Trained chef and reality television star Dean McDermott's recipe for Easy Lemon Curry Chicken has just the right balance of spice to spruce up your typical baked chicken while maintaining its kid-friendly appeal. Check out his new cookbook, The Gourmet Dad, for more than 100 recipes that will keep the whole family happy during meal times.
Easy Lemon Curry Chicken in Spicy Cream Sauce
You might be a little surprised, as I sure was, that kids take to this dish with gusto. Despite the name, both the chicken and the sauce are fairly mild, with just a hint of curry. I came up with this recipe for myself, because I wanted to spruce up some boring chicken breasts. They had a lovely yellow glaze, which caught Liam’s and Stella’s attention, and they asked me if they could have a taste. The monsters wolfed them down! The curry gives the dish an exotic flavor that is just pleasantly spicy but not overwhelming by any means. It’s a great weeknight dish because it is simple and quick to whip up. You don’t have to knock yourself out in the kitchen to create a knockout meal.
Preheat the oven to 400°F.
In a small bowl, mix together the curry powder, cumin, salt and pepper. Sprinkle half the seasoning across a large platter. Set the chicken on the seasoning and then sprinkle the remaining seasoning on top. Pat the chicken to make the seasoning stick.
Heat the olive oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Sear each chicken breast on both sides until golden brown, about 8 minutes.
Transfer the chicken to a baking sheet and bake for 8 to 12 minutes, or until the internal temperature measures 165°F. Remove the chicken to a clean plate and loosely tent with foil to keep it warm while you prepare the sauce.
Add the lemon juice to the skillet in which the chicken was seared and cook over medium heat, scraping up any bits left from the chicken. Add 1 tablespoon of the butter, the curry powder, cumin, chili powder and coriander, and stir until the butter has melted.
Slowly whisk in the heavy cream. Bring the sauce to a boil, whisking continuously. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons butter and whisk until it melts. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.
Arrange the chicken on 4 individual plates and top with just enough sauce to cover. Serve at once.
Greek chef Diane Kochilas and her incredily straightforward, yet elegant recipe for pasta with a delectable and creamy yogurt-based sauce is just one of the many smart dishes compiled in Food52 Genius Recipes. With just a few ingredients and very little cooking, you can have a dinner on the table that is packed with rich flavor.
Pasta with Yogurt & Caramelized Onions
From Diane Kochilas
When cookbook author Diane Kochilas began dressing pasta with yogurt, her intention was to adapt a classic Greek island dish that required an obscure cheese called sitaka. But, in doing so, she created a dinner of convenience that’s striking enough to serve to company. The sauce has only two components: thick yogurt and starchy, salty pasta cooking water, which together create the soothing texture of an alfredo sauce, lightened up with yogurt’s tang. But it won’t taste austere, especially once you garnish with caramelized onions and Pecorino to balance out the sweetness and salt.
When Kochilas developed this recipe, in order for the yogurt to thicken enough to coat the pasta—and not slip off into a puddle at the bottom of the plate—you had to remember to strain it for 2 hours.This is hardly something to grumble about, but it did keep this dish in the realm of dinners you have to think about before you’re hungry.
Now, with the widespread availability of thick, Greek-style (that is, already strained) yogurts, this is an almost embarrassingly ready-to-eat food. The only step that takes time is caramelizing the onions, which you’ll want to do right. Give them at least 20 to 30 minutes, while you do everything else. They should look like stained glass when you’re done, and taste like honey.
There are endless ways you can fancy up this meal. Throw in spinach or chard as the pasta finishes boiling. Or blend the sauce with peas, mint, or tahini.
Serves 4 to 6
1. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat and add the onions. Decrease the heat to medium-low and cook, stirring frequently and seasoning with salt to taste as you go, until the onions are soft and golden brown, 20 to 30 minutes.
2. Meanwhile, fill a large pot with water and bring to a boil. As the water heats, add enough salt so that you can taste it. Add the pasta and cook until soft, just past al dente. Drain the pasta, reserving 1⁄2 cup (120ml) of the pasta water. Combine the yogurt with 1⁄4 cup (60ml) cooking water and mix well. Add more of the reserved pasta water as needed to get the sauce to your desired thickness.Toss the pasta with the yogurt mixture. Serve the pasta immediately, sprinkled generously with cheese and topped with the caramelized onions and their juices.
Note: If using thick, Greek yogurt, like a colander with cheesecloth and set over a bowl or in the sink. Add the yogurt and let drain for 2 hours before proceeding with the recipe. For a treat, seek out sheep's milk yogurt for this.
