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Say YES to the SHEET PAN! Vegetable-forward cooking never tasted so good!
YES, it’s easy: It’s the one-pot meal, reinvented. Along with a sharp knife, a wooden spoon, and a reliable oven, the sheet pan is all you need to get a great dinner (or lunch, breakfast, or dessert) on the table. YES, it’s delicious: The sheet pan uses three techniques – roasting, baking, and broiling – that intensify flavors. It’s pure satisfaction, without the eat. YES! Soup in a sheet pan! And yes, Sheet Pan Chili, No-Boil Mac and Cheese, Spicy Thai Green Curry Potpie, not to mention grian bowls and bahn mi, risotto, tacos, chilaquiles and savory slab pies, breakfast streusel and a Rustic Pear Galette. It’s pure creativity on a sheet pan.
Bits, Bites, and Snacks
Okay, I'm not your mother. I'm not going to tell you not to eat potato skins or nachos or caramelized onion dip for dinner because—you know what? I sure have! So even though this is technically the snack chapter, you can absolutely turn Babaghanouj into a meal with some pita and roasted vegetables, or make a small garden salad to serve with Roasted Pepper, Olive, and Feta Burekas or an Any-Way-You-Like Veggie Turnovers. The Super Seedy Power Bars are definitely satisfying and wholesome enough to be a meal on their own (especially for a power breakfast). Add some steamed rice and a cucumber-tomato salad to the Oven-Roasted Okra Chips with Dill Pickle Dip and there you have it—dinner. And I have been known to add Kale Chips to pesto to add a savory boost. So here you go—a snack chapter that defies titles and refuses to limit its potential to between-meal consumption.
Makes about 16 bites (depending on the length of your baguette)
Blue cheese, basil, tomatoes . . . I mean YUM. With a little smoky salt and the crunch of toasted baguette slices, this is perfection on bread. Here I turn the blue cheese into a thick dressing that gets spooned over a basil leaf (instead of lettuce). A tomato slice goes on top, nearly concealing the blue cheese so when you bite in it's a total explosion of flavor. Use heirloom tomatoes when they're available, preferably in a multitude of hues to brighten your platter and make you smile. (They always make me smile.)
If making these for a party, I often triple the blue cheese dressing and chop some raw veggies to put alongside it. Can you ever have too much blue cheese dip on hand? I didn't think so.
½ cup crumbled blue cheese
3 tablespoons buttermilk, plus extra as needed (see Note)
3 to 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, plus extra as needed
About 1 teaspoon pickle juice, plus extra as needed (if you have a jar in the fridge; optional)
1½ teaspoons smoked salt (preferably a flaky sea salt like smoked Maldon), plus extra as needed (see box)
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus extra for serving
1 baguette, sliced into ¼- to ½-inch-thick slices on a diagonal
2 garlic cloves, halved lengthwise
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
16 large fresh basil leaves
3 very juicy, ripe tomatoes (about ¾ pound), sliced to fit the bread (you want 16 slices)
1. Stir together the blue cheese, 3 tablespoons buttermilk, 3 tablespoons mayonnaise, lemon juice, pickle juice (if using), ½ teaspoon salt, and pepper in a medium-size bowl. The dressing should be on the thick side; add the remaining mayonnaise if needed to make it thicker. Taste and add another tablespoon buttermilk and more lemon juice, pickle juice, or salt if needed. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate until serving (or for up to 5 days).
2. Adjust an oven rack to the upper-middle position and preheat the broiler to high. Lay the baguette slices on a sheet pan. Rub each slice with the cut side of a garlic clove half. Dip a pastry brush or silicone brush into the olive oil and dab it over the bread. Sprinkle with smoked salt.
3. Toast the baguette slices until they are golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes (watch the bread closely as broiler intensities vary). Turn the slices and return the pan to the oven. Toast on the other side until the bread feels dry but isn't yet golden, 1 to 2 minutes. (You don't want the bread to get golden because it will be too crunchy! Better to have one browned side and one not-so-crisp side so your guests can bite in easily.)
