web analytics

Blog

BBQ Pulled Chicken for Instant Pot or Slow Cooker

This easy, flavorful four-ingredient pulled chicken is great for those busy weeknights during the back-to-school season. Make it low and slow in the slow cooker or fast and furious in the Instant Pot, whichever suits your schedule. Serve on brioche buns with coleslaw and pickles or over a simple salad for a family-friendly meal.

Thanks to North Coast for sponsoring this post, and thanks to you for supporting our partners.

Tip

BBQ pulled chicken in the Instant Pot or slow cooker also makes great meal prep food. Try layering it with cooked corn, black beans, and baby spinach for a week of not-sad desk lunches.

Easy weeknight dinners

It’s never too early to get your ducks in a row for the back-to-school rush. I’m a big fan of the following plan: wring every last ounce of summer out of summer. Be at the beach. Travel to one place you haven’t been before and to one of your favorite places. Spend enough silly time with the kids that you’re so very ready to see them go.

But also. Nab those school supplies. Sign the kids up for a few extracurriculars. Set your sights on a couple of smart snack ideas. Pin a bunch of good-looking, quick and easy recipes to a Pinterest board. Set it and forget it.

BBQ Pulled Chicken Instant Pot Slow Cooker 780 | Umami Girl-2

Instant Pot or slow cooker BBQ pulled chicken

Here’s a wholesome, flavorful four-ingredient recipe that couldn’t be better suited to autumn weeknights. You can choose whether to make it low and slow in the slow cooker or fast and furious in the instant pot. You can choose whether to tuck it into a brioche bun with coleslaw and pickles or layer it on top of a simple salad. Either way, it’s a crowd pleaser.

And this crowd pleaser is brought to you by North Coast applesauce.

North Coast applesauce

North Coast’s 100% Organic certified, non-GMO Project verified products have been favorites on the west coast and in the midwest for years, and now they’ll be more widely available thanks to boxed.com and jet.com. North Coast starts with USA-grown fruit of exceptional flavor and quality and produces juices, ciders, cider vinegars and a wide variety of applesauce flavors that are BPA-free, fresh pressed, Kosher and added sugar- and preservative-free. They even manage to do it all with about 50% solar energy.

We love North Coast’s delicious applesauce cups on their own as a quick, healthy snack or breakfast, and we had a hunch they’d also make a great addition to BBQ pulled chicken. Guess what? They really do. They add just the right amount of natural sweetness to this meal while sneaking a little extra fruit into the family to fuel everyone’s new and exciting adventures.

It couldn’t be better, and it couldn’t be easier.

BBQ Pulled Chicken for Instant Pot or Slow Cooker

This easy, flavorful four-ingredient pulled chicken is great for those busy weeknights during the back-to-school season. Make it low and slow in the slow cooker or fast and furious in the Instant Pot, whichever suits your schedule. Serve on brioche buns with coleslaw and pickles or over a simple salad for a family-friendly meal.
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Additional Time 10 minutes
Total Time 30 minutes
Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup North Coast applesauce
  • 1 1/2 cups of your favorite homemade or purchased barbecue sauce (see note)
  • 2 tablespoons North Coast apple cider vinegar
  • 2 pounds boneless skinless chicken breasts

Directions

In the Instant Pot or slow cooker, stir together the applesauce, barbecue sauce and apple cider vinegar. Nestle chicken breasts into sauce.

Instant pot instructions: Close lid and make sure valve is set to “sealing.” Cook on the manual setting, high pressure, for 15 minutes. When cooking time ends, let the pressure release naturally for 10 minutes, then release any remaining pressure by opening the valve.

Slow cooker instructions: Cover and cook on high for 3 to 4 hours or on low for 6 to 7 hours.

Chicken is done when cooked through (165° F) and easy to shred.

Remove chicken to a cutting board and, while hot, shred using two forks. If using an Instant Pot, press the sauté button and let sauce simmer to thicken slightly while you shred the chicken.

Return shredded chicken to pot and stir to coat with sauce.

