Romanian White Bean Dip – Fasole Batatu

Romanian White Bean Dip - Fasole Batatu

Romanian White bean dip (Fasole Batatu) is a frequent part of a traditional appetizer platter. Romanian’s love their platters to be piled high with cold cuts, rustic meatballs (chiftele), assorted cheeses and often several kinds of dips or spreads.  White Bean dip, along with a simple spread featuring eggplant (salata de vinete), and a colorful … Read more

Salata de Vinete – Romanian Eggplant Dip

Salata de Vinete - Eggplant Dip

Romanian Eggplant Spread, or Salate de Vinete, is a very simple traditional Romania dish. It is similar to the Middle Eastern dish, Baba Ghanoush, but without tahini (toasted sesame seed paste).  This version also includes green onions for a little extra color and flavor.  Salate de Vinete (or Aubergine dip) is a very light spread … Read more

Budinca de Dovlecei – Zucchini Pie

Budinca de Dovlecei is a traditional Romanian food that is similar to crustless zucchini quiche. The difference is less eggs, more vegetables, and a lot more cheese.   In order to pack a lot of zucchini into the recipe, the vegetables are shredded. Excess water is squeezed out of the zucchini and then mixed with … Read more

Chiftele – Romanian Meatballs

Romanian Meatballs - Chiftele

These traditional Romanian meatballs, called chiftele, are pretty unique, as well as being absolutely delicious. Most cuisines have their own version of ground meat rolled into a ball, but there are many regional differences in meatballs The ingredients and the spices in meatballs are a great indicator of the flavors that dominate a region’s cuisine. … Read more

Zacusca – Romanian Eggplant and Red Pepper Spread

Eggplant and Red Bell Pepper Spread

Zacusca is a slow cooked eggplant and red pepper spread. This traditional Romanian dish is made in Autumn when its main ingredients, eggplants and gogosari peppers are in season. Gogosari peppers very similar to red bell peppers, which is what I use in this recipe. During our time in Romania, we came to enjoy having … Read more

New Orleans-Style Cajun BBQ Shrimp

Cajun BBQ Shrimp Recipe

Cajun BBQ Shrimp is one of the many unique and ubiquitous foods for which New Orleans is known. The Crescent City has many famous dishes — Jambalaya, Shrimp Creole, Étouffée, Gumbo, as just a few examples. Seafood really shines here. Crawfish, oysters, and of course, shrimp, play leading roles in Cajun cuisine. This barbecued shrimp … Read more

Buffalo Blue Cheese Hummus Dip

Buffalo Blue Cheese Hummus

I’m a bit of a buffalo wing nut — I love wings. But I’m very particular, too. Wings need to be crispy, the hot sauce must be the perfect mix of heat and flavor, and the accompanying sauce should be blue cheese dressing with chunks of real blue cheese. This hummus recipe takes all of … Read more

Spicy Hummus with Chiles in Adobo Sauce

Spicy Hummus Recipe

Hummus is a versatile dish that is easy to love. It makes a wonderful dip for toasted pita squares, tortilla chip or veggie sticks or can be used as a spread for toasted crostini or sandwiches. The basic recipe, featuring pureed garbanzo beans, or chickpeas, combined with the mild nutty flavor of toasted sesame seeds … Read more

Braised Pork Cheeks (Carrilladas)

Braised Pork Cheek

Slow cooked pork cheeks are a Spanish secret that I can’t believe we hadn’t discovered before a recent trip to Sevilla, Spain. We had ordered Cola de Toro, which is a braised oxtail that is cooked until it’s falling apart, at a small but well-reviewed tapas restaurant. The waiter explained to us that if we … Read more

Gambas Al Ajillo (Shrimp in Garlic Sauce)

Gambas al Ajillo

Gambas al Ajillo (shrimp in garlic sauce) was one of our favorite dishes while traveling in Spain. It was served as one of many selections of tapas, or small plates, served in restaurants and designed to be shared with friends. The smell of garlic filled the air when waiters rushed by with sizzling plates of … Read more