Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Yeasted Whole Wheat-Vanilla Waffles with Coconut Whipped Cream + Record Shopping & Sky Gazing.

Yeasted Whole Wheat-Vanilla Waffles 
Coconut Whipped Cream
(+ Record Shopping & Sky Gazing).
waffle therapy.

Last week was kind of shitty. Lots of unanticipated stress and weirdness. Lots of scattered thoughts and interrupted sleep, lots of anxious heart pounding, lots of forgetting to eat for an entire day. Nothing earth shattering, just...disrupting. So the weekend called for some serious food therapy, hence waffles, and some serious soul therapy, hence flipping through bins of musty old records. 
Both helpful in their own ways, though one smells significantly better. 

A little riff on an old favorite because, as we all know, 
everything's better with coconut. 

Yeasted Whole Wheat-VanillaWaffles 

with Coconut Whipped Cream
(serves 4/ makes about 12 waffles)

2 14oz cans organic full fat coconut milk,
refrigerated (unopened) overnight
1/2c lukewarm water
1 1/2c whole wheat flour
1c all purpose flour
1/2c unrefined coconut oil
2 1/2tsp active dry yeast
1tsp raw sugar
1/2tsp ground sea salt
1tsp vanilla bean paste (extract will work, too)
2Tbsp ground flax seed + 6Tbsp boiling water
1tsp baking soda

additional 2-3tsp unrefined sugar + 1/2tsp vanilla paste for coconut cream
1c wild blueberries or other fresh fruit, for serving

nice nooks.

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

"Thank You, Summer" Ratatouille + 36 Hours in Midcoast Maine.

good times, (metaphorical) noodle salad.
"Thank You, Summer" Ratatouille
36 Hours in Midcoast Maine.
summer kicks ass.

When I originally posted this recipe just about a year ago my folks were packing up the last of their boxes and getting ready to make the permanent move from Virginia to Maine and I wasn't handling it particularly well. It's hard to let go of a place where so many of your firsts happened. First steps, first words, first kiss, first love, first heartbreak...you know the drill. At the time it felt like the end of an unbearably large number of things; I pulled out of the driveway for the last time
and cried all the way across the blue ridge mountains. 
Melodramatic, I know, but that's how it went down. 
And that's probably why I gave this recipe such a depressing name the first time around. Summer's End Ratatouille?? Sheesh. Shoulda just called it "we all die" vegetable medley... Over the past year I've come to realize that home is where your people are, that past is past, present is present, and memories are yours regardless of where your parents live. I've also come to realize that (as a tidy little bonus) coastal Maine is a pretty kick-ass place for said people to be, especially in the summertime. 
So, in the spirit of newfound emotional maturity,
I'm re-branding this recipe "thank you, summer" ratatouille. 
No melodrama, no sad-sackery. 
Just an unabashed appreciation of the season, while it lasts. 
Knowing full well it'll be back around again soon enough.
Nothing but good times and noodle salad (bonus points if you get that reference).

every little bit of it.

"Thank You, Summer" Ratatouille
now with even less melodrama
(serves 4-6) 

3Tbsp olive oil
2-3Tbsp red wine 
1 large onion (yellow or red), thinly sliced
1 full head of garlic, cloves finely minced
two bell peppers, green red or yellow, sliced thin
Diced eggplant (any variety), about 3-4 cups
1-2 large zucchini, halved lengthwise and cut into thin slices
3-4 medium-sized tomatoes, diced (about 2c)
salt and black pepper to taste
1/2c shredded fresh basil leaves

full recipe here.

And now a few of my favorite Maine-based things:

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Small Batch Spiny Gherkin Pickles & Doin' All The Things.

to old friends and new. 
Small Batch Spiny Gherkin Pickles
Doin' All The Things.
(also, i'm kinda famous now.)
garlicky brine is always the answer.

I stumbled across these Hmong Farms-grown maxixie cucumbers at the Brookline farmers' market last week. After excitedly staring at them for a good two minutes I picked out what looked like a good bunch (?) and brought them to the cashier. My gleeful confusion was not exactly mirrored by the guy who sold them to me, but I would not be deterred. I had no idea what they were or what to do with them but was absolutely certain that they needed to be mine. Find a strange, vaguely Seussian variety of gherkin while doing your weekly produce shopping? 
The only option is to pickle the hell out of it. 

Garlicky Small Batch Spiny Gherkin 
(Maxixie Cucumber) Pickles
(makes one quart or two pints)

1 bunch spiny gherkins (also know as maxixe cucumbers), about 8
1c apple cider vinegar
1/4c water
4 garlic cloves, smashed
1 large head of dried dill, or 2 teaspoons dill seed
1Tbsp kosher salt
1tsp unrefined sugar
1/2tsp brown mustard seeds

Add garlic, mustard seeds and dill seeds to a clean quart canning jar, 
or distribute evenly between two pint jars.
Wash and thoroughly scrub gherkins, then cut lengthwise into quarters or eighths, 
depending on your pickle thickness preference.
Whisk together vinegar, water, salt and sugar until dissolved.
Stuff cucumber slices into jars, pouring water and vinegar mix over top until covered.
Cover jar(s) tightly, give them a good shake, and refrigerate.
The longer they sit, the more the flavors will develop.

all the pickled things.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Bulgur-Lentil Salad with Preserved Lemon, Cucumber and Mint.

true love salad days.
Bulgur-Lentil Salad with 
Preserved Lemon, Cucumber & Mint.
its a forever kind of thing.

I couldn't live without cucumbers. Or, more accurately, I could live without them but their absence would cause me to spiral into an deep, dark food-based depression from which there would be little to no chance of recovery. I'd shuffle around the kitchen, muttering about how good things used to be between us, cucumbers and I. About how I was sure from the first time we met that it was gonna be a long-haul kind of thing. I'd bore my friends with old stories of our perfect summers together, all vine-y, gourd-y love. Of dirty fingernails and straight-from-the-garden goodness. Of Maine vacations spent biting into lemon cucumbers like apples. Love would begin to feel foreign and alienating and I'd stay up nights wondering
how I could have been so wrong in thinking we were forever.

The point of all this rambling is to say that you are my everything, Cucumis Sativus.
Don't ever leave, I'd be lost (and probably pretty annoying) without you.

And not to take anything away from this epic love manifesto,
but preserved lemon and fresh mint are pretty dope, too...