauce into dessert. But sometimes all you need is a good sandwich. A turkey sandwich is probably the easiest post-Thanksgiving meal to quickly whip up. And after putting in all of the effort to cook the bird the day before, you want to extend its eating life as far as possible. Piling it high on a sandwich is just the way to do it!
It’s that time of year again when I cannot contain my excitement for cozying up on the couch with a big bowl of soup. Cold weather and soup go hand in hand, especially when the soup contains an explosion of autumn flavors. While chunky stews are great and definitely serve that “comfort food” purpose, there’s nothing better than a smooth and silky soup to warm you up when the crisp November air settles in.
What makes or breaks a salad for me is the dressing. It sets the overall tone of every bite. Toppings are important, too, but you may only get a couple bites of each throughout the course of enjoying your salad. The dressing coats every single bite, giving the lettuce its much needed flavor boost. That’s why when coming up with this salad recipe, I gave extra attention to the dressing, a black garlic & orange vinaigrette.
Salads are always a lot of fun to play around with and see what you create. Lettuce is the perfect vehicle to add absolutely whatever you want to it. I usually keep salads light, adding lots of fresh vegetables, herbs, and maybe some sort of protein. I took a slightly different approach when coming up with this salad, making it as indulgent as possible. And trust me, it was worth it.
Soups are a great vehicle for experimenting with new flavors. I am a big fan of eating soup year round, not just in the cold, wintery months. While it doesn’t get much better than cozying up with a hot, steamy bowl of soup in the middle of winter, a light and fresh “summery” soup can be just as satisfying. I include tropical ingredients in this creamy soup to create the perfect balance of freshness and comfort.