Great Female Chefs
Seared Scallops with Basil, Anchovy and Sweet Corn Pudding
The quality of the seafood is key in this lemony, piquant dish. April Bloomfield recommends seeking out day-boat scallops, caught by fishermen who return from a day at sea with supremely fresh scallops that haven't been treated with any kind of preservative. Instead of being milky white, they're almost coral-colored.
Lamb Meatballs with Red Pepper and Chickpea Sauce
When the meatballs are almost cooked through, Nancy Silverton pushes them to one side of the skillet and adds the ceci (Italian for chickpeas). That way everything soaks up the flavor of the luscious roasted red-pepper sauce.
This pretty salad from Alice Waters, the iconic chef-owner of Chez Panisse in Berkeley, California, is best in the winter, when grapefruit is at its prime.
Carolina Gold Pilau with Shrimp
Traditional Southern cooks make pilau by browning rice in oil, then simmering it in stock. But chef Anne Quatrano cooks sweet, delicate Carolina Gold rice with okra and shrimp to create a satisfying main dish.
Roasted Veal Loin with Pickled Golden Raisins
Suzanne Goin covers this veal roast with herbs and butter before cooking to get extra-rich pan juices. They are delicious spooned over the exceptionally tender meat and served with the sweet roasted garlic cloves.
Hanger Steak with Herb-Nut Salsa
Naomi Pomeroy, an F&W Best New Chef 2009, regards eco-activist Alice Waters as "the center of the vegetable-driven universe." The salsa is a vibrant addition to this simple grilled hanger steak.
Sautéed Chicken with Olives, Capers and Roasted Lemons
This piquant dish from Lidia Bastianich is one of our favorite ways to prepare skinless chicken breasts.
Mixed Seafood Seviche
Michelle Bernstein discovered authentic seviches during a trip to Peru. One of her favorite preparations combines several types of raw seafood with celery, garlic, cilantro, lime juice and lots of salt. The unusual ingredient is ají amarillo, a spicy yellow-pepper paste (sold in tubes) that turns the seviche a bright yellow color. Bernstein prefers to quickly cook most of the seafood with Old Bay seasoning, then add fresh ginger for extra kick.
Farro and Green Bean Salad
"The first time I tasted farro, it changed my life," says Melissa Kelly about the ancient grain that's rich in fiber, complex carbohydrates and magnesium.
Spicy Chicken Cacciatore
Although this Italian standard has suffered at the hands of lesser chefs, Barbara Lynch redeems it. She ably deconstructs what is often a heavy sauce into its vivid components: bright red strips of bell pepper, sweet slices of onion, hot pickled peppers and fresh chopped tomatoes.
Beer-Braised Turkey Tacos
Skinless turkey thighs and drumsticks are packed with flavor; they're also low in fat and high in protein and essential minerals like selenium. Deborah Schneider braises the meat in beer until ultratender, then shreds it for tacos. "It's also fabulous in a sandwich," she says.
Lemon Verbena Tart with Cape Gooseberry Compote
Mary Dumont picks the lemon verbena for this fabulous, puckery tart from her kitchen garden.
Chicken Shawarma with Green Beans and Zucchini
To fill this sandwich wrap, Ana Sortun coats chicken thighs with a lengthy list of spices that includes allspice and nutmeg, then braises them in beer and garlic. An easier way: Rub chicken thighs with the spice mix and roast them in the oven (no beer necessary).
Jody Adams stocks her kitchen with this intensely flavored Egyptian blend of toasted nuts and seeds, traditionally eaten on bread dipped into olive oil. "I like to sprinkle it on salads and stir it into yogurt," she says.
Shrimp and Avocado Salad
Traci Des Jardins created this refreshing salad to showcase one of her favorite Latin ingredients, the avocado. She tasted her first avocado during a visit to her Grandma Salazar in Mexico; she would snack on it at taco and fruit stands on the street, where it is typically served with fresh lime juice and chile salt.
Juicy Buttermilk Pork Chops
"Berkshire pigs have the most wonderful flavor of all the pork I've ever tried," says chef Maria Hines.
Dan Dan Noodles with Pickled Mustard Greens
Choose noodles that have a firm, chewy texture for this dish by Susanna Foo.
Tangy Roasted Chicken Thighs with Artichoke Panzanella
Panzanella, the Italian salad, is typically made with tomatoes, onions and chunks of bread. In her smart version, Koren Grieveson combines grilled bread and sweet broiled tomatoes with marinated baby artichokes before dressing the warm salad with a lemony vinaigrette. It's fabulous served alongside crisp chicken.
Zucchini Ribbons with Cranberry Beans and Pecans
Monica Pope uses the pecans to garnish a salad of quickly grilled zucchini ribbons and creamy-fleshed cranberry beans. Pecan oil enhances the pecans sweet flavor but the dish is equally delicious without it.
Amy Tornquist piles pulled chicken onto soft buns and smothers it under cold, creamy coleslaw.
Chile-Lime Crab Salad with Tomato and Avocado
The mix of fresh crab, avocado and juicy heirloom tomatoes here is a classic combination. But Sue Zemanick makes it seem new by tossing the salad with a vibrant, spicy dressing spiked with jalapeño.
Chinese Noodles with Cockles and Pork
For Suzanne Tracht's noodle dish here, we use marinated pork in place of Chinese sausage.
Corn Bread Stuffing with Shrimp and Andouille
This stuffing by Susan Spicer can be refrigerated for 1 day before baking. Bring to room temperature before baking.
Duck with Miso-Almond Butter
After experimenting with miso paste and flavorful Spanish marcona almonds, Stephanie Izard created a delectable nutty-sweet butter that she serves with meaty seared duck breasts.
Roasted Halibut with Wine-Braised Fennel
Alexandra Guarnaschelli loves to serve raisin-studded braised fennel with a meaty white fish, like halibut, black bass or striped bass. Roasting the large fish fillet whole (rather than in portions) is a great way to serve a small crowd.
Flatbreads with Cucumber Raita
Marcie Turney's raita (a classic Indian yogurt sauce) is a great as a snack on its own or with grilled meat.
Asparagus Soup with Parmesan Shortbread Coins
"I adore savory cheese cookies with creamy asparagus soup," says Carla Hall. "Both are dead simple to make."
Gale Gand's Sugar-Dusted Vanilla Ricotta Fritters
Gale Gand got this recipe from her mother-in-law, Vita Seidita; the fritters are also good sprinkled with cinnamon sugar or dipped in jelly.
Plump Turkey-Stuffed Tofu Dumplings
These dumplings are based on Anita Lo's mother's recipe for ma po tofu, a Chinese stir-fry of tofu and beef or pork. Here, Lo has combined all of the saucy, spicy flavors of that dish into bite-size portions and used turkey instead of beef or pork.
Chicken Salad with Green Goddess Dressing
Nancy Oakes lost more than 20 pounds, in part by eating two to three appetizers instead of one large entrée. To satiate cravings, she picks foods high in heatlhy monosaturated fat, like avocados. Plus, she says, "I brush my teeth a lot because nothing tastes good afterward."