olive oil – Le Physalis Restaurant http://lephysalisrestaurant.com/ Tue, 12 Apr 2022 17:51:06 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=5.9.3 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/07/icon-2-140x136.png olive oil – Le Physalis Restaurant http://lephysalisrestaurant.com/ 32 32 The gold standard of Middle Eastern food is now in Pudong – it’s Shanghai https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/the-gold-standard-of-middle-eastern-food-is-now-in-pudong-its-shanghai/ Fri, 18 Mar 2022 07:32:09 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/the-gold-standard-of-middle-eastern-food-is-now-in-pudong-its-shanghai/ The place Lebanese of origin Wael Accadowner of Eli Falafel, had been working in international logistics in Shanghai for more than 15 years when he decided to become a restaurateur. Beginning with pop-up stalls at festivals in 2016, by May 2017 he had opened his first physical store on Wulumuqi Lu. Image courtesy of Eli […]]]>

The place

Lebanese of origin Wael Accadowner of Eli Falafel, had been working in international logistics in Shanghai for more than 15 years when he decided to become a restaurateur. Beginning with pop-up stalls at festivals in 2016, by May 2017 he had opened his first physical store on Wulumuqi Lu.

Image courtesy of Eli Falafel, Jiujiang Lu

Emerging from humble beginnings, the 20-seat restaurant primarily served falafel – deep-fried spicy chickpea fritters commonly eaten on the street in the Middle East – kebabs, wraps and dips, quickly establishing itself as the stallion -or casual Middle Eastern dishes in Shanghai. restaurant scene.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

It only made sense then that Wael would continue to expand his empire, branching out further into new neighborhoods and larger spaces, as well as an expanded menu; 2019 saw the opening of the Jiujiang Lu site, while early 2021 brought Eli Falafel to the hungry masses of Lujiazui.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

From the layout and decor to the specific recipe and presentation of each item, Wael and his team designed the Pudong venue, with the aim of bringing Lebanese culture to the people of Shanghai.

The brightly lit space features an open kitchen and 360-degree bar, with 150 seats inside and another 80 outside, all outfitted with decorative antique vases, gold-embossed lamps, d pillows in rich colors and pearls, while plants abound.

The food

Come hungry – and bring some friends while you’re there – as Pudong’s menu dives deep into Lebanese cuisine with a wide range of dips, salads, snacks, meat stews, pizzas, shawarma, kebabs, grilled protein platters, wraps, sandwiches, desserts, homemade ice cream and cocktails.


Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Start with an order from Eli Trio (RMB68)a selection of authentic Lebanese dips prepared at home from hummus – sun-dried organic chickpeas boiled and tossed with tahini, fresh lemon juice and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil; baba ghanouge – grilled eggplant mixed with tahini, minced garlic, lemon juice and Persian pomegranate seeds; and muhammara – roasted mild red Aleppo pepper mixed with walnuts, breadcrumbs and pomegranate syrup – all served with classic hot puff pastry.

Dips set the tone for the meal, opening your palate to the onslaught of flavors to come. And a layer on top of any other dishes you plan to order just happens to boost the flavor.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

the Eli Falafel Salad (RMB68) is a fresher version of the traditional falafel pita sandwich. Swapping the carbs for a bed of fresh lettuce, the salad features fresh mint leaves and parsley along with tomato and avocado, all drizzled with a homemade tahini dressing.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

An essential order, the Hummus topped with diced meat (RMB68) sees the lamb slow-cooked to charred perfection. The crisp, wavy edges serve as ideal containers for scooping up a dollop of succulent hummus, sprinkled with sumac, cumin and paprika.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

the Eli’s Quick Bites (RMB105) are the best for sharing a taste of Lebanese street food, including a selection of starters spanning falafel; kibbe meatballs – bulgar wheat mixed with ground beef, onions, roasted pine nuts and spices; sambousek – crispy pie crust stuffed with ground beef, onions, roasted pine nuts and spices; beautiful lahme – minced meat fritters; cheese rkakat – puff pastry stuffed with gruyère, mozzarella, feta and fine herbs; and a large bowl of sour yogurt and olive oil for dipping.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Take a break (and readjust your belt buckle) before the sector arrives with Lebanese artisan coffee (RMB28), Served with maamoula shortbread biscuit filled with dates.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

New to the menu, the Chicken Combo Sandwich (RMB78) and Fish and Shrimp Combo Sandwich (RMB88) arrive on toasted buns – stuffed with crispy fries – the latter topped with tangy tartar sauce.

Stacked high but structurally sound, each bite delivers a satisfying crunch from the fried coating, enhanced by a creamy bite of one of Shanghai’s best coleslaw.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

They also offer Eli Combo (RMB78) for weekday lunches, where any wrap (choice of falafel, chicken liver, chicken shawarma, shish taouk, beef shawarma, lamb kabab, kafta kabab or potato) comes with hummus, a seasonal salad, fries and a soft drink.

DSC01720.jpgEggs and meat (RMB58), Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Unlike traditional Italian pizza dough which typically takes 16-24 hours to ferment, Lebanese pizza dough is ready in just three, resulting in a flatbread crust, sprinkled with spices, cheese, pickles, vegetables and meats.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

the Pizza Sujuk (RMB108) features a gooey mix of mozzarella and Gruyere cheese topped with coin-sized rounds of spicy fermented beef sausage – a style of meat eaten in Middle Eastern and Balkan cuisine.

Other Lebanese pizza flavors include za’atar – dried thyme, sumac and toasted sesame seeds; lahme bi ajeen – ground meat, diced tomatoes, onions and a signature spice blend; falafel and vegetables; chicken or beef shawarma with fries, pickles, arugula, tomatoes, herbs and tahini; and many other Middle Eastern flavor combinations.

DSC01753.jpgMixed Shawarma Plate (RMB145), Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Like crème brûlée meets mozzarella stick, Knafeh Jibneh (RMB68) sees a mixture of shredded filo pastry, hearty melty mozzarella cheese mixed with fine semolina and cream plus a sprinkle of breadcrumbs on top.

Baked with a golden crust, this savory Middle Eastern treat is served hot, sprinkled with crushed organic pistachios and drizzled with rose water and homemade orange blossom syrup.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

A porridge of milk, corn flour, rose water and sugar forms the base of Ashtaliah (35 RMB)a Lebanese pudding with a delicate flanked texture, topped with crushed pistachios, a drizzle of syrup and a scoop of mango ice cream.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Speaking of ice cream, Eli Falafel makes his own on-site, ranging from caramel, mango, and pistachio to chocolate, milk, and strawberry. Hang anything from a Single spoon (RMB28) to the Combination of six flavors (RMB98).

More similar to Turkish ice cream, heaped scoops are more chewy, stretchy and deliciously velvety.

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

The drinks side of the menu emphasizes fresh flavors, with fruity selections, such as the Soursop Gimlet (RMB58) – made with Beefeater gin, lemon, amontillado sherry and soursop puree – and their version of a Boulevardier (RMB58) – featuring coffee whiskey, Campari, sweet vermouth and aromatic cardamom bitters.

Non-alcoholic offers, such as the PassionMate (RMB68) with passion fruit syrup, hibiscus tea and mate tea, are equally refreshing.

The atmosphere

Nestled in the hustle and bustle of the Bund, this bustling spot is awash with working lunch crowds, especially on sunny days. The welcoming ambience coupled with the sunny disposition of the servers makes it attractive for families, dates and get-togethers.

WechatIMG4941.jpegImage courtesy of Eli Falafel

Image by Sophie Steiner/It’s

And, while Lujiazui Eli’s expanded menu is available in both Pudong and Puxi (and is as good as a meal at – trust us – we’ve tested it), it’s hard to tell. beat a sunny patio lunch, especially if it’s homemade. the ice is in question.

