Turn your kitchen into the swankiest spot in town with these incredible recipes for any day of the week. Known for his mouthwatering food served up with a side of sass on Hell’s Kitchen and Bar Rescue, Jason Santos is back with a bang―presenting his latest series of restaurant-quality meals fit for any home cook.
With just a few ingredients and easy-to-follow techniques, you can whip up homemade cuisine with all the standout flavors and unique presentation of a professional kitchen. Recipes include: Pan-Seared Sea Scallops, a signature dish from Hell’s Kitchen with the key technique for perfect seared scallops every time Jalapeño, Cheddar, and Bacon Hush Puppies, with Jason’s glowing endorsement: “God, I love these things” Cajun Rotisserie Chicken Dip, which is so good, it’s been featured in just about every publication in Boston Mama Le’s Egg Rolls, a dish so special, Jason once received a bag of them for Christmas Hot Honey Chicken Mac ’n’ Cheese, the perfect comfort food with a twist.
For those looking to make elegant meals minus the hassle, this cookbook is what you’ve been craving.
Simple Fancy: A Chef’s Big-Flavor Recipes for Easy Weeknight Cooking
Overnight Spiced Challah French Toast
It’s unbelievable, the kind of magic that happens overnight in this decadent dish. Soaking the sweet and soft challah (or brioche) in the liquid custard gives it a deliciously smooth and creamy texture in the center, with crusty, buttery edges that crunch after being crisped up in the oven. You’ll never look at French toast the same way again.
½ cup (120 ml) heavy cream
5 large eggs
2 cups (480 ml) whole milk
2 tsp (10 ml) vanilla extract
2 tsp (10 g) sugar
½ tsp lemon zest
½ tsp ground cinnamon
½ tsp ground cardamom
Pinch of salt
1 loaf challah or brioche, cut into 1″ (2.5-cm) slices
6 tbsp (85 g) butter, divided
The night before you’re going to serve this dish, make the custard: In a large bowl, whisk together the cream, eggs, milk, vanilla, sugar, lemon zest, cinnamon, cardamom, and salt.
Arrange the challah slices in an even layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Pour the custard on top, and let it sit at room temperature for an hour. Carefully turn the bread over, and let sit in the refrigerator overnight.
When ready to serve, in a large nonstick pan over medium heat, melt 2 tablespoons (28 g) of butter. Add several pieces of the bread to the pan and cook 4 to 5 minutes until golden brown on the bottom.
Turn each over and cook again until golden brown. Repeat with the remaining 4 tablespoons (57 g) of butter and bread. Serve hot, and top with your favourite fruits, syrups, or jams—and maybe some chocolate chips and whipped cream for good measure.
Reprinted with permission from Simple Fancy by Jason Santos. Page Street Publishing Co. 2022. Photo credit: Ken Goodman.