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what I am cooking currently

A meal to remind me of home

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It has been over 4 years since I relocated to Seattle from California and the PNW is definitely feeling like home now but a part of my heart will always be in the Bay Area and the food there that has shaped my style of cooking. This is a meal that is inspired by our old neighborhood haunt in Oakland, versions of dishes I’ve had there countless times.

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makes 30 

  • 1lb ground beef

  • 1lb ground pork

  • 4oz prosciutto

  • 2 teaspoons fennel seed

  • 2 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon red pepper flake

  • 1 Tablespoon + 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/2 cup fresh parsley, chopped

  • 1/2 cup fresh basil, chopped

  • 2oz parmesan, finely grated, plus more for garnish

  • 4oz bread crumbs

  • 1/3 cup pine nuts

  • 3/4 cup ricotta

  • 4 eggs

  • 1/3 cup milk

  • 2 (28oz) cans whole san marzano tomatoes

  • extra virgin olive oil for finishing

Heat oven to 45oºF.  In a small bowl whisk together the ricotta, eggs and milk and set aside. In a large bowl combine ground meats, fennel seed, oregano, chili flake,  tablespoon salt, parsley, basil, parmesan, bread crumbs and pine nuts. In a food processor, chop prosciutto fine and add it to a the bowl. Mix everything with your hands until it’s just combined then add the ricotta mixture and evenly mix it all together being careful not to over mix or it will become pasty.

Line 2 sheet pans with parchment paper and roll meat mixture into 2oz balls; measured out it’s a scant 1/4 cup each. Space them an inch apart on the sheets and bake in the oven until lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Meanwhile, put the tomatoes in a large dutch oven pot and crush them with your hands into small pieces. If you want a smoother sauce you can run them through the food processor or blender. Season with the remaining 1 tablespoon of salt and bring to a simmer. When meatballs are browned, remove them from the oven and gently nestle them into the tomato sauce. Reduce the oven temperature to 300ºF, cover the pot and bake in the oven for 1 1/2 hours.

To serve, pile into a bowl with the sauce, top with parmesan, basil and a big drizzle of olive oil.


Burrata with asparagus, radish & mint

  • 8oz burrata mozzarella

  • 1/3lb asparagus

  • 6 radishes

  • handful of mint leaves

  • zest of 1 lemon

  • juice of 1/2 lemon

  • sea salt & fresh ground black pepper

  • extra virgin olive oil

Thinly slice asparagus and radish. Arrange burrata and veggies on a platter, sprinkle with mint, lemon zest and juice. Season with salt and pepper and finish with a big glug of olive oil.

salad of avocado, beets, fennel & citrus

  • 3 oranges, I use a combination of blood oranges and cara caras

  • 1 avocado

  • 1 bulb of fennel

  • 3 beets

  • a handful of oil cured black olives

  • sea salt & fresh ground black pepper

  • extra virgin olive oil

Heat oven to 400ºF. Scrub the beets and put them in a small baking dish with a little water, a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of salt & pepper. Cover tightly with foil and bake for about an hour, or until tender and let cool. Peel by rubbing with a paper towel and the skins should slide right off. Cut them in half and slice thinly. Remove the core from the fennel bulb and slice paper thin then set aside. Slice avocado and set aside. Cut off orange peels and piths being careful not to cut too much into the flesh. Then cut oranges in half and slice halves into 1/4″ slices. Remove pits from olives if necessary then coarsely chop. Arrange all ingredients on a platter sort of layering them all together. Drizzle olive oil all over and sprinkle with sea salt and a good crack of black pepper.