weeknight gourmet

Posts Tagged ‘Emeril Lagasse’

Easter Egg Overload? Time for some Deviled Eggs!

IMG_1292Lots of leftover Easter eggs?  Deviled eggs are always a crowd pleaser…or so I have heard.  I wrongly assumed I wouldn’t like deviled eggs because I didn’t care for the hard-boiled yolk.  But Tim loves deviled eggs so I decided to give them a try.  YUM!  I’ve been missing out.

I followed Emeril’s recipe (below), using my new favorite hot sauce Frank’s.  There is a nice little kick from the mustard and hot sauce!

In case you are wondering how to make the perfect hard-boiled egg, here is a good recipe to follow.  But the perfectly cooked hard-boiled egg is stickier and harder to peel.  Not he ideal solution for decorating Easter eggs, but here is a tip for easier peeling so your deviled eggs look as good as they taste.  Slightly crack the egg before you put the cooked egg in an ice bath.

Now all I need is one of those cute deviled egg trays!
Deviled Eggs
Emeril Lagasse

  • 6 eggs, hard boiled, cooled, and peeled
  • 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon white wine vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped chives
  • Hot pepper sauce
  • Paprika
  • Salt and pepper
  • Variation: add 1 teaspoon chopped canned jalapeno peppers
  • 4 radicchio leaves, for garnish
  • 3 parsley sprigs, for garnish
Place the cooked egg yolks in a bowl. Using a fork, work the mayonnaise, mustard, vinegar, chives, and salt and pepper into the yolks to form a smooth paste. Taste. Place 1/2 of this mixture in a small pastry bag with a large star tip. To the remaining mixture, add the jalapenos and season with Hot pepper sauce. Fill 6 of the egg halves with the basic filling. Fill the pastry bag with the jalapeno filling. Fill the remaining egg white halves. Top with paprika. Place on a platter on the radicchio leaves, and parsley sprigs.

Rigatoni with Broccoli & Sausage

Sorry for the Weeknight Gourmet hiatus!  I was a bit under the weather and then was on vacation!  We had a great time in Vail, Colorado.  But, after a over a week of dining out, I was very excited to cook a meal at home!

The latest Everyday Food magazine greeted me upon our return and I couldn’t resist the cover recipe, Rigatoni with Sausage and Broccoli.

The recipe is super easy and has great flavor from the sausage and the lemon-anchovy-garlic oil.  I know some people shy away from anchovies but they provide a great salty flavor.

The dish was a hit!  I plan to make it again.

Rigatoni with Broccoli & Sausage
Everyday Food

  • 1 lb rigatoni
  • 2 heads broccoli, cut into florets (about 4 cups)
  • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest, plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 4 anchovy fillets, minced
  • 1 lb sweet Italian sausage, casings removed
  • Grated parmesan

Cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, adding broccoli the last 2 minutes of cooking time. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid.

Meanwhile, in a small bowl, combine the oil, garlic, lemon zest and juice, anchovies, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper.

Cook sausage in a pan over medium heat, breaking up with a wooden spoon, until cooked through. Add broccoli and pasta plus oil mixture. Toss well, adding enough pasta cooking liquid to make a thin sauce.

Serve sprinkled with Parmesan.

Meatloaf with a Kick!

Who doesn’t love meatloaf?!  It’s a perfect dinner as the cool fall weather arrives.  The Barefoot Contessa Turkey Meatloaf is my go-to but I decided to try a beef – pork version and came across this Emeril recipe.  Looked up my alley with the added kick from the chorizo, chili sauce and creole seasoning!

I forgot my shopping list at home so I ended up making a fair number of substitutions.  I used a meatball mix (beef, pork and veal); seasoned breadcrumbs with some red pepper flakes added because I did not have any creole seasoning; whole milk instead of the heavy cream; and, hot Italian sausage instead of chorizo because I could only find smoked chorizo.

