I love it when my husband cooks, but he has a habit of using a pot or pan on every burner of the stove that drives me a little crazy.
One small saute pan for the vegetables, a pot in which to boil the pasta or grain, a third to cook the meat and maybe even a fourth for gravy or sauce.
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Brown Rice and White Beans with Shiitakes and Spinach
This homey pilaf is infinitely versatile, not to mention free of gluten and soy. Instead of rice, you can make it with quinoa, wheat berries or bulgur. You can also swap out the white beans for cooked lentils, black-eyed peas or chopped seitan. Or add some heat with a minced jalapeño.
— Robin Robertson
1 Tbsp. olive oil or 1/4 cup water
1 large sweet onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
8 oz. shiitake mushrooms, stemmed and sliced (about 2 cups)
1 1/4 cups brown rice
2 cups vegetable broth
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 scallions, chopped
8 oz. (about 8 cups) fresh baby spinach
1 1/2 cups cooked white beans or 1 (15.5-oz.) can white beans, drained and rinsed
1 Tbsp. minced fresh dill or basil
Heat the oil or water in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until soft, about 7 minutes. Add the garlic and mushrooms and cook about 3 minutes or until the mushrooms are tender. Stir in the rice and cook, stirring, for 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in the vegetable broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat, season with salt and pepper to taste, cover, and simmer for 35 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Uncover, and add the scallions and spinach, stirring until the spinach wilts. Stir in the beans and dill. Cook for 5 minutes longer, or until the broth is absorbed and the rice is tender. Taste and adjust the seasonings if needed. Serve hot. Serves 4.
— From “One-Dish Vegan: More than 150 Soul-Satisfying Recipes for Easy and Delicious One-Bowl and One-Plate Dinners” by Robin Robertson (Harvard Common Press, $16.95)
Spanish Chicken with Chorizo and Garlic
Years ago I spent a month winding around the railways of Spain, stopping where the guidebooks spoke of traditional plazas, museums and fine Spanish cuisine. My memory holds Seville in particular esteem. It must have been to do with the heavily laden orange trees and a supper eaten while watching university students pour out of the library at the most ungodly of hours. I remember eating something similar to this dish and have tried to re-create it, as closely as scribbled notes written by candlelight will allow. Ole!
— Georgina Fuggle
1 Tbsp. olive oil
6 large free-range chicken thighs, with bones and skin
7 oz. cooking chorizo, cut into 1/2- to 3/4-inch chunks
1 onion, cut into thin wedges
2 medium leeks, chopped into 3/4- to 1 1/4-inch pieces
1 tsp. Spanish smoked paprika (unsmoked is fine, too)
A pinch of saffron threads
2 whole heads of garlic, cut in half horizontally and left unpeeled
4 sprigs of thyme
1/2 cup sweet white wine
1 cup hot chicken stock
2 (15-oz.) cans organic lima beans, drained and rinsed
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
In a large casserole dish, heat the olive oil until smoking hot. Cook the chicken legs on both sides until they are crisp and golden, then transfer to a waiting plate. Keep the heat on high and add the chorizo chunks to the pot. Fry for a minute on each side and remove from the casserole with a slotted spoon so as to leave their oil behind.
Add the onion, leeks, and smoked paprika and sauté in the delicious chorizo oil. Reduce the heat, cover, and soften the vegetables, 3 to 4 minutes, but check they don’t catch on the bottom of the pot.
Add the saffron, garlic halves, thyme, wine, and chicken stock to the pot along with the chicken and chorizo. Season well, cover, and simmer over medium heat for 30 minutes. Let the pot do the work; yours is almost done.
Stir in the lima beans and cook for another 10 minutes before serving with a baked potato or two. Serves 6.
— From “Take One Pot: Super Simple Recipes Cooked in One Pot, Full Stop” by Georgina Fuggle (Kyle Books, $22.95)
Peanut Butter and Jam Bars
Peanut butter and jelly reminds me of Jones Beach on Long Island, N.Y. During the summer, my grandmother used to pack these sandwiches each time we went to the beach, which lucky for us was only a short drive away. After getting sunburned and knocked over by waves, they were delicious, and if you could manage to eat them minus the sand from your hands, it was even better. These bars are bursting with peanut butter in both the crust and the crumbs, and the black currant jam is a twist on the usual grape jelly. Feel free to sub in your own favorite jam. Wrap well and store at room temperature up to four days.
— Yvonne Ruperti
For the crust:
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup packed light brown sugar
3/4 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. baking soda
16 Tbsp. softened unsalted butter, plus more for greasing the pan
1/3 cup chunky peanut butter
For the filling:
1 cup chunky peanut butter
8 Tbsp. unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup confectioners’ sugar
2 tsp. vanilla extract
2/3 cup jam, such as black currant or grape
Place an oven rack in the middle position. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Lightly butter a 9-inch square baking pan.
To make the crust: In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and baking soda. Add the butter and peanut butter, then mix with your hands until the mixture forms moist crumbs. Reserve 1 cup and set aside. Firmly press the remaining mixture into the bottom of the pan. Bake until golden, about 20 minutes.
Let the crust cool slightly while you prepare the filling.
Using the same large bowl, stir together the peanut butter, butter, confectioners’ sugar, vanilla and salt until combined and smooth. Spread over the baked crust. Drop tablespoons of jam onto the peanut butter filling and then use a butter knife to swirl the two together. Scatter the reserved crumbs over the top. Bake until the crumbs are deep golden brown and the filling is almost set, about 25 minutes. Set the pan on a wire rack to cool. Cut into bars while still warm. Cool completely before serving. Makes 16 (2-inch) bars.
— From “One Bowl Baking: Simple, From Scratch Recipes for Delicious Desserts” by Yvonne Ruperti (Running Press, $22)