Thursday, July 05, 2007

The Pursuit of Happiness

I broke my toe. It wouldn't bother me so much if market day wasn't coming up so soon. But for now I'm just staying off of my foot. Now for the rundown.

Sunday Dinner: Lots of Vegetables

Tomato and Avocado Squash Terrine with Mint Gelée,Olive Oil and Pomegranate Molasses; Bulghur, Lollo Rossa Lettuce and Basil with Pistachios and Sumac
Avocado squash is like a denser, sweeter, drier zucchini. I threw the squash slices into a hot cast-iron pan for a minute to soften them up. I hadn't planned on the mint gelée, and it probably wasn't necessary. But it was interesting, and I had to try making it at least once. But it was good, and the salad too.

Rocambole Garlic, Garlic Scape and Spinach Soup with a Poached Egg, Chickpea Flour Dumpling, Sheep's Milk Yogurt.

This was good. Rocambole is one of the varieties of hardneck garlic. This garlic comes from Keith Stewart's farm, where a friend of mine is now working. It is the best garlic I have ever had. Great texture, some sweetness, just enough heat. It was perfect in this. And I poached the egg in the soup, which was an added bonus. The little dumpling was made of chickpea flour, more of the sheep yogurt and egg white. I browned it in butter and then finished it in the soup.
And I ate the rest of the semifreddo with some of the stewed sour cherries. It was even better than the raspberries.

Monday Breakfast: Pan de Maiz y Flor de Calabaza

Cornmeal Oven Pancake with Squash Flowers and Shallots. This was delicious. I was hoping I could make something that wasn't a pancake, but I couldn't help it. Plus it had lard in it.

Monday Dinner: Real Sesame Noodles

Soba with Sesame Butter, Wax Beans, Shallots, Shishito Peppers, Sesame Seeds and Ground Peanuts. I don't think I have ever had sesame noodles that were truly sesame noodles. I can understand. Peanut butter is more readily available for one thing, and a slightly more accessible taste than a ton of sesame paste. But I liked it.

Tuesday Breakfast: Butter, Pancakes, and a Revelation

Random Ingredient Cakes. Ground Rolled Oats, Whole Wheat, Barley Malt, Raisin Puree, Nutmeg, and the Buttermilk from...

the butter that I made. I saw the bottle of heavy cream in the fridge. So I decided to make butter. It was so much easier than I thought it would be, and I thought that it would be pretty easy. I used just a bowl and a whisk, and it all went very quickly. I think it may have been related to the fact I was listening to a White House press conference and channeling my aggression into the whisking. But man was it good on the pancakes. I made approximately 3 Tbsps, and I still have a little piece. And now I know.
Also I am in the early stages of development on a new feature, the Random Pancake Generator. More to come.

Wednesday All-American Dinner: Off The Grid.
It was the Fourth of July, so I had to eat a hamburger. And I had some NY State Grass-Fed Ground Beef in the freezer.

I made the hamburger buns from a mishmash of advice from recipes I found online, but used lard instead of margarine, because margarine is gross. The burgers were seasoned with salt and pepper and cooked on a grillpan. The potato chips were russets fried in canola and grapeseed oil with sea salt, somked paprika, cayenne, and a little sugar. Lollo Rossa lettuce, tomato, grilled Shishito peppers. They were handsdown the best burgers I have ever eaten. Ever. And not just because of the labor involved. The meat had a nice amount of fat, they were packed very loosely, the texture of the bun was great, and it had character(without going in the direction of sweetness like those brioche buns so many hamburger joints are using). Fantastic. No condiments. Roommate Mike said they were the best he had ever eaten as well.
Plus many Rolling Rocks and fireworks.

Thursday: Broke Toe Pesto

I needed something simple that wouldn't require too much standing. So I made pesto before the basil went bad. Here it is with some farmer's maccaroni and grated avocado squash. Whaddya want from me?


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