Mmmm! Pie. As I said, Peggy gave me a lot of rhubarb. I love this because I had plenty left after the compote to whip up a pie! I happened to have a pie crust in the freezer but it was a bit dried out. So I defrosted it, mixed in a little more flour and water, kneaded it and rolled it out into a brand new crust. Success! Pie crust revival we called it. Maybe its just because we live in what used to be a church, the pie spirits were definitely on our side. They were also on our side, it appears, during the pie making itself. Yum!
Rhubarb Crumble Pie:
1 lbs rhubarb, chopped
2/3 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp flour
One pie crust
1/4 cup butter, very soft or melted
1 cup flour
1/3 cup oats
1/2 cup brown sugar
Directions: Chop the rhubarb into small 1/4″ or 1/2″ pieces and stir into a mixing bowl with flour, sugar and cinnamon. Set aside for ten minutes or so while you prepare the crust and the topping. Preheat the oven to 450F. Mix all ingredients for the crumble topping in a small bowl. It should be like crumbly cookie dough. If it isn’t add a little more flour and sugar. Pour rhubarb, and any juices in the bottom of the bowl, into the prepare pie crust and top evenly with crumble. Place in the oven at 450F for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350F for another 50min to an hour. Voila!
The pie cooling on our old stove in the foyer!
I had trouble knowing when it was done…so I just let it stay in the oven at 350 and made sure it didn’t burn. I also put a cookie sheet under it for spills, because it did bubble over a bit. Nothing wrong with a great summer pie fresh from the garden!
Our garden here at 345 8th seems to be doing well. We have lots of zucchini flowers and a few squash blossoms AND our pumpkin seeds have just poked up through the soil! I think I will get some set spray for the tomatoes, as our bees seem nonexistent. BUT the wildflower seeds we planted just started to come up, so maybe they will grow fast and the bees will come! The spices (rosemary, basil, parsley and mint) are flourishing in their pots. And I am composting again since I retained partial custody of the compost bins I share with the Cellar Ladies. Plus, Peggy and I have a zucchini trade planned. I give her zucchini, she gives me…asparagus, rhubarb and maybe later in the season some potatoes! Winning.
Somehow, on Monday, I managed to get up and start cooking before my roommate even poached his eggs. So then, after an excellent breakfast and some fun times watching SNL skits, talking about Northern England rave culture, skiing in Chamonix: I had a pie in the oven and some compote on the stove!
This weekend, Peggy gave me some fresh asparagus an armload of rhubarb from her garden. The asparagus is good enough to eat raw, and I have been dipping it into hummus..or just eating. Mmm! I was most excited about the giant green rhubarb (its not the red kind) stalks that she cut for me. I planned to make a pie for sure, but I wanted to do a little experimenting with the rest of it. So I decided to use a few strawberries, some fresh garden basil and rhubarb to make a compote. I also added some brown sugar to the mix to keep it interesting.
Strawberry, Rhubarb and Basil Compote:
1 lbs rhubarb, chopped into 1/2″ pieces
1/2 lbs strawberries, chopped in half (they break down as it cooks)
2 Tbsp water
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
Directions: Set a large pot over medium high head and add water, rhubarb and strawberries. Once they start to heat up, toss in the sugars and basil. Boil for a few moments and then turn heat to low. Simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally. The fruit will break down and the mixture should thicken a bit…it will thicken more in the fridge.
Yum! Basil was a good idea. Our gas stove doesn’t go very low, so I stirred it a lot to keep it from burning to the bottom of the pan, but it turned out excellent I think! I put it on an english muffin type thing called a “breakfast round” that I get from Natural Grocers….but now we just need some vanilla ice cream…?
And the pie. YUM. standby.
Finally, moved in and feeling like we live here! Our house is incredible and our garden is settled and summer is almost here! So the goals: work more, cook more, play more, make art more, do everything more. Who cares about moderation when life is so grand? Right.
