Tuesday, 3 January 2012 | 7 comments

Goat cheese toasts with yellow split pea spread

Happy New Year! At midnight, a big group of friends ran with us outside, around the new house, banging pots and pans with wooden spoons, and whooping and hollering. It felt good. I can only hope your 2012 was rung in as exuberantly. I’m hanging out over with Kelsey of the blog Happyolks with a recipe for goat cheese toasts with yellow split pea spread this week, with some thoughts about gathering. Go check it out, if you’re so inclined.

Friday, 16 December 2011 | 10 comments

Breaking rules

Do you make rules for yourself? I started to write this post, and then realized that I might sound a little crazy, talking about lists of rules I self-enforce. I don’t mean self-denial or masochism. They’re silly rules, but they’re useful. For instance, there is a growing list of publications I’m no longer allowed to read on the train home, because I am statistically more likely to stop at the grocery store and impulse-buy ingredients for recipes that I need to have if I read them. No looking at the Anthropologie catalogue, ever (for similar reasons). No drinking an entire bottle of red wine by myself on a Sunday. I’m joking about the last one. Sort of.Similarly, there is a list of states in which I should not allow myself to go to a farmer’s market. There was that time I was starved for color during a week of grey days and bought radishes just because they were so rosy. Or the time I got peach-drunk on the promise of summer and brought home a bushel of peaches. Then, when summer was waning, I became a bit obsessive about wringing the last drops out of the season, and bought every single forlorn, split tomato from a farmstand. I am a woman that needs a little structure, if nothing else, for the sake of my budget. » Click to read more

Tuesday, 13 September 2011 | 9 comments

Deconstructed baba ghanoush

I have a bad habit of buying produce just because I like the way it looks. These slender, twist-y little Japanese eggplants caught my eye at the farmer’s market. At home, I put them in a basket on the counter, and they stared at me for a few days, too pretty to just chop into coins and panfry, but not big enough to make, say, eggplant parmesan.I love baba ghanoush, but wanted something that would honor the unusual form of these eggplants, rather than roasting them down to smoky mush, like baba ghanoush recipes generally instruct. » Click to read more

Thursday, 11 August 2011 | 15 comments

Tomato tart

There’s really not much I can say about tomatoes-in-summer that hasn’t already been said. Recently, though, I’ve become fixated on the smell of tomato leaves and stems. The prickly-vegetal scent permeates the hands of any gardener working with the plant, or any marketgoer lucky enough to find tomatoes on the vine. A few weeks ago, I stuck my nose into a glass of rosé wine, and the most startling green-tomato scent overcame me. I didn’t want to drink it—I just sat there, smelling, over and over. Seriously: essence of strawberries and tomato leaves in that glass. I won’t soon forget it.But today we’re dealing with the fruit hanging on those stems and leaves, and specifically, those big, meaty types of that fruit that, to be honest, I generally avoid. They seem like sandwich tomatoes, and I don’t need tomatoes in the summer for a sandwich, for goodness sake! We have much more important tomato work to do. For this recipe, though, you’ll need them. » Click to read more

Tuesday, 19 July 2011 | 45 comments

Zucchini fritters

I know, I know: enough with the squash already, woman! My only response is to humbly ask that you remind me, next year, in the event that my gentleman friend and I plant separate gardens again, to not both plant summer squash. On paper, in my garden notebook, it seemed a great idea to proudly only include native, heirloom varieties in my own garden, turning my nose up at the plain ol’ crooknecks Ben was planting. Now it’s summer, and I’ve got a changed heart and an armful of squash.

So! More squash.
» Click to read more

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