Mini Buffalo Chicken Balls
- 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1/3 cup Frank’s RedHot Sauce or any other favorite hot sauce
- 1 pound ground chicken, preferably thigh meat
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 celery stalk, minced
- 3/4 cup bread crumbs
- 1 teaspoon salt
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Drizzle the vegetable oil into a 9×13-inch baking dish and use your hand to evenly coat the entire surface. Set aside.
Combine the butter and hot sauce in a small saucepan, and cook over low heat, whisking until the butter is melted and fully incorporated. Remove from the heat and allow the mixture to cool for 10 minutes.
Combine the hot sauce mixture, ground chicken, egg, celery, bread crumbs, and salt in a large mixing bowl and mix by hand until thoroughly incorporated.
Roll the mixture into round, 3/4 -inch balls, making sure to pack the meat firmly. Place the balls in the prepared baking dish, being careful to line them up snugly and in even rows vertically and horizontally to form a grid. The meatballs should be touching one another.
Roast for 15 to 20 minutes, or until the meatballs are firm and cooked through. A meat thermometer inserted into the center of a meatball should read 165°F.
Allow the meatballs to cool for 5 minutes in the baking dish before serving.
- 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- Large pinch of cayenne pepper
- Large pinch of kosher salt
- 1 cup plus 3 tablespoons grated Gruyère
- 1/2 cup grated Asiago
- 2 teaspoons fresh thyme leaves plus more for garnish
- 5 large eggs
Preheat oven to 400°F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper. Bring butter and 1 cup water to a boil in a large heavy saucepan. Remove from heat. Add flour, cayenne, and salt; stir vigorously to blend. Return to heat; stir vigorously over medium heat until mixture forms a ball and a thin, dry film forms on bottom and sides of pan, about 1 minute. Transfer mixture to a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add 1 cup Gruyère, Asiago, and 2 teaspoons thyme; beat on low speed to blend. Add 4 eggs, one at a time, fully incorporating each egg between additions, and scraping down sides of bowl as needed.
Spoon dough into a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2″ tip or a plastic bag with 1/2″ cut diagonally from 1 corner. Pipe dough onto prepared baking sheets in 1″–1 1/4″ rounds, spacing 1″ apart. Whisk remaining egg with 1 tablespoon water in a small bowl. Brush egg wash lightly over rounds, patting down to form rounded tops. Sprinkle with remaining 3 tablespoons Gruyère. Garnish each with a few thyme leaves.
Bake gougères until puffed and golden brown and centers are cooked through but still moist, 20-25 minutes. Let cool slightly and serve. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 month ahead. Let cool completely. Store airtight in freezer. Rewarm in 325°F oven until hot, 10-15 minutes.
Blue Cheese-Bacon Focaccia
- 2 1/4 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast
- 1/2 teaspoon honey
- 4 1/2 cups (or more) all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 8 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided, plus more for brushing
- 1 cup riced or mashed boiled russet potatoes
- 5 ounces bacon (about 4 thick-cut strips), cut crosswise into 1/2″ pieces
- 2 ounces blue cheese, crumbled (1/2 cup)
- 1 tablespoon fresh rosemary sprigs
Dissolve yeast and honey in 1/2 cup warm water (110°F-115°F) in a small bowl. Let sit until foamy, about 10 minutes. Combine 4 1/2 cups flour, salt, and pepper in a large bowl. Add the yeast mixture, 6 tablespoons oil, potatoes, and 1 cup warm water. Mix with a wooden spoon until almost incorporated, then finish mixing with your hands. Transfer dough to a floured work surface and knead until smooth, 4–6 minutes, adding more flour by tablespoonfuls if dough seems very sticky (dough should be soft and elastic).
Brush a large bowl with oil; place dough in bowl. Cover with plastic wrap and place in a warm, draft-free area. Let rise until doubled, about 1 hour.
Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add bacon and cook until it is light golden but not crisp. Transfer to paper towels to drain.
Preheat oven to 425°F. Brush a 17x11x1″ baking sheet with oil. Press dough into pan. Press with your fingertips all over, forming dimples. Drizzle remaining 2 tablespoons oil over.