Notes

As long as your barbecue sauce is pourable, it will work well in the Instant Pot. If it’s extraordinarily thick, thin it with water to a pourable consistency before proceeding.

Nutrition Information

Amount Per Serving:

Calories:: 422 Total Fat:: 7.4g Carbohydrates:: 33.8g Fiber:: 0.8g Protein:: 51.5g

    Beet, Goat Cheese and Mint

    Prep Time 40 minutes
    Cook Time 15 minutes
    Total Time 55 minutes
    Serves Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

    Ingredients

    • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
    • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
    • Freshly ground black pepper
    • 2 pounds cucumbers (about 4 medium)
    • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

    Directions

    Place the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

    Slice the cucumbers into thin 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Place them in the bowl, add the chives, and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.

    Preheat the oven to 450°F.

    1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.

    2. Spread a rimmed (18×13-inch) half sheet pan with the tablespoon of olive oil.

    3. Dunk the salmon in the miso glaze and arrange along one edge of the baking sheet.

    4. Next, toss the asparagus in the glaze and arrange in one even layer in another corner of the baking sheet.

    5. Finally, toss the bok choy with the remaining glaze and arrange in a pile in the open space on the baking sheet (don’t worry about piling it up a little—it will help them steam and cook through).

    6. Roast in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the fish is firm to the touch (if you’d like a little more color on the salmon, broil it for 2 minutes at this point).

    7. Remove from the oven, garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds, and serve.

    Notes

    test

    Creamy Asparagus Soup Recipe with Ramps (or Garlic)

    This creamy asparagus soup recipe with ramps (or garlic) is great as a first course on its own, or as a more substantial lunch or dinner with the addition of some hefty garnishes.

    Tip

    Ramps are a wonderful seasonal ingredient that dovetail with peak asparagus, but if you can't find them, garlic makes a terrific substitution.

    I’m such a lifelong fan of this method of making asparagus that it took me a while to really care about cooking it other ways. Of course there’s the wonderful blender hollandaise approach, the occasional pizza, and even a rhyming rustic tart. Asparagus spears are so pretty that I hadn’t really gotten around to blitzing them in a blender until more recently. But man, right now we can’t get enough of this silky, springy, creamy asparagus soup. 

    Ramp season is pretty much over now, but I had a few stragglers in the freezer, just enough to add a layer of depth to a creamy bowl of soup. If you don’t have ramps — which I realize is highly likely for most of the people most of the year — garlic is a 100% approved substitution.

    Blending Tips for Creamy Asparagus Soup

    To make this soup really silky and thick without any straining or thickeners, I blitzed it up in our Vitamix high-speed blender. It’s one of my favorite and most frequently used kitchen tools. If you have a high-speed blender, this is the place to use it. If not, you can definitely use a regular blender or an immersion blender. Just double-check whether the soup is perfectly smooth after blending, and if not, consider passing it through a fine-mesh strainer before serving. (Though let’s be honest — a little rustic aspect to a delicious soup doesn’t bother me if it doesn’t bother you.)

    Creamy Asparagus Soup Recipe with Ramps

    This quick and easy creamy asparagus soup recipe with ramps makes a great first course or, jazzed up with some substantial garnishes, a satisfying lunch or dinner on its own. If you don't have ramps, it's totally cool to just chop up 10 cloves of garlic and add them to the pot with the onion instead.
    Prep Time 10 minutes
    Cook Time 20 minutes
    Total Time 30 minutes
    Serves 4

    Ingredients

    For the soup

    • 2 tablespoons good, salted butter
    • 10 ramps or 10 garlic cloves
    • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
    • 2 pounds fresh asparagus
    • 4 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
    • 1 teaspoon fine sea salt
    • 1/2 cup heavy cream
    • 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    • A few good grinds black pepper

    To garnish

    • 1 tablespoon safflower oil (or other high-heat cooking oil)
    • 1 package halloumi cheese (about 8 ounces)
    • 12 grape or cherry tomatoes
    • Microgreens