4. Remove the toast from the oven and set it aside to cool for 5 minutes. Lay a basil leaf on each piece of toast so it rests on it like a little cup. Spoon a little blue cheese dressing into the basil leaf and place a tomato slice on top. Sprinkle with more salt and pepper and serve.
NOTE: If you don't have buttermilk on hand, combine 2½ tablespoons milk with 1½ teaspoons fresh lemon juice and use in its place.
Get Your Smoke On
A little smoky essence brings a whole new dimension of flavor and captivation to food. Smoked paprika (pimenton) and smoked salt and pepper are pretty widely available in grocery stores and specialty markets. You can even find smoked soy sauce and smoked sesame seeds in some gourmet shops. Lapsang Souchong tea, a smoky black tea, is also wonderful for using in brines (brew the tea) or herby rubs, (pulverize the dry tea with other herbs and spices—this is great as a brine or rub for tofu or as a rub for eggplant or beets). You can even place vegetables on a wire rack, add brewed Lapsang Souchong tea to the sheet pan, cover everything tightly with aluminum foil, and roast the vegetables in a hot oven for a little smokehouse situation. Or try adding soaked wood smoking chips to the bottom of a sheet pan (enclose the chips in an aluminum foil pack with a few holes poked into it to release smoke), place a wire rack on top, and set the food to be smoked on top of the rack, and then roast in a hot oven. From tomatoes to carrots, indoor smoking is a fun way to put your sheet pan to work.
When my kids have had a particularly hard week, I tell them we're having nachos for dinner. Just like that, the sky is blue again! Though nachos may seem like "junk" food, they are actually not that bad for dinner—especially when you top them with a protein- and fiber-packed heap of beans, fresh corn, and veggie crumbles (find them in the freezer section of the grocery store near the veggie burgers). Happy kids make for a happy mom. And sometimes I even make nachos when they're not home—but that's just between you and me.
1 bag (8 ounces) tortilla chips
1 cup veggie crumbles (such as Beyond Meat's Beyond Beef Beefy Crumbles)
2 ears fresh corn, husked, kernels sliced off the cob, or 1 cup frozen corn
1 can (15 ounces) black beans or pinto beans, drained and rinsed
½ cup canned crushed tomatoes
1 teaspoon chili powder
¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
2 cups shredded mild Cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
½ cup crumbled Cotija cheese
½ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Charred Tomatillo Salsa or your favorite store-bought salsa, for serving
Pickled jalapeño chiles, for serving (optional)
Sour cream, for serving (optional)
1. Adjust an oven rack to the upper-middle position and preheat the oven to 400°F.
2. Spread the tortilla chips in a single layer on a rimmed sheet pan.
3. Combine the veggie crumbles, corn, beans, tomatoes, chili powder, and cayenne (if using) in a large bowl and stir together with a wooden spoon. Use the spoon to dollop and spread the mixture over the chips. Sprinkle with the shredded Cheddar and mozzarella cheeses.
4. Bake the nachos until the cheeses melt and begin to bubble and become golden in spots, 6 to 8 minutes. Turn the broiler to high and continue to cook the nachos until the cheeses are browned and molten-bubbly, about 2 minutes more (watch the chips closely as broiler intensities vary).
5. Remove the nachos from the oven and set the pan on a large trivet— tell your guests the pan is hot! (I like to fold 2 hand towels around each side of the pan to remind people not to touch.) Sprinkle the Cotija and cilantro over the nachos and serve with the salsa, pickled jalapeños (if using), and sour cream (if using).
Any-Way-You-Like Veggie Turnovers
Makes 10 turnovers
The flavor of the roasted vegetables in these flaky turnovers is sweet and earthy, the portobello mushrooms offering their meaty taste while the scallion and garlic keep things bright and interesting. I've added spicy-herby Jamaican jerk seasoning, curry powder, garam masala, herbes de Provence, and Chinese five-spice powder to the vegetable filling (and switched up the veggies accordingly—see box for suggestions) . . . Depending on the blend you add, the turnovers take on a different global tone.
