June 2008


R. is out of town visiting family, and I’m all by myself with a whole farm share all to myself.  With her away, I’m free to try out some wacky stuff, as there’s nobody around to pay for my failed experiments.

Last week when looking around for garlic scape recipes (they’re almost ALWAYS pestos), I came across this little number from Open Source Cooking.  Now, I don’t have any green curry, and between the e. coli scare and the fact that our own tomato plants haven’t yet produced anything, I was going to need to do some adaptation.

The result was a middling success, with some potential.  i used carrots instead of tomatoes, but they just didn’t deliver–tomatoes, peppers, or some other flavor-heavy ingredient would likely do the trick.  The mint, however, was both the biggest gamble and the most satisfying payoff of the day.  The crispness was a nice contrast to the lip-tingling spiciness of the curry.  I had it with a ginger-clove rice, some sourdough friendship bread I made yesterday, and a Middle Ages Tripel Crown.
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Here’s something about me: I love garlic scapes and capers. I mean, I really love them by themselves, let alone in delicious concert. And, if this blog is any indication, I enjoy cooking quite a bit. But we were really close to just ordering a pizza today. But we resisted the temptation and wound up making a lovely, well-balanced meal, with a salad with lettuce, chard, shallot greens, carrots, and (yes!) a handful of capers. We adapted a chicken recipe from Edible Chesapeake (here) and half-adapted the potato recipe from one of our favorite sites, Cooking for Engineers (here)

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Well, today was the first day of our 20-week CSA farmshare, and after coming home with a basket full of produce we happily spent the evening confronting our standard summer-evening-CSA-produce dilemma: what can we make with the combination of ingredients we’ve received? Today our share included lettuce, garlic scapes, shallot greens, broccoli, asparagus, spinach, and swiss chard. We finally settled on this Chickpea and Spinach Soup from a great soup-only cookbook I found last summer for $1 at our public library’s rummage sale. It was absolutely delicious.

The photo also includes a loaf of homemade bread and homemade butter in a little jar, both of which we devoured alongside the soup for dinner.

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Indian restaurants have long been among my favorite places to eat, but I’ve never really tried to make Indian food at home. Gastronomike and I will sometimes add a curry paste to a set of basic stir-fry ingredients, and we often try recipes that use a variety of standard Indian spices, but we haven’t really tried to replicate any of our favorite Indian dishes at home (oh yes, there was that time we tried to make the yogurt curry and something seemed to go so terribly wrong).

So anyway, Gastronomike has been out of town all week, and I decided to make Palak Paneer at home for myself.

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