foodporn

Spicy Ramen Noodles with Shrimp and Seared Sausages

Lately we’ve been simply addicted to this Umami Bombi little Ramen feast, simmered in our own chicken bone broth with Vietnamese fish sauce and tons of ginger and garlic and lots of Vietnamese flavors, with the addition of seared smoked Andouille sausage, Red Argentinian shrimp (which taste like lobster) and a couple creamy soft boiled eggs. 

Shakshuka with Feta

Of all the fabulous dishes from the Middle East, this is one of our absolute favorites. Packed with exotic spices and savory flavors, it makes a perfect brunch on weekends and a fun breakfast for the whole family.

Chicken Roulade (Roll) in Mushroom & Thyme Cream Sauce with Dijon Mustard

This is the Chicken Roulade of our dreams, the one we first experienced in Florence and the hill towns of Tuscany… the extravagant chicken roll that incorporates every savory ingredient we ever wanted to include. Each roll is packed with so many layers of delicious that they must be tied together with cord, like culinary presents from the Umami Gods. Ingredients… First, air chilled free range chicken thighs pounded thin. Then a very thin layer of aged Prosciutto ham from Italy for that crazy umami ham vibe. Then the thin layer of bright green fresh basil from the garden. Then a layer of smoked Provolone cheese, even more savory and when it melts together with all the other crazy stuff, just fabulous. Now a layer of creamy fragrant Piquillo peppers from Basque Country, with that eye dazzling iridescent red color. And finally, at the center of this Roulade, a core of caramelized onions, garlic seared spinach, olive tapenade, creamy goat cheese with the herbs of Provence, bright red sun dried tomatoes and sauted porcini mushrooms to complete the roll. In a 14 inch cast iron pan, we saute in olive olive oil these cord wrapped packages until they are seared and melty inside, about 20 minutes. When each Roulade is sliced open, revealed are all these layers of savory other worldly flavors. But THEN we serve this crazy sumptuous Roulade with a Mushroom & Thyme Cream Sauce with Dijon Mustard for an umami explosion. Ingredients for the sauce… 1 pound brown cremini or porcini mushrooms, cut into thick slices2 – 4 shallots (depending on size) or 1 large onion, minced4 – 5 garlic cloves, crushed1/2 cup chardonnay1/2 cup Marsala (or Sherry)1/2 cup chicken broth (bone broth)1 1/2 cups cream1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil2 oz butter (1/2 stick)1 tablespoon duck […]

Fajitas

This feast is a charred meat umami bomb straight out of West Texas, originally made in the 1800’s with beef strip steaks… in fact sometimes cowboys were paid in meat and not money.  Those were tough times, and it was a harsh rugged job.  So if you want to cowboy up, or just enjoy a real fiesta, this is the real deal. This time we switched it up and used seared chicken!  You can also use shrimp! Serve with tons of salsa, sour cream, cilantro, guacamole, hot sauce and warm tortillas.  And several ice cold beers.   Enjoy!

Basque Braised Chicken Thighs with Peppers and Chorizo

I have always been fascinated by the Basque people, not just for their unique soulful cuisine, but also for the fact that no one really knows for sure where they come from or even where their language originates. Whenever folks go looking for the Basque origins, it turns out they were right there in their Basque Country homeland in the Pyrenees mountains all along, bordering both Spain and France, long before the French or the Spanish even existed.

Black Bean Mexican Casserole with Spicy Sausage and Ricotta

This meal is real soul food from the heart of central Mexico and very different from the familiar restaurant style Tex/Mex cooking. Rebekah and I have been making this little feast for at least twenty five years… I think a good portion of our four kids’ DNA is made up of this family favorite. We always make two or three casseroles at once, and it makes endless lunches and dinners, and if frozen in the glass casserole dish, is an easy dinner for four any time you need it. It is hearty, healthy, spicy, addictive and deeply satisfying, a comfort food that is a real protein bomb… in which the flavors are both separate and yet married in a magical way.

Salmon Yakitori on Pineapple Planks with Salsa

We love wild Sockeye salmon for its intense flavors and deep orange-red color. Happily, with this Yakitori feast, Sockeye filets are just the right size for pineapple planks and the wonderful full flavor stands up well to the intense umami flavors of the Yakitori sauce. And the bright crisp tropical flavor of the pineapple is a perfect contrasting flavor sensation to the salmon and the intense Japanese sauce, causing a delicious tension in the taste. With the pineapple salsa piled on top, it’s a really delightful feast.

Hanoi Turmeric Fish with Dill (Cha Ca La Vong)

This unique and ravishing feast is one of the top fish meals we have ever had in our lives. That covers a lot of ground and many years of cooking and a life lived fishing on the ocean. The story begins with a restaurant in Hanoi that is legendary. It serves only one dish… this dish… Cha Ca La Vong, which is Turmeric Fish with Dill.

Chicken Thighs in Mushroom & Thyme Cream Sauce with Dijon Mustard

This feast is your ticket to Umami City. This is a fusion feast, as if it were cooked by two lovers, a lady chef from the South of France, bringing her thyme, cream, bacon, duck fat, Dijon mustard, butter and Chardonnay… and her chef lover from Tuscany, with his Porcini powder, Marsala, olive oil and garlic. It’s a magical dish for all lovers.

Pulled Pork

Anyone who enters the fray about which region in America has the best Pulled Pork is in dangerous territory. Passions run high about BBQ and smoked meats, and from region to region, there is fierce competition. That being said, I’ll dive in anyway. I’ve always liked salty sour tangy flavors more than sweet, so I’m naturally drawn to the vinegar based marinades and rubs of Eastern North Carolina versus the sweeter stickier tomato based BBQ sauces of Kansas City or Texas.