Last week my mom spent a day researching the great-granddaughter of Martha Washington at the library where I work, so we had a lunch date downtown! We walked to a sit-down restaurant where I ordered a falafel with a side dish of celery salad. I enjoyed so much of that chunky crunch that I made up my own salad at home based on the combination of flavors on my lunch plate that day. It’s a great dish to prepare on a night when you crave the catharsis that accompanies chopping vegetables, and now every time I eat it I will remember the intrigue of Mary Custis Lee and that fun lunch.
For the salad:
Chop up celery, dates, and red onions.
Whisk together apple cider vinegar and honey.
Toss it all real good.
Sprinkle crumbled feta over top.
Turn a side dish into a meal:
Add crispy bacon and/or roasted chickpeas to the pile.
You didn’t think I just took pictures of the ground cherries, did you? When I gave the Wabash county farmer three dollar bills for a box of ground cherries, he kindly handed me a Kennedy half-dollar in return, along with a photocopied paper collage of hand-typed recipes. I felt like I won a prize, and I wasn’t even playing a game. I went with the one called Anna’s Ground Cherry Pie and changed up the filling due to the fact that I didn’t have any lemons on hand, and because I thought that ginger would be a nice complement to the fruit. I believe the product was a pineapple upside-down cake/cherry pie hybrid. Delicious with canned air cream and fizzy ginger beer.
Ginger Ground