If you think supermodels maintain their waif-like figure by not eating, then you obviously haven’t met Chrissy Teigen. The voluptuous model-turned-food blogger-turned-cookbook author is proving to the world just how much she loves cooking and eating with the release of her recipe book, Cravings: Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat.
And we’re not just talking salads and soups here. In her book, Chrissy, 31 ― mum to Luna, 1 ― shares amazing recipes you won’t be able to resist, many of which are inspired by her own clan. From hubby John Legend’s famous fried chicken and her dad’s fried fish burger, to her mum’s Thai classics, this book has it all.
Salty, spicy, saucy and fun, these dishes are sure to be a hit with everyone all year round. Here are three of our favourites!
Butternut Squash Soup with Prosciutto Crisps
Prep time: 25 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 30 minute
Chrissy says: “While most butternut squash soups are a little too sweet for my liking, this one is all caramelised goodness. Crisping the sage and prosciutto takes every spoonful to the next level — I love to hide half of it on the bottom of each bowl!”
2 small or 1 large butternut squash (about 1.6kg), peeled, seeded and cut into 1-inch cubes
5 tbsps extra virgin olive oil, plus more for frying the sage
1 tbsp kosher salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth
16 sage leaves
1 medium onion, chopped
1 tbsp minced garlic (about 2 cloves)
¾ cup heavy cream, plus a little more for serving
6 prosciutto crisps (follow recipe below)
1. In a large bowl, toss together the squash, 1 tablespoon of the oil, salt, and pepper.
2. In the biggest soup pot you have, heat 2 tablespoons of the oil over medium-high heat. Add half the squash, spread it out in one layer and let it sit until the underside gets nice and dark brown, 6 to 7 minutes.
3. Using a metal spatula, lift the squash, scraping the bottom of the pot as much as possible, and try to flip the squash, but don’t worry if you don’t flip all of it. Continue to cook the squash until the underside is browned, 5 to 6 minutes.
4. Add just enough of the broth to dissolve the sticky bits in the pot and dump it all into a big bowl. Rinse and wipe the pot out and repeat the cooking with the remaining squash and 2 tablespoons oil, only leave this batch in the pot when it’s done.
5. Finely chop 4 sage leaves and add to the pot. Add the onion and garlic and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan to loosen those yummy browned bits, until the onions are soft and lightly golden, about 9 minutes.
6. Add the previous batch of squash and the remaining broth and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat and simmer until the squash is tender and starting to fall apart, about 25 minutes.
7. While the soup is simmering, in a small saucepan, heat about ½ inch of olive oil over medium heat until shimmering-hot. Working in batches, add the sage to the hot oil and watch them crisp up. This will only take 10 to 15 seconds.
8. You’ll know they’re ready when they stop sizzling but are still a pretty, green, “sagey” colour. As each batch is done, remove and drain on paper towels.
9. Transfer the soup to a blender and blend until almost smooth; a few chunks are okay. Do this in batches if necessary ― use a towel to protect your hand from hot splashes. Return the soup to the pot, add the cream, and simmer until warmed through, about 5 minutes.
10. Divide the soup into six bowls, swirl a spoonful of cream into each one, then top each bowl with the prosciutto crisps and two crispy sage leaves.
1. Have as many pieces of thin-sliced prosciutto as you want.
2. Preheat the oven to 200 deg C. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
3. Arrange the prosciutto in a single layer on the baking sheet. Bake for about 11 to 13 minutes, until wrinkled and slightly shrunken. It will crisp as it cools.
Crab Cakes Benedict with Avocado
Prep time: 30 minutes
Total time: 1 hour 30 minutes
Chrissy says: “How can I make this lower in carbs and more delicious?” is what I ask when starting lots of my recipes. By replacing the traditional English muffin in Eggs Benedict with crabmeat, I can sleep knowing I have completed my goal. And is there anything worse than a bready crab cake? Anyhoo…that runny yolk seeping into your greens with the lumpy crab and red pepper sauce? The ultimate!
Fake Hollandaise sauce
½ cup mayonnaise
¼ cup Sriracha sauce
1 tsp minced garlic
¼ tsp kosher salt
1 large egg
2 tbsps mayonnaise
1½ tsps Dijon mustard
1 tsp Sriracha sauce
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
½ tsp kosher salt
½ tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsps minced chives
340g lump crabmeat
⅓ cup fine fresh bread crumbs
½ cup canola oil
2 cups baby arugula
1 small avocado, sliced
½ tsp distilled white vinegar or lemon juice
Freshly ground black pepper
To make the fake hollandaise
In a bowl, stir together the mayonnaise, Sriracha sauce, garlic, and salt until combined. Refrigerate until ready to use.
