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Jun 01, 2016
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Make This

Make This: Shrimp Roll

Friday, May 6th, 2016



Downside to not living by the ocean: no ocean. Upside to not living by the ocean: We don’t have to fight the seagulls for these sandwiches. In a large pot, bring 8 cups water plus 2 tablespoons Old Bay seasoning or salt to a boil. Remove from heat and add 1 pound medium peeled and deveined shrimp. Cover and let sit 3 minutes. Prepare an ice bath. Drain the shrimp and submerge in the ice bath to cool. In the bowl of a food processor, combine 2 egg yolks, 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard, 1 clove garlic, ¼ cup fresh basil, 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 teaspoon horseradish. Pulse to combine. With the processor running, drizzle 1½ cups olive oil until a thick aioli forms. Roughly chop the shrimp and toss with ½ cup chopped celery and the aioli. Pile on 4 toasted hot dog buns or potato, brioche or Kaiser rolls brushed with melted butter and top with sliced tomato and lettuce.


-photo by Greg Rannells 

Make This: Matzo Brittle

Saturday, April 23rd, 2016



When the Passover dishes are put away and all that’s left is a lonely half box of matzo, whip up this simple treat. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and top with parchment paper. Break 4 matzo crackers into chunks and spread evenly on the baking sheet. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, stir together 1 stick unsalted butter and 1 cup dark brown sugar until the mixture begins to boil. Stir constantly 2 minutes until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in 1 teaspoon vanilla extract and 1 teaspoon kosher salt. Quickly cover the matzo with the mixture. Bake 10 minutes, then immediately scatter 1½ cups semi-sweet chocolate chips on top. Let stand 1 minute. Spread the melted chocolate across the surface and sprinkle with a pinch of salt and ⅓ cup toasted coconut or chopped nuts. Let cool, then break into pieces. It’s a mitzveh!

-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Dukka-Crusted Lamb Chops

Wednesday, March 9th, 2016



Dukka (pronounced DOO’-kah) is a blend of nuts, seeds and spices found in Egyptian cuisine that makes a rich, crunchy crust for cooked meat or fish. Place ½ cup salted and roasted pistachios, 1/3 cup toasted sesame seeds, 2 tablespoons coriander, 2 teaspoons cumin and 1 teaspoon black pepper in a food processor and grind until fine. Season 8 trimmed 3-ounce lamb chops with kosher salt and pepper. Heat 1 tablespoon oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat and add half the lamb chops to the pan. Cook 3 minutes per side, until medium-rare. Transfer chops to a plate and tent with foil, then cook the remaining chops. Dredge the cooked lamb chops in dukka to coat both sides, place on a plate and drizzle each with 1 to 2 tablespoons pomegranate molasses.

-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Cajun Pasta

Monday, February 8th, 2016



St. Louisans find their inner Cajun each year at Mardi Gras, but we also have a strong Italian heritage. Combining these two culinary juggernauts is as simple as this dish. To a large skillet over medium heat, add 2 tablespoons olive oil, then saute 1 small chopped onion, 1 sliced green bell pepper, 1 sliced red bell pepper, 2 cloves minced garlic, 12 ounces thinly sliced andouille sausage and 2 tablespoons Cajun seasoning* until the onions become translucent, 3 to 4 minutes. Stir in 1 cup white wine and 2 tablespoons tomato paste, then cook until the sauce reduces by half, about 3 minutes. Add 1 pint heavy cream, bring to a low boil then turn down the heat to low and let the sauce reduce about 5 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare 1 pound farfalle or campanelle pasta according to package directions. Taste the sauce and adjust seasoning if needed, then remove from heat. Add the cooked pasta to the sauce and toss to coat. Serve topped with Parmesan cheese.

*To create your own version of Cajun seasoning “Bam!” combine ¼ cup smoked paprika, ¼ cup kosher salt, 2 tablespoons each freshly ground black pepper, ground white pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, 1 tablespoon each thyme, cayenne, brown sugar, and 1 teaspoon each turmeric, cumin, mace and celery salt.

