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Grace in the Kitchen

Yet Another Grilled Vegetable Recipe

Grilled Vegetables with Roasted Chile Butter

 

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Honestly, how many ways can one make grilled vegetables before they become a) completely hackneyed or b) completely ridiculous? Apparently an infinite number, if you ask my editors—which is why I have to find some new treatment several times a year. READ MORE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Inside-Out Cheeseburger

© Tina Rupp

The gooey filling for these juicy burgers was inspired by the Mexican dip chile
con queso, made with melted cheese and roasted chiles. © Tina Rupp

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

One of my favorite trashy (not really trashy but just not that healthy) treats is queso fundido—a sinful melted cheese and roasted chile concoction. As if it's not dangerous enough as is, I like to stuff it between two burger patties and pop it on the grill until the cheese is all ooey and gooey. Make sure you have plenty of napkins and have not scheduled blood work for a few weeks. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Meat 'N Twos

© Con Poulos

In this ingenious 3-ingredient recipe, grilled fresh corn and poblano chile are
used in two ways: Half of the mixture gets pureed into a sauce that's served
under seared skirt steak and the rest becomes a chunky salsa that's spooned
on top. © Con Poulos

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Corn and poblano chiles are a magical combination—the sweetness from the corn mitigates the bitterness and heat of the poblanos—and the blend is amazing on savory, meaty skirt steak. In this superfun recipe that uses only three ingredients, not counting oil, salt and pepper (c’mon, that’s not a cheat!) I’ve grilled corn and poblanos, then pureed half with olive oil to make a sort of creamy allioli, then chopped the rest to make a salsa.

If I’d been allowed to add one more ingredient (the article held me to a rigid three) I’d have added some lime to brighten the whole thing up. Still and all, I think it’s pretty durned delicious. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Sweet Heat

Cherry preserves with habanero chile create a fabulously sticky, sweet and spicy glaze for <a href=

Cherry preserves with habanero chile create a fabulously sticky, sweet
and spicy glaze for these grilled chicken wings. © Lucy Schaeffer

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Crispy glazed wings, hot off the grill are unsurpassed in their deliciousness. My favorites are ones that combine opposing flavors and textures: sweet/spicy and crispy/sticky.

The trick to getting there is to grill (or fry or roast) your wings naked—with nothing more than salt and pepper and maybe a touch of oil on them until they’re supercrispy, then quickly coating them with a sugary glaze that gets caramelized at the last minute. That’s for texture. For flavor, I like to combine something sweet like jam (sour cherry preserves) with fresh aromatics—habanero and sautéed onion, in this case. The habanero makes them a little dangerous and the sweet cherry tames the heat. Like an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other, you need both to enjoy it all. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Movers and Shakers

© Christina Holmes

These grown-up lemon bars are made with paper-thin slices of lemon, giving
the sweet filling a pleasant bitterness. © Christina Holmes

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

At a recent trip to a great new restaurant in my neighborhood, 606 R&D, I had a most intriguing dessert called Shaker Lemon Pie—a double-crusted pie with a flaky crust and almost lemon-marmalade–like filling. It was quite good, but not flawless—the crust was a bit soggy and the filling was dry, but the flavor was intoxicating. I knew if I did a bit of work it could be even better. I asked my husband, Chris, from Shaker Heights, Ohio, the resident expert (at least in our house) on Shaker culture, but he’d never heard of it.

I was obsessed and had to know more, so I read a number of recipes online and found a few books about Shaker/Mennonite cooking. Obviously, lemons don’t grow in the Midwest, so it’s a relatively modern recipe (last century). Whole lemons are shaved superthin with skin (pick out the seeds) and macerated with sugar for a day or longer, then mixed with eggs, flour and butter and layered between two crusts. The rind softens and cooks like marmalade but with all of the other ingredients, it has more of a cakey/lemon curd/marmalade texture. I opted for something a little different. I made a shortbread-type bottom crust, which I topped with the lemon filling and a lattice of more shortbread. The result is a delicate, yet pick-up-able lemon bar that is tangy, sweet and buttery. It’s totally perfect to take to a Shaker church social or in my case, my back deck with a hot cup of milky, sweet coffee. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Baked and Blissed Out

These delicious stuffed shells get flavor from a mixture of two kinds of cheese and vegetables.

These delicious stuffed shells get flavor from a mixture of two kinds of
cheese and vegetables. © Christina Holmes

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Stuffed shells were a big treat when I was growing up. A little bit more labor intensive than baked ziti but not as complicated as lasagna, my mom would make shells for special occasions. Hers were straight ricotta-filled shells with a homemade (delicious) tomato sauce. Sometimes she’d put meat in the sauce or add spinach to the ricotta. Though I loved hers, I like a bit more texture and complexity to my stuffed shells. Sweet, caramelized fennel mixed with sautéed bitter radicchio, stinky (yummy) Fontina cheese, and creamy ricotta fill my shells. I originally developed this recipe to satisfy an editorial challenge: A jarred tomato sauce taste test. We tried dozens of jarred marinara sauces and some were phenomenally disgusting. I will not name names. The one favored by our staff was Rao’s—no surprise. It has a great consistency, rich flavor and spot-on seasoning, and is perfect for using straight out of the jar or in a recipe. For this dish, I combined the sauce with some cream to make it even richer and silkier. Though this recipe may seem complicated, using a good-quality jarred sauce, albeit a little doctored, makes it entirely doable. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Omelets Demystified

© Con Poulos

The trick to this wonderfully puffy souffléed omelet is to beat the
egg whites until they form soft peaks, then fold them into the yolks.
© Con Poulos

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

I can understand people feeling a bit intimidated when making omelets: There are so many different techniques and styles. Do you stir the eggs until they’re set or do you leave them be, then flip and fill? Do you lift the set edges to let the runny egg seep underneath? As if it’s not already stressful and nerve-racking enough, I like using the soufflé omelet method where the yolks are mixed with cheese and flavorings and then folded into beaten whites to make the fluffiest omelet ever. (I think it takes much of the worry out, because once the eggs are in the pan, that’s it, you’re done. But more on that later.)

