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We’ve got an odd assortment of things in the gastronomic kitchen right now, and so for dinner tonight we had two very good, though oddly paired, dishes: a tomato salad and roasted root vegetables.

Yesterday morning we disovered, to our dismay, that our tomato plants have the dreaded blight.  They grew so well (7 feet tall!!), but will not be yielding any edible fruit.  So when we  went to the farmers market with our friends Caly and Steve later in the day we were on the hunt for some non-blighted tomatoes.

For the tomato salad we simply sliced and arranged a tomato around the edge of a plate, tucked slices of fresh mozzarella and basil leaves (grown in our window box) between the tomato slices, drizzled the whole thing with olive oil and oregano (also procured at the farmers market).  It was the first time I’ve made a tomato salad, and it was really good.  Next time I would add a pinch of salt and some cracked pepper, but it was a definite success.

On to the root vegetables:

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Despite appearances, nothing on this plate is burned!  It’s a combination of potato, beet, and carrot, tossed in oil, salt, and pepper, and roasted at 375 for about an hour.  The really dark, crispy-looking pieces are the beets, which were not, actually, crispy at all.  Their surfaces were nicely carmelized, but not at all crispy (and not at all burned!).  The potatoes had crispy, crunch surfaces and the carrots were somewhere in between the beets and the potatoes.  Delicious.  Next time I might add onions and garlic to the roasting pan.

We did make a third dish tonight, but I fear it wasn’t nearly the success these two were.  In fact, neither Gastronomike nor I ate any of it!  We fried a piece of bacon, added an onion some kale and the beet greens, and sauteed with water and red pepper flakes for about 30 minutes before adding a bit of vinegar to finish it off.  I don’t think it was bad per se… it just didn’t look nearly as appetizing as these other two dishes and we were both pretty full from these first two dishes.  We boxed it up and I’ll probably eat it for lunch tomorrow.

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