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Seasonal food blog of Chef Deborah at Cuvée at The Greenporter Hotel

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Greenport Shellabration: A lesson in sustainability and community collaboration

November 16th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dinner, Events, Gardening, Gone fishing, Greenport, Long Island Wine, New York City, North Fork, Queens, Scallops, Seafood, Travel, Travels, Winter Recipes

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On Saturday and Sunday, December 3 and 4th, the Village of Greenport will celebrate its 5th, annual “shellfish-small plate-restaurant crawl”, known as Greenport Shellabration. During this weekend, a thousand people descend upon the Village of Greenport, from all over the tri-state area, to celebrate the revival of the shellfish industry in our local waters. Supporters make a $20 donation (advance purchase/$25 after the deadline of Nov. 25th) and receive a wristband that provides them access to $5 plates and $3 pours of wine at participating restaurant and vineyard partners (please click the banner above to see restaurants and vineyard participants). All proceeds benefit SPAT,(Suffolk Project  for Aquaculture Training), and the Back to the Bays Initiative, both efforts of Cornell Cooperative Extension Marine Program and based out of the Suffolk County Marine Environmental Learning Center; an educational center for research,  training and community collaboration located in Southold.

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Shellabration was the brain-child of Greenport resident, John Kramer who floated the idea by friends and potential participants during a quiet winter.  In his first year, he sold out his wristbands as participants came in from all parts of Long Island, New York City and Connecticut to participate. The SPAT program, which Shellabration supports, was founded by another pioneer, Kim Tetrault at Cornell Cooperative Extension Marine Program.

In 1998, Kim Tetrault, who holds an undergraduate degree in Field Biology from Connecticut College and a Master’s Degree in Shellfish Aquaculture from University of Rhode Island, made his was to New York. After completing his master’s work, he was offered a full-time position to run the Cornell shellfish hatchery with an emphasis in culturing scallops in the wake of the brown tide. While attending a conference he was inspired by a presentation that changed his life and upon his return, he wrote a business plan for a community training and gardening  program that would expand the community effort beyond that of the confines of the hatchery, into the public waters of the East End of Long Island. He founded SPAT in 2000, as a sanctuary for shellfish to hatch their young until they could reach an adult size and release their spawn into local creeks and bays and promote wild settlement.

The founding of Greenport Shellabration and SPAT are inspiring as they were both community, grassroots movement projects that became larger initiatives with national recognition.  The festival is being managed for the second year by Kim Barbour, head of outreach programs at Cornell Marine Program.

SeasonedFork’s Interview with Kim Barbour about this year’s Greenport Shellabration

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How does it feel to carry this torch forward and run this fundraiser and celebration in our village?

It’s exciting to manage this event and keep it going for its 5th consecutive year in the very Village where it was born.  There are so many things to love about Shellabration and how it reinforces the partnership between local businesses, our local shellfish industry, and our community. Most importantly, it raises awareness and support for our science-based programming conducted by Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Marine Program, specifically our SPAT Program and Back to the Bays Initiative.  Both of these projects create opportunities for people to get involved with efforts that are making a real impact on the health of our bays.

Tell us more about the Cornell Marine Extension? Describe the educational programs.

The core of our mission is educating the public, and conducting programming and projects that are focused on our marine environment.  Our efforts are designed to inspire youth and adults to become stewards of our environment.  This is done through programs like SPAT, which give anyone the opportunity to become an oyster gardener and learn just how important species like oysters are to the health of the bays.  We also conduct extensive marine and coastal habitat restoration projects, and large-scale shellfish enhancement projects focused on bringing back our bay scallops, creating oyster reefs, and seeding clams into our waters.  Our scientific professionals work very hard on these efforts each year, and through our Back to the Bays Initiative, we are able to provide our community members with unique experiences to get involved with this science-based work.  Shellabration directly supports these efforts.

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For young people interested in pursuing a career in agriculture or marine sciences, what is your advice?

I have a degree in Environmental Science with a minor in Public Relations from Marist College and Masters in Environmental Management from SUNY Stony Brook. In addition to planning and overseeing fundraising and outreach events, I also work on projects that involve fieldwork.  This sometimes requires me to be out on a boat, diving in the water or hiking through a marsh-it’s a pretty diverse job sometimes.

