Side Dish

Bavarian Sauerkraut

Classic sauerkraut recipe with chopped apple and juniper berries.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 40 minutes

One of our favorite side dishes is hot sauerkraut, delicious served with pork or bockwurst – a mild German sausage.

You can also make a sandwich with toasted or grilled dark rye bread, melted Jack, havarti, or Muenster cheese, the sauerkraut, and avocado.

Ingredients

  • 1 16-oz can or jar of sauerkraut (best is fresh sauerkraut in jars, found in refrigerated section of grocery store)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup peeled and chopped apple
  • 10 juniper berries, cracked
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Ingredients

  • 1 16-oz can or jar of sauerkraut (best is fresh sauerkraut in jars, found in refrigerated section of grocery store)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 1/2 cup chopped onion
  • 1/2 cup peeled and chopped apple
  • 10 juniper berries, cracked
  • Salt and pepper
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil

Method

Place sauerkraut in a pot. Add wine, onion, apple, juniper berries, salt, pepper and oil. Bring to a simmer and let simmer for 30 to 45 minutes, until the onions are soft.

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Creamed Turnips

Mashed, creamed turnips recipe with turnips, milk, butter, cream, cloves, and nutmeg.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 25 minutes
  • Yield: Serve 6-8 as a side dish

People either love turnips or they hate them. And if they love them, it was probably an acquired taste.

I can still remember making a face when thinking I was biting into a yummy potato in one of my mother’s stews I had speared a turnip instead.

Yet this dish is another proof point that almost all things taste better with butter and cream!

We have used older, larger turnips for this recipe. Older turnips are stronger in flavor, more bitter, and drier than young turnips. If you use younger, smaller turnips, they may be sweeter and a bit more watery, so you might want to use less cream. If the turnips are too bitter for your taste, try adding a little sugar at the end to balance the bitter.

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds turnips
  • 6 black peppercorns
  • 6 whole cloves
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus 1 teaspoon
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 Tbsp unsalted butter
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • Freshly grated nutmeg to taste

Method

1 Boil the turnips, then drain: Peel and cut the turnips into large chunks. In a large saucepan of boiling water, add the tablespoon of salt, the peppercorns, cloves and bay leaves.

You may want to tie the spices into a sachet or cheesecloth bag — this makes it easier to remove them later.

Boil turnips until tender, 15 to 20 minutes, then drain and remove the spices.

2 Add cream, simmer, then mash: Return the turnips to the pot they boiled in and add the cream. Turn the burner to medium-low. Bring this to a gentle simmer and mash the turnips with a potato masher.

3 Add seasonings: Add the white pepper, the teaspoon of salt and freshly grated nutmeg to taste and serve at once.

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Cauliflower Purée

Quick and easy puréed cauliflower recipe with sour cream and butter.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

People either really love cauliflower or they really don’t. Those of us in the first camp will enjoy it almost any way – raw, steamed with butter and lemon, or in this case puréed.

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, stem trimmed of leaves, florets roughly chopped (see How to Cut and Core Cauliflower)
  • 1 cup chicken stock, vegetable stock (for vegetarian option), or salted water (if cooking gluten-free, use water or gluten-free stock)
  • 3 Tbsp of sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • Salt and pepper

Ingredients

  • 1 head cauliflower, stem trimmed of leaves, florets roughly chopped (see How to Cut and Core Cauliflower)
  • 1 cup chicken stock, vegetable stock (for vegetarian option), or salted water (if cooking gluten-free, use water or gluten-free stock)
  • 3 Tbsp of sour cream
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • Salt and pepper

Method

1 Boil cauliflower: Place roughly chopped cauliflower in a medium saucepan, add stock. Bring to a boil and reduce heat to a simmer. Cover and cook until the cauliflower is tender, about 10 minutes.

2 Purée cooked cauliflower in blender: Place the cooked cauliflower in a blender. Add a tablespoon or two of the cooking liquid and pulse until smooth, about 15 to 20 seconds.

Add the sour cream and butter, and blend 5 to 10 seconds more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

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Oven-fried Potato Chips

Oven-fried homemade potato chips recipe, made with thin slices of Russet potatoes, butter, and salt.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 20 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

My father, being of German and Austrian descent, loves potatoes, in every form. Years ago, he discovered in an old issue of Gourmet that he could easily make his own potato chips, without having to deep fry them. (Cue clouds parting, sunlight beaming through, and choruses of angels singing Hallelujah!)

Of course from here on out the rest of us were doomed, because these are so good that it’s really hard to not overindulge.

These crispy thin potato slices are just divine. I call them potato chips because they taste like the best potato chips you will ever have. But I suspect that one might not classify them as a chip given their 1/8 inch thickness.

In any case, they are really really good, and like anything really really good probably shouldn’t be eaten more than once or twice a month.

