Toss the potato slices, garlic, onions, rosemary, thyme, and 1 tablespoon of the olive oil together in a mixing bowl. Spread the mixture in a large roasting pan, season to taste with salt, and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
While the potatoes roast, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. When the pan begins to smoke, add the lamb racks and brown about 2 minutes per side.
Remove the potatoes from the oven and pour the wine over them. Arrange the lamb racks on top of the potatoes, leaning them against each other to form a triangle. Return the pan to the oven and cook for another 20 minutes or until the lamb measures 130°F on a meat thermometer. Transfer the lamb to a cutting board to let rest for 5 minutes.
Slice the racks into chops and divide them among 4 plates. Spoon the potatoes, onions, garlic, and herbs onto the plates. Drizzle the lamb with the pan juices and the remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Season to taste with salt.
This simple curry serves as a fine introduction to the Indian home cooking of Meera Sodha, a British cookbook author whose “Made in India: Recipes From an Indian Family Kitchen” was released in 2015. The recipe for this curry, her “ultimate comfort food,” derives from the one her Indian-born mother cooked for Sodha when she was growing up in Lincolnshire and for which she pined for during her college years in London. It provides a thick, gingery, garlic-flecked tomato sauce with deep notes of cinnamon and cumin, and a low flame of chile heat, surrounding small chunks of skinless chicken thigh, with slivered almonds scattered over the top at the end. —Sam Sifton
2 tablespoons unsalted butter or ghee
1 tablespoon neutral oil, like canola
1 teaspoon cumin seeds
2 cinnamon sticks, approximately 2 inches long
2 large white or yellow onions, peeled and finely chopped
1 2 1/2-inch piece of ginger, peeled and grated or minced
6 cloves of garlic, peeled and crushed
2 green cayenne or jalapeño peppers, stemmed, seeded and cut into half-moons
Kosher salt, to taste
¾ cup plus 2 tablespoons puréed tomatoes
2 tablespoons tomato paste
1 ½ teaspoons ground cumin
½ teaspoon ground turmeric
3 tablespoons whole-milk yogurt, plus 1 cup to serve with the meal
1 ¾ to 2 pounds skinless, boneless chicken thighs, cut into 1-inch chunks
3 tablespoons slivered almonds
1 teaspoon garam masala
Pinch ground cayenne pepper, or to taste.
Melt the butter or ghee in the oil in a large Dutch oven set over medium heat, and when it is hot and shimmering, add the cumin seeds and cinnamon sticks. Cook for a minute or two, stirring often, to intensify their flavors, then add the onions. Cook, stirring occasionally, until they are golden, approximately 15 to 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, put the ginger, garlic and peppers into a mortar and pestle with a pinch of salt, and smash them together into a coarse paste. (You can also do this on a cutting board, with a knife.)
Add the paste to the onions, and cook for 2 minutes or so, then pour in the tomatoes, and stir. Allow to cook for an additional 2 to 3 minutes, then add the tomato paste, ground cumin, ground turmeric and another pinch of salt, and stir to combine.
Add the yogurt slowly to the mixture, using a wooden spoon to whisk it into the sauce. It may be quite thick. When it begins to bubble, add the chicken. Lower the heat, put the lid on the Dutch oven and allow the curry to cook gently for 30 minutes or so, or until the chicken is cooked through. Add the almonds and the garam masala, along with a pinch of cayenne, and cook for 5 minutes more or so. Serve with basmati rice or naan, and the additional yogurt.
SERVES 4 Pan- fried noodles go through a two- step tango to reach peak pleasure: first they’re quickly boiled and then they’re thrown into the wok to get their crispiness. It’s in the burning crucible of this wok, endowed with wok hei, that the noodles develop their fragrant satisfying character, commingling under such high temperature with the soy sauce, wine, oil, sugar, and herbs. If anyone asks you which dish embodies Cantonese cooking’s high- wire act, it’s this one.