To make the crab cakes
1. In a bowl, whisk together the egg, mayo, mustard, Sriracha sauce, Worcestershire sauce, salt, pepper, and chives.
2. Add the crabmeat and bread crumbs and gently fold, trying not to break up the crab.
3. Shape it into 4 crab cakes, arrange them on a plate, cover, and refrigerate for 1 hour.
4. In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is shimmering-hot, gently lay the crab cakes in and fry until golden on the underside, about 4 minutes. Gently flip and fry an additional 4 minutes. Drain on paper towels and cover with foil to keep warm.
To poach the eggs
1. Bring a large skillet of water to a simmer over high heat.
2. Divide the arugula and avocado among four plates and top each plate with a crab cake. Cover with foil to keep warm.
3. Add the vinegar to the simmering water. Crack the eggs into individual small bowls. As you slip each egg and into the simmering water, remove the skillet from the heat, cover, and let cook until the whites are solid, 3 to 4 minutes.
4. Using a slotted spoon, drain the eggs from the water and top each crab cake with an egg. Spoon some fake hollandaise sauce over each egg, season with pepper, and serve right away.
Dad’s Fried Fish Sandwich with Coleslaw and Tartar Sauce
Makes 4 sandwiches
Total time: 40 minutes
Chrissy says: “Years before, my dad went on a lifelong mission to copy the tartar sauce he dubbed the most epic sauce to ever adorn his mouth, a sauce from a place called Cap’n Yobi’s. In a painter’s bucket in the back of his and mum’s tavern, that mission was fulfilled. So, slather that sweet tartar sauce onto this crispy fish sammie with tangy slaw, and you’ll be eating an old piece of Teigen history.”
For the coleslaw
1 cup shredded red cabbage
1 cup shredded green cabbage
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 tbsp distilled white vinegar
¼ tsp kosher salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
For the tartar sauce
1 cup mayonnaise
5 tbsps finely-chopped yellow onion
¼ cup finely-chopped sweet pickles
2 tbsps finely-chopped dill pickles
2 cloves garlic, minced or grated
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
For the sandwiches
8 slider buns
Softened unsalted butter, for spreading on the buns
4 slices cheese
For the fish and batter
450g thin halibut fillets, cut into 8 (2 × 1-inch) rectangles
¾ cup cold seltzer (or any carbonated) water
¼ cup really cold vodka (from a frozen bottle if possible)
1 large egg, beaten
¾ cup all-purpose flour
⅓ cup cornstarch
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Vegetable oil, for frying
Step 1: Prep the buns
1. Preheat the oven to 230 deg C.
2. Halve the buns and arrange them, cut-side up, on a baking sheet. Butter them to taste and put some cheese on each top bun. Set aside while you cook the fish.
Step 2: Batter and fry the fish
1. Heat 4 inches of oil in a big pot over medium-high heat until it reaches 190 deg C on a deep-fry thermometer, or until a few drops of batter sizzle immediately on contact.
2. In a big bowl, whisk together the seltzer, vodka, and egg gently, so you don’t unfizz the seltzer. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, cornstarch, and 1½ tsps salt. Add the flour mixture to the wet ingredients and stir until they’re just combined (there may be a few small lumps).
3. When the oil is ready, dip the fish into the batter three or four pieces at a time and carefully lower the pieces into the hot oil. Fry until golden brown and crisp, 2 to 3 minutes per batch, then drain the fish on paper towels. Season them with a little salt and pepper while they’re still hot.
Step 3: Make the coleslaw
In a large bowl, combine the cabbages, oil, vinegar, salt and pepper.
Step 4: Make the tartar sauce
In a small bowl, combine the mayo, onion, pickles, and garlic. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Step 5: Assemble the sandwiches
Warm the buns in the oven until the cheese just begins to melt and the edges are toasty, 2 to 3 minutes. Spread some tartar sauce on each bottom bun, then pile on a little coleslaw. Place a piece of fried fish on top of the coleslaw and close each sandwich with a bun top. Serve right away.
Recipes adapted from Cravings: Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat, by Chrissy Teigen.
Photos: Cravings: Recipes for All the Food You Want to Eat
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