A mandoline is the best way to get the evenly thin slices of potatoes that work well for this recipe.

Ingredients

  • 4 russet potatoes (or 6 Yukon gold potatoes), peeled and sliced diagonally 1/8 inch thick
  • 1/2 stick (1/4 cup) of butter, melted (can use extra virgin olive oil instead)
  • Kosher salt to taste

Method

1 Preheat oven and prepare baking sheet: Preheat oven to 500°F (260°C). Grease 2 large baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray. Make sure you are using sturdy baking sheets, or a flat roasting pan that can take high heat. A standard cookie sheet may warp.

2 Soak potato slices in ice water, pat dry: Place the potato slices in a bowl of ice water for 5 minutes to remove some of the excess starch. Drain. Pat the slices of potatoes dry with paper towels.

3 Put potato slices on baking sheet, brush with butter: Arrange the sliced potatoes in a single layer on the baking sheets. Use a pastry brush to brush the potato slices with melted butter.

4 Bake: Put in the oven and lower the temp to 450°F (230°C). Bake until the edges are golden brown, about 12-15 minutes, depending on your particular oven.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with salt to serve.

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Roasted Zucchini with Garlic

Easy roasted zucchini recipe! How to cook zucchini by cutting lengthwise, oven-roasting with olive oil, garlic, black pepper, and Herbes de Provence.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

One of my Favorite Easy Zucchini Recipes

During the summer, our gardens are filled with more zucchini than we know what to do with, and I hunt down all my zucchini recipes. Here is one quick and easy way of preparing zucchini.

I had a variation of this baked zucchini the other night at a friend’s house and was amazed to hear her children exclaim, “Please give me some zucchini. I love zucchini!” Hello? When was the last time you heard that?

Ingredients

  • 1 lb zucchini, each cut in half across the middle, then each half quartered lengthwise
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic cloves
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Herbes de Provence or dried thyme, or 1 teaspoon of fresh chopped thyme

Ingredients

  • 1 lb zucchini, each cut in half across the middle, then each half quartered lengthwise
  • 1 teaspoon fresh minced garlic cloves
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • Kosher salt
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Herbes de Provence or dried thyme, or 1 teaspoon of fresh chopped thyme

Method

1 Preheat oven: Preheat oven to 450°F. Make sure there is a rack on the top rack spot in the oven.

2 Toss zucchini and garlic with olive oil, spread out onto lined sheet pan: Place the zucchini and garlic in a bowl and toss with olive oil.

Spread the zucchini out onto a foil or silicone-lined sheet pan, skin side down. Sprinkle with salt (1/4 to 1/2 a teaspoon).

3 Roast zucchini: Roast the zucchini at 450°F for 8-15 minutes, or until it begins to brown. (Start checking at about 7 minutes and keep checking every few minutes.)

4 Toss with herbs, salt, pepper: Once the zucchini has started to brown at the edges, remove it from the oven and place the zucchini in a bowl. Gently mix in the herbs and salt and pepper to taste.

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Dad’s Potato Salad

Classic potato salad recipe with boiled Russet potatoes, dill pickles, celery, parsley, red onion, scallions, hard boiled eggs and a mayonnaise Dijon dressing.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4-6

A month ago or so I made some potato salad. I love potato salad and was well pleased with this one.

Then the next week my father made his version of potato salad. It was great too!

The difference? Pickle juice and mustard.

Also he throws in a hard boiled egg once in a while too. Note that getting the recipe out of my parents generated the usual recipe banter.

Dad: “Use Russets.” Mom: “I’ve been making this recipe for years with all kinds of potatoes.” Dad: “Use Russets.”

We’re using Russets in this recipe, which is why it is called, “Dad’s” potato salad.

Ingredients

  • 3 or 4 mid sized Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 4 Tbsp juice from Kosher dill pickles
  • 3 Tbsp finely chopped dill pickles
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 or 2 chopped scallions, including the greens
  • 1-2 hard boiled eggs, chopped (optional)
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, raw or roasted, chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Ingredients

  • 3 or 4 mid sized Russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 4 Tbsp juice from Kosher dill pickles
  • 3 Tbsp finely chopped dill pickles
  • 1/4 cup chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup chopped red onion
  • 2 stalks celery, chopped
  • 1 or 2 chopped scallions, including the greens
  • 1-2 hard boiled eggs, chopped (optional)
  • 1 medium carrot, finely chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 red bell pepper, raw or roasted, chopped (optional)
  • 1/2 cup mayonnaise
  • 2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Method

1 Boil the peeled, cut potatoes: Place peeled, cut potatoes in a large pot. Cover with an inch of salted water. Bring a pot of water to boil.

Simmer for 10-20 minutes until just fork tender. Remove the potatoes from pot. Let the potatoes cool enough to handle, but still warm.

