THE Dish: Gail Simmons' Shashuka with fennel and feta

Gail Simmons' Shakshuka with fennel and feta
Gail Simmons' Shakshuka with fennel and feta

(CBS News) Famed chef Gail Simmons, a regular judge and critic on the No. 1 food show on cable TV -- Bravo's "Top Chef" -- joined "CBS This Morning: Saturday" for "THE Dish."

Special section: Food and Wine

Simmons is also the special projects director for Food & Wine magazine, and shared some of the dishes featured in the magazine for a special brunch menu.

Check out the recipes featured on "CTM: Saturday" below:

Recipes from FOOD & WINE

Shakshuka with fennel and feta

Contributed by Gail Simmons

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small onion, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 1 small fennel bulb, cored and thinly sliced
  • 2 Serrano chiles, seeded and chopped
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and finely chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • Kosher salt
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon harissa
  • 1 teaspoon sweet spanish smoked paprika
  • One 28-ounce can whole tomatoes, chopped with their liquid
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 6 large eggs
  • 2 tablespoons chopped parsley
  • 1/2 cup crumbled feta cheese

1. In a large skillet, heat the oil. Add the onion and fennel and cook over moderately high heat, stirring, until softened, 3 minutes. Add both chiles and the bell pepper and season with salt. Cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic, harissa and paprika and cook, stirring, until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the tomatoes and water and simmer over low heat until the sauce is thickened, 10 minutes.

2. Crack the eggs into the sauce. Cover and cook over moderately low heat until the whites are firm and the yolks are runny, 5 minutes. Spoon the sauce and eggs into bowls and sprinkle with the parsley and crumbled feta. Serve right away.

Notes one serving 191 cal, 10 gm fat, 2.7 gm sat fat, 18 gm carb, 5 gm fiber, 10 gm protein. Serve with warm pita.

Homefries with jalapenos

Contributed by Marcia Kiesel

Active: 20 min

Total time: 45 min

Servings: 4

  • 1 1/2 pounds small red potatoes, scrubbed but not peeled
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 small red onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 large jalapenos-halved, seeded and sliced 1/4 inch thick
  • 1/4 teaspoon cumin seeds
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper

1. In a large saucepan, cover the potatoes with water and bring to a boil. Cook until the potatoes are starting to soften, about 8 minutes. Drain the potatoes and let cool slightly, then cut them into 1-inch pieces.

2. In a large, nonstick skillet, heat the olive oil. Add the potatoes, cover and cook over moderately low heat until just tender, about 10 minutes; stir halfway through. Stir in the onion, jalapeños and cumin seeds. Cover and cook, stirring a few times, until the onion and jalapenos are tender, about 10 minutes. Uncover and cook over moderately high heat until the potatoes are browned on the bottom, about 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper and serve.

Escarole with pickled butternut squash

Contributed by Gabriel Rucker

Total time: 45 min

Servings: 8

Quick-pickling butternut squash in cider vinegar, sugar and salt makes it really tangy and crunchy. Gabriel Rucker tosses it with greens and a creamy, garlicky sage dressing.

  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt, plus more for seasoning
  • 3 ounces butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1/4-inch dice (1/2 cup)
  • 1 large egg yolk or 3 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
  • 6 large sage leaves
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 teaspoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • 1/3 cup canola oil
  • Freshly ground pepper
  • 1 head of escarole (12 ounces), inner yellow and light green leaves only, torn into bite-size pieces

Maple-bacon bread pudding

Contributed by Zoe Nathan

Active: 30 min

Total time: 3 hrs

Servings: 8 to 10

This puffy, custardy pudding is like eggs, bacon and french toast, all in one dish. It's also superb the next day. Zoe Nathan always makes extra so she can slice it and fry it in butter during the week.

  • 1 pound thick-cut bacon
  • Unsalted butter, for greasing
  • 17 large eggs
  • 1 cup creme fraiche
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3 3/4 cups half-and-half
  • 3/4 cup pure maple syrup, plus more for serving
  • 1 1/2 pounds brioche (3 small loaves), crusts discarded and loaves sliced 1 inch thick (see note)
  • Chopped toasted pecans, for serving

1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil and arrange the bacon on it in a single layer. Bake the bacon for 25 to 30 minutes, until it is browned and nearly crisp. Transfer the bacon to paper towels to drain and cool, then coarsely chop it.

2. Meanwhile, butter a 9-by-13-inch ceramic baking dish. In a large bowl, beat the eggs with the creme fraiche, sugar, vanilla seeds and salt, then beat in the half-and-half and the 3/4 cup of maple syrup.

3. Layer half of the brioche slices in the prepared baking dish and sprinkle with half of the chopped bacon. Repeat the layering with the remaining brioche and bacon. Pour the custard over the brioche and gently press the bread into the custard. Cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.

4. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Uncover the bread pudding and bake for about 1 hour 10 minutes, until puffed and the center is just set. Let stand for 15 minutes. Serve with chopped pecans and maple syrup.

Make ahead

The recipe can be prepared through step 3 and refrigerated overnight.

Leftover bread crusts, such as those from the brioche here, can be lightly toasted, then chopped in a food processor to use as bread crumbs.

Honey-baked figs with ice cream or 0 percent Greek yogurt

Contributed by quick from Scratch Italian

Use purplish-black mission figs, green-skinned calimyrnas, or both for this great-tasting dessert. Give the figs a gentle squeeze to check for ripeness; they should be quite soft.

  • 12 fresh figs
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 4 teaspoons honey
  • 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into 12 pieces
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 pint vanilla ice cream or 1 pint 0 percent Greek yogurt

1. Heat the oven to 425 degrees. Cut the stems off the figs. Rub the oil over the figs and put them in a baking pan, stem-side up. Cut a cross in the top of each fig, cutting almost to the bottom.

2. Drizzle the honey over the figs. Top each one with a piece of the butter. Bake the figs until they open up like flowers, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven.

3. Put the figs on plates, add the water to the pan, return the pan to the oven for 1 minute, and then stir to make a sauce. Drizzle the sauce over the warm figs and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.

Notes variations sprinkle one-half cup chopped walnuts or pistachios over the figs after the first seven minutes of cooking.

Sriracha bloody mary

Contributed by Melissa Rubel Jacobson

Active: 10 min

Total time: 1 hr 10 min

Servings: 4

  • Sriracha replaces Tabasco in this version of a bloody mary.
  • 4 cups tomato juice
  • 3/4 cup vodka
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons prepared horseradish
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 teaspoon celery seed
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 4 large caper berries
  • 4 pickled onions
  • 4 tender celery stalks, leaves attached

1. In a large pitcher, mix the tomato juice with the vodka, lemon juice, horseradish, Sriracha, Worcestershire sauce and celery seed and season with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until chilled, about 1 hour.

2. Thread a caper berry and a pickled onion on each of four toothpicks. Fill glasses with ice and add the bloody mary. Garnish each drink with a celery stalk, a caper berry-onion toothpick and serve.