For speed and ease, I use store-bought piecrust dough, but when I'm making these for a party or special occasion, you bet they're being stuffed into homemade dough. If you make homemade dough for these, use a recipe that makes enough for a double deep-dish piecrust. If you like your turnovers on the extra flaky side, use puff pastry instead.
3 scallions, ends trimmed, very finely chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium-size portobello mushroom or 5 cremini mushrooms, stemmed and very finely chopped
1 small green bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and very finely chopped
1 small red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and very finely chopped
1 small tomato, cored and very finely chopped
2 teaspoons jerk seasoning or spice blend of choice (such as curry powder, garam masala, ras el hanout, za'atar, Italian seasoning blend, Chinese five-spice powder, or herbes de Provence)
1 tablespoon finely chopped fresh thyme leaves
1 teaspoon ground turmeric (omit it if using a Mediterranean spice blend)
1 teaspoon plus a pinch of kosher salt
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
¼ cup finely chopped fresh cilantro leaves
8 ounces piecrust dough, store-bought or homemade, or thawed frozen puff pastry
1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 375°F. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
2. Stir together the scallions, garlic, mushroom, green and red bell peppers, tomato, jerk seasoning, thyme, turmeric, salt, pepper, and olive oil in a medium-size bowl and turn them out onto the prepared sheet pan.
3. Roast the vegetables until the tomatoes are very soft and have released all their liquid, stirring midway through cooking, about 20 minutes. Transfer the vegetables to a fine-mesh sieve set over a large bowl and let them cool and drain. (Don't press on the vegetables; just let gravity do the work.) Transfer to a small bowl and stir in the cilantro. Line the sheet pan with a fresh sheet of parchment paper.
4. Roll the dough (if it isn't rolled already) between 2 sheets of parchment paper or plastic wrap into a ¼- to ⅛-inch-thick disk. With a 4- or 4½-inch biscuit cutter (or upside-down bowl or plastic container lid), stamp out as many dough circles as close together as possible. Transfer the circles to the prepared sheet pan with a spatula. Gently gather the scraps together, press them flat, re-roll as instructed previously, and cut out as many circles as possible. Discard any remaining scraps. You should get about 20 circles.
5. Scoop 1 heaping tablespoon of vegetables onto the bottom third of each dough circle, leaving a ½-inch edge of dough. Fold the top of the circle over the bottom to enclose the vegetables, pressing the edges together to seal the seam, then pressing the tines of a fork around the seam to make a decorative edge. Freeze the turnovers for 15 minutes or refrigerate them for 30 minutes to chill the dough.
6. Bake the turnovers until golden brown, 20 to 24 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for 5 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely. Serve warm or cool. The turnovers will keep, in an airtight container at room temperature, for up to 2 days.
Spice and Vegetable Combos
The vegetables in the Any-Way-You-Like Veggie Turnovers come together to create a flavor that works beautifully as a foundation for any number of seasonings. Here are some ideas for spice blends and potential veggie additions to give your turnovers that extra note of uniqueness.
Keep the tomatoes and red bell pepper but, instead of the portobello mushrooms and green bell pepper, substitute the following:
Pair This . . .
Very finely chopped shiitakes and snow peas
Chinese five-spice powder
Whole peas and very finely chopped carrots
Very finely chopped eggplant and fennel
Herbes de Provence
Very finely chopped potatoes and whole peas
Indian curry powder
Very finely chopped fennel and portobellos
Italian seasoning blend
Shredded coconut and chopped spinach
Jamaican curry powder
Smashed chickpeas and chopped fresh mint
Ras el hanout
Smashed chickpeas and very finely chopped eggplant
Cheesy Stuffed Potato Skins
Makes 8 potato skins
I used to order potato skins in burger joints, and they'd arrive on a diner-style plate, crispy edged from the fryer—yes, those hollowed shells are usually deep-fried before stuffing—and nearly molten because they were loaded with so much cheese. This version is somewhere between potato skins and a twice-baked potato. It's still indulgent and delicious, just a bit more fancy (as my eleven-year-old son would say) and a little healthier. This is a fantastic party hors d'oeuvre, by the way, made with halved small new potatoes hollowed and stuffed. So adorable!