In this one, I've sautéed watercress and beaten it, along with some stinky Fontina cheese, into the yolks, folded in the whites and poured it in the skillet where it cooks over moderately high heat for about 3 minutes undisturbed. Topped with a bit more stinky Fontina, then broiled until the cheese is melted and the eggs are set, it finally gets turned out (halfway out of the skillet, then folded onto itself) onto a large plate where it starts to deflate quickly. Meaning? Eat it right away! Honestly, 10 minutes of (potentially scary) work never had a bigger payoff. SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

Snack Attack

Black Pepper Kettle Corn© Quentin Bacon
© Quentin Bacon

This kettle corn is so satisfying—it’s salty, sweet and a little spicy. © Quentin Bacon

Food & Wine's senior recipe developer, Grace Parisi, is a Test Kitchen superstar. In this series, she shares some of her favorite recipes to make right now.

Being a urban dweller for most of my life, I’ve never been to a state or county fair, so for a long time I was unfamiliar with such classics as corn dogs, funnelcakes or kettle corn. The first time I saw a big, copper cauldron of kettlecorn bubbling away at the flea market in Aspen, Colorado, during my first year at the F&W Classic, I was more than just a little intrigued.Popcorn is my kryptonite—it doesn't even matter what type: caramel, cheese, chocolate, movie theater, Cracker Jacks (anything but microwave).

Recently I sampled some new popcorn products from G.H. Cretors, and loved them all. But hands down, kettle corn reigns supreme in my book! It’s the perfect combination of salty and sweet and exquisitely crunchy (the sugar creates a microscopically thin coating that makes the exterior delicately crunchy). Short of getting my own copper kettle, I think my method using a nonstick saucepan is pretty good. The most important thing is to keep moving the pan and have a bowl sitting next to the pot before you get started! SEE RECIPE »

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Grace in the Kitchen

A Lesson in Comfort Food

Grace in the Kitchen: Comfort Food

Photo © John Kernick

Grace Parisi's recipes bring happiness to the homesick.

For the past 10 years, I’ve hosted au pairs from all over the world: Brazil, Croatia, the Ukraine and every state in Germany. In turn, the au pairs have introduced my family to their amazing cultural traditions. In Germany, for instance, Advent means eating a sweet every day of December until the 24th, and Saint Nicholas Day, December 6, involves leaving shoes outside the bedroom door to be filled with candy. (Boy, did those au pairs love their chocolate.) I’ve had to combat a lot of homesickness, too, and food has always been my method. For Jenno (Sicilian-German), there was hazelnut-chocolate spread, eaten by the spoonful; for Alona (Ukrainian), buttery, crunchy chicken Kiev; for Glauce (our mournful Brazilian), hearts of palm salad; and for Katja (our intrepid German), chicken with spring greens. Those au pairs may not remember me, but I think of them whenever I make one of these recipes.

RECIPES:

Hearts of Palm and Avocado Salad This tropical salad is fresh and tangy with a terrific creamy dressing.

Quick Chicken Kiev Putting herb butter into the chicken breasts makes them insanely moist and succulent.

Tarragon Chicken with Spring Greens This aromatic chicken cooked with arugula, watercress and romaine lettuce makes a great one-skillet meal.

Hazelnut-Chocolate Spread This quick and easy homemade version of Nutella is super-rich and nutty.

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Grace in the Kitchen

Fast Southern Italian: The 45-Minute Nonna

Grace Parisi in the Kitchen

Photo © John Kernick

F&W’s Grace Parisi reinvents her Calabrian grandmother’s favorite recipes so they’re lighter and speedier.

Creating recipes that hit all the high points of southern Italian cooking is a no-brainer for me—one set of my grandparents came to this country from Palermo, the other from Messina and a town in Calabria. My maternal grandfather was a baker, pizzaiolo and restaurateur, and my paternal grandmother (my namesake) was an amazing home cook who taught me that not every southern Italian dish comes with a red sauce. My recipes here are a tribute to her. Southern Italians love their raisins, pine nuts and capers, all of which I mix into meatballs simmered in a sweet-and-sour braising sauce: agrodolce. Our beloved raisins and capers appear again with stewed peppers in a luscious side dish, peperonata, that I serve with grilled baby lamb chops. Aside from the chops, which may have been a bit fancy for my grandma, I think everything here would have been quite at home on her table.

Recipes

Grilled Eggplant Parmesan This grilled-vegetable version of eggplant Parmesan, like the one Grace Parisi's Calabrian grandmother used to make, is much lighter than the fried kind.

Grilled Lamb Chops with Peperonata A hearty mix of stewed peppers, onions, raisins and anchovies makes this peperonata more of a side dish than a condiment.

Agrodolce Meatballs Even in southern Italy, not every meatball is drenched in tomato sauce. These are cooked in a sweet-and-tart mixture of balsamic vinegar and chicken broth.

Oil-Poached Tuna with Fennel and Orange In this clever one-pot dish, Grace Parisi poaches fennel, shallots and orange zest in extra-virgin olive oil. She then cooks a tuna steak in that oil, making the fish incredibly moist and flavorful.

Related: More Fast Recipes from Grace
Fast Italian Recipes
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