Monday, October 26, 2009

Remix 1

Sometimes, even when you have good ingredients, you feel the need to switch it up. Riff on old, good tunes, as it were. And here, I can't even take credit for the old, good tune! I really like the fresh ravioli made by Smith Meadows, I just purchased their green garlic pesto (WOW, garlicky), and topped it off with local Blue Ridge Dairy whole-milk ricotta- it was a meal made in Farmer's Market heaven.
Then a couple days later, knowing that the fresh pasta lasts only so long, I tried something that took a little more thought, but still used what I had: 3/4 of a tomato that was still good, and... see, this is what happens when you wait too long and don't take notes. I think I added a little bit of the pesto, warmed the tomato pieces on the stove, and then combined with the ravioli. No fresh herbs. Hmm. I do remember it tasted good though!

Stay tuned for remix 2: galette v. galette! Oh, and my not-so-success with okra. But it garnered me a new word: mucilaginous!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Harmony in Pinks and Purples

The beautiful jeweled tones of what was purchased last week: eggplants, native 'heirloom' apples, and a couple purple peppers

As usually happens, after being uninspired for a week or so, I caught a wave of enthusiasm for cooking again. This time the accelerant used was a post by Pink of Perfection on Crustless Quiche, which she declared not even really a recipe, but which I declared Awesome.
She made hers with portobello mushrooms, frozen spinach, an onion, and some cheese, and I riffed on that with beet greens, an onion, and feta, the only plausible cheese in the kitchen. It was a great use of the extra 18 eggs I'd gotten for free (!) at the farmer's market. They were 'first lay' eggs, which are rather small, but still good, by all means. And you know what else? Not refrigerated. I think once they are refrigerated, you can't leave them out, but otherwise, you're ok. But don't quote me on that. Let me know if any readers think something different.
Before: all scrambled-looking and humble...And After, cooked solidly through, easily cut, savory, and healthy (I think).

Monday, October 19, 2009

Feeling Stuffed, anyone?

Looked a little soupy, but came out ok...

It's not even Thanksgiving yet, but I thought I would tackle something stuffed. For some reason, stuffed things food-wise make me a bit uneasy- not unlike souffle, but in a different way. Stuffed peppers, stuffed mushrooms, all these little things seem to be overshooting the mark of good, plain food. But I hadn't tried it, so I decided not to knock it. And the timing was perfect for using the last of the zucchini purchased from the Farmer's Market at Dupont. For the Simply Recipes recipe I used, look here. I downsized it to the 2 large zucchini I had a bit haphazardly, and used ground pork instead of ground turkey, since that's what I had in the freezer. That may have contributed to the soupiness...
I took it to a fun friend lunch of a Saturday, and we feasted! Kim cooked up a frittata out of thin air, showed me how an asparagus salad can be done by blanching, and of course we had a dessert plate as well (but all leftovers and bits-to-hand, so no photo). Instead, you get the treat of seeing a photo of the mug into which I tried to pour the extra cooking liquid (to save it for later of course): FAIL. Ah well.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Few Late Film Entries

From the Boston trip: while not food-related, still entertaining.

A clip of the parade I landed in the middle of in the North End (for St. Anthony's festival!).

And a clip of the turndown service at the Ritz, where I stayed for one night! Chi-to-tha-chi...

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Monday, October 5, 2009


Exciting: I made my very first buttery, flaky crust (just like they show in the magazines) pie crust from scratchy-scratch, even going to the lengths of bypassing the food processor and using a plain old FORK to mix the butter in (only took about 40 minutes). The result:
That was a week or so ago. Last night's endeavor was this: Chocolate Zucchini Cake, once again from In Praise of Leftovers. She is SO good. :-) I was working my way through that list of wannabe recipes again, and this one was great. I wanted cookies, but knew that I had no self-control to keep those in the house, so... I went for cake. Only responsible thing to do, right? I brought a third of the sheet in to work this morning. Feedback from coworker was: "not as rich as regular chocolate cake" "lighter" "can't taste the zucchini" hmm... an interesting experiment, and a pretty healthy one. Here in this photo is the point at which there was no return: had just dumped 2 cups of grated zucchini into all that chocolatey goodness. This is also proof that the zucchini was actually incorporated, for any who might doubt, due to its deliciousness. :-)
But how could this dish HELP but be delicious? Topped as it is with dark chocolate (my alteration) chips and toasted walnuts (and a pinch of espresso powder, since the directions omit when to put it in, and I forgot until the end!- don't let it happen to you!), I mean really. Finished product, with scavenger at work...