Bistro Duck Breasts
Duck breasts are one of my favorite things to make for a quick and elegant dinner. Originally created for Episode 308, Season 3, of Sara’s Weeknight Meals,
this “cook once, eat twice” recipe gives you a head start on the next night’s entree, Peking Duck Wraps.
Recommended side dishes: coucous and butter braised baby carrots
Makes 4 servings
6 Peking duck breast halves
1 shallot, minced (about ¼ cup)
1 cup chicken broth
¼ cup dry red wine more »
Mom’s Brushed Eggplant
Growing up, we ate our fair share of frozen vegetables: corn, peas, French green beans with toasted almonds (fancy!), the dreaded limas, etc. But every so often my mom would step out and experiment with fresh vegetables. She made a mean vinaigrette, and we always kept a jar of this homemade stuff in the fridge. She ended up inventing this very simple, very tasty eggplant side dish, which consists of nothing more complicated than sliced eggplant brushed with vinaigrette and… more »
Matzo Brie with Creamed Spinach and Crispy Onions
I didn’t know about matzo brie, that wonderful breakfast dish consisting of matzo and beaten eggs cooked in a lot of butter, until I started dating my now-husband (who is Jewish) in the mid-seventies. His mom, Esther, made it for me and I thought it was absolutely delicious. I always wondered if you could build on matzo brie, treating it much as you would treat an omelet or scrambled eggs and throw in any old ingredient. So I tried it… more »
Creamy Lime Corn Soup with Cumin Salted Tortilla Strips
Here is a luxuriously thick soup that is very low in calories, especially if you leave out the tortilla chips. You really boost the corn flavor by adding cobs to the broth. Indeed, anytime you have leftover cobs kicking around, especially at the end of the summer, you might want to cook up a corn broth and salt it away in the freezer in anticipation of those long, cold winter months. Then it’s a snap to make this soup using… more »
Tomato, Basil, and Cheese Tart with Pancetta Crust
I developed this tart in the mid-eighties for a column in Gourmet…
magazine called “Gastronomie Sans Argent,” which loosely translated means “eating well on a budget.” It was for an August issue, and the theme was tomatoes. Not a tough assignment; I can’t think of a cheaper and more satisfying way to feel rich than to bite into a locally grown beefsteak tomato in season. I came up with an entree that recruited all of the tomato’s usual partners in more »
I think of this recipe as the perfect backyard cooking for a crowd summertime salad because it features three of the shining stars of summer—corn, tomatoes, and basil—and because all the parts can be prepared ahead of time and tossed together at the last minute. When I’m in the country and find a roadside stand selling just picked corn, I cut it off the cob raw, straight into the bowl, and don’t even bother with the quick boiling step. Raw… more »
Ruthie’s Summer Camp Zucchini
When my daughter Ruthie was six, she started attending “summer camp,” which was actually extended day care based out of the house of a teacher she’d come to know and love. There were only four kids in the camp and they did all sorts of fun things. Of course I was thrilled to learn that once or twice a week they had cooking classes. I had been trying to get Ruth into the kitchen from the age of two, but… more »
Fresh Corn Spoon Bread with Broccoli and Sharp Cheddar
I have always loved Southern spoon bread—that creamy, airy cross between cornbread and a soufflé. I have added sharp Cheddar cheese and broccoli so that it becomes a substantial breakfast for dinner. One cup of any cooked vegetable would work here—cauliflower, peas, carrots, green beans, spinach, and so on—and three ounces of any good melting cheese would be fine too.
Makes 4 servings
Hands-on time: 15 minutes
Total preparation time: 40 minutes
2 cups whole milk
1 1/2 cups fresh… more »
Mexican-style Street Corn
Grilled corn slathered with mayo and coated in grated cheese is a well-loved staple of Mexican street fare. Several years ago Gourmet…
magazine ran a recipe for this tradition using shredded cotija, a crumbly aged-cured Mexican cheese. At the time, it occurred to me that it might be a hit at an American backyard barbecue if the cheese called for in the recipe was good old one-size-fits-all Cheddar. Sure enough, I tried it out on my kids, and they loved more »
Corn and Jalapeño Cakes with Goat Cheese
When I made the first batch of these corn cakes and topped them off with a slice of tomato and goat cheese, they were so substantial they reminded me of a burger. The fresher the corn the tastier these cakes will be, because the minute you pick an ear of corn its sugar starts to turn to starch. The best scenario would be to put a pot of water on to boil, pick and husk the corn from the cornfield… more »
Smoked Chicken or Turkey Salad
This is an adaptation of a smoked chicken salad recipe sent to me by Mary Collette List of Kalamazoo, Michigan—a frequent visitor to my Web site—who tasted it for the first time at a friend’s potluck dinner and then went home and figured it out. I added the option of using smoked turkey instead of smoked chicken. (Smoked turkey is more readily available.) I also decided to make the pecans spicy by tossing them in my Creole Spice Mix and… more »
A Summer Salad from Paris
Cory Van Horn sent me this photo along with an e-mail saying “I made your ‘Summer Salad from Paris’. . . . This recipe is delicious! I loved how all the flavors scream summer.” You can find more of his work at www.culinarycory.com.
Janis Adler is my sister-in-law. When I went to France to do an apprenticeship in the late Seventies, Jan made the trip with me and we had a lot of fun banging around for a few days… more »
Nectarine and Plum Upside-down Cake
This is a variation of the 10-minute Basic Yellow Cake that you’ll also find in the Easy Desserts chapter of Sara’s Secrets for Weeknight Meals…
. It takes a little longer because you have to slice and arrange the fruit, but it is really worth it. You could use all nectarines, all plums, or throw peaches into the mix. When fresh stone fruit are in season there’s no better time to try this easy summer dessert.
Makes 9 servings
Hands-on more »
Smoky Fish Chowder
There are two things that my dad makes, one is scrambled eggs (especially on Christmas) and the second is fish chowder which he must have learned from his Mom, Ruth Moulton, who was a wonderful ye olde New England cook, or possibly from a guide on one of his fishing trips to Grand Lake Stream in Maine (where he still goes to fish every year). This is my modern cheating version of fish chowder.
Makes about 9 cups, 4 servings… more »
One of my husband Bill’s favorite dishes is Vitello Tonnato. Cold sliced veal with a tuna sauce. It is an Italian version of surf and turf. Trying to imagine another recipe on which to use this tasty sauce, I thought of eggs. I love stuffed eggs. My mom has never stopped making them, even when the food police declared them taboo. Fortunately, as of October 2000, the position of the American Heart Association is that an egg a day is… more »
Sara’s New Book
|In my newest book, I share more than 200 new family-tested, family-pleasing recipes. Whether you’re new to the kitchen or just looking for a way to spice up your recipe repertoire, my carefully tested quick and easy recipes will help you get dinner on the table every night of the week.