24 March 2011

project in mind...

Hey you.  You who read my blog. :) I have a project brewing in my brain and I'd love a little help.  Is there something you want to learn how to cook?  Or do you have a go to meal that delicious and satisfying that you make after a hard days work?  If you're willing to share, I'd love to know about it!!

22 March 2011

what do you get

When you put a rutabaga, a fennel bulb and a celeriac root together?  SOUP! Simple, simple soup.  I'm home alone, it's later than making dinner time, I'm hungry. I have the last of my root veggies from the CSA so, I made soup.  It was a little nippy today, why not?

This is similar to that soup I made at home awhile ago.  I think you could probably throw anything in a pot cook it up and eat it. Sometimes it tastes good, sometimes its terrible...this soup is AWESOME. As awesome, if not more awesome was my garnish.  I made a sorta tzatziki, this I could eat by itself every morning, it's fresh and simple. Yum!
Ruta-celer-nnel Root Soup w. Simple Tzatsiki
Makes 2 bowls of soup
  • 1 medium celeriac root, roots & dirt removed, roughly chopped
  • 1 small/medium rutabaga, rough chop, sans skin
  • 1 small fennel bulb, rough chop
  • 2 garlic cloves, whole & smashed
  • red pepper flakes
  • olive oil
  • salt & paper to taste
First, heat a saucepan on medium heat, add olive oil and garlic, let this crackle a bit, shake in enough red pepper to give it a kick.  You know your palate I don't, so, if I told you how much, it might be too much.  Then add the fennel, rutabaga and celeriac root and saute for maybe 10 minutes.  Then add water (or broth, if you want) to cover the veggies.  Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer for 20 minutes or so.  Just keep checking to see when the bigger pieces of veggie are soft.

While the soup is simmering, in one bowl put 1/2 cup of plain greek yogurt, a small Persian cucumber with the skin cut off and diced teeny tiny.  Add the zest of a quarter of a small lemon, then the juice from that quarter and stir. That's it!

Once the soup is done, pour into a big enough bowl that you can put your emulsion blender into and blend until smooth.  Put in your favorite bowl add the simple tsatzki and eat up. So good!!

Unfortunately, I ate two of these after!

17 March 2011

change of plans

The plan for this post was to talk about an enchilada recipe I made a few weeks back. ... again, I forgot to take pictures, I think. I'll work on that maybe I should put my camera in the kitchen so I REMEMBER to take pictures of my food....

So, here's what I wanted to talk about.  Libya.  All I listen to when I'm in the car alone is NPR, non-stop.  It's where I get my news, my information.  For the last several weeks every time I've heard anything about Libya I start to cry.  It's not sobbing but it's this emotional frustration and sadness for the people living in Libya.  This morning there was the announcement that the NY Times is missing 4 journalists and there was this wave of fear and empathy for them, their safety, their family members and friends.  Then there was the story about the people living on the outskirts of the conflict torn cities, they go on with life sort of normal just waiting for something to go wrong, terribly wrong.  So wrong that they could lose their loved ones.  Then there's all these stories about how Colonel Qaddafi refuses to step down and threatens his own people...pays people to kill his own people...it's unbelievably tragic.  It's sickening.  There's the story of the immigrant workers who are stranded in Libya and can't do anything to get out because they don't have the money or they don't have their papers...I mean, there was even a woman who was saying that she was working for an American diplomat, who has fled the country and has left her totally stuck with no offer of.  Fine, I don't know the details but this is what it seems.  And then there's the Libyan who is doing everything he can to help, he brings the stranded immigrats food and water and whatever else he can do.

kjfhgiurnvkjf I don't even know what to say.  I'm horrified by the situation.  I feel fucking terrible and I wish there was something, anything, I can do.  I think I (we) take so much for granted.  We think we are so safe and so removed from any potential problems or issues with all of this suffering going on around us.  The tsunami, the poverty in third world countries...the poverty in our own country.  Not us.  Not next door.  Not even close.  But this shit happens.  It's so so real.  I'm not sitting here thinking I know anything about any of this, I'm just trying to understand the conflict.  To understand my own feelings and it's a fucking shit show.

Sorry for being crass.  I'm just stuck with all these feelings.  I can't fully explain, its just this constant weight and pain. 

Thanks for listening.  I'll get that enchilada recipe soon.

01 March 2011

sweet and simple

Why haven't I ever made candied orange peels before? So simple and so sweet.  I don't know if I've mentioned it before, but we're part of a CSA here in California (which is still weird to say) and it's one of the best decisions we could have made. Oh the bounty each week! As it is winter, we've had a lot of root veggies, as expected. What I wasn't prepared for was all of the citrus, I know it's the season but on the East coast everything is shipped in so, if you're buying locally you don't have total access to it. 

For the past few weeks, we've been getting pound of navel oranges and like I pointed out, we have an orange tree in our backyard and man are those puppies good. Long story short, I candied some orange peels and here's how.

I took two medium to large oranges and peeled them, I washed the oranges before I did any of this, duh. Take a small paring knife and get rid of some of pith, that white stuff on the inside of the peel. Then into a pot of cold water that just covers the peels. Bring to a boil for about 15 minutes, then drain and rinse and do this again, they need a bath BIG time. Then, three cups of water, two cup granulated sugar and one cup light brown sugar bring this to a boil.  Stirring often so that the sugar dissolves. I think next time I do this, I might divide the sugars (1.5 of each), the brown sugar gives the orange a real hardy flavor. Once this comes to a boil, put peels in pot and bring back to a boil then reduce and simmer for about 45 minutes.  While this is boiling, mix together 1/2 cup granulated sugar and 1/2 cup light brown sugar. Cooks note: I would use 1/4 cup of each...this time around felt like a lot of sugar.  Drain the peels, don't rinse them, then put them back in a bowl and toss with the sugar.  Go on, toss 'em with your hands...it'll make you feel very connected with your sugary sweets. Once coated, spread the peels out on a cookie rack over a baking sheet.  

The drying process will take a day or two, you can try them as they are drying to make sure they aren't dry yet. Then, pop them in a cute mason jar you have lying around the house and snack on or chop up and add to oatmeal, yogurt, whatever. You can also add them to muffins or quickbreads. Sweet - and I mean seriously.

Finished product