    Directions

    To make the soup

    1. Melt the butter in a medium pot over medium heat.
    2. Trim roots from ramps and discard. Cut ramps to separate green leaves from stems.
    3. Add ramp stems and diced onion to pot and cook, stirring occasionally, until onion begins to soften, just a few minutes. (Alternatively, roughly chop garlic and add to pot with onion.) 
    4. Trim woody ends from asparagus and discard, then chop asparagus into 1-inch pieces.
    5. Add asparagus to pot along with ramp leaves, broth, and salt. Bring to a boil over high heat, then cover and reduce heat to maintain a gentle simmer until asparagus is tender, 5 to 10 minutes.
    6. Off the heat, stir in cream, lemon juice, and pepper.
    7. Use an immersion blender or transfer soup to a blender (in batches if necessary) and process until perfectly smooth.

    To garnish (optional)

    1. The soup is great by itself, but this substantial garnish makes it extra pretty and turns it into a more filling meal. Warm the safflower oil in a 10-inch nonstick pan over medium-high heat.
    2. Dice the halloumi, add to pan and cook until browned on a few sides, about 5 minutes.
    3. Slice tomatoes in half lengthwise.
    4. Pour soup into serving bowls and top with a few pieces of halloumi, some tomatoes and a small handful of microgreens.

    Notes

    Nutrition information for this recipe is calculated for soup without garnishes.

    Nutrition Information

    Amount Per Serving:

    Calories:: 251 Total Fat:: 19.2g Carbohydrates:: 17.3g Fiber:: 5.3g Protein:: 6.6g

      Beet, Goat Cheese and Mint

      Prep Time 40 minutes
      Cook Time 15 minutes
      Total Time 55 minutes
      Serves Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

      Ingredients

      • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
      • 2 tablespoons olive oil
      • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
      • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
      • Freshly ground black pepper
      • 2 pounds cucumbers (about 4 medium)
      • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

      Directions

      Place the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

      Slice the cucumbers into thin 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Place them in the bowl, add the chives, and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.

      Preheat the oven to 450°F.

      1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.

      2. Spread a rimmed (18×13-inch) half sheet pan with the tablespoon of olive oil.

      3. Dunk the salmon in the miso glaze and arrange along one edge of the baking sheet.

      4. Next, toss the asparagus in the glaze and arrange in one even layer in another corner of the baking sheet.

      5. Finally, toss the bok choy with the remaining glaze and arrange in a pile in the open space on the baking sheet (don’t worry about piling it up a little—it will help them steam and cook through).

      6. Roast in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the fish is firm to the touch (if you’d like a little more color on the salmon, broil it for 2 minutes at this point).

      7. Remove from the oven, garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds, and serve.

      Notes

      test

      Grilled Chicken Sandwiches with Halloumi

      These grilled chicken sandwiches with halloumi, red bell peppers, arugula, and a really tasty, herby sauce are bursting with Greek-inspired flavors.

      Tip

      You can marinate the chicken well in advance, even the day before if you like. After that, everything about these grilled chicken sandwiches comes together in a matter of minutes.

      A better grilled chicken sandwich

      Grilling should be nice and easy, don’t you think? Usually that’s because grilling is for relaxed, beautiful summer days — though recently in New Jersey we’ve been needing easy grilling recipes because it’s hard to dodge wind gusts and lightning bolts and hold an umbrella and grill something complicated all at the same time. Regardless of your motive, it’s great to be able to keep it simple while also keeping it interesting and delicious and not just all about the burgers and dogs. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that.) These grilled chicken sandwiches with halloumi cheese, red bell peppers, arugula, and a really tasty, herby sauce couldn’t be more accessible, but they’re also kinda special in a low-key way. Anything with a marinade AND a sauce has my heart, even if it makes the ingredient list look suspiciously long.You can marinate the chicken well in advance, even the day before if you like. After that, everything about these grilled chicken sandwiches comes together in a matter of minutes.

      What is Halloumi Cheese?

