Grilled Pineapple and Onion Salsa

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Makes: About 2 1/2 cups

Time: 20 minutes

Grilled fruit makes a fabulous base for salsa; its caramelized sweetness is offset perfectly by the tang of lime juice and the heat of chiles. Use this to dress a green salad, as a dip for tacos, or alongside grilled or broiled chicken or huevos rancheros. Recipe from How to Cook Everything.

1 pineapple, peeled, cored, and cut into thick rings (canned rings, drained of excess juices, are also okay)

1 large red onion, cut into thick slices

3 tablespoons olive oil

1 tablespoon minced fresh hot chile (like jalapeño or Thai), or to taste, or hot red pepper flakes or cayenne, to taste

1 stalk lemongrass, peeled, trimmed, and minced

2 tablespoons chopped fresh Thai basil or mint leaves

2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lime juice

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1. Heat a charcoal or gas grill fire to fairly low heat, and put the rack about 4 inches from the heat source. Brush the pineapple and onion slices with the olive oil; if you’re worried about the slices falling through the grate, thread them on soaked wooden skewers. Cook, turning once or twice, until soft and slightly charred, about 8 minutes total. Remove the slices as they finish cooking. When cool enough to handle, discard the skewers and chop into bite-sized chunks, saving as much of the juices as possible.

2. Put the pineapple and onions in a medium bowl with the chile, lemongrass, basil, and lime juice. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and stir to combine. Let sit for about 5 minutes, then taste and adjust the seasoning, adding more chile, lime, or salt as needed. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to an hour.

Grilled Apricot and Onion Salsa. If you can get good apricots—and that’s a big if—this is terrific; but it’s not bad with good dried apricots, soaked in water or wine to cover until soft: Substitute about 8 halved fresh or dried apricots for the pineapple, a tablespoon of minced fresh ginger for the lemongrass, and lemon for the lime juice.

Grilled Peach and Corn Salsa. A nice midsummer salsa: Replace the pineapple with 3 or 4 ripe peaches, halved, and use a tablespoon of minced fresh ginger instead of the lemongrass; add 1 or 2 cobs’ worth of corn on the cob, grilled or roasted and 2 chopped scallions. Use lemon or lime juice.

 

Posted in Produce, Vegan

My Grilling Kindle Single Now Only $.99 Until the End of Summer

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I know it’s not officially summer yet, but it sure feels like it. To that end (and for the sake of trying to get as many people outside grilling as possible) I just lowered the price of my new Kindle Single (Bittman’s Kitchen, What I Grill and Why) to 99 cents, where it will stay from now until the end of summer. Happy grilling!

Posted in Mark Bittman Books

Fire Up the Coals: I Just Released My Very First Kindle Single (on Grilling)

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I just released my first (and apparently the first) food-related Kindle single. It’s called Bittman’s Kitchen: What I Grill and Why, and it costs $2.99 (is it just me, or are “books” getting cheaper?). This one is a compilation of my very favorite grilling recipes, the ridiculously easy, remarkably delicious dishes that I cook over and over again (because I’m too lazy, and they’re too good). I’ve written short essays to go along with each recipe, and included some indispensable grilling tips like how to stock a griller’s pantry and how to master doneness (not necessarily a no-brainer). So polish those tongs, stock up on charcoal (or propane), and happy grilling!

 

 

 

Posted in Mark Bittman Books

Roasted or Grilled Asparagus

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Makes: 4 servings

Time: 30 minutes

Asparagus are terrific when blasted with high heat; if you haven’t had them browned, you’re in for a new treat. If you have a grill going, you should really try grilling them; thick spears, especially, are wonderful this way (thin ones are good too, but you have to be especially careful not to let them fall through the grill grates). If the grill is not on, roast them. They’re amazing this way, especially with butter. Recipe from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian.

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Posted in Produce, Recipes

Grilled or Broiled Chicken Kebabs

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Makes: 4 servings

Time: About 30 minutes, plus time to marinate

Well-seasoned grilled or broiled kebabs will make anyone a convert to dark-meat chicken. You can use chicken breasts here too, but watch them closely so they don’t overcook and dry out.

Other protein you can use: turkey thighs; pork or veal shoulder, steak, or loin; sturdy fish like swordfish or salmon. Recipe from How to Cook Everything.

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Posted in American, Recipes

Food Matters Cookbook: Sneak Preview Recipe

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Recipe from The Food Matters Cookbook. Pre-order the book today or pick up a copy when it’s released on September 21st.

Grilled Turkey Hash with Red Wine Glaze

Makes: 4 servings        

Time: About 1 hour        

Potatoes and turkey are a good classic combo any time of the year, and this rich hash is a lot easier to prepare than Thanksgiving dinner. With the quick and full-flavored red wine glaze, it’s more interesting too. And if it’s not grilling season, you can always broil the turkey or use leftovers instead.

1 cup red wine

2 garlic cloves, crushed

3 sprigs fresh thyme, or 1 teaspoon dried

4 large all-purpose potatoes (like Yukon Gold), peeled and cut lengthwise into 1⁄2-inch slices

1 turkey thigh (about 1 pound)

1 red onion, halved

Olive oil as needed

Salt and black pepper

1 ⁄4 cup chopped fresh parsley, for garnish

1. Put the wine, garlic, and thyme in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring the mixture to a boil, then adjust the heat so that it bubbles gently. Cook until the wine is reduced to a syrup, 15 to 20 minutes.