June is Audio Month, and whether you're a lifelong fan of audiobooks or are interested in a pitch-perfect reading to keep you entertained during a summer road trip, we've rounded up five of our favorite and highly-acclaimed audios from the past year. Put your earbuds in and listen up to a great book!
Falling in Love
By Donna Leon
Leon's highbrow and worldy Commissario Guido Brunetti series continues with a classically noir investigation in Venice. Famous soprano Flavia Petrelli is set to sing Tosca at renowned opera house La Fenice, but an obsessive and relentless admirer soon turns vicious, and Brunetti must wind through the ancient streets and canals to track down this deranged villain. David Colacci brings this fast-paced mystery—and the achingly beautiful world of the Venetian opera—to vivid life.
H Is for Hawk
By Helen Macdonald
Macdonald's unusual and poetic memoir, H Is for Hawk, seamlessly weaves the story of her intimate struggle with grief following her father's unexpected death along with her fascinating attempt at training a wild and often vicious goshawk. Her passion for falconry and her ensuing relationship with goshawk Mabel unexpectedly gives her the strength and inspiration to rejoin the world.
Our Souls at Night
By Kent Haruf
Haruf's masterful, elegaic and final novel coupled with Mark Bramhall's flawless reading is a wonderful choice for those still, quiet summer evenings. Addie Moore, a lonely widow makes a "kind of proposal" to her neighbor, a longtime widower himself, Louis Waters: If he would be interested in sleeping with her each night—not for sex, but for companionship and human connection. The two develop an intensely close and poignant relationship, but not everyone in their small Colorado town sees the benefits, and the two friends must work to overcome the obstacles to their happiness in their "precious few" remaining days of life. Listen to this with a box of tissues at the ready, and prepare to have your own soul moved and changed.
By Lily King
Simon Vance and Xe Sands read King's lush and highly detailed historical novel, Euphoria. Named one of The New York Times' 10 Best Books of the Year, the story follows a fictionalized version of acclaimed anthropologist Margaret Mead, recast as Nell Stone, during her field work in 1933. When Stone and her husband meet a group of fellow scientists and intelluctuals, sexual and emotional tensions arise, and King's keen insight into the relationships between three very different ethnologists is beautifully transporting and touching.
By Eula Biss
To vaccinate, or not to vaccinate? Listen up to Eula Biss' personal and probing exploration of this hot-button issue in On Immunity. As a new mother, Biss was faced with an array of anxiety-inducing choices about her child’s health options, but the issue she struggled with the most was vaccines. In this in-depth and well-researched look at our strange fear of vaccines and the lore surrounding them, Biss uncovers fascinating truths about our society as a whole.
Will you be listening in to a book this summer?
Dean McDermott has created a wealth of family-friendly recipes that take picky eaters into mind with The Gourmet Dad. Little ones will gladly eat their greens with this savory, smoky recipe for Rainbow Chard with Bacon and Capers.
Rainbow Chard with Bacon and Capers
Chard, like spinach and other earthy greens, is chock-full of nutrients that kids and adults need. In raw form, chard is an acquired taste (that’s a nice way of saying kids will spit it out). But braise or sauté these greens and they come to life. Any leafy greens like this need to be thoroughly rinsed before cooking—otherwise you risk a gritty mouth feel. For young chard, trim just the stems; for mature chard, discard the spines then chop and cook the stems. If larger, more mature chard leaves are all that are available, they are going to be more bitter than young chard. You might want to add about a teaspoon of sugar or agave nectar to the dish to mellow any bitterness and bring out the sweetness in the greens. For the kids, I chop the chard fine, leave out the cayenne and double the bacon.
Separate the chard leaves from the stems. Wash, rinse and dry the leaves and stems thoroughly. Slice the leaves lengthwise into ribbons, and slice the stems crosswise into ½-inch pieces. Set aside.
Cook the bacon in a large cast-iron skillet over medium heat until it is crispy, turning occasionally. Transfer the lardons to a paper towel–lined plate and set aside.
Add the chard stems, garlic and shallots to the skillet, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes. Remove the garlic and discard.
Increase the heat to medium-high, add the chard leaves and toss with tongs until just wilted, 1 to 2 minutes. Season with the black pepper, salt and cayenne pepper. Stir in the reserved lardons, the capers and the lemon zest, and toss to combine. Serve hot.
Reprinted from The Gourmet Dad by Dean McDermott, copyright © 2015. Recipe courtesy of Harlequin Publishing. Photography credit: James Tse Photography Inc. Read our review of this book.
