Butternut caponata

February 17, 2012 § 24 Comments

I was thinking of calling this butternata, which, to me, makes it sound like it is a sonata of or about butter, which sounds bizarre and wonderful.  Don’t you think?  But, I didn’t want to mislead anyone.  There is no butter involved here – though a generous hand with the olive oil more than makes up for that – except of the ‘nut squash variety.

And, speaking of butternut squash, have I told you about my friend and the bulk squash episode?  I probably have already.  But, I consider us all old friends here now, which means you’re going to have to listen to my stories, whether or not you’ve already heard them, and laugh and gasp and nod in all of the right places.  I can’t wait.

We have a friend who, one fall when he and his wife lived near us, tagged onto our CSA to buy a bulk order of winter squash.  And bulk was what he received.  I’m not even quite sure how many pounds of squash he ordered, but it was on a magnitude you’d usually associate with a grocer’s.  Joel is piping in, “it was probably, like, a hundred pounds. At least.”

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Pasta with eggplant, tomatoes, and ricotta

August 18, 2011 § 24 Comments

Did you know that eggplants kick their blossoms off if they don’t get fertilized?  Just kick them off!  Like a bouncer unceremoniously tossing an unruly guest, by the collar, out into the back alley.  “And stay out!”  I know this now, after a bit of internet gardening-forum perusing, gasping, re-searching, and confirming.

As you may well have imagined, I developed a sudden, keenly focused, interest in the subject after I kept finding the blossoms of our eggplant lying scattered about on the porch below it, completely open and intact, un-chewed upon, as if they had been strewn by an industrious flower girl.  I had missed the wedding though.

At first I suspected birds or insects.  I imagined little beetles and ants popping the blossoms off and tossing them to the ground, laughing and egging each other on.  Like the insect version of cow tipping.  Until, finally, one day it happened right in front of my eyes.  One moment the blossom was on the plant, and the next it just fell off.  As if the eggplant simply didn’t want it anymore and was cutting it off, disowning it, which, I guess, in a sense, is what was happening.

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