Archive for May, 2024

This tasty recipe from NYT Cooking is a perfect weeknight supper. Combine shopped raw shrimp with onion, cilantro, chiles, egg, breadcrumbs, ginger, garlic and dried spices. Form into patties. Heat oil in a skillet and fry the patties for 3 or 4 minutes a side. Serve with chutney.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used frozen shrimp (thawed) with only salt added as a preservative. Panko breadcrumbs are usually additive free. Check the dried spices to be sure they don’t contain colour or anti-caking agents. President’s Choice mango chutney is additive free.

Cook patties for a few minutes on each side

Serve the patties with chutney


1 pound (454 g) shrimp, shelled, deveined and roughly chopped

1 small white onion, finely chopped

2 tablespoons (30 ml) chopped cilantro

2 Thai green chiles, finely chopped

1 large egg, beaten

¼ cup (60 ml) plain breadcrumbs

1 teaspoon (5 ml) ginger paste or freshly grated ginger

1 teaspoon (5 ml) garlic paste or freshly grated garlic

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) mild red chile powder

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) cumin powder

½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) garam masala

¼ teaspoon (1.25 ml) turmeric powder

1 teaspoon (5 ml) fine sea salt

¼ cup (60 ml) neutral-tasting oil

Mint or mango chutney, for serving


In a medium bowl, combine the shrimp, onion, cilantro, chiles, egg, breadcrumbs, ginger, garlic, chile powder, cumin, garam masala, turmeric and salt and mix until blended. Form patties about 2 inches (5 cm) in diameter and 1 inch (2.54 cm) thick and set aside (to form the patties more easily, you can pack the mixture into a ¼ cup/60 ml measure).

Heat ghee in a medium skillet on high for 30 to 45 seconds. Working in batches to avoid overcrowding the skillet, add patties and lower heat to medium. Fry until golden brown and the shrimp turns opaque, 3 to 4 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate lined with a paper towel. Serve with mint or mango chutney. Serves 4.

From NYT Cooking

This recipe from NYT Cooking is a good weeknight supper and a great way to get your greens. Combine garlic and spices and rub over chicken. Brown the chicken, then set aside, leaving the garlic in the pan. Stir in scallion whites, stock, greens, herbs and oil. Simmer until the greens wilt. Return the chicken to the pan and bake for 25 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate and add the scallion greens, butter, lemon zest and olives or capers to the pan. Add lemon juice, return chicken to the pan and toss with the greens. Cook’s note: I omitted the lemon zest and juice. I used spinach for the greens, basil for the herbs and capers.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

Check the dried spices to make sure they don’t contain colour or anti-caking agents. I used Better Than Bouillon for the stock. Make sure the butter does not contain colour.

Brown the chicken and set aside

Stir in the greens until wilted

Herby skillet chicken with greens


6 garlic cloves, 5 smashed and peeled, 1 finely grated or minced

1 teaspoon (5 ml) kosher salt, more as needed

1 teaspoon (5 ml) ground coriander

Pinch of red-pepper flakes

1½ to 1¾ pounds (680 to 794 g) boneless, skinless chicken thighs

1 bunch scallions

About 1 large or 2 small bunches kale, collard greens, mustard greens, mature spinach or other hardy greens (12 ounces/355 ml)

2 tablespoons (30 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, more as needed

1 cup (250 ml) chicken stock or water

1 cup (250 ml) chopped soft herbs, such as cilantro, dill, mint or basil, or a combination, more for serving

2 tablespoons (30 ml) unsalted butter

1 lemon, zested and halved

1 to 3 tablespoons (15 to 45 ml) chopped olives or capers (optional)


Heat oven to 425 degrees F (218 C). In a small bowl, stir together grated garlic, 1 teaspoon (5 ml) salt, coriander and red-pepper flakes. Rub all over chicken, then set aside to rest at room temperature while you prepare vegetables.

