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Oct 20, 2009 07:53 AM

Recipe so good you've made it at least 3 times: COTM Edition

If you're a COTM'er, and you're like me, you've amassed an impressive collection of cookbooks. There are several, Dunlop, Vietnamese, Casas, I revisit repeatedly, but there are some, even ones I loved, I never get back into because I kind of forget about them.

So, in the interest of getting good use out of some great books, I thought I'd throw the question out there. Which recipes from which books do you find yourself returning to and why? I'm also curious which recipes you find especially easy or quick now that you "have them down". If there are recipes you loved so much you keep MEANING to return to them, I suppose are worth a shout-out, too.

Anyway, call out your favs, please. I'll chime in later, when I have access to my books.

Here's a link to the COTM archive to refresh your memory.



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  1. I'll start with Dunlop's "Land of Plenty" as it's the COTM I cook out of the most. I'll have to look through RCC later. Recipes from LOP I've made at least three times/on a regular rotation.

    Dan Dan Noodles (both versions)
    "Cooked Chicken for Sichuanese Appetizers" - this section has a lot of no-cook sauces which I use for leftover roast or poached chicken for lunches
    Strange Flavor/Bang Bang Chicken
    Ants Climbing a Tree
    Dry-Fried Beef Slivers
    Dry-Fried Chicken
    Tai Bai Chicken
    Hot and Numbing Tiny Fish (I use shrimp)
    Fish Fragrant Eggplant (my all-time favorite eggplant recipe)
    Dry-Fried Green Beans
    Chives with Bacon
    Stir-Fried Water Spinach (I do all sorts of vegs, usually cabbage) with Chile and Sichuan Pepper
    Ma Po Tofu

    2 Replies
    1. re: Rubee

      You have some of my favs on there! Dan Dan Noodles, Ma Po Tofu, and Dry-Fried green beans would also be on my list.


      1. re: The Dairy Queen

        Haven't made as many from Dunlop's RCC - Revolutionary Chinese Cooking- but these are my 3x favorites:

        Spicy Coriander Salad (really good on fish tacos!)
        Yueyang Hot-Dry Noodles
        Numbing-and-Hot Chicken
        Peng's Home-Style Bean Curd
        Cabbage with Vinegar (fast and easy side dish - stir fry cabbage with chiles, sprinkle w/Chianking vinegar. I usually use thinly sliced green cabbage)

    2. Molly Stevens, All About Braising, that World's Best Cabbage recipe (just bought the ingredients to make for tomorrow) and her Veal and Ricotta Meatballs (one of my most requested recipes by friends). Mario Batali's veal meatballs braised in milk (with cornichons and pistachios in them). All three are great comfort food, easy to make, foolproof and repeatedly delicious. From the Casas books, the Lomo de Cerdo en Adobo (marinated pork loin) (Delicioso, I think) and the warm mushroom salad drizzled with concentrated balsamic (Tapas) have been great dinner party items, delicious, attractive but quick and easy. Also planning to make Mario's lamb shanks with oranges and olives a few times this winter, made it at least twice last winter, it's my favorite lamb shanks recipe yet. I don't always participate in COTM but those books alone are giant additions to my repertoire and I'm glad we are revisitng at least one this winter, I'll probably revisit all of them! Great thread idea, TDQ.

      1. Great idea for a thread. I'll get started with a couple books:

        Into the Vietnamese Kitchen:

        Steamed Salmon with Garlic and Ginger - I've made this many times, and have also used the cooking method (v. healthy, quick and easy) with other kinds of fish and other flavours, so to speak.

        I lent my other Vietnamese book to a friend - but, off hand, the "quick" chicken pho, the grilled eggplant salad with scallions, the cucumber salad on the same page, her dipping sauce, and the scallion noodles.


        Boeuf a la Nicoise
        Fava Bean Puree
        Wild Salmon Salad with Beets, Potato, Egg and Mustard Vinaigrette
        Wild Salmon a la Lutece
        Grilled Pork Burgers with Rob's Famous Coleslaw
        Roasted Pear Salad with Endive, Hazelnuts and St. Agur
        Grossi Potatoes
        Grilled Duck Breasts (I've not made the whole recipe again, but use her method for cooking duck breasts now.)
        Roasted Beets w/ Horseradish Creme Fraiche (I make this quite often)
        Hazelnut-Brown Butter Cake (So easy, so delicious - I usually don't serve it with fruit)

        Hazan - from memory

        Tomato and Onion Sauce (the one with the butter and onion halves)
        The tomato sauce with sauted onion slices
        Her basic risotto recipe
        Bolognese Sauce

        5 Replies
          1. re: ChefJune

            No, I made it once, but, even though I've tried many many roast chicken recipes (though not the Zuni one), I still prefer my husband's method - which is cooking it at very high heat for a rather short time. The skin is always crispy, the meat always juicy.

