Lake Charles Dirty Rice

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This recipe appears at just about every occasion in Cajun Country. Whether it’s a holiday, funeral, family reunion, or potluck dinner, you can bet there will be at least one form of dirty rice or rice dressing. At the Link family reunion in Robert’s Cove, I counted six versions, all different. The essential ingredients are few, but flavor and texture vary greatly. The main difference between dirty rice and rice dressing is that rice dressing is generally made with ground beef or pork, whereas dirty rice is made with pork and chicken livers. Many people think they don’t like liver, but when it’s balanced with other flavors, the liver taste is not overpowering. I’ve served this deeply flavored rice to many people who claim they hate liver, only to have them love it.›


Tah Dig (Persian Rice)

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When you think of a Persian feast, what comes to mind? Kebabs, stews, yogurts, fruit? An abundance of saffron? And rice, always rice. No Persian meal is complete without it, and the crowning glory of Persian rice is tahdig.

Tahdig (pronounced tah-DEEG) is a crispy, browned layer of rice formed at the bottom of a pot by frying parboiled rice to a crisp while the rice on top steams. Louisa Shafia, Persian food expert and winner of the 2014 Piglet, says that “practically every rice-eating culture” has a variation of tahdig (Korean nurungji, Dominican concón, Spanish socarrat, Chinese guo ba, etc.).


Apple and Quinoa Salad

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This is a recipe from the Washington Local and Seasonal Cookbook – that was given to me by my sister for my 49th bday. It features recipes using local ingredients of Washington state, by season. This is a Fall salad – that has lots of different flavors and great crunch going on with the combo of crisp apples, fresh corn kernels, dried cranberries, toasted pecans and fresh herbs.


Seafood Newburg

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4 tablespoons unsalted butter

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

1 egg yolk

1 cups light cream

1/4 cup dry sherry, such as fino or amontillado

1 teaspoon – 1 tablespoon sweet paprika

pinch of dry mustard

Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg

1/4 pound sea scallops, halved horizontally

1/4 pound haddock or hake fillet, skinned and cut into 1 1/2-inch pieces

1/4 pound medium shrimp, shelled and deveined

1/4 pound cooked lobster meat, cut into bite-size pieces

Salt and freshly ground pepper


Grilled Cobb Salad

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For a simple summer salad, grill vegetables of your choice and serve with a hearty grain, such as quinoa or farro. This version, created by editor-in-chief Adam Rapoport, goes great with a vinaigrette created by his wife, Simone Shubuck. Get the recipe here.


French Lentil Soup

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3 tablespoons Extra-virgin olive oil

2 cup chopped onions

1 cup chopped celery stalks plus chopped celery leaves for garnish

1 cup chopped carrots

2 garlic cloves, chopped

4 cups (or more) vegetable broth

1 1/4 cups lentils, rinsed, drained

1 14 1/2-ounce can diced tomatoes in juice

Balsamic vinegar (optional)


Lentil Soup with Broccoli Rabe

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Cook the broccoli rabe in a separate pan, not in the soup pot. That way, any excess bitterness from the vegetable goes down the drain with the cooking water rather than into the soup. You’ll find, though, that a bit of bite enlivens the lentils.