Eat Good Food

Pan Bagnat Sandwich Recipe

sandwich

Pan bagnat, or “bathed bread,” is the Provençal sandwich found at every bakery and market in the region. A sandwich in name but packed with tomatoes, local bell peppers, black Niçoise olives, anchovies and tuna, pan bagnat is basically a salade Niçoise on crusty bread. What’s not to like!

Here’s how to make your own.

Pan Bagnat

2 ripe tomatoes, cored and thinly sliced crosswise
1 (5-oz.) can olive oil-packed tuna, drained
1 small red onion, thinly sliced
1⁄2 cup arugula
1⁄3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 rustic baguette, split
1 small bulb fennel, cored and thinly sliced crosswise
2 hard-boiled eggs, thinly sliced crosswise
8 salt-cured anchovies, briefly soaked to remove salt, then dried
1-2 tbsp Nicoise olive powder
Freshly ground black pepper and Kosher salt, to taste

Sprinkle tomato slices liberally with salt and transfer to a colander; set aside to drain for 30 minutes.

In a small bowl, break up tuna with a fork. In another small bowl, whisk together oil and mustard; set dressing aside.

Scoop the insides from the bread loaf and reserve for another use. Place tomatoes evenly over the bottom of the bread and then top with arugula, fennel, and red onion; spread tuna over top, then top with egg slices, anchovies, and Nicoise olive powder.

Pour dressing evenly over ingredients, and season with salt and pepper; cover with top of bread, pressing lightly. Wrap tightly and allow time for flavors to mingle before slicing in quarters.

Recipe adapted from Saveur Magazine

Eat Good Food

Stocking the Winter Pantry

As the seasons change, so does our hunger — and so does our cooking. During the colder months, we like to stock our pantry with items that help to create the comforting dishes that winter harkens: warming spice blends to enhance winter stews and soups; freshly milled polenta to pair with roasted root vegetables, hearty beans, or braised greens; new extra virgin olive oil, “olio nuovo”, perfect for dressing winter salads; and other ingredients and flavorings to enhance your winter cooking.

Read on for ideas on getting the most out of your winter cooking.

BEVERAGES
Cozy up with these delicious cold-weather beverages.            

Hot chocolate: One of the great pleasures in winter is warming up with a cup of rich hot chocolate. David Lebowitz’s recipe for Parisian chocolate is just perfect!

Parisian Hot Chocolate

2 cups whole milk
5 ounces bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped
Optional: 2 tablespoons light brown sugar                                                                                     

Heat the milk in a medium-sized saucepan. Once the milk is warm, whisk in the chocolate, stirring until melted and steaming hot. For a thick hot chocolate, cook at a very low boil for about 3 minutes, whisking constantly. Be careful and keep an eye on the mixture, as it may boil up a bit during the first moments. Taste, and add brown sugar if desired.   Serve warm in small demitasse or coffee cups.

Chai: Originating in India, masala chai with its blend of spices and hot milk is a delicious and warming beverage for winter. Traditional recipes vary, but chai starts out with a base of strong black tea simmered together with milk, sugar, and spices like cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg, star anise, and cloves.

Turmeric spice tea: A delicious turmeric blend that captures the anti-inflammatory health benefits of turmeric as well as the delicious and complex qualities of ginger and citrus. Perfect for soothing frayed nerves and warming your belly.

CANNED FOODS
In winter when you want to put together a good meal, even a great one, there are a couple of canned staples to have on hand.

  • Canned fish: 
Oil-packed tuna, sardines, and anchovies
 are packed with omega-3s and add protein and depth of flavor to pasta, salads, marinades, and sauteed vegetables.
  • Canned tomatoes: Whether you “put up” your own garden tomatoes or stock up on good quality commercially canned tomatoes, this pantry staple can be the basis of many a good meal.
  • Tomato paste: Try it in a tube, not a can, for better quality and quantity control as most recipes call for just a tablespoon or two.

GRAINS
Grains are an important part of our diet and a vital food source. In the New Year, when many of us resolve to eat more healthily, adding a few whole grains — good for breakfast, lunch, or dinner — will aid in your aspirations.

