No. 517Recipe Card Posted on Leave a comment

Zuni Cafe Chicken Salad

Zuni Cafe Chicken Salad | Bijouxs Little Jewels

Yes, this chicken is an amazing recipe and yes, there is a list of directions, BUT that is what makes this NO ordinary roast chicken. Zuni Cafe Chicken – another little jewel recipe from the Collection.


Long ago and far away, in what seems like a dream to me now, trips to San Francisco were frequent. Just an easy jaunt up the coast to the most beautiful city in the US. During those halcyon days, we used to frequent the very hip & ground breaking Zuni Cafe, with head chef Judy Rogers. The visit was NOT complete without ordering the Roasted Chicken & Bread Salad, still on the menu today. This is my take on this classic salad.


There are a number of recipe directions, but not to fear, you can do this. The base of the dish is a simple roasted small chicken, seasoned with fresh herbs, salt and pepper inserted carefully under the skin to hasten the seasoning. The chicken is flipped over during roasting, that is why a small chicken works best.  Remove the chicken from the pan and rest on a platter after removing from the oven.

The roasting pan drippings are separated from the fat. This is where my favorite gravy strainer comes in very handy. The lean drippings go back in the pan adding a tablespoon or so of water and stir.

Using a sharp knife, slash skin of the chicken between the thighs and the breasts. Then place the bird and roasting juice to rest while you make the bread salad, a very important part of this recipe.

Zuni Chicken Salad | Bijouxs Little Jewels

The bread salad is created from large torn chunks of crust-free peasant bread, about 4 cups. Toss the bread with olive oil, place on a half sheet pan and broil briefly just to brown edges, then remove from oven. For the dressing, mix the olive oil and vinegar, and salt and pepper to taste. Place the bread in a large bowl, toss 1/4 cup of the dressing and add handfuls of the baby greens. Toss to combine. Next up, in a skillet sauté the currants, pine nuts, garlic and scallions, until just softened. Add to the bread salad and combine.

See, not really so hard once you have the ingredients prepared.

Finally it is time to assemble the salad. Place a layer of baby greens on a large platter. Scatter with the dressed pieces of bread salad. Place warm pieces of chicken on top of the bread salad. Slice the larger pieces of chicken and drizzle all with reserved drippings and remaining vinaigrette. Scatter the pine nuts and currants on top and serve. Classic cuisine is always a Little Jewel.

Other San Francisco Favorites include; Bacon Bloody Mary;  San Francisco Cioppino


No. 506Recipe Card Posted on Leave a comment

Rigatoni & Pesto alla Menta (Mint Pesto)

Rigatoni & Pesto alla Menta (Mint Pesto) | Bijouxs Little Jewels

Rigatoni & Pesto alla Menta (Mint Pesto)is a plate of pasta to please Mom on her special day. A savory pesto made with fresh mint is another Little Jewel from the Bijouxs Kitchen, Italian Style.


I know you are thinking mint equals sweet? No, leave it to the Italians to make use of every herb in the garden, like mint, and spin it into a wonderful pasta dish. This pesto is a change from the classic Basil Pesto. Creamy and flecked with fresh mint, pine nuts and Pecorino Romano cheese spiced with a hint of marinated black pepper. A surprise winner. While in Italy I savored every variety of pasta dishes. I do remember a mint pesto dish and I went out searching for a recipe. Yes, mint pesto (Pesto alla Menta) is an Italian classic. This recipe is a simple one I found, with slight adaptations, it feel like the pasta I had in Italy.


While in Italy I savored every variety of pasta dishes. I do remember a mint pesto dish and I went out searching for a recipe. Yes, mint pesto (Pesto alla Menta) is an Italian classic. This recipe is a simple one I found, with slight adaptations, it feel like the pasta I had in Italy.


This Spring I took a cutting from a friend’s mint plant. I always admired how lush and vigorous it was. Well, I planted a form of “super mint” that turned into mint gone wild. Living along the coast receiving a record amount of rain sent the mint taking over the entire garden. I harvested a huge crop of mint and will freeze some for later. A fresh mint pesto recipe came to mind, and here it is.


Sturdy rigatoni works well with this pesto. Fresh mint leaves are the star, yet they do not overpower the pesto and are NOT at all sweet. Classic pesto components such as garlic, pine nuts, and Romano cheese are included. There is bright bite from the marinated black peppercorns and red pepper flakes. Serve with extra cheese if desired. The pesto pairs well with soft cheeses, a topping for ripe tomatoes and of course on pizza.


No. 505Recipe Card Posted on Leave a comment

Miso Udon Noodle Soup

Miso Udon Noodle Soup | Bijouxs Little Jewels

Quick comfort = a bowl of noodles. Miso Udon Noodle Soup is both quick & comforting. The savory Unami flavor is ready in 15 minutes. Soup’s on – another Little Jewels from the Bijouxs Kitchen.


Noodles,  always a favorite in the Bijouxs Kitchen. My Hurry Curry Laksa has been a unique favorite, while my Feeling Good Bowl of Noodles is a simple vegan comfort soup. Japanese food is a joy, I always order Udon noodles when dining out but now living far from my home town restaurants, I decided to give Udon Noodle Soup a try.


I really think you are going to like this recipe. I spotted fresh Udon noodles in Trader Joe’s now the main ingredient was secured and the rest was simple. Udon Noodle Soup when dining out can be served in many versions – I tend to favor the simple bowl with mushrooms & vegetables in a rich brown broth. That was the model I used for this soup and this is now going to be a go-to favorite.


Who does not like meals in 15 minutes! This udon is exactly what I want, noodles bathed in a bowl of miso infused broth with Shiitake mushrooms, garlic, ginger and sliced green onion. All the ingredients are easily picked up at your favorite supermarket. Dried udon noodles will also work, or any thick chewy noodle of your choice.

Miso Udon Noodle Soup | Bijouxs Little Jewels

Miso Udon Noodle Soup another simply satisfying Little Jewel from the Bijouxs Kitchen.






No. 495Recipe Card Posted on Leave a comment

Eggplant Gratin Provençal

Eggplant Gratin Provençal | Bijouxs Little Jewels

Food fads come and go, but the Bijouxs remain. In 2023 Bijouxs Little Jewels Recipe Collection will celebrate 13, yes thirteen years! I have been bringing you recipes and photography created from my curated collection of recipes, gathered on all my many food journeys around the world and working as a personal chef. To kick off 2023 I am sharing my latest version of a classic I posted back early in the blog days, Eggplant Gratin Provençal. Continue reading Eggplant Gratin Provençal