Oh, and don’t think the Eli Empire expansion ends here; plans are already underway for the fourth outpost in the Portman Ritz Carlton on Nanjing Xi Lu, which is scheduled to open in August.

Price: RMB75-225
Who go: The expat community from the Middle East – and more specifically – from Lebanon, Lujiazui lunches, families looking to please the whole crew
Good for: Falafel cravings, healthy lunches, grilled meat consumption

See a listing for Eli Falafel Pudong.

Read more Shanghai restaurant reviews.

[Cover image by Sophie Steiner/That’s]

What’s Happening Today – February 11, 2022 – DelmarvaLife https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/whats-happening-today-february-11-2022-delmarvalife/ Fri, 11 Feb 2022 17:46:09 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/whats-happening-today-february-11-2022-delmarvalife/ Today on DelmarvaLife – We sit down with the authors of “The Five Core Conversations for Couples”, David and Julie Bulitt. They talk about how to keep love alive all year round. Mindy Allen-Townsend of A&A Companies tells us why it’s so important to stay on top of your HVAC maintenance. Next week is “random […]]]>

Today on DelmarvaLife –

We sit down with the authors of “The Five Core Conversations for Couples”, David and Julie Bulitt. They talk about how to keep love alive all year round.

Mindy Allen-Townsend of A&A Companies tells us why it’s so important to stay on top of your HVAC maintenance.

Next week is “random acts of kindness” week. the mayor of Salisbury, Jake Day; and Salisbury Kindness Secretary Grace Foxwell-Murdock visit us on their fun day of spreading kindness.

The Humane Society of Wicomico County is running out of space for dogs. This is why they are appealing for foster families. You can learn more about the shelter’s promotion or donation for expansion by clicking here. We also have a dog and four cats to adopt from other shelters in the area.

We’re in the DelmarvaLife kitchen with Chef Sharliena Berry-Jenkins of Karmic Creations Catering to make her famous Tik Tok Spaghetti Bread Bowl.

For the spaghetti with meat sauce:
1/2 lb ground beef (cooked)
1/2 lb ground Italian sausage (cooked)
1 can 15 oz no salt added pasta sauce
1/2 can no salt added diced tomatoes
1 tsp olive oil
2 tablespoons Italian seasoning
2 tablespoons dried parsley
1 teaspoon of salt
1 1/2 tsp sugar
2 tsp smoked paprika
2 teaspoons garlic powder
2 teaspoons onion powder
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes (optional)
1/2 lb cooked pasta

For the bowls:
1 8 oz cream cheese (any savory flavor)
2 cups of mozerella cheese
1 sliced ​​round baker’s loaf
examples (sourdough, hearty bulk Tuscan,

french bread, etc.) make sure it is large enough to sanctify and fill with pasta.

Cook and drain pasta according to package. Put aside.

Add sauce and diced tomatoes to a medium to large saucepan. Add seasonings, sugar and olive oil. Cook the ground beef and sausage, strain the oil and add to the sauce. Let simmer for 10-15 minutes.

Then cut and remove the center of the bread. Dig enough to make room for the pasta. Drizzle the bread with a little olive oil and sprinkle with Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder and a pinch of salt.

Toast the bread for 3-5 minutes on 375.

Then spread the cream cheese inside the bread, then sprinkle mozerella cheese over the cream cheese.

Then add your spaghetti to the bread.
Top with more cream cheese and mozerella cheese. Put it in the oven and let the cheese melt. Once the cheese has melted, remove the bread bowl from the oven and top with Parmesan.

Need a dessert that will feed a crowd? You have it! These Candy Bar Slab Cookies are baked on a baking sheet, so you’ll end up with enough to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth. Plus, these slab cookies feature a winning combination of graham cracker crust, chocolate chips, nuts and…wait…your favorite chopped candy bars. Yum!

What you will need

  • 2 cups graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 stick of butter, melted
  • 2 sticks of butter, softened
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • 1 cup chopped walnuts
  • 1 cup chopped assorted candy bars

What to do

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Coat a 10×15-inch rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine graham cracker crumbs, 1/4 cup granulated sugar and melted butter; mix well. Firmly press the mixture into the bottom of the baking sheet. Cook 8 minutes; put aside.
  3. In a large bowl, beat 2 sticks of butter, 1 cup granulated sugar and the brown sugar with an electric mixer until creamy. Beat eggs and vanilla. Add flour and salt, and beat until well combined. Stir in chocolate chips and nuts. Gently spread over prepared crust. Sprinkle with candy pieces.
  4. Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean. Cool completely and cut into bars.

To note

Planning on crafting these for the big game? It’s awesome! If you want even more ideas, check out our collection of Game Day desserts.

Heathrow and Gatwick: Beautiful French village 4 hours from London consistently named among the best for a romantic getaway https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/heathrow-and-gatwick-beautiful-french-village-4-hours-from-london-consistently-named-among-the-best-for-a-romantic-getaway/ Sun, 06 Feb 2022 07:00:00 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/heathrow-and-gatwick-beautiful-french-village-4-hours-from-london-consistently-named-among-the-best-for-a-romantic-getaway/ With Valentine’s Day fast approaching and England’s gloomy weather set to last for some time, many Londoners are feeling in the mood for a couples getaway in February. Home to the city of love, France is a top pick for anyone looking for a romantic getaway – but Paris isn’t the only romantic place you […]]]>

With Valentine’s Day fast approaching and England’s gloomy weather set to last for some time, many Londoners are feeling in the mood for a couples getaway in February. Home to the city of love, France is a top pick for anyone looking for a romantic getaway – but Paris isn’t the only romantic place you can easily travel to from London.

Perched on the heights of the Monts de Vaucluse, Gordes is an absurdly beautiful medieval village, perfect for a long weekend or a short stay with an added touch of romance. Not only is Gordes only three and a half hours away via London Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted and easily accessible by train – with some February airfares currently as low as £19.99 on EasyJet – it is also centrally located in the magnificent Luberon region.

READ MORE: Get flights to the Spanish islands of Mallorca and Lanzarote for just £9.99 in February and March on EasyJet now

The pretty medieval village of Gordes offers incredible views of the Luberon

Stretching over 600 square kilometers in the south of France, the Luberon is best known for its beautiful ocher landscapes, vibrant lavender fields and traditional French towns and villages that seem lost in time. Unsurprisingly, the magical region has been repeatedly named among the best European spots for a romantic weekend.

Gordes, on the other hand, is considered one of the Luberon’s main destinations to discover thanks to its privileged location on a hill, which offers breathtaking views of the rest of the valley. The pretty village is also often bathed in golden light, making it perfect for a romantic stroll, a sunset drink or lunch and dinner with a view.

The quaint streets of Gordes make the village feel lost in time
The quaint streets of Gordes make the village feel lost in time

You won’t need to sacrifice on the quality of the food either, as Gordes is full of excellent restaurants offering a mix of gastronomy and local cuisine. A particularly well rated spot is The Outsider. Number one restaurant in Gordes on Tripadvisor and winner of its Best of the Best award in 2021, this family restaurant is hidden from the main tourist sites and has five stars in total.

It has everything from a secluded outdoor terrace and friendly service to great food prepared with local ingredients and expertly crafted cocktails. Otherwise, if you’re looking for fine French cuisine, there are plenty of places to choose from, including Le Carillon and Auberge De La Bartavelle.

The Outsider is a hidden restaurant in Gordes run by a husband and wife duo

Both listed in the Michelin guide, they are located a stone’s throw from Goult, either 13 minutes by car or around 1h45 on foot. For those who prefer their meals overlooking the rolling countryside, Restaurant David in the nearby village of Roussillon is also a dream come true.

As for places to stay, Gordes is full of romantic boutique hotels and private accommodation options perfect for couples. For a classic Provençal experience, stay at Jas de Gordes, located in the heart of the Luberon Regional Park, just a five-minute drive from Gordes.