  • Barley is a versatile, easy-to-cook grain. It is commonly available in two versions: pearl or whole grain. As with most grains, barley often undergoes a milling process that strips the grain of various layers, altering the nutrition content. The softer, more processed of the two styles, pearl barley releases its starch into water as it cooks, which makes it a wonderful ingredient to add to soups and stews to thicken. Boiled in plenty of water, pearl barley can cook in 15-25 minutes. Whole grain or “pot” barley leaves the outer husk intact, resulting in a healthier grain, with a more wholesome flavor and toothsome texture. Cooked, it retains its shape much better than pearl, and can be used as an alternative to wheat grains or spelt. Boiled in plenty of water, pot barley will cook in approximately 40 minutes.
  • Brown rice is one of the most delicious and versatile staples of our pantry. It is sweet, nutty, and can be cooked al dente. To make a large batch, you first rinse the rice in cold water, then simply cook it as you would dried pasta, until it reaches the desired level of tenderness, somewhere between 25-40 minutes. Once cooked and drained in a colander, spread the rice on a large tray, allowing it to cool. Prepared this way, cooked rice will keep in the refrigerator for up to a week, ready to use in a variety of ways for breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
  • Polenta is cornmeal simmered in water or broth to create a thick, porridge-like mixture. A healthful alternative to other side dishes, polenta is incredibly versatile as it can be baked, grilled, fried, or served creamy. To get the most nutritious polenta, consider buying cornmeal that is stone ground. The stone ground process allows more of the nutrients to be retained. At SHED we offer Red Flint stoneground polenta, an exceptionally tasty heirloom variety. Here’s how to make it.

LEGUMES                                                                                                                                                                                                      As winter beckons, we hanker for earthy, comforting, and filling legumes such as peas, lentils, and beans. From vegetarian dal to a Southern classic with a bit of ham hock, here are some legumes that will keep you warm and satisfied.

  • Black-eyed peas: In the Southern United States, eating black-eyed peas or Hoppin’ John (a traditional soul food) on New Year’s Day is thought to bring prosperity in the new year. Here’s how we like to cook it.
  • Lentils: In Indian cuisine, flavorful and comforting dal (lentil stew) is an absolute basic and one of the most complete, nutrient-rich meals around. For more on making dals, here’s a useful guide from Saveur.
  • Split peas: What beats a thick split pea soup, redolent of smoked ham and caramelized onions, on a bleak winter day?
  • White beans: Whether cannellini or great northerns, white bean stews and soups are the ultimate coziness in a bowl, and pair well with winter produce (such as kale, spinach, squash, and wild mushrooms), Italian sausage, and even stale bread (ribolitta).

OILS
We keep a variety of oils, including a good everyday extra virgin olive oil, as well as others in our pantry. Here are a few special oils that complement the foods and flavors of winter.

  • Ghee: In India, clarified butter, called ghee, is essential to everyday cooking; Indians enrich stews and braised dishes with it, spread it on flat breads, and even use it as a healing salve and in religious ceremonies. You can buy jars of ghee, though it’s easy to make at home. Either way, store ghee in the refrigerator and use it as you would butter for omelettes, sautéed onions, and roast chicken. You’ll find your food browns more evenly, and that clarified butter gives off a splendid caramel aroma.
  • Olio Nuovo: A seasonal treat, olio nuovo is an unfiltered “new oil” that goes straight from the mill to the bottle, and is available for just a few months each year — typically from December through February. Its ephemeral charms are best showcased when used as a finishing oil — drizzled over sautéed greens, winter salads, soups, pastas, or polenta.
  • Walnut oil: Rich and fragrant, walnut oil is a good source of omega-3 fatty acids and a delicious treat, perfect for drizzling on bitter salads, creamy risottos, and roasted root vegetables. Like all nut oils, buy it in small quantities and keep refrigerated.

PRESERVES AND PICKLES
Winter is a perfect time to bring out some of your own homegrown and preserved foods from warmer days. If not your own, jams, pickles, and candied fruit from artisan producers all have a place at the winter table. Some of our favorites from the SHED kitchen include Meyer lemon marmelade pomegranate jampickled shiitake mushrooms,

DRIED FRUITS AND NUTS

  • Dried fruits can elevate a simple dish by adding natural sweetness and a pleasant bite when fresh seasonal fruits are scarce. Try apricots, prunes, and cranberries in savory dishes such as wild rice, pilafs, stuffings, stews and tagines. Dates, raisins, candied citrus, and cherries are delicious incorporated into porridge, puddings, breads, and cakes. Membrillo, the Spanish quince paste, or hoshigaki, Japanese dried persimmons, are gorgeous for a cheese course as are dried cherries, figs, and dates.
  • Nuts: Nuts are a versatile ingredient that add flavor and texture to dishes both savory and sweet.
    • Pecans are prevalent in Southern cooking, most popularly in sticky-sweet pecan pies, but pecans are great for dishes besides dessert — you can mix them with roasted vegetables, top a sweet potato gratin, or put some crunch in a green salad. Spiced pecans (we like vadouvan) can be served with ice cream, with fruit desserts, or on a cheese plate.
    • Walnuts turn rancid quickly, so shell them only as you use them. Walnuts are delicious freshly cracked after dinner with cheese, pears, apples, and a glass of port.
    • Hazelnuts (also called filberts) are delicious ground in pastries, tortes, tarts, and ice cream. Add chopped hazelnuts to kale salads, pastas, roasted brussel sprouts with bacon, and wintery pestos. To remove hazelnut skins, roast them, put them in a towel, and then vigorously rub them together. The loosened skin will shake right off.

