This is it, folks. This is the perfect, unexpected, amazing vegetable soup, adapted from Michael Solomonov’s beast of a cookbook Zahav. This recipe is the perfect example of his brilliant and unusual use of commonplace spices and other ingredients. Here, he uses squash peels and seeds, usually thrown in the trash, as the base for a beautifully-spiced and seasoned squash-tomato broth, given depth by the addition of a charred onion.
A cinnamon stick and whole cloves add warmth and bring out the sweetness of the squash flavors, and the bitterness of kale brings balance. Toasted fideos and roasted pieces of squash add body and a toasty flavor to the soup, with pearl onions adding one more bite of sweetness.
This soup takes some time to make -- peeling the squash is a bit of a pain, as it always is, and the broth takes an hour to simmer and bring out all the flavors of the vegetables and spices. But other than the time it takes, this is a soup with a fairly accessible and inexpensive list of ingredients that will yield spectacular results. Give it a try, and if you go right out and buy a copy of Zahav after taking your first bite, well, I don’t blame you at all.
The bread that you see in the picture above is called lachuch, a beautifully spongy pancake bread typically served alongside soup in Yemen. A healthy dose of ground fenugreek speeds its fermentation and adds a tangy flavor, though the bread can lean either savory or sweet, depending on its toppings. I’ve included a recipe for it along with the soup, should you want to go the extra mile. And if you end up with leftovers, a friend of mine whose family is Yemeni swears that a piece of lachuch spread with labneh and honey makes for the best breakfast ever.
Serves 6. Adapted from Zahav.
It’s going to be a cold one on the East Coast this weekend — time for a warming breakfast that gives you the power and energy to get through the day. Here’s one amazing option — Shakshuka! Not only is it fun to say, it’s a delicious, savory, healthy egg dish that makes for an exciting and comforting meal.
A blend of aromatic spices brings the traditional complex flavors of pho to a vegetarian version.
Rice bowls are starting to be a big thing these days, and there's a good reason. Take something a little saucy, something with some great texture, something with protein or some bite to it, arrange on top of rice, add the condiments of your choice, and enjoy your healthy, delicious, and filling meal!
There’s a small restaurant chain in Los Angeles called Zankou Chicken that is well known for its super secret chicken shawarma recipe, which is crispy and juicy and beautifully spiced and comes with a crazy-good garlic sauce that will make your breath reek for at least the next few hours if not days.
This is my ideal summer dish. It’s healthy, packed with flavor, and makes use of the bounty of zucchini that appears in gardens and stores each June.
These falafel sandwiches are straight-up amazing. The falafel is flavorful, crisp, and light, so good that even by itself it’s a wonderful thing.
Both of these recipes are kind of magical -- they take super simple ingredients like water, flour, butter, salt, and Vanns Smoked Spanish Paprika and turn them into beautiful, impressive golden brown focaccia and a deeply orange-red, perfectly flavored smoked paprika butter to be spread on top. It makes a great appetizer for any occasion, but be careful that your guests don’t fill themselves up on it! It’s a little bit addictive.
What do you call something that’s a sauce, a paste, a flavor-adder, a spark of heat and a touch of earth, a zing to be stirred into soups and pilafs, mixed with yogurt and hummus, spread on sandwiches and mixed into marinades?
It’s starting to feel like real springtime weather these days -- cool in the mornings and evenings, warm during the day, weather that sometimes makes it hard to know what to eat. A cool, refreshing, summery salad or a comforting, warming wintery stew?
Spicy, savory Italian sausage, earthy kale, sweet caramelized onions, and creamy potatoes combine with chicken stock and a sprinkling of parmesan and black pepper to create the perfect cold-weather soup.