Bake focaccia for 10 minutes. Sprinkle cheese over, then bacon and rosemary. Return to oven and bake until golden brown, 12–15 minutes longer. Let cool for 10 minutes in pan. Slide bread onto a wire rack to cool completely. Slice into 2×1″ pieces.
- 2 cups finely grated fresh Parmesan (or Pecorino Romano)
- 2 large eggs
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 1/4 cups sour manioc starch (povilho azedo)
- 3/4 cup manioc starch (povilho doce)
- 2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1/2 cup whole milk
- 1/2 cup water
- 1/4 cup, plus 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- pinch of ground nutmeg
- pinch of cayenne pepper
- pinch of black pepper
1 Place the grated Parmesan in the bowl of a food processor. Add the eggs and yolks and blend until you have a smooth paste, about 1 minute. Set aside.
2 Place the two starches and salt in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. Set aside.
3 Place the milk, water, and oil in a small saucepan, and bring to a boil. Immediately pour the milk mixture all at once into the starch mixture and turn the machine on at low speed. Mix until the dough is smooth and the starch is all incorporated, about 2 minutes.
4 Pause the machine and add the cheese and egg paste, scraping directly into the manioc starch mixture. Add the nutmeg, cayenne, and black pepper. Mix the dough at low speed until it turns a pale yellow, about 10 minutes. You are trying to develop the structure of the dough by kneading it slowly. The dough will feel a bit sticky and moist.
5 Transfer the dough to a bowl, cover it with plastic wrap, and chill for at least 2 hours in the refrigerator, or overnight.
6 Preheat the oven to 350˚F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
7 Wet your hands with olive oil (alternatively, you can flour your hands with manioc starch) and use an ice-cream scooper as portion control to make 1-inch balls, rolling them with your hands. Place them on the baking sheet, leaving 1 1/2 to 2 inches between each roll (or you can freeze them at this point by storing them in a ziplock bag for up to 3 months).
8 Bake the cheese rolls in the oven until they puff up and look lightly golden brown, 12 to 14 minutes. To ensure even baking, rotate the pan once during baking time.
9 Remove the baking sheet from the oven and place the rolls in a basket lined with a napkin. Serve immediately while they are still at their warmest and chewiest.
- 3/4 cup whole milk
- 2 large eggs, chilled
- 3 cups unbleached all-purpose flour, plus more as needed
- 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 2 tablespoons superfine sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
- A few gratings of fresh nutmeg
- 10 tablespoons (1 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 1/2 cup dried currants
- 1 large egg, well beaten with a hand blender, for glazing
1. Position a rack in the center of the oven and preheat to 425°F. Line a half-sheet pan with parchment paper.
2. TO MAKE THE DOUGH BY HAND: Whisk the milk and 2 eggs together in a small bowl; set aside. Sift the flour, baking powder, sugar, salt, and nutmeg into a medium bowl. Add the butter and mix quickly to coat the butter with the flour mixture. Using a pastry blender, cut the butter into the flour, scraping the butter off the blender as needed, until the mixture resembles coarse bread crumbs with some pea-size pieces of butter. Mix in the currants. Using a wooden spoon, stir in the milk mixture and mix just until the dough clumps together. TO USE A MIXER: Whisk the milk and 2 eggs together in a small bowl; set aside. Sift the dry ingredients together into the bowl of a heavy-duty stand mixer. Add the butter. Attach the bowl to the mixer and fit with the paddle attachment. Mix on medium-low speed until the mixture looks mealy with some pea-size bits of butter. Mix in the currants. Reduce the mixer speed to low. Add the milk mixture, mixing just until the dough barely comes together.
3. Turn the dough out onto a well-floured work surface and sprinkle about 2 tablespoons of flour on top. Knead the dough a few times, just until it doesn’t stick to the work surface. Do not overwork the dough. The surface will be floured, but the inside of the dough should remain on the wet side. Gently roll out the dough into a 3/4-inch-thick round.
