April 27, 2011

Klatch Guest: Chef Matt

A friend of the Klatch, Chef Matt (formerly worked with Todd English, now can be seen at Ballston’s Rustico) makes seriously tasty food. His tuna tartare is one of my fondest culinary memories and he singlehandedly rehabilitated beets for me.

With reformed beets in mind, I asked Chef Matt about key ingredients that home cooks overlook but every kitchen should have. Here are his picks.

Spanish Smoked Paprika. “A very versatile ingredient. I use it in dressings, marinades, soups, stews. It adds a subtle smokey flavor. I even add it to popcorn.”

Spanish Smoked Paprika is also very nice with eggs too!
Photo: Williams Sonoma

So far so good. I have some Smoked Paprika in my spice drawer though it never occurred to me to put it on popcorn.

he next ingredient in on Matt’s list gave me a pause. Capers. You got me there. “I never see capers in anyone’s kitchen, but they are great with salads, sandwiches, sauces, fish.” Seems like a trip to the market is in order.

Caper really is a beauty, when not pickled in a jar.
This plate is from Otto Wilhelm Thome Capparis Spinosa
Final pick: Good Mustard. “If I see yellow mustard it someone’s fridge, I get nauseous.”

(Thankfully I only keep Dijon around) Photo: Whole Foods.

Cook books picks and even a recipe from Chef Matt to come, but that’s for another Klatch.

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