June 4, 2018

Try These Local Takes On Classic Recipes

By Avery Kleinman

The Salted Fino Rickey,  created by Suzy Critchlow 
of D.C. bar Columbia Room, is a new twist on the nineteenth century Rickey cocktail.

The Salted Fino Rickey, created by Suzy Critchlow of D.C. bar Columbia Room, is a new twist on the nineteenth century Rickey cocktail.

Across the region, chefs and bartenders are scouring antique recipe books for inspiration for their menus. Cooking styles and access to ingredients have evolved dramatically over the past century, offering the chance for creative, contemporary twists on classic creations.

We’ve gathered recipes from some of the local chefs and bartenders behind the trend — who fortunately also know when not to mess with a good thing.

First up, a cocktail created here in Washington back in the 1880s, the Rickey:

Salted Fino Rickey

by Suzy Critchlow, Head Bartender at Columbia Room

fino sherry, salted lime oleo, lime juice, cucumber, sparkling mineral water, served in highball glass with a cucumber ribbon & spent lime husk 

2 oz Tio Pepe Fino Sherry

0.5 oz Fresh Cucumber Juice

1 oz Salted Lime Oleo Saccharum

Juice of half a lime

Sparkling Mineral Water

Squeeze juice of half a lime into highball glass, then add fino, cucumber, and oleo. Save lime husk. Gently mix with a spoon, adding ice and stirring to integrate and chill ingredients. Top with sparkling mineral water, jiggling with spoon to blend in sparkling water.

Garnish with cucumber ribbon curled around inside surface area of glass and spent lime husk perched on top of ice.

Also known as a “desperation,” or “make-do” pie, the vinegar pie was created out of necessity during the 1930s, when access to traditional, sweet filling ingredients was scarce.

Depression Era Vinegar Pie 

by Jake Addeo, Executive Chef at Occidental Grill & Seafood

Vinegar pies were first created during the Depression, when access to traditional fillings was scarce. Kat Selvocki

Pie Crust

1 cup All Purpose flour

1 pinch Salt

¼ cup Sugar

3 ounces Butter, softened

1 Egg Combine the flour, salt, and sugar together, and sift into a large mixing bowl. Add butter and work it into the dry ingredients with your fingers until the mixture resembles a coarse meal and is well incorporated.

Add the egg and knead the dough until it is smooth in texture, folding it over itself in order to give the crust a layered, flaky texture. Let it rest for 10 minutes.

Transfer the dough to a floured surface, and roll it into a circle 12-13 inches in diameter and about 1/8-inch thick. Lightly flour the top of the crust and carefully roll it onto the rolling pin. Unroll it over a 9-inch pie pan, crimp the edges, and dot the base with a knife 8-10 times. Refrigerate until ready to use.

Pie Filling

4 Large Eggs

2 tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar

1.5 cups Sugar

4 ounces Butter, melted

.5 teaspoon  Cinnamon

1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Pinch Salt

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Beat the eggs, vinegar, sugar, melted butter, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt until well combined and slightly thickened. Pour custard mixture into an unbaked pie crust and bake for 45 minutes, or until a medium-brown crust has formed on top and the center is set.

Let cool before serving.

The slaw dog is famous throughout the Shenandoah Valley and Appalachia. According to legend, slaw was first placed atop a hot dog in Charleston, West Virginia, in the 1930s.

My Version of a Slaw Dog

by Edward Lee, Culinary Director at Succotash

Excerpted from “Buttermilk Graffiti” by Edward Lee (Artisan Books). Copyright © 2018.

Makes 8 slaw dogs

Don’t expect me to give you a newfangled artisan version of a slaw dog. Some things don’t need to be tinkered with. Also, in an age where everything is uber-organic and overscrutinized, it’s nice sometimes just to indulge in something that is store-bought and simple. By all means,use organic beef franks and even brioche hot dog buns, if you want. But this version, made withprocessed ingredients, which I normally don’t cook with, is what reminds me of West Virginia in all its faults and glory.


1 tablespoon canola oil

1 pound 85% lean ground beef

1 sweet onion, such as Vidalia, finely diced

5 garlic cloves, minced

1/4 cup tomato paste

2 1/2 tablespoons chili powder

1 1/2 tablespoons ground cumin

2 1/4 teaspoons salt

1 1/2 cups beer

1 cup water


1/2 head cabbage, cored and finely chopped

3 tablespoons sugar

3 tablespoons mayonnaise, preferably Duke’s

1 tablespoon distilled white vinegar

1 1/2 teaspoons salt

8 all-beef hot dogs

8 hot dog buns

3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted

Yellow mustard

1 sweet onion, such as Vidalia, finely chopped

To make the chili:

In a Dutch oven or other heavy pot, heat the canola oil over medium-highheat. Add the ground beef and onion and cook, stirring, until the beef is browned and the onion has wilted, 6 to 8 minutes. Add the garlic, tomato paste, chili powder, cumin, and salt, stir well,reduce the heat to medium, and cook for 5 minutes, or until the vegetables soften. Add the beer and water, bring to a gentle simmer, and cook for about an hour, until most of the liquid has evaporated and the flavors have merged together. Once the chili is done, turn off the heat and let it rest at room temperature.

Meanwhile, to make the slaw:

Put the cabbage in a bowl, add the sugar, mayonnaise, vinegar, and salt, and stir well. Cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Stir again just before using. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil. Drop in the hot dogs and cook for 4 minutes. Meanwhile, open up the hot dog buns and brush the insides with the melted butter. Add them buttered-side down to a large hot skillet (work in batches, or use two skillets) and cook until warmed and lightly toasted, about 3 minutes.

Reheat the chili until hot. Drain the slaw and stir well. B rush the toasted hot dog buns with a little mustard. Drain the hot dogs and add to the buns. Brush a little more mustard over the hot dogs. Spoon some chili onto each hot dog and top with a little slaw and a light scattering of diced onion. Arrange on plates and serve.

Tune into the Kojo Nnamdi Show on Tuesday, July 5 to hear from local chefs who are cooking classic dishes with contemporary twists.