French Delectables to California Cuisine

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Recipes and information from Good Food, Saturdays at 11am on KCRW, 89.9fm

Carla Capalbo is an expert on travelling through Tuscany. She is the author of "The Food and Wine Lover's Companion to Tuscany" published by Chronicle Books.


Kitty Keller is an importer of fine products from Europe.- You can find out more about her products and her company at You can also find some of the products she mentioned at Surfas restaurant supply, 8825 National Blvd Los Angeles (near the Helms Bakery complex.) or at


These recipes are from "Jeremiah Tower Cooks: 250 Recipes from an American Master" published by Stewart Tabori and Chang.

Cooked Fish Pillard w /Ginger, Garlic, & Tomatoes

The original recipe had drizzled lobster butter over it, and since has featured
fresh chilies, Chinese black beans and other ingredients, feel free to make
your own version.

If you cut open ziplock bags or something similar, lightly oil the insides, and
gently pound the fish between.

4 2-ounce slices boneless, skinless salmon fillet, tuna, halibut, grouper, red
snapper, sturgeon, seas bass, or albacore, no thicker than 1/4 inch

3 tablespoons butter
1 cup fish stock
2 ounces------- fresh ginger, peeled, finely chopped
3 cloves finely chopped garlic
2/3 cup chopped tomatoes, skinned & seeded
12 sprigs------ fresh cilantro
salt, freshly ground black pepper
Preheat broiler or oven.
Pound fish slices until an even 1/8 inch thick
Put 4 heat-resistant plates in the oven or broiler until hot, remove and brush
each one with butter.
Season fish with salt, pepper and put one on each plate. Mix the fish stock,
ginger, garlic, tomatoes in a saute pan. Bring to a boil and cook 2 minutes.
Whisk the remaining butter into the sauce and pour it over the fish.
By the time you garnish the plates with cilantro , the fish will be done.


Fish stocks should be brought to a boil as fast as possible so that all the
albumin coagulates and rises to the surface for skimming.

Simmer fir for no more than 30 minutes
Vegetables should be finely chopped to cook entirely, acid from the wine is
necessary if you are to use the stock for making butter sauces, but add it only
after the veggies have given up most of their flavor (otherwise the process won't work).
Leftover stock can be frozen for up to a month.


5 pounds fish carcasses
1 cup finely chopped celery
1 cup finely chopped onion
2 bay leaves
1 sprig fresh thyme or 1/2 tsp. Dried leaves
2 sprigs fresh parsley
1 sprig fresh tarragon or chervil, or 1/2 tsp. Dried leaves.
1/2 tsp salt
1 gallon water
1 cup dry white wine

Wash fish carcasses, removing gills from the heads, under running water scrape
away any blood from the backbone. Put celery, onion and herbs and salt in a pot. Add 1 cup water, cover and sweat the mixture over low heat for 10 minutes. Do not let any browning occur.
Add carcasses and remaining water. Bring to a boil over high heat, immediately-
lower the heat to a bare simmer. Stir the bones gently so that coagulated
albumin rises. Skim off any scum, avoiding veggies or herbs. Simmer uncovered
for 20 minutes.

Add wine, simmer 10 another minutes. Remove from heat, let sit for 5 minutes,
carefully ladle all the stock into a fine strainer over a container. Do not
press down on any fish. Discard the debris. Refrigerate immediately uncovered.
Cover when cold and keep refrigerated or frozen until needed.


These recipes are from "The Minimalist Cooks at Home: Recipes that Give you More Flavor from Fewer Ingredients in Less Time" published by Broadway Books.
Stir-fried Noodles with Shrimp

6 sliced, stemmed dried black, shitake mushroom
12 ounces thin rice noodles
2 tbsp light oil, peanut, grapeseed, corn
1 tbsp minced garlic
12 ounces shrimp, peeled, bite size cut
1/2 tsp. Asian chile paste or crushed red pepper flakes
2 eggs lightly beaten
3 tbs soy sauce, or to taste
2 teaspoons sugar
stock (or water or mushroom-soaking liquid) as needed
salt optional
1 cup bean sprouts , optional
1/2 cup wash dried and torn basil leaves, preferably
Thai basil optional

put the dried mushrooms in a small bowl, cover with
boiling water.- Don't soak fresh mushrooms.
Put the noodles in a large bowl and cover them with hot water. Prepare the other ingredients. Drain
mushrooms when soft, approx. 10 minutes, reserve the liquid, trim and slice.
Put oil in large non-stick skillet on high heat stir in garlic, shrimp, stir for a minute, stir in chile.
Drain and add noodles, cook, stirring for a minute. Make a well in the center of the noodles and pour the eggs into the well. Scramble gradually integrating the eggs and noodles. Stir in soy sauce and sugar. If the noodles are clumpy, add liquid add liquid to separate and become saucy (not soupy) add salt to taste, then stir in bean sprouts and basil, turn off heat and serve.

Stir fried noodle w/ chicken or pork:

For the shrimp, substitute finely chopped or ground
chicken or pork.

Use finely chopped cabbage in place of the bean

For the soy sauce, substitute nam pla (Thai fish
sauce) or hoisin sauce.


1 to 1 1/2 pounds unshelled shrimp
3 tablespoons nam pla (Thai fish sauce) or soy sauce
1 tablespoon sugar
Juice of 2 limes
6 cups torn lettuce or mesclun washed and dried
2 grapefruit, peeled and sectioned, tough white pith removed, each section cut it half
1/4 cup chopped fresh mint
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro
Minced chiles or crushed red pepper flakes, optional
1/2 cup chopped dry-roasted peanuts, optional

1. Put the shrimp in a saucepan with salted water to cover. Bring to a boil, then turn off the heat and let sit for 5 minutes, or until the shrimp are opaque in the center. Cool in the refrigerator or under cold running water, then peel (and devein if you like). Cut the shrimp in half.
2. To make the dressing, combine the nam pla or soy with 2 tablespoons water, the sugar, and lime juice and blend or whisk until smooth.
3. Arrange the lettuce on four plates and top each portion with a few grapefruit pieces, some shrimp, and the mint and the cilantro. Drizzle with the dressing, then sprinkle with a little chile and chopped peanuts, if you like, or pass them at the table.


3/4 pound fettuccine-style rice noodles
3 tablespoons grapeseed, corn, or other light oil
1 pound minced or ground boneless pork or chicken
1 yellow or red bell pepper, stemmed, seeded, and minced
1 eggplant (about 1/2 pound), cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 tablespoon minced garlic
1 12 to 14 ounce can (about 1 1/2 cups) unsweetened coconut milk
Nam pla (fish sauce), soy sauce, or salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Minced cilantro

1. Soak the noodles in very hot water to cover until you-re ready to add them to the stir fry.
2. Meanwhile, pour 1 tablespoon of the oil into a large skillet or wok, turn the heat to high, and heat for a minute. Add the meat the cook, stirring occasionally, until it browns and loses its raw look, about 5 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and set aside.
3. Add another 1 tablespoon of oil to the skillet, followed by the bell pepper and eggplant. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until the pepper and eggplant are browned and tender, about 10 minutes. Remove with a slotted spoon and combine with the meat.
4. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil, followed immediately by the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds. Add the coconut milk. Cook over medium-high heat, stirring and scraping with a wooden spoon, for about a minute. Drain the noodles and add along with the meat and vegetables. Cook until the noodles absorb most of the coconut milk, about 3 minutes.
5. Season with nam pla, soy sauce, or salt to taste, then add plenty of black pepper. Garnish with cilantro and serve.