Soft-Shell Crab Sandwiches with Pancetta and Remoulade
Bruce Sherman sprinkles these sandwiches with bits of hard-boiled egg and dresses the plate with a caper-brown butter sauce. In our version, the hefty soft-shell crab sandwiches are prepared by layering salty slices of pancetta, slabs of tomato and a remoulade made with store-bought mayonnaise.
"There's nothing better than a simple tempura of a primo vegetable," states Peter Hoffman. For this sensational version, he coats thick onion rings in an ultralight batter and quickly fries them. Hoffman says that any vegetable that slices nicely, like delicata squash, fennel or zucchini, would be great here, as long as it "takes to the batter"—meaning the batter stays on.
Smoked Gouda and Bacon Burgers with Barbecue Sauce
Brian Perrone was reluctant to put a burger on the Slows Bar BQ menu because he wanted to focus on barbecue. At the insistence of his partners, he came up with this patty melt-style burger topped with smoked Gouda, sweet house-made barbecue sauce and hot sauce-spiked onions. He’s glad he did: It was an instant hit.
White beans substitute for the usual potatoes in this chowder, made with sweet butternut squash, briny littleneck clams and smoky bacon. Rancho Gordo cellini beans give the soup a buttery richness, but Great Northern beans are terrific as well.
Rori Trovato of Rori's Artisanal Creamery in Santa Barbara, California, creates all kinds of ice creams. Ironically, her son, Roman, has become lactose-intolerant. "Poor guy," Trovato says. "His mom opens an ice cream shop and he can't have any!" That's why she created this dairy-free flavor.
Growing up in Silver Spring, Maryland, ad woman DeeAnn Budney attended all-day Chesapeake blue crab feasts organized by the Veterans of Foreign Wars. Now that she lives on the West Coast, she makes these fantastically spicy crab cakes with sweet Dungeness crab meat, but either kind works.
Chef Matt Molina and his friends had ultrafresh shrimp in the town of Cesenatico on the Adriatic coast. His recipe here re-creates the dish. Roasting the shrimp in hot salt concentrates their sweet flavor.
The Bar at the Peninsula in Chicago flavors its sweet potato fries with furikake, a Japanese seasoning made from salt, sesame seeds and nori that the restaurant spikes with chile or hot paprika. If you can't find furikake (sold at Asian markets), substitute chipotle chile powder.
Crispy fried shrimp are stuffed into a hollowed-out baguette that's been buttered, toasted, and spread with a zesty sauce. Use more Tabasco in the sauce to suit your taste, or pass the bottle at the table so fire lovers can sprinkle it directly on their sandwiches.
"Putting potato chips inside sandwiches has always been a favorite trick of ours," says chef Jon Shook. He and co-chef Vinny Dotolo serve chips on Tabasco-spiked lobster salad tucked into buttery toasted buns.
Michael Schlow uses potato flakes from a box in place of bread crumbs to form a supercrispy crust for cod fillets. For a quicker version, Grace Parisi dredges cod strips in flour and potato flakes to create crunchy fish sticks, which she serves with a chunky sun-dried-tomato tartar sauce.