Thinly slice the scallions, separating the white and green parts. Pull the leaves off the greens and coarsely chop them (discard stems or save for another use). You should have 8 to 9 cups (2 to 2.2 L).

Heat a 10-inch (25-cm) ovenproof skillet over medium-high. Add oil and smashed garlic cloves, stirring to coat garlic in oil, then add chicken. Cook, stirring the garlic occasionally, until chicken is deeply browned on one side, 4 to 5 minutes. Turn chicken and cook for 1 to 2 minutes on the other side, just until no longer pink (the chicken will still be very raw inside). Transfer chicken to a plate but leave garlic in the pan.

Stir in scallion whites (save the greens for later) and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring, until softened and lightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in stock, greens, herbs, another pinch of salt and a drizzle of oil. Bring liquid to a simmer, tossing to wilt the greens (you might have to add the greens in batches, adding more as they wilt down).

When the greens are wilted, nestle chicken into skillet, browned side up, and pour in any juices from the chicken plate. Transfer skillet to oven and cook, uncovered, until chicken is cooked through, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove pan from oven and transfer chicken to a plate.

If pan juices are watery, bring to a simmer over high heat and cook until thickened slightly. Add scallion greens, butter, lemon zest, and olives or capers (if using) to the pan, stirring until the butter melts. Squeeze in a little lemon juice, then taste and add more salt and lemon juice if needed. Return chicken to the pan and toss with the saucy greens. Top with more herbs and serve. Serves 4.

From NYT Cooking

This recipe from NYT Cooking is a savoury combination of steamed clams, tomatoes and pearl couscous. Make a sauce with shallots, garlic, chile and tomatoes. Add wine and the clams and steam until the clams are cooked. Set the clams aside and add the couscous to the sauce. Cook for about 15 minutes, until the couscous is tender. Pour the sauce over the clams and serve. Cook’s note: On the advice of the person at the fish counter, I soaked the clams in cold water and a tablespoon of cornmeal instead of salt. I did not use parsley. I found this dish to be quite salty, so taste as you season.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives:

I used a wine from Frogpond Farm that contains a sulphite level below 10 parts per million. Ace Bakery’s crusty white bread is additive-free.

Cook shallots, garlic and chile

Steam clams and set aside

Add couscous to the sauce

Return clams to sauce and serve


3 pounds (1.36 kg) clams

Salt and pepper

3 tablespoons (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil

2 large shallots, chopped

4 garlic cloves, minced

1 small red chile (such as a red jalapeño), seeded and minced (about 1 tablespoon/15 ml)

3 cups (750 ml) cherry tomatoes

½ cup (125 ml) dry white wine

½ cup (125 ml) pearl couscous or fregola

2 tablespoons (30 ml) chopped fresh parsley

Crusty bread, for serving


Place the clams in a large bowl along with 1 tablespoon (15 ml) salt and fill the bowl with cold water. Set aside to let the clams release any grit.

While the clams soak, prepare the sauce: In a large Dutch oven (or a deep 12-inch/30-cm skillet with a lid), heat the olive oil over medium. Add the shallots and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but not browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Add the garlic and chile and stir until fragrant, 30 seconds to 1 minute.

Add the cherry tomatoes, ½ teaspoon (2.5 ml) salt and a few grinds of pepper and cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to collapse, 6 to 8 minutes.

Stir in the wine and bring to a boil.

While the wine comes to a simmer, lift the clams from the water and rinse well under running water, scrubbing if necessary.

Reduce the heat to medium-low and add the clams to the pot, evenly nestling them into the sauce. Cover and cook until the clams open, 8 to 12 minutes, checking every few minutes and removing clams and placing them in a large serving bowl as they open. (This will prevent the clams from overcooking.) Discard any clams that do not open.

Bring the liquid in the pot back to a boil over medium-high heat and add the couscous. Reduce the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the couscous is tender and the liquid in the pan has reduced, 10 to 15 minutes.