I know it doesn’t happen much these days where you go to school and study something and then you get to work in that specific field. I’m very lucky to have an opportunity to have a career that reflects what I formally studied in.  To high school and college students looking to pursue careers similar to mine, I’d recommend volunteering, interning and working on building your networks and skill set.  We take on interns and volunteers each year, and several of them now work for my organization.  It may take some patience and persistence, but it is possible to make a career out of what you’re passionate about, and what you choose to study in school.

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Why are shellfish so important for our environment?

The shellfish industry was a big part of our maritime heritage and marine economy but various water quality issues and related population decline of various shellfish species has made it more difficult to make a living on the water in recent decades.  This is where resource enhancement and aquaculture come in.  We need to build back our natural stocks, and in the meantime, aquaculture has become a viable alternative for those seeking to work on the water.

Our aquaculture experts like Kim Tetrault and Gregg Rivara help people who want to grow shellfish, either commercially for a living or on a smaller recreational scale with our SPAT program.  By helping train people in the field of aquaculture and through the shellfish seeding activities we do in partnership with local municipalities, we are facilitating the growth of millions of shellfish in our waters each year.  These filter feeders help improve water quality, create jobs, and when harvested get to be enjoyed by us at events like Shellabration!

 

photo credit: SPAT

What can we do, as individuals (who do not have waterfront property and don’t have the ability to farm oysters), to protect our local waters?

You want to be mindful that everything that happens on land can eventually impact our waters. We all possess a certain amount of power that can collectively help protect our resources. Also, simply getting involved with SPAT and Back to the Bays can go a long way in helping our marine environment! Each year we put out a publication that features a wide variety of “Ways to Give Back to the Bays” including everything from educational lectures, special events and fundraisers, science-based youth programming, stewardship workshops, the list goes on.  We try to offer accessible ways to get involved and give back.  By learning about the issues facing our bays and getting involved with growing oysters, restoring eelgrass, or by sending your children to one of our Marine Summer Camps, we can all become for informed and more involved.  That’s what’s going to help us see positive change!  Check out ccesuffolk.org/marine to learn more about a way to get involved, and I hope to see you at Shellabration!

 

 

 

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Winter Kale Salad with roasted butternut squash and dried cranberries

November 14th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, canning, City Cooking, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Grilling, Kosher, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Preserves, Queens, salad, Side Dishes, Snack, Thanksgiving, the baking corner, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes

kale-butternutsquash-cranberry-salad On the North Fork, winter is almost always a bit late and you won’t see the leaves begin to turn until early November. The copper colors of maple and the yellows and oranges of oak dot the roads of vineyards and farmland with their majestic hues. Visitors are often amazed by the variety and colors of vegetables on the stands even though winter is around the corner. Nonetheless, you will find the stands replete with members of the Brassica family like broccoli, brussels sprouts, cabbage, cauliflower, collards, kale, and kohlrabi and the Brassica rapa like Chinese cabbage and turnips; along with a myriad of squash varietals from Long Island cheese pumpkin to Kobocha and Hubbards. Most of these are as delicious raw as they are roasted or sautéed and they are great conductors for sauces and dressings that you can enhance with the herbs remaining in your garden.

This salad of kale with roasted butternut squash, or pumpkin of choice, brings the end of autumn together with holiday flavors and still makes for a light and healthful dinner of substance.

The squash
Preheat oven to 425
Cut butternut squash in half and scoop out seeds
Set aside seeds to clean and roast separately
Drizzle EVOO on the meat sides of the squash and sprinkle with North Fork Sea Salt
Bake with skin side up for 45 minutes

While squash is baking, clean the seeds by removing the pulp and wipe them dry with a damp towel.
Place in a bowl and toss with EVOO and bake for 10 minutes or until golden brown. When removing from oven, sprinkle generously with salt and other seasonings of choice and set aside for salad garnish or as a pre-dinner snack.

The salad
Take apart a head of kale
Remove the tough stems from the kale and soak in water
Drain the water and place leaves on towels to drain/dry

Rough chop the kale and place in bowl

The dressing
1/4 cup EVOO
1/8 cup of Apple cider vinegar
1/4 of North Fork Sea Salt
1 tablespoon of Agave syrup
2 tablespoons of garden herbs (I used sage, Greek oregano, and celery leaves)
Mix all ingredients in a blender or food processor and mix until emulsified.

Garnishes
1/4 of dried cranberries
Seeds and or nuts of choice

Peel and cube one side of the squash and save the other for another meal. It will keep at least a week because is has been salted and roasted.

