When I started Feast + West, I was (and still am) really fascinated with the food experiences we have on our travels. Being able to recreate the flavors, the dishes from my favorite restaurants at home or on my travels would be really awesome. You can’t always travel every time you have a craving, but it is possible to bring those culinary tales to your table.
For this reason, I often wish every restaurant out there had a cookbook. My cookbook library would be insanely massive, but it would still be awesome. I was asked to join a blog tour for the newly released cookbook, Adventures in Comfort Food: Incredible, Delicious and New Recipes from a Unique, Small-Town Restaurant by Kerry Altiero and Katherine Gaudet. I am really excited to be able to introduce you to this awesome new tome and give you a chance to win it for yourself.
Altiero is the chef and owner of Cafe Miranda in Rockland, Maine. From leafing through this cookbook, Cafe Miranda seems like the kind of place I would love to visit on a road trip. I’ve written before about how much I loved visiting Maine, and Adventures in Comfort Food
gives you so many opportunities to travel there through food.
The book is 240 pages of unique recipes. Each one blends cultures together, putting a fun spin on a classic dish. The names of the dishes in this book make me giggle, and I’m just dying to make more of them. There’s the FBOM, which stands for Fabulous Bowl of Meat, a meaty appetizer made with Thai curry. There’s Jerry Fries, which are fries slathered in chili sauce and bleu cheese. Who wouldn’t be intrigued by dishes called Woo-Tang Clams, Wontons from Space and Vacation in Your Mouth? And then there’s a recipe for Lobster Mac ‘n Cheese that has me really excited to cook lobster again.
But my favorite is this recipe for Deconstructed Nachos. This chip dip would be perfect for all the football watchers in your family who might park themselves in front of the TV on Thanksgiving. I love football as much as the next person, but it’s just not the same without a nice bowl of chips and an awesome dip… right? This addictive snack is essentially nacho toppings cooked and served as a casserole, then eaten with tortilla chips and salsa. It’s amazing. Be sure to check out the recipe after the jump — you won’t regret it. // susannah
P.S. Any of the recipes in Adventures in Comfort Food will show any guest you know how to take food to the next level. Enter to win your own copy today! Good luck.
Here’s how to enter:
- Enter the giveaway through the Rafflecopter widget below. Everyone gets a free entry! You can enter multiple times, through up to six additional entries by following Feast + West on social media. (If you’ve followed in the past, that counts! Just enter the info as prompted.)
- The giveaway is open until Tuesday, Dec. 2, 2014 at 10 a.m. EST. One winner will be chosen at random within 24 hours. The retail value of the prize is $21.99. Prize includes one copy of the cookbook.
- Open to U.S. residents only. Must be 18 years of age as of Nov. 26, 2014.
I was provided with an advance copy of the cookbook and the recipe has been printed with permission of Page St. Publishing Co. This post contains affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking one of them. All opinions are purely my own. Thank you in advance for supporting Feast + West!
Click below to see Cafe Miranda’s recipe for Deconstructed Nachos!
This dish was the solution to a Cafe Miranda problem. We all love nachos (who doesn’t love nachos?), but we couldn’t make them in our wood-fired oven. It turns out that 800°F/427°C will combust your chips. So we came up with this deconstructed way of eating them: beans and cheese in a casserole, with chips to dip in it, salsa on the side. Our customers wanted to know what the staff was eating back there, so we had to start sharing with the public.
- 14 corn tortillas, or a bag of tortilla chips
- Vegetable oil
- ½ lime
- ¾ cup/177 ml Black Bean Ragout (see note)
- 2 slices Cheddar cheese
- 1½ oz/43 g ricotta cheese
- 1 sprig oregano (or a pinch dried, if you have to)
- 1½ oz/43 g mozzarella or Jack cheese, shredded
- 1 poblano pepper, seeded and cut into large random pieces
- ¼ red onion, sliced thinly
- 1 jalapeño pepper, split from stem to tip, not seeded
- If making chips: Cut the tortillas into chip-size wedges. Fry until crisp in vegetable oil heated to 350°F/177°C (if the oil is smoking, it’s too hot). Stir to keep them from sticking together. It will take about 5 minutes. Drain on paper towels.
- Squeeze the lime over the chips, whether you make your own or use a bag.
- Spread the ragout (see note) in a 9-inch/23 cm oven-safe casserole dish. Top with the Cheddar, ricotta and the oregano sprig, then cover with the mozzarella. Place the poblano pieces around the edge of the casserole, shiny side up. Sprinkle the onion over, and artfully place the jalapeño halves on top. Brush the vegetables with cooking oil.
- Place the casserole under the broiler for about 5 minutes, until the peppers are a little charred, the cheese is bubbling and the beans are hot.
- Serve hot (use a trivet!) next to a plate of chips and a bowl of salsa.
To make the black bean ragout, heat 6 tablespoons vegetable oil in a medium pot over medium heat. When it begins to shimmer, add 2 tablespoons minced garlic and stir until it begins to turn golden. Add 1 rib of celery and 1 medium onion — both diced. Cover and sweat them over medium heat until translucent and sweet, 10 minutes. Put in 2 cups dried black beans, 3/4 teaspoon dried oregano and 2 bay leaves. Cover with water. Simmer on low heat, stirring regularly, until the beans are tender, which may take 2 hours or so, depending on your beans. Keep the beans covered with liquid, adding more water as needed. Don’t make it too soupy; you want a substantial stew in the end. When the beans are thoroughly tender and the liquid has thickened, add salt and pepper to taste.
Printed with permission of Page St. Publishing
- Serving Size: 2 to 3