Off the heat, season the couscous mixture with salt and pepper to taste then carefully pour it over the clams. Garnish with the parsley and serve immediately, with crusty bread on the side. Serves 4.

From NYT Cooking

This hearty dish from Food and Wine combines spicy pork sausages with tomato sauce and garlic-rosemary white beans. Soak and cook the dried beans. Brown the sausages and set aside. Cook onion and garlic, add hot red pepper flakes, wine, tomatoes, water and fish sauce, return the sausages to the pan and simmer for about 10 minutes. Remove sausages when they are cooked, slice into thirds and return to the pan. Divide the warm, cooked beans among serving bowls and spoon the sauce and sausages over them. Garnish with arugula and cheese. Cook’s note: I omitted the arugula.

Avoiding Additives and Preservatives

I used Free From hot Italian sausages, Blue Menu tomatoes and Cock fish sauce; all are free of additives. Check the red pepper flakes to make sure they don’t contain colour or anti-caking agents. I used a wine from Frogpond Farm that contains a sulphite level below 10 parts per million. Genuine Parmesan cheese contains no additives; look for the name stamped on the rind.

White beans with sausage and arrabbiata sauce


1 pound (454 g) dried white beans (such as Marcella beans or cannellini beans)

2 dried bay leaves

1 (6-inch/15-cm) rosemary sprig

3 tablespoons (45 ml) extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for garnish

1 ½ tablespoons (22.5 ml) kosher salt, plus more to taste

5 medium garlic cloves, smashed, divided

1 pound (454 g) spicy Italian pork sausage

1 small yellow onion, finely chopped (about 1 cup/250 ml)

1 teaspoon (5 ml) crushed red pepper flakes

½ cup (125 ml) dry white wine

1 (28-ounce/796 ml) can whole peeled tomatoes, undrained

1 ½ cups (375 ml) water

1 tablespoon (15 ml) fish sauce

Arugula, fresh lemon juice, and shaved Parmesan cheese, for garnish


Place beans in a 6-quart (6 L) pot. Add water to cover beans by 2 inches (5 cm). Refrigerate, covered, at least 8 hours or up to 12 hours.

Add bay leaves, rosemary sprig, 2 tablespoons (30 ml) oil, salt, and 2 garlic cloves to pot with beans. Bring to a simmer over medium-high. Reduce heat to medium-low, and cook at a bare simmer, stirring occasionally, until beans are tender, 1 hour and 30 minutes to 2 hours. Season with additional salt to taste. Set beans aside; keep warm.

Heat remaining 1 tablespoon (15 ml) oil in a large skillet over medium-high until shimmering. Add sausages; cook, turning occasionally, until browned, 5 to 6 minutes. (Adjust heat as needed to prevent overbrowning.) Transfer sausages to a plate, reserving drippings in skillet. Add onion and remaining 3 garlic cloves to skillet. Cook over medium, stirring often, until onion is softened, 4 to 6 minutes. Add crushed red pepper, and cook, stirring often, 1 minute. Add wine, and cook, stirring often, until nearly evaporated, about 2 minutes. Stir in tomatoes, water and fish sauce; bring to a simmer over medium, stirring occasionally. Return sausages and any accumulated juices on plate to skillet; cook over medium, stirring occasionally and breaking up tomatoes into small pieces with a wooden spoon, until sauce has thickened slightly and flavours meld, 10 to 12 minutes. Remove sausages when fully cooked through. (Sausages should register between 160°F and 165°F/71°C and 73°C.) Season tomato mixture with additional salt to taste. Slice sausages diagonally into thirds and nestle pieces back into sauce.

Divide beans evenly among serving bowls, and spoon sauce and sausages evenly over beans. Lightly dress arugula with olive oil and lemon juice to taste. Garnish bowls with arugula mixture and shaved Parmesan. Serves 4-6.

From Food and Wine