Because of their naturally high fat content, nuts and seeds can quickly go rancid. For this reason, store them in a dark cool place, or the refrigerator, and buy in small amounts.

SAVORY CONDIMENTS     

  • Dried mushrooms
: The fresh season for wild mushrooms is brief, but dried mushrooms are a convenient way to enjoy them whenever you please! Dried chanterelles are ideal for infusing flavor into soups, stews, stocks, and sauces. A small amount of dried morels rehydrated, sautéed, and incorporated into a sauce brings intense flavor to steaks, chops, or pasta. Rich in flavor, dried porcinis are ready to be added to everything, from endless pasta sauces to broths and risottos.           
  • Truffle salt: Sprinkle a dash of this black truffle-infused sea salt over any dish to add the robust, earthy flavor of black truffles. Great on everything from eggs to roasted vegetables, french fries to steak.  
  • Pine cone bud syrup: Made from pine cone buds macerated in water and sugar, this syrup is cooked over low fire until thick and golden brown. Drizzle over a pork roast or grilled chicken or very ripe cheeses. It is also wonderful on gelato, panna cotta, yogurt and roasted fruit, or as a substitute for maple syrup for a new flavor. You might even like to add a dash to a martini.

SPICES
Here are some spice blends that play well with winter foods such as roasted meats, stews, and soups; and a variety of spices such as cinnamon, turmeric, and cloves, that offer cold- and flu-fighting properties as well as warming flavor.

Recipe: Garam masala
If you make yours this way, starting with whole seeds which you toast and grind yourself, your garam masala will be much more fragrant and flavorful than anything you buy in a jar at the store.

3 Tbsp coriander seeds
2 Tbsp cumin seeds
2 Tbsp cardamom seeds
2 Tbsp black peppercorns
1 tsp whole cloves
1 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1 whole cinnamon stick

Place everything but the nutmeg in a dry skillet and toast for about 10 minutes over medium heat, stirring from time to time to keep everything cooking evenly. When the ingredients have darkened slightly and give off a rich, toasty aroma, remove them from the pan and let them cool.

  • Quatre Spices: A classic French spice blend popular in charcuterie and one-pot slow-cooked stews and casseroles. Allspice, a gorgeous combination of cinnamon, nutmeg, and clove, is key here, with nutmeg, cloves, and ginger.
  • Ras el Hanout: From North Africa, Ras el Hanout is a medley of many spices — paprika, cumin, ginger, ceylon, cinnamon, cassia, turmeric, grains of paradise, allspice, nutmeg, mace, and cayenne. Commonly associated with Moroccan cuisine, the name in Arabic translates to “head of the shop,” and literally refers to the best spices the store has to offer. Complex and aromatic, this spice blend is traditionally used as a seasoning in meat and vegetable tagines and couscous dishes. Here are a few other ideas to inspire your cooking:
    • Sprinkle on roasted carrots or squash sweetened with honey or dates
    • Mix with softened butter or sour cream as a topping for fish
    • Use as spice rub for beef, lamb, and chicken
    • Flavor lentil and chickpea soups and stews
    • Toss with fresh popcorn for a savory snack

Spices’ flavors come from their volatile oils, which dissipate in time as they are exposed to air. All spices should be stored in airtight containers away from extremes of light, heat, and humidity.

Whenever possible, buy small quantities and grind your own whole spices to ensure fresh flavor.

Happy cooking this winter! With a well-stocked pantry, dinner becomes easier and more interesting.

Eat Good Food

Stocking the Fall Pantry: A Cook’s List

fall pantry

Stocking the fall pantry is an undertaking that we anticipate with pleasure as summer’s long hot days gradually fade to fall.

After all, as the seasons change, so does our cooking. With the arrival of fall, the abundance of seasonal produce and cooler temperatures have us dreaming about hearty and warming dishes for the colder days ahead: rich stews, fragrant curries, nourishing soups, and fruit-based desserts.

