The big, bold Southwestern flavors in this shrimp seasoning—which include pure ancho chile powder, smoked paprika, cumin and brown sugar—epitomize Bobby Flay's style. The seasoning mix would also be terrific on pork chops or beef tenderloin.
In his book Braise, Daniel Boulud braises duck legs for several hours until they are meltingly tender and incredibly flavorful. An easier way: Braising chicken in a liquid that combines onions, carrots, bacon and olives creates complex flavor relatively quickly.
As a child, John Besh loved when family friend Mrs. Slaughter made little puff pastry cups and filled them with oysters in cream sauce. In this version, he places the oysters in mini tartlet shells, then tops them with a creamy horseradish sauce and crispy bread crumbs.
To accompany his fresh tuna tacos, chef Aarón Sanchez of New York City's Paladar makes a quick, vinegary, supercrunchy red-onion pickle. It's lovely with the warm, soft tortillas. To bump up the flavors of the tacos even more, he also adds a dash of hot sauce and a healthy squirt of fresh lime juice.
Tim Cushman is a master at preparing raw fish. Here he dresses salmon with a little citrus-soy dressing, then tops it with fresh ginger and chives before bathing it in a hot sesame-oil mixture. The heat from the oil cooks the salmon just slightly, creating a luxurious texture and fragrance.
"My grandpa always used to make pimento cheese for me with sharp cheddar, or even Velveeta," says Katie Lee about the sweet pepper–studded spread, a Southern classic that's also a great dip. "I wanted to make it more grown-up." Katie's goat-cheese version is light and silky.
To jazz up arugula salad and give it a slightly Greek twist, Michael Symon tosses it with chopped fresh dill, briny Greek feta cheese and kalamata olives. He finishes the salad with extra-virgin Greek olive oil, which he says has a pure flavor and is generally more affordable than olive oil from Italy.
In Argentina, a mixed grill is called a parrillada (parrilla means "grill" in Spanish). The dish is served in a rustic style, with whole pieces of meat like chicken hearts and sausage brought to the table. Michelle Bernstein prefers to grill skewers of meat for a more elegant presentation; here she uses chicken livers instead of hearts.
This extraordinarily rich and sweet dessert was the winner at the 1996 State Fair of Texas State pie competition, which Dean Fearing helped judge. "Out of 140 pies, this one was it," he says. "Her name was Bobby Lee; she never told me her last name."
The original recipe for Ryan Hardy's delicious citrusy, nutty and dense cake comes from London's River Café restaurant. He substitutes olive oil for some of the butter and insists that it be served with tangy crème fraîche and an espresso.