Tag Archives: Deborah Madison

26 August 2017: Romesco Sauce

2017-Aug-26_FourNightsAWeek_1419Deborah Madison’s newest cookbook, In my kitchen is full of terrific vegetarian (and vegan) recipes. I’ve been a Deborah Madison cooking fan since Vegetarian cooking for everyone, and this book is, in my opinion, a great follow-up.

Sadly, I had never heard of Romesco sauce until this cookbook and a roasted cauliflower recipe calling for it.  As Deborah Madison explains in her notes, this sauce is versatile and can be used for everything from roasted potatoes and leeks to garlic rubbed toast.  In the years since Deborah first created this recipe, her preparations have changed from using fresh tomatoes and a mix of hazelnuts and almonds.  



  • 1 slice country-style white bread
  • Olive oil to fry the bread
  • Sea salt
  • 1/2 cup hazelnuts, toasted and skins rubbed off as much as easily possible
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 1 1/2 tsp group red chile OR red pepper flakes
  • 1 TBSP tomato paste (or a bit more for tasting adjustment)
  • 1 TBSP chopped parsley
  • 1 tsp regular or smoked paprika
  • 2 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled and seeded (could use jarred)*
  • 1/4 cup sherry vinegar
  • 1/2 cup best olive oil


  1. Fry the bread in olive oil until golden and crisp. When cool, grind it with the hazelnuts and garlic in a food processor until fairly fine.
  2. Add the ground chile (red pepper flakes), tomato paste, parsley, paprika, and bell peppers, and process until smooth.
  3. With the machine running, gradually pour in the vinegar and then the olive oil.
  4. Taste and make sure the sauce has plenty of piquancy and enough salt. If you feel it needs a little more tomato paste, add it no more than a teaspoon at a time.
  • * Here’s where Amy is telling you not wuss out on the roasted red peppers because roasting them in an oven is a snap.  Here’s how:  Preheat oven to 450 degrees F. Line a sheet pan with parchment. Now clean and cut the peppers away from the stem and seeds (here’s a video from Serious Eats to show you how).  I usually wipe the insides and the skin side with olive oil. Cook skin sides down for 25 minutes. The outsides should have a nice char to it. Cool them and use. Way better than that vinegar-y bottled stuff that passes for roasted red peppers.

11 May 2017 Tomato and Roasted Cauliflower Curry with Paneer

2017-May-11_Fournightsaweek_0685Long ago, I received Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone as a gift. It became one of my essential go-to cookbooks. So I was particularly excited to hear about Deborah Madison’s new book In My Kitchen. Because this is a brand, new publication, I have not included the recipe – trust me, you will want to purchase this book.

This new cookbook is also an excellent source of vegetarian recipes and cooking. In writing the book, Deborah Madison explains that some of the included recipes have changed because it is easier to obtain “unusual” ingredients.

That was somewhat true tonight, as we sampled Tomato and Roasted Cauliflower Curry with Paneer. As a curry dish, some of the ingredients – ghee, gara2017-May-11_Fournightsaweek_0703m masala, paneer –  are found of course in Indian markets, but they also can often be picked up in regular food stores.

The end product was a warming, vegetarian curry based in tomato sauce. The
combination of spices, onions, garlic not only made for a delicious meat-free meal, it filled our home with a beautiful, spicy aroma.



01 Oct 2011 Cauliflower Gratin with Tomatoes and Feta

Adapted from Madison, D. Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone. (1997). New York: Broadway Books. p 281.

Cauliflower Gratin

Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson Photography

My Comment: I seem to be having a bit of a time management problem these days – and our diet has suffered. The change of the calendar to October is hopefully going to provide some inspiration to reconnect with the important things – eating healthful foods made at home.  Deborah Madison provides this gratin which is a family favorite – we love the creaminess of feta and the saltiness of capers. Have I mentioned cinnamon is my favorite spice?

A note about nutritional information. I am no longer using Weight Watchers points, but through the Calorie Count website, can provide the information Weight Watchers and other nutrition-aware users to track food intake. Enjoy!