4 teaspoons light soy sauce
2 teaspoons dark soy sauce
1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil
½ teaspoon Kosher salt
½ teaspoon white sugar
1 tablespoon Shaoxing cooking wine or light white wine
¼ teaspoon ground white pepper
1 lb fresh thin HK-style egg noodles (we use the Twin Marquis brand)
4 scallions, cut in 2-inch long slices separate white part from green
1¼ cup white onion, thinly sliced not chopped
3 cups bean sprouts
NOTE: In our notes on soy sauce (see page 3), we recommended Pearl River Bridge Superior Dark Soy Sauce for dark soy sauce. For an added oomph, we recommend using Pearl River Bridge Superior Light Soy Sauce as your light soy sauce for this recipe.
MIX the soy sauces, toasted sesame oil, salt, sugar, wine, and white pepper in a small bowl and set aside.
BRING a pot of water to a boil and add the noodles. Cook fresh noodles for about 1 minute (or dried for about 2 minutes). Don’t overcook the noodles! Drain, put on a cookie sheet rinse under cold water, drain again very well.
HEAT a wok or large pan over medium-high heat and add 1 tablespoon of neutral oil to coat. Add white parts of the scallion and onion to the pan. Stir fry for about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the noodles to the pan. Stir fry for about 1 to 2 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture and toss continuously for 2 minutes or until the noodles are golden brown. Add the bean sprouts and the rest of the scallions and toss for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the bean sprouts are slightly transparent but still crunchy.
VARIATION: CHAR SIU NOODLES FOLLOW the instructions above, adding 6 to 8 ounces chopped char siu (see page 183) along with the scallions.
Cook shrimp and then remove them before cooking the noodles. Add them back in when adding the bean sprouts.
MOCA COOKS: Pan-Fried Noodles with Wilson Tang and Chef Julie Cole of Nom Wah Tea Parlor
The true salade niçoise is made of all fresh vegetables (never, never cooked), boiled eggs, and sometimes a few anchovies. In local restaurants and cafés it will be served with tuna as well, but that’s a recent addition; tuna fish was too expensive to use until modern times.
You can order a salade niçoise at the restaurant to go with your meal, but it’s just as popular as a complete lunch during the summertime. When you make the salad yourself, if you add potatoes you will no longer have a salade niçoise.
6 tomatoes [tomate]
<omit>6 small local artichokes</omit>
1 cucumber [concombre]
1 green pepper [poivre]
4 small fresh onions [oignons]
3 boiled eggs
8 anchovies filets
60 g black Nice olives
1 sprig basil [basilic]
1 clove garlic [l’ail]
6 tbsp olive oil [huile d’olive]
salt, pepper [sel, poivre]
1. Make a sauce with the olive oil, chopped basil, salt, pepper and a few drops of vinegar, and put into the fridge to get good and cold.
2. Quarter the tomatoes (optionally, salt them lightly before putting them in).
3. Quarter or slice the eggs. Peel the cucumber and cut it into thin slices. Slice the green pepper, the onions and the artichokes (or fèves) into thin rings.
4. Chop the garlic in half and rub the two pieces liberally on the inside of a large salad bowl.
5. Put the ingredients into the bowl, with the tomatoes going in last, and a few anchovy strips on top. Instead of mixing the ingredients, they are usually arranged for color and appearance.
While waiting for the water to boil, crack an egg into a small fine mesh sieve over a bowl. Swirl the egg in the sieve until all the liquidy egg whites have been removed. Then, place the egg in a ramekin.
Stir the vinegar into the water and create a vortex. Add the egg to the middle of the vortex and cook the egg for 3 minutes.
Remove the egg with a slotted spoon and dab it on a paper towel to remove any excess water. Serve immediately.
Alternatively, if making the poached eggs for meal prep or ahead of time, transfer the cooked poached eggs to an ice water bath and refrigerate for a couple of days. When ready to serve, add boiling water to a bowl, then add the cold poached egg and submerge for 20-30 seconds or until warmed through. Remove the poached egg with a slotted spoon, dab dry and serve immediately.