When I Write of Hunger

“Like most humans, I am hungry...our three basic needs, for food and security and love, are so mixed and mingled and entwined that we cannot straightly think of one without the others. So it happens that when I write of hunger, I am really writing about love and the hunger for it...”
― M.F.K. Fisher, The Gastronomical Me

Late Summer Appetizers


Fall is fast approaching, but the produce at our farmers’ markets is by-and-large still the stuff of summer. Hang on to the fleeting season and put late-summer ingredients to use in vibrant appetizers and small plates that complement family dinners and weekend parties alike. 

See all 41 recipes for late-summer appetizers » 


Spanish-Style Toast with Tomato (Pan Con Tomate)

This quick, savory snack requires just 5 ingredients.


1 6” piece of baguette, halved lengthwise
1 clove garlic
2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
1 very ripe large tomato
Coarse sea salt, to taste

1. Heat oven to 500˚. Put bread on a baking sheet and toast until golden brown, about 8 minutes. Rub garlic over cut surface of bread and drizzle with oil.

2. Put a box grater into a large bowl and grate tomato over largest holes, discarding skin. Spoon grated tomato onto toast and sprinkle with sea salt.

See More: 21 Great Birthday Cakes »


Bacon Caprese Salad

A vinaigrette made with roasted garlic and bacon adds salty, savory flavor to a classic Caprese salad.


¾ lb. bacon, diced and crisped, fat reserved
½ cup chopped celery
½ cup honey
½ cup rice vinegar
½ cup sliced shallots
¼ cup roasted garlic
1¼ tbsp. lemon juice
½ tbsp. dijon mustard
¼ cup canola oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 lb. fresh mozzarella, halved crosswise and thinly sliced
4 heirloom tomatoes, cut into wedges
1 tbsp. fresh marjoram leaves

1. Make the vinaigrette: In a large food processor, process ½ lb. bacon, celery, honey, vinegar, shallots, garlic, lemon juice, and mustard until smooth. With the processor running, slowly add oil and the reserved bacon fat; season with salt and pepper.

2. Make the salad: Combine mozzarella, tomatoes, and marjoram; season with salt and pepper and drizzle with vinaigrette. Garnish with remaining bacon.

See More: 5 Menus to Cook Before Summer Ends »


Almond-Flour Crab Cakes with Lemon Aioli

An almond meal crust gives these coincidentally gluten-free crab cakes structure, while keeping them moister and more tender than a traditional crab cake. 


2 egg yolks
2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, crushed
½ tsp. lemon zest
2 tsp. lemon juice
⅔ to 1 cup grapeseed oil
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

⅓ cup mayonnaise
2 tbsp. Dijon mustard
1 egg
1 egg yolk
2 tsp. lemon zest
2 tsp. lemon juice
2⅔ cups ground almond meal, divided
4 scallions, finely chopped
1 tbsp. chopped dill
1 tbsp. chopped tarragon
1 tbsp. chopped cilantro
1 lb. lump crabmeat, picked over
½ tsp. salt
¼ tsp. freshly ground white pepper
⅓ cup yellow cornmeal
½ to ¾ cups canola or grapeseed oil for frying

1. Make the aioli: Combine egg yolks, mustard, garlic, and lemon zest and juice in a blender and puree until smooth. With blender running on its lowest setting, remove the lid plug and slowly drizzle in grapeseed oil, a few drops at at a time, until mixture begins to thicken. Gradually increase the oil to a thin, steady stream, until a uniform creamy consistency is reached. If mixture begins to thread and break apart, stop adding oil and drizzle in lukewarm water a few drops at a time, until consistency once again becomes uniform and creamy. Season aioli with salt and pepper to taste, and set aside.

2. Make the crab cakes: Whisk together mayonnaise, mustard, egg, yolk, and lemon zest and juice in a large bowl. Mix in 2 cups of almond meal, scallions, and herbs until thoroughly combined. Gently fold in crab, taking care to keep large lumps intact. Season mixture with salt and white pepper, cover with plastic wrap and chill for 30 minutes.

3. Mix remaining 2/3 cup almond meal and cornmeal in a pie plate, season lightly with salt and pepper. Divide crab mixture into 12 equal portions and form into 2-inch patties. Coat in almond-cornmeal mixture, pressing coating up sides until cakes are completely covered.

4. Heat 4 tablespoons canola or grapeseed oil in a 12-inch skillet over medium-high heat until the oil is hot but no smoking, about 2-3 minutes. In batches, cook the crab cakes for 4-5 minutes per side until deep golden brown and crisp, wiping out the skillet and adding fresh oil between batches. Transfer cooked crab cakes to a paper-towel-lined tray and serve while warm.

See More: 14 Dishes That Are Better With an Egg On Top »


Okra Pickles

These spicy pickles are a delicious accompaniment to any meal. Jar a batch now and serve them at Thanksgiving as a bright counterpart to all that stuffing and mashed potatoes.


