Simple. Fresh. Local

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world." JRR Tolken

Month: November, 2010

Skillet Bread

I’ve been eying this quinoa skillet bread from 101cookbooks.com for a few months now and finally got around to making it. The prep is super easy and the result is a smooth, rich, bread with a bit of a crunch from the corn meal and quinoa. And I happen to love anything cooked in a skillet, there’s something so lovely and authentic about it. My broiler is ridiculously over powered so the bread turned out really authentic (if authentic is a general term for slightly burned) but it still tasted delicious with some goat butter, honey and a grind of sea salt.

Roasted Butternut Squash Soup, Kale Chips and Pumpkin Seeds

Tis the season for endless squash and pumpkin roasting. I’ve been making so much soup lately and have to say butternut squash and pumpkin soup are unbeatable. They both wrap up the cold weather in a sweet and savory envelope and allow me to relax under a blanket after a long day.

Baked kale, toasted pumpkin and butternut squash seeds, and butternut squash soup

Oven at 425 degrees

Kale: Rinse Kale, drizzle with olive oil, grind on sea salt, squeeze half a lemons juice…bake until slightly browned and crispy (about 5 or 10 minutes, just keep track and check often.)

Seeds: Same drill as the kale: add olive oil, salt, and lemon. Roast for about 15-25 minutes or until they’re a little bit caramelized and browned. Again check often there’s nothing worse than burnt kale and pumpkin seeds.

Butternut squash soup: Cut up your squash, fill a 2-inch deep pan halfway with water and submerge the squash (skin side up) Bake until the squash is tender (depending on your squash size 30-45 min or so). Put two tablespoons of butter (I use goat butter) add a chopped, whole onion. Cook for a few minutes, add 2 cloves of chopped garlic, and if you like a few chunks of fresh ginger. Cook a few more minutes and then scrape all the squash out into your soup pot. Cook for 5 or so minutes, then add 4 cups of water (I add more or less depending on squash size). Bring to a gentle boil, simmer, then puree in your blender. Salt and pepper to taste. Important: if you do not want to suffer from butternut squash burns like I did the first time, cover the hole in the top of the blender with a dish towel.

I eat the soup with the bacon from our friends pig, chopped up, and oyster mushrooms browned in the bacon fat. It is also incredible with goat cheese, pumpkin and butternut squash seeds, bits of the roasted kale, and fresh herbs like cilantro.

My shot glass of soup, seeds and kale...dinner perfected.

Alien Transmissions

“We’ve been waiting a long time to make this record” says Trevor Garrod, “In a band like ours we have so many songs that we play and love but never had a chance to record in the studio. It’s almost as if we’ve loved these songs too much and were afraid to encase them forever behind the iron bars of a vacuum sealed, shrink wrapped studio album.” Garrod sums up the band’s change of attitude with these final thoughts, “We have come to realize that we can only truly set these beloved tunes free by putting them all down on a record. We are releasing them into the wild. We are casting them out to sea. We are ‘Looking West’ into the setting sun and launching them into outer space. These songs are messages in bottles washed up on foreign shores, alien transmissions from distant worlds, memories from our fading youth, and reminders of our endless and repetitious search for love and freedom.”

I need a new vocabulary to talk about Las Tortugas. I have no adequate words.

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