4. Using a 2 1/2-inch fluted biscuit cutter, dipping the cutter into flour between cuts, cut out the scones (cut straight down and do not twist the cutter) and place 1 1/2 inches apart on the prepared half-sheet pan. To get the most biscuits out of the dough, cut out the scones close together in concentric circles. Gather up the dough scraps, knead very lightly, and repeat to cut out more scones. You should get two scones from the second batch of scraps. Brush the tops of the scones lightly with the beaten egg, being sure not to let the egg drip down the sides (which would inhibit a good rise).
5. Place the scones in the oven and immediately reduce the heat to 400°F. Bake until golden brown, about 20 minutes. Cool on the pan for a few minutes, then serve warm or cool completely.
Grilled Corn, Crema Mexicana & Cilantro Crostini
- 2 ears corn, shucked
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Kosher salt
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 12 slices of ciabatta bread
- 1/2 garlic clove
- 1/4 cup crema mexicana or sour cream
- 3 tablespoons crumbled feta
- Lime wedge
- Cilantro leaves
- Chili powder
Rub corn with vegetable oil. Season corn with kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper; grill until slightly charred and tender. Slice corn off the cob in wide strips.
Grill bread slices and rub with garlic clove.
Mix crema mexicana or sour cream with feta.
Smear toasts with crema mixture. Top crema with grilled corn. Squeeze a lime wedge over each. Garnish with cilantro leaves and sprinkle with chili powder.
Use 1 cup of hot (or warm) cooked Japanese short grain rice per serving. Add the rice to a small bowl (like a cereal bowl) just big enough to hold it. Jiggle the bowl, moving it in a flat, circular motion, like the motion of a hula hoop, until the rice forms into a ball on its own—a neat kitchen trick Tadashi’s mom taught him. This motion packs the rice so it holds together when it grills.
Wet your hands and place the ball of rice between your cupped palms. Now squeeze, flip, and turn the rice ball several times to form it into a triangular shape. This motion takes a little practice, but after a few yaki onigiri, you’ll get the hang of it. Make sure not to compact the rice too tight; you want it to just stick together.
Grill yaki onigiri over medium heat. If the fire’s too hot, the rice will burn. We like to place the yaki onigiri along the cooler edges of a grill while other foods cook in the hotter center. Watch the rice carefully while it grills; perfect yaki onigiri need constant attention.
How to Cook Japanese Rice
There are two basic ways to prepare Japanese rice: rice cooker or stovetop. If you have an electronic rice cooker, wash and rest the rice as we describe below, then follow cooker instructions. To prepare rice on the stovetop, an enameled cast-iron or cast-iron pot works best because these heavy pots do such a great job distributing heat.
Makes 4 cups of rice
2 cups Japanese short-grain white rice
2 cups water
Wash the rice to remove surface starch by placing the rice in a bowl, filling it with water, and swirling the rice with your hand. Drain off the milky liquid. Repeat 3 or 4 times until the water becomes clear enough to see the rice. Wash quickly; the entire process should take no longer than 3 minutes (soaking the rice in the washing water too long can cloud its flavor). Strain the rice into a colander, cover it with a clean kitchen towel, and let it rest for 15 minutes, so the grains naturally rehydrate, which helps them cook evenly.
Add the rice and 2 cups of water to a pot. Cover and bring to a boil over high heat. Decrease the heat to medium and cook 10 minutes, until you smell a beautiful rice aroma in the steam escaping from the pot. Be careful not to overcook, or you’ll burn the rice. Turn off the heat and let the covered pot sit for 10 minutes, a critical step that completes the cooking process. Uncover the pot, gently stir the rice with a large spoon to fluff it up, and it’s ready.
Ants on a Log
Original recipe makes 10 logs
5 stalks celery
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/4 cup raisins
- Cut the celery stalks in half. Spread with peanut butter. Sprinkle with raisins.
Original recipe makes 4
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 4 slices white or whole wheat bread
- 1 tablespoon cinnamon
- 1 large apple, cored and thinly sliced
- Set oven to broil.
- Spread butter on one side of each slice of bread. Place apple slices on buttered side of bread. Sprinkle cinnamon on top. Place bread on a baking sheet.
- Place in a preheated oven until toasted, about 2 minutes.
