These prunes from Frankies 17 Spuntino may just change your mind about prunes. Stewed in red wine, the slow-cooked prunes melt in your mouth — a slightly tangy contrast to the decadent bed of creamy mascarpone. Reduced red wine syrup covers the plate, coating the mascarpone long after the prunes vanish. The beauty of the dish is its simplicity, yet another example of how Frankies’ dedication to the best ingredients results in spellbinding dishes that don’t require much work. We managed to secure their recipe so you too can master this chilled dessert.
Maybe we all have an inner Alsatian peasant longing for a dish just like this. As nights get colder and colder, the fruits of autumn — newly dried prunes, cabbage, and a harvested hog — are woven together with the wild piney flavor of juniper berries. Dried berries work very well, but ripe, juicy juniper berries lend a hint of sweetness that elevates this pork loin dish. Freeze any extra-ripe berries. They freeze beautifully.
Adapted from "The Wild Table" by Connie Green and Sarah Scott.
Moroccan cuisine is known for including spices such as cinnamon and cumin and lots of dried fruits. This was my first foray into Moroccan cuisine and I instantly fell in love. Such different combinations than I usually cook with and it was truly delicious.
Recipe from the book Girl Hunter by Georgia Pellegrini. Excerpted by arrangement with Da Capo Lifelong, a member of the Perseus Books Group. Copyright 2011.
To sauté pork tenderloins, cut them into rounds (noisettes) about 3/4-inch thick, brown them over high heat, and then continue cooking them until they are firm to the touch. Here, they are served with a sauce made with prunes soaked in wine, a little meat glaze (if you have it), and some cream.
We always ate this sweet brisket at Pesach and Rosh Hashanah. Originally from my grandmother, who was quite secretive with her recipes, this old family recipe was passed to my mother, who learned it by simply watching and copying, and then to me. Due to ill health, my mother can no longer cook, but we all think and talk about her when I make this dish. It has a particular sweetness for me that goes far beyond its taste. — Jaqui Wasilewsky from The Feast Goes On
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When dates are being dried, they exude a thick, molasses-like syrup. The Iraqi cook adds some of this syrup when making this dish, but the addition of brown sugar gives a somewhat similar flavor.
Click here to see The Definitive Guide to Middle Eastern Cooking.
I will, as I always do, cook duck for Thanksgiving. The reason is the fat. A duck may look slimmer, but when cooked it rarely dries out, while a turkey that’s leaner often does. To choose a leaner meat may be a good idea in general, but I definitely prefer something tastier.
Related: A Toast of Trumpets
If you think the duck renders too much fat while baking, I suggest you spoon off the overflow for use in other treats. Potatoes fried in duck fat are heavenly and a duck-fat omelette is marvelous. When done right, duck fat even stores really well.
Related: Carmelized Apple Tart
I also recommend using all the parts that come with it. The liver can be chopped up and sautéed with shallots, coriander, and cumin or seasoned with lime and cilantro for a perfect appetizer. The neck (and head and feet) and rest of the giblets make a great base for a stock (see below). This week’s recipe is my own creation, but I learned the baking method from both my mother and Elizabeth David (French Provincial Cooking, 1960). Happy Thanksgiving. — Johanna Kindvall
Related: Bacon Cups
This is an old-timey High Holiday vegetable side dish, sweetened with honey and raisins or prunes and, sadly, often simmered to mushy blandness. To get past that problem, roast the carrots first, to brown them and coax out their natural sweetness, and then bring everything together on the stove top at the end. Sunflower seeds add a nutty note to the chewy prunes and raisins.
— Rae Bernamoff
It's no secret that I love oats. I also love the holiday season! There is something about cuddling up indoors with loved ones that makes me feel so cozy inside. I make this dish throughout the year and it always reminds me of those special celebrations.
Click here to see How to Slim Down Your Diet.