Farro salad — the best yet!

Farro, 1 c, rinsed

Apple cider, 1 c

Bay leaf

Rinse farro and put in pot with bay leaf, apple cider, 2 t salt, and 2 c water. 

Bring to boil covered, then simmer covered for about 30 mins until tender. 

Drain and spread on sheet pan to cool. (May want to chill a bowl for assembly if you are in a hurry!)


radishes, sliced thin

Cauliflower pieces or cherry or grape tomatoes, halved

Basil, parsley and/or mint — a very hearty amount (choose parsley or basil)

Pistachio nuts, chopped

Feta or parmesan, shaved


Lemon juice

Good mustard (or skip)

Olive oil — 4 x lemon juice

Salt & pepper

Mix vinaigrette into farro with cheese and pistachios. (This can sit for 4 hours at room temp, or in refrigerator overnight. Bring to room temp before proceeding.)

Add arugula, herbs, tomatoes (or cauliflower), radish and fold in together. Sprinkle on Maldon salt. 


Charlie Bird’s Farro Salad by Melissa Clark, in NY Times cooking 


Pasta with butter and sage sauce

Pasta for when you are hungry and need to eat pronto with minimal effort.

1/2 # rigatoni (or penne or fettucine) Even better: tortellini!

Optional: Roasted delicata or butternut squash (delicata in thin half-slices; butternut in small chunks, tossed w/ olive oil, salt and pepper and roasted in 425° oven 12+ minutes until tender.)

3 T good quality butter
8 sage leaves

Parmesan, grated


1. Put up pot of water for pasta. Roast squash.

2. Put butter into medium saucepan over medium heat near end of pasta cook time. Cook until foam subsides and before butter turns brown. Add sage leaves, toss and cook for a couple minutes and remove from heat when butter turns brown and smells delightfully nutty.

3. Reserve pasta water in heatproof measuring cup (<1 c)

4. When pasta is cooked, drain and put into saucepan with the butter. Add parmesan and some reserved water — not too much — and toss. Put squash on top. Serve with parmesan at the table. Not bad!


Origins: Marcella Hazan & Mark Bittman NY Times Cooking

Impromptu Thai-ish salad with leftover steak

If someone should give you a cooked steak to take home post-barbecue, this a nice way to see it again.


Lime juice — macerate red onions in this first
Fish sauce, same quantity as lime juice
Soy sauce (just a tad)
Ginger, finely grated
Sambal oelek — or other red pepper product for heat
Brown sugar
Dash peanut oil

Red onions, sliced or diced — macerated in lime juice
Cooked beans, such as cannellini
Watercress, spinach or other greens such as lettuce
Red pepper, diced
Carrot, diced
Radishes, sliced
peanuts, roasted and unsalted
Cold cooked steak, sliced


and Ellie Krieger


Chick pea spinach salad

Preparing for a pot luck, I cooked some chick peas and then while the instant pot was doing its thing, I went outside to do some gardening and planting and cutting lilacs, and playing with the cat, and oh, planting a shrub. I came inside to find that the pot had reached its set 49 minutes oh, 27 minutes ago. Surely overcooked! I released the pressure and found the beans somewhat mushy and was immediately disappointed. Then I found this warm chick pea and spinach recipe that seemed like a good idea.

Then I was hungry and it being lunch time I thought: Hmm, freshly-cooked chick peas, I can serve myself some mushy beans. I went halfway with the ideas in that aforementioned recipe:
Spinach in a bowl sprinkled with olive oil and salt, topped with warm chick peas, to slightly wilt the spinach. Macerated some red onion in lemon juice, went outside and cut some chives; sprinkled beans with smoked paprika and then chives. Added cut up carrot, aforementioned onions, some feta and lots of olive oil and salt. Mmm. IMG_6602

Olive oil, spinach and beans are delicious. The subtle dark tone of smoked paprika sets off the flavor against the bright high-note lemon. I always like two familial flavors such as here red onions and chives. (I think next time I will macerate onions longer, and/or reduce quantity.)


chickpeas, 1 # cooked with 1 T salt & 1 garlic clove (49 minutes in my Instant Pot)

Red onion, cut into pieces, macerated in lemon juice for 2 – 4 minutes.
Smoked paprika (sweet)
carrots, 2 sliced

A weirdly interesting, or interestingly weird and delicious broccoli sandwich

Years ago I would visit Manhattan and stay near the No. 7 Sub shopon Broadway around 27th Street, which is about the size of a closet, where Tyler Kord or his staff would sling a dyno-mite roasted broccoli sub. It was delicious. I tried to get there every visit. Addictive, even.

The sandwich consists of roasted broccoli, pickled lychees, pine nuts, ricotta salata, and fried shallots. I just learned the components recently having purchased Kord’s “A Super Upsetting Cookbook about Sandwiches” in which he irreverently describes his food preferences and techniques. Of course I homed in on the broccoli sub and soon got to work crafting my own version.

I was unclear about the lychees and in various stores I checked out canned lychees and found there were all in sugar syrup and thought: Hmm, that can’t be right. Well turns it is right — you make pickles with ‘em if you are fully on the Kord train. Me, here’s what I did for one person at home:

Roasted broccoli
Pine nuts, lightly toasted
Mayo mixed with honey and apple cider — sweet and tart, kinda like lychee pickles (!?)
Feta (Kord calls for ricotta salata)
Pickled cherry peppers

Spread mayo on bread, layer on remaining ingredients. Grab a bunch of napkins and chow down!

Kord also calls for fried shallots, which I was going to do as he recommends — double fried slices after dipping in corn starch — but I had enough food prep steps and was hungry.

Impromptu soba noodle salad

If you have some leftover flank steak or other yummy protein, try this for lunch:

Soba noodles (buckwheat/wheat), 1/2 package — 4+ oz.  Boil in salted water 6 mins. Then drain, run cold water over, put in bowl, and mix in < 1 T sesame oil

Mushrooms, sliced, about 5 mixture of shiitake and cremini, sautéed in grapeseed oil; add salt
Garlic cloves, 2 minced. Add to mushrooms at end
Red pepper flakes — mix into mushrooms while cooking
Ginger, optional

Prep cool ingredients:
beef, couple slices, cut up
carrot, 1 large grated, some diced
Red pepper, 1/2, small dice
Sesame seeds (optional)
Scallions (optional)

On cooled noodles, mix in some soy sauce and some Bo Ssam sauce or perhaps Chile garlic sauce for spice/vinegar. Mix in mushrooms.

Plate with:
Noodles mixture
Cut-up steak
Grated carrots
Diced peppers
Sesame seeds

On top: squeeze on lime