      You guys. Halloumi is a dream come true, that’s what it is — and there’s nothing quite like it. Halloumi cheese originates in Cyprus. It’s made from a combination of sheep’s milk and goat’s or sometimes cow’s milk. When grilled or sautéed, it gets crisp on the outside and tender and dreamy on the inside. The taste is briny and herb-flecked and satisfying. You can get it here, if not in your local market, and I’d really recommend doing so. But if worse comes to worst, feta would make a tasty substitute. Just don’t grill it.

      Vegetarian Option

      Thanks to our friends at NXT CHPTR, who reminded us how convenient halloumi can be for vegetarians in the summertime. (Traditionally prepared halloumi is a rennet-free, vegetarian cheese.) That tip got us thinking about a great vegetarian alternative to the chicken in this sandwich: portobello caps. Simply substitute one portobello cap per sandwich for the chicken breasts. For each cap, remove the stem and scrape out the gills with a teaspoon, then proceed with the recipe exactly as directed. No further changes needed! If you’re serving some meat-eaters and some vegetarians, just separate the marinade into two bags.

      Grilled Chicken Sandwiches with Halloumi

      These grilled chicken sandwiches with halloumi are bursting with Greek-Inspired flavors. You can grill everything or cook indoors in a hot cast iron pan or grill pan. Don't be deterred by the longish ingredient list — there's nothing complicated about putting this meal together. If you can't get your hands on halloumi, feta would make a good substitute, but don't grill it. Just lay a slice onto each sandwich when assembling.
      Prep Time 15 minutes
      Cook Time 15 minutes
      Additional Time 2 hours
      Total Time 2 hours 30 minutes
      Serves Serves 4

      Ingredients

      For the marinade

      • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
      • Juice of 1 lemon (about 3 tablespoons)
      • 6 garlic cloves, minced
      • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
      • 1/2 teaspoon dried dill weed
      • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
      • A few good grinds black pepper

      For the sandwiches

      • 2 large boneless, skinless chicken breast halves, about 1 1/2 pounds total
      • 2 medium red bell peppers
      • 1 package halloumi cheese (about 8 ounces)
      • 4 brioche hamburger buns
      • 4 small handfuls baby arugula leaves

      For the sauce

      • 1/2 cup sour cream
      • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
      • 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
      • 1 small shallot, minced
      • 2 tablespoons minced flat-leaf parsley
      • 1 tablespoon minced fresh dill
      • 1 tablespoon minced fresh tarragon leaves
      • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
      • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste

      Directions

      1. In a small bowl, whisk together the marinade ingredients: olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, salt, dill, oregano and pepper.
      2. Cut each chicken breast in half across the middle and pound with a mallet if necessary to make each piece about an inch thick and a little bigger than a hamburger bun. Place chicken pieces into a gallon-size zip-top bag. Pour marinade into zip-top bag and seal bag. Work the marinade into the chicken a little bit with your hands, then place bag on a plate and refrigerate for at least two hours.
      3. Cut bell peppers in half from stem end to tip and remove stems, ribs and seeds. Cut a slit of about an inch at both the top and bottom of each pepper half to help it relax into a flatter shape as it grills. Cut halloumi into four slices, not super-thin or they might get too floppy on the grill. 
      4. Prepare grill for direct heat (or preheat gas grill to medium-high). Arrange chicken on grill with some marinade still clinging to it. Dredge pepper pieces through marinade and place on grill. Grill for 5 minutes on the first side, then flip everything and grill chicken about 3 to 4 minutes more, until just cooked through. Set chicken on a plate. If peppers are soft enough for your liking, remove them too, otherwise leave them on while you grill the halloumi.
      5. Dredge halloumi through marinade and place on grill. Cook 2 to 3 minutes on first side, until chewy and lightly grill-marked. Flip and cook one minute more.
      6. In a small bowl, stir together the sauce ingredients: sour cream, olive oil, lemon juice, shallot, parsley, dill, tarragon, salt, and pepper.
      7. Assemble each sandwich by layering chicken, pepper, halloumi and arugula onto each bottom bun and spreading some sauce onto each top bun.