So last week I taught a still life painting class and I bought carrots and brussels sprouts for the set up…and what do you do after veggies are done with their still-life life? YOU COOK THEM! So I chopped them up and roasted them. Just wait.
Roasted Veggies with Bacon:
1 Tbsp olive oil
2 Tbsp balsamic Vinegar
1 lb brussels sprouts
1 lb carrots
3-4 slices of bacon, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Preheat oven to 450F white you chop vegetables and bacon. Toss oil and vinegar with veggies on a cookie sheet, sprinkle with salt and pepper and place in center rack of oven. Roast for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Yumm! I don’t think you can go wrong with bacon…and veggies. In fact, vegetables are more healthy with bacon? Duh. So make these, enjoy them. Put them on a salad, put them with couscous, eat them plain!
So We’ve moved! A little change in plans and we land ourselves smack in downtown Steamboat with great new roommates and a glorious garden. Ok, well…glorious for what we had to work with, which is a short planting season (which we joined way late) and a tiny yard full of pretty gross soil and a ton of weeds. A few hours of work turned most of that around and we have a pretty great garden underway. Unfortunately, we failed to take before pictures, but we did get some after!
After gardening all morning, I managed to get in a nice swim (finally!) in the hot sun, wash and vacuum the car and make some pasta dough before Sunny (one of the aforementioned great new roommates) and I went to a 60min Hot Vinyasa session. Man was that amazing. Goal: hit the yoga studio once a week? Sounds great. When got back from yoga, starving and exhausted, I set to work rolling the pasta through my pasta maker and setting it aside for Sunny to hand cut. Teamwork. Then I mixed together some canned tomatoes (can’t wait for the garden fresh variety!), spinach, onion, olives, artichoke hearts (Sunny’s idea) and fresh basil/parsley for a yummy sauce.
We then parked ourselves infront of the TV for some excellent first season The Office episodes and promptly fell asleep.
1 1/2 cups flour
Directions: Measure flour into mixing bowl, make a well and add eggs. Mix well then turn out onto a flat surface. Knead until it is really smooth and pliable (maybe 20-30min depending on your kneading). You’ll know. Because you just will. Use the dough immediately or wrap in cellophane a fridge for up to three days. This recipe makes about four servings, but you can double the recipe easily. To cook: Put a large pot of water on to boil with a little bit of salt. Meanwhile, turn your pasta through machine or roll as thin as possible. Cut pasta, and add to boiling water a few noodles at a time. Stir to make sure the are separated in the water and boil for 5-8 minutes until done. Drain and serve warm!
Pseudo Puttanesca Sauce:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 white onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
two cups spinach
a handful of chopped black olives
1/4 cup chopped artichoke hearts
1/4 cup fresh basil, chopped
2 Tbsp fresh parsley, chopped
salt and pepper to taste
Directions: Sautee onions and garlic in a medium pan for 5-10min on medium high heat. Add the rest of the ingredients, stir to combine and turn heat to low and let simmer for ten or so minutes (this is when I rolled out the pasta and boiled it).
Pasta Verdict: Best and easiest pasta yet…the dough needs a lot of work though. Well worth it. All in all, it was a great meal!
Enjoy the garden!
Wow it has been months. My goal this summer is to get back on track cooking and blogging and generally get back to normalness. I don’t even know what happened except..its life. But I am back! In a few weeks I am moving out to a ranch and planning to spend more time cooking, in between all my working (stand by for lunch box snacks!). I also intend to procure a grill. I already have some recipes stored away. Bring it, summer!
Anyways, last week I was with my parents in the Bahamas. We enjoyed a few great days in the sun and some excellent dinners. Steaks, Mahi, Salmon, you name it. The last night, we had a myriad of leftovers and weren’t sure what to do, so we came up with this! While this dish isn’t Bahamian, it is something that Mom and I came up with in the Bahamas (practically the same thing, right?)! Super tasty. I think you could use almost anything to make a yummy stir fry. Almost.
