Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Paris Perfect

We arrived in Paris on the same day, Nina from Germany, me from the U.S.

Nina came with her mom, me with my wonderful fellow yoga & art retreaters. Yes. A yoga retreat in Paris -- perfect!


I snapped this on our first night.  The cool, cloudy weather made for beautifully moody shots.  This was my favorite because the clouds thinned in a small halo around the beautiful structure.  As we said through most of the trip:  *le sigh*

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Baked Peas? Yes, Seriously. So. So. Good. Another Recipe I Found on Pinterest: Baked Peas with Tarragon, Yogurt and Pistachios

From the wonderful blog 101 Cookbooks. Heidi, the wonderful chef-photographer of 101cookbooks credits this recipe to chef Eric Gower and his newest book, The Breakaway Cook.
I served this (to myself) with a simple soy sauce salmon.  It is now in my rotation of favorites -- bake a batch and have great leftovers for a day or two. Most excellent straight outta the fridge, too. The Pinterest picture was pretty (don't even try to tell me you don't pick a recipe by its yummy looking photo) and then I looked at the ingredients -- all things I liked, and actually usually have on hand.  And I was intrigued by the whole baking-peas-at-500-degrees-thing. 
Pistachios were unsalted, shelled meats from MOM's Organic Market's spectacular bulk bins.
Heidi Swanson writes: "[Eric Gower's] baked pea recipe (Baked Peas with Tarragon, Yogurt, and Pistachios to be exact) immediately caught my eye. Creamy tarragon spiked yogurt pistachio sauce combined with sweet green peas. No disappointment here - it was easy, delicious, and you could use any leftover pistachio dressing in a hundred different ways (salads, sandwich spread, dip, etc). I suggest you make double the dressing.
"Thank you for the fantastic book Eric! I hope everyone else enjoys it as much as I'm sure I will."

Thank you, Heidi, Eric and the random pinner from whom I got this!
I used frozen peas from Trader Joes.  I always have a bag or two for soups and to ice my right knee after working out.

Ok, this is a crappy photo but I wanted you to see what it looks like baked -- browning on the the top.  And next time I will wipe the yogurt mixture off the sides of the pan so it takes a prettier picture.
Voila!  So, so yummy. That's one of my favorite dishes.  I only have one of them.  Bought it in Tokyo in the restaurant supply district.  Where I also purchased a serious quantity of plastic food.  Because it cracks me up. 
The recipe as it appears on Heidi Swanson's blog.

Baked Peas with Tarragon, Yogurt, and Pistachios

Heidi's tip:  If you can't find Greek yogurt, strain some plain yogurt through cheesecloth over a bowl for an hour to thicken it up - delicious.

1 pound frozen baby peas
1/2 cup loosely packed fresh tarragon leaves (I used thyme)
2 scallions, white and green parts, chopped
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/4 cup Greek yogurt
1/2 cup chopped pistachios
sea salt to taste

Preheat the oven to 500F. Put the peas in a clay pot or a small Dutch oven and gently heat them on the stove until they thaw, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, put the tarragon, scallions, olive oil, yogurt, and 1/4 cup of the pistachios into a blender and puree. Gently mix into the peas, sprinkle the top with extra chopped pistachios (Heidi note: season with a pinch of salt, or to taste). Bake for about 15 minutes - about the time the top will begin to brown. Remove and serve in your best serving bowl.
Serves 4 or 5.


Heidi Swanson's blog:  101 Cookbooks
Eric Gower's blog:  The Breakaway Cook
Eric Gower's vook: The Breakaway Japanese Kitchen (4.99 -- I just downloaded it)
My Pinterest recipes board: The Yum Board(s)
MOM's Organic Market (aka My Organic Market) Local in MD, VA & DC

Happy Day, friends!
Yours, in Saturday sunshine,

Friday, March 16, 2012

Is There A Better Job in the World Than Cookbook Recipe Tester? Besides Professional Pinner?

I think not.  

I love  and so do thousands of other people.  Do you already follow it? I love Jaden's recipes as well as reading about her family life, particularly their adventures in raising their own chickens.

When I read that Jaden's compensation for testers is she will "forever owe you my eternal love and gratitude," I was so in.  Put it on my card: Will work for eternal love and gratitude.  
Really, it is easy Asian cooking and if you know me, or you are my husband, you know I love Asian food.  And if you are, indeed, my husband, you only like Chinese, but I love Japanese, Thai, Korean, and Vietnamese, too.  Oh, and I drive you crazy because I like to go for foodtainment (teppanyaki) -- the hibachi style Japanese where the chef prepares the food right in front of you. And throws shrimp in your mouth and makes a volcano of fire with the concentric rings of a halved onion. 

Back to recipe testing.  The other night I made this. Note that it was night, therefore the picture has terrible color, but the soup in real life was much prettier -- filled with healthy fresh veggies.
In my favorite blue dish that I carried back from Japan.
I made this dish, too, another soup, in a miso based broth -- Loved this one! (below)

Gratuitous cat shot.  One of my useless feline assistants.  They provide entertainment. When they aren't sleeping.
Back to food.  Dish number three, eggs with oyster sauce -- holy moly, it was delicious.  Proving that it doesn't have to look perfect be super tasty.
These first two photos (above and below), the eggs look a bit mangled, but they are the better photos.
Oh, yummy.
Here the eggs are prettier but the photo isn't as good.  Take your pick and start fantasizing about Jaden's new cookbook!
In the meantime you can check out her other recipes and if you don't already read her blog, you definitely should add it to your rotation -- her photography is beautiful and writing is just right and very accessible.

Off to meet one of my blogger-girl-crushes this afternoon.  More on that later, taters. (Edit note:  We missed each other today, bummer but I look forward to us stalking each other another time)
Yours, in blogger bliss,