Main Dishes

Japanese Pancake (Okonomiyaki)

Japanese Pancake (Okonomiyaki)

Okonomiyaki is a savory Japanese pancake (okonomi means “what you like” and yaki means “grilled” or “cooked”) made with cabbage and other vegetables and a variety of seafood and meats. In Japan it’s popular street food and is also served in restaurants, some of which let diners choose ingredients and cook the mixture on a personal hot plate. Too often, okonomiyaki is smothered with a thick, sweet sauce.  I prefer this version with a miso mayo topping.  I think you’ll find it to be a great comfort food, either as a starter or main course.

High-Flying Turkey Black Bean Chili

High-Flying Turkey Black Bean Chili

I’ll admit it; I’m a bit obsessive when it comes to chili. Most people have one chili powder blend in their pantry. I have four, all of which I buy online at wholespice.com: Chili Powder Dark; ancho chili powder; Chili California Powder; and Chili New Mexico Powder. You get the idea. But my recipe tester Catherine was having none of it when I suggested this recipe include all four of my chili powder blends. “No,” she said. “I have one blend, just like any other normal person. Either this is going test well with one blend, or it’s not going to fly at all.” Fortunately, it achieved the correct flying altitude with just one blend—whichever one you happen to have on hand—but if you want all three (I can’t resist), look at the Cook’s Note. I love this chili straight up, topped with avocado-cilantro cream, while Catherine likes it best topped with poached eggs. Talk about a protein hit! And for a brain boost, there’s nothing like the choline that both black beans and eggs provide.

Wild Salmon Kebabs with Asian Pesto

Wild Salmon Kebabs with Asian Pesto

Sometimes it’s just fun to play with your food. I want people to eat omega-3 rich wild salmon— it’s great for heart and brain health—and this recipe is a blast. The salmon is cubed, threaded onto skewers, baked for a few minutes, and voilà: instant salmon kebabs. The Asian pesto, with ginger, cilantro, and mint, makes the skewers a kick to eat. I like this dish served with Watercress, Purple Cabbage, and Edamame Salad with Toasted Sesame Seeds. Talk about a color blast!

Simple Scrambled Eggs with Kale

Simple Scrambled Eggs with Kale

You know the feeling: it’s late, you’ve had a long day, you’re a tad hungry, but you’re really not up for anything more than a kitchen drive-by. What’s easy, fast, tasty and healthy? Scrambled eggs! Here’s the key to success: cook your eggs low and slow and they’ll come out perfect (ignore this advice at your own rubbery egg peril). Heat the pan first, drizzle in oil or melt the butter or ghee, then turn down the flame and pour in the eggs (sometimes I even take the pan off the flame for the egg-pouring and initial whipping phase). Do it right and your eggs will have that perfect velvety feel.