So, I’ve been virulently anti-cooking the last few months, mostly because it had stopped being a joy and turned into an enormous pressure. And way too much fresh produce went into the trash because the enthusiasm to actually cook it never lasted past the first trip to the farmers’ market.
Imagine my surprise when I found myself excited to come home and make this veggie recipe by uber-chef Marcus Samuelsson, which I discovered via Twitter. (He’s @MarcusCooks)
I used endives, which were tasty, but I think I’d like to try something a wee bit more flavorful next time, such as the radicchio. Since I’m calorie-conscious, I halved the blue cheese dressing part of the recipe, and only used about 2-3 teaspoons of what I made on the salad. I have to say the watercress was a revelation. I’ve never been a fan of “cressle,” which is what my grandmother called it in Trinidad when she forced me to eat it. But not only did the heat of the grilled endives wilt the greens quite nicely, but the slight bitterness of the watercress was a nice foil to the sweetness of the endive and the blue cheese.
Let me know how it turns out if you try the recipe!
p.s. No grill pan? No problem! I trotted out my trusty George Foreman. It doesn’t make things look as pretty as a grill pan, but if you just keep an eye on it, it usually does fine with grilling veggies.
p.s. #2 The brown identified substance to the right of the plate is 1/2 a turkey sausage that I cooked yesterday. Since I’m sugar-less right now, I tend to undereat so I wanted to make sure I had enough bulk on the plate.
Crockpot Chai Tea*
(*from Rival crockpot cookbook, I think)
2 quarts ( 8 cups) water
8 bags black tea
3/4 cup sugar (or to taste)
16 whole cloves
16 whole cardamom seeds, pods removed (This ingredient is optional; the first couple of times I used ground cardamom since I didn’t have pods)
5 cinnamon sticks
8 slices fresh ginger
1 cup milk (I use skim)
1. Combine water, tea, sugar, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, and ginger in crockpot. Cover and cook on high for 2 to 2-1/2 hours.
2. Strain mixture; discard solids. (I’ve been using a slotted spoon to just scoop out the solids so I can keep the tea warm). May be covered and refrigerated for up to 3 days.
3. Stir in milk just before serving. Serve warm or chilled. (I’ve been adding the milk and letting it warm up a bit before serving.)
I bought the cardamom seeds and cinnamon sticks at the Takoma Food co-op so I could get the exact amount I needed. Here’s an article with some tips for storing the leftover ginger.
Here’s what it looks like when everything’s in the crockpot except for the water.
Find the recipe* from Orangette here. (You’ll need to scroll down toward the bottom of the post.)
p.s. Feel free to adjust the oil to taste. I used 3 T and that was quite enough.
“New York City” by Shawn Rocco from Cellular Obscura
Baby’s got background. I heart this house-themed desktop wallpaper-slash-calendar from Lena Corwin.
Garden Pretty. If I had a deck or a porch or even a sunny enough spot in my living room, I’d consider splurging on this planter I found by way of Cool Hunting. It reminds me of those old-fashioned multi-neck vases meant for tulips.
Map Quest? So you’ve probably figured out by now that I have a heart-on for anything travel-related, especially if it’s also vintage and/or handmade (or at least handmade-looking). These gorgeous maps from A La Carte certainly fit the bill, and—bonus points—you can even order customized versions marking your favorite spots. I’m jonesing to get the DC one ASAP and the Paris one as soon as it’s out in December. (And yes, that was a giant hint as to what you can get me for Christmas and/or my birthday and/or just because.)
Lickety split. Let’s face it. You can never have too many recipes for a good, tummy-tempting, split pea soup. This one’s by way of All the Best: A Passport to Stylish Living. Let me know if anyone tries this one out before I do. (And don’t be scared by the mention of the pressure cooker; a few lines down the recipe assures us that we can also use a regular pot. Just plan on it taking a little while longer for the peas to soften. And by the by, does anyone still use pressure cookers? Hmmm, might have to steal my mom’s.)
You had me at “Come in.” Another ooh-worthy moment from All the Best (thanks Ronda!) Check out this house tour courtesy of Eric Kohler design. I particularly love the stairwell-as-gallery—an idea I encourage you to steal immediately if you’ve more than one floor to your abode. I’m also in love with the various tablescapes, which encourage you to spend some time taking a good look at the various treasures.
Book’em Danno. So I never met a coffee table that I didn’t want to adorn with a coffee table book or five. On my wish list is photographer Shawn Rocco’s new book cellular obscura (also the name of Shawn’s blog). What’s utterly, absolutely, impossibly cool about this volume is that he’s taken all of these amazing photos with various CELL PHONE CAMERAS! Don’t believe me? Check out the neck-craning view of the Empire State Building above. Despite being shot using digital technology, I love how Shawn’s photos display all the moodiness of film. (Yes, you can get me this for my birthday if you’ve already gotten me an A La Carte map for Christmas.)
I’m still catching up with my Google reader, so more “Hitting the Links” or “Favorite Things” or whatever I decide to call this post tomorrow. . .perhaps . . . .