Sunday, May 31, 2009

2nd Annual Memorial Day Picnic

I love picnics--I believe I've mentioned them a time or two on this blog. I find them to be a singularly pleasant way to spend one's time. I don't have them as much as I'd like (though I'd like to change that this summer--picnics in Clark Park, Philly readers?). I did, however, hold my 2nd annual Memorial Day picnic in King of Prussia with my dear GF and 2 friends.

I restrained myself this year and tried to not make obscene quantities of food (I know, uncharacteristic, right. But there's a recession on, people). The dear GF contributed deviled eggs, which are really only devilish in taste--or heavenly, depending on your perspective. I love them. They are also the only things I didn't get a picture of.

I made the parmesan crisps, from Ted Allen's book, that I made last year, because they were such a hit. They really are the simplest, most flavorful cocktail cracker ever, even if they are a little dubious-looking.

I also continued my love affair with asparagus--into its 5th week, I think, and counting!--and roasted it. Some of it I roasted plain, because simplicity really is the best recipe, especially for something so divine as asparagus. But for the other half, I wanted something truly decadent. I slathered paper thin slices of prosciutto with chevre and then wrapped them around 2 or 3 asparagus stalks. Then I slid them into the oven to roast beside their brethren. The result was a salty creamy pleasure of the most hedonistic kind. They positively oozed luxury.

And, as my final dish, I made a dessert. That's something I don't often do!! I finally used the rhubarb that I purchased so long ago in a strawberry rhubarb crumble. Let me tell you, this crumble, with its flour and walnut topping, was 1,000 times simpler and more pleasing than a pie. Not only did I not worry about ruining a pie crust, but the fruit was really showcased in the dish. The brightness of the fresh strawberries and the tanginess of the rhubarb were both complemented by the addition of lemon zest. It was also delightfully oozy. It was possibly that most successful baked good I've ever made.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


Well, there's not much to write about--I've recently been making uninspired meals. But the 2nd Annual Memorial Day Picnic is coming up, so there will be much to mention next week. To tide you over, I am going to write about something near and dear to my heart:

Breakfast. Namely, the breakfast above, which I eat almost every day of my life. I love it. The cheese is an addition of that day only. Otherwise, there is 1 fried egg, with the edges lacey and the yolk a little runny. 1 peice of toast, lightly toasted, with butter. 1 vegetarian breakfast sausage. And I usually eat it in this order: the whites of the egg on the toast, then the yolk on the sausage. All accompanied with a mug of strong, sweet black tea with milk. It brings me continuous joy.

Monday, May 11, 2009


I like simple things. Like....asparagus! It is asparagus season in Philadelphia, and thank goodness. I've missed it while it was gone.

I've been eating a lot of asparagus--at least a pound a week, which is a lot if you remember that i am only 1 person! I've steamed it and sauteed it. I toyed with roasting it, but I was lazy that night, so I steamed it again. There is something irresistable about asparagus, lemon, and a pat of butter. No amount of fancy preparations can compare.

Marinades are simple too. I'm amazed that I haven't put them to use before!! They are a blessing for a cook who is pretty scared of giving herself food poisoning--one of the reasons that I cook meat, at best, maybe once a week. Usually less. I marinaded two turkey breast cutlets in a prepared lemon marinade that I bought on a whim from the grocery story. The marinade was too sweet, but after resting overnight in it, the turkey was tender and delicious, especially when splashed with hot sauce.

Leftovers=also simple. I had 1 cutlet left over the next day. I put pasta on the stove to cook, and then turned my attention to other components. Queso para freir was cubed and fried in a hot fan. Asparagus, chopped into 1-2 inch section, followed sauteed with olive oil and a shake of garlic salt. Cubed turkey meat was added, warmed, and then the whole combined with the cheese and pasta. Simple, quick, delicious, and incorporating asparagus. What more did I need?