If you are a lover of classic American chowders, like Boston clam chowder, you will love this rich sumptuous Manhattan style.
This dish is so much fun, and kid approved in our home. These jumbo pasta shells are stuffed with tasty Italian sausage and three of our favorite Italian cheeses… ricotta, parmesan, and mozzarella.
When we think of the Oktoberfest, we always think of Smoked Kielbasa, seared on the grill and then simmered in sauerkraut with caraway seeds. This is Grandmother approved as the real deal. On a hot buttered bun with mayo and/or mustard it is umami bombi. This feast causes a kind of crazy desire in the crowd for more… until food coma ensues. If the weather at your home is getting colder, rainy, blustery, snowy or just kind of lacking any sunny stuff… this is the ultimate comfort food. If you want to enjoy an October feast at home, this one is so much fun. Don’t forget the beer! Enjoy! Ingredients… 2 pounds Kielbasa sausage (grilled or broiled until charred)2 pounds sauerkraut (purchased in a glass jar or from a deli)1 pound Yukon Gold potatoes (steamed or boiled until just slightly tender)1 tablespoon caraway seeds (slightly ground)1 tablespoon light brown sugar1 teaspoon salt1 teaspoon black pepper2 ounces unsalted butter Cooking… Steam or boil the potatoes until just slightly tender, cut into quarters and set aside. Grill or broil the Kielbasa sausages until charred and juicy, cut into halves or thirds and set aside. In a stockpot or large pan, on medium heat, simmer the sauerkraut until it just begins to bubble. (Please don’t drain or rinse the liquids that come with the sauerkraut, they are wonderfully tart and packed with nourishing probiotics and umami flavors.) Add the caraway seeds, brown sugar, salt, black pepper, butter, potatoes and the Kielbasa sausages. Simmer on low heat for at least 20 minutes, we prefer to simmer for a least an hour. This is how Grandma makes this legendary meal. She approves!
This bad boy is not your momma’s Sloppy Joe’s… no ketchup, yellow mustard or chili powder. This version is super umami, with wonderful complex flavors and by far the best one we’ve ever tasted.
Every once in a while we like to look back at some of our favorite savory homemade pizzas and share them. We love homemade pizza, it brings the family together like no other meal!
For us, this the most savory of all our chowders… combining caramelized salmon with the fresh corn cob kernels. The smoky burnt bits of the salmon are crazy good with the blistered cherry tomatoes and the intensely fruity and earthy flavors of the mushrooms… all in a creamy sherry and tarragon sauce.
Shakshuka isn’t just for breakfast anymore! This fabulous Middle Eastern feast is also a wonderful stuffing for grape leaves. Give it a whirl, these are the best stuffed peppers we ever had!
For us, the intensely fruity and haunting flavors of this wild mushroom called Chanterelle, which we hunt for in the mountains, combines magically with the fresh corn cob kernels and the smoked bacon umami flavors. And then we add the sweet briny rich crab taste of the sea, all in a creamy Sherry and Tarragon herb broth. It’s one of the most savory and umami packed chowders we’ve ever made.
These crunchy juicy sweet red bell peppers were stuffed with lots of savory stuff like spinach seared in tons of garlic and Italian olive oil, smoked sausages, lots of feta cheese along with two other cheeses like Pecorino Romano grated inside with smoked Provolone or Gruyere on top, which got all melty and aromatic, held together with our own spiced Jasmine rice… all made really creamy with roasted red pepper and tomato sauce. They are crazy tasty awesome wonderful.
The first time I had this classic Italian-American delight was in New York at the Feast of San Gennaro on Mulberry Street in Little Italy. It was a savory revelation, an umami bomb inside some awesome hot toasted and buttered buns. I was hooked for life. And this is that recipe, Italian grandmother approved!
Beginning in the late 1800s, the commercial fishing fleet out of San Francisco’s North Beach and Fisherman’s Wharf was dominated by Italian fisherman, usually from the port city of Genoa. But some boats were manned by a mix of fisherman from many other nations. Working side by side with the Italians were Portuguese from Lisbon, Mexicans from Baja, Spaniards from Barcelona, Frenchmen from Marseille, Chinese fisherman who had been in the city for many years fishing for shrimp, and there were even some highly skilled long range seafarers from Basque. Cioppino became so popular among the families in the bay area that it began to be served as street food for laborers along the wharf and by 1906, after the devastating earthquake, it was served in several restaurants in town. It is a classic San Francisco feast and always eaten with the wildly popular local crusty sourdough bread.
I grew up in a time and a place where the possibility of experiencing exotic or umami infused cuisine was just about zero. The little town in Illinois I come from had 500 residents, a couple of coffee shops, one family restaurant specializing in deep fried food, and was more than an hour from the closest big city. But when I still a little kid, I began to realize with a kind of bewilderment, that other people didn’t seem to be amazed by food quite the way that I was.