4 medium-size Yukon Gold potatoes, halved lengthwise
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus extra as needed
½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
⅓ cup sour cream
½ cup shredded Cheddar cheese, plus extra for sprinkling
¼ cup shredded mozzarella cheese
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives, plus extra for garnish
1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 350°F.
2. Slice off a thin sliver from each rounded side of the potato halves so they sit upright. Place the potatoes on a rimmed sheet pan and rub them all over with the olive oil. Set them cut side up and bake until a paring knife slips easily into the center of a potato meeting no resistance, about 45 minutes (if using baby potatoes, they will take about half as long).
3. Remove the potatoes from the oven and set aside to cool for 20 minutes. With a spoon, carefully scoop out the center of each potato half, leaving a ¼-inch border around the edge and a bit of potato in the bottom. Place the scooped potato in a medium-size bowl. Return the shells to the sheet pan, hollow side up.
4. Pour 4 tablespoons melted butter over the scooped potato in the bowl. Season with the salt and pepper. Mash until well combined. Stir in the sour cream, taste and add more salt if needed. Stir in the Cheddar and mozzarella cheeses and the chives.
5. Adjust an oven rack to the upper-middle position and preheat the broiler to high. Dip a pastry brush or silicone brush into the remaining tablespoon melted butter and dab it over the tops of the potato shells on the sheet pan. Sprinkle a few pinches of salt over them and place the shells in the oven. Broil until the shells are golden brown, 4 to 8 minutes (watch them closely as broiler intensities vary). Remove from the oven and set aside. Leave the broiler on.
6. With a spoon, divide the potato filling among the shells, filling each completely without packing the potato mixture in too tightly. Sprinkle the tops of the potatoes with Cheddar cheese and place the sheet pan under the broiler until the potatoes sizzle and begin to get golden brown, 3 to 4 minutes (again watching closely to avoid burning). Remove the potatoes from the oven and serve hot, garnished with chives.
More Potato Toppers
Instead of shredded Cheddar, mozzarella, and chives, try these topper combinations:
For the Cheddar
For the Mozzarella
For the Chives
Finely chopped fresh scallions
Finely chopped fresh basil
Fresh goat cheese
Finely chopped fresh tarragon
Finely chopped fresh dill
Finely chopped fresh cilantro
Roasted Pepper, Olive, and Feta Burekas
Makes 6 burekas
There used to be this Israeli restaurant in Chicago where my dad held court with a bunch of other Israeli hotheads. They'd sit at the table closest to the kitchen and argue about politics, sports, and home remodeling and drink lots of coffee and order plates of hummus and babaghanouj, bowls of lentil soup, and always burekas, which are flaky turnovers stuffed with vegetables and, sometimes, cheese. They spoke in Hebrew; I couldn't understand a word, so I just quietly loaded my plate with all the good stuff and sat, minding my own business, deep diving into the deliciousness.
⅓ cup whole-milk ricotta
¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
3 tablespoons finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese
2 teaspoons roughly chopped fresh oregano, rosemary, or thyme leaves
¼ cup pitted black olives (preferably oil-cured), roughly chopped
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
¼ teaspoon plus a pinch of kosher salt
1 large egg
1 cup roughly chopped roasted red bell peppers (jarred is fine)
1 sheet thawed frozen puff pastry
Flour, for rolling the puff pastry
Sesame seeds, for sprinkling
1. Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and preheat the oven to 400°F. Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment paper or a silicone mat.
2. Whisk the ricotta, feta, Pecorino Romano, oregano, black olives, lemon zest, and ¼ teaspoon salt in a medium-size bowl. Crack the egg into a small bowl and lightly beat it. Add half the beaten egg and the roasted peppers to the cheese mixture and stir to combine. Into the remaining beaten egg, whisk 1 teaspoon water and a pinch of salt to make an egg wash (for sealing and brushing the top of the pastry).
