During quarantine, cooking has reached new heights, with amateur bakers trying ambitious desserts, and accomplished cooks working through ever varied recipes. For one set of fashion designers, this time has been all about tried and true favorites, including one recipe passed down through generations.
If you follow Laura Kim, co-creative director of Monse and Oscar de la Renta on Instagram, you know the designer is quite the chef, often debuting her delectable dishes, including a recent gluten-free fried shrimp meal made with rice vermicelli. The designer shares with Vogue one of her favorite recipes—an elegant, yet complicated French dish called Chou Farçi—one that she says is “the sort of dish that will make those at your table wonder, ‘If this is the starter, what are we having for the main course?’”
Designer Phillip Lim has often turned to favorite recipes his mom would cook for him as a kid growing up in Orange County, California—many of which are spotlighted in his sold-out 2019 cookbook, More Than Our Bellies, which was published in collaboration with photographer Vivianne Sassen. More recently, in light of the Coronavirus pandemic, the designer has decided to revive the book via a digital release, with $10 from each sale going to support NYC’s City Harvest.
Carolina Herrera creative director Wes Gordon has held onto an old recipe passed down through his family tree—a delicious oatmeal cookie recipe he still has handwritten by his grandmother. It is one he says is both easy to make, and easily customizable, too. Similarly, during this time in quarantine, Alejandra Alonso Rojas has turned to one of her favorite dishes from childhood, a classic Spanish omelet.
Here, 4 fashion designers share the quarantine recipes they are cooking at home right now.
Laura Kim, co-creative director, Monse and Oscar de la Renta
“One of my favorite things to serve alongside meat is braised Savoy cabbage, Kim tells Vogue. “Wonderful things happen when you cook this bitter vegetable with butter and let all the flavors come out. This little dish is really a variation of serving meat with cabbage—it’s all wrapped together in a pretty parcel. Serve it on its own, as a weekend lunch, or as an appetizer for a decadent feast.”
1 head Savoy cabbage
Unsalted butter, for the pan
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 onion, thinly sliced
2 carrots, finely diced
2/3 pound/300 g ground beef
2/3 pound/300 g good-quality pork sausage meat
1 handful of chopped bacon
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
2 to 3 sprigs of thyme
1 bay leaf
½ teaspoon ground allspice
Fine sea salt and freshly ground pepper
½ (7-ounce/200-g) cup fresh whole tomatoes, crushed, with their juices
5-6 stalks of celery
1 large egg
Bring a pot of salted water to a boil. Meanwhile, core the cabbage leaves and separate them, discarding any coarse outer ones. Cook the leaves in boiling water for 8 minutes. Drain and set aside to cool.
Grease the bottom and sides of a deep 7-inch/18-cm soufflé dish or charlotte mold with butter. Put a large pretty cabbage leaf, domed side down, in the dish. Top with another leaf and continue arranging the leaves one on top of another until the entire base and sides are covered. You won’t use all of the leaves at this point (reserve enough for 4 or 5 layers).
Heat the olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Cook the onion, carrots, and celery until softened, 4 minutes. Add the ground beef, sausage, bacon, garlic, thyme, bay leaf, spice and season with salt and pepper to taste and cook, stirring once or twice, until the meat is browned.
Pour in the fresh tomatoes, with their juices, and simmer until nearly all the liquid has been absorbed, about 5 minutes. Transfer the mixture to a bowl and let cool.
Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.
When mixture has cooled, discard the thyme and bay leaf. Add the egg and mix well.
Put a layer of about ½ inch/ 1 cm of the meat in the cabbage-lined dish and top with a cabbage leaf. Repeat until you’ve used all of the meat and filled the dish, about 4 layers. Finish with a final layer of cabbage, making sure to tuck in the leaf on all sides.
Bake for 40 minutes. To unmold, invert a plate over the soufflé dish, flip the plate and dish, and remove the mold. Serve immediately, cut into slices. Pair it with Red Wine – my favorite at the moment is The Tri Blend from The Vice Wine.