Restaurant David is a great restaurant near Gordes where you can pair good food with even better views
Restaurant David is a great restaurant near Gordes where you can pair good food with even better views

Here you will find acres of wooded parkland with lavender, thyme, rosemary and other fragrant plants. The rooms are bright, fresh and airy with lovely provincial white furniture, small flowers and stunning views.

There is also a heated swimming pool and a large open breakfast room and terrace where you can enjoy evening cocktails. You can also find more charming and secluded properties on Airbnbincluding an incredible 17th century stone pool house which seems straight out of a fairy tale.

In terms of activities, Gordes has something to satisfy all types of travellers. Those who prefer a more relaxed weekend will love wandering the maze of narrow cobbled streets in the village or visiting local historic sites such as Le Château de Gordes.

This sublime stone structure dates from at least the 11th century and features incredible interiors. You will also find a lively village market erected at the foot of the castle every Tuesday.

The Abbey of Notre-Dame de Sénanque is one of the main attractions of the Luberon in Provence
The Abbey of Notre-Dame de Sénanque is one of the main attractions of the Luberon in Provence

Expect fabrics, linens, soaps and lavender, as well as enough breads, olive oil, honey, cold cuts, cheese and wine to organize a picnic. Another must-see is the Abbaye Notre Dame de Sénanque, a historic monastery where monks still live to this day.

In summer, the combination of Cistercian Romanesque architecture and fields of vivid purple lavender make for a particularly stunning sight.

More active visitors to Gordes can also enjoy walking or cycling from the village to other Luberon hotspots such as Fontaine de Vaucluse, a pretty pastel-coloured town on the water. The walk between the two takes five hours from Gordes but is worth it for the quiet paths and scenic end point.

Cycling is a popular activity in the Luberon
Cycling is a popular activity in the Luberon

Popular cycle routes, meanwhile, include a 4.5-hour ride from Gordes to Bedoin through the Provençal countryside and vineyards, and the Gordes Loop Ride. The latter takes you through many of the classic landscapes of the Luberon valley, as well as two picturesque villages.

How to get there

One of the advantages of a weekend in Gordes is the ease of access. You can find regular flights to nearby Marseille Airport from Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted – and most only take around an hour and 55 minutes.

From Heathrow there is a direct flight with British Airways. Alternatively, there is also a EasyJet flight to Marseille from Gatwick, or another from London Stansted to Marseille with Ryanair.

London has it all – the best nightlife, food, drink, events, markets, everything!

But how do you stay on top? Our weekly What’s On, Going Out Out newsletter explains how.

You’ll receive a fully curated newsletter with the most exciting stories, reviews, previews and more – including original content – every week.

And the best piece? It’s totally FREE.

All you have to do is sign up for Going Out Out here.

Those looking for a last-minute romantic weekend can take advantage of EasyJet’s tickets to Marseille in February and March, which are currently from £19.99 at present. It will then take you about an hour and a half to reach the village of Gordes itself by taxi or rental car.

If you don’t mind a slightly longer journey, you can take the train from London St Pancras to Lille (one hour 22 minutes), then change to a TGV to Avignon (four hours). Book your tickets on Trainline here. From Avignon, it takes about 45 to 50 minutes to drive to Gordes, giving a total time of around six hours.

Is there a story you think we should cover? If yes, please email whatson@mylondon.news or at tilly.alexander@reachplc.com

Romantic Phoenix Metro Restaurants Perfect for Date Night https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/romantic-phoenix-metro-restaurants-perfect-for-date-night/ Sat, 05 Feb 2022 14:01:31 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/romantic-phoenix-metro-restaurants-perfect-for-date-night/ For February, Eat Here First is all about romantic, date-worthy dining. Try hipster Mediterranean, chic French and sultry izakaya. Love is in the air and miso-glazed cod is on the table this month, so I’m offering a trio of romantic dinner recommendations based on recent experiences in Phoenix and Scottsdale. In Arcadia, I sipped California […]]]>

For February, Eat Here First is all about romantic, date-worthy dining. Try hipster Mediterranean, chic French and sultry izakaya.

Love is in the air and miso-glazed cod is on the table this month, so I’m offering a trio of romantic dinner recommendations based on recent experiences in Phoenix and Scottsdale.

In Arcadia, I sipped California junmai sake from a cedar box of a Japanese izakaya, chunks of heavenly charred fish that I dipped in ginger butter. In Scottsdale, my dinner partner and I shared a plate of duck breast with roasted plums on the patio of a restaurant in the South of France. On another hike in Scottsdale, I enjoyed pizza and pasta in a bohemian, candlelit space run by a Michelin-starred chef.

When making your dining plans in February, I recommend looking for a reservation at one of these evening dinner spots.

Campo Candlelight Pizza

Imagine walking into a stylish Airbnb in the Italian countryside and finding a Michelin-starred chef hanging out in the kitchen. That’s the feeling I got when I sat down at Campo, a new neighborhood bistro owned by award-winning Valley chef Alex Stratta.

Antique landscape paintings in gilded frames hang next to funky potted ferns, giving the restaurant a vintage Mediterranean look that works best in the dim evening candlelight.

Campo’s pizza is a force to be reckoned with. The team worked with Noble Bread to develop a unique blend of rye and wheat flours as well as type 85 pizza flour for the dough, which is then baked in a Hearthstone oven until the sauce is set. fondue.

We ordered the Marco, which was topped with wide slices of Calabrian salami interspersed with Schreiner’s sausage crumbs and chunks of fresh basil. The crust bubbles and bursts into a fluffy bread puff that stands up to the tomato sauce and generous scatters of oily mozzarella in the best way.

Details: 8260 N. Hayden Road, Scottsdale. 480-597-9195, campoitalian.com.

Review: The Americano is a Scottsdale steakhouse that’s as dramatic as it is delicious

Decadent duck in chic digs at Francine’s

I understand why on a Saturday night, Francine is the place. The Southern French cuisine at this famous restaurant in Scottsdale Fashion Square is just as enticing as the atmosphere, and dare I say it, even more compelling.

Francine’s menu is a collage of recipes from chef Laurent Halasz’s mother, after whom the restaurant is named, skillfully concocted by executive chef Brian Archibald. The cuisine is vegetable and light, made with olive oil rather than the buttery sauces for which Paris is famous.

The whole thing is adorned with edible flowers and scatters of fresh herbs.

Francine is a place where you can feast on oysters and filet mignon or nibble on a simple niçoise salad. The dish that made me swoon was the duck breast.

They looked like beets and tasted like cranberry juice, but the red circular slices on the plate were actually roasted plums. Their deep acidity was a perfect foil for the juicy duck, cooked to a striking rare and split in half to display its redness.

Details: 4710 N. Goldwater Blvd., Scottsdale. 480-690-6180, francinerestaurant.com.

Eat! : Try These 10 Unique Pasta Dishes at Metro Phoenix Restaurants

Impeccable Miso Cod at Nanaya Modern Izakaya

Nanaya opened in the summer of 2020 and specializes in “Japanese comfort foods” like ramen, milk bread sandwiches, robata meat skewers and fried snacks.

The bar occupies a substantial part of the main dining room. The dark wood paneled walls are filled with vintage Japanese posters.

The restaurant is serious about sake, with each selection marked with lines indicating where the wine sits on the sweet/dry and light/rich spectrums. But Nanaya also has an interesting list of drink cocktails that incorporate Japanese flavors like an old-fashioned black sesame and a margarita made with Japanese citrus paste yuzu kosho.

The miso cod is part of half a dozen entrees. It’s glazed in lush miso butter and seared to perfection with layers of gooey flesh and crispy edges. The fish is placed on forbidden earthy rice drizzled with ginger butter.

Sensual and downright flawless in its execution, the refined fish plate helped me understand what makes Nanaya so special. With its wide selection of Japanese dishes and sophisticated atmosphere, it’s an under-the-radar hangout worth checking out.

