I really love arugula, so when my CSA share came with a bag of two different kinds, I was ecstatic. I planted some in my garden, but it’s still very tiny. I’ve been craving arugula all winter long. If you haven’t tried arugula, you’re in for a treat. It’s incredibly flavorful–kind of peppery, but distinct. It’s definitely assertive without being overpowering. Arugula goes exceptionally well with beans (especially white beans), certain fruits (pears, peaches, […]
Cream of Fennel and Zucchini Soup with Fennel Pollen
Fennel became one of my favorite vegetables a few years ago. We like to buy a bulb or two every so often as a special treat. It’s not always easy to find at the grocery stores here in Utah like it was when we lived in New York. Sadly, all the fennel I planted drowned in our heavy spring rains. I was so excited when what I thought was fennel started poking up in random […]
(I love a good pun. Get it? Asparagus tips? I know. I’m hilarious.) Asparagus is in season. It’s a favorite veggie of the Johnson household. Most things you’ll read say to use asapargus the day you buy it. It doesn’t have a long shelf life once it’s been cut and shipped however far to your grocer’s produce section. You’ll find it on sale this time of year, so you might be tempted to stock up […]
Slow-Cooker White Beans
Cooking dry beans at home in a slow-cooker is much more economical than buying canned beans. Plus–you can infuse the beans with different herbs and spices that will make your bean dishes taste even better. I prefer using my slow-cooker because I find the beans turn out more uniformly cooked and I don’t have to babysit a simmering pot all day. Slow-Cooker White Beans Ingredients: 1 lb. dry white beans (navy or Great Northern) 1 […]
Have You Tried: Tomatillos?
One of my favorite fruits/veggies is the tomatillo. My advice? Try them as soon as possible. Tips: Select tomatillos that are firm, green and about the size of a golf ball. Larger ones are fine, too, but I’ve found the smaller ones to be a little better. You will probably see them in the produce department still in their papery husks. The husks are easy to peel back when you are selecting tomatillos to buy. […]
Have You Tried: Celeriac?
You may have never heard of celeriac, or it may be one of your favorite vegetables. In any case, this knobby, ugly root is probably one of the most delicious vegetables you will ever eat. Underneath the tough skin is a smooth, creamy flesh with a flavor reminiscent of parsley and celery. More popular in Europe and the UK, it can be hard to find in supermarkets in the U.S., and is quite pricey to […]
Have You Tried: Apriums?
I am a little late in posting about Apriums. I actually bought these back in June at the beginning of summer and here we are now in August. It doesn’t matter. Next year be sure to keep an eye out and pick some up to try. Apriums are one of those hybrids of plums and apricots. Unlike a pluot, the aprium is 3/4 apricot and 1/4 plum. Apriums maintain almost all of their apricot parent’s […]
How To Use a Molcajete
This, my friends, is a molcajete. I received this as a birthday gift in 2004 from some dear friends. My friend, a very good cook in his own right, hauled this and one for himself, all the way from Mexico to NY. It’s as heavy as it looks. Fast forward 3+ years, I am finally getting around to learning how to use a molcajete. Now I am addicted! What is a Molcajete? The traditional Mexican […]
Have You Tried: Hazelnuts?
Hazelnuts are a delicious nut that pair well with chocolate and coffee. They are very popular in Europe and are becoming more popular here in the US. For more info on hazelnuts (read: I’m too tired to write my own little ditty about them) head on over to Wikipedia. I’ll never forget my first experience with hazelnuts. I think Ferrero Rocher are still my favorite nut truffle. I like them anytime of day or night, […]
Toasting Hazelnuts 101
Toasting hazelnuts is the perfect way to intensify and enhance their natural flavor. Start with shelled hazelnuts. Pick through them to remove any damaged nuts. Lay the nuts on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake in a 350 degree oven for between 10 to 20 minutes. The papery skins will start to split. Some may be more stubborn and require a little extra time. Shake the pan to turn the nuts over for […]