Dishes to Get You Through the Winter—in 10 Delicious Ways
Dishes to Get You Through the Winter—in 10 Delicious Ways

Winter, even with its frigid temperatures and punishing winds, brings its own comforts.

Bears may slumber for months, but our rhythm is different. Cooks conjure up food to nourish, drawing from the goodness of the earth—and often, underneath.

Chef Louis DiBiccari of Tavern Road in Boston chanced on white sweet potatoes a couple of years ago. Far more than regular sweet potatoes, they were silky and velvety, with more body.

“It’s a little bit like candy. … It’s that kind of savory dish that isn’t a savory dish,” he said.

“When you think about your childhood, it’s always the sweeter things that stick out,” said Tom Borgia of Russell House Tavern in Cambridge.

Borgia puts his personal stamp on traditional baked beans, with about five ounces of pork belly and a molasses streusel on top.

The season also offers its own rewards, like sweet shrimp from Maine. Chef Jeremy Sewall fries these and serves them with lemon wedges and aïoli.

Try these chefs’ recipes for winter dishes:

1. Crisp Sweet Shrimp
Chef Jeremy Sewall, Row 34, Island Creek Oyster Bar, Lineage (Boston, Mass.)

Crisp Sweet Shrimp. (Courtesy of Rizzoli)
Crisp Sweet Shrimp. (Courtesy of Rizzoli)

There’s at least one good reason to look forward to the dead of winter: Maine sweet shrimp. In his cookbook “The New England Kitchen” (Rizzoli, 2014), chef Jeremy Sewall offers the best way he knows to cook and enjoy them.

 For the recipe, click here

2. Farrotto with Acorn Squash and Red Russian Kale
Chef Sean Brock, Husk (Charleston, S.C., and Nashville, Tenn.)

Farrotto With Acorn Squash and Red Russian Kale. (Excerpted from Heritage by Sean Brock (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Peter Frank Edwards.)
Farrotto With Acorn Squash and Red Russian Kale. (Excerpted from Heritage by Sean Brock (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2014. Photographs by Peter Frank Edwards.)

Think risotto but with farro. This recipe comes from Sean Brock’s book, “Heritage” (Artisan Books, 2014).

For the recipe, click here

3. Maple White Sweet Potato Purée
Chef Louis DiBiccari, Tavern Road (Boston, Mass.)

Maple White Sweet Potato Purée. (Mike Diskin)
Maple White Sweet Potato Purée. (Mike Diskin)

It was a happy accident. Chef Louis DiBiccari received a case of white sweet potatoes a couple of a years ago, but found out they were more velvety and had more body than their orange-fleshed cousins. This dish pairs perfectly with chicken, duck, game birds, pork chops, and lamb shank.

For the recipe, click here

4. Cambridge Baked Beans
Chef Tom Borgia, Russell House Tavern (Cambridge, Mass.)

Cambridge Baked Beans. (Connie Miller)
Cambridge Baked Beans. (Connie Miller)

Chef Tom Borgia’s take on Boston baked beans is served with a few hefty ounces of braised and then fried pork belly. A molasses streusel is the icing on top.

For the recipe, click here

5. Chef Brandon Sharp’s Pommes Boulangère (Baker’s Potatoes)

 

(Courtesy of Solbar at Solage Calistoga)
(Courtesy of Solbar at Solage Calistoga)

Much more than simply baked potatoes, this dish is rounded out with bacon, rapini, and poached eggs.

For the recipe, click here

6. Slow Cooked Chili
Chef Michael Ferraro, Delicatessen (New York)

Slow Cooked Chili. (Courtesy of Delicatessen)
Slow Cooked Chili. (Courtesy of Delicatessen)

When you get unaccountable cravings for chili, try this recipe from chef Michael Ferraro.

For the recipe, click here. 

7. Cassoulet D’Artagnan
Ariane Daguin, CEO and co-founder of D’Artagnan

(Courtesy of D'Artagnan)
(Courtesy of D’Artagnan)

“Cassoulet is the perfect convivial winter dish, for a simple but complete one course meal,” said Ariane Daguin, CEO and co-founder of D’Artagnan. “All the work is done the day before, so if you are the host for the evening, you can sit down and enjoy a nice meal with your friends.”

For the recipe, click here

8. Brussels Sprouts
Chef Danny Elmaleh, Cleo at SLS Las Vegas

 

Brussels Sprouts. (SBE)
Brussels Sprouts. (SBE)

You can’t go wrong with fried Brussels sprouts leaves, accented with toasted almonds and red chili flakes.

For the recipe, click here

9. Grilled Bourbon-Maple-Glazed Butternut Squash with Roasted Cipollini Onions and Mustard Greens
Chef Antonio Prontelli, Rock Center Café (New York)

Grilled Bourbon-Maple-Glazed Butternut Squash with Roasted Cipollini Onions and Mustard Greens. (Courtesy of Rock Center Café)
Grilled Bourbon-Maple-Glazed Butternut Squash with Roasted Cipollini Onions and Mustard Greens. (Courtesy of Rock Center Café)

In this recipe from chef Antonio Prontelli, butternut squash meets bourbon and maple syrup.

For the recipe, click here

10. Octopus Stifado ‘Ravioli’
Collaborating Chef Diane Kochilas, Molyvos

Octopus Stifado "Ravioli.(Paul Johnson)
Octopus Stifado “Ravioli.(Paul Johnson)

Diane Kochilas, the collaborating chef at Molyvos in Manhattan, said, “This dish was born a little by accident, a happy kind of accident. It derives from a classic pan-Greek (that is, not specific to any one region) dish called Ktapodaki Me Kofto Makaronaki (the octopus and short pasta—like ditalini). That dish is one of the classic Greek comfort foods, something kids here in Greece love.”

For the recipe, click here

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