Cal Peternell

Cal Peternell, sous chef at Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California, makes an already simple cooking method—braising—even easier. By baking the lamb roast uncovered and turning it twice, the areas of the meat that are not submerged in the braising liquid brown nicely, eliminating the mess and awkwardness of searing a large piece of meat on the stove top. More Amazing Lamb Recipes
Lemon Upside-Down Cake
Rating: Unrated
Cal Peternell likes teaching recipes that are extremely versatile, like this one. The cake is wonderful when it's made with almost any type of fruit, from figs and blood oranges to pineapple. Peternell usually uses sweet Meyer lemons from his neighbor's tree. Regular lemons are tasty too and add a bitter note that's a lovely contrast to the gooey brown-sugar topping.Plus: More Dessert Recipes and Tips
Instead of butterflying a boned leg of lamb and cooking it whole, Cal Peternell carefully cuts along the four natural muscle separations (they're easily visible) and pulls the four pieces apart with his fingers. Grilling the lamb this way is quicker, makes it easier to determine doneness, and simplifies carving. Plus the meat develops a mellow flavor and lots of delicious crust. Plus: More Grilling Recipes and Tips
Creamy Fennel Mashed Potatoes
Rating: Unrated
Instead of relying on heavy cream and butter, this recipe uses lighter ingredients like olive oil and half-and-half to make it especially creamy. The fennel puree adds an aromatic twist to the familiar potato flavor.Plus: More Vegetable Recipes and Tips
One of Cal Peternell's key lessons is the importance of salt. He sprinkles it generously over the beets for this salad to concentrate their earthy taste and uses it to season the water for boiling the cauliflower. He also has a trick for adding creaminess to a dressing: He stirs finely chopped hard-boiled eggs into it for a silky richness.Plus: More Vegetable Recipes and Tips