      Nutrition Information

      Amount Per Serving:

      Calories:: 580 Total Fat:: 24g Carbohydrates:: 35.4g Fiber:: 3.7g Protein:: 48.2g

        Beet, Goat Cheese and Mint

        Prep Time 40 minutes
        Cook Time 15 minutes
        Total Time 55 minutes
        Serves Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

        Ingredients

        • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
        • 2 tablespoons olive oil
        • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
        • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
        • Freshly ground black pepper
        • 2 pounds cucumbers (about 4 medium)
        • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

        Directions

        Place the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

        Slice the cucumbers into thin 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Place them in the bowl, add the chives, and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.

        Preheat the oven to 450°F.

        1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.

        2. Spread a rimmed (18×13-inch) half sheet pan with the tablespoon of olive oil.

        3. Dunk the salmon in the miso glaze and arrange along one edge of the baking sheet.

        4. Next, toss the asparagus in the glaze and arrange in one even layer in another corner of the baking sheet.

        5. Finally, toss the bok choy with the remaining glaze and arrange in a pile in the open space on the baking sheet (don’t worry about piling it up a little—it will help them steam and cook through).

        6. Roast in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the fish is firm to the touch (if you’d like a little more color on the salmon, broil it for 2 minutes at this point).

        7. Remove from the oven, garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds, and serve.

        Notes

        test

        Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp Recipe

        Is there anything better than strawberry and rhubarb together? This easy strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe gently amplifies that ideal flavor combination without getting in its way. It fits perfectly into a deep-dish pie plate. I've used an older version of this one for years.

        Don't neglect to bake this on a rimmed cookie sheet — it will bubble up and over a little bit toward the end of baking.

        Tip

        Psst…maybe check out our other crisps and crumbles, too. We've got you covered for every season.

        Doesn't it look great?

        Happy Friday, happy June, and a very happy rhubarb season to you. Is there anything better than the flavor combination of strawberries and rhubarb? Nothing I’d put in a recipe post, anyway.

        We woke up in Princeton this morning for our 20th — 20th! — college reunion, which will occupy every moment and corner of memory and ounce of social energy from now until Sunday.

        But earlier in the week I was smart enough to dig up this strawberry rhubarb crisp recipe from very early on in the Umami Girl archives and make it for dessert plus breakfasts. It’s pretty much this recipe’s 10th college reunion right now. Doesn’t it look great?

        (Psst…maybe check out our other crisps and crumbles, too.)

        The best strawberry rhubarb recipe

        To my mind, the best strawberry rhubarb recipe adds just enough sweetness to balance rhubarb’s extreme briskness without drowning out its complexity. It adds a little bit of crunch, but not too much. And otherwise it just leaves well enough alone. Why mess with success?

        This recipe comes together quickly and then just has to bake bake bake for a while. It’s easy, but anyway, here are a few tips that you can apply equally to any crisp you make this summer.

        Protips for Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp (or really any fruit crisp)

        Use a deep dish pie plate with a rimmed baking sheet underneath to catch drips. The shape of a deep pie plate will give you a nice ratio of filling to topping.

        Measurements don’t have to be super-precise for this kind of baking, but for strawberry and rhubarb an approximate 1 to 1 ratio results in a great, larger than life flavor. The amount of sugar in this recipe is calibrated for that ratio. If you use more rhubarb, you’ll need more sugar.

        Depending on your oven, you’ll probably find that the topping is perfectly browned by about halfway through baking. Drape a piece of foil over the pie plate at this point to prevent further browning. You don’t even need to tuck it in.

        Serve with vanilla ice cream for dessert or with Greek yogurt as an excuse to eat dessert for breakfast.

        Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

        Is there anything better than strawberry and rhubarb together? This easy recipe gently amplifies that ideal flavor combination without getting in its way. It fits perfectly into a deep-dish pie plate. Don't neglect to bake this on a rimmed cookie sheet — it will bubble up and over a little bit toward the end of baking.
        Prep Time 15 minutes
        Cook Time 45 minutes
        Total Time 1 hour
        Serves 8

        Ingredients

        For the filling

        • 1 1/4 pounds rhubarb (about 4 large stalks)
        • 1 1/4 pounds strawberries
        • 1/2 cup sugar
        • 1/4 cup cornstarch
        • 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice

        For the topping

        • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
        • 3/4 cup old fashioned rolled oats
        • 2/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
        • 8 tablespoons cold butter, diced
        • Pinch of salt

        Directions

        1. Preheat the oven to 375°F with a rack in the center.
        2. Make the filling: Trim the rhubarb stalks and cut them crosswise into ½-inch pieces. Place in a large mixing bowl. Trim the strawberries and cut them in half or in quarters if large. (The pieces of fruit should all be roughly the same size for even cooking.) Add the strawberries to the bowl. Add the ½ cup sugar, the cornstarch and the lemon juice to the bowl and mix thoroughly.
        3. Pour the fruit mixture into the pie plate.
        4. Make the topping: Combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, butter and salt in a medium bowl. Blend the mixture together using your fingers and thumbs until there is no loose flour at the bottom of the bowl and much of the mixture is in pea-sized pieces.
        5. Distribute the topping over the fruit. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any drips for about 45 minutes, until browned on top, bubbly and completely cooked through. Start checking after about 20 minutes to see whether the topping looks browned enough. When it does, place a sheet of foil loosely overtop for the remainder of baking. You don't even need to tuck it in.
        6. Cool for at least 10 minutes before serving with vanilla ice cream for dessert, or with Greek yogurt for breakfast.

        Notes

        We've used an older version of this deep dish pie plate for years. 

        To make this recipe gluten-free, use certified gluten-free oats and a gluten-free flour blend such as this one.

        Nutrition Information

        Amount Per Serving:

        Calories:: 320 Total Fat:: 12g Carbohydrates:: 50.7g Fiber:: 3.8g Protein:: 3.4g

          Beet, Goat Cheese and Mint

          Prep Time 40 minutes
          Cook Time 15 minutes
          Total Time 55 minutes
          Serves Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

          Ingredients

          • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
          • 2 tablespoons olive oil
          • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
          • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
          • Freshly ground black pepper
          • 2 pounds cucumbers (about 4 medium)
          • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

          Directions

          Place the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

          Slice the cucumbers into thin 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Place them in the bowl, add the chives, and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.

          Preheat the oven to 450°F.

          1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.

          2. Spread a rimmed (18×13-inch) half sheet pan with the tablespoon of olive oil.

          3. Dunk the salmon in the miso glaze and arrange along one edge of the baking sheet.

          4. Next, toss the asparagus in the glaze and arrange in one even layer in another corner of the baking sheet.

          5. Finally, toss the bok choy with the remaining glaze and arrange in a pile in the open space on the baking sheet (don’t worry about piling it up a little—it will help them steam and cook through).

          6. Roast in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the fish is firm to the touch (if you’d like a little more color on the salmon, broil it for 2 minutes at this point).

          7. Remove from the oven, garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds, and serve.

          Notes

          test

          The Aficionado Cocktail

          This post is sponsored by Cinzano. Thank you for supporting our partners.

          Tip

          Gin and vermouth both have beautifully herbal, slightly astringent qualities, making them a perfect match for the thyme and lemon in this cocktail.

          Vermouth: my spirit spirit (technically my spirit fortified wine)

          I went to college in the land of F. Scott Fitzgerald, and my drinking sensibility starts there. A dirty martini with three big olives has always been one of my top three classic cocktails, and so a good dry vermouth has been in my life for as long as it's been legally allowed. Cinzano has been making its Italian vermouth since 1757, and I'm 41 now, so let's just say we've been friends for kind of a long time. And let's just say that when I had the opportunity to create a new cocktail as part of Cinzano's upcoming Respect the Drink project, I felt like I'd been training for this opportunity for half my life.Cinzano has so many cool parts to its 250+ year story, but one of my favorites is their history of using great artwork in their campaigns. Back at the end of the 19th century, in the early days of advertising, only Italy's best brands could afford to work with artists and illustrators. Cinzano was one of them, and they produced some pretty spectacular imagery beginning in the Belle Époque and evolving alongside pop culture from then on.