Details: 3603 E. Indian School Road, Suite B, Phoenix. 602-354-3532, nanayajapanesekitchen.com.

Andi eats: Ethiopian Stew and Seafood Burrito: The 3 Best Bites I Ate in Phoenix This Week

Contact journalist Andi Berlin at amberlin@azcentral.com. Follow her on Facebook @andiberlin, Instagram @andiberlin or Twitter @andiberlin.

Subscribe to azcentral.com today.

Freeman Center chief: ‘It’s a dream come true’ https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/freeman-center-chief-its-a-dream-come-true/ Tue, 18 Jan 2022 12:41:30 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/freeman-center-chief-its-a-dream-come-true/ Fueled only by a small Spanish-English dictionary and a big dream, Edouard Polit packed his bags and flew for the first time after cooking school to leave his hometown of Guayaquil, Ecuador for Europe in 1997. Polit got his foot in the door of his first restaurant in Bath, England, showing up with a pre-written […]]]>

Fueled only by a small Spanish-English dictionary and a big dream, Edouard Polit packed his bags and flew for the first time after cooking school to leave his hometown of Guayaquil, Ecuador for Europe in 1997.

Polit got his foot in the door of his first restaurant in Bath, England, showing up with a pre-written note asking for a job. For months he washed dishes and scrubbed potatoes until he proved himself to earn a role as a kitchen helper, cutting and preparing portions of dishes to be cooked. A few years later, when he decided to leave for training in Switzerland, he was ready to embark on the restaurant business.

The decision to move to another continent taught Polit the importance of pursuing his dreams, a decision that paved the way for Duke University last August to become the director of the Freeman Center for Jewish Life Café.

“This job keeps me alive and wakes me up every morning,” Polit said. “It’s a dream come true.”

The addition of a chef – the first for the Freeman Center – coincides with other updates to the cafe. With a renovated kitchen area, menus have been revamped to include Mediterranean-inspired dishes that change seasonally. The center has also added an espresso machine and signature made-to-order coffees, enhancing the experience at the Triangle’s only kosher dining establishment with meals prepared under rabbinical supervision.

The Ecuadorian-born chef, who worked on the Duke campus for a catering provider in 2014-2015, is fluent in four languages ​​- Spanish, English, Italian and French – and brings a host of international influences to campus after years of stays in restaurants in Switzerland, England and New York. Polit lived in New York for 10 years and worked for three Michelin star restaurants, including Eleven Madison Park.Eduardo Polit's arrival came around the same time as other improvements, including renovations and a revamped menu.  Photo taken by Jack Frederick.

Before joining Duke last year, he worked as an executive chef at Veritas Collaborative in Durham.

“Eduardo has enough experience to work anywhere in the world,” said executive chef Mark Turner, who oversees operations at Marketplace on East Campus, Trinity Café and the Freeman Center. “Having a leader of his caliber is truly a blessing for us.”

Each stop on Polit’s journey has influenced his style of cooking, and selecting fresh ingredients that take a dish to the next level is one of his specialties. Polit first learned to prioritize fresh ingredients from his family, who grew coffee, cocoa beans and made vinegar in Ecuador.

Polit and his father visited local farms and markets, where Polit learned to spot the best produce and ripest vegetables, a skill that would help him leave his mark on the all-kosher cuisine served at the Freeman Center, where he is the first manager trained in the culinary arts to run the operation.Chef Eduardo Polit prepares chicken cutlets and fries on a plate at the Freeman Center Café.  Photo taken by Jack Frederick.

Spending time in French-speaking countries, Polit draws inspiration from a particularly French cooking technique that influences his approach to any dish. One of his favorite dishes to create is ceviche, a Latin American dish that can be adapted to include shrimp or other types of fish.

In one of his first major meals at Duke, Polit crafted a dinner menu to welcome the Jewish Life Advisory Board at Duke, which met for the first time since 2019 in October. Hosting the meeting in the outdoor seating area of ​​the Freeman Center, he served lamb skewers, chicken lollipops, roast red grouper, prime rib, honey maple roasted carrots, skewers of chicken, homemade apple pies, pumpkin and pain au chocolat.

With a fall picnic theme, he cooked everything kosher and from scratch, including pickling vegetables and choosing dishes that wouldn’t get cold quickly, making it a special occasion after not gather in person for two years due to the pandemic.Eduardo Polit teaches a group of Duke students about fresh ingredients at a Chef's Chatter event, when he previously worked at the Penn Pavilion before the pandemic.  Photo courtesy of Eduardo Polit.

“He knocked it out of the park to welcome them back to campus,” said Joyce Gordon, director of Jewish life at Duke. “The attention to detail was amazing.”

Located on the first floor of the Freeman Center for Jewish Life, the Freeman Center Café is open to all for lunch and dinner from 12:00 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 12:00 p.m. to 2:00 p.m. Friday.

At this time, food at the Freeman Center Café is take-out, due to COVID-19 policies. But as Polit settles in, he can’t wait to see the diners enjoy the taste of his hard work in community with one another.

“There’s a sound when you’re in your restaurant that’s beautiful,” he said. “It’s not noisy; it’s a bit of a buzz where you can tell people are having fun. It’s very stable. When you work in a restaurant, you learn to notice it and want it. That’s what I want to see here.

Fluke ceviche recipeEduardo Polit, right, teaches a group of aspiring chefs how to prepare ceviche during a Masterclass in St. Petersburg, Russia.  Photo courtesy of Eduardo Polit.

Mise en place (prepare all ingredients before combining)


2 cups raw fluke cut into 1/4 inch pieces

1/2 cup small green peppers, diced

1/2 cup red onion, thinly sliced ​​rings, rinsed under cold water and drained

1 tablespoon Jalapeno peppers, browned

1/2 cup mini Heirloom tomatoes, halved

Freshly picked, washed and dried cilantro

1/2 cup freshly squeezed lime juice

1/4 freshly squeezed orange juice

1 tablespoon aji amarillo (you can use tabasco)

kosher salt

4 tablespoons of olive oil

2 teaspoons of mustard


In a medium bowl, marinate the fish with 1/2 tsp salt and let stand, then add half the lime juice and let soak for 10 minutes

sprinkle the onions with salt and let them harden for 5 minutes

mix all the ingredients and season.

Use long crispy fried green plantain boats for garnish and plantain chips for a side.

Submit story ideas, dedications, and photographs through our story idea form or write to working@duke.edu.

RESTAURATOR: Eat local + Sautéed shrimps with garlic https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/restaurator-eat-local-sauteed-shrimps-with-garlic/ Thu, 06 Jan 2022 21:43:46 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/restaurator-eat-local-sauteed-shrimps-with-garlic/ NEW ORLEANS— Every day of my life I wear a little button on my shirt, jacket, or waistcoat — sometimes all three — that says, “Eat local.” It is a professional philosophy and an outward statement of personal conviction. I have dozens of Eat Local pins. They stay on my jackets and suits that don’t […]]]>

NEW ORLEANS— Every day of my life I wear a little button on my shirt, jacket, or waistcoat — sometimes all three — that says, “Eat local.”

It is a professional philosophy and an outward statement of personal conviction. I have dozens of Eat Local pins. They stay on my jackets and suits that don’t go through a regular single wear wash cycle. If I attend a funeral I take the button off a jacket, but if not, whether I’m in a t-shirt or shirt, I always wear an Eat Local button. This is who I am and what I believe.

I believe in it so much that I painted an 18 foot high “Eat Local” mural all over the back wall of one of our restaurants.

When I opened the first restaurant in 1987, I didn’t worry about people eating locally. At that time, there were only a few full service restaurants open in my hometown of Hattiesburg. Most of them were independent local restaurants. There were several fast food chains, but for full service restaurants, none of the national corporate restaurant chains had arrived yet.

