"Eden Eats": Chef Eden Grinshpan on the food TV obsession of her younger years

The Dish: Chef Eden Grinshpan

Growing up in Toronto, Eden Grinshpan was fascinated by celebrity chefs she'd see on television and decided on cooking as a career. She earned dual degrees at London's famed Le Cordon Bleu cooking school before jobs and travel took her far and wide to India, Israel and Southeast Asia. 

But it was while working at a bakery here in New York that she put together her first reel of "Eden Eats" which led to her show on the Cooking Channel and launched a thriving TV career. Just last year she opened Dez in New York City, a Middle Eastern fast-casual restaurant inspired by her travels. 

Here are some of Grinshpan's signature recipes: 

Charred cauliflower with garlicky tahini and preserved lemon chimichurri

Cauliflower ingredients:
• 1 head cauliflower
• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt

Sauce ingredients:
• 1 cup cilantro
• 1 cup parsley
• 1 garlic clove
• 2 tablespoons chopped preserved lemon (rinds only)
• 1 1/2 cups extra-virgin olive oil
• 1/2 cup rehydrated currants (soaked in hot water for 30 minutes and then strained)
• 1/3 cup white wine vinegar
• 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
• fried capers, for garnish
• fresh dill, for garnish

Garlicky tahini:
• 1 cup good quality raw tahini (like Soom and Seed + Mill)
• juice of 1/2 lemon
• 1 garlic clove, grated
• 1/2 cup ice water
• kosher salt, to taste 

Directions

1. Pre-heat the oven to 450°F. Cut the cauliflower into florets and toss with the olive oil and salt; place in the oven for 15 to 17 minutes until golden and toasted. Remove and prepare the sauces.
2. In a blender place the cilantro, parsley, garlic, and preserved lemon. Blend and slowly add in the oil.
3. When all mixed together, remove from the blender and stir in the currants and the vinegar.
Make the garlicky tahini- In a bowl mix the raw tahini with the grated garlic, lemon juice, salt and ice water. Mix until just combined. Place the tahini on the bottom of the plate, Sprinkle over the charred cauliflower.
4. Pour the sauce over the cauliflower to taste. Top with the dill. 

Lamb kebab "burger" pitas

Ingredients

16 ounces ground lamb
2 garlic cloves- finely grated
1 shallot, finely chopped
¼ cup freshly chopped parsley
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp ground coriander
¼ tsp cinnamon
1 tsp paprika
2 tsp kosher salt
1 tsp black pepper 
Garlicky tahini (recipe above)

Fried eggplant ingredients

1 small eggplant
3 tablespoons grapeseed oil
kosher salt to finish 

Radish parsley salad ingredients

2 radishes, sliced very fine (I would recommend using a mandolin)
2 cucumbers, sliced very fine
1/4 red onion, sliced very fine
1 handful of fresh parsley leaves
1 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 lemon freshly squeezed
pinch of kosher salt

Lamb directions

  • To cook the burger, place a cast iron pan on high heat. Season the burgers well on both sides with salt and black pepper. Sear one side until it has a beautiful crust around 2 minutes and then flip over. Sear another 2-3 minutes and then let rest before assembling the burger
  • In a bowl mix together the lamb, garlic, cumin, coriander, paprika, cinnamon, paprika, chopped parsley, shallots and season well with salt and pepper. Form into patties and keep in the fridge until use. Make sure you remove the meat from the fridge at least 20 minutes before you grill or pan sear it. Make the tahini sauce, eggplant and salad while the burger comes to room temp. 

Eggplant directions

  • Slice the eggplant into 1/8 inch thick slices, lay them on a tray and season well with salt. Let sit with the salt for 10-15 minutes until little water droplets form on top. Pat down with a paper towel.
  • Heat up a skillet with a lot of grapeseed oil. Fry on both sides until golden, around 8 minutes. Remove from the heat and season with salt.

For the radish parsley salad:

• Slice the radishes, cucumbers and red onion with a mandolin. Place in a bowl with the fresh parsley leaves and drizzle over the extra virgin olive oil, lemon juice and season with salt. 

To assemble, place the lamb kebab, eggplant, and salad in the pita. Drizzle the tahini over the top.

Harissa and honey-roasted carrot meze 

Ingredients

• 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
• 3 tablespoons honey
• 1 tablespoon harissa paste
• 1 teaspoon cumin
• salt and pepper, to taste
• 2 pounds small carrots, peeled
• 1 cup Greek yogurt or labneh
• dukkah spice blend, for garnish 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 450°F.

