Turn David Kirkland

David Kirkland is the chef-owner of Turn. 

While doing their part to maintain social distance, home cooks everywhere are honing their skills in the kitchen. Feast consulted with some of St. Louis' finest chefs and business owners for their best advice on how to make easy, wholesome meals using simple pantry staples. Find out how to make the most of your groceries in this Q&A series, which outlines some pro tips for creating nutritious and comforting from-scratch meals, snacks and more.

David Kirkland is the chef-owner of Turn, a local ingredient-focused Midtown brunch and American comfort food cafe that debuted in 2017. Turn is currently accepting online orders for carryout and curbside pickup. Reservation requests for limited dine-in seating are also available. For details and the current menu, visit Turn's website.

What are some of the most useful ingredients you like to keep stocked in your home kitchen? Balsamic vinegar, olive oil, kosher salt, flour, sugars (brown and white), garlic, sesame oil and seeds, quinoa, rice and couscous.

Do you have a secret weapon spice or ingredient that's always on hand? Smoked paprika and saffron.

Do you like to listen to music when you cook? What's in your current rotation? Music is a huge part of my creativity in the kitchen. Lately, I've been listening to a lot of Erykah Badu and Idris Elba Defected DJ set.

What advice can you offer home cooks on how to make the most of their fresh produce this summer? Keep it simple; don't overdo it. I grill a lot of fresh vegetables and finish them with balsamic drizzle. Tomatoes love fresh basil. Zucchini love mint and cucumber. The fresher, the better.

What are some of your go-to brunch foods to make at home? Pancakes with a fruit compote. Peaches are amazing right now! Baked eggs with fresh herbs and veggies.

Can you share a recipe for a quick and comforting meal idea? Absolutely! Try this basil-zucchini frittata or honey serrano cornbread.

Basil-Zucchini Frittata

Serves | 8 |

  • 12 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cup goat cheese crumbles
  • 1 cup zucchini, diced
  • 1/2 cup onion, diced
  • 1/2 cup basil, julienned
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper

| Preparation | Preheat oven to 350°F. In a large mixing bowl or stand mixer, whisk eggs, 1 cup goat cheese, salt and pepper together until goat cheese is thoroughly blend. Sauté onions and zucchini in 12 or 10-inch non-stick sauté pan with a tablespoon of vegetable oil. Add egg mixture to sautéed veggies. Keep turning the eggs from the sides to the middle until fully scrambled, fold in basil with remaining goat cheese, place skillet into oven and bake for 25-30 minutes until frittata puffs up and is brown on top. Flip onto plate or platter and serve warm or room temperature.

Honey-Serrano Cornbread

  • 2 cups blue corn flour
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 Tbsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 4 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 3 serrano peppers, thinly sliced and seeded

| Preparation | Preheat oven to 400°F. Lightly butter or spray muffin pan. Sift the dry ingredients together to blend. Stir in all the rest of the wet ingredients. Then, fold in the jalapeños. Stir just until everything is combined, don't overmix. Baked for about 25 minutes, or until risen and golden.