2 Put potatoes in a bowl, add pickle juice, pickles, parsley, onions celery, scallions, hard boiled egg, carrots, bell pepper: Put the potatoes in to a large bowl. Add the juice from the Kosher dill pickles.

Add the finely chopped pickles themselves. Add parsley, onions, celery, scallions and, if using, the hard boiled egg, carrots, and red bell pepper.

3 Mix mayonnaise and mustard, stir into potato mixture, add salt and pepper: In a separate small bowl, mix mayonnaise with mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Mix in the dressing with the potato mixture. Again, salt and pepper to taste.

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Roasted Fennel

Quick and easy roasted fennel recipe. Sliced fennel oven roasted in olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

Fennel is a wonderfully versatile vegetable. It resembles a peeled onion bulb that someone has pressed between their hands so it’s no longer round, with a green celery-like stalk and dill-ish fronds.

It has the cool crunch of celery with a strong note of licorice when you take a bite. It is lovely sliced thin and served with Parmesan in a salad, luscious and filling in a cheesy gratin, and absolutely delicious roasted.

Roasted, fennel caramelizes at the edges and loses its crunch. The licorice notes that were so discernible when the fennel was raw leave only a hint when roasted. Even people who run from anything licorice-ish (like my father) easily enjoy fennel when it is warm and roasted.

This simple dish of fennel roasted with olive oil and balsamic vinegar would be perfect with roast chicken, fish, or seafood.

Ingredients

  • 2 fennel bulbs (thick base of stalk), stalks cut off, bulbs halved lengthwise, then cut lengthwise in 1-inch thick wedges
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons (or more) balsamic vinegar

Ingredients

  • 2 fennel bulbs (thick base of stalk), stalks cut off, bulbs halved lengthwise, then cut lengthwise in 1-inch thick wedges
  • 2 tablespoons (or more) of extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons (or more) balsamic vinegar

Method

1 Toss fennel wedges with olive oil and balsamic: Preheat oven to 400°F (205°C). Place the fennel wedges in a bowl and toss them with 1 to 2 tablespoons of olive oil, just enough to coat them. Sprinkle with balsamic vinegar, again just enough to coat.

2 Roast the fennel: Line a roasting pan or baking dish Silpat or aluminum foil brushed with olive oil.  Arrange the fennel wedges on the pan and roast them at 400°F (205°C) for 40 minutes or until the fennel wedges are cooked through and beginning to caramelize at the edges.

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Cheesy Skillet Cornbread

Cornbread packed with cheese, onions, whole corn, and flavored with bacon drippings. Cooked in a cast iron skillet.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 10 minutes
  • Cook time: 40 minutes
  • Yield: Makes 8 servings

This cornbread is packed with cheese, onions, and whole corn, and flavored with bacon drippings. Need I say more? This recipe is inspired by a favorite of my friend Lynn from her The Southern Living Cookbook. Lynn likes to make hers with Shoepeg white corn. We used regular yellow corn and it turned out terrific. Perfect with chili.

The recipe calls for the corn bread to be baked in the oven in a cast iron skillet. We serve the corn bread at the table directly from the skillet, the benefit being that because the cast iron holds its heat so well, the corn bread stays warm throughout the entire meal.

Recipe updated Oct 12, 2012

Make sure your baking powder is fresh. Baking powder over 6 months old tends to lose its leavening power.

Ingredients

  • 1 cup cornmeal
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup shredded medium or sharp cheddar cheese
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 Tbsp bacon drippings (warmed to liquid), plus 1 teaspoon to grease the pan
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3/4 cup of cooked corn, either fresh, defrosted frozen corn, or drained from a can

Method

1 Place a 9 or 10-inch cast iron pan in the oven and preheat the oven to 350°F.

2 In a large bowl, whisk together the cornmeal, flour, baking powder, sugar, garlic powder, and salt. Add remaining ingredients, and stir until just combined.

3 Carefully remove the hot pan from the oven (remember the handle is hot!). Place a teaspoon of bacon fat in the bottom of the hot pan and swirl it around until it is all melted and coating the bottom of the pan. Pour the batter from the mixing bowl into the pan. Remember to put a pot holder over the hot handle of the pan and return it to the oven.

4 Bake for 40 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven and let the cornbread cool in the pan. Remember that the handle is hot and will stay hot for quite some time. I recommend rubbing an ice cube over the handle to cool it down, just to avoid someone burning their hand if they attempt to move the pan before it has cooled down enough.

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Collard Greens

Fresh collard greens cooked with onion, garlic, chile pepper flakes, bacon fat, and dark sesame oil. Learn how to cook collard greens with this basic recipe.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 5 minutes
  • Cook time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

My brother Eddie was over for dinner a while ago one fortuitous night when we happened to be having collard greens. I say fortuitous because Ed introduced us to a wonderful new way to serve these healthful, somewhat bitter greens—with barbecue sauce.

