When executive chef Javi Perez helped design Pomelo at The Orchard’s menu, he created dishes that were simple yet elegant. “When you read our menu, you know what you’re going to get and almost everything is made from scratch,” he says. The pan roasted wild salmon has quickly become popular with customers, but it also happens to be Perez’s favorite dish on the menu.
Even though there are many steps to follow when cooking the dish, Perez says it’s a great recipe for a home cook. “If you want to impress your friends, it takes a little time, but anyone can make this. Once plated, it looks like it came from a fine dining restaurant.”
For some, this is the most wonderful time of year. No, I’m not referring to the upcoming holidays. I’m talking about football season – a time to don our jerseys, gather 'round the TV to cheer on our favorite teams and, of course, chow down on finger foods. But this weekend, instead of tired pretzels and bland wings, impress your football fanatic friends who temp as foodies with this recipe for queso carnitas poppers from Anthony Serrano of El Palacio restaurant in Chandler.
“Everyone loves deep-fried (food) and everyone loves cheese,” he says. “It’s a winner.”
You can buy the salsa and carnitas at most Valley grocery stores, or make it at home, Serrano says. If you like your food on the spicy side, he suggests adding the optional jalapenos or another hot pepper.
But if you’re not ready tackle the recipe at home, the poppers will be available on El Palacio’s new menu debuting Oct. 31.
As the Valley takes a collective breath of relief and Phoenicians start to venture out from their air-conditioned caves, chefs across town are rolling out fall menus loaded with hearty autumnal foods – gourds galore! The Thirsty Lion debuted six fall dishes in September, including this Grilled Shrimp & Butternut Squash Risotto.
Executive chef Keith Castro says the dish is great to prepare at home, depending on how much time you have. “Risotto is a labor of love,” he says. “The actual risotto part of the recipe takes the better part of an hour to do it correctly.”
When you think about eating a salad, you probably envision cold, crisp lettuce in a bowl brimming with fresh vegetables. But have you ever cooked your greens on the barbecue? At Nook Kitchen, Executive Chef Nick LaRosa grills up a warm romaine salad and it’s hearty enough to serve with a steak knife.
“I put everything in there that I like to eat – bacon, tomatoes, cucumbers and hard boiled eggs,” he says of the recipe. Customers sometimes add poached shrimp, grilled chicken or a short rib. “That’s a serious salad.”
Many nights when I’m running late, I’ll stop at the grocery store and buy a roasted chicken. When I get home, I make a quick salad and voilà, dinner is done. But really, with a little advanced planning, roasting my own chicken isn't that much extra work for a simple, delicious dinner at home.
According to Chef Sal Zappone, owner of Zappone’s Italian Bistro, “Everybody loves a great roasted chicken.” His recipe is a take on his mother’s version. “It’s all about using the rosemary and the garlic and letting it marinate so the flavors really develop,” he says.
Chef Michael Rusconi developed his love for the flavor and fragrance of white truffles while working at Mary Elaine’s at The Phoenician many years ago. When white truffles were delivered via the freight elevator into the kitchen, the scent infiltrated all corners of the restaurant. “The smell is so unique. You never forget that,” he says. “And nothing else tastes quite like it.”
To spread his love of white truffles, Rusconi whips up truffled macaroni and cheese to go along with beef tenderloin at Rusconi’s American Kitchen.
Recipes for Hoppin’ John, an American Southern rice and pea dish, can be spotted in cookbooks dating back to the 1840s. But most every country and nationality has a rice and pea dish, according to Chef Stephen Jones of the larder + the delta at DeSoto Central Market.
To celebrate National Sandwich Month, Miracle Mile Deli has been offering a $9 special each week on a different deli sandwich. From Aug. 22-31, customers can order “The Straw,” which features a stack of hot pastrami and tangy sauerkraut topped with melted Swiss cheese on a couple of slices of fresh rye bread alongside a pile of crisp French fries and a pickle spear.
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