One program we run that I eagerly volunteer to staff is the cooking series held at the Delia/Viking Showroom in on 58th & 3rd Ave. in Manhattan. It’s hosted by the lovely Marilyn Scher, who runs the showroom, and Mike Colameco, whose series “Colameco’s Food Show” is on PBS, and who hosts the “Food Talk” show on WOR Radio. You can hear him every day there! Last night’s subject was “Thanksgiving Side Dishes”. It’s not unusual to have vegetables as sides for Thanksgiving dinner, but what was unusual was the simple ways that Mike prepared them - no recipes were used. Here’s what we made:
The hardest part of this dish is peeling the onions. Ours were on the larger side. They were put in a pan with water and salt. Pat of butter added at the end. Nothing else. Though you could add in parsely or another herb at the end for flavor and garnish, ours were outstanding as their plain old selves.
Carrots with Orange Glaze
These started out as “horse carrots” – the big, flavorless kind found at most grocery stores. They were simply sliced and put in a pan, barely covered with FRESH (important detail) orange juice and salt. Nothing else. They cooked at a low simmer for about a half hour, and were pretty much ignored the whole time. The orange juice reduced to make a beautiful glaze.
Possible add-ins include grated or sliced ginger, or fresh pomegranate seeds (at the end to keep them crisp).
Mashed Potato with Celery Root
The potatoes and celery root have similar consistency and cooking time. Both were peeled, chopped in 1-inch cubes and put in a pan with a cup or two of milk (not quite covered) and salt. Nothing else. When they were soft, they were put in a standing mixer (this could even be done with a hand masher, but when you’re at Viking, you try out the deluxe equipment!) They are delicious (and healthier) just like this, but you can stir in some olive oil or butter if you need more richness.
These were cleaned and quartered, tossed in extra virgin olive oil and treated to a grind or two of black pepper. Nothing else. They were roasted in the oven for about 20 minutes (around 400 degrees?) on cookie sheet lined with a piece of parchment paper. They’re done when the tips are turning brown. Salt added at the end. Outstanding.
Cauliflower with Parmesan Cheese
The cauliflower was tossed with olive oil and pan roasted with a little bit of water until the tips began to brown. Salt, pepper, and a generous handful of shaved Parmesan was added to the top while still hot.
Mike also gave us a recipe for winter squash: Peel squash and cut in half, scrape out seeds, then put face down on parchment paper to cook. When tender (poke ‘em!) take out of the oven and cut into 1-inch dice. Toss with a mixture of maple syrup and butter. Salt and pepper. A splash of fresh lime juice.
And, as long as they’re around and you have the oven on, here’s my recipe for roasted squash seeds: Separate seeds from flesh. Do not rinse. Spray a cookie sheet well with cooking spray. Add salt and pepper to taste (or a seasoning blend like a steak rub works nice for this) and toss a bit. Roast until they turn brown.
Hope you can join us for Mike’s upcoming cooking programs at the Delia Viking Showroom.
Thu, Dec. 18 – Delicious, Homemade Healthy Winter Soups
Thu, Jan. 15 – Pasta and Homemade Tomato Sauce
Register at the 92nd Street Y website -click here.