          2. re: MMRuth


            Frank Stitt's "The Southern Table":

            Pimiento Cheese (though I omit the cream cheese)
            Watermelon Margaritas
            Orange Things (a cocktail)
            Flounder with Bread Crumbs and Sauce Gribiche
            Flounder with Clam Chowder Sauce
            Spicey Baked Oysters with Carmelized Onions
            Chicken Saute with lemon, capers and bread crumbs - never reported on it, but my husband just loves it.


            Olive Oil Mashed Potatoes
            Saffron Mashed Potatoes
            His crepe recipe (first time I'd made crepes, and it works, so I've stuck with it)
            Roast Best End of Lamb with Eggplant and Basil Cream Sauce
            Salmon in Pastry with Currants and Ginger
            His Hollandaise sauce - foolproof, IMO.
            I have to mention the duck soup recipe from Second Helpings - it's quite similar to the Grouse Soup recipe in Roast Chicken.

            1. re: MMRuth

              MMR: Hazan's pesto recipe changed the way I feel about pesto. Stirring the cheese in at the end instead of using the processor or blender made a heavenly difference, especially in the texture. It's never gummy.

              I don't know if the pesto recipe is in the COTM Hazan, I only have two of the older books: The Classic Italian Cookbook and More Classic Italian, etc. The volumes I have were published in the late 70s.

              1. re: oakjoan

                It is the COTM book. I've had mine since the early 90s, and it's in about five pieces.

            2. What a great idea! But a time-consuming exercise. I can't believe so many have responded already. I've been going through the list systematically and am only up to August '07. At this rate I'm going to need to make a New Year's resolution complete this project.

              4 Replies
              1. re: JoanN

                Pace yourself, JoanN. There's no rule that you have to pack it all into a single post!


                1. re: The Dairy Queen

                  Good idea, TDQ. Here's my list so far, from the COTMs of 2006 and 2007:

                  Julia Child: Cassoulet—I’ve made this recipe over and over, pretty much as written, even though you can now buy ingredients such as duck confit and saucisson that just weren’t available when I made this the first few times.

                  Schlesinger & Willoughby: From Thrill, and in rotation long before COTM, Grilled Rum-Soaked Shrimp with Mango-Lime Relish

                  Sunday Suppers at Lucques: Where to start? Kabocha Squash and Fennel Soup; Winter Squash Risotto; Braised Chicken with Saffron Onions; Roasted Pear Salad; Barramundi with Winter Vegetables; Herb Roasted Rack of Lamb; Onion Tart; Potato Puree; and of course the Braised Shortribs. And even though I’ve only made them once (lack of access to outdoor grill), I’m including the Grilled Pork Burgers since I know they’ll be made at every possible opportunity.

                  Zuni Café Cookbook: In addition to the chicken and bread salad, of course, NYEve Gougeres; Raw Favas with Salami; Standing Rib Roast of Pork; Endive and Fuyu Persimmon Salad; Carol’s Pickled Onions; Brandied Cherries

                  Baking from My Home to Yours: Sticky Buns (and I make her Golden Brioche Dough for loaves even when I’m not making the buns; Caramel Crunch Bars

                  All About Braising: World’s Best Cabbage; Short Ribs Braised in Porter Ale; Seven Hour Leg of Lamb

                  Essentials of Classic Italian Cooking: Even before COTM, Baked Green Lasagne with Meat Sauce, Bolognese Style was a go-to party dish. Still is.

                  1. re: JoanN

                    Is the cassoulet from MTAoFC? That COTM included all Julia Child books.

                    1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                      Yes, it is. Sorry for forgetting to mention it.

              2. One of my three editions of the Pei Mei Cookbook containing recipe for Beef and Broccoli.I have made this recipe over 100 times.

                1 Reply
                1. re: classylady

                  I have those books, must have a look. I love Fu Peimei, her cooking show was so fun - but her books were not used in the Cookbook of the Month threads, so this would be better off in the original "Recipe so good you've made it at last 3 times" thread I believe.