This is a variation of an hors d’oeuvres that first appeared (for me) in Martha Stewart’s book, Entertaining. There are so many ways to change up the recipe, by using different cheeses, nuts and even fruits. Read more
An early childhood memory is breakfast at my paternal grandmother’s house after my sister and I had a sleep-over there: toast with peanut butter and apricot jam. My mother traditionally made this jam, and here I have used her recipe, adding the variation of the apricot kernel for flavour, suggested by Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer in Canal House Cooking, Volume No. 4. Read more
This recipe for Chicken Marbella has been kicking around since The Silver Palate Cookbook first came out in 1979. I have countless friends who come back to this chicken dish time and time again because of its flavour, the convenience of making it ahead of time and the fact that it can be easily adjusted to serve a small or large gathering. Read more
For this occasion I followed Marcus Samuelsson’s recipe in “The Soul of a New Cuisine” but I divided it in half. I found the result to be flavourful, but the texture was pasty. Below is my revised recipe.
1 c. dried chickpeas, soaked in cold water for 8 hours or overnight
1 carrot, peeled and cut in half
1 small onion, cut in half
2 garlic cloves, peeled
1 eggplant, cut lengthwise in half
2 T. olive oil
1 Thai red chili, cut in half, seeds and ribs removed
1 t. ground cumin
1/2 c. plain yogurt, or to taste
salt, pepper and lemon juice, to taste
1-2 t. harissa, optional (recipe below)
Makes approximately 1 1/2 cups
Combine soaked chickpeas, carrot and onion in a medium saucepan, add 2 cups water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until the chickpeas or very tender, about 1 1/2 hours. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the cooking liquid.
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 300ºF. Toss the garlic and eggplant with 2 T. oil and arrange on a roasting pan, eggplant cut side down, and roast for 40 minutes. Add the chili to the roasting pan, cut side down, and roast for another 10 minutes. Set aside until cool enough to handle.
Scoop the flesh from the eggplant and transfer to a blender. Add the roasted garlic and chili, chickpeas, cumin, 1 T. olive oil and about 2 T. of cooking liquid. Purée, adding enough yogurt and more of the cooking liquid, if needed, to reach a light, creamy consistency. Adjust seasoning with salt, pepper, lemon juice and harissa. The dip will keep several days in the refrigerator, but is best served at room temperature.
3/4 c. olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 t. caraway seeds
1 c. mild chili powder
1 T. ground coriander
1 t. salt
2 T. chopped mint
Heat the oil in a small sauté pan over medium heat. When the oil shimmers, add the garlic and sauté until golden, about 4 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Add the caraway seeds, chili powder, salt and mint and stir to combine. Let cool. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 weeks. Harissa can also be used as an accompaniment to couscous or as a flavouring for soups and stews.