When stocking the fall pantry, we like to keep these on hand to make all those delicious fall-filled meals.

BAKING INGREDIENTS
For many, fall is the best time of year for baking desserts, especially those using seasonal fruits and nuts.

Sibley squash pie, pear crisps and cobblers, apple tarte tatin, pumpkin nut bread, and pecan pie are among our favorite autumnal desserts. Here are some basic ingredients to have on hand:

  • Flours, especially all-purpose flour, unbleached pastry flour, and whole wheat flour, plus a range of whole grain flours such as rye flour, buckwheat flour, and corn flour to explore using.
  • Sweeteners such as molasses, maple syrup, cane syrup in addition to cane sugars.
  • Rolled oats for fruit crisp toppings and granolas.
  • Cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, allspice, cardamom, cloves, and vanilla bean are the hallmarks of autumn baking, as well as many savory dishes. Make sure yours are fresh (ground spices will lose their potency after a year or two), and store them in cool, dark cupboard in airtight containers.

BEANS
Humble and homey, beans are the perfect dish for fall. If you’ve shied away from cooking dried beans, we encourage you to give them a try. They’re easy, healthy, economical, and far more delicious than canned beans.

Heirloom beans are both richer in color and boast a more pronounced flavor than bland commodity brands. The following are some of our favorites, particularly good for rich stews, soups, pot beans, chilis, and dips.

  • Rio Zape
  • Good Mother Stallard
  • Domingo Rojo
  • Black Turtle

Beans — also known as “pulses,” are a great source of protein, fiber, and vitamins.

They’re also good for the planet: Growing one pound of pulses takes 43 gallons of water, whereas one pound of soy takes 216 gallons and one pound of beef takes over 1,000 gallons.

And, unlike many other plants, pulses are “nitrogen fixers.” This means they are able to draw nitrogen out of the air and put it into the soil in the form of “nitrogen nodules” on their roots. Nitrogen is an essential nutrient for plants, so fixing is vital for soil and crop health.

Here’s a helpful guide from Bon Appetit on how to cook dried beans.

BREAKFAST PORRIDGES

  • Steel cut oats are not the flat flakes of instant and rolled oats — they are the chopped groats themselves, with a nutty flavor and chewy texture. They take a half hour or so to cook, but soaking overnight will reduce the cooking time. Filling and nutritious served for breakfast, steel cut oats are delicious topped with roasted pears, caramelized apples and cinnamon, or simply good butter and maple syrup.
  • Mixed grain porridge is a blend of cracked farro and white Sonora wheat bran that cooks into a nourishing morning porridge with hints of cinnamon and walnuts.

Grains
Fall is the perfect time to enjoy the slower cooking grains. With a bit of advance planning, you can cook them ahead of time to balance any meal or add substance to a soup or salad. They have wonderful health benefits and will satisfy on chilly nights. Here are a few suggestions for fall:

  • Barley can be used as the basis for risotto, to thicken soups, or to make savory grain bowls. Hulled barley, also known as barley groats, is the whole grain form of barley, with only the outermost hull removed. Chewy and rich in fiber, it’s the healthiest kind of barley.
  • Wild rice is not actually rice, but rather an annual aquatic grass that boasts a distinctive nutty flavor and hearty texture. Combined with roasted pumpkin it makes a colorful harvest salad, adds wonderful flavor and texture to soups, and of course makes a delicious dressing for turkey.
  • Dried hominy is maize or corn kernels that have been cooked in an alkaline solution, hulled, then dried. It is used to make pozole, a traditional Mexican soup that is a hearty and comforting dish, perfect as a go-to meal as the weather cools, and an ideal dish for holiday entertaining.

HOMEMADE STOCKS AND BROTHS
In fall especially, when you’re making soups, stews, risottos, and the like, make your own broth or stock whenever possible — the benefits are well worth the time and effort and make all the difference in these kinds of dishes.

Dashi is a flavorful, umami rich broth used in many Japanese dishes such as miso soup, noodle broth, and many kinds of simmering broths used in clay donabes. The basic ingredients for making dashi are shiitake mushrooms, kombu (dried kelp), and bonito flakes.

NUTS AND SEEDS

  • Fall crop walnuts and pecans, for roasting, baking, and serving with cheese.
  • Pepitas (pumpkin seeds) for garnishing soups and salads.

SALTS AND SPICES
Fall elicits the aromas of comforting food. While you get to work preparing some hearty fall food, consider the stronger spices and seasonings reminiscent of this time of year. Here are a few of our favorite fall spice sets and salt blends.

