Grilled chorizo and flatbread with charred vegetables

August 9, 2012 § 14 Comments

Ok, I’m going to come out and say it.  There’s a certain point every summer at which I start to get a little annoyed by the sheer bounteousness of summer produce.  I mean, I love it, I really do, but it’s just so freaking beautiful and abundant.  It’s kind of like that person you know who is really smart and talented and beautiful and then they’re nice on top of it, and and eventually you’re like, “come on!  Can’t you at least be neurotic?!”  I get a little bit that way about summer vegetables.  (Please tell me this doesn’t make me a horrible person, though, clearly, I have issues.)

We put summer produce on sun-soaked a pedestal, cooing over it and the way it needs only a little sprinkling of salt, maybe a drizzle of good olive oil.  We rhapsodize perfect garden tomatoes or fresh sweet corn like we do our first love.  And it’s all true, and completely deserved.  Fresh summer produce is miraculous.  It really would be a shame to do much more than serve it in a minimalist state, an ode to the garden.  And the essays that have been written on the subject, well, I have nothing to add to them that hasn’t been said. « Read the rest of this entry »

Spicy chicken salad

July 20, 2012 § 14 Comments

A while back, I was walking with one of my younger brothers and having a conversation.  We were ambling past a variety of food stands and restaurants and the conversation went something like this:

Brother: Oh, they’re using the old sriracha trick.  Classic move.  Nice.  And sriracha mayo, that stuff is so good.  I swear, sriracha makes anything delicious.

Me: Seriously.

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Roasted vegetable tartines

September 11, 2010 § 8 Comments

Tartine is one of those many French words that sounds beautiful when said by a native speaker, but is rather difficult to get out when you’re someone trying to learn the language.  The particular combination of vowels and consonants with that French “r” right in the middle gets stuck in the roof of your mouth a bit like a spoonful of peanut butter.  You had best learn to say it, however, if you plan on eating breakfast anywhere in that lovely country (unless you’re having a croissant, the pronunciation of which people seem to struggle with just as much anyway).  Traditionally, a tartine is simply an open faced piece of baguette, most often smeared with butter and jam.  This is what I had for breakfast every single sparkling Parisian morning (because it turns out that Paris sparkles, even when it’s gray and drizzly) while I studied there back in college.  Two baguette halves with copious amounts of butter and confiture de framboises, dipped in my coffee.  And then I would be ravenously hungry again within about half an hour.  Scandinavians are bred to require protein at breakfast.  Oh well.

Even though they never filled me up, I loved tartines.  And even more so on the day I realized, “what the heck?!  Why not have an open faced baguette sandwich with something more than just jam?”  (I know, so revelatory, right?)  Much deliciousness ensued.

I like to think of this particular creation as what would happen if an eggplant Parmesan sub studied abroad in France, got a little comfy, and eventually became an expat there.  It has an affected French accent and attempts an air of sophistication, but in the end it can’t help but be overflowing with gooey, bubbling melted mozzarella.  “Deep fry zee eggplant?!  Mais non!  I couldn’t possiblee.  I vil roast eet wiz some peppers and tomatoes, maybe add a leetle chevre and Dijon.  But somesing eez meesing…Oh yes, mozzarella!  Sweet!  I’m so gonna melt that all over the place…Nice.”

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