Place the kale and the cubes of squash in a large bowl, pour the dressing and toss. Then add your garnishes on top for color.

Serve with a glass of semi-dry Riesling from Paumanok Vineyards.

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Persian-inspired chicken stew with spinach, fresh herbs and chicken

November 7th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, canning, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Hanukkah, Holiday, Kosher, leftovers, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Queens, Rosh Hashanah, Side Dishes, Soups & Bisques, Travel, Travels, Wine, Winter Recipes

Spinach and bean stew with chicken

I am am happy to see Persian cuisine getting it fair attention these days, as it is among my favorites. I had so many Persian friends during my college days in the Midwest and many of them were studying in exile as their country was in post revolution turmoil.

I recall the savory stews with green hues from spinach and herbs, crispy rice and so many other wonderful dishes. That Persian tradition was reintroduced into my life in when I arrived in New York became familiar with the dishes of the Bukharan-Russian Jewish community. Although Uzbekistan and Tajikistan pertained to the Soviet Union, their roots are in Iran and they speak a derivative of Tajik Farsi.

It is so amazing to sit in front of a plate of this dish at my friend’s table in a New York, Russian neighborhood. The spinach, legumes and chicken that has been in my friend’s family for generations; stemming back to Iran, made it all the way to Rego Park, Queens, where it is also serve it atop the familiar the aromatic rice with crispy bottom to the girl from Ohio.

Dont let this recipe intimidate you because it’s a flexible stew of beans, spinach or whatever greens you have. Any meat will do but the fattier the better as it will hold up in a slow cooker (when time permits) or in the pressure cooker (what I will do tonight).

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What’s on the Farm Stand: Cauliflower Fried Rice

October 31st, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Holiday, Kosher, leftovers, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Queens, Side Dishes, Snack, Spring Recipes, Summer, Summer Recipes, Tips, Travel, Travels, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes

Cauliflower fried rice for Meatless Monday

Photo by Cooking Planit

 

Ingredients
1/2 head of cauliflower (any color or try romanesco), riced
2 tablespoons sesame oil
1 small white onion, chopped
1/2 cup of grated or finely cubed carrots
peas or edamame
1/2 cup of bean sprouts
2-3 tablespoons tamari
2 eggs, lightly beaten (tofu is good if vegan)
2 tablespoons chopped scallions

After ricing the cauliflower, heat the sesame oil in a large skillet or wok over medium heat and pan fry until slightly toasted or browned and set aside. In the same pan, add the onion and carrots and fry for about 2 to 3 minutes and set aside.

Next, saute the eggs quickly in same pan and do not allow to form large clumps (should be in small bits).  Once cooked, then add all the veggies back in and add the tamari. Lastly add the chopped green onions and bean sprouts.

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Eggs–Flamenco style: the flavors of Andalucia, Spain

October 17th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, City Cooking, Columbus Day, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Drinks & Cocktails, Entertaining, Events, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, leftovers, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Preserves, Queens, salad, Side Dishes, Snack, Summer, Summer Recipes, The baking corner, the baking corner, Tips, Travel, Travels, Vegetarian, Wine

Photo: Courtesy of Devour Seville Food Tours

spanish-baked-eggs-with-ham-and-chorizoThis week, Village of Greenport will welcome a Tall Ship, El Galeon Andalucía, that will be on exhibit to the public from Tuesday, October 18 to Sunday, October 23rd. Tonight’s Meatless Monday post is Spanish-inspired and features eggs as the main source of protein. I feel that the concept of a meatless meal is less about eliminating meat but more about learning to not make meat the featured entrée on our American plates. This is how our ancestors survived for centuries; on a diet of grains and vegetables using meat sparingly as a flavor enhancer–not as the main “event”. On the best stocked vessels that sailed from Spain to the New World, meat would have been rationed even though the Spanish explorers were known to sail with chickens, pigs and other animals aboard but they understood the need to conserve.

elgaleon-andaluciaTonight’s for Huevos a la Flamenca,”>recipe was adapted from a the website of a foodie tour company that takes people on food tours in Seville and surrounding areas,Devour Seville Food Tours. I cut down a bit on the meat additions as I want to feature our fresh, organic and silky eggs, baked with tomato, peppers, vegetables, herbs and garnished with just a tiny bit of ham (Serrano or Proscuitto) and/or a few bits of minced, smoked chorizo sausage for flavor. If you are vegetarian or kosher or don’t have access to your favorite prosciutto or Serrano ham, just use whatever sliced ham or sausage you have in the fridge or eliminate the meat all together.

