Warm Lentil Salad with Cognac Bacon Dressing

Warm Lentil Salad with Cognac Bacon Dressing

Today’s Warm Lentil Salad is brought to by the word “guilt”. Well, not so much the word, more the emotion. I suppose it’s a post-holiday inevitability, but food-related guilt is the absolute worst. Food normally makes me happy, but I guess that’s what got me into this shame spiral in the first place.

The guilt hit soon after I returned from Europe. While I whooping it up in Paris with all my pastry pals, the debauchery seemed permissible – not even permissible; it felt expected. What was I going to do? Return from Paris with tales of all the lettuce I encountered? But even if the context supported my dubious eating habits, going hog wild (emphasis on the hog) is not without its consequences. Hence the guilt. Hence the salad.

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Mascarpone Butternut Bucatini

Mascarpone Butternut Bucatini

I know, it’s January now and you’ve endured months of stuffed squash this and pumpkin spice that, but I have one last squash-centric recipe to throw onto the pile. But before you groan, you should know it has cheese. You’re probably into cheese… unless you’re lactose intolerant. In which case, I bet you’re still into cheese but cheese isn’t into you – but I digress. My point is this creamy Mascarpone Butternut Bucatini just wants you to give it a chance. All it wants is to comfort you through this most blustery of seasons. It’s not its fault it’s in cahoots with butternut squash. The squash gives it its velvety texture; its pleasing hint of sweet; its compelling hue. It had to make friends with the butternut – had to! Just humor me with this one and I promise not to so much as look at a squash until September. Deal? Deal!

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Flank Steak Tacos with Chimichurri & Salsa Blanca

Flank Steak Tacos with Chimichurri & Salsa Blanca

Tacos are a blank canvas. With their increasing popularity worldwide and an enhanced interest in Mexico’s culinary history, tacos are experiencing something of a renaissance. Everyone’s jumping on the taqueria bandwagon and, as with any food item that captures public fascination, mutation and innovation are inevitable. Some pretty interesting tacos are coming out of this taco-obsessed moment. And while the argument for authenticity and the pitfalls of cultural misappropriation can certainly be made, people seem to be pretty laid back about the taco. It’s the new sandwich, the new pizza, the new DIY salad bar. You can put pretty much anything on a taco and maintain the moniker. Today’s Flank Steak Tacos with Chimichurri & Salsa Blanca are a celebration of this culinary freedom. A freedom we technically always had but I was once totally unaware of.

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