One of things I find funny about my life is that people assume I eat so well simply because my husband is a chef. I will admit that we both love food to a point of
almost obsession, and that certainly affects my eating habits. After all, he is the one who has planned our dinners to the Herb Farm, the French Laundry, Au Pied de Cochon and (coming soon) Willows Inn. But unless I visit him in at his restaurant or guilt him about buying a new cookbook, he rarely cooks more than ramen at home.
And, since I spent many years cooking professionally, I totally understand why. Even on your days off you’re exhausted and, quite frankly, sick of looking at food unless it’s something someone else has made.
For us, this seems to work out perfectly though — I love being the one to cook. I get to play around with new recipes and slip in more fiber (and less butter!) without him there to interfere.
But every once in a while, he surprises me by cooking something epically delicious on a day off. I will come home to the the thermal circulator chugging away, the pressure cooker giving a quiet whistle or homemade raviolis being pressed together with a fresh egg yolk in the center. And it’s always so good, I get a wave of, “I can’t believe I get to eat this at home!”
The dinner he made for me a few weeks ago was one of those meals — though it was incredibly tame by his standards. Nothing was dehydrated or fried in duck fat, and yet it made a serious impression on me, mainly because of the sauce. I guess you could call it a spinach-yogurt sauce, which is totally boring, but perfectly accurate. I don’t know of what else I could name it, but I do know this stuff rocked.
The raw garlic gave it just a little kick, which was tempered by the creamy tangy coolness of the yogurt. The spinach and parsley added a grassy herbaceous quality but gave a lovely vibrancy to the finished product.
This was a sauce that could be almost anything you wanted it to be — make it a little thicker and spread it on a sandwich. Thin it out with more lemon juice and use it as a salad dressing. Drizzle it in a soup or on a plate of grilled vegetables. It was one of those creations that just seemed to taste good with anything — well anything that would taste good with garlic.
He didn’t measure anything — the curse of a chef — but the basics would be:
a clove or two of raw garlic
a hefty handful or three of raw spinach
a handful of parsley leaves
plain yogurt (we used Greek)
salt & pepper
Puree in a blender. If you think it needs something else (chili oil, more lemon, fresh herbs, more greens), add it! Make it yours. It’s totally adaptable.
We served this magically delicious sauce with pan-seared bone-in pork chops, oven roasted potatoes, baby squash and onions. I can’t even express how good it was, but I’ll try: It was so good I ate it for dinner three nights in a row and three times later for lunch.
Yeah, that good.
Here’s the run down…The first incarnation (the picture is terrible — sorry! I was experimenting with a new lens for my camera).
And I made almost the exact same dinner the next night for my friend Oliver:
And then I used the sauce for the rest of the week as a tasty salad dressing:
And each time it was wonderful! Clearly I really enjoyed this sauce with pork, but I seriously can’t imagine it wouldn’t be good with anything savory.
Make it, love it, feel the magic.