I opened at the edge of 40th Avenue, which at the time was the city limit. In the early 1990s, as people began to move west into closed housing estates, huge strip centers sprang up and national restaurant chains began to appear along the main hallway. commercial.

There is a world of difference between the concepts of local restaurants and national chains. Restaurant chains are cookie-cutter concepts developed by a corporate team of designers and executives in a distant city, most of whom have never visited – and will never visit – that town or small town. specifically. The chain restaurant at the freeway exit in my hometown looks, feels and tastes exactly the same as the chain restaurant just off the freeway exit in the nearby town, and the next, and the next, from the Atlantic to the Pacific, and all intermediate points.

We are becoming a nation of homogeneous, characterless cookie cutter concepts that serve food at the lowest common denominator level because they have national purchasing power and must respond to shareholders at an annual meeting in New York, Chicago or Dallas. Most laugh at the locally sourced ingredients from farmers and fishermen in the backyards of the towns they are in. National chains are like retailing seed packets. It’s like someone hovers over an interstate exchange near the newer part of town and throws a bunch of corporate chain seeds, and the same stores that are growing in other towns get together and start. to sprout there.

There is nothing original about it. There is nothing specific about this city and its people, unless there are a few photos on the wall awkwardly trying to convey the local color.

At one time, in the not so distant past, all we had in local towns was independent and locally owned cafes and restaurants. They were owned by people who lived in our neighborhoods and exploited by even more people who lived in our neighborhoods. They assumed the character and personality of the town or city in which they were located.

Hardly anyone opens a local cafe these days. It’s sad. The diners of the community have disappeared and we hardly noticed it. We’ve all been drawn to the brilliant themed restaurants with national advertising and studio photography that bears no resemblance to the result that ends up at the table. We have become a seed company that wants the next hot national channel to come to town. When it does, you realize that it lacks the charm and character of local places. But, without access to the capital available for national chains, local restaurants are starting to shut down.

National restaurant chains don’t make a city better and more livable. Independent restaurants owned by local owners do this almost every time.

I’m not talking about fast food franchises. While I’m not a big fan of fast food, there are quite a few that belong to friends of mine who are local. The larger kitchen / chef community would totally disagree with the following statement, but I stand by it. Fast food franchises (especially those that are locally owned) play a role in the makeup of a city. They are affordable and accessible to those who cannot dine in a full service restaurant. And a few of them are pretty good. I have a few friends who own fast food franchises, and I consider them small business owners as well.

It is the full-service national chains that I believe have invaded our culture and robbed many cities of their character and identity.

I am writing this column in New Orleans. My Eat Local button is on the dresser in my bedroom. I always take it off when I come here because it’s redundant. New Orleans is a city that revolves around and celebrates independent, locally owned restaurants. Of course, there are fast food chains and a few national full-service corporate restaurant chains in the suburbs. But what makes New Orleans one of America’s great food towns (# 1 in my book) are the independent, locally owned restaurants – from the corner bar that serves oysters on the half. shell, to the pillars of gastronomy that lasted more than a century.

Before Covid, the parish of Orléans had more than 1,200 catering establishments, or one for every 325 inhabitants. I don’t have the exact number, but if I had to guess, I would estimate that at least 90-95% of New Orleans dining establishments are independent businesses locally owned and run by entrepreneurs who have taken the lead. big risks to open and operate in this very competitive city. The bottom line is that these independent establishments are a big part of what gives New Orleans its character.

No corporate event planners sell their convention attendees in New Orleans, as it is full of the same restaurant chains that can be found in Cleveland, Minneapolis, and Orlando. No. People dream of going to New Orleans for the food and culture. In my experience, the better the food and culture of a place, the more interesting the character.

And character matters, not only in people, but in cities and towns. The next time you decide to dine out, please support your local restaurants and businesses. More than ever, eat local. Buy local. Live local. It matters.


A native of Hattiesburg, Robert St. John is a restaurateur, chef and author. He wrote a column in a weekly newspaper for over 20 years.

Fried Shrimp With Garlic

Yield: 8-10 servings

This recipe uses a store-bought Italian dressing. This dressing is the only way I ate a salad when I was a kid. This is the only app that I use it these days. Purists will scoff, but purists can also whip up a tangy dressing and replace it with store-bought dressing.


• 2 pounds of 21-25 shrimp, peeled and deveined

• 1 teaspoon of kosher salt

• 1 teaspoon of Creole seasoning

• ½ teaspoon of fresh ground black pepper

• 3 tablespoons of olive oil

• 1 ½ tablespoons garlic, minced

• ¼ cup of white wine

• ½ cup of chicken broth

• 1 cup Wishbone Italian Dressing

• ¼ cup unsalted butter, cut into small cubes

• 2 tablespoons of fresh parsley, chopped


1. Season the shrimp with salt, Creole seasoning and black pepper.

2. Place the olive oil in a large sauté pan over high heat. Heat the oil until it starts to smoke. Carefully place the shrimp in the steaming hot pan. Let the shrimp cook without moving them for 3-4 minutes.

3. Add the garlic and stir the shrimp. Cook for another 3 minutes. Add the white wine and let reduce almost completely. Add the chicken broth and Italian dressing and cook until the sauce begins to simmer. Cook for another 3 minutes in the simmering sauce. Add the butter cubes and mix the butter into the simmering sauce.

4. Remove the shrimp from the heat and stir in the parsley. Serve immediately with plenty of toasted French bread for soaking.

Festive recipes for a great Christmas dinner https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/festive-recipes-for-a-great-christmas-dinner/ Sun, 19 Dec 2021 16:00:57 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/festive-recipes-for-a-great-christmas-dinner/ Christmas is just a few days away, and if you haven’t decided what to cook for the holidays yet, I have a few ideas that I hope you find out. I spent the better part of two months imagining my perfect holiday meal – both for cooking and, fate permitting, for serving. I’ve developed recipes […]]]>

Christmas is just a few days away, and if you haven’t decided what to cook for the holidays yet, I have a few ideas that I hope you find out. I spent the better part of two months imagining my perfect holiday meal – both for cooking and, fate permitting, for serving. I’ve developed recipes that all work together – from the moment guests walk in the door until they put on their coats – to create a balanced yet extravagant meal that suits the season.

The first thing the guests will receive is a festive cocktail. This year, is it your place or mine? (brilliant name for a drink) of the Atrium restaurant in Los Feliz. It is made with whiskey, almond milk and maple syrup for a touch of spirit on milk punch or eggnog. While the guests are sipping their drinks, a bowl of classic spiced rosemary nuts will be on the coffee table so they can immediately quench their hunger.

Then, when they’ve settled in, I like to surprise guests with something unexpected: hot sautéed potatoes, drizzled with flaky sea salt, and a platter of frozen raw vegetables. Both are served with Caesar sour cream which acts as a dip; he has anchovies, Worcestershire and Parmesan for maximum umami. A generous appetizer like this also saves me some time to run into the kitchen to reheat and slice last minute for dinner to come.

Once everyone’s ready for dinner, I’ll bring out my Citrus Herb Porchetta with Roasted Lemon “Christmas” Salsa Verde; half sliced ​​for serving and the other half left whole to elicit mind-blowing gasps of “What … ??!” of my friends. Pork looks awesome, but it’s easy enough to prepare – like baking bread, it only requires a few spells of intermittent activity for hours of effortless babysitting.

To serve with such an elaborate roast, I keep the sides simple and comforting. To accompany the pork, this means Polenta With Parmesan and Thyme and a Crisp of Seared Red Cabbage with Fried Chestnut Breadcrumbs. The cabbage is garnished with a fresh lemon juice on the finish and drizzled with toasted breadcrumbs sprinkled with caramelized chestnuts. It’s the perfect complement to the rich polenta with pork and herb butter.

