Red walnuts' bright hue gives party dishes a festive touch. / © Con Poulos
F&W Executive Food Editor Tina Ujlaki applies her incredible cooking knowledge to explaining what to do with a variety of interesting ingredients.
I was shopping for stemmed artichokes at Eataly the other day when I came across the most beautiful walnuts I've ever seen. They were grown and packaged by the appropriately named Sanguinetti family in the Central Valley of California.
When you see their vibrant purplish-red color, you would swear they had been dyed (like they sometimes dye pistachios). The color actually comes from their red-skinned Persian parentage. With closed eyes, these large walnut halves taste just like a very fresh, crisp version of the brown English walnuts we”re familiar with, but they're so festive for parties—especially in nut mixes, salads, brittles, barks, breads and in other baked goods. Here are a few recipes that I love that would show off their gorgeous hue:
Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Capers, Walnuts and Anchovies
Smoked-Duck Salad with Walnuts and Raspberries
Aged Gouda Biscotti with Walnuts
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Most Wanted Recipe
To celebrate the 25th anniversary of F&W’s Best New Chef awards, one of our biggest stars shares one of her most requested recipes.
Gale Gand was named a Best New Chef 1994 while at Trio in Evanston, Illinois. She is now a chef-in-residence at Elawa Farm in nearby Lake Forest, as well as a partner at Tru in Chicago.
Over the course of her memorable baking career, Gale Gand has fielded requests for hundreds of recipes. But the most persistent pleas are for her chocolate blackout cake. She made it for the first time in 1996, when a customer asked her to re-create the recipe from the iconic Brooklyn bakery Ebinger’s, which went out of business in the ’70s. But Gand had never tasted the cake, and the recipe was a secret. So she began researching descriptions. “This was pre-Google; it wasn’t easy,” she says. After multiple tests, Gand arrived at a version she was happy with—layers of tender chocolate cake stuffed with chocolaty filling. “Now, it’s almost an underground thing. Someone will call and say, ‘I hear you do a blackout cake,’ and I’ll say, ‘Who sent you?’” RECIPE: Chocolate Blackout Cake
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