Two Melon Soups

This soup is all about presentation. It will look like it came out of a restaurant kitchen but is surprisingly easy to pull off. To make the melon strips, draw a vegetable peeler over a wedge of peeled melon.

Serve With


Duck Confit with Braised Lentils

For a neater presentation, before cooking the duck, place the tip of a paring knife at the bone end of the drumstick and pierce through the skin. While maintaining pressure, rotate the leg to cut through the skin and create a clean cut around the bone.

Serve With


Gruyère Herb Puffs

These pretty little puffs are made from choux pastry, which is also used for cream puffs.

Serve With


Beef Ribs with Barbecue Sauce

Many recipes for beef ribs grill them as a rack and cut them up before serving, but some cooks like to cut the racks into ribs and grill them individually to make them extra crispy. The mildly hot spice mixture rubbed on the ribs complements the tangy barbecue-style sauce used to coat them near the end of grilling. 

Serve With


Crispy Chicken Thighs

What’s the secret to chicken thighs with nicely crisped skin? Sear them, skin side down, on the stovetop and then roast in a hot oven. For a satisfying weeknight supper, serve the chicken with Pan-Roasted Broccoli with Garlic.

Serve With


Roast Chicken with Lemon and Thyme

As with any simple dish, the quality of the ingredients for this classic Tuscan supper must be as superb as possible. Serve this chicken with simple sides such as garlic roasted potatoes and braised greens. Pour a young red wine, such as Rosso di Montepulciano, or a crisp white, such as Tuscan Chardonnay. 

Serve With


Scallop, Mango and Avocado Salad

Look for uniformly sized sea scallops about 1 1/2 inches in diameter. They should be pale ivory or have the lightest hint of pink, with a mild, sweet scent. The combination of scallops, mango and avocado results in a particularly rich salad. For a lighter course, omit the scallops.

Serve With


Baked Rigatoni with Fennel, Sausage and Peperonata

Golden brown and bubbling, this comforting dish is welcome at the table any time of year. Sweet Italian sausage, colorful bell peppers and fragrant fennel add heft to this baked pasta. A touch of cream finishes the dish and rounds out the tangy tomato sauce.

Serve With


Italian Braised Short Ribs

Meaty short ribs go well with the robust flavors of traditional Italian cooking, and slow cooking coaxes them to fall-off-the-bone tenderness. For an extra flourish, garnish each serving with gremolata—lemon zest, garlic and parsley that have been finely chopped together—and serve atop polenta.

Serve With


Grilled Three-Pork Burgers

These burgers, made with ground pork shoulder, chorizo and bacon, pack a lot of flavor. Letting the mixture rest in the refrigerator allows the seasonings to marry and develop. If fresh chorizo is unavailable, use a link of fresh, hot Italian sausage, increase the garlic to 4 cloves and double the quantity of smoked paprika.

Serve With


Oysters on the Half Shell with Mignonette Sauce

Folk wisdom holds that oysters may only be eaten safely during months with the letter "r" in their names. Although modern methods and standards for their cultivation now make them safe to eat year-round, the shellfish will be at their flavorful best in winter, when the coastal waters from which they are harvested are coldest and freshest.

Serve With


Bitter Greens with Duck Breast and Cherries

In this main-course salad, sweet cherries and bitter greens complement the richness of seared duck breast. For the bitter greens, try red Asian mustard greens, watercress or dandelion leaves torn into bite-size pieces, or a blend. You can also use additional whole baby arugula leaves.

Serve With


Churrasco-Style Steak with Chimichurri

Chimichurri is a ubiquitous condiment in Argentina. With its bright acidity and bracing garlic and herb flavors, it enlivens and adds flair to churrasco, or South American-style grilled meats.

Serve With