And finally, once everyone has had time to loosen their belts and sip a digestif, it’s dessert time in the form of my Hot Persimmon Cake with Orange and Olive Oil. ‘Olive. It’s an update to the classic persimmon pudding, using a lighter hand with sugar and spices to allow the fruit – the ripe Hachiya persimmons – to shine. The fruit is pureed and mixed into an easy-to-make muffin-style batter. I serve it lukewarm with a few macerated Fuyu persimmons and a spoonful of Grand Marnier whipped cream.

And just when my guests think the night is over and start to leave, I hand them a present on the way out: a slice of my cinnamon, bourbon, and pecan holiday cake. You can call it a fruit cake but I can’t, because it’s so much better than the name suggests. Brown sugar paste is packed with cinnamon and alcohol-soaked fruits like apples, cherries, and golden raisins, so it’s lighter than traditional fruit cakes. And a slice is the perfect amount to gift, because it gives people a taste without overwhelming them with an entire cake.

It’s a perfect Christmas dinner for me. It is a treat for me to cook and for my guests to enjoy it. Hope you also take a photo of some of the recipes – or the whole meal – so the experience of eating it doesn’t have to live on just in your dreams.

Sauteed Potatoes with Caesar Sour Cream Crudity

This holiday appetizer has something for everyone: hot, salty roasted potatoes that are eaten like fries; cold and crunchy vegetables for health; and a rich sour cream dip flavored with anchovy, Worcestershire and Parmesan cheese for a Caesar salad flavor.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 2 hours, mostly unattended.

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Classic Spicy Nuts With Rosemary

These nuts are the perfect bite to keep in a bowl and eat with party cocktails. Their flavor and spices wash over you after a while, which is a fun surprise. Adding rosemary halfway through cooking allows the herb to cook without burning or becoming bitter.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 40 minutes.

A bowl of nuts mixed with glasses of clear liquid.

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Your place or mine?

This cocktail has all the flavors of milk punch, eggnog and a strong Manhattan in one, but with a more spiritual and lighter touch – plus it’s vegan, thanks to the use of milk from almond. Serve it with appetizers at the start of your holiday party or dinner.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 5 minutes.

A bowl of mixed nuts and three cocktail glasses that contain brown liquid

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Citrus and Herb Porchetta with Roasted Lemon Christmas Salsa Verde

This recipe wraps a trimmed pork loin with an entire belly that has been rubbed with a savory paste of wintery herbs, citrus zest, and chili flakes to keep things as light and shiny as possible in such a hearty roast. . The salsa verde brings here a dose of lightness and freshness to the meat.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 1h40, plus 6h30 without supervision and 2 days for dry brining and rest.

A whole porchetta with a slice on the side and a bowl of green sauce

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Polenta with parmesan and thyme

Polenta is an easy and simple side dish that only requires a little stirring to get a good preparation. I like to prepare it hours in advance, leave it on the side of my stove, then reheat it over low heat while I put the rest of the meal together.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 45 minutes.

A blue Dutch oven that contains yellow polenta sprinkled with thyme.

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Sautéed Red Cabbage with Fried Chestnut Breadcrumbs

Crunchy and warming, sautéed cabbage is an easy dish to serve with pork that doesn’t compete with it. I quickly cook it in butter and olive oil and season it with salt and pepper, plus lots of lemon juice to keep it shiny.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 25 minutes.

A dish of red cabbage sautéed with fried chestnut crumbs

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Warm persimmon cake with orange and olive oil

This dessert is an update to the classic persimmon pudding. It’s typically spicy like gingerbread and very sweet, but this version is made with Hachiya persimmon puree, delicately spiced with nutmeg and cinnamon, and brightened up with orange and lemon. It’s baked in a Bundt pan, then drizzled with butter and alcoholic sugar while hot, and served with whipped cream and tangy, crisp Fuyu persimmons.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 1h45.

A brown cake from a Bundt pan, with a slice of cake with whipped cream next to it.

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Cinnamon Holiday Cake with Bourbon and Pecan Nuts

When baking a cake like this, I prefer to use a large Bundt pan, which gives structure to cakes with a dough as heavy as this. (It is also helpful to use the slits in the design when dividing the cake into portions.) Prepare this cake, cut it into slices, and give it as a festive gift – a treat that guests can enjoy at their own. rhythm.
Get the recipe.
Cooking time: 1 hour 15 minutes, plus 5 hours without supervision and 2 days for soaking the fruit.

Sliced ​​fruit cake on a white table.

(Dylan + Jeni / For the Times)

Trina Machacek: Magic Lists: Everyone Needs Them https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/trina-machacek-magic-lists-everyone-needs-them/ Wed, 15 Dec 2021 03:51:59 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/trina-machacek-magic-lists-everyone-needs-them/ Trina machacek By Trina Machacek Tuesday, December 14, 2021 It seems that some sort of shopping is a daily occurrence. Sometimes it’s just window shopping. Sometimes it is about specific and pointed purchases. The act of purchase is generally automatic. It’s the automatic shopping that drives me to overspend. So, I am a list buyer. […]]]>

Trina machacek

It seems that some sort of shopping is a daily occurrence. Sometimes it’s just window shopping. Sometimes it is about specific and pointed purchases. The act of purchase is generally automatic. It’s the automatic shopping that drives me to overspend. So, I am a list buyer. Not just the grocery store. If I go out of town, I not only list what I need, but I also list all the places I want to go or have appointments to go. I have a list to a science. A subtle and somewhat anal science. Corn. Yes, a subtle “but”. I’ll readily admit that there have been a few times I’ve left my thoughtful list on the kitchen counter. Just to find him lying there when I get home. Make fun of me that I forgot olive oil or 3 in one oil. Just as an aside. Never mix these two oils.
A list can be magic. Love your list to Santa Claus. I remember writing a list when I was a tike, but I don’t remember addressing it to Santa. It was like a memo to our parents. Funny that they never asked for a list of the type of car I wanted when I was 16. The point is, I bought my own car. I did, however, use the old family car as a down payment. Magic lists can also be thought of as prayers. A direct correlation can be seen with this letter from Santa Claus. You know, telling either of the two well-known greats, whether they are wearing a red suit and a fluffy or angelic and awesome beard, that you will be as good as you can get if such and such appeared or happened. . Eh? Maybe there is also some interlacing because when you think of both you are pointing north. Yes, it’s a stretch isn’t it. Where is it?
Back to the list and to purchases. I don’t know if anyone else is doing this, but as far back as I can remember when writing a grocery list I see myself coming and going in stores. Preserves, need corn, pineapple and chili. Bread aisle, need a loaf and rolls. HAHA. It doesn’t matter which store you go to, it works pretty well. Even hardware or pet supply stores. While you are sitting there, you can see the aisles you are walking down and enter the items for your list. Then. Then if you see something that is not on the list. Are you buying Do you pass? Do you walk and then come back? Now it’s real shopping.
Buying clothes is not that easy. I mean you can put on your list that you need a new jacket or some new underwear. But when you walk into a store that sells clothes, you’re thrown into a world that’s literally made to take your list, crumple it into a tiny little ball, and tuck it between that soft sweater and the cute, long-sleeved shirt. cuddly that would go too well with the sweater. Then in most clothing stores there are other goodies that call you to the top of your list. Household items, jewelry and shoes. Ah yes shoes. Shoe shopping is an animal that is distinguished from all other purchases.
I don’t buy shoes well. I have however been with a few women who like to shop for shoes. It’s almost indescribable. Almost. It goes a bit like that. At first we go in and there is leather and plastic and a little sparkling smells that seem to have magical powers. I’ve seen normal women have glassy eyes and float from one shoe rack to another. It really is something to see firsthand. Then the fitting begins. This one in blue, that one in taupe. I’m here to tell you that there really isn’t a specific taupe color. Depending on the shoe, it can be light taupe, medium taupe, shiny taupe, or flat taupe. I learned that the flat mole can only come on the flats. I’ve seen simple shoes stacked higher than these ankles featuring angled mirrors as a professional shoe shopper leaves a store. It is magic.
I do my shopping much better if I have a list. Over the past few years, I’ve learned to stick to my list. I save a ton of money this way. Of course, if there is a bakery that offers fresh, hot and snorted French bread. On the list or not, two loaves of bread go home. This is the miracle of the magic of a list.
Trina Machacek lives in Eureka. Her book, “They Call Me Weener,” is available on Amazon.com or by e-mailing itybytrina@yahoo.com for a signed copy.