SAVORY INGREDIENTS

  • Miso and tahini can flavor and balance the sweetness of fall vegetables such as winter squash, pumpkins, sweet potatoes, and yams.
  • Canned tomatoes, especially San Marzano or Roma varieties, are good to have on hand for soups, chilis, and pastas.
  • Oliver Farm Pecan Oil is delicious in salad dressings or drizzled over fall greens.
  • Ghee, a clarified butter commonly used in Indian cuisine, has a delicious, nutty flavor and is the secret to making great curry, a wonderful dish to spice things up in the fall. Ghee will last for a very long time without going rancid, although it’s best stored in the refrigerator. Since it doesn’t have the milk solids of butter, you can fry with it at higher temperatures without it smoking.
  • Curry paste can be used to flavor marinades, dressings, or grains.

TEAS
A cup of hot tea is the perfect autumn pick-me-up. We also love herbal teas for soothing bath and bedtime rituals.

  • Barley tea is a roasted-grain-based infusion made from barley. It has a toasty flavor, with slight bitter undertones. Here’s a favorite barley tea blended with fir tips and herbs from Leaves and Flowers.
  • Chai is a flavoured tea beverage made by brewing black tea with a mixture of aromatic Indian spices, and herbs. Our SHED chai mix is spiced with cardamom, clove, ginger, star anise, cinnamon, allspice, white pepper, and allspice and sweetened with Steen’s cane syrup.
  • Turmeric tea is a delicious way to reap the health benefits of turmeric, especially when cold season starts. We enjoy Samovar’s turmeric spice tea, a delicious blend with ginger, lemongrass, and licorice.

VINEGARS

  • Apple cider vinegar, known for its unique health benefits and versatile sweet-sour flavor, is a great mainstay for any cooking application. Slightly sweet from the fermented apple juice, apple cider vinegar makes a great quick pickling liquid, and is a great addition to autumn cider braises, where the vinegar kick helps tone down the sweetness of roasted vegetables.
  • Sherry vinegar (or vinagre de Jerez) is made from sherry that has been aged at least six months in wood barrels and at least 7% acidity, is one of the more acidic vinegars available. Its flavor is nutty and woodsy, and evocative of the sherry from which it was made. It adds hidden depth and a clean brightness to everything it touches. You can add just a few drops to a finished dish, as you would lemon juice, or use it half-and-half with another vinegar (or lemon juice) in a vinaigrette.

Eat Good Food

Stocking the Summer Pantry

summer pantry

Summer is the season of garden fresh vegetables, picnics, impromptu barbecues, and al fresco dinners. Having your summer pantry well-stocked and ready to go makes the season all the easier.

Because, with produce at its peak, summer cooking doesn’t have to be complicated or involve time-consuming preparation. Keeping it simple and easy calls for just the right pantry staples to augment and highlight the best of the season’s offerings. Here are some suggestions you’ll want to reach for.

CONDIMENTS
BBQ sauces are not just for barbecue, and can be used in place of ketchup for fries and burgers, or as a tasty sauce or dip for all kinds of meat and vegetables.

Olives, capers, and anchovies are the trio of ingredients behind the magical flavors of the Mediterranean, and when combined, are the makings of a traditional tapenade, the pungent spread served as an hors d’oeuvre on crostini, or on sandwiches, grilled chicken, and fish. The classic trio can also be combined with fresh herbs to make salsa verdes to spoon over grilled fish, vegetables, and meats; added to potato salads or deviled eggs; or used for quick pasta sauces such as spaghetti alla puttanesca.

Mustard and ketchup are of course two iconic condiments you’ll find at every picnic table. Try new varieties to keep them interesting.

Tahini, the creamy, rich sesame-seed paste essential to Middle Eastern cuisine, gives a nutty appeal to desserts and savory depth to soups, sauces, marinades, and dips. It’s our new favorite spread!


DRIED BEANS
Dried beans are healthy, high-protein choices to have on hand for summer. Cooked and combined with colorful vegetables such as tomatoes, peppers, corn, red onions, and herbs they make delicious vegetarian or vegan salads, perfect for packing up for your picnic.


GRAINS
In the heat of the summer, quick-cooking grains can help you avoid heating up the kitchen. Here are three staples you can prepare by quickly steaming ahead of time:

  • Bulgur is a Middle Eastern staple made from wheat that’s been parboiled, dried, and cracked into nibbly bits. It is traditionally used to make tabblouleh but can be added to soups and salads to boost your weekly whole-grain quotient.
  • Couscous has a rice-like appearance but is actually made of semolina and wheat flour that is steamed. It is a staple in North African cooking where it’s topped with a stew of fruits, vegetables, and meat, but it can also be used in soups and summery salads.
  • Quinoa is a protein- and fiber-rich seed with a nutty flavor and satisfying texture. It is delicious cold in a salad, served warm as a side dish, or combined with vegetables and dairy to make a filling vegetarian main course.    

