At 2 a.m. I was still in the kitchen. Peach jam in the canner, tomato jam out of the canner, three trays of fruit leather in the oven, tomatoes and peaches in the dehydrator, prepping zucchini relish. This is what I always forget in those dreamy, carefree spring months when I plant my garden or sign up for a CSA (or, this year, do both): The harvest season is also a season of all-out frenzy.
This recipe is here to help. You will find both emotional and practical relief as you reduce two truly gargantuan zucchini to five tidy pints of the hot dog relish you remember from childhood.
Pile it onto a field roast sausage with that better-than-ketchup (and I don’t say that lightly) tomato jam and a beery mustard, and you’ll almost forget about the boxes of ripe pears in the basement still awaiting your attention.
For the most part I’m a lazy cook, which is why I don’t get along too well with fava beans.
If you have it in you to shuck the beans from the pod, simmer them briefly and then peel each and every single bean, more power to you. You are now ready to make some elegant little appetizer that will be gone in two bites, like this fava bean and arugula crostini or that fava and ricotta bruschetta. (That second recipe recommends having a friend do the work for you, which is at least a step in the right direction.)
If you don’t have it in you to do all that work, this recipe is for you. It neatly foists the labor of excavating the tender beans straight onto your guests, providing a lively to start to your dinner party as your guests roll up their sleeves and forge a camaraderie based on their mutual amazement at your laziness. Provide a tiny bowl of good salt for dipping the beans, napkins, and a bowl for discarded pods and bean skins.Continue reading →
I would like to write a love song entitled “Five-Minute Sauces That Make it a Meal.” “It” being whatever else you have to put on the table. Whether it’s a salsa or a savory mayonnaise, a compound butter or a pesto, the key components of a great sauce are flavor, flavor, and flavor. And the results are worth singing about.
This Italian parsley sauce delivers. The basic recipe combines parsley, capers, lemon, a shallot, and garlic. Maybe (hopefully) an anchovy. You can vary it a million ways: give it body with day-old bread, add other soft herbs, swap red onion for the shallot and garlic, spice it up with chile peppers, add nuts or vinegar or fancy pickles. Reduce the oil or leave it out altogether (in which case you’ll have more of a sprinkle than a sauce). Whatever ingredients you choose, chop them up and smooth it all together in a slick of olive oil. Serve over anything.We often make this sauce when we grill fish or vegetables, but I hear that it also complements meat nicely. Drizzle it over steamed potatoes. Dunk a crusty chunk of bread in it. Whatever you do with it in the end, it will be worth the five minutes it takes to make. Continue reading →
I have been having a bit of a love affair with this salad this summer.We met casually, in a friend’s back yard. I couldn’t stay away from it, and then I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Our friends came to the Dinner in White and I casually mentioned that they might bring this salad, you know, if they wanted. They did. I sat next to it at the table.
It’s been on my mind ever since. Today, by some stroke of luck, J was working from home, the baby was napping, and the older girls weren’t home yet. We took full advantage of that rare quiet moment together. By grilling a bunch of curly kale and having this salad for lunch.
I’m sorry I’ve kept it from you for so long, but it’s not too late. Clear your calendar of any other rendezvous you’ve planned. You too will fall in love with this salad this weekend.Continue reading →
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I’m starting to feel rushed now that summer’s days are numbered. I never told you about my favorite summer cocktails! We haven’t even talked yet about whether to drench tomatoes in brown butter! We’ve hardly grilled together at all, except for a lonely piece of fish and those eggplants. Tune in next summer, friends, because some of those may have to wait.
But this broccoli can’t wait. Besides, broccoli is a vegetable that will come along right into fall with us. And once you taste this grilled broccoli, you’ll be firing up the grill every chance you get, even after summer’s gone.Continue reading →
Tonight we went to a friend’s birthday party. A keg of good beer, a smoky grill, a swing in the pear tree, little girls running everywhere. After dark, there were birthday candles and fireworks. This is the salad to bring to a party like that.Continue reading →