2. Meanwhile, prepare a grill to medium-high heat and put the rack about 4 inches from the fire; keep one part of the grill fairly cool for indirect cooking.

3. Drizzle the potatoes, turkey, and onion with oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Put everything on the cool side of the grill with the turkey skin side up. Cover the grill and cook, turning the pieces once or twice, until the potatoes are tender and the turkey is no longer pink, 25 to 30 minutes. Uncover the grill and move the potatoes and onion so they stay warm but don’t burn. Put the turkey over the hotter part of the fire and grill, turning occasionally, until it is browned on both sides and cooked through, 10 to 15 minutes more. (You can prepare everything up to this point a day ahead of time; just gently reheat the vegetables, turkey, and red wine glaze before assembling.)

4. Pull the turkey meat off the bone and roughly chop the potatoes and onion. Toss everything with the red wine syrup and chopped parsley. Serve hot or at room temperature.

Roasted Turkey Hash with Red Wine Glaze. Use sweet potatoes instead of Yukon Gold, and instead of preparing a grill, heat the oven to 375°F. Cut the potatoes and onion into cubes. Follow the recipe through Step 1. In Step 3 put the vegetables and turkey in a large roasting pan, drizzle with the oil, and season with salt and pepper. Roast, turning occasionally, until the turkey and vegetables are browned and cooked through, 45 to 50 minutes. Pick up the recipe again at Step 4.  

 

Posted in American, Behind The Scenes

Sunday (or Monday) Supper: Grilled or Broiled Leg of Lamb

Start with my Grilled Lebanese Flatbread from this week’s Minimalist, add grilled or broiled leg of lamb and a minty yogurt sauce, and you’ve got one seriously good Sunday (or Labor Day) Supper. Adapted from How to Cook Everything.

Grilled or Broiled Butterflied Leg of Lamb

Makess: At least 6 servings

Time: About 40 minutes

There’s really little point in grilling a bone-in leg of lamb, especially since butterflied leg is now often sold in supermarkets. It’s not cheap, but it’s not that expensive either, and it’s delicious, tender, and easy to cook. Even the uneven thickness is an asset: Cook the thickest parts to rare and you also get meat that is cooked to medium, which is still quite moist and tender, so everyone’s happy.

One to 3- to 4-pound butterflied leg of lamb

1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1 tablespoon fresh rosemary leaves or 2 teaspoons dried rosemary

2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves or 1 teaspoon dried thyme

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Minced fresh parsley leaves for garnish

Lemon wedges for serving

1. Heat a charcoal or gas grill or the broiler until quite hot and put the rack at least 4 inches from the heat source. (Delay this step until you’re just about ready to cook if you choose to marinate the meat.) Trim the lamb of any excess fat. Mix together the olive oil, garlic, rosemary, thyme, and some salt and pepper; rub this mixture well into the lamb, being sure to get some into all the crevices. If you have the time, let the lamb sit for at least an hour (refrigerate if it will be much longer).

2. Grill or broil the meat (best done in a roasting pan with a rack) until it is nicely browned, even a little charred, on both sides, about 20 to 30 minutes; the internal temperature at the thickest part will be about 125°F; this will give you some lamb that is quite rare and some that is nearly well done. Let rest for 5 minutes before slicing thinly, as you would a thick steak. Garnish and serve with lemon wedges.

 

Minty Yogurt Sauce

Makes: 1 cup

Time: 3 minutes

1 cup yogurt, preferably whole milk

1 teaspoon minced garlic

1/4 chopped fresh mint

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Freshly squeezed lemon juice if necessary

1. Combine the yogurt with the garlic, mint, a pinch of salt, and a grinding or two of pepper. Taste and adjust the seasoning, adding some lemon juice if necessary.

2. Serve immediately or refrigerate for up to a few hours; bring back to near room temperature before serving.

 

 

Posted in Recipes

On Forgetting How to Cook, Part I

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Anything you learn, you can forget, right? That’s how I figure it.  

I used to grill probably 100, 150 nights a year (I never counted, but that seems about right). I lived in Connecticut, which is not the ideal grilling location, but because I came from New York, where grilling is as illegal as right turns on red, to me it was so exotic that once the opportunity became an unlimited one, I took full advantage of it. One of the first food stories I wrote, back in the early 80s, was about grilling during winter. I had a tiny second floor porch, and I was out there every chance I got, almost regardless of the weather.  

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Posted in American

Sunday Supper: 4th of July Menu

In honor of the long holiday weekend it seems only appropriate to offer up more than the usual Sunday dish–so here you go: a few ideas for a classic 4th of July celebration. All adapted from How to Cook Everything.

No-Work Smoked Pork Shoulder or Spareribs

Makes: 6 to 8 servings

Time: About 4 hours, largely unattended

A gas grill works best here (though an oven will do for the first variation). You’ll be amazed by the ease of this low-and-slow technique and downright shocked at the result: The meat can be served straight off the grill, with no more than a squeeze of lime and a few drops of Tabasco, or with any salsa or chutney. Or your can refrigerate the whole thing, slice the shoulder or cut between the ribs, and put it back on the grill—this time over direct heat—to add a crisp steaklike char over the super-tender insides. Continue reading

Posted in American, Recipes

This Week’s Minimalist: 101 Things to Grill

Need grilling ideas? See today’s Mini, just in time for the Fourth; there are 101. Let us know how they go, and happy grilling.

Posted in American