December is party time | News, Sports, Jobs https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/december-is-party-time-news-sports-jobs/ Mon, 13 Dec 2021 05:12:33 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/december-is-party-time-news-sports-jobs/ Mediterranean Lentil and Vegetable Stew (Photo provided – Yvona Fast) The weather is cool. The days are short and gray. The nights are long. But it’s time for the end of the year holidays! Celebrate with food! Hanukkah is over, but the Solstice, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year celebrations are fast approaching. Americans come from […]]]>

Mediterranean Lentil and Vegetable Stew (Photo provided – Yvona Fast)

The weather is cool. The days are short and gray. The nights are long. But it’s time for the end of the year holidays! Celebrate with food!

Hanukkah is over, but the Solstice, Christmas, Kwanzaa and New Year celebrations are fast approaching.

Americans come from many culinary traditions – our ancestors came from all over the world.

Central European Jews celebrate the miracle of Hanukkah oil with latkes, fried potato pancakes. For a sweeter treat, these can also be made with other vegetables, like carrots or parsnips. And many other fried foods, like jelly donuts, are part of the feast.

In many northern European cultures, solstice celebrations (also known as Saturnalia or Yule) are popular. Mistletoe, log, song and dance are part of Scandinavian traditions. The Romans would relax and exchange gifts to the Saturnalia.

Food tends to concentrate around the fall harvest – roots, apples, porridge, pork and, of course, hot soup to warm you up on cold winter days. Hot cider spiced with nutmeg and ginger – also known as Wassail (translated as “are you well”) – is a popular drink. The custom of bringing this spicy alcoholic beverage from house to house while singing songs is what precedes modern Christmas carols.

Christmas treats from around the world include apple pies (England), Buche de Noel (France), stollen (Germany), melomakarona (Greece), makosh and (Hungary).

Fish is traditionally eaten as a main dish on Christmas Eve in Italy, Poland, Spain and Latin America. In the Philippines, the elaborate Christmas feast often includes a whole roast pig.

Kwanzaa is a Swahili word meaning firstfruits. The party is the brainchild of Dr. Maulana Karenga, professor of black studies at the University of California at Long Beach. It is an effort to bring the black community together. Candles are lit, stories and poems are shared, and the Seven Principles of Kwanzaa are discussed each evening during the festive meal.

Common foods include sweet potato cookies, cornbread, jerk chicken, peanut stew (a tasty West African dish), Cajun catfish, African Creole food, beans and rice. Collared cabbage, Kwanzaa coleslaw, okra, and Jellof rice are common sides.

Traditional Kwanzaa desserts include ragweed, coconut cake, sweet potato bars, peach cobbler, and mango pound cake.

The December holidays of course culminate with New Year’s celebrations on the last day of the year.

In Vietnam, Bahn Chung – rice cakes stuffed with pork, beans, and other delicacies – are traditional dishes for the New Year. Koreans celebrate the New Year with a traditional kimchi soup and rice cakes ( Dduk Gook).

In Portugal, Spain, Italy and parts of Latin America, 12 grapes are eaten at midnight, to ensure the happiness of the coming year.

Italians celebrate with lentils; a vegetable and lentil stew is a common New Years dish. Lentils and beans, symbols of wealth, are eaten in Brazil and Italy. Pork is popular in Austria, where a suckling pig is a symbol of good luck. In Poland and Germany, herring are eaten at midnight to bring good luck. In Holland, special donuts, Olle Bollen, are eaten for a sweet New Year. In America, appetizers and appetizers are typical of New Year’s Eve celebrations.

Mediterranean stew with lentils and vegetables

This vegetarian or vegan dish rich in fiber and low in fat (without Parmesan) is equally suitable for the traditional meatless Christmas Eve meal in Italy, Spain and Portugal, as for New Year’s Eve where lentils are symbolic. some coins.


1 tablespoon of olive oil

1 large onion

1 stalk of celery

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 medium red pepper

2 cloves garlic

1 1/2 cup dried lentils

1 bay leaf

2 cups cubed butternut squash

1 large potato

1 bay leaf

1/2 pound green beans or 1/2 pound kale leaves, skinned from the stems

1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes

1/2 cup chopped fresh basil

1/2 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley (Italian)

Salt and pepper

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese (for serving)

About 1/2 cup sliced ​​olives, for serving


Heat the oil in the bottom of the soup pot over medium-low heat. Peel and mince the onion, and add it. Sprinkle with salt. Cover and cook. Meanwhile, wash and slice the celery; wash, seed and chop the red pepper, and add. Peel and mince the garlic, and add it.

When the vegetables have cooked for about 10 minutes, add the lentils, bay leaf, butternut squash, potato and 4 cups of broth or water. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat to simmer; cook until lentils and vegetables are almost tender, about 15 minutes.

Add the green beans or kale (stripped of the stems and washed) and diced tomatoes. Cook 10 minutes more. Stir in the basil and parsley. Taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary.

Serve in bowls or deep plates, with crisp Italian bread or French baguette. Skip the Parmesan and olives to garnish the top.

For 3 to 4.

To prepare in the slow cooker: place the lentils, broth and the rest of the ingredients except olive oil in the slow cooker. Cook for 10 hours over low heat. Stir in olive oil just before serving.

Braised bacon bacon

Braised greens are a great accompaniment to any meal, but are a traditional South and African American fare for Kwanzaa.


2 or 3 slices of bacon (or 1 to 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil)

1 onion

2 pounds of fresh green vegetables or about 16 cups. Green vegetables can include collard greens, kale, turnip greens, beet greens, swiss chard, bok choy

3 – 4 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup golden raisins

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1/2 cup of broth or water

2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar or balsamic vinegar

Optional: 1 can (14.5 ounces) diced tomatoes; diced ham, for serving; grated sharp cheese, for serving


Wash the greens and roughly chop them. Reserve in a colander.

Place bacon in a deep, straight-sided skillet or pot with a lid. Cook over medium-low heat to melt the fat, about 10 minutes. Remove and drain on absorbent paper. (or use olive oil).

Add the onion to the bacon juice (or olive oil), cover and cook over low heat, 5 to 10 minutes, until tender and golden. Peel and mince the garlic, add it and cook for about a minute.

Add the greens and raisins, sprinkle with salt and stir until softened. Add the broth, cover and cook, 5 to 15 minutes, until tender (this will depend on the type of greens – chard and spinach cook in less than 5 minutes; kale and cabbage can take 15 to 20).

Crumble in the reserved bacon. Sprinkle with vinegar. Add tomatoes and / or ham, if desired.

Serve hot. I like it on cooked pasta.

Basic fruit shoemaker

The peach cobbler is traditional for Kwanzaa. But a fruit cobbler is a wonderful dessert anytime!


5 cups canned peach slices, drained (or 5 cups frozen berries, thawed)

1 tablespoon of maple syrup

1 teaspoon of cornstarch

4 tablespoons of bitter

1/2 cup of milk

1 cup of flour

1 tablespoon of sugar

2 teaspoons of yeast

1/2 teaspoon of salt


Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Butter or oil 9“x 9” baking dish.

Place the peaches (or other fruit) in the bottom of an ovenproof dish. Sprinkle with cornstarch and drizzle with maple syrup.