I served the meatloaf with pureed cauliflower for a great fall dinner.  The meatloaf was delicious even with my multitude of changes!  I will definitely make it again and am curious how it will turn out if I am more faithful to the recipe.

Mr. John’s Meatloaf
Emeril Lagasse for Everyday Food

  • 1 pound ground beef chuck
  • 1/2 pound ground pork
  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup plain dried breadcrumbs
  • 1 green bell pepper (ribs and seeds removed), finely chopped
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • Coarse salt and ground pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Emeril’s Creole Seasoning
  • 8 ounces fresh chorizo sausage (not smoked)
  • 1/2 cup bottled chili sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil; set aside. In a large bowl, combine beef, pork, eggs, onion, breadcrumbs, bell pepper, cream, 1 1/4 teaspoons salt, 1/2 teaspoon pepper, and Creole Seasoning. Gently mix to combine (do not overmix).

Place half of meat mixture on prepared sheet; form into a 9-by-4-inch loaf. Using a paring knife, remove casing from chorizo (keeping the shape intact). Place chorizo lengthwise down center of loaf. Cover with rest of meat mixture, enclosing the chorizo and patting to adhere.

Brush chili sauce over meatloaf. Bake, basting occasionally with pan juices, until an instant-read thermometer inserted in center of loaf registers 160 degrees, about 1 hour. Let rest 15 minutes before serving.

Elegant Weeknight Meal: Mustard Crusted Rack of Lamb & Broccolini with Olives and Capers

Here are two great recipes for weeknight entertaining or for a special meal for you and your love.  Rack of lamb sounds complicated but is surprisingly quick and easy to make.

Luckily, I married a fellow lamb lover.  Not everyone likes lamb.  But I am a firm believer that if someone who likes beef and pork claims they don’t like lamb, they just haven’t had well prepared lamb.  It is by far my favorite meat!

The key to really delicious rack of lamb is to sear it on both sides and to then cook it in the oven at a relatively high temperature (425 degrees).  In this recipe after searing the lamb, you smear Dijon mustard and crushed garlic on the rack and then press a bread crumb – parmesan combo on top.  So much flavor!!  This recipe and the Lamb Chops with Pistachio Tapenade are now my go-to lamb recipes!

Broccolini is a great and easy side dish.  I think it has a better texture than regular broccoli and will be more interesting to your guests.  After cooking the broccolini, you toss it with a olive oil, garlic, olive, and caper mixture.  Simple and delicious!

Tim and I enjoyed our meal with a wonderful Châteauneuf-du-Pape that we received as a gift.  A surprisingly tasty end to a typical Tuesday!

Mustard Crusted Rack of Lamb
Emeril Lagasse

  • 1 rack of lamb, trimmed (about 1 1/2 pounds)
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/4 cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon grated Parmesan

Season rack of lamb well on all sides with salt and pepper. Heat a medium skillet over high heat and, when hot, add the oil. When the oil is almost smoking, add the rack of lamb and brown well on all sides, about 6 minutes. Transfer the lamb to a plate and set aside to cool slightly before proceeding.

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F.

Using the back of a spoon, spread the mustard evenly over all sides of the lamb. Spread the minced garlic over the lamb in the same manner.

In a small mixing bowl combine the breadcrumbs and grated cheese and toss to thoroughly combine. Using your hands or a spoon, spread the breadcrumb mixture evenly all over the lamb, pressing so that the crumbs adhere to the meat.

Place the rack of lamb on a baking sheet and bake for 12 to 15 minutes for medium-rare. Allow lamb to sit for 5 to 10 minutes before carving into chops to serve.

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Broccolini with Olives & Capers
Fine Cooking

  • 4 medium bunches broccolini (2 to 2-1/2 lb.)
  • 6 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsp. minced garlic
  • 2 Tbs. chopped pitted kalamata olives
  • 2 Tbs. chopped capers (rinse only if salt-packed)
  • Freshly ground black pepper

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the broccolini and stir to separate the stems. When the water returns to a boil, adjust the heat to a simmer and cook until crisp tender, 4 to 5 minutes. Drain well. (The broccolini may be prepared to this point up to 1 day ahead and refrigerated.)

Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook until softened, about 1 minute, taking care not to let it get any color. Add the olives and capers and cook for 1 minute more. Add the broccolini and toss to coat. If the broccolini was cooked ahead, keep tossing until heated through. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and serve.

Easy Summer Sides: Asian Slaw

We had our friends Pam and Tony over last week to meet Charlotte. I decided to make dinner but wanted to prepare it ahead of time. I made Barefoot Contessa’s Chinese Chicken Salad which everyone loved and served an Asian Slaw on the side.

I love using coleslaw mix as a base. All the prep work is done for you!  Tony said this was the best coleslaw he ever had. I thought it was delicious and the flavors complemented the chicken salad well.

The recipe calls for you to make much more of the soy glaze than you need.  Save it!  I used the leftover glaze the next night. I marinated some sushi-grade tuna in it and then seared the tuna.  I served the tuna with the remaining sauce on the side.  I roasted some asparagus for a simple, healthy and delicious meal.  Yum!

Asian Slaw
Adapted from Emeril Lagasse

  • 1/4 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 bag of coleslaw mix
  • 1/4 minced green onions
  • 1/2 cup sliced red onion
  • 1/4 cup vegetable or peanut oil
  • 3 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons toasted sesame oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds

In a very small saucepan combine the soy sauce and the sugar and cook until reduced to a syrup, 2 to 3 minutes. (Be careful not to burn; this cooks quickly!) The soy-sugar mixture should coat the back of a spoon. Set aside to cool completely. When cooled, add 1 1/2 tablespoons of the soy glaze to the mayonnaise and refrigerate until ready to use. Reserve remaining soy glaze for another use.

Combine the slaw, minced green onions, the red onion, the vegetable oil, rice wine vinegar, sesame oil, the salt, and crushed red pepper, and toss thoroughly to combine.

Transfer to a serving bowl and sprinkle with the toasted sesame seeds.

Meatless Monday: Basil Pesto

On one of my excursions to Chelsea Market, I picked up a couple of bunches of gorgeous basil.  I was buying something else but the fragrant basil leaves called to me and I couldn’t help but buy some!

I decided to make pesto because it is a great make-ahead item.  I could make a batch and use some the same day and freeze the rest for a later date.  We were having my brother and his family over and were planning on having a simple barbecue — hamburgers and hot dogs.  I had bought a bunch of salads but wanted to make something.  So I decided to toss some of the pesto with whole wheat penne for a simple pasta salad.  I chilled the pasta salad and everyone loved it!

I followed the pesto recipe below which is a pretty typical basil pesto recipe but I doubled it so I would have some leftover for the freezer.  I actually intend to defrost the pesto this week, marinade some chicken breasts in the pesto, and grill them up on my grill pan for a quick and easy dinner.


Pesto alla Genovese
Emeril Lagasse

  • 1 1/2 cups fresh basil leaves (packed)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/4 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 2 tablespoons pine nuts or walnuts, toasted
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 pound dried or fresh farfalle pasta

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the basil, salt, and pepper and process for a few seconds until the basil is chopped. Add the cheese, pine nuts, and garlic and, while the processor is running, add the oil in a thin, steady stream until a mostly smooth sauce is formed. Transfer pesto to a bowl and set aside. (Note: Pesto may be made 1 day in advance and kept, refrigerated, in an airtight container, until ready to use. If making in advance, be sure to cover the top of the pesto with a thin layer of olive oil to prevent the pesto from darkening. Pesto may also be frozen in the same manner in small quantities for use at a later date.)

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, according to package directions, until al dente. Drain pasta, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking liquid. In a large bowl, toss pasta with pesto. Add a little of the reserved cooking liquid if pasta seems to dry. Serve immediately.

Charlotte's Boursin Roasted Chicken

I can’t believe this chicken recipe didn’t make it to the blog in 2009!  Both Tim and I love it and I have made it for a number of dinner guests who all seem to have enjoyed it as well.

