Lentils with Shallots, Strawberries, and Goat Cheese

lentils with shallots strawberries and goat cheese

We had to spend half a month's paychecks to replace our car's air-conditioning on Monday. We were sitting in the waiting area when we found out, working on our computers with the lounge's free wifi, and we only agreed to go through with the repair after Tim had researched other options online, compared prices, realized this was the best one and I had repeated silently in my brain that "it's only money, it's only money" once or twice. The work that we agreed to pay for would take another four or so hours, we were told, and after only about two hours in we were hungry, so the dealership's shuttle driver pulled up, picked us up and greeted us with a gruff, "Well, where are we going?" and barely two words more than that the whole ride. He was probably the age of or a little older than my own dad, maybe somebody's grandpa, the kind of guy who seemed like he might smile if you knew the right thing to say (but we never figured out what that was). He played pop songs and kept the car as cold … [Read more...]

Triple Berry Salad with Sautéed Shallots and Walnuts in a Cayenne-Honey Vinaigrette

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This year's CSA started Monday with a first week loaded with lettuce (baskets and baskets of lettuce!)... there was so much lettuce, in fact, that our farmers were giving it away, as much as you could take, whether or not you have the larger, family-sized share (we don't). It was hard for my frugal heart to take only two heads (even in addition to the kale, pokeweed, catnip, etc.), but it was easier when I unpacked our bags at home and tried to figure out how two of us would eat so many greens before they wilt. It almost goes without saying that we've been eating salads ever since. Salads with goat cheese and pesto, salads with a hodge podge of vegetables or fresh strawberries (from our other farmer!) and salads like this triple berry one we had tonight. At its heart, this is a simple combination, but the shallots and walnuts add a more complex, savory note that reminds me of Thanksgiving, and then the whole thing gets kicked up even further with the cayenne-honey oil/vinegar on … [Read more...]

Creamy Red Roasted Beet Soup

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Posting a red roasted beet soup the week after Valentine's Day is a little like posting a pumpkin pie the month after Thanksgiving, but we're going ahead and bringing you this rosy red romance in a bowl today instead of two weeks ago because it demonstrates the versatility of the basic cream soup. Like the last post, which showcased a velvety carrot soup with amaretti crumble, this creamy red roasted beet soup is beautiful simplicity---a quick and easy sauté-cook-purée-and-strain kind of job. The only added step with this method is roasting the vegetables (in this case, beets) ahead of time, which not only speeds up the soup-cooking process, but also imparts the deepened flavor that roasting vegetables brings. Also worth mentioning is the fact that you could do the same thing with many other vegetables, as demonstrated in the links below, so once you have the method down you have a ready dinner in your back pocket. In terms of taste, this beet soup is earthy and slightly sweet, with … [Read more...]

Roasted Carrot Ravioli in Thyme Brown Butter

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"Choose love not in the shallows but in the deeps." Christina Rossetti It's Valentine's week and people are talking about love, and I already brought you two sets of hearts, so I better talk about the thoughts behind them if I'm ever going to. I've been thinking so much lately about the difference between lives looked at from far away and lives looked at up close. I don't know why this is hitting me now and not when I was 15 like it probably hits some people, but now that I've seen it, I'm seeing it everywhere. It's the difference between watching someone on TV and sitting with someone for coffee, between listening to a speaker at a conference and listening to a friend in your living room, between giving someone a run-down of your day and giving someone a run-down of your heart. Things look different from far away than they look up close. Loving from a distance, in the shallows, is usually easier, as there's less risk involved and more control. You can craft a pretty image when … [Read more...]

Einkorn Berries: Einkorn Breakfast Porridge + Einkorn Salad with Radicchio and Walnuts

Here we are, gang, a new week, another early Tuesday morning, and I'm still talking about einkorn. I know. But I figure, when I brought you Friday's post, less a story and more a list of FAQs, you all were such champs, and I mean you all, every last one of you, looking a new ingredient in the face boldly and bravely, ready to give it a shot, that maybe you wouldn't mind just one more einkorn post to follow it? The thing is, while we've already told you einkorn flour is great for pizza, pancakes, cookies (einkorn in these!), tartlets and pitas, and while you know you can create your own einkorn flour by buying the berries and grinding them at home, there's something else that needs to be said, because there's more to einkorn berries than flour: einkorn berries can hold their own. The truth is, that tiny mention in Friday's post about the berries, about using them in porridges or salads---it was a little lackluster, to say the least. It was not the kind of thing to get the message … [Read more...]