Sunday, April 12, 2009

Vacation wrap-up, Week 19 start-up

I'm back and, thanks to la Diva, I've got this week's share.

As I predicted, I was kicked out of the kitchen while my mother, sister and brother-in-law cooked for Passover. I didn't even get to make any dessert. I don't really know how this traditional came about. They must have settled into a routine while I was living in San Diego and couldn't afford to fly back cross-country every year. Just as well, probably, as I've never actually roasted a turkey, braised a brisket, made chopped liver or matzo balls so I'd probably screw them up on my first try. Or more likely, do something different with them. Briskets should be smoked and there are plenty of interesting things to do with chicken livers.

Not that my mother's chopped liver recipe isn't interesting; she's got a few tweaks to the standard methodology that are worth recording. I'll took some notes and some pictures and I'll give it it's own sometime soon.

I did get to cobble together a meal from the picked-over leftovers: just some roasted broccoli and turkey scraps. I sauteed some onion and mushrooms, added the leftovers to reheat, then chicken soup and cream, salt, pepper and plenty of nutmeg which I cooked down for a sauce to go over fresh pasta. I didn't have a pasta maker so the noodles ended up quite thick and chewy, but since I didn't have to struggle with a pasta maker they were really easy to make. That's something everyone makes a few days after Thanksgiving, right?

I also spent some time looking through the cookbooks my sister brought and found a really interesting recipe for the beets. It's rather involved and I have the more perishable items from week 19 to worry about first so it may be a little while before I get around to it, though. How did you guys deal with the giant beets? Or are they still taunting you from the backs of your refrigerators?

As for those week 19 items, let's start with the leeks. When I thought they were more spring onions I decided on doing an onion bread and not 100% on abandoning that idea. But I've always liked leeks in a cream sauce too. I'll have to see what they look like cleaned up; I may have enough there for two recipes, particularly with last week's spring onions added to the pile.

For the eggplant, I have a Javanese eggplant in sweet soy sauce recipe I want to make and I'm thinking of adding onions, peppers and squash to make a weird version of ratatouille out of it.

La Diva got me an extra bag of green beans and I intend to freeze one of them. The other I want to use in a cold salad. I've gone back over the 11 different ways I've cooked green beans since starting this blog and and concluded that I prefer them cold. I'll figure out the exact details later. Bacon will probably be involved.

The cabbage will keep so I won't worry about that. The strawberries I need to add to last week's to make up enough for the strawberry/black olive ice cream I'm planning. Not enough kale or cucumber for much. I'll probably just make chips with the kale and pair the cucumber with dill and tuna or salmon for something simple. That leaves the Chinese celery which I need for my mysterious beet recipe from earlier in the post.


Karen said...

The giant beets made an excellent Beet & Beet Greens with Pesto salad - steam the beets (1" pieces makes it quicker), blanch and chop the greens, mix with your favorite pesto. Adding in a handful or two of arugula or mustard greens for zing makes it even better. The Deborah Madison recipe called for a pesto which included capers and kalamata olives - I thought that was too salty.

LaDivaCucina said...

I got your answer, I did two really lovely beet dishes for Easter!

Thanks for the "shout out!" Bill!


The Java Junkie said...

Wonderful food blog! We'd absolutely love to have you join us for Dimsum Sundays!! Check it out here

billjac said...

Some pretty good beet ideas there. I may have to deliberately go out and buy some after the CSA ends to try them out.

Java Junkie, thanks for the compliment! I've been considering joining one of the food blog challenges and I really like the conceptual bent of Dimsum Sundays more than the lets-all-make-the-same-recipe aspect others have. Unfortunately, I'm going to be working Sundays until the end of the semester in late May. I'll check back in with you when my schedule changes as I could definitely use the regular blog fodder in the CSA off-season.