Huh? Barbecue sauce?

Ed explained that whenever he had collard greens it was with barbecued ribs, and the sauce from the ribs would make its way over to the collard greens, making them taste oh so good. Well, that was enough incentive to try it, and I must agree, collard greens are excellent served with a little BBQ sauce.

They are also pretty good on their own with onions and garlic. Here’s a great base recipe, feel free to add the BBQ sauce!

How to Make Collard Greens

We use bacon fat here primarily for flavor. Bacon fat provides an excellent balance to the natural bitter of the collard greens. That said, you can easily skip the bacon fat and just use a little more olive oil.

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs collard greens, tough stems discarded, leaves chopped
  • 2 Tbsp medium onion, chopped
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • 2 teaspoons bacon fat
  • 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbsp dark sesame oil (Dynasty or comparable)
  • Chili pepper flakes, a pinch
  • Salt, a couple pinches
  • Sugar, a couple pinches
  • Barbecue sauce (optional)

Method

1 Cook onions and garlic: Use a large skillet with a tight fitting cover. Melt bacon fat and heat olive oil on medium heat.

Sauté onion until transparent, a couple of minutes.

Add garlic and and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds.

2 Mix in the greens, sesame oil, chili pepper flakes, salt, and sugar. Cover and cook until tender, 8-15 minutes. (Note that young collard greens will cook up relatively quickly. Older greens may take upwards of 45 minutes to tenderize.)

If you want, serve with barbecue sauce.

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Kale with Seaweed, Sesame and Ginger

Wilted kale recipe with arame seaweed, garlic, sesame, and fresh minced ginger.

Ready in:

  • Prep time: 15 minutes
  • Cook time: 15 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

Living for a while in Japan does strange things to your food preferences.

Instead of thinking, “eating seaweed? PHEW!” one gets a warm glow and a faraway look in one’s eyes thinking, “Eating seaweed? Ahhh. Yummm.

Which kind do I want? Some sautéed hijiki? Crumpled nori with sesame and shoyu over rice? How about some silky wakame soup?”

So when I saw a kale seaweed salad at a local Whole Foods deli counter, I was all over it.

It was wonderful! The kale, ginger, sesame, seaweed and seasoning worked so well together.

Not telling my father what was in it, other than kale, I got him to try some. “That’s great! Make some!” was his response, not caring one whit after I told him all that was in it.

Dinosaur Kale (Lacinato Kale)

If my 75 year old, midwestern, meat-and-potatoes father can gobble up this dish, anyone can.

When you buy seaweed in the market, typically it is dried. You’ll first need to hydrate it by soaking it in some water. We are using “arame” seaweed, which is fairly common; you could also easily use hijiki. I like to use either Eden or Emerald Cove brands.

We are using lacinato kale, aka dinosaur kale, for this recipe because it is a little more tender than regular kale, but either will work.

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup dried arame sea vegetables (food-grade seaweed)
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoons dark (roasted) sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 bunch kale (we used dinosaur kale)
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce (can sub with Bragg Liquid Aminos)
  • 1 Tbsp Toasted sesame seeds

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup dried arame sea vegetables (food-grade seaweed)
  • 3 Tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoons dark (roasted) sesame oil
  • 1 Tbsp peeled and minced ginger
  • 1 bunch kale (we used dinosaur kale)
  • 1 Tbsp minced garlic
  • 1 Tbsp soy sauce (can sub with Bragg Liquid Aminos)
  • 1 Tbsp Toasted sesame seeds

Method

1 Prepare the seaweed: Rinse the seaweed in water and let soak, covered in water for 5-7 minutes.

Drain seaweed and place in a large bowl. Add 1 teaspoon of dark sesame oil and the minced ginger.

2 Prepare kale by soaking in water to loosen any dirt, rinsing thoroughly. Chop cross-wise into 1-inch by 2-inch pieces.

3 Sauté garlic, then seaweed and ginger: In a large covered skillet, uncover and heat 1 Tbsp of vegetable oil on medium heat. Add garlic and gently sauté for one minute, until fragrant. Add the seaweed and ginger, gently cook for 1 minute. Remove seaweed/ginger/garlic from pan back to the bowl and set aside.

4 Sauté kale: Add another 1 Tbsp oil to the skillet. When the oil is hot, add the chopped kale. Add 1 Tbsp soy sauce. Gently mix in the pan to coat the kale with the oil and soy sauce. Cover; lower heat to low; let cook for 5-10 minutes or until kale is wilted – soft enough to eat easily, but not so soft as to be mushy.

Remove cover and let cook a minute more to evaporate any excess moisture. Remove from heat.

5 Mix in the kale with the seaweed ginger mixture. Add more dark sesame oil and soy sauce to taste. Garnish with toasted sesame seeds.

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