Condiments Recipes

Muhammara Recipe (Walnut and Pomegranate Dip) Recipe

Muhammara Recipe (Walnut and Pomegranate Dip)

01.21.14 by Jackie

I had never heard of or tasted muhammara before until I met the folks at California Lavash. Every time I met with their team, I would hear how exquisite it tasted. In all seriousness, when you hear about a combination of walnuts, charred red bell peppers, fresh pomegranate seeds, lemon juice, garlic, mint, salt and pepper, it’s difficult to imagine how it couldn’t taste amazing!

To thicken the texture of the dip, I added bread and extra virgin olive oil, and balanced the flavors with dates, a hint of ground cumin and red chili powder. You could use it as a dip served with toasted pita bread or cucumber and celery sticks but in my case, I used it as a spread for a roasted lamb sandwich. It was delicious!


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Tương Muối Ớt Lá Chanh (Spicy Lime Dipping Sauce Recipe) Recipe

Tương Muối Ớt Lá Chanh (Spicy Lime Dipping Sauce Recipe)

01.08.14 by Jackie

In Vietnamese, "tương muối ớt lá chanh" would literally translate to "sauce salt chile lime leaves". It's a spicy sauce I came up with by using the kaffir lime leaves from our garden. They're so fragrant and very useful in Asian cuisine. I usually use them for making broth, but this time, I blended them with fresh green chiles, coarse sea salt, garlic, limes and a little sugar to balance the flavor of the sauce. I used it as a spicy dipping sauce for crab that I simply steamed. 

It's crab season so I stocked up on a lot of crabs that I cracked and stored in sealable bags for making crab cakes and soups in the future. 

If you have the space to plant a kaffir lime tree and you're into Asian cooking, go for it; it's a good investment. Plus the plant doesn't take too much space and it's almost maintenance-free.


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Mushroom Bruschetta Recipe Recipe

Mushroom Bruschetta Recipe

12.04.13 by Jackie

Making mushroom bruschetta is a great excuse to use leftover bread with earthy, seasonal ingredients. For this version, I started with the regular procedure: I cut day-old bread into large slices, then toasted and rubbed them with garlic. But instead of using the common tomato and basil topping, I spooned on a warm mushroom mixture. I also topped the bruschetta with dry-fried Emmental cheese and drizzled on a spicy green chutney. 

The warm mushroom is flavored with onion, celery, Italian parsley, mascarpone cheese, and a drizzle of Riesling wine. You could use the same flavor combination in a savory tart or beggar's purse. Let your imagination run wild!


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Roasted Whipped Eggplant Dip Recipe Recipe

Roasted Whipped Eggplant Dip Recipe

10.29.13 by Jackie
Today, my husband Lulu came home a little earlier than I expected. While he played with baby Aria, I concocted an easy dip for them to munch on before dinner. First, I roasted an eggplant. I let the eggplant cool and gathered the pulp. Then I mashed the mixture with the back of a fork, which was a reasonable substitute for a good arm workout (I'm finally back to my gym routine. Yay!). Lastly, I incorporated whipped cream for a light, almost airy eggplant dip.

I served the dip with warm pita bread and Persian cucumber sticks. If you'd like a fancier look, you could use it as a filling in phyllo dough cups or pre-baked puff pastry tartlets. Either would be an elegant item to serve at parties.

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Artichoke and Spinach Tart Recipe Recipe

Artichoke and Spinach Tart Recipe

07.31.13 by Jackie

This artichoke and spinach tart is packed with flavor. I added roasted garlic and chopped sun-dried tomatoes and covered the mixture with mozzarella. As a reminder of the flavors in the filling, I garnished the tarts with the main ingredients and a sprinkling of a few sunflower seeds for texture.

Making savory tarts is so easy when using store-bought puff pastry. Simply raid your pantry and refrigerator and smartly pair your favorite ingredients. You'll be able to accomplish two things: complete a delicious meal and get rid of leftovers at the same time!


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