Mary-Frances Heck

Gazpacho
Rating: Unrated
1
Perfect for sweltering summer days, this refreshing chilled soup is bursting with sweet and juicy peak-season tomatoes. Bright sherry vinegar and shallots balance the silky-smooth vegetable puree while salsa fresca adds a crunchy bite and pops of fresh herbs. Look for plump, bright red tomatoes to give the soup a vibrant color.
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This seasonal twist on a classic is loaded with summer market finds like tomatoes, zucchini, and bell peppers. Quick-cooking boneless chicken pieces are gently simmered in a ginger-and-cilantro-infused broth with a dash of soy sauce. The eye-catching garnish tray doubles as a colorful centerpiece, allowing guests to pile their bowls with aromatic fresh herbs, spicy chiles, and juicy citrus. 
Shrimp Bisque
Rating: Unrated
New!
Sautéed shrimp shells impart a sweet complexity to the foundation of this deeply flavorful bisque. White rice is slowly simmered in the aromatic broth and then pureed to give the soup body and a velvety consistency, without masking the flavor of succulent shrimp. Serve with chopped steamed shrimp and a crusty baguette. 
Packed with fresh summer herbs, this chilled beet soup is bright, earthy, and doesn't require turning on your stove. Grated beets are quickly marinated in a pickle juice brine to mellow their earthiness before they are stirred together with grated cucumber and buttermilk for a crisp, cooling bite. The topping of quartered hard-cooked eggs, generous dollops of sour cream, and fresh herbs add textural interest, color, and heft as they help make each bowl a satisfying meal.
Vichyssoise
Rating: Unrated
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This simple chilled potato soup is packed with buttery, sweet sautéed leeks and pureed for a silky-smooth texture. A swirl of half-and-half adds the perfect amount of richness to cut the starchy potatoes without weighing down the light and creamy vichyssoise. Topped with crunchy garlic croutons, shaved pecorino Romano cheese, and a scattering of sliced scallions, this soup deserves a spot in your summer rotation.
You can skip most jarred specimens — for the best garnishes for your cocktail, head to the olive bar.
Master the steps for sizzling spit-roasted shawarma at home.
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The remarkable butcher and grass-fed-beef evangelist Pat Whelan is the author of The Irish Beef Book. Coauthored with the restaurant critic Katy McGuinness, the cookbook contains a simple-yet-divine dinner idea: these smallish "pies" filled with a smart combination of fresh chorizo and lean grass-fed ground beef. Seasoned with onion and Worcestershire—we've amped up the filling with extra spices in Senior Food Editor Mary Frances Heck's adaptation of the dish here—they come together in a snap and can easily be made ahead. The topping of thinly sliced starchy russet potatoes form a crispy, potato chip–like topping atop each meaty pie. The move is genius and delivers the comfort of shepherd's pie without the steps involved in making mashed potatoes. All in all, this recipe will please kids and adults and, if you sub the meat for a plant-based version, vegetarians, too.
Take a little soppressata, some chopped calabrian chiles, and a drizzle of hot honey, and you'll end up with the pizza of the moment. Calabrian chiles, fiery chiles from Italy, add heat and a distinctly fruity flavor to this pie. The hot honey mirrors the flavors of the chiles, and adds a touch of sweetness. 
Master the steps for sizzling spit-roasted shawarma at home.
The remarkable butcher and grass-fed-beef evangelist Pat Whelan is the author of The Irish Beef Book. Coauthored with the restaurant critic Katy McGuinness, the cookbook contains a simple-yet-divine dinner idea: these smallish "pies" filled with a smart combination of fresh chorizo and lean grass-fed ground beef. Seasoned with onion and Worcestershire—we've amped up the filling with extra spices in Senior Food Editor Mary Frances Heck's adaptation of the dish here—they come together in a snap and can easily be made ahead. The topping of thinly sliced starchy russet potatoes form a crispy, potato chip–like topping atop each meaty pie. The move is genius and delivers the comfort of shepherd's pie without the steps involved in making mashed potatoes. All in all, this recipe will please kids and adults and, if you sub the meat for a plant-based version, vegetarians, too.
Take a little soppressata, some chopped calabrian chiles, and a drizzle of hot honey, and you'll end up with the pizza of the moment. Calabrian chiles, fiery chiles from Italy, add heat and a distinctly fruity flavor to this pie. The hot honey mirrors the flavors of the chiles, and adds a touch of sweetness. 
It's important not to weigh your pizza down with too many toppings, which can make for a soggy pie, so this pizza only requires a small amount of wild mushrooms. Choose whatever looks best at the market. That said, we love this pizza with a drizzle of Fancy Ranch dressing (which almost makes it a salad, right?) Fancy Ranch is a homemade ranch dressing gussied up with a few chopped briny anchovies. But why stop with just a drizzle when you can also serve the pizza with a small bowl of the dressing alongside for dipping?