Tip: To steam bulgur, couscous, or quinoa, bring three cups of water to a boil. Pour in 1 ½ cups of the grain, then cover and remove from the heat. Let the grain steep for 15 minutes until it has absorbed all the water and doubled in size. Fluff with a fork before serving. To store in refrigerator for up to a week, cool and cover grains.


NUTS
Nuts such as pine nuts, walnuts, or pistachios are important ingredients for summer pestos. Whether made with basil, sage, parsley, arugula, or any other herb — our favorite green sauce always incorporates nuts.


PASTA

Pasta salads packed with vegetables fresh from the garden are the perfect side dishes for any picnic or summer barbecue. The pasta you choose should have nooks and crannies to trap the salad dressing, herbs, and other flavorings — try fusilli or farfalle. For an especially thick sauce like pesto, tubed pastas like penne or rigatoni are good choices that have plenty of surface area to soak up the flavor.


PICKLED VEGETABLES
Pickled vegetables are easy side dishes when you put together a picnic or cookout, or serve them as condiments to enhance a charcuterie platter.


SALTS
Finishing salts add a delicious burst of color, flavor, and texture to grilled fish, meats, and vegetables, as well as cocktails and desserts. Some of our summer favorites include these SHED salt blends: Green Salt for roasted potatoes, fish, or chicken; Rosemary and Fennel Pollen Salt for lamb, pork loin, and other roasts; and Red Shiso Salt, perfect for bringing a fresh taste to a salad, melons, sashimi, and grilled fish.


SHRUBS
Shrubs are delicious blends of fruit, sugar, and vinegar created during the Colonial Era to preserve fruit long past harvest. Blended with sparkling water, shrubs quench thirst, cleanse the palate, and refresh the spirit — perfect for summer. They’re also great mixers for cocktails!


OILS
Coconut oil has a higher burning point and longer shelf life than some other fats. As it is solid at room temperature, it can be used to bake, fry, and grease baking pans. It is a fantastic replacement for the butter or vegetable oil called for in recipes. It’s also useful in summer as lip balm, mosquito repellant, skin moisturizer, and conditioner for hair. Stock up!

Extra-virgin olive oil is a year-round staple. But an unrefined, cold-pressed sesame oil with a nutty nuance or a buttery avocado oil is just right for summer marinades, dressings for pasta salads, and light vinaigrettes.

 

VINEGARS
Vinegars are indispensable for summer salads, so keep a variety of both for creative choices. Try a bold red wine vinegar for sautéed greens; subtle rice vinegar to whisk with sesame oil for steamed vegetables; and a splurge-worthy 15- or 20-year-old balsamic vinegar to drizzle over fresh strawberries, grilled figs, or juicy tomatoes.


Ready to stock up and get cooking? Shop Summer Pantry.

Eat Good Food

Stocking the Spring Pantry

spring pantry

Stocking the spring pantry with essentials helps you make the most of the season’s unfolding bounty of fresh fruits and vegetables.

With your pantry well stocked, you’ll be prepared to cook a wide range of dishes, and you’ll save time and money by avoiding unnecessary trips to the store.

Enjoying spring’s beautiful produce means letting the flavors speak for themselves. The following are some of the ingredients that pair well with spring produce to build or enhance dishes.

Anchovies Cured fillets, packed either in olive oil or salt (our preference, as these have a longer shelf life), add an umami depth to salad dressings and pasta sauces. Just one or two mashed-up fillets can be the magic ingredient that enhances flavors.

Black Peppercorns and a good pepper mill.

Chicken or Vegetable Stock Homemade stock for making risottos, light soups and braises, and pasta en brodo.

Condiments
Cornichons 
are an essential ingredient for egg salads, sauce gribiche, and charcuterie; Dijon mustard is traditionally added to vinaigrettes to dress salad greens, poached leeks, or asparagus spears; Capers, packed in brine or salt, are an essential ingredient in salsa verdes, remoulade, and ravigote, and add tang and pungency to chicken, fish, and pasta.

Dried Pasta
A year-round pantry staple, pasta is a great vehicle for spring vegetables as in Pasta Primavera. If you have several types — some long like Linguine and Fettuccine, some shaped like Penne and Orecchiette — you’re halfway to dinner.