Renowned interior designer Gabrielle Stanley Blair has amassed quite an online following with her family-focused design blog. Blair has compiled her best advice—both as a designer and a mother of six—in her new book, Design Mom, and she proves that you too can create a home that is not only beautiful, but functional and stain-proof to boot.
“You Are Special Today” Plate
A New Family Tradition
When I was growing up, one of my favorite family traditions was using our “You Are Special Today” plate. It was a red plate with white script that said, you guessed it, “You Are Special Today.” It hung in a place of honor in the kitchen. On birthdays or other special days—maybe we earned a great grade on a chemistry exam or got a personal best at the track meet—we were served dinner on the special plate.
Such a simple thing, but what a treat! We looked forward to our turn with fondness and anticipation, and it always felt so good to be acknowledged in such a concrete way.
Step 1: Print out the phrase “You Are Special Today” in the font of your choosing, sized to fit in the middle of the plate. Then cut a piece of graphite paper (or create your own by rubbing a pencil across a plain piece of paper) just a bit bigger than your printout. If you like, you can find three designs of the phrase, which you can print out for free on DesignMom.com/book.
Step 2: Place the graphite paper facedown on the plate. Then place the printout faceup on top of the graphite paper, being sure to center it on the plate, and tape two corners of both papers in place so they don’t move around.
Step 3: Using a sharp pencil, trace the outline of the text, which will leave the graphite tracing on the plate. Then remove the tape and papers, taking care not to smudge the graphite image on the plate.
Step 4: Use a porcelain marker to fill in the traced lettering. You may want to use cotton swabs to clean up extra graphite smears and/or errors.
Step 5: Bake the plate according to the porcelain marker instructions to set the ink and make the plate washable. (Typically, 300°F for 35 minutes.)
Overwhelmed with the bounty of summer berries and citrus? Then get wise, and give this refreshing Strawberry Lemon Sorbet from Food52 Genius Recipes a try.
Strawberry Lemon Sorbet
From river café
We’re taught to zest our lemons carefully, to shear off just the thin yellow top coat that holds the citrusy perfume—as if some of the bitter, spongy white pith might sneak in and ruin everything. (And sometimes it does.)
But Ruth Rogers and Rose Gray, founders of the famed River Café in London, realized that, taken in the right proportions, some pith would add depth but not bitterness to a sweet dessert. So they told us to pulverize a whole chopped lemon, pith and all, and make strawberry sorbet out of it.
The process is enough to convince anyone, young or old, that the kitchen is an exciting place to be. Just three ingredients make a series of quick, color- ful transformations, all in one food processor bowl. You get to see not only what strawberries look like as they surrender and slacken into a hot-pink soup, but also what happens when chopped lemon and sugar become one—going from sand to slush in just a few pulses. And because this effortlessly dissolves the sugar, you get to bypass making a simple syrup, a step often considered mandatory in sorbet recipes. In other words, this is a truly no-cook sorbet.
It’s sweet and cold, with little pucker, and since you don’t strain it, you get gleeful pops of strawberry seed and shreds of lemon rind (of course, you could always pass it through a strainer if textured sorbet isn’t your thing, but for the true, rustic Rogers-and-Gray experience, don’t).
Serve it as an invigorating dessert after something grilled and meaty. Or ease a scoop into a glass of seltzer or ginger ale and go sit in the sunshine.
Makes 1½ quarts (1.4L)
1. Place the lemon pieces into a food processor with the sugar, and pulse until combined. Pour into a bowl.
2. Puree the strawberries in a food processor and add to the lemon mixture, along with the juice of 1 lemon. Taste and add more juice as necessary.The flavor of the lemon should be intense but should not overpower the strawberries. Pour the mixture into an ice cream machine and churn until frozen. Serve immediately or transfer to a lidded container in the freezer until serving.
Who doesn't love a good beach read? Or perhaps, for you, it's a poolside read, lake read or a lounging-in-bed read. Wherever you are this summer, these books—all set around waterfront locales—are perfect page-turners worth diving into on sunny, sweltering days. Don't forget to look for more picks in our upcoming July issue!
By Peter Nichols
Peter Nichols' sophomore novel, The Rocks, has the makings of a quintessential beach read. Set on the sun-drenched Mediterranean island of Mallorca, it explores 60 years of love affairs, misunderstandings, tragedies and triumphs at an island resort. Our reviewer calls this captivating novel "the literary equivalent of a good Netflix binge," except you won't have to feel guilty when it's over.
By Christopher Bollen
The North Fork of Long Island becomes a pressure cooker for cultural tensions between "year rounders" and wealthy vacationers from Manhattan in Christopher Bollen's suspenseful page turner. Rumors and tensions swell and the body count increases as the Summer draws to a close. This is the perfect pick for mystery fans who crave a little literary edge.