3. Place the puff pastry on a lightly floured work surface and roll it to ⅛- to ¼-inch thickness. Cut the pastry horizontally down the middle, then cut vertically into thirds so you have 6 pieces. Depending on the size of your puff pastry sheet, you will have 6 squares or rectangles—it doesn't really matter. Spoon about ¼ cup of cheese filling onto the bottom third of each piece leaving a ½-inch border at the bottom. Dip a pastry brush into the egg wash and coat the bottom edges and sides with it. Fold the top of each pastry over the bottom to enclose the cheese filling, pressing to seal the edges. Transfer the burekas to the prepared sheet pan, brush the tops with egg wash, and sprinkle with sesame seeds.
4. Bake until the pastry is golden brown, 25 to 30 minutes. Remove from the oven and transfer to a wire rack to cool before serving. The burekas are best eaten fresh, within 1 hour of baking. If you want to make them ahead of time, rewarm them in a 300°F oven until they are warm and flaky again.
Charred Tomatillo Salsa
Makes about 3 cups
I think I go through more tomatillo salsa than red salsa and pico de gallo combined. The acidity in it makes it a great topper or mix-in—have you ever tried guacamole with a spoonful or two of tomatillo salsa mixed in? It's a great snack-y dip, of course, but for a taco bar (see box), Loaded Chilaquiles with Baked Eggs, or even for saucing sheet pan–roasted tofu, tomatillo salsa is an absolute workhorse that takes barely a nod to make. You can also double the batch and freeze half because you will—without a doubt—become as addicted as I am. (It will keep, frozen, for up to 6 months.)
1½ pounds tomatillos, husked and rinsed under cold water (see box)
6 garlic cloves
2 medium-size poblano peppers
2 serrano or jalapeño chiles (jalapeños are milder, FYI)
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2½ teaspoons kosher salt, plus extra as needed
1 cup packed fresh cilantro, including tender stems
1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar, plus extra as needed
Tortilla chips, for serving (optional)
1. Adjust an oven rack to the upper-middle position and preheat the broiler to high.
2. Place the tomatillos on a rimmed sheet pan with the garlic, poblanos, and serranos. Toss with the olive oil and 1 teaspoon salt. Turn the tomatillos stem-side up.
3. Broil until the tomatillos color a bit on top and the poblanos begin to char, about 15 minutes. With tongs, turn the poblanos; leave the tomatillos as they are. Continue to broil until the tops of the tomatillos are blackened and they have begun to pop and deflate, 5 to 8 minutes more (watch the tomatillos closely as broiler intensities vary). Remove the sheet pan from the oven.
4. Transfer the poblanos to a small bowl and cover the bowl with plastic wrap; scrape everything else into the bowl of a food processor (or use a blender). Set both aside to cool for 15 minutes.
5. Uncover the poblanos. With a paring knife, stem the peppers, slit them open lengthwise, and use the tip of the knife to remove the seeds. Peel the peppers (no need to be fastidious—just peel off any skin that comes off easily) and add them to the food processor.
6. Add the cilantro, vinegar, and remaining 1½ teaspoons salt. Process until the mixture is semi-smooth and the cilantro is very fine, about ten (1-second) pulses. Taste and season with more salt or vinegar if needed. Serve immediately with tortilla chips (if using) or refrigerate in an airtight container for up to 1 week.
Oh, That's a Tomatillo
You know that bin of parchment paper–colored husk-covered green tomatoes at the market? Yeah, those. That's a tomatillo! They're wonderfully acidic and tart and make one heck of a good salsa. Look for tomatillos that are firm and taut beneath the husk (peel it back to peek just like you would with an ear of corn), not shriveled, soft, or bruised. Before using, peel off the papery skins and rinse the tomatillos under cold water to remove the sticky coating on the surface. Now you're good to go! In a pinch, you can use green tomatoes as a substitute (and by green I mean unripe tomatoes, not Green Zebra or other green-colored heirloom varietals).
Makes 1¾ cups (or 1¼ cups if strained)
When it comes to eggplant dip, I'm a bit of a baba
- On Sale
- Oct 3, 2017
- Page Count
- 264 pages
- Hachette Book Group