Dried Red Pepper Flakes A pinch of red pepper flakes added during the cooking process goes a long way to heighten flavor any season of the year.

Grains
Quinoa (grain salads); Millet (muffins and waffles for crunch protein); Farro (salads and risottos); Arborio rice (risottos); Brown rice (pilafs, rice bowls, salads); Buckwheat flour (sweet and savory crepes).

Lentils A quick-cooking legume that makes a nice warm side dish or a fresh, cool salad. The tiny green French variety LePuy and Black Belugas are favorites. Yellow lentils are common in Indian cooking.

Nuts
Pine nuts, Pistachios, and Almonds, toasted quickly in a skillet, are versatile additions to be used in salads, rice dishes, and pestos.

Oils
Extra Virgin Olive Oil, Sesame Oil, Coconut OilMake sure yours are fresh.

Seasonings
A few seasonings from our SHED Pantry line that add great flavor to some of our favorite springtime dishes include Moroccan spice blends such as Ras el Hanout to enhance lamb and chicken dishes; Tarragon Caper Powder for asparagus salads, poached fish, and devilled eggs; Shiitake Mushroom Powder to add umami to dashi broths for poaching fish, chicken, or vegetables.

Salts
Flaky Maldon Salt, and flavored salts such as Lemon Salt and Green Salt from SHED’s Pantry line.

Vinegars
Stock a few varieties such as Champagne vinegar; Banyuls, a mellow red wine with a complex nutty flavor; White Wine vinegar and Rice Wine vinegar.

Verjus The pressed juice of unripened grapes, verjus can be red (made from either purely red grapes or a red-white mix) or white (made from white grapes). While acidic, verjus has a gentler flavor than vinegar, with a sweet-tart taste that is often used in salad dressings as well as marinades. You can use white verjus as you would use white wine vinegar, lemon juice, or white wine—it is good in beurre blanc, or other sauces for chicken or fish.

Artisan Producers, Chefs, Craftsmanship, Farming, Foodshed, Healdsburg, HomeFarm

Introducing the SHED Pantry Line

We’re excited to announce the launch of the SHED pantry line, featuring a proprietary collection of powders, salt blends, herbs and spices, preserves, pickles, and Shrub concentrates drawn from the best ingredients prepared just as we do in our Healdsburg café.

Coming to fruition under the direction of SHED chef Perry Hoffman, plans for the Pantry Line predate SHED and its café. SHED co-owner Cindy Daniel knew that she wanted to do this before our doors even opened.

“It’s always been a dream of Cindy’s and really, it just makes so much sense,” Perry says. “It really came from the concept of utilizing the pantry that we use to cook from in the café.”

SHED Powders

A distillation of flavor, the SHED powders are a unique finishing touch that pack a punch. Available in one-ounce bottles, they are the essential taste of the vegetables from which they’re made.

Dehydrated in our own kitchens and then pulverized before being mixed with Jacobsen Salt, these powders are intended to be used just before serving to add a strong note to your good fresh food.

“I’ve been using powders for 16 years,” Perry says. “The tradition really comes from fine dining. They’re amazing flavor enhancers. When you dehydrate produce, you concentrated the flavor of that element.”

Perry likes the Charred Eggplant Powder sprinkled atop a bowl of yogurt with fresh chopped mint. He mixes it into vinaigrettes, and hails it as his “love letter” to the baba ganoush dip he adored as a child.

The Tarragon Caper Powder is a nod to traditional French cuisine, adding a note of elegance perfect for using to finish sauces. “Capers and tarragon are two ingredients that are made for each other,” Perry says.

The Niçoise Olive Powder is purposefully not powdered entirely. “We leave this a bit chunkier and just smash them into little crumbles because we love those little bits of dried olives,” Perry says.

The Shiitake Mushroom Powder is a “flavor builder,” Perry says, referring to its role adding umami to any dish. “Add it to a little bit of chicken stock and soy sauce and you’ve got this amazing stock that will add flavor to anything. It’s all about intensifying flavors.”

One in every 100 Padron peppers is hot, so eating them has an element of chance. Dehydrating and then powdering them for our Padron Pepper Powder guarantees that its sweetness will be tempered by a bit of heat. “When you combine them,” Perry says, “you get an incredibly wonderful, earthy powder.”

The Smoked Onion Powder features sweet onions and adds a gorgeous element of onion flavor to everything it touches. “Mix it into sour cream,” Perry suggests, “and you have a dip.”

SHED Salt Blends

SHED’s blends use Jacobsen Salt as a base and add unusual flavors to create finishing salts you’ll always want to reach for.

