Side Plates

Caprese Salad ~ Connecting All the Dots

Caprese Salad ~ Connecting All the Dots

A few nights ago I cooked dinner for the family and friends. A subtle craving for some Italian home cooking and plenty of ripe tomatoes gave way to a late summer staple, the caprese salad. So incredibly simple, yet good quality ingredients are key to the success of this dish. Maybe just an hour before prepping dinner, I headed over to a nearby farm to pick up some fresh, raw milk. 

Upgraded Stuffed Clams

Upgraded Stuffed Clams

Stuffed clams are one of those classic New England dishes that fed me throughout my childhood. You can find them in seafood restaurants, at the bar, or packaged perfectly in the freezer section of your local supermarket.

Shaved Asparagus w/ Shrimp & Black Olive Vinaigrette

Shaved Asparagus w/ Shrimp & Black Olive Vinaigrette

Here in Maine, asparagus is one of the most highly anticipated vegetables each and every spring. Emerging from the soil around mid-May, these snappy green stalks make their way into our meals in a variety of ways.

Spring Ricotta w/ Rosemary Infused Honey

Spring Ricotta w/ Rosemary Infused Honey

Spring is a glorious time of the year, bringing forth new life after a long winter slumber. Now that the snow has "mostly" melted away, crocuses have shown themselves, providing a vibrant purple color not seen in many months.

Acorn Fried Flounder Roe

Acorn Fried Flounder Roe

We eat a lot of eggs here. From chickens to fish, any way we can get more eggs into our diet the better. Several times a year I stock up on flounder roe, available locally, freshly frozen, and for a fair price too. There are many preparations I adore, but non as much as pan fried, which gives the outside a nice crunch to complement the soft textured interior. 

Nettle Paneer

Nettle Paneer

I've never been a big fan of Indian food, but I will add, I've never really eaten good Indian food. My memories of a popular spot in my hometown comes with greasy sauces, precut frozen vegetables, and less then excellent parboiled rice that often accompanied most dishes.  Since those meals many years ago, I've simply stayed away from the cuisine. But thankfully, things have changed. 

Gnocchi w/ Friends

Gnocchi w/ Friends

With guests in town, I've been pulling out some of my favorite creations to share with them. Meatball curry, BBQ pulled pork, and Coconut baked flounder roe were a few goodies I presented to my west coast friends who took a break from the city to enjoy some R&R here in Maine. A few nights ago, I decided it was time to bust out the gluten and make some pasta from scratch.

Marinated & Roasted Brussels Sprouts

Marinated & Roasted Brussels Sprouts

In recent years, Brussels sprouts have gained in popularity in restaurants across the states. This tiny cabbage like vegetables from the Brassica family can be seen shaved raw, broiled, grilled, and even fermented and often paired with ingredients like bacon, bonito flakes, chili peppers, and of course garlic.

Maple-Mustard Beets

Maple-Mustard Beets

I've got a lot of love for beets. I'm not quite sure how or why, but they are easily one of my favorite vegetables. Maybe it's their intense color that always stains my hands when I peel away their skin or it could be the deep, earthy flavor that tastes reminiscent of the soil they are grown in. Either way, I can dig into beets any time of the year and prepared just about any possible way.