By Mary Kate Andrews
If you're looking for a straight forward fun-in-the-sun romance, then Mary Kay Andrews has the book for you. The titular beach town is a pictureque small-town paradise–so picturesque in fact that it draws the attention of Hollywood location scout Greer Hennessy. But stodgy Mayor Eben Thinadeaux isn't sure bringing a film crew to his little slice of heaven is such a good idea, even though he can't deny the attraction simmering between the two of them.
I Take You
By Eliza Kennedy
By Sara Taylor
Fans of slow-burning, atmostpheric novels will want to pick up Sara Taylor's Baily-prize nominated debut, The Shore. Moving back and forth between time and narrators—from a mixed-race Shawnee woman in 1876 to two of her descendants in the 21st century— Taylor explores the history of three islands off the coast of Virginia. This female-centered Southern Gothic will have big appeal for fans of Ron Rash.
The results are in! You voted for your favorite book of 2015 so far, and here's how the numbers stacked up:
#1. The Girl on the Train By Paula Hawkins
By a wide margin, Paula Hawkins thrilling debut, The Girl on the Train, took the top spot! Widely praised as the next Gone Girl, this book is not to be missed, and it looks like readers are taking note.
#2. The Bookseller By Cynthia Swanson
#3. A Spool of Blue Thread By Anne Tyler
#4. Dead Wake By Erik Larson
What do you think, readers? Did the best books win? If you missed our list of the 10 best books of 2015—so far!—then be sure to check it out.
Michelin-starred chef April Bloomfield's recipe for Salad Sandwiches is simple and perfect for these scorching summer days when you don't want to turn on the oven or stove. Pack a these in a picnic basket and enjoy the sunshine!
Makes 4 sandwiches
Don’t tell me you’ve never had a salad sandwich! When I was a girl, my family practically lived on them come summer, when it was steamy outside and the last thing my mom wanted to do was hunch over a hot stove. The salad sandwich is just what it sounds like: bread piled with veg like tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, and onion. My mum would add spring onions from her garden and slather the bread with butter and Heinz Salad Cream. The ones I make today aren’t much different, though I typically make my own version of salad cream and might occasionally add boiled eggs with oozy yolks or use goat cheese butter. Sometimes I’ll even bake my own white bread. But really, the little details are up to you.
Fill a medium pot at least halfway with water and bring it to a boil over high heat. Use a slotted spoon to gently add the eggs to the water and cook them for 7 minutes (set a timer), then run them under cold water until they’re fully cool. Lightly tap each egg against the counter to crack the shell all over, then carefully peel them. Slice them however you’d like just before you add them to the sandwich.
Lay the tomato, cucumber and onion in more or less one layer on a large platter or cutting board. Squeeze a little lemon juice over the veg, then add a good drizzle of olive oil and a sprinkle of salt. Flip them over and rub them gently, just to make sure they’re all seasoned.
Spread each slice of bread with butter. Layer the tomato, cucumber, onion, lettuce, salad cream, and eggs on 4 slices of bread: I like to start with the tomatoes, then lettuce, then a good old slather of salad cream, then the eggs, the cucumber, and finally the onion. Top with the remaining bread and give each sandwich a firm but gentle press with your palm. Eat straightaway.
Makes a generous cup
This creamy, tangy dressing is meant to mimic the jarred salad cream I grew up with in England, which I poured all over raw vegetables. I realize now that it’s a lot like a really liquidy version of the deviled egg filling I make at The Spotted Pig, with a little tarragon thrown in. If you’re making this for Salad Sandwiches, you might want to give some of the boiled egg whites a good old chop and pile them on the bread along with the soft-boiled eggs. No point in wasting.
Fill a medium pot at least halfway with water and bring it to a boil over high heat. Use a slotted spoon to gently add the eggs to the water, cook them for 10 minutes (set a timer), then run them under cold water until they’re fully cool. Lightly tap each egg against the counter to crack the shell all over, then peel them, halve them lengthwise, and pop out the yolks. (Reserve the whites for another purpose, like Salad Sandwiches, or for nibbling.)
Use the back of a spoon to force the yolks through a mesh sieve into a food processor. Add the oil, cream, vinegar, mustard, garlic, salt, and 2 teaspoons water and process until very smooth and creamy. Add the tarragon and process briefly. It keeps in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 2 days.
From A Girl and Her Greens by April Bloomfield. Copyright 2015 April Bloomfield. Excerpted by permission of Ecco, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers. Read our review of this book.