          What is Vermouth?

          Good question. Vermouth is a fortified and aromatized wine. Fortified means that a neutral, distilled grape spirit has been added to the wine to increase its alcohol content. Aromatized means the recipe includes herbs and spices. And you know what wine means. 🙂Vermouth comes in several varieties, including:Rosso/Sweet/Vermouth di Torino: A sweet vermouth that gets its amber color from a rich infusion of herbs and spices and is iconic in Manhattans, Negronis, and moreDry/Extra Dry: A delicately flavored, nearly clear vermouth found in dry cocktails like MartinisBianco: A sweet white vermouth with a bigger flavor that's common to drink either alone as an apéritif or in cocktails

          What's an Aficionado?

          Another good question, my friend. An aficionado is someone very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about an activity, subject, or pastime. The dictionary stops there, but I think of an aficionado as quite enjoying being an aficionado, too. That's kind of a fun combination of ways of being — and one that seems right at home in the worlds of both classic and modern cocktails — so I went right ahead and named a drink after it. The Aficionado is great at any time of year, right now being no exception. So says one in the know.

          The Aficionado Cocktail

          This simple but sophisticated gin and vermouth cocktail is great any time of year.
          Prep Time 5 minutes
          Cook Time 5 minutes
          Total Time 10 minutes
          Serves Makes 1 cocktail

          Ingredients

          • 1 large, juicy lemon
          • 1 sprig fresh thyme
          • 1 tablespoon mild honey
          • 2 ounces good gin
          • 1 ounce Cinzano Extra Dry Vermouth

          Directions

          1. Heat a cast iron skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes until very hot. Cut the lemon in half and then cut a 1/4-inch-thick round slice from one half. Place the lemon halves and the slice into the pan cut sides down and cook for about three to four minutes, until nicely charred. Remove lemon from pan and add thyme sprig. Cook for about a minute, until fragrant, then set aside to cool.
          2. Squeeze juice from lemon halves through a fine-mesh sieve into a small bowl. Measure out 1 1/2 ounces juice, reserving any extra for another use. Stir honey into lemon juice until dissolved.
          3. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Pour in lemon juice mixture, gin and Vermouth and shake well. Place a few ice cubes into a single old fashioned glass and pour drink into glass. Garnish with lemon slice and thyme sprig. (Bruise the thyme with your fingers a bit so its flavors will infuse into the drink.)

          Nutrition Information

          Amount Per Serving:

          Calories:: 230

            Beet, Goat Cheese and Mint

            Prep Time 40 minutes
            Cook Time 15 minutes
            Total Time 55 minutes
            Serves Serves 4 to 6 as a side dish

            Ingredients

            • 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar
            • 2 tablespoons olive oil
            • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
            • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more as needed
            • Freshly ground black pepper
            • 2 pounds cucumbers (about 4 medium)
            • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh chives

            Directions

            Place the vinegar, oil, sugar, salt, and a few grinds of pepper in a large bowl and whisk to combine.

            Slice the cucumbers into thin 1/8-inch-thick rounds. Place them in the bowl, add the chives, and toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes or overnight to allow the flavors to meld. Taste and season with salt and pepper as needed before serving.

            Preheat the oven to 450°F.

            1. Whisk together the first 6 ingredients in a large bowl.

            2. Spread a rimmed (18×13-inch) half sheet pan with the tablespoon of olive oil.

            3. Dunk the salmon in the miso glaze and arrange along one edge of the baking sheet.

            4. Next, toss the asparagus in the glaze and arrange in one even layer in another corner of the baking sheet.

            5. Finally, toss the bok choy with the remaining glaze and arrange in a pile in the open space on the baking sheet (don’t worry about piling it up a little—it will help them steam and cook through).

            6. Roast in the oven for 12 to 15 minutes, or until the fish is firm to the touch (if you’d like a little more color on the salmon, broil it for 2 minutes at this point).

            7. Remove from the oven, garnish with sliced scallions and sesame seeds, and serve.

            Notes

            test