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Cooking with the Stars Part II: Recipes from the Archives

Last month, in preparation for the season of holiday parties, I reprinted a few recipes found in Dance Magazine's vast archives from ballerinas Lupe Serrano and Tanaquil LeClercq. Today I'm bringing you part II—more culinary specialties from other notable chefs artists.


In the late 1980s, Dance Magazine's December issues included a "Holiday Treats" series. Here are a few of my favorite recipes:


Choura's Honey Chicken (from Alexandra "Choura" Danilova)

1 chicken, cut into pieces

1/3 cup softened butter

1/2 cup honey

1/4 cup mustard

4 tsp curry powder

Stir honey, mustard, and curry powder into softened butter. Coat chicken pieces well. Place chicken skin-side down in large, flat baking dish or pan. Bake at 350º for 45 minutes. Turn chicken and cook 15 more minutes.


(Danilova with Frederic Franklin in the Ballet Russe's Nutcracker. Photo by Maurice Seymour, DM Archives.)



Una Kai's Danish Apple Cake

1 box zwieback (crisp toast)

8 sweet or tart apples

1/2 lb. butter

Cinnamon and sugar, to taste

Vanilla-flavored whipping cream

Crumble zwieback in food processor or with a rolling pin. Peel, core, and cut apples into quarters, then cut each quarter into three sections. Layer an 8" pie plate or casserole alternately with crumbs and apples, dusting apple layers with cinnamon and sugar. Pour melted butter over the top. Bake at 350º until apples are soft. Serve warm with vanilla-flavored whipped cream.


(Una Kai with New York City Ballet, undated photo by Walter E. Owen, DM Archives.)




Patricia Wilde's Party Pistou

(Vegetable Soup with Pistou. Pistou recipe follows soup instructions)

3 cups water

3/4 cup dry white beans (Great Northern, marrow, or navy)

4 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup diced onions

1 pound tomatoes, peeled, seeded, and coarsely chopped (about 1 1/2 cups)

3 1/2 quarts water

1 1/2 cups diced carrots

1 1/2 cups diced potatoes suitable for boiling

1 cup chopped leeks (optional)

1/2 cup coarsely chopped celery leaves

1 tablespoon salt

freshly ground black pepper

1 1/2 cups sliced fresh green string beans

1 1/2 cups diced, unpeeled zucchini

1/2 cup broken pieces of spaghettini


Bring 3 cups of water to a boil in a 2- to 3-quart saucepan. Drop in dry beans and boil them for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let beans soak for 1 hour. Return pan to low heat and simmer uncovered for 1 to 1.5 hours, or until beans are tender. Drain beans and reserve the cooking liquid. In a heavy soup pot or kettle, heat 4 tablespoons of olive oil. Stir in diced onions and cook over moderate heat until limp and golden, then add tomatoes and cook for 3 or 4 minutes longer. Pour in 3 quarts of water and bring to a boil over high heat. Add carrots, potatoes, leeks, celery leaves, salt, and a few grindings of pepper; reduce heat and simmer uncovered 15 minutes. Stir in white beans, their cooking liquid, the green beans, zucchini, a spaghettini, and simmer for 15 minutes, or until vegetables are tender. Season to taste.



5 garlic cloves, finely chopped

1/2 cup finely cut fresh basil or 5 tablespoons dried basil

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

6 tablespoons olive oil

1 small slice stale French bread, finely crumbled (optional)

1 1/2 cups freshly grated Parmesan cheese

While soup is simmering, prepare the pistou. With a food processor (or a wooden spoon and heavy bowl), pound garlic and basil into a paste. Work in 1/2 cup of the cheese then beat in 6 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 tablespoon at a time. Before serving, pour the pistou into the soup and mix well. Serve extra grated cheese as desired.


(Patricia Wilde in costume for Balanchine's La Valse, circa 1951. Photo by Water E. Owen, DM Archives.)



Kent Stowell's Old Dad's Salad

1 cup black beans

2 quarts water

2 tablespoons olive oil


Wash beans. Soak in water and olive oil overnight. Cook slowly 2–3 hours until tender but not mushy. Drain and let cool.


1 cup couscous

2 cups water

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon salt


Pour couscous gradually into boiling water. Add oil and salt. Boil 2 minutes stirring occasionally. remove from heat, cover and let stand 10–15 minutes. Fluff with fork. Let cool.


2 cups raw barley

6 cups water

1 tablespoon salt


Wash barley; remove foreign objects; rinse. Cook slowly in 6 cups water until tender, 45–60 minutes. Drain and let cool.


1 large can garbanzo beans

2 tablespoons olive oil


Heat oil in skillet. Drain garbanzos and brown in oil. Drain and let cool.


Vinaigrette Dressing

3/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (or Balsamic vinegar)

2 tablespoons Dijon mustard

1 finely chopped garlic clove

1 cup chopped scallions

salt and pepper to taste

(Optional: tarragon, basil, 1 cup chopped celery or mushrooms, red or green peppers.)

In a large bowl, mix dressing with other ingredients until fully absorbed. Let stand at room temperature for at least one hour before serving. Adjust seasoning, garnish with parsley and serve.

(Kent Stowell (seated) with Maurice Sendak, rehearsing Pacific Northwest Ballet's Nutcracker, circa 1983. DM Archives.)

The Conversation
James Whiteside (Jayme Thornton for Dance Magazine)

Say you're perpetually impeccable designer Thom Browne. Say you're planning your Spring 2020 Paris menswear show along a "Versailles country club" theme. Say you want a world-class danseur to open the show with some kind of appropriately fabulous choreography.

Who do you call? James Whiteside, of course. On Saturday, the American Ballet Theatre principal—wearing pointe shoes and a glorious pinstriped tutu—kicked off Browne's presentation at the École des Beaux-Arts with a 15-minute, show-stealing solo. Whiteside choreographed the piece himself, with the help of detailed notes from the designer.

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I told myself I'd take two months off, and all would be better.

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