Ingredients
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 red peppers, finely chopped
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
2 medium sized tomatoes (grated on a cheese grater or finely minced)
8 eggs
4 slices of Serrano ham
1/2 cup finely minced smoked chorizo
5 ounces asparagus, blanched and chopped
1 tablespoon smoked paprika (Pimenton)
Salt and pepper to taste
chopped parsley for garnish
Instructions
Preheat oven to 395 F

Pan fry the onion and peppers slowly in the olive oil until they are soft.
Then add the garlic. This should take approximately 10 minutes.
Continue to fry until you start to smell the garlic, then add the tomatoes and paprika.
Continue to fry over low heat for 15 minutes.
Divide the tomato, onion and pepper mixture into 4 ramekins.
Break 2 eggs on top of each.
Top each ramekin with 1 slice of ham, a tablespoon of minced chorizo and 2 tablespoons of chopped asparagus on top of each.
Bake the ramekins for about 10 minutes until the eggs are cooked to your liking.
Garnish with parsley, salt and pepper to taste.
Serve with crusty bread, a green salad and a glass of dry, fino Sherry from this Southern region of Spain, Jerez de la Frontera.

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Grilled cheese; only better

October 10th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, Brunch, canning, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Grilling, Kosher, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, Preserves, Queens, Snack, Soups & Bisques, Spring Recipes, Summer, Summer Recipes, Tips, Vegetarian, Winter Recipes

Cream of tomato soup with cheese quesadillaGrilled cheese is just one of those things we never outgrow. The image of warm cheese oozing through the buttered bread, soft on the inside and slightly crisp on the outside remains forever alluring; regardless of age.

Nowadays, I want the grilled cheese without all the bread and a corn tortilla is the perfect solution for this dilemma. You an also opt for a whole grain, low carb tortilla for your cheese “receptacle” as well.

Add butter or EVOO to a heated pan and place the tortilla in the pan, followed by the cheese of choice — grated. I love Manchego, smoked gouda, a really good cheddar cheese or a creamy local goat cheese from Catapano Dairy Farm. After you pile on the cheese, you can add minced jalapenos or peppers of choice; in their pickled or or preserved state of relish or jam as well. If it is a smaller tortilla shell, add another on top and flip it to griddle the other side. If it is a larger tortilla, merely fold it over. Allow the finished quesadilla to slightly cool and cut into triangles to enjoy with a bowl of garden harvested cream of tomato soup! Enjoy!

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Meatless Monday: Cream of Tomato Soup and “grilled cheese”

October 10th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, Brunch, canning, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Grilling, Kosher, leftovers, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Preserves, Queens, Side Dishes, Snack, Soups & Bisques, Summer, Summer Recipes, Tips, Travel, Travels, Vegetarian

Cream of tomato soup with <a href=cheese quesadilla ” width=”300″ height=”225″ />On these chilly evenings, I crave comfort foods like this fresh version of cream of tomato soup with grilled cheese quesadilla and jalapeño relish.

If you haven’t already picked all your tomatoes, these are the final days of the tomato harvest on the North Fork. Even if they are green, you can let them ripen on the window sill or make green tomato soup or salsa.

Ingredients and instructions
Sauté the following ingredients in 1/8 cup of EVOO, until slightly browned.
1/4 cup of chopped red pepper
2 tablespoons of chopped white onion
2 tablespoons of chopped celery
1 clove of garlic
1/2 teaspoon of salt
Red chili flakes

Lastly add
1 cup of your favorite tomatoes and additional salt and seasoning like celery salt or pimenton and sauté lightly
Then add
2 cups of seasonedfork garden stock
Use emersion blender to purée
Lastly add
1/4 of heavy cream or half and half

Serve hot with your favorite green garnish like Basil or cilantro.

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Simple Pumpkin Empanadas for Meatless Monday: Not just for vegetarians

October 2nd, 2016 · 1 Comment · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, Brunch, canning, City Cooking, Columbus Day, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dessert, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Greenport, Holiday, Kosher, Kosher non-dairy dessert, leftovers, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New Year's, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Passover, Preserves, Rosh Hashanah, salad, Side Dishes, Snack, Thanksgiving, The baking corner, the baking corner, Tips, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine, Winter Recipes

It’s Autumn in New York and bright colors of pumpkins and squashes dominate the farm stands on North Fork of Long Island. Spaghetti squash, cheese pumpkin, butternut, delicata and acorn squash along with all shapes and colors of gourds welcome in the new season. Pumpkin or any squash stand-in make great staples for Meatless Monday and this Meatless Monday happens to fall on Rosh Hashanah — L’Shanah Tovah!. Pumpkin empanadas or bourekes make a great main dish for this holiday if made larger, along side a salad or soup. And if made smaller, they make great finger food for a vegetarian smorgasbord for the holiday along with leek and potato latkes, vegetable coconut curry and some local honey wine.

