Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Back in Boston, still pale.

Oh my goodness, I have been gone for so long! I meant to post about Kathy Frontino's unfathomably good potato salad before I left and I plum ran out of time... and to be extra annoying I'm not going to write it up until I make it again, which will be soon. It is just about summer, after all!

Once things settle down (read: Thursday, before/after the LOST finale) I will tell you about some of the deliciousness/weirdness of Tucson, AZ where I was sitting in the sun for the extra long weekend, decidedly not getting a tan. Freckles, yes. Tan, well, still no. Back to work, Bruno!

Friday, May 16, 2008

On Tuesday I made a mistake.

I went to the grocery store without a list on Tuesday. As I left work I was thinking of the greens in the fridge and how I'd better have a salad since they are probably not going to be good for too long This is as bad as, if not worse than, going to the grocery store hungry. Everything looks so gosh darn tempting! Over in produce I fell victim to the siren song of a cute potato, which I boiled up and made into my second attempt at this delicious potato focaccia. Of course, that meant that I had to buy a sleeve of overpriced but smokey-yummy cherry tomatoes. (Quel bummer, non?)

While I wander my way through the oh-so-narrow aisles, my mind almost always races. What recipes have I read this week that sound wonderful? What foods have I been mulling over trying to think of a way to transform them? What on earth is in my tiny cupboard at home? What's in the fridge? Anyway, with all these swirling thoughts and wonderful recipes bouncing around, you probably think I ate something shockingly complex for dinner, right? Nope:

I had an avocado for dinner. One of my favorite things to do in the kitchen is open and pit an avocado. There is something very satisfying an primal about the thwack! of the knife into the pit, and when you twist to remove it you get this beautiful creamy green cup. So I filled it up with Balsamic vinegar, sprinkled it with my new no-excuses salt, and dug in with my trusty spoon. In the end, all that was left in the bowl was a pair of little leathery boats.

Monday, May 12, 2008

There is no photo to do these cookies justice.

After a really lovely and long walk around Cambridge in the sunshine including stops for boys and stops for girls and lots of mocking of unnecessary kitchen gadgets (and a tasty quesadilla at Miracle of Science), I finally made my way back to Brighton late on Sunday afternoon. I called my darling cousin Dominique, who graduates from BC this coming weekend (go, smartypants go!) but finished her finals an interminable week ago. Needless to say, her still-studying housemates were glad to see her leave the apartment. We chopped chocolate, we mixed dry goods, we went to the store for more rolled oats, and we generally futzed about the kitchen while the lemon chicken marinated. The end result was the sweet + salty = deliciousness of these cookies. I'm sure the high quality Green & Black's vanilla white helped, but I don't even like white chocolate and I loooved these. These will be the cookies I send to people when they do nice things for me. Yes.

My original reaction to this recipe was hey! An excuse to buy Maldon Sea Salt! I aspire to be on of those people with 15 kinds of salt in the cupboard, so thank you, Deb, for the recipe and the reason.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Pass the Peas, Please.

Last week Luisa posted a tasty-looking recipe that piqued my interest, as I had just bought a bag of frozen peas. Also, when Adam got back from Tucson last month he brought me some desert blossom honey that I hadn't even opened yet. And then when my train decided it was going express from Cleveland Circle and stopped right in front of Trader Joe's, I decided it was meant to be. I wandered through the aisles picking up mint, parmesan and TJ's pasta - no, it wasn't fresh, but it was the noodle specified in the recipe - and was pleasantly surprised by the $10 total. How have I not been shopping at Trader Joe's forever? It's just so much less expensive!

But I digress. When I got back to the house, Courtney's dad was there helping her move out. Commence sobbing. She has been an excellent, excellent roommate and we will miss her dearly. [Aside: new roomie moved in on Sunday. She seems cool.] After they took off in the thoroughly packed car, I went back in to start cooking. I sauteed the peas and onion and honey for 10 minutes while the water came to a boil (it smelled SO good) and then got out my new immersion blender. No dice. This is the second time in a row it hasn't worked (the first time was for almond chopping) and I'm starting to think something is wrong. Almonds are tough, but cooked peas? They are smushy little blobs. This is ridiculous. So I got out the potato masher and instead of pureed peas, I had mashed peas. This was also very good for getting out the frustration caused by my malfunctioning kitchen appliances. Anyway, I sauteed some more peas, cooked the pasta, combined the whole thing with cooking water and added mint and cheese. Oh man. So delicious! I like peas, and I like mint, but together with the cheese they have this whole unexpected shadowy thing going on. It was delicious. I had leftovers on Friday and when I got home yesterday there was still some in the fridge, so I had MORE. Even five days later, though the pasta was soggy, the flavor was wonderful.

And I forgot to take a picture. It's ok, right? I'm new. I promise I'll try harder.