Eberly Chef Jo Chan Shares Delicious Recipes to Make at Home
Make spaghetti with red sauce, veggie hash and a vegetable stir fry like a pro
By Aaron Parsley
As the Executive Chef at Eberly, Jo Chan has more time on her hands than she’s used to due to the coronavirus pandemic and the closure of Austin restaurants. Now that she’s no longer in kitchen of the stylish South Austin eatery and preparing signature dishes like roasted carrots, squash ravioli, Green Circle chicken breast and Diver sea scallops for customers, she’s getting back to basics at home like so many people in Austin and across the world.
With experience at some of New York City’s most famous restaurants like Nobu Fifty Seven and Barbuto, Chan began her tenure at Eberly in early 2018. We asked Chan how she’s spending her time, stocking her kitchen and what she’s cooking at home. She’s shared three delicious recipes for spaghetti with red sauce, veggie hash and vegetable stir fry you can make while social distancing at home.
When Austin’s restaurants open up again, Chan looks forward to cooking for you at Eberly. Let her know how your meals turned out when you pay her a visit!
How are you spending your free time these days?
It is obviously incredibly strange to have so much free time. Since I became a chef, I don’t know that I’ve ever had so much time to be around the house or been able to cook so many meals at home. I’m spending a lot of my time cooking and catching up with loved ones.
How are you getting ingredients?
There are a few local farms that we partner with at Eberly that I’ve been frequenting for my own personal use at home. I’m picking up curbside from the big grocery stores just like everyone else, and also frequenting some local neighborhood smaller stores that aren’t usually in my routine.
What is your advice and encouragement for non-chefs cooking from home these days?
Don’t feel discouraged or daunted by cooking at home! Cooking at home for me is about comfort. I never want the preparation or execution of the meals to take me away from quality time with my loved ones, so at home, I keep my meals incredibly simple.
Buy things from the grocery store (especially the produce section) that are going to be versatile in multiple recipes. Don’t be stingy when building up your pantry. Items that have a longer shelf life, like soy sauce, vinegars, oils, etc. are going to help you build up flavors in your cooking. Don’t skimp on them!
Don’t buy a lot of gadgets or tools that promise easier preparations. In my home kitchen, I have one good 8-inch chef’s knife, one Boos Block cutting board, two cast iron pans, one non-stick pan, a couple of small to large Dutch ovens and a few basic cooking tools. The point is, you don’t need a lot of tools to execute great meals. You just need tools that you are comfortable with and are durable.
Be smart about your prep time. I like reserving a bit of pasta sauce from dinner to use for making hash with eggs in the morning. This adds flavor to your next meal and saves you time. If you are cutting veggies for dinner, cut some extra ones and put them in a container to use for breakfast or lunch the next day. Maximize your efforts and save time!
You’ve written up three recipes for Tribeza readers. They look delicious! What can you tell us about why you chose to share these dishes?
Nothing comforts me more than a tried and true bowl of spaghetti with good red sauce. There aren’t any magic ingredients to it, just good cooking techniques and time. When I make this, I usually do a double recipe of the sauce and throw some in the freezer for easy meals in the future.
Veggie hash for breakfast is a great way to get rid of extra vegetables you may have lying around. If you add a little red sauce from dinner last night, it’s even better! This is a hearty breakfast that doesn’t take a lot of time and helps you clean out your fridge. Serve it with tortillas or toast.
Veggie stir fry and pretty much anything with rice takes me back to my childhood. There wasn’t a single meal served without it when I was growing up. I always have good dark soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and fish sauce in my fridge. Just like the hash, this is a great way to sneak a ton of veggies into a meal and is incredibly quick to put together.
2 russet potatoes, large diced
1 yellow onion, large diced
1 green bell pepper, large diced
1 zucchini, large diced
2 tbsp. curly parsley, chopped
1 cup red sauce (from spaghetti recipe)
2 tbsp. olive oil
4 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
- Heat olive oil in a large cast iron skillet. Add potatoes and season with salt. When potatoes have started browning, move the cast iron into the oven and allow potatoes to fully cook.
- Once potatoes are tender, place the cast iron back on the stove at medium heat and add the remaining veggies.
- Add red sauce and stir all ingredients together. Season with salt and pepper.
- Crack whole eggs over the mixture and place the cast iron back into the oven.
- Cook until eggs are set to your liking. Top with parsley and serve!
Spaghetti with Red Sauce
1 yellow onion, medium diced
10 cloves garlic, minced fine
6 oz. tomato paste
14.5 oz. tomato sauce
14.5 oz. diced tomatoes, canned
3 tbsp. Cabernet vinegar
5 tbsp. olive oil
1 tsp. dried oregano
½ tsp. dried thyme
1 bunch curly parsley, chopped
¼ cup grated parmesan
1 lb. dry spaghetti
- In a large pot (I like a Le Creuset 8-quart Dutch oven), sweat garlic and onions in olive oil on medium heat until translucent. Add a pinch of salt to help extract the water from the onions and begin seasoning the dish.
- Add tomato paste and allow to cook at medium heat until mixture turns into a deep brick red. This is the most critical part of the recipe because it allows for the deepest flavors to develop.
- Add Cabernet vinegar. Use this liquid to pull up any fond or brown bits that have formed on the bottom of the pot.
- Add tomato sauce, diced tomatoes, oregano and thyme. Stir and reduce heat to low.
- Allow sauce to simmer for 1 hour, stirring occasionally. You want to see steam rising from the pot. This indicates the evaporation of water and the concentrating of the tomato flavor.
- Cook spaghetti or any other pasta of your choice in boiling water. Shorten the recommended cooking time on the label by 1-2 minutes, and be sure to reserve ½ cup of pasta cooking liquid.
- Add pasta cooking liquid and cooked pasta into your sauce mixture and allow the pasta to finish cooking in the sauce. This allows the sauce to be absorbed into the pasta and gives you a more concentrated flavor.
- Top with grated parmesan and parsley and serve!
Veggie Stir Fry
1 yellow onion, diced
2 green bell pepper, diced
2 zucchini, large diced
1 large carrot, large diced
1 cup snap peas
4 cloves garlic, minced fine
2 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 tbsp. dark soy sauce
2 tbsp. rice wine vinegar
1 tsp. fish sauce
2 cups rice, cooked
- Heat vegetable oil in a large cast iron skillet. Add zucchini and carrots and allow to cook until tender, stirring occasionally.
- Add onions, bell pepper, snap peas, and garlic and cook until all vegetables are tender.
- Transfer vegetables to a large bowl and season with dark soy sauce, rice wine vinegar, and fish sauce.
- Serve over rice!