What’s Cooking: August

chocolate chunk shortbread cookies

 

In the summertime, the last thing we want to do is turn on the oven. That said, there are some recipes we’ll gladly suffer for. These are some of our team’s favorites from the past few sultry weeks.

dining in cookbook

Well, currently my head and heart have been dedicated and devoted to Alison Roman’s Dining In. This week, I made two batches of the Salted Butter and Chocolate Chunk Shortbread, one because everyone was talking about them, and the second because…I get it, I get it, they are delicious! Jackie, Senior Account Manager

strawberry balsamic pie

There is something so quintessential about pie and summertime. Every year, I pull out Four & Twenty Blackbirds’ recipe for strawberry balsamic pie. It’s a perfect crowd pleaser! Netanya, Social Media Manager

fruit salad

I’ve been obsessed for a bit now with salads that combine fruit, tomatoes, cheese and avocado. And I have no intention of stopping. This excellent version from our girl Haley of Brewing Happiness knocked the idea out of the park by adding chunks of country bread for a new take on panzanella. Laurie, CEO + Founder

almond pesto

This time of year, basil grows like a weed in my backyard (how lucky am I?). So I’m making all sorts of pesto variations. I love Deliciously Ella’s take on pesto, made with almonds instead of pine nuts. It has a more delicate flavor than the traditional version—all the better for a light summer meal. Renae, Senior Brand Strategist

Poached Eggs

I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to learn and attempt to make poached eggs. This post and video by Lisa of Downshiftology is the perfect guide: It breaks down all the problems you could have and all the tips you’ll need. Now I can master brunch (in my pajamas)! Anna, Brand Strategist

mediterranean salmon

Salmon en papillote is a year-round staple (so easy and delicious), but we’ve been loving the Roasted Root’s Mediterranean twist. It’s incredibly flavorful and pairs well with leftover grains and leafy greens. Edie, Account Manager

 

 

Cooking the Books: Summer’s 3 Best Cookbooks

p

Summertime cooking is special. It’s less about cooking and more about assembling, using that good farmer’s market produce while the season lasts. The phrase, “thrown together,” comes to mind. For a few blissful weeks, I organize all cooking and eating around stone fruit, basil, sweet white corn, heirloom tomatoes, and all my other favorites.

An ideal summertime cookbook lets you do this. Its recipes are both produce-heavy and flexible enough to accommodate whatever whims you’ve had at the market that day. Here are the three I’ll be using (and probably staining with tomato juice) all season long.

What's Gaby Cooking
Photo: A Cozy Kitchen

What’s Gaby Cooking: Everyday California Food

Gaby writes the type of recipes that inspire al fresco dinner parties with friends and Margaritas on random weeknights (which is basically the point of summer). They’re cravable, colorful, and all about using as much fresh produce as you can get your hands on.

Salad for President
Photo: A Cookie Named Desire

Salad for President: A Cookbook Inspired by Artists

I love jumping into Julia Sherman’s colorful, artistic world where food becomes art and salads receive main-dish status. I’ll make her Heirloom Tomatoes with Crunchy Polenta Croutons until the tomatoes disappear for the season.

river cafe london
Photo: Blackbook

River Cafe London: Thirty Years of Recipes and the Story of a Much-Loved Restaurant

The River Cafe’s simple recipes and focus on good ingredients make this book especially good for summertime, though I’ll use it year-round. I’m also excited to dig into Ruth Rogers’ inspiring words on 30 years running a landmark restaurant, breaking ground for women in food along the way.

What’s Cooking: May 2018

 

focaccia
Salted Focaccia. Photo by Alex Lau.

We can’t help it, we’re so food crazy! Here are the CookIt Crew’s most recent recipe/restaurant/cookbook/cookware obsessions.

What We’re Cooking:

  • This unbelievably delicious, crispy, salty focaccia (photo above) from Bon Appétit (twice in the past month!).
  • This go-to appetizer from The Modern Proper is always a crowd-pleaser.
  • For mornings when we don’t want a caffeine rush, we keep My New Roots’ golden milk spice blend ready to go. It’s surprisingly energizing. (This coming from a bunch of coffee addicts!)
  • All the spring dishes from the Love and Lemons cookbook! We swoon over Jeanine and Jack’s photography.

What We’re Into:

  • Herriot Grace has some of the most beautiful kitchen goods and homeware. We’re obsessed, and can’t wait to pick up a few of their beautiful stoneware plates for summer dinner parties!
  • Atmosphere mists (room sprays) from Fig + Yarrow. We could spend hours in that store. If you aren’t already following their Instagram, you can do that here. You’re welcome.
  • The 2-qt. non-stick ceramic Green Pan saucepan. It’s the perfect size for rice or scrambled eggs, and cleans up so easily. We’ll always love our All-Clad babies, but….
  • The Forest Feast’s cookbook— Gatherings. It has us so ready for outdoor entertaining!

Where We’re Eating:

  • The Bombay Bread Bar, a new restaurant in New York serving Indian cuisine in a Wes Anderson designed space.
  • Just Be Kitchen, a haven for health gurus and paleo-eating Denverites, is now open for dinner! And, they have a new spring-summer menu.
  • Saturday morning at Din Tai Fung is becoming a favorite new brunch tradition.
  • Rosaliné in West Hollywood. One word: ceviche!

What’s Cooking: April 2018

Toast

Fun fact about the CookIt Crew. By day, we’re a bunch of brand consultants, social media pros and account managers. By night, we’re cooks, the kind that think chopping an onion is meditative. So, in every issue, we’ll share some of our cooking/chef/restaurant/recipe obsessions – thinking you might be a lot like us!

What we’re cooking:

  • Zuni Cafe ChickenOn our way out the door recently, the hostess at Zuni in San Francisco handed us type-written copies of the original recipe, bread salad and all. Best way to roast chicken ever.
  • Haven’t met aSmitten Kitchen recipe we didn’t like, especially her recipe for these chocolate peanut butter cookies!
  • We’re obsessed with Athena Calderone’s Cook Beautiful. The photographs are gorgeous, and they’re making us jazzed to eat our veggies.
  • Paleo Gluten Free Eatsis a great resource for creamy and savory Whole 30 recipes!

What we’re into:

  • The Joule sous vide–omg, sous vide carrots and beets, who knew?
  • The Hazy Jane cocktail atTusk in Portland. Reyka vodka, almond, lemon, yogurt, cinnamon, black cardamom and rose water. We’ve been known to have more than two
  • The Joyfull Bakery Parmesan Cheese Crisps, which we first tried at the Fancy Food Show in San Francisco last month. One word: dangerous!

Where we’re eating:

  • Kismet, a cozy corner of a restaurant in East Hollywood serving an eye-opening take on modern Middle Eastern Cuisine
  • Our favorite little spot in the West Village calledBar Sardine. Great cocktails, atmosphere, and small plates.
  • Highland Park’s Côté Est: an up-and-coming LA neighborhood, and one of the most beautiful patios in town. Don’t miss the steak frites.