1 lb. okra
4 cloves garlic
3 sprigs fresh dill
1 habanero or Scotch bonnet chile, stemmed and halved
2 cups white wine vinegar
2 tbsp. kosher salt
1½ tbsp. mustard seeds
½ tbsp. fennel seeds
8 whole black peppercorns

Combine okra, garlic, dill, and chile in a sterilized 2-qt. glass jar; set aside. Bring vinegar, salt, both seeds, peppercorns, and 1¾ cups water to a boil in a 4-qt. saucepan over high heat, stirring to dissolve salt. Pour into jar, seal, and let cool to room temperature; refrigerate for up to 1 month.

See More: August’s Most Popular Recipes »


Herbed Tomato Tart

Made with ripe cherry tomatoes and fragrant herbs, this tart is both delicious and beautiful.

SERVES 12–16

2 9” x 11” sheets frozen puff pastry, thawed and chilled
½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
4 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
12 anchovy filets in oil, drained and finely chopped
3 lbs. cherry or grape tomatoes
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
¼ cup finely chopped flat-leaf parsley
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh chives
2 tbsp. finely chopped fresh oregano
Freshly grated nutmeg

1. Heat oven to 375°. Fit pastry sheets side by side into a parchment paper–lined 13” x 17 ¾” rimmed baking pan, pressing pastry against bottom and sides. Trim inner edges of pastry sheets so that they form a seam in center; trim pastry hanging over sides of pan. Prick bottom of pastry with a fork. Line bottom and sides of pastry with parchment paper and fill with dried beans. Bake until edges of tart are golden, 25 minutes. Remove beans and parchment paper, sprinkle Parmesan over tart shell, and bake until cheese is melted and tart shell is golden all over, 15–20 minutes. Transfer to a rack; let cool.

2. Heat oven to broil and arrange a rack 4” from heating element. In a large bowl, mix together oil and anchovies; add tomatoes and season with salt and pepper. Toss to coat. Transfer tomato mixture to a rimmed baking sheet and broil, shaking pan once or twice, until tomatoes blister, 12–14 minutes. Let cool slightly. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the tomato mixture to the prepared tart shell; distribute tomatoes evenly.

3. Increase oven heat to 425°. In a medium bowl, combine the parsley, chives, oregano, and nutmeg; sprinkle herb mixture evenly over the tomatoes. Return tart to oven and bake until hot, about 15 minutes. Let tart cool slightly before serving.

See More: 30 Pasta and Potato Salads »


Grapefruit-and-Seafood Ceviche

Grapefruit juice, fiery jalapeño, and fragrant ginger transform shrimp, scallops, and calamari into an aromatic, spicy salad.


1 lb. rock or small shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails removed
12 oz. bay scallops, cleaned
12 oz. calamari rings and tentacles
1 tbsp. honey
3 red grapefruit, peeled and supremed, juices reserved
Juice of 1 lime
1 jalapeño, stemmed and thinly sliced crosswise
1 (2”) piece ginger, peeled and julienned
Kosher salt, to taste
3 tbsp. olive oil
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 cup cilantro leaves and tender stems
1 cup mint leaves
1. Toss shrimp, scallops, calamari, honey, juices, jalapeño, ginger, and salt in a bowl. Cover with plastic wrap; chill until shrimp are opaque, about 1 hour.

2. Heat oil and garlic in an 8” skillet over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until garlic is golden and slightly crisp, 2–3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer garlic to paper towels to drain; reserve oil and let cool.

3. Unwrap seafood mixture; add grapefruit, cilantro, and mint. Toss to combine and transfer ceviche to a serving dish. Drizzle with reserved garlic oil; sprinkle with reserved garlic.


Pesto Focaccia

Focaccia is delicious no matter which way you make it, but we especially love it topped with pesto and studded with tomatoes, olives, and onions.

SERVES 12–16

1¼ cups packed basil leaves
¼ cup olive oil
¼ cup finely grated parmesan
2 tbsp. minced sun-dried tomatoes in oil
2 tbsp. pine nuts
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

1 tbsp. active dry yeast
⅓ cup boiled, mashed potatoes
1 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted
1 tbsp. lager beer
1 tbsp. kosher salt
4½ cups flour
1 cup durum wheat flour
12 kalamata olives, pitted and halved
10 cherry tomatoes, halved
½ small red onion, thinly sliced
½ cup finely grated parmesan
½ cup packed basil leaves

1. Make the pesto: Process basil, oil, parmesan, tomatoes, nuts, garlic, and salt and pepper in a food processor until smooth; refrigerate.

