Perhaps it's just that Curtis Stone looks like he lives on the beach, or perhaps it's that whenever I think of Australia, I only think of summer. Whatever my weird reasoning, I think I got a sun tan just reading his new cookbook....Relaxed Cooking with Curtis Stone....and relaxed is the key word.
I was in heaven from "first thing in the morning" with granolas, smoothies, caramelized nectarines with yoghurt and honey to "sweet dreams" (the last delicious chapter) with espresso creme brulee, chocolate souffle, green tea ice cream...the list of sweet endings is endless...and every chapter in between has me chomping at the bit.
There are countless weekend breakfasts, brunches, lunches and quick week night dinners that will delight everyone and each dish is so simple you'll never break a sweat, even if it is hot outside.
Just a taste of things to come at my house...I've earmarked plenty, but will definitely try these in the next few weeks...cheesy crepes with prosciutto, sun dried tomatoes and olives; sticky chicken drumsticks; all American baby back ribs (I'm a sucker for all things meaty and sticky); steamed mussels with chorizo and white wine (I'm drooling even now at the thought of picking up local Indian Point Mussels at the market this Saturday); pan fried halibut with black beans and cilantro chili salsa; paella with shrimp, mussels, clams and scallops (all local - it's good to live in Atlantic Canada!)...I could go on forever, but I will stop and share the two side dishes I made to go along with some grilled local lamb chops. There is no recipe for the lamb, but Curtis's way of simple cooking is contagious - just a few ingredients...fresh and seasonal and a little help from fresh herbs - and you're ready to feast.
Curtis's Sauteed Wild Mushrooms with Baby Spinach took less than 10 minutes and was so delicious even though I only used shitake and cremini this time around. And frankly, that probably would have been enough to accompany my grilled lamb chops...I know it will be awesome as a bed for roasted salmon....but I couldn't resist this...
...his Roasted Acorn Squash with Thyme and Maple Syrup....pure candy! and a perfect complement to any grilled fish, chicken or meat.
I think perhaps tonight's dinner will be linguine with garlic shrimp & pesto...drool, drool.