Original recipe makes 4 servings
- 4 apples – peeled, cored and chopped
- 3/4 cup water
- 1/4 cup white sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- In a saucepan, combine apples, water, sugar, and cinnamon. Cover, and cook over medium heat for 15 to 20 minutes, or until apples are soft. Allow to cool, then mash with a fork or potato masher.
Caramel Apple Dip
Original recipe makes 8 servings
- 16 individually wrapped caramels, unwrapped
- 1/4 cup water
- 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- In a medium saucepan over medium-low heat, or in the microwave, melt caramels with water, stirring frequently. Remove from heat. In a medium bowl, cream together cream cheese and sugar. Fold in caramel mixture. Serve immediately.
Original recipe makes 1 – 9×13 inch pan
- 3 cups quick-cooking oats
- 1 (14 ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
- 2 tablespoons butter, melted
- 1 cup flaked coconut
- 1 cup sliced almonds
- 1 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips
- 1/2 cup sweetened dried cranberries
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Grease a 9×13 inch pan.
- In a large bowl, mix together the oats, sweetened condensed milk, butter, coconut, almonds, chocolate chips and cranberries with your hands until well blended. Press flat into the prepared pan.
- Bake for 20 to 25 minutes in the preheated oven, depending on how crunchy you want them. Lightly browned just around the edges will give you moist, chewy bars. Let cool for 5 minutes, cut into squares then let cool completely before serving.
Gobble Up Granola Snacks
Original recipe makes 18 bars
- 2 1/2 cups crispy rice cereal
- 2 cups quick-cooking oats
- 1/2 cup raisins
- 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/2 cup light corn syrup
- 1/2 cup crunchy peanut butter
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- In a large bowl, stir together the rice cereal, oats, and raisins. Set aside. Grease a 9×13 inch baking dish with cooking spray.
- Combine the brown sugar and corn syrup in a small saucepan over medium heat. Heat just until boiling, then remove from heat and stir in peanut butter and vanilla until smooth. Pour over the cereal and oat mixture, and mix well.
- Press into the prepared pan using the back of a large spoon. Allow to cool, then cut into squares.
No-Bake Cinnamon Rolls
Original recipe makes 4
- 2 slices white bread, crusts removed
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 tablespoons cinnamon sugar
- 2 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon water, or as needed
- Roll the bread slices until very flat. Butter the bread, and sprinkle with cinnamon sugar. Starting on one side, roll up the bread slice until tight. Repeat with the second bread slice. Cut the bread rolls into 1 inch slices.
- Mix the confectioners’ sugar with the water in a small bowl to make a thin frosting. Drizzle frosting over the bread slices, and serve.
Roasted Pumpkin Seeds
Original recipe makes 1 1/2 cups
- 1 1/2 cups raw whole pumpkin seeds
- 2 teaspoons butter, melted
- 1 pinch salt
- Preheat oven to 300 degrees F (150 degrees C).
- Toss seeds in a bowl with the melted butter and salt. Spread the seeds in a single layer on a baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes or until golden brown; stir occasionally.
Original recipe makes 16 servings
1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons sour cream
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
20 green olives with pimento, chopped
1 bunch celery, cut into bite-size pieces
- In a medium bowl, mix together the cream cheese and sour cream. Stir in the walnuts and chopped olives. Spread filling onto the celery pieces. It’s also good on crackers.
Addictive Pumpkin Muffins
Original recipe makes 36 muffins
- 1 1/2 cups raisins
- 4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
- 4 cups white sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
- 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
- 1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
- 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cloves
- 6 eggs
- 1 (29 ounce) can pumpkin
- 1 cup unsweetened applesauce
- 1 cup chopped walnuts
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 C). Grease three 12 cup muffin pans, or line with paper muffin liners. Soak raisins in hot water for ten minutes to plump, then drain.
- In a large bowl, combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, and ground cloves. In a separate bowl, mix the eggs, pumpkin, and applesauce, until smooth. Add this mixture to the dry ingredients and stir thoroughly to make a smooth batter. Stir the raisins and walnuts into the batter. Spoon batter into the prepared muffin cups.
- Bake for 30 to 35 minutes in the preheated oven, or until a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.