I small saucepan, heat the milk and butter until the butter is melted.

I mixing bowl, mix the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.

Stir in the mixture of milk and butter.

Place the garnish on the fruit; cook 30 minutes or until golden brown.


Author of the award-winning cookbook “Garden Gourmet: fresh and fabulous meals from your garden, CSA or farmer’s market”, Yvona Fast lives in Lake Clear and has two passions: cooking and writing. She can be found at www.yvonafast.com and joined at yvonawrite@yahoo.com or on Facebook at Words Are My World.

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A is for aromatics https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/a-is-for-aromatics/ Fri, 03 Dec 2021 10:46:09 +0000 https://lephysalisrestaurant.com/a-is-for-aromatics/ I have a lot of cookbooks. My favorite, however, is one of the oldest in my possession, and arguably the most battered. It’s Richard Olney’s The French menu cookbook and the 33 year old inscription is signed by my wife Diane in 1988. She wrote: My dearest Tones, I hope this gives you – and […]]]>

I have a lot of cookbooks. My favorite, however, is one of the oldest in my possession, and arguably the most battered. It’s Richard Olney’s The French menu cookbook and the 33 year old inscription is signed by my wife Diane in 1988. She wrote: My dearest Tones, I hope this gives you – and therefore me! – many happy hours. I love you, Di. We can both attest that his wish came true and remains true. The book collapsed and even the hardcover today is chipped, if not still fried.

This column goes well with this recipe.

My favorite chef, on the other hand – in the context of the contemporary culinary craze of one in two famous cooks being a ‘celebrity chef’, whether his fame makes sense or not – is also, now, one. of the oldest: Marco Pierre White. Ironically, White doesn’t even recognize himself as a “boss” anymore and clearly has little time for the white apron hordes rummaging through the trough of fame. (While doing a cooking demonstration in Cape Town a few years ago, he spent all of his time making a bechamel sauce, seemingly bemused that the public expected more of a complex foie gras terrine or centerpiece of the opera cake. I liked the point he was making: Do you want to cook well? Master the béchamel.)

The French menu cookbook was first published in 1970. Richard Olney was an American living in Paris, and the book – its debut – is one of the most important culinary works of the last century. Some early copies are highly sought after and sell well. It contains a series of menus of French regional dishes, beautifully composed and matched with a selection of wines. Of course, they will have to be adapted to today’s wines, unless you are a billionaire or own a château with a large private cellar.

But the best part of the book is the first chapters, where Olney walks you through the basics of French cuisine. He explains its value in the first paragraph of its opening chapter, French cuisine and menu composition:

“Good and honest cuisine and good and honest French cuisine are the same thing. Certainly there are national dishes, just as there are regional dishes – the sage and onion stuffing and apple pie will forever remain British and American (although there is nothing unique about it. in the first apart from the choice of herbs, and the second is nothing but a Apple pie with a cover), as well as White butter remain French – but it is comforting to realize that the principles of good cooking do not change as one crosses borders or oceans and that the success of a preparation depends only on the knowledge of these principles and personal sensitivity.

And so, he has defeated his own argument that the dishes cited are British and American, while also making the real point he makes: that much of the world’s great cuisine comes from French cuisine. He asserts the rustic beef stew with modest eloquence:

“The stages of its preparation are identical to those of beef bourguignon, carbonnade, rabbit bunny, mutton navarin, Where coq au vin. Potatoes au gratin… ”(as my mother from Yorkshire used to do)“… and gratin dauphinois are the same, just like creamed eggs and onions and tripe eggs; The pot roast is a rustic beef fashionable…” (see, mom, you cooked French) “and dinners of boiled meat and vegetables are found in French cuisine as stews and garbages. “

After a massive explanation of what wine is and the (then) French wine industry, it comes to my favorite section: Mechanical, aromatics and basic preparations. This is where you learn to always have “a sharpening gun” handy – “stroking the blade several times on the steel should become as automatic as brushing your teeth to face a new day” – and how to mince an onion, which should be “first cut in half to create a flat surface against the cutting board, then each half thinly sliced, given a quarter turn, and sliced ​​again”. This is precisely how I always treat an onion, and I forgot that was where I learned it.

Aromatic. Pages 49 to 63. The kind of book opens on these pages if you do not count pages 181 to 290 which fall entirely from the book and need to be picked up on the floor.

“The basic cooking methods don’t change,” writes Olney; “It is the choice of aromatics and the ways in which they are used that distinguish not only national and regional styles, but also the personalized cuisines of individuals. “

As an aside: because some people in my immediate sphere are concerned that braaié chicken might be pink to the bone, I was persuaded, somewhat reluctantly, to cook pieces of chicken first. So I make an aromatic broth, throwing in whole cloves of garlic (pricked with a knife), fresh oregano from the massive bush near my braai, a few pieces of carrot and coarsely chopped onion, a lemon cut into quarters, a bay leaf and star anise, and a few peppercorns, and bring the chicken pieces to a simmer. Once the chicken has been removed to go on the coals, you can remove the solids and reduce the broth to a tasty reduction and use it as a baste, or dip the cooked pieces in it before serving.

“To illustrate some national differences,” Olney continues: “In Italy, garlic cloves are fried in olive oil until they begin to color, then are discarded before the other items. of a stew or sauce are added, only the puff of garlic flavor in the remaining oil to flavor the dish; the French chop or crush it, sweat it in oil without coloring it , to avoid the bitterness of the browned garlic, and let it crumble by slow cooking; the Spaniards chop the garlic, fry it until it is brown and cook it with other ingredients, infusing a preparation with a more violent flavor.

(I love this choice of adjective. It’s the only form of violence you’ll find in these pages.)

Basil also obtains the regional distribution:

“In Italy, it is used for multiple and wonderful uses, often in association with tomatoes, raw or cooked, in particular in Sicily and in the south of Italy but also, or of course, in the Genoese pesto; in France, although it is commonly present in recipes from the 17th and 18th centuries, today basil is traditionally only used in the south, abundantly and exclusively for the concoction of pistou soup, an ancient heritage of Liguria; in Greece, it is planted to ward off flies but is never used in cooking.

Olney makes no mention, understandably, of the use of basil in Thai cooking, which he might have done if he had lived in our time in a world of kitchens within easy reach and of a world of ingredients in our supermarkets.

Oregano near my braai, meanwhile, while “a day before southern Italy and Greece, is so foreign to French use that, although it grows in the wild, scenting the air of all the south of France, few people recognize it in its natural and dried state. and crumbled, it is identified as pizza grass – “pizza grass”. Thus the French respect oregano as much as the Greeks respect basil. Here in Cradock where I live, in the Eastern Cape Midlands, my oregano and basil must be cultivated, but wild garlic grows everywhere, with its tiny garlic-tasting lilac flowers, and it’s luckily drought tolerant. . A nice finish for a cheese pizza, oregano or not, or scattered over a salad.

Master everything in the aromatics section of Olney, mirepoix and duxelles to the primordial hierarchy of vegetables, and you’re well in the way of French cooking, or just cooking, because, as he says, you use the basic technique and then adapt it to your national kitchens or whatever. simply to yours “sensitivity”. Like oregano in chicken broth.

The primordial hierarchy of vegetables? I thought you weren’t going to ask. Says Olney: “Among the aromatic vegetables, the main ones are alliums – onions, shallots, garlic, leeks. Without them we would be helpless in the kitchen. Next, in order of importance, are carrots, mushrooms and celery.

Well, he’s talking about French cuisine. Our culinary world has changed; we have established ourselves all over the planet and the world has come to us, in our stores and in our pantries. But there is still something to be said to know the basics. To cook well, as the great Marco suggested, you must first master the béchamel. DM / TGIFood

Tony Jackman is Galliova Food Champion of the Year 2021. His book, foodSTUFF, is now available in the DM Shop. Buy it here.

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