An incredibly versatile and popular offering, Lemon Salt can be sprinkled liberally atop roasted potatoes and fish. For dessert, try a pinch with vanilla ice cream.

Utilizing an increasingly popular Japanese culinary herb, our Red Shiso Salt is perfect for bringing a fresh taste to a salad before serving or for sprinkling upon fish.

“As a chef, you have the opportunity to cook this way because you have Shiso and you have salt,” Perry explains. “Home cooks don’t necessarily have that option. This is a way of being able to capture those flavors in a jar and be close to the same outcome.”

Made for chicken and perfect for lamb, pork loin, and other roasts, the Rosemary and Wild Fennel Salt is, Perry says simply, “a natural love affair.”

Normally not one to play favorites, Perry confesses that his favorite of the new line is the Black Lime Salt, which has a distinctly Californian take on a traditional Middle Eastern flavor profile. Limes are salted and soaked before being dried and pulverized, bringing an intensity to this salt.

“The wonderful aromatic flavors of lime are very dominant, so this becomes a umami flavor enhancer,” Perry says. He suggests pairing the Black Lime Salt with the Shitake Powder for a umami powerhouse. “If you were to add those two to your broth, it would be very full-bodied.”

SHED Shrubs

A drinking vinegar born from the need to use all of the harvest, the Shrub has recently come back into favor. And thank goodness for that.

Shrubs are the centerpiece of the Fermentation Bar in our Healdsburg store and our flavors always change to match the season. This new collection of essential Shrub flavors is just the start; we’ll be certain to add more as the harvest wanes and new herbs, fruits, and flowers become available.

Available in 12-ounce bottles, SHED Shrub concentrates form the base for a refreshing non-alcoholic drink but can just as easily be made with Prosecco or other lightly bubbly wines.

Whether Quince, Apple, Beet, or Grape — each SHED Shrub concentrate is made from organic ingredients raised by farmers we know or even foraged by Chef Perry himself.

What’s more, his technique for creating this concentrate hasn’t change. For a few hundred years. “We do this just as they would have in the 1800s,” Perry says.

Preserves and Honey

Having fresh jam made with local fruit is a hallmark of the SHED café and our pantry. A devoted home cook, Cindy has always spent part of her summer putting up preserves. Now you can share in some of our good fortune and bounty. Each jar is made of pure organic or even foraged fruit set with cane sugar and a good squeeze of lemon juice. That’s all.

SHED honey is raised in Sonoma County by beekeepers who respect their hives and the hard-working insects inside of them. SHED subscribes to the idea that we don’t keep bees — the bees keep us, as one-third of all the food that we eat is made possible by pollinators.

Pickled Vegetables

Fermentation is a core value at SHED. “We pickle everything. It was so hard to even choose what to put in the jar,” Perry says.

Perry loves eggplant but it doesn’t pickle well, so he made a gorgeous chunky Roasted Eggplant Conserva from it. He encourages us to use it as a chutney. “Yogurt is the most wonderful platform for it,” he enthuses. “It’s such a match made in heaven.”

Packed like the Conserva in 13.5-ounce jars, our Pickled Carrots are flavored with dill leaves, jalapeños, and black peppercorns; the Pickled Turnips with bay leaf, beets, and garlic. Both of them are perfect additions to supper, laid out on a relish plate to contribute bite and interest to a simple meal.

Also jarred up for a pre-dinner pickle plate are our Pickled Shiitake Mushrooms, Roasted Eggplant Conserva, and Turmeric Pickled Turnips.

Herbs & Spices

With this Pantry line-up, SHED is also proud to release its own line of herbs and spices, adding traditional everyday spices like cinnamon to a line-up of offerings that include the Middle Eastern flavors of Harissa, Zahtar, and Vadouvan. We have other unusual mixes like Shichimi Togarashi, Japanese Curry Powder, and Chinese Five Spice. Our own line of Dukka is already a best-selling staple. We even have six kinds of peppercorn!

Just the Start

SHED’s Pantry line is an effort to preserve the peak flavors of the season by pickling, preserving, fermenting, smoking, and drying ingredients to make jams, pickles, shrubs, spice blends, and powders.  It’s an attempt to better tell the story of good farming, good cooking, and good eating.

“We want to take all of the behind-the-scenes things that we make and showcase them,” Perry says.

“There are so many things that we have to make to stock our own pantry. The powders are a perfect example of that.  We want to show what we make, and how we use these products to flavor and enhance our cooking,” he says.

“And how you might share in that.”