Ingredients:
Package of puff pastry or empanada dough
2 cups of baked Pumpkin or dense squash of choice
1/8 teaspoon of kosher salt
1/8 teaspoon of curry
1 tablespoon of local honey
A dash of cinnamon to taste
Black pepper
Sesame seeds
Demerara Sugar

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Pissaladiere: Quick Garden “Pizza”

September 19th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brooklyn, Brunch, canning, City Cooking, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Gardening, Greenport, Italian, Kosher, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New York City, North Fork, Nut allergy, nut-free, pareve, Summer, Summer Recipes, the baking corner, Travel, Travels, Vegan, Vegetarian

pissaladiere-garden-pizza-at-greenporter-hotelSome form of “pizza” can be found all over the Mediterranean. Veggies, cheese and/or meat on a type of flat bread and baked until golden brown.  You will find the French version across the bakeries of France but the dough does not have the same elasticity as Italian pizza dough. It is more flaky and buttery like puff pastry but not exactly.  In France it is referred to as Pissaladiere and in it’s native town of Nice, you will often find it topped with olives and anchovies.

With the remnants of my garden tomatoes being made into sauces, jams and soups, I am gathering up the last of the zucchini, onions and eggplant to bake atop a sheet of puff pastry (standing in for my pissaladiere dough), along with some creamy local goat cheese from Catapano Dairy Farm.

I always keep a few sheets of high quality puff pastry in the freezer for those days when I need to produce dinner on the fly! This dough thaws in under 15 minutes and cooks quickly on high temperature in the oven.

Not only do I make this at home for a quick Meatless Monday dinner but we often have it at the hotel for staff meal and it’s always a crowd pleaser.

This weekend our interns helped clean up the garden and we prepared a pissaladiere together and enjoyed it with a green salad and homemade lemonade.  You can use whatever veggies you like but just be sure to par bake the dough before adding the toppings and make sure the veggies are sliced thinly.

This dish is a great way to enjoy the last of the summer garden veggies.

Garden Pissaladiere ingredients and directions
Serves up to 8 people

quick-garden-pizzaBrush 2 tablespoons of EVOO on a large baking sheet
Add the 2 sheets of puff pastry (there are brands that are dairy-free), rolled flat with rolling pin and stretched to fill a large baking sheet
Poke holes with fork and bake the dough at 475 for 10 to 15 minutes 0r until mostly done
Allow to cool
Once, cooled, spread 1 cup of prepare (seasoned) tomato sauce over the dough — spread thinly and evenly
Then add thinly sliced veggies of choice: eggplant, peppers, zucchini, onions, spinach, mushrooms, etc.
Top with 4 oz of Catapano goat cheese (dairy is optional) and bake for 20 minutes at 425 or until the crust is light brown and the veggies are cooked and glistening.

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Perfect Saffron Rice in your rice cooker

September 4th, 2016 · No Comments · Agrotourism, Allergies, Brunch, Christmas, City Cooking, Columbus Day, Cooking Classes, Cuvee at The Greenporter Hotel, Dietary Restrictions, Dinner, Entertaining, Events, Fall Recipes, Gardening, Gluten-free, Greenport, Grilling, Hanukkah, Holiday, Kosher, leftovers, Long Island Wine, Low-Calorie, Lunch, Meatless Mondays, New Year's, New York City, North Fork, pareve, Passover, Queens, Side Dishes, Snack, Soups & Bisques, Thanksgiving, Tips, Travel, Travels, Vegan, Vegetarian, Wine

Saffron rice

People always ask me about my rice and I will proudly confess that I use a rice cooker. I love to make saffron rice as a side dish for Mediterranean flavors as it enhances any type of meat or vegetable braise. If you have a rice cooker and have never used it, now is the time to dust it off.  If you do not have one, you can buy one for under $20 and it will be one of the best kitchen gadgets you ever purchased.

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