September, 2009 Archive

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

roasted tomatoes and cipollini

roasted tomato and cipollini

You were so enthusiastic when I recently told you about that cubed, hacked caprese I throw together a lot in the summer, I am clearly overdue to tell you about one of my other, favorite “tossed together” meals. Except that while I really like that caprese salad, this roasted tomato and cippoline dish is something of a religion to me: my obsession with it borders on fervor. I don’t understand why I can’t run off with it.

small roma tomatoes

Though the players may seem familiar — there go those white beans and peak-season tomatoes again! — after “roasting the hell out of them” (the directions I usually give friends when they ask how I made them), they become something else entirely. Sometime so delicious, tears well up in my eyes remembering the last time we got to eat this. Like I said, I get a little carried away.

cipollini onions

Continued after the jump »

Monday, September 7, 2009

chocolate pudding pie

chocolate pudding pie

A lot of times, a recipe comes with a story, and if you’re even luckier, it’s a good one. There are dishes that remind you of something your mama used to cook and unforgettable meals at far-flung restaurants that demand recreating in your own kitchen and fresh stuff that looked so pretty at the market, you had to come home and have your way with it.

draped pie doughchocolate puddingwhipping creamwhipped cream topping

This is not any of those times. I don’t have a good story about why I had to make a chocolate pudding pie this weekend or why you should before your weekend is done and gone, and I at first felt bad about this until I realized that at 37 weeks and 4 days pregnant not that anyone is counting or anything one does not need a good reason to make chocolate pudding pie — they are the definition of one. Because did you read the part about the chocolate? And pudding? And pie? I did. I saw those three words together on last week and had I been craving chocolate pudding before then? No. Did I know I was fixing for some pie? Nope. Did I have a good reason to make it? Well, not exactly, but I promise you, if you make chocolate pudding pie, the people will come.

chocolate pudding pie

Continued after the jump »

Friday, September 4, 2009

corn bread salad

cornbread salad

You wouldn’t believe how I have stalked this salad. It started when I bookmarked it nearly three years ago. Three! Each and every summer, it has managed to get lost in the shuffle of tomato season. This summer I decided it would be made no matter what only to discover that the link I had to the recipe no longer worked and that — huh? — I apparently didn’t own or couldn’t find the cookbook it came from. Amazon fixed that a week later, and I set to making it for a barbecue last weekend, only for the barbecue plans to fall through as heirloom tomatoes grew soft on our counter. One thing after another got in the way of this salad this week — first we were out of buttermilk, then basil, then daylight, then energy… — until I finally dug my heels in last night and decided that we would have corn bread salad with dinner or else. I know, I’m so intimidating when I threaten salad.

heirloom tomatoes
chopped heirlooms

I’m so sorry I waited so long. This salad is the height of peak-summer awesomeness, a kind of Southern answer to Italian Panzanella — with cornbread for the croutons, buttermilk-lime dressing for the olive oil and red wine vinegar and soft lettuces for the chunky vegetables. It was a shame we weren’t eating it on a wrap-around porch somewhere, with sweet tea in tall glasses and a basket of room-temperature fried chicken, but it doesn’t mean that you can make that happen this holiday weekend.

toasted cornbread cubes
Continued after the jump »

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

granola bars

granola bars

Some of you have asked me to share what kind of cooking I’ve been doing to stash in the freezer and hopefully tide us over for the coming storm (T-minus 22 days, not that anyone is counting). I know it’s common, in a fit of impatient nesting, for soon-to-be mamas to tuck away pans of enchiladas and lasagnas and meatballs and other hearty, freezable fare so that they don’t starve in those early weeks when the baby demands constant surveillance (okay, cooing), but despite understanding the logic behind this, I should confess: I’m prepping nothing.

dried apricots, cranberries and raisins

At least one of the reasons I’ve decided to ignore sound advice to cook and stash while I can is that food could not be easier to come by around here. Hummus platter with fava bean stews, pirogis and borscht and/or Tom Collichio-crafted sandwiches arrive so quickly after you call, we’ve become convinced that they’re actually preparing in our building’s basement and you don’t even want to know how many Thai and sushi restaurants there are per block around here (at least two). Plus, both of our families live within an hour of the city and (Hi Mom! Hi Alex’s Mom!) our moms are not only good cooks, but have vowed to keep us from starving. Wasn’t that sweet of them?

granola mix

Continued after the jump »