June, 2009 Archive

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

lemon mint granita

lemon mint granita

Granitas have never exactly captured my imagination. Flecks of flavored ice in a bowl seemed rather dull, and their place in the dessert repository was kind of lost on me. Trust me, if I’m hoping you’re going to bust out some salted caramel dark chocolate mousse and you come out of the kitchen with pale icy chips? It’s going to be hard for me to feign enthusiasm.

lemons, not intact for long

But now I get it. People, granitas are a Snoopy Sno-Cone Machine of our kid dreams. They’re the perfect antidote to the sticky, oppressive summer days to come — frosty, crunchy and tart — tossing out that annoying plastic crank in favor of the unbranded simplicity of two forks and a roasting pan, and swapping the unnatural syrups in frightening hues for fresh fruit juice.

lemons, top quarters removedscooping out the lemonscooped out lemon cupslemon cups, getting frozen

Continued after the jump »

Monday, June 1, 2009

pesto potato salad with green beans

pesto potato salad

If you think my slaw affliction is bad, let me introduce you to my potato salad habit. There’s that everything-but-the-kitchen-sink version, with its pickles and onions and vinegar and mayo and mustard and celery and then hard-boiled eggs, as if there were a risk of potato salad monotony. Then there’s the stepped-up dilled version, where you start by making your own cucumber pickles the night before and then finish it with radishes. It’s heaven in a Central European bowl. Oh, and now there’s this pesto too, just perfect for the mayo-phobic out there and look, it has green beans! It must be healthy.

green beans, trimmed and tailed
chunked yellow potatoes

This recipe comes courtesy of my green tomato and okra-frying friend Ang, who says it’s her go-to favorite. But what captivated me about it was the play on that Ligurian pasta dish called trofie with potatoes, pesto and green beans that several readers notes when I made a riff on it a couple month ago. I played around with it a little, deconstructing the pesto so the toasted pine nuts became a crunchy garnish and finishing it with wide flakes of parmesan. It was delicious and summery and my only regret was not taking any of the leftovers home so I could eat it today for lunch.

Continued after the jump »