2. In the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a hook, combine yeast and 2 cups water heated to 115°; let sit until foamy, about 10 minutes. In a bowl, stir together potatoes, butter, beer, and salt until smooth; add to yeast mixture and whisk until smooth. Add flours and mix on medium speed until dough forms. Increase speed to medium-high and knead until dough is smooth, about 8 minutes. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and let rise until tripled in volume, about 3 hours.

3. Transfer dough to a greased 13″ x 18″ rimmed baking sheet and using your fingers, spread dough until it completely covers the bottom. Using your hands, spread pesto evenly over dough, and then scatter olives, tomatoes, and onions over pesto. Sprinkle cheese over top of dough and using your fingertips, press dough all over to form dimples; let sit, uncovered until puffed, about 45 minutes.

4. Heat oven to 400°. Bake focaccia until edges are golden brown and dough is cooked through, about 20 minutes. Let cool for 10 minutes and then scatter basil leaves over top; cut into squares and serve.


Zucchini Fritters (Kolokitho Keftedes)

Zucchini can be boring, but these crunchy fritters with herbs, parmesan, and bread crumbs are anything but.


1 lb. zucchini, grated
2 tsp. kosher salt
½ cup minced flat-leaf parsley
½ cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
½ cup dried bread crumbs
1 medium yellow onion, grated
1 egg, beaten
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Pinch of cayenne, to taste
Olive oil or canola oil, for frying

1. Mix zucchini and salt in a strainer; set a weighted plate on top; let drain for 30 minutes. Transfer zucchini to a tea towel; squeeze out liquid. Mix zucchini, parsley, cheese, bread crumbs, onions, and egg in a bowl. Season with pepper and cayenne; divide mixture into 12 balls. Press balls into ¾”-thick patties.

2. Pour oil into a 4-qt. pot to a depth of 2”; heat over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reads 315°. Working in 2 batches, fry patties until browned and crisp, 5–6 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer fritters to paper towels.


Grilled Shrimp Lettuce Cups

Iceberg lettuce leaves make great hand-held vessels for marinated grilled shrimp. For added kick, drizzle with sweet chile sauce.


1½ lb. raw medium shrimp, peeled and deveined, tails removed
¼ cup olive oil
2 small fresh red Thai chiles, stemmed and finely chopped
1 stalk lemongrass, trimmed, bruised with a mallet, and cut into 2″ pieces
1 (4”-piece) ginger, peeled and grated
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
7 (10”) bamboo skewers, soaked in water for 30 minutes
4 small radishes, julienned
1 medium carrot, julienned
1 cup cilantro leaves
1 cup Thai basil leaves
1 head iceberg lettuce, crisp inner leaves only, for serving
Sweet chile sauce, for serving

1. Combine shrimp, oil, chiles, lemongrass, ginger, salt, and pepper in a bowl; toss to combine. Cover and refrigerate at least 4 hours or up to overnight.

2. Heat a charcoal grill or set a gas grill to high; bank coals or turn off burner on one side (see “Grilling 101”). Heat a plancha or flat cast-iron griddle over coals until very hot. Remove shrimp from marinade and thread onto skewers; grill on plancha, flipping once, until slightly charred and cooked through, about 3 minutes. Remove shrimp from skewers and serve with radishes, carrots, cilantro, and Thai basil leaves in lettuce leaves; drizzle with sweet chile sauce.


Salmorejo (Spanish Chilled Tomato Soup)

Gazpacho’s richer, deeper cousin, this creamy tomato soup is topped with egg and jamón ibérico (or prosciutto). You’ll want bread on hand to mop up every drop.


3 tbsp. kosher salt, plus more to taste
8 plum tomatoes, cored, halved, and seeded
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 baguette (about 10 oz.), cut into large pieces
½ small yellow onion
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
2 tbsp. sherry vinegar
Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
3 hard-boiled eggs, chopped
1 ½ cups finely chopped Iberian ham or prosciutto

Place salt, tomatoes, garlic, bread, and onion in a bowl, cover with boiling water, and let sit for 1 hour. Drain vegetables, reserving 1 cup soaking liquid; place in blender. Squeeze water from bread; place in blender with reserved soaking liquid, oil, and vinegar. Purée until smooth; season with salt and pepper, and chill. Pour into serving bowls; top with eggs, ham, and a drizzle of oil.

— 4 days ago with 32 notes

Spanish-Style Toast with Tomato (Pan Con Tomate)
All you need for this fresh, late-summer snack is a baguette, garlic, good-quality olive oil, a ripe tomato, and sea salt.
See the recipe »


Spanish-Style Toast with Tomato (Pan Con Tomate)

All you need for this fresh, late-summer snack is a baguette, garlic, good-quality olive oil, a ripe tomato, and sea salt.

See the recipe »

— 6 days ago with 18 notes


Because summer isn’t over just yet.

Read more: Breakfast of Champions — Summer Bounty Frittata on Food52.

— 1 week ago with 233 notes