Friday, May 20, 2016

Still Cooking

I haven't been posting lately, but I have been cooking, although not for any extravaganza.

We had a friend for a simple Sunday meal, and I made the Roasted Chicken Provençal from The New York Times, which has become a go-to one-hour meal for me and, apprarently, thousands of others (this is one of the Times' most popular dishes of 2015). I stick pretty closely to the recipe but add halved fingerling or baby Yukon gold potatoes to the pan while roasting. Why not get the starch course done at the same time?

Roasted Chicken Provençal
We stayed with friends in Madison, Wisconsin, and I contributed two dishes to our wonderful meal:

First, Roast Chicken with Sumac, Za'Atar and Lemon, from Ottolenghi: The Cookbook, the breakthrough book that got me excited about Middle Eastern food. This doesn't look like much from the photo, but trust me, that's the photographer's (my) fault and not the cook's (mine). This and all of Ottolenghi's books are worth the space on your shelves.

Chicken with Sumac, Za'atar and Lemon
Also, Clotilde Dussoulier's easy and always-fabulous Flourless Orange and Ginger Cake, made by boiling oranges, mandarins or clementines for a couple of hours and then pureeing the whole fruits in a food processor to serve as cake filling. (Perfect for your gluten-free friends.)

Orange and Ginger Cake
More recently, confronted with magnificent local asparagus at my nearby farmers' market, I made Dorie Greenspan's Cheesy Rice with Asparagus, a risotto-like celebration of this seasonal marvel.

Cheesy Rice with asparagus
Speaking of seasonal asparagus, it is the beginning of that wonderful 6-month period where the local markets furnish us with great and inspiring ingredients, starting with ramps last month and running through asparagus, greens, corn, tomatoes, berries, melons and stone fruit. Time to cook and savor simple things that showcase the natural flavors that our soil give us. I will spend a month of that time in France, where they'll see us and raise us one.

Bobby Jay

1 comment:

Susan said...

I've also made the NYT Chicken Provencal recipe a number of times; now I will add the potatoes as well! Love this recipe and CJ liked it too. I added a lot more garlic than the recipe called for,which is probably why he liked it so much. Tons of flavor and so easy to make. I only use chicken thighs for mine.