Algerian lamb stew

This is a recipe that I have been cooking for 20 yrs. There is nothing better on a cold winter day than a hearty stew cooked in the Bulgarian earthen pot.

Scallops with English peas purée and porcini mushrooms

This is a seafood variation of the Duck breast with mushrooms and English peas, and like that recipe, it uses ideas from two previous recipes: Duck breast with lavender and honey, and English peas purée with mint and Bulgarian feta.

Gazpacho of tomatoes and watermelon

As a good Bulgarian I eat tomatoes all summer long, and my husband makes fun of me for never getting tired of the Bulgarian tomato salad (with a twist).  This recipe mixes two of the favorite things that Bulgarians combines with feta cheese – tomatoes and watermelon.

Squid ink pasta with tomato-fennel-calamari sauce

This dish is a variation of the the Squid ink pasta with tomato-fennel-saffron sauce and pan fried shrimp. Here, chef Mark Doraszelski and I substituted the shrimp for calamari, and it was a very successful experiment. Ever since I discovered a new source for squid ink, our local fish monger in Noe Valley Billingsgate, I have…

Duck breast with mushrooms and English peas

I cooked this dish for my husband’s birthday.  It uses ideas from two previous recipes: Duck breast with lavender and honey, and English peas purée with mint and Bulgarian feta.

Hamachi crudo

This is a very quick and easy appetizer that is a great crowd pleaser. The slight difficulty is finding sashimi-grade hamachi (yellow-tail tuna). In San Francisco, my go-to fish monger is Billingsgate.

Vernal family farms fava beans

My colleague Mike Vernal recently invited us to his house and we were sent off with a bag of fresh fava beans. Nothing says spring better than fresh fava beans and English peas. I have quite a few English peas recipes (Risotto with English Peas, Linguine with English peas, preserved lemons, and pancetta, Chilled English…

Romano bean and potato curry

This dish can pass for Indian cuisine although the inspiration behind it purely Bulgarian: I just substituted the sweet paprika in the original Bulgarian recipes for curry. This is the kind of vegetarian stew that I grew up on.  Beans, lentils, potatoes, peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, okra, Romano beans, were cooked in endless combinations and variations, commonly known as gyuvech (гювеч). 

Risotto with dungeness crab

As I promised in the original risotto post the possibilities are endless.  Dungeness crab risotto is fresh,  luxurious and indulgent dish.  I have to say that I was introduced to Dungeness crab by our dear friend Wendy who has been hosting us for crab night for years.  I learned from her that the California Dungeness crab season is during  the “r” months: November to April.

Quince Jam

Quince fruit is inedible raw but it makes a great preserve, and jam, and of course, membrillo. My grandmother used to make quince jam. You probably assumed she was a great cook who inspired my cooking passion. In a way she did… because she hated cooking and was an atrocious cook, so someone in the…