I had a very serious conversation with the family at Easter dinner… About our favorite ice cream flavors. It seems every human being is obligated to have one, but if you asked me about my mom’s go-to, I really wouldn’t know. Turns out, she doesn’t know either, and none of us has a definitive one, really–what might have been a simple Q&A in other families became us just naming flavors. Yeah… I’m related to these people.
I should also add that we were eating ice cream. Before eating cake. Again–these people are definitely my people.
However, I think my maybe-favorite, the one I would pick if you held a gun to my head (which you wouldn’t do, because that’s dumb) is mint chip. There is so much to like: the freshness, the balance of sweet with bitter dark chocolate, the crunch… I am a fan.
But why don’t we branch out today? You may not think of basil as dessert-appropriate, but why not? Mint is only used in desserts because we’re used to it. There are so many other green, fragrant, delightful things that grow in the dirt on our planet. Let’s play with them.
Meet the cocktail that was inspired by a sandwich… A sandwich I never even ate. (Someday I’ll make sense, but that day is not today.)
See, I’m a fan of a local cheese shop/deli. Somewhat masochistically, I read their Facebook updates on what they’re serving for lunch, even though I cannot get there during the day because of dumb logistic reasons. Occasionally, their lunch creations involve strawberry-tarragon jam. (…And brie–ugh, told you. It’s downright painful and I don’t know why I do it to myself.)
So what’s a girl to do? Oh, I don’t know. Let’s try pouring gin on strawberries and tarragon. It’ll be fun–I promise.
Posted in Drinks, Entertaining, Spring, Summer
Tagged berries, cocktails, Fruit, gimlet, gin, herbs, lime, tarragon
So, as it turns out, I’m pretty good at being totally behind and somehow also ahead at the same time?
I don’t have an Easter recipe for you, although I think that pork chops with rhubarb sauce are perfect casual Easter dinner material, that this orzo salad would make a great side, that you should take cheese puffs everywhere, and that Easter is the perfect time to kick off ice cream season. I also–and this is what I mean by being kind of ahead of things–have an idea for your leftovers. Ham, specifically… Alongside lots of fresh, crunchy vegetables.
With all due respect to bagged greens, there is so much more fun to be had with salad. I’m pretty sure almost any vegetable can be turned into a base for salad, whether raw, roasted, steamed, shredded, sliced, shaved… The possibilities are, well, not endless (endful?), but close. So let’s play with vegetables. (And PORK.)
Posted in Healthy (?), Main courses, Meat, Salad, Sides, Spring
Tagged asparagus, dijon, dill, ham, herbs, main course salad, pork, salad, shallot, shaved vegetables, vinaigrette
Sometimes I forget about the joys of pure, unadulterated, simple carbs. No talk of protein, fiber, the glycemic index, or–even worse–gluten, just starchy goodness. I love wholesome, hearty brown grains as much as humanly possible (pretty sure), but there’s no substitute. You know what I’m talking about–apples are good, oranges are good, but they’re not the same. Let’s stop pretending.
Also, it’s spring. It’s time to reawaken those taste buds with bright, delicate flavors like lemon, and peas, and what’s that–fresh mint?
Posted in Main courses, Spring, Vegetarian
Tagged angel hair, carbs, cheese, fresh, herbs, lemon, mint, parmesan, pasta, peas
Mes chers amis! (All the French I know comes from what I picked up from Julia Child’s autobiography.)
Today we’re going to be a wee bit fancy. I mean it–there aren’t even any yoga pants in sight around here. Just the little luxuries that are sandalwood candles, fresh laundry, an awesome soundtrack and cheesy snacks.
That last thing… It might be my very favorite thing.
Gougeres are just one of many uses of the eggy wonder that is choux pastry. It’s the same dough we use for profiteroles/cream puffs, except that instead of baking, then filling them, we add cheese and herbs right in, pipe them smaller, and let them get all puffy and wonderful. In fact, if you’ve ever wanted to give cream puffs a try, this would be a good practice run. An opportunity to test the waters. (And the butters, and the flours–hey-o!)
The end result? Bite-size puffs with a chewy, airy, eggy middle, dotted with salty, pungent (in the good way) gorgonzola cheese that oozes out onto the surface to leave those heavenly, brown, crunchy melted-and-cooled-cheese spots. The chives are there for a touch of oniony greenery. I think it’s nice.
Posted in Appetizer, Baking, Entertaining, Vegetarian
Tagged blue cheese, cheese, cheese puffs, chives, eggs, French, gorgonzola, gougeres, herbs, pastries, savory pastries
But wasn’t I whining about the cold a couple of days ago? Why, yes. But alcohol is delicious! Also, I make zero sense.
What does make sense is taking beautiful, in-season, ripe, juicy grapefruit, and putting tequila on it. Nature’s most tart, refreshing citrus graces us in the winter. We may not need refreshment from the heat, but we do need refreshment from… Everything else. So let’s drink.