What I’m Cooking and Other Things (a link love entry)

August 17, 2012

You might think that without a day job, I’d be posting here all the time.  I wish it worked that way.  Due to budget (or lack thereof), I haven’t been doing nearly as much experimenting.  Instead, I’ve been menu planning and making things from other people’s recipes to save money.

That doesn’t mean I’ve been eating poorly by any means.  It just means an extra emphasis on what’s in season (tip: go at the end of the farmer’s market, see what’s left, and make some deals – most farmers will give you crazy discounts if you buy a lot of something or if you clear out their leftover stock), and on planning ahead to keep spending in check.  That being said, here’s what I’m cooking lately:

Soup & Salad

Coconut-Tomato Soup - An excellent spin on classic tomato soup.  The coconut milk (use full-fat, not light, as the recipe suggests) adds a wonderful creaminess and the garam masala brings a nice depth of flavor.

Heirloom Tomato Salad - This salad is delightful.  The mixture of roasted and fresh tomatoes makes for a great texture and a flavor that is deep but not overpowering.  The recipe comes to me courtesy of the lovely V, who linked me to it when one of the farmers at market gave me (yes gave me) all of his leftover heirlooms (to the tune of about 4 pounds).  I made some changes when I made the salad: skip the sugar in dressing the tomatoes for roasting, skip the capers and mozzarella in favor of adding lemon juice to the chive oil and using feta in the salad.

Side Dishes

Sage Mashed Sweet Potatoes - Fried sage leaves really sing in this savory, autumnal vegetable mash.  My sage plants are busting out all over the place, and I needed to use them!  Nix the brown sugar in favor of half as much raw, local honey and use about 3x as much sage.

Beets - My buddies at Station 220 show how to cook beets for use in salads.  I make beets this way about once a week, and keep them, undressed, but seasoned with salt and pepper, in a container in the fridge.  That way, I can throw them in salads, puree them, toss them with bacon, or whatever.  A great way to make use of a tasty, versatile vegetable, and to save yourself time in preparation.

Main Dishes

Shakshuka (Tomato-Poached Eggs) - Make this.  That is all.

Dessert

Almond Panna Cotta with Peaches - A nice, high-fat, low-sugar dessert.  With gelatin!  My only changes: use 3/4 cup yogurt (full-fat Greek) and 1-1/2 cups of cream.  Double the almond extract.  Skip the sugar on the peaches; instead, toss them in a little lemon juice/zest and let them macerate.

Other Links:

Primal Toad is having a pretty serious giveaway.  There are lots of great prizes totaling over $1200 in value.  You should check it out and maybe enter it.  I’m particularly psyched about the prospect of winning a $100 gift certificate to US Wellness Beef, and the other edibles.  The books and all are exciting, too, but in my budgetary pinch, free foods sound awesome.

I’m hooked on a new blog. Peter Attia at The Eating Academy brings the science.

At last, an affordable standing desk hits the market.

And finally, as I look for day jobs (and wear dressy clothes to interviews), I’ve been looking for nice, normal-looking shoes that maintain the all-important zero-drop heel and splay-friendly toe box. I think I found them.

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