The recipe is great because it only requires a whole chicken and two packages of Boursin cheese.  How easy is that!  The cheese imparts amazing flavor to the chicken and produces a very tasty sauce for the chicken and the pureed cauliflower I typically serve as a side.

The store was out of the traditional Garlic & Fine Herbs Boursin so I bought the Shallot & Chive Boursin.  The chicken was just as delicious with this flavor of Boursin!

Despite the somewhat ugly photo below, I am sure this chicken recipe will become a staple in your kitchen once you try it!

Charlotte’s Boursin Roasted Chicken
Emeril Lagasse

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 (3 1/2 to 4-pound) whole chicken
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 (5.2-ounce) packages garlic and fines herbs flavor cheese spread (recommended: Boursin)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Coat the bottom of a roasting pan or shallow casserole dish with the oil.

Rinse the chicken well under cold running water and pat dry with paper towels. Season the chicken well, inside and out, with salt and pepper. Place the chicken in the prepared roasting pan and place 1 whole block of cheese inside the cavity of the chicken. Cut the remaining block of cheese into fourths and pat 1/4 of the cheese spread over the breast portion of the chicken. Allow the remaining 3/4 of the block of cheese to sit out at room temperature while the chicken is roasting.

Place the roasting pan in the center of the oven. After about 10 minutes, once the cheese has softened and begun to melt on the top of the chicken, remove the pan from the oven, and using the back of a spoon, spread the Boursin all over the chicken. Return the pan to the oven and roast for 25 minutes, until the chicken is golden brown on top.

Remove the pan from the oven and turn the chicken over so the back is now facing up. A small amount of cheese will probably begin to ooze out of the chicken cavity at this point, so take a bit of it and spread it all over the back side of the chicken. Return the pan to the oven and roast until the back side of the chicken is golden brown, about 25 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven one more time. Reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees F and turn the chicken over again, so the breast is once again facing up. Continue to cook until the chicken is done, 20 to 30 more minutes. Test for doneness by inserting a knife at one thigh joint and making sure that the juices run clear.

Remove the chicken from the oven and transfer to a platter or cutting board. Set aside, loosely covered with aluminum foil. Carefully remove and discard as much rendered fat from the roasting pan as possible. Add 1/2 cup hot water and the remaining cheese to the roasting pan. Remove any remaining melted cheese from the cavity of the chicken and add to the roasting pan.

Carve the chicken into serving pieces, allowing the juices from the chicken to run onto the platter. Add the juices to the roasting pan and mix well with the Boursin, drippings, and water. Serve the sauce spooned over the carved chicken.

Serves 4.

Asian-Style Braised Short Ribs

Tim and I are back in the Berkshires with our amazing beef stash.  Last night, I decided to make braised short ribs — a perfect dish for a cold winter night!

I can still remember when I first fell in love with braised short ribs.  We were living in Boston and I had the most delicious short ribs on my 27th birthday at Mistral, a wonderful restaurant in the South End.  I often order short ribs when I see them on a menu, but short ribs are also easy to make at home.  They just take time — typically a few hours — because they need to be braised.  This is definitely not a weeknight meal!

I was excited by this Emeril recipe because I think Asian flavors go beautifully with braised meats.  And, this dish did not disappoint!  The meat was incredibly tender and had a wonderful sweetness and spiciness to it.

Most braising recipes require you to sear the meat on the stove top before you add the liquid and put the dish in the oven.  In this recipe, you just mix the liquid ingredients, add the short ribs, and place in the over for 3 hours.  There is very little prep work.

I served the short ribs with jasmine rice (which was a bit overcooked) and steamed broccolini.  We used the extra short rib sauce on the rice and vegetable.  Yum!

I definitely need to develop a better technique for skimming the fat off of a dish like this.  The more fat you skim off the liquid after you remove the short ribs, the better the sauce will be!

This recipe is definitely a keeper!

Asian-Style Braised Short Ribs
Emeril Lagasse

  • 5 pounds beef short ribs, cut into 4-ounce portions
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1/4 cup rice wine vinegar
  • 3 cloves garlic, peeled and smashed
  • 1 (5-inch) stalk lemongrass, halved and smashed
  • 1 tablespoon peeled and minced ginger
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 quart water
  • 1/2 cup sliced green onion bottoms, white part only
  • 3/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 cup fresh orange juice
  • 1/4 cup hoisin sauce
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
  • Jasmine Rice, for serving
  • 2 teaspoons finely grated orange rind, for serving
  • Sliced green onion tops, optional for garnish

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

In a wide stockpot or Dutch oven, combine the short ribs, soy sauce, vinegar, garlic, lemongrass, ginger, brown sugar, water, green onion bottoms, crushed red pepper, and 2 tablespoons of the orange juice. Make sure that the stockpot is deep enough so that the short ribs are submerged in the liquid.

Bake the short ribs, covered, for about 3 hours, or until the meat is tender and falling off the bones. Remove the short ribs from the braising liquid and cover to keep warm. Increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees F.

Drain the fat off of the cooking liquid and discard. Place the remaining braising juices in a medium saucepan with 1/4 cup of the hoisin sauce and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the liquid until only about 1 1/4 cups remain. Strain through a fine-meshed strainer, discarding the solids. Stir in the remaining 2 tablespoons of orange juice and the lemon juice.

Return the short ribs and the reduced sauce to the stockpot or Dutch oven, coating the short ribs well with the sauce. Bake for 10 minutes, until the short ribs are heated through and slightly glazed. Serve hot over jasmine rice. Season each portion with the orange zest and garnish with the green onions if desired.

Christmas Cookies: Thumbprint Cookies

Merry Christmas to all the Weeknight Gourmet readers!  I was baking this morning so I figured I would share a couple of last minute cookie recipes.

I made a couple of modifications to the thumbprint cookie recipe below.  Instead of lemon juice and zest, I used orange juice and zest.  I also substituted Grand Marnier for Chambord because that’s what I had.  Lastly, I didn’t think the cookies needed a full 20 minutes.  Check on them at 15 minutes.

So delicious!


Raspberry-Lemon Thumbprint Cookies
Emeril Lagasse

1/2 cup raspberry jam or jelly
1 tablespoon Chambord or kirsch
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 sticks (1 cup) butter, at room temperature
2/3 cup sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly butter 2 large baking sheets.
In a small bowl, combine the jam and Chambord. Stir to combine.
In a medium bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, and salt and whisk to blend.

In a large bowl using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar until light and creamy. Beat in the egg yolks, lemon zest, lemon juice and vanilla. Add the flour mixture in 2 additions and beat just until moist clumps form. Gather the dough together into a ball.

Pinch off the dough to form 1-inch balls. Place on the prepared baking sheets, spacing 1-inch apart. Use your floured index finger or 1/2 teaspoon measuring spoon to create depressions in the center of each ball. Fill each indentation with nearly 1/2 teaspoon of the jam mixture. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes.

Transfer the cookies to wire racks to cool completely.

150th Post!! Skirt Steak, Tri-Colore Orzo, Tapas-inspired Chickpea Salad, and Grilled Peaches with Honey & Mascarpone

Hard to believe I have posted 150 times since late January!  There have been so many delicious meals, wonderful dinner guests, and fun meal-time conversations.  Plus, I have received so much positive feedback on the blog.  Overall, the Weeknight Gourmet has been a fun and rewarding undertaking!

As I mentioned in my Blueberry Pie post, we had some guests in Becket this weekend.  Here is the meal we had on Saturday night.  File this as another great barbecue menu!

Mark Bittman’s Grilled Skirt Steak with Chimichurri Sauce

Tri-Colore Orzo

Tapas-inspired Chickpea Salad

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Pound Cake & Grilled Peaches with Mascarpone & Honey