$145.00, OUR PLACE
$10.00, SUR LA TABLE
$98.00, TORY BURCH
Phillip Lim, creative director, 3.1 Phillip Lim
Phillip Lim shares with Vogue one of his favorite recipes directly from his cookbook, More Than Our Bellies. “This humble recipe is a game-changer. I love the combination of textures with the crunchy exterior and juicy insides. Super-fast and easy to make, the blend of savory, spicy, salty flavors results in mouth-watering goodness.”
Salt & Pepper Shrimp
½ lbs of shrimp with head & shell on
2 medium-sized garlic, minced
1 bundle of spring onion, chopped
½ lb of shishito peppers cut diagonally
Roasted rice powder
Light soy sauce or seasoning soy sauce
4 cups of vegetable oil
To prep the shrimp: rinse in cold water. Using scissors, butterfly the body of the shrimp (keep head and shell on). Discard the black artery (poop).
Coat the shrimp with roasted rice powder and a pinch of salt. Mix well.
Set a wok in medium-high heat and add in vegetable oil. Wait until the oil is hot and place coated shrimp in the oil to lightly fry, then flip the shrimp over. Remove shrimp once it is crispy (about 1 minute) and place onto paper towel to drain the oil.
Clean the wok. Set the wok again to medium heat.
Add oil and wait until the oil is hot.
Add shallots and garlic, stir fry until light-golden brown. Add spring onions and shishito peppers, stir, then toss in the fried shrimp and add a little seasoning sauce to your taste. Stir to evenly distribute the melody of flavors. Serve & enjoy.
$35.00, APPLE BOOKS
Wes Gordon, creative director, Carolina Herrera
“I love making my grandmother’s oatmeal cookies,” Gordon tells Vogue. “This is a family recipe that has been passed down from generation to generation that my grandmother and mother have followed for years. I still have the original, handwritten copy of the recipe. It’s incredibly easy to prepare and the cookies can taste different every time, depending on the chosen ingredients. This recipe is 100% customizable, you can add some cinnamon, ginger powder or lemon zest, it really depends on what you’re craving!”
¾ cup flour
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon soda (baking soda)
1 stick butter (½ cup softened)
½ cup brown sugar
½ cup of white sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 ½ cup oats
Combine first 3 dry ingredients.
Cream butter, sugars, and egg.
Add dry ingredients & vanilla.
Bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes.
Use parchment paper on cookie sheets so they don’t brown on bottom.
$38.00, FINNISH DESIGN SHOP
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Alejandra Alonso Rojas, creative director
“The Spanish omelet is a classic,” Alejandra says. “We would always have it on Fridays at home growing up. You can have it at room temperature or from the fridge so I would grab a piece after school, a bite for dinner or after I came home at 3 a.m. from a party with my friends, that’s when it tasted the best!”
Tortilla Espanola / Spanish Omelet
½ cup olive oil
4 medium-sized potatoes
Salt to taste
Peel the potatoes, wash them and slice them in half. My special trick is the mandolin – use it to slice the potatoes. The mandolin will allow all the potatoes to fry evenly and you’ll save so much time!
Heat the oil in a nonstick large sized pan. Once the pan is heated, begin to fry the potatoes. I use the pan cover to cook them faster and I break them in little pieces as they cook. This will allow the potatoes to mix nicer with the egg later. Fry until the potatoes are a bit golden.
Drain the oil from the pan. Leave the potatoes in the pan for at least 5-7 minutes, to rest.
Beat eggs with salt to taste. Pour the potatoes into the egg mixture, and mix well. Let the mixture sit for 5 minutes, so the potatoes soak up all of the egg.
Preheat a pan with a tsp. of olive oil. Pour the potatoes and egg mixture into the pan, using a spatula to make sure the borders do not stick to the pan.
When you see the borders a bit cooked, nice yellow/ golden color, it’s time to flip.
To flip the omelet, I typically grab a plate a bit larger than the pan, turn off the stove, put the plate over the pan and grab the pan by the handle with cooking gloves. Put the other hand on the place and turn it.
Cook the other side for a couple of minutes, as it should not be over cooked.
To remove from the pan, place a clean plate on top of the tortilla and flip again onto the plate
Serve and enjoy!
$100.00, POTTERY BARN
Originally Appeared on Vogue