Flirting (Cooking) with a Friend

By now you know how much joy I get from sharing my kitchen with loved ones. To me, life comes together over the stove and bonds are formed at the table. It’s why I love to have my many talented friends and family come into my kitchen to prepare some of the best food they know how to make.  On Tuesday, August 7th, I had the pleasure of filming a Facebook Live segment with a longtime friend of mine, Chef Mark Strausman.

Chef Mark Strausman Stage Set_Pamela Morgan_Flirting with Flavors

The Stage is Set for a Successful Shoot!

Bringing Freds Home!

Mark is the legend behind one of the most popular restaurants, not just in a department store, but in the country! There are currently four locations and another being built and three of them are outside of New York City! I’m speaking, of course, about Freds at Barneys New York. And Mark’s released his cookbook of the same name, just months ago. So, in an effort to celebrate this achievement and to sneakily get a home-cooked Freds meal, I had Mark show me how to make a couple of my favorite Freds dishes. Here’s the video:

An Elegant and Easy Weeknight Meal

What I love about both of these dishes is just how easy they are to put together! This doesn’t need to take up hours of your time, and if you pop the crisp in the oven as you start getting your chicken ready, it’ll be finished by the time you’re done eating your dinner!

Chicken Paillards with Tomato, Arugula, & Red Onion Salad
Chicken Paillards with Tomato, Arugula, & Red Onion Salad
Print Recipe Chicken Paillards with Tomato, Arugula, & Red Onion Salad
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 5 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Course: Chicken, Comfort, Fall, Mediterranean, Salad, Spring, Summer, Winter
Servings: 2 people


Chicken Paillards

  • 2 (7-ounce) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • 2 tablespoons Freds Herb Mixture (see link in recipe notes)
  • 2 Drizzle extra-virgin olive oil


  • 2 cups baby arugula
  • 10 cherry tomatoes, halved (or 2 plum tomatoes, quartered, seeds and center removed, then cut lengthwise into 1/4-inch strips)
  • 4 (1/4-inch-thick) slices red onion
  • 2 Kosher salt
  • 2 Freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Madison Avenue Dressing (see link in recipe notes)
  • 1 lemon, halved, for garnish


  • Pound the paillards, in between sheets of plastic, according to the instructions above. Peel back the plastic, one side at a time, and sprinkle each paillard with a tablespoon of herb mizture and drizzle with olive oil. Keep refrigerated in the plastic wrap for up to 24 hours, until you're ready to cook.
  • Place the arugula, tomatoes, and onion in a mixing bowl. Place the dressing close at hand but do not add to the salad yet.
  • Unless you have two skillets, you'll need to cook the paillards one at a time. They cook quickly, so the first one will stay warm while you cook the second. Take one paillard out of the plastic wrap and sprinkle it on both sides with salt and pepper. Heat the skillet over medium heat until it's very hot. To check if it's ready, drizzle a drop of water into the pan. If it sizzles and balls up, the pan is ready. Briefly turn off the heat as you quickly remove the paillard from the plastic. Flip it into the hot pan, making sure it's flat in the pan, then turn the heat back to high. Cook until the top side starts to look cooked, and then use tongs to turn it over. If the paillard is very thin, turn off the heat, but leave it in the pan to finish cooking. If it's a bit thicker and needs more time, keep the heat on until the piece is firm, but do not overcook. Use a large spatula to transfer the paillard to an oversize dinner plate. Repeat with the second paillard.
  • Quickly add the dressing to the salad, toss together, and then place in the center of each paillard. Garnish with half a lemon, and serve immediately.

Local Blueberry Crisp
Local Blueberry Crisp
Print Recipe Local Blueberry Crisp
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 1 hour
Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes
Course: Comfort, Dessert, Summer, Vegetarian
Servings: 6 people


  • 1 tablespoon butter


  • 6 cups blueberries
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons dry red wine
  • 2 Pinch kosher salt


  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 cup rolled oats or Swiss muesli
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into small bits


  • Preheat oven to 350˚F. Use 1 Tablespoon of butter to grease the inside of a 12-inch baking dish.


  • Combine all the filling ingredients in a large mixing bowl and toss together well. Transfer to the prepared baking dish and spread evenly.


  • In a separate bowl, mix together the flour, brown sugar, oats, cinnamon, and ginger. Rub the butter into the mixture until incorporated evenly and the mixture resembles little pebbles.
  • Spread the topping evenly over the filling. Cover with foil and bake for 45 minutes (if you don't cover them it will take a little longer to bake), until the filling is beginning to send up thick bubbles. Remove the foil and continue baking until the top is golden brown and crispy, about 15 minutes longer.
  • Serve hot or cold with vanilla ice cream, if desired.

I Showed You Mine and You Showed Me Yours!

In addition to showing you how to make a couple of MY favorite dishes in your own kitchen, we wanted you to share with us some of YOUR favorite Freds meals for a chance to win a signed cookbook by the icon himself! Congratulations to our winners:

  • Sally Swallow and her love of crab cakes!
  • Peter Pierce who appreciates a good french fry when he eats it!
  • And Adrienne Cooper who loves the NY classic bagels!

Thanks for a Terrific Tuesday!

It takes a team to put these things together, and I appreciate all of the help I received on the day of the shoot!

My hair and makeup was perfected by Julie Corinne Morgan, my gorgeous flowers were provided by Betty-Baines Saum from Flower Porn, who wins best company name!

I’m gracious for the stellar ingredients that made our tastebuds dance, as they always do. Many thanks to Monini Olive Oil for flying in some amazing EVOO, direct from Italy! You know how I feel about that liquid gold!

The kitchen and videos would not have worked as well without our sous chef for the day, my former assistant, the amazing Edouard Massih! Hire him for your next event or photo shoot!

Without the men behind the cameras this whole thing would have just been for my husband Michael, which he’d probably prefer–but you would miss out! So, many thanks to my producer and director Rafael Feldman and his DP, Michael LaVoie from Sohomuse.

Finally, thanks to my branding consultant who helps bring it all together, Jade Dressler.

And another final thank you to my friend, Nicole Miller who provided my fabulous off- the- shoulder red blouse.

More to come?

If you noticed a couple of photos with a different colored top in some of my photos, the good news is that it’s because we filmed another video with a third recipe from Mark that we’ll be releasing soon! So be sure you’re subscribed to our newsletter and our YouTube channel for all of the latest information!

Stay Tuned!