Mushroom Soup with Toasted Bread
Michel Bras purees this lush mushroom soup with bread toasted to a dark brown to thicken the texture and deepen its flavor. He learned the trick from his mother growing up in the Aubrac mountains, one of France's poorest regions. "I used to mix bread crumbs with sugar for a little treat," Bras says. "We were happy with very little."
Caramelized Broccoli with Garlic
Chef David Gingrass swears broccoli haters will love the polarizing green vegetable when it's prepared this way, because it is slowly caramelized to bring out its sweetness, then enlivened with a squeeze of lemon and a pinch of crushed red pepper.
Jicama, Kirby and Carrot Salad with Charred Lamb
With crunchy carrots, cucumbers and bean sprouts and a spiced vinegar dressing, this recipe from star chef Jean-Georges Vongerichten is one of the dishes that launched the Asian-fusion trend in America.
Pizza with Charred Cherry Tomatoes and Pesto
These crisp-crusted individual pies are a much more elegant version are topped with sweet tomatoes, aged Gouda and a little pesto.
Roasted Blue Foot Chickens with Glazed Parsnips and Carrots
Chef David Myers puts brown butter to ingenious use in this showcase for California's succulent Blue Foot chicken. First he drizzles the supermoist bird with brown butter, then sautés root vegetables in the remaining brown butter until they are glazed.
Grilled Citrus Shrimp
Lime, orange and pineapple juices bring lightness and freshness to these tasty grilled shrimp.
Scottish Beef Stew
Nick Nairn says that Scottish beef is some of the best in the world: "Our hardy wee beasts spend most of their time outdoors feeding on grass, and have the minimum amount of human intervention in their rearing." He strongly advises seeking out well-marbled beef for the most tender and succulent stew.
Apricot, Almond and Brown Butter Tart
This dried-apricot tart is crispy and tender, tangy and sweet all at the same time. The recipe also works with fresh apricots; just omit the poaching step.
Charred Fava Bean Salad with Lemon and Tarragon
It's impossible to grill tiny favas, but the sweet-starchy beans get a similar smoky flavor when they're charred quickly in a hot skillet. Jean-Georges Vongerichten tosses the charred beans with garlic, jalapeño, tarragon and cubes of cheese for a warm salad.