Leftover Stir Fry:
1 Tbps olive oil
Four stalks celery, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
1 onion, chopped
1-2 cooked steaks, sliced into this strips
1 clove garlic, minced
1 tsp basil
1 tsp red pepper flakes
1/4 cup soy sauce
Rice for serving (we used leftover Saffron rice and it was excellent)
Directions: Heat olive oil in a large pan over medium. Add veggies and spices, cover and cook for ten-fifteen minutes, stirring occasionally. Add steak and soy sauce. Turn to low, recover and cook for five more minutes. Stir and serve over rice!
Enjoyed by all. I topped mine with a liberal amount of wasabi sauce. YUM. We also had some Texas toast that we whipped out for a garnish. Classy, I know.
Well, its not yet spring but it has been warming up quite a bit here in Steamboat! The last few weeks have been pretty busy with Vday, Mardi Gras and Presidents day. Wow. So the mountain has been packed. Rock concert packed. I am not going to lie, I am looking forward to spring time. Warm weather and fun times ahead!
And as usual, I have been spurred by our busy-ness to make treats…all the time. Along with some blondies that I created last week for VDay, I made my traditional Kings Cake for Mardi Gras and my new favorite kind of cake ball (recipe to come) for a special mid-week treat this week! Of course, they didn’t last long enough to snag a photo of, so instead, I am posted my newest creation…
PB Chocolate Chip Bars:
1 1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup butter, room temp
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 cup creamy PB
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp vanilla
1 bag semi sweet chocolate chips
Directions: Preheat oven to 350F and grease a 9×13″ pan. In a small bowl, mix flour baking soda and salt. In large bowl, cream butter, sugars and egg together. Add PB and vanilla and stir until smooth. Add flour in two parts and stir until it is all incorporated. Fold in chocolate chips. Press dough evenly into greased pan and bake for 18-20minutes or until the edges are golden. Let cool and serve!
Yummm! Chewycrunch…that is all I have to say. Perfect. I decided to take the liberty of editing a pretty standard recipe and adding twice the PB…best idea ever. I took these to a girls clothes-swap that my friend Larraine threw. Everyone made some tasty desserts and we had a blast swapping clothes and hanging out with a few glasses of wine. Plus, we didn’t spend any money and we all ended up with new clothes!
It has been DUMPING here in Steamboat! I am still not fully walking, so I have been ogling it from my window. We had about 14″ just last night, and the trees are piled with snow. Of course, I cannot wait to get back out on my skis!
This past week, eggplant was on sale at City Market for $1 each! D and I decided to buy some and see what we could do with it. I usually make a spicy Asian eggplant (mmmm), but Mom sent me a recipe a few months ago that involved lamb and eggplant in a sort of lasagna style dish. So I decided to re-make that recipe into more of a tomato sauce for spaghetti squash. Mmmm. We managed to find some relatively local lamb at the City Market too!
Eggplant and Lamb Sauce:
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 large eggplant, chopped (I leave the peel on)
1 lbs ground lamb
5 tomatoes, chopped (or a 22ox can of chopped tomatoes)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp basil
Directions: Heat olive oil in a large pot over medium heat. Add onions and cook until the soften. Add tomatoes, eggplant and spices and cook until it is simmering. Add lamb, stirring until the lamb is brown. Turn to low, cover and simmer for 10minutes. Serve over pasta or squash!
Quarter squash and place in a shallow pan core side down with a bit of water. Microwave for 7-10minutes or until soft enough to remove core from skin. If you want to bake it, do the same prep but cook at 350 for 35-40 minutes.
Yum! D and I ate on this for a few days, I would say it served 5-6. Also, I always forget how much I absolutely LOVE lamb. The eggplant does a good job of soaking up the flavors and adding a little texture to the sauce and it goes fabulously with the meat and tomatoes. Of course, spaghetti quash is super scrumptious anytime! I sometimes just make spaghetti squash and put some parm or even brown sugar on it. Mmmm!