2. Mix the olive oil, honey, harissa, cumin, salt, and pepper in a bowl.

3. Remove 2 tablespoons to reserve for garnish and toss the rest in the carrots.

4. Lay carrots out in a sheet pan and roast in the oven for 20 minutes, or until golden and slightly burnt on the edges.

5. To plate, spread the yogurt or labneh on the bottom of a shallow bowl and gently lay the warm carrots on top. Drizzle over the rest of the harissa-honey mixture, then sprinkle on the dukkah.

Smokey babaganoush 

Ingredients

Za'atar Olive Oil:
• 2 tablespoons za'atar spice
• 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

Garlicky Tahini:
• 1 cup good quality raw tahini (like Soom and Seed + Mill)
• juice of 1/2 lemon
• 1 garlic clove, grated
• 1/2 cup ice water
• kosher salt, to taste

Eggplant dip:
• 2 eggplants
• 1/4 cup garlicky tahini
• 1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
• 1 teaspoon kosher salt
• 1 teaspoon pomegranate molasses
• 1/2 teaspoon za'atar olive oil
• pomegranate arils, for garnish
• handful fresh basil leaves
• handful fresh mint leaves
• pita bread or challah, for dipping 

Directions

1. Make the za'atar olive oil by combining 2 tablespoons za'atar spice with extra-virgin olive oil and stir until blended.

2. Make the garlicky tahini by combining tahini, lemon juice, garlic, water, and salt in a bowl and mix together. The sauce will get to a very thick consistency, but fear not; this always happens. Keep adding water until it smooths out and becomes a lighter color. Tahini with the perfect consistency can fall through the tines of your fork, but not too easily. Check for seasoning; you may need more salt or lemon juice. Set aside.

3. Heat a grill (or grill pan) on high heat and score the skin of the eggplant. Place on grill for 30 minutes until the skin is black, deflated, is fully cooked, and has developed a smoky flavor, making sure to turn several times throughout. Let cool on a strainer so all the juices drip away.

4. Once cooled, removed the skin from the eggplant meat and place in a bowl with 1/4 cup of the garlicky tahini, fresh lemon juice, and the kosher salt. Mix with a whisk until all is combined. You may need to add more garlicky tahini depending on the size of the eggplants.

5. Place a cup full of the dip into a bowl, using your spoon to spread it so there is a well in the center. Drizzle around pomegranate molasses on top, then the za'atar olive oil. Sprinkle on pomegranate arils and garnish with leaves of fresh basil and fresh mint. Serve with warm pita bread or challah.

Spiced pear crostata

Ingredients

1 ½ cups all purpose flour
½ tsp kosher salt
1 ½ tsp cardamom
8 tablespoons unsalted butter- very cold and cut into chunks
1/2 cup ice cold water- plus a little extra if it's not coming together
3 pears, washed, sliced very thin (try and keep all the pears together, so you can fan it out

1 tablespoon honey
1 lemon zest
2 cups toasted walnuts- finely chopped
½ tsp cinnamon
¼ tsp ground clove
¼ tsp kosher salt
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tsp demerara sugar
2 tablespoons heavy cream
vanilla ice cream to serve with a little drizzle of honey or a sprinkle of cinnamon 

Directions

  • In a bowl place the flour, 1 tsp cardamom and the salt- whisk to combine them. Place in the cold butter and with a butter cutter, cut the butter into the flour. If you don't have a butter cutter, place in the blender and pulse a couple times until the butter is distributed, it should look sandy. 
  • Pour in the water and mix or pulse until it just forms together. Place on a floured surface and using your hands press into a ball. You don't want to play with it too much so do this just until it all comes together. Wrap in cling film and place in the fridge for at least an hour. 
  • Mix the chopped walnuts with the sugar, ½ tsp cinnamon, salt , ½ tsp cardamom and clove. Remove the crostata rom the fridge and roll out into a ½ inch thick and keep as round at possible.
  •  Spread the walnut spread on the bottom as evenly as possible. Arrange the pears on top trying to keep them in their original shape just fan out. Drizzle over the honey and sprinkle over the zest. Fold of the sides to that it closes the shape over the pears. One piece over the next. Brush the cream on top of the edges and sprinkle the edges with the demerara sugar. Place into the pre-heated oven for 1 hour and 20-30 minutes or until the crust is golden. Remove and serve with ice cream and a little sprinkle of cinnamon on top of the ice cream.