2 to 3 TBSP Olive Oil (less is more if you’re asking me)
1 onion, sliced thinly
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1-1/2 tsp oregano
1/8 tsp ground cinnamon
1-15-oz can diced tomatoes (I use Muir Glen)
1 tsp honey
1 TBSP capers, rinsed
salt and freshly milled pepper
1 large cauliflowers (about 1-1/2 lbs) broken into florets
Juice of 1/2 lemon
2 to 4 oz. crumbled feta
Parsley, finely chopped


1. Preheat the broiler and lightly oil a 2-quart gratin dish.

2. Heat oil in a 10-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, garlic, oregano and cinnamon. Cook until the onion is wilted – about 5 minutes. Add the tomatoes, cook for 7 minutes more, then add the honey and capers and season with salt and pepper. Slide the mixture into the gratin dish.

3. Meanwhile, steam the cauliflower for 5 minutes. Set it on the sauce and season with salt and pepper. Squeeze the lemon juice over the top and add the feta. Place 5 to 6 inches under the broiler until the sauce is bubbling and the cheese is beginning to brown – about 10 minutes.

4. Garnish with parsley and serve. (If you are assembling the gratin ahead of time, cover and bake at 400 F until bubbling – about 20 minutes and the finish under the broiler).

Nutrition Information: 

Nutrition Facts
Serving Size 40 g
Amount Per Serving


Total Fat 6.8g, Total Carbohydrates 4.9g, Dietary Fiber 0.8g, Protein 0.5g

09 Aug 2011 Eggplant Agnolotti With Tomato Sauce

Adapted from Madison, D. Vegetarian cooking for everyone. (1997). New York: Broadway Books. p. 472.

09 Aug 2011

Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson.

My Comments: After a summer hiatus, I hope we’re back into the routine of cooking together — lots of salads lately. 

So, there I was with a giant eggplant from our CSA. Adrien & I have different views of eggplant: I would happily eat it several times a week and he only wants to eat it when it is heavily disguised.  As we were going through all our cookbooks, Adrien found this recipe and since he found it, I figured there was a better probability he’d like the result.

I substituted  wontons for homemade pasta dough. I would have purchased a sheet of pasta dough, but that seems to be an item only found at our local Whole Foods. I also did not make the simple tomato sauce. If you have the time and want to follow the recipe suggestions exactly, feel free – but this unadorned version was very tasty!

Copyright © 2011. Adrien Bisson.

Ingredients (for everything but the tomato sauce)

1 pound eggplant, peeled and thinly sliced
Vegetable or olive oil as needed
1/3 cup walnuts
1 cup ricotta (I used part skim)
1/2 cup grated pecorino Romano (plus extra for garnish)
2 eggs beaten (I left these out)
2 TBSP chopped basil
2 TBSP chopped parsley
4 tsp chopped mint
Salt and freshly milled pepper

1-1/2 lbs fresh pasta (made or purchased) OR wonton wrappers

Freshly made simple tomato sauce if you desire)


1. Preheat oven to 400 F. Brush both sides of the eggplant slices with oil, set on a sheet pan and bake until browned on the bottom (about 20 minutes). Turn and brown the other side – about 20 minutes more.

2. Grind walnuts in food processor, then work in the eggplant until fairly smooth. Remove the mixture to a bowl and add the cheeses, eggs (I did not use these), and herbs. Season to taste with sal and pepper. Set aside to cool.

3. Meanwhile either make the pasta dough and fresh tomato sauce if you are using it.

4. To form agnolotti, roll out the pasta dough and cut out 3-inch circles with a fluted biscuit cutter.  If you are using wontons (as I did), go directly to step 5.

5. Place filling on one half of a circle OR wonton, brush edge with water, fold in half and press together.  If you are using the circles, you should then use fingers to bend the half-circle to form a crescent.

6. Cook them in gently boiling salted water for 4 or 5 minutes. Scoop onto a platter interspersed with the sauce (if using), basil and additional grated cheese.

Serves 4 to 6.

Nutrition information from Calorie Count on About.com.

585 calories, 9.9 g fat (sat. 2.7 g), carbs 100, fiber 6.1

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