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Paella

Making Paella is quite the trick. Making authentic paella is even harder. My mission this week was to make a simple, yet flavorful paella for our Spanish Global Table. Something easy enough for a Monday, but special enough for a Friday. One that would be rather… well… business in front, party in the back. Or maybe not. Friends, I did my research. In fact, I spent a lot of time reading mediocre online reviews of what should have been amazing paella recipes. These recipes were crafted by chefs and superstars yet, without fail, half of the commenters complained of the paellas being bland, while the other half loved the bold flavors. I was mystified, until I happened upon this comment: “If you’re going to use saffron, then use it.” The recipe had, like so many, called for a “pinch” of saffron. After speaking with friends, we agreed that a “pinch” of saffron might lead someone to add three meager strands of saffron.. whereas another might grab a hefty pinch more equitable to a teaspoon (think of Emeril Lagasse’s “BAM” style). …

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Pork braised in Milk & Fresh Herbs | Maiale al Latte

It’s fun to let a recipe go “wrong” on purpose. Maiale al Latte is one of those dishes: pork braised in milk for hours, until the milk gives way to tender, nutty, herb flavored curds. Some will tell you this “curdled milk” is a mistake. I’m here to tell you what everyone in San Marino and Italy already know – this is homemade cheese ripe for the snacking, an epic byproduct of an already amazingly tender roast, soaked with sage and rosemary, garlic and bay leaves, milk and wine. Outrageous. Once strained out of the sauce, I’ve read accounts of the curds being spread on toast. What a pleasure that would be. But let’s back up a moment. This isn’t about cheese. That’s just the cherry on top. This is really about a braised, tender pork shoulder… fit for any gathering of happy friends. The Sanmarinese and Italians love milk-braised pork. And today, we’re about to see why. Let’s dive in, shall we? Serves 10-12 Ingredients: 1/4 cup olive oil 5 lb boneless pork shoulder, a.k.a. pork butt (no …

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Ginger n’ Spice Tomato Sauce | Rougaille

If there is one recipe that reflects the Mauritian potluck of global flavors, this is it. Rougaille. Let’s take a walk through the flavors of this unusual sauce – I have a feeling you just might make friends. First, imagine a simple, homemade tomato sauce. The deep red goodness smells sweet and fresh. This sauce can be found in homes all across the world. Tomatoes, onion, garlic. Standard fare. Until you take a bite. Then you realize, this is more complex than you could have ever known. This “rougaille” is … unusual. First, there’s a hint of the French influence – a smattering of parsley, thyme, and even the optional splash of white wine. Then there’s the African influence – calling for hot chili peppers – as much as you can stand. Finally, the flavors of India and remote parts of Asia are represented with bold layers of ginger and cilantro. Outrageous and fine. Serves 2-4 Ingredients 1 small onion, diced 3 cloves garlic, crushed or grated 1 tsp fresh, grated ginger hot chili peppers, …

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Pork Roast with Boozy Prunes

Remember the Sunday afternoon roast? How, as it slowly sizzled and crackled in the oven, the most wonderful smell crept throughout the house until there was nowhere to hide, and you were so hungry you almost couldn’t stand it? Eventually, playing outside was the only possible distraction. Even then the smell snuck out, through cracks in the wall, enticing you until you mysteriously found yourself infront of mom, dad, grandma, grandpa, just about anyone who would listen, asking “Is it ready yet?” … only to find yourself shooed back outside again for another agonizing half hour. As you know, waiting was always worth it. In the spirit of those wonderful Sundays, I bring you a Lithuanian-inspired Pork Roast. This moist platter of deliciousness features the regionally adored prune and the most popular meat in the country – pork. The best part about this roast is splashing the prunes with plenty of white wine. The sweet, dried fruit takes on a universe of flavor… and looks like a shimmering, liquid sky. Say hello to happiness. Recipe inspired …

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French Onion Soup | Teardrop Onion Soup

Serves 4 Do you need a good cry? Today is the day. Paris can handle your tears. Trust me, I know. All you have to do is make a pot of French Onion Soup. By the time you slurp your last sip, and crunch on the last of the cheesy crouton, you will be renewed. After my brother died everything hurt. The thing was, as bad as it felt, I didn’t really know how bad I was hurting. I tried to ignore it. To keep going. I didn’t want to look my grief in the face. It was an ugly, unwieldy monster. If I allowed myself feel the pain and actually let the tears out, I felt weak. On my brother’s birthday, the first one that came up after he died, I decided to wear all black. I was going to face the pain. I hadn’t even made it half way down the stairs when my foster mom called up to me. “Little girls don’t wear all black. Go change your clothes.” She had the thankless job …

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Vanilla-Shallot Dipping Butter

makes 1/2 cup This rich dipping butter has warm vanilla undertones, mellow onion/garlic flavor from the shallot, and a bright acid note from the white wine. Recipe inspired by the New York Times. Ingredients: 1 stick (8 Tbsp) butter 1 shallot, minced (about 1/4 cup) 1/3 cup white wine 1/2 vanilla bean, split salt pepper Serve with Boiled Lobster Method: Melt a tab or two of butter over medium heat. Add shallots and cook. Shallots are incredible. I don’t think I’ve used one in 5 years. Thank goodness this recipe came along, to knock me to my senses! Once the shallot is soft and translucent, add white wine. Take a sip, if you have some extra. Simmer for several minutes, until almost all the liquid evaporates. Then, whisk in the rest of the butter. And add the scrapings of half a vanilla pod. Fresh vanilla scrapings take this dipping butter over the edge, into the realm of the divine. A little salt and pepper seals the deal. At this point many smart people – like the people …

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Warm Spinach and Mushroom Salad

Serves 4 Wild mushrooms give this spinach salad Andorran appeal. The crunch of slivered almonds and the sweet of the golden raisins add another dimension. Ingredients: 12 oz assorted mushrooms (Iused 4 oz French Horn Mushrooms; 8 oz Oyster Mushrooms) 2 cloves garlic, thinly sliced 3 Tbsp olive oil, plus 1 Tbsp for the last step 1/4 cup white wine 1/4 cup raisins 1/2 lb baby spinach 1/4 cup slivered almonds salt, pepper Method: 1. In a large skillet over medium high, saute mushrooms in 3 Tbsp olive oil until reduced and golden brown. Add garlic. Saute a few more minutes, until fragrant. Add raisins. Deglaze with white wine. 2. Add spinach and turn off heat. Toss for a few minutes to wilt. Transfer to serving bowl. Toss with slivered almonds, 1 Tbsp olive oil, salt and pepper. Votes: 0 Rating: 0 You: Rate this recipe! Print Recipe Wild mushrooms give this spinach salad Andorran appeal. The crunch of slivered almonds and the sweet of the golden raisins add another dimension.Warm Spinach and Mushroom Salad CourseSides & Salads LifestyleGluten-Free, Quick, Vegan, Vegetarian Food TypeSasha’s …

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