The combination of the meaty, briny, vegetal flavors in this pizza hits so many satisfying notes that it is sure to be a hit at your table. The olives, peppers, sausage, and ricotta combine to bring sweet, savory, salty, and creamy notes to this pretty pizza. Bright green and meaty Castelvetrano olives offer a refreshing upgrade from the standard canned black olives served at many pizzerias, and mirror the Mediterranean seasoning in the crumbled Italian sausage generously topping this pizza.
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It may seem like a crazy idea, but doubling the carbs on this pizza is one delicious way to serve up a pie. This pizza starts with the flavors of the classic Alsatian pizza, made with cremé fraîche, caramelized onion, and bacon, and adds soft confit garlic cloves and thin slices of potatoes. A little greenery from kale and chives, and you've got an exceptional pizza to both look at and eat. 
Classic Cheese Pizza
Rating: Unrated
New!
Sometimes all you want at the end of the day is a simple cheese pizza. This recipe turns simple into sublime with the addition of an exceptional pizza dough, low-moisture mozzarella cheese, and an easy to make tomato sauce that hits all of the right sweet and savory notes to marry all of the flavors in this pie. A simple garnish of fresh herbs, and you've got perfection on a plate.
Artisan Pizza Dough
Rating: Unrated
6
Despite its reputation as a convenience food, the most essential element of great pizza is time. A slow fermentation gives our pizza dough its chewy-crispy texture and depth of flavor. It starts with your choice of sourdough starter (aka levain) or a simple mixture of flour, water, and active dry yeast (poolish) left to ferment for 12 hours. Both options start fermentation and build flavor in the dough overnight. Strategic stretching of the dough during the initial fermentation stage develops gluten and makes the dough evenly elastic and forgiving to work with. Each 9-ounce dough ball will make one 10-inch pizza, a personal-size pie that's also easy to maneuver around home countertops and ovens. This overnight dough is easily doubled for pizza parties. Not cooking for a crowd? The raw dough may be frozen. 
Roasted "Reblochon"
Rating: Unrated
New!
In the French Alps, Reblochon, a bloomy-rind cow's milk cheese, is melted in a special brazier for reblochonnade—a meal of the melted cheese served with roasted sausages, boiled potatoes, and other bites. While unpasteurized Reblochon isn't imported to the United States, there are many American farmhouse cheeses (such as Jasper Hill Farm Little Hosmer or Sweet Grass Dairy Green Hill) that make wonderful substitutes in this reblochonnade, adapted by Food & Wine Senior Food Editor Mary-Frances Heck for home ovens.
This festive layered gelatin is a conversation-starting centerpiece and sure to delight potluck guests. The rosy cranberry layer is tart, bursting with cranberries and a splash of gin, and the sparkling wine layer, with a hint of elderflower liqueur, still playfully maintains its bubbles. Spiked with three types of alcohol, this is an adults-only side or dessert. Read more about how this gelatin makes a showstopping addition to your holiday table.
Master this chef-approved method, and say goodbye to soggy fish forever.
Regenerative agriculture promises a happier ecosystem for animals, farmers, and the planet.
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This light stew showcases sweet peppers and bright herbs. The classic cooking method builds flavor while gently cooking the chicken for a light and satisfying summer supper. Serve with polenta and crusty bread for soaking up the garlicky sauce.
Spark’s grill is a glimpse into the future of alfresco prep.
Learn how to fuel and flavor your next cookout with wood, the most elemental of ingredients.
Coal-Roasted Sweet Potatoes
Rating: Unrated
New!
Maximize the life cycle of a fire by cooking hardy vegetables like sweet potatoes directly in the coals. Buried in embers, sweet potatoes become meltingly tender and perfumed with smoky flavor. When they're done, brush away the ashes and any burned skin, leaving charred bits for textural and visual contrast. Crack open the skins, and the smoky flesh becomes the perfect canvas for spicy or sweet seasoned butters, a dollop of sour cream or crème fraîche, or a drizzle of maple syrup.
"Wood can be as essential and impactful an ingredient as fat or salt. As it burns, wood releases chemical compounds that deliver delicious flavors and aromas to food. In this dish, inspired by the cooking of Swedish mushroom forager and chef Elle Nikishkova, applewood and juniper add layers of flavor to oyster and chanterelle mushrooms and rich crème fraîche.  Seasoning the oyster and chanterelle mushrooms with salt and pepper and letting them rest for a long stint in the refrigerator before cooking draws out moisture, helping them caramelize quickly on the grill while staying meaty and tender. When you're ready smoke the mushrooms, place an applewood log alongside coals or place wood chunks directly on coals. For the crème fraîche, place a juniper branch or juniper berries directly onto the coals.
A carbon steel plancha grill instantly elevates weeknight grilling.
Shallow poaching in wine turns salmon fillets into an easy, elegant dinner.