Blog: Savories

Julia received formal culinary training both in savories and sweets, so she knows how to braise and broil just as well as she bakes. Collected below are several recipes from her Sauce magazine column, Prep School, that earned her a James Beard Award nomination, as well as other kitchen experiments worthy of recording for posterity.

Julia M. Usher

Perfect Pâte á Choux (aka Cream Puffs)

Adapted from the pâte á choux recipe in Madeleine Kamman’s The Making of a Cook, this basic formulation can be used with both sweet and savory fillings simply by tweaking the salt content a bit. Though there are different schools of thought about the ingredients that yield the maximum puff, I subscribe to

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Julia M. Usher

Horseradish Mousse

A casual dollop of this zippy accompaniment does wonders atop smoked fish or roasted or grilled meat. (Its three tablespoons of horseradish pack a punch, so you won’t need much!) But it also “cleans up” well when piped into fancier

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Julia M. Usher

Rhubarb-Ginger Compote

Vacation is for keeping it simple with easy and versatile dishes – especially when you spend your work week decorating lavish treats as I do. After a strictly enforced four-day hiatus from cooking during a recent holiday in Maine, I

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Julia M. Usher

Largely Undoctored Crab Salad

When seafood goes straight from the water to your local market – as it does on my island home-away-from-home in Stonington, Maine – resist the temptation to dress it up with fancy sauces or dips or lots of mayo and other gunk. Instead, let its essence of summer sing out loud and clear

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Julia M. Usher

Cranberry-Pomegranate Salsa

With all the turkey consumed between Thanksgiving and New Year, the world needs a condiment that breaks from the same old cranberry sauce-tradition! This recipe – a mildly hot, reasonably tart, crunchy-creamy blend – was born of a lucky experiment

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Julia M. Usher

Roasted Garlic Mayonnaise (aka Aioli)

My rendition of aioli, though very garlicky, isn’t as biting as some, since the roasting of the garlic bulbs mellows their inherent sharpness. It’s also as delicious atop meat (see my Red, White, and Blue Burgers) as it is mixed into

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Julia M. Usher

Rhubarb-Apple Chutney

I’m not proud to admit to this behavior, but I await the arrival of rhubarb like a spoiled child anticipating the reckless ripping open of presents on Christmas Day. Once I spot the season’s first stalks, my eyes widen, visions

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Julia M. Usher

Red, White, and Blue Burgers

Though perfect for your Memorial Day or Fourth of July fête, this burger is tasty all year ‘round – and colorful, too! The red refers to the roasted red peppers and sundried tomatoes mixed into the meat; the white to

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Julia M. Usher

Roasted Garlic-Chive Cheesecake

Though less common than sweet versions, savory cheesecakes are no more difficult – and just as satisfying. To morph sweet into savory, simply omit the sugar, use crackers or toasted bread in lieu of graham crackers or cookies for the

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Julia M. Usher

Refrigerator Dill Pickles

To the uninitiated, pickles can be off-putting. Any food that vies for blue ribbons at the state fair automatically implies a certain level of complexity. Couple this award-winning potential with the lore of champions relinquishing titles over softness, cloudiness, or

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Julia M. Usher

Cheddar-Chive Pinwheel Biscuits

A handful of ingredients. Check! A minimum of kneading. Check! Plus, a pretty pinwheel pattern on top. Check! Yes, indeed, these one-bowl biscuits meet every prerequisite for fun, no-fuss picnic food! At my recent Memorial Day celebration, I dunked them

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Julia M. Usher

Hard-boiled Quail Eggs with Curry Mayo

A sexy hard-boiled egg? Well, that’s how my good friend described this springtime amuse bouche when I planted it atop his dinner plate last weekend. Come to think of it, there is something pretty alluring about peeling back these eggs’

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Julia M. Usher

Guinness Braised Beef

Now here’s something to stout (oops, shout) about – and just in time for St. Patty’s Day! This recipe harks from my James Beard-nominated column in Sauce magazine, from the article where I put two culinary giants – food scientist

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Julia M. Usher

Pancetta-Sage Mac ‘n Cheese

When asked by my editor at Sauce magazine to develop a soul-satisfying winter dish, I could think of nothing better than mac ‘n cheese. (No surprise, really. I’m a comfort food gal through and through, if you didn’t know already!)

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After nearly six months in development, my new Kitchen Club Collection has arrived! Here’s an overview of some of the cookies you can make with my first kit in the collection, which released just in time for Halloween. Complete with stencils, cutters, and even an instructional video, each kit will provide all you need to make wonderfully rich and layered 2-D, and often 3-D, stenciled cookie designs. 

Stay tuned for more holiday releases in October and November! I hope you love my new club and kits as much as I loved designing them for you! – Julia