Sunday, October 23, 2011

andalusian gazpacho/cold tomato soup with corn guacamole

Gazpacho is a little tricky. You might think that you could just throw some peppers and onions and garlic and bread and a whole bunch of tomatoes in the blender, let it chill in the fridge for a couple of hours and call it dinner. But if you're not careful, that's when you get bland watery gazpacho, or a pulpy granular mash with very little liquid, or gazpacho so potently pungent from raw garlic and onions that you'll be scrubbing the taste off your tongue for days. With something so simple as a raw soup, it's extremely important that you strike a nice balance with your ingredients, because it's the simplest things that are easiest to mess up.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

spaghetti limone/bacon wrapped pork loin

So as I mentioned in my post on zucchini, I visited my Aunt Elise and Uncle Ed when I went out to California this summer. In addition to the aforementioned vegetable, I put together quite a nice dinner, if I do say so myself.

First we had a garlic and sage crusted pork loin. That is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a big old pork loin generously seasoned and rubbed with olive oil, garlic and fresh sage. Further gilding the lily, as per Aunt Elise's excellent suggestion, I wrapped that sucker in bacon before searing it off in a frying pan and finishing it off in the oven. Gotta love that pork on pork action.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

caldo verde

My friend Tony suggested I make a caldo verde soup with all my food co-op kale. My only regret was that it took so long to follow his advice.

My family came over for dinner after work one night back in July, right before I left for a glorious two and a half weeks of vacation in the California sun. I thought that this soup would be super easy and ready in a heartbeat. Unfortunately, the potatoes decided to be difficult and take two hour to cook, which was bizarre, but other than that this dinner came together quite nicely.

Caldo verde is a Portuguese soup or stew, and I used this recipe from Mario Batali. I spent the night before simmering a big pot of chicken stock and getting all my potatoes and kale chopped up and ready to go, so the next night all I had to do was chop and sautee the onion and garlic, and then add the broth and potatoes and let that pot go to work.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

strawberry sour cream pie

I made this for the 4th of July, if you couldn't guess based on the patriotic table cloth. For the second year running, I went up to my friend Kristina's house in Winthrop, Massachusetts. Her mother has amazing patriotic decorations, and this table cloth only scratches the surface.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

extra flakey scallion pancakes!

I'm not going to lie. I feel pretty good about posting a recipe for scallion pancakes. It's like, totally unexpected, right? Not that I think my cooking is in a rut or anything, obviously. I'm just proud of making something Asian that's not a stir fry!

The recipe came from Serious Eats's alway informative but often overly involved food lab series.

Monday, October 3, 2011

mint pea pesto

So this I was like pretty proud of. My dad came over and helped me install a window herb garden, which, by the way is totally dying on me. What the hell man? I water them once a day, shouldn't that be enough? WHY IS ALL MY THYME AND BASIL DYING ON MEEEEEE?


What I was saying is that my dad came over to help me install a window herb garden, and because I am not a totally ungrateful daughter, I made him lunch. I saw this recipe for "pea pesto" on smitten kitchen and while I didn't entirely love the sound of it, it did give me the spark of inspiration I needed to make this dish.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

random stuff to do with zucchini

As anyone who has ever planted them or joined a farm share knows, the bounty of summer squash and zucchini never seems to end. Luckily, my csa seems to have moved on this season, but there was a month or two there where it was pretty dicey. Laura made a LOT of zucchini bread, but for some reason I stuck with more of the typical veggie side dish type thing.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

savory bread puddings

That is my take on something that the smitten kitchen called scalloped tomatoes with croutons, but really turned out more like a savory bread pudding.