-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Gin and Juice Scallops en Papillote

Friday, January 1st, 2016



Is your mind on your money and your money on your mind? Cook with gin and juice, and you’re bound to feel like a rap star. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. In a large bowl toss together 1 cup thinly sliced fennel, ½ cup thinly sliced leeks, ½ cup thinly sliced red onion, 1 cup baby spinach, 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon olive oil, 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon gin, the juice of 2 small oranges, and kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Fold 4 15-by-15-inch squares of parchment paper in half and cut off the unfolded edges to make half-heart shapes. Unfold the hearts and divide the vegetables evenly on 1 side of each heart, leaving about a 1 ½-inch border, then top with 2 large sea scallops. Working from the end, tightly fold the edges to seal. Repeat with the remaining parchments. Bake on a sheet pan 13 minutes, then remove from the oven and let rest 2 to 3 minutes before serving.


– photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Salmon with Red Curry Sauce

Tuesday, December 15th, 2015



Skip carry-out curry. Velvety red curry sauce doesn’t require much at-home effort to earn its complex, rich flavor. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a medium saucepan over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon oil. Whisk in 1 to 1½ tablespoons red curry paste and cook 30 seconds, stirring constantly. Whisk in 1 14-ounce can coconut milk, 2 tablespoons brown sugar, 1 tablespoon fish sauce and the zest and juice of 1 lime. Increase the heat to high, bring to a boil, then reduce the heat to low and simmer 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside. Place 4 5-ounce salmon fillets skin-side down on a foil-lined baking sheet, then sprinkle with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste. Bake 8 to 12 minutes, until the salmon is still slightly pink in the center. Then, remove the skin by sliding a thin spatula between the skin and the flesh, and transfer each fillet to a plate. Top the salmon with curry sauce and serve alone or with jasmine rice.

-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Tropical Pancakes

Tuesday, October 27th, 2015



Put down that breakfast bar. This tropical, gluten-free spin on the banana-based pancake fad proves there’s always time for a homemade, healthy morning nosh. In a medium-sized bowl, whisk 1 egg and 1 ripe banana until combined. Stir in 1 tablespoon shredded unsweetened coconut, ½ teaspoon pure vanilla extract, a pinch of baking powder and a pinch of kosher salt. In a skillet over medium heat, melt a pat of butter and spoon about 2 tablespoons batter per pancake into the pan. Cook until golden brown and flip carefully with a thin spatula, about 1 minute per side. Top with equal parts maple syrup and crushed pineapple and serve.

-photo by Greg Rannells  

Eat This: Jalapeno Sausage Pizza at Peel Wood Fired Pizza and Brewery

Saturday, September 19th, 2015



We love a classic Margherita as much as the next pizza aficionado, but sometimes we need a pie unabashedly piled high with toppings. The Jalapeno Sausage Pizza at Peel Wood Fired Pizza and Brewery sees a hand-tossed crust smeared with Parmesan cream sauce followed by cheddar-jalapeno sausage, bacon and dollops of smoked mozzarella crowned with the sweet heat of bread-and-butter jalapenos. It’s a multicultural, all-American slice of gooey, fiery, meaty bliss.

-photo by Carmen Troesser

Make This: 3-Minute Honey-Almond Cake

Saturday, September 19th, 2015



Sometimes, it’s all you can do to throw stuff in a cup and nuke it. Make someone’s day a touch sweeter in minutes with this mug cake. Whisk together 4 tablespoons flour, 2 teaspoons sugar, ¼ teaspoon baking powder, 3 tablespoons milk, 1 tablespoon honey, 2 teaspoons vegetable oil and ½ teaspoon almond extract in a coffee mug. Gently fold in 1 tablespoon sliced almonds and 1 additional teaspoon honey. Microwave 1 minute. If still wet, microwave 15 more seconds. Serve warm.

-photo by Greg Rannells

Make This: Shrimp Saganaki

Monday, August 17th, 2015




This traditional Greek dish can serve as an appetizer or light meal. The briny feta and olives are a perfect complement to the tomato-laden shrimp and best of all, there’s only one pan to clean. Start by heating ¼ cup olive oil in a large skillet over high heat. When the oil begins to shimmer, add 1 cup thinly sliced shallots and saute 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1 pound peeled, deveined, butterflied shrimp, 2 cups halved cherry tomatoes and ½ cup pitted, coarsely chopped kalamata olives. Reduce heat to medium, stir, cover and cook 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat, stir in 1/3 cup chopped fresh dill, 4 ounces feta cheese and a squeeze of lemon juice. Serve with crusty bread or atop couscous.

-Photo by Greg Rannells

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