November 8, 2016 - Radio Kitchen - Liz Nuttle and Seasonings for Stews
This is the season of the big stew pot, of big hearty dishes that inevitably call for a big hot loaf of crusty bread on the side. It's a pleasure to stroll up and down the aisles of the farmers markets in the Fall, mentally putting together recipes with the ingredients that are right there at hand.
And as Chef Jerry Pellegrino of Schola Cooking School has pointed out, sometimes the only thing that separates an ordinary dish from a masterpiece is the seasoning...which is why we invited our good friend Liz Nuttle of EN Olivier to be with us today.
If you haven't been to EN Olivier (1407 Clarkview Road, which is actually on Falls Road, right across from Princeton Sports) you should make checking it out a priority. This is paradise for the serious cook. The idea behind EN Olivier is simple: assemble barrels of the world's best olive oils and balsamic vinegars and let your customers sample them to zero in on their favorites.
She not only has the pure oils and vinegars but a bevy of infused versions that have wonderfully provocative flavors. In addition Liz has a wide assortment of salts, peppers, spices and other goodies that you'll come to realize you desperately need.
Liz's vinegars in particular are guaranteed to spark the imagination of any dedicated home cook. During the Fall, when we do start preparing big pots of bubbling food, a little dollop of the right balsamic vinegar can change a dish for the better, and produce a richer rounder flavor.
Here are three recipes (two from Liz and one from Al) that demonstrate our point.
Inspired by The Silver Palate
For the marinade:
- 1/4 cup red wine vinegar
- 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 4 large cloves garlic - chopped
- 1 Tbsp dried oregano
- coarse salt & freshly ground pepper to taste
- 1/2 cup pitted prunes
- 1/3 cup pitted green olives
- 1/4 cup capers with a bit of brine
- 3 bay leaves
- 1 whole chicken quartered with skin OR
- 6 whole chicken thigh/drumsticks
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
1. In a medium bowl combine the red wine vinegar, the balsamic vinegar and the olive oil. Add to the bowl the garlic, oregano, salt & pepper, prunes, olives, capers with brine and bay leaves. Immerse the cut up chicken in the marinade, cover and let it marinate in refrigerator overnight, turning the pieces of chicken a couple times for even soaking.
2 The next day, preheat oven to 350 degrees. Arrange chicken in a single layer in a baking dish. Spoon marinade, with the prunes and olives, over chicken evenly. Sprinkle chicken pieces with brown sugar & pour white wine around them.
3. Bake 50 minutes to an hour, basting frequently. Test doneness with a fork, until juices run clear. Transfer chicken to a platter, spoon remaining juices over chicken, sprinkle with parsley and serve.
Beef Stew with Carrots & Potatoes and Balsamic Vinegar
- 3 Lbs boneless beef chuck, cut into 1-1/2” pieces
- coarse salt & freshly ground pepper
- flour for dredging
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 medium onions coarsely chopped
- 4 large cloves garlic - chopped
- 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 1-1/2 Tbsp tomato paste
- 2 Tbsp flour
- 2 cups dry red wine
- 2 cups organic beef broth or bone broth
- 2 cups water
- 1 bay leaf
- 1/2 tsp dried thyme
- 2 tsp balsamic vinegar
- 4 large carrots cut into 1” pieces on diagonal
- 1 Lb baby Yukon potatoes, cut in half
- fresh parsley for garnish
1. Pat beef dry and dredge with flour salt and pepper. In a large Dutch oven, heat 1 Tbsp olive oil over medium heat. Add 1/3 of the meat at a time and brown (5-7 minutes). Transfer browned meat to a plate and repeat until all meat is nicely browned. Set aside.
2. Add onions to pot and sauté about three minutes. Add garlic, 2 Tbsp balsamic vinegar and stir to deglaze pot, scraping up the brown bits.
3. Add tomato paste, beef with juices, flour and a splash of broth, stirring until flour is dissolved.
4. Add wine, the rest of the beef broth, water, bay leaf, thyme and additional balsamic vinegar. Bring to boil then turn down to simmer. Cover pot with lid and simmer for about 2 hours stirring periodically. Add carrots and potatoes, simmer an additional hour or until vegetable and meat are tender. Adjust salt and pepper to taste if necessary.
Serve with a hearty loaf of crusty bread and a side salad. This dish becomes even better the next day.
Roasted Root Vegetables with White Balsamic Vinegar
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and cut on the bias
- 1 large or 2 smaller parsnips, peeled and cut on the bias
- 1 medium sweet potato, peeled, and cubed
- 2 medium beets, peeled and cubed
- 1 medium sweet yellow onion, peeled and cut into chunks
- olive oil
- sea salt
- freshly ground black pepper
- fine quality white balsamic vinegar
- Herbes de Provence
1. Pre-heat oven to 425°. Arrange the cut up vegetables in a single layer on a non-stick cookie sheet with sides.
2. Sprinkle olive oil liberally over the vegetables, and toss with a fork to get them equally covered. Sprinkle sea salt and black pepper on the vegetables.
3. Roast in the oven for about 30 minutes, or until the edges of the vegetables just start to turn dark.
4. Divide roasted vegetables on serving plates. Season again with sea salt and black pepper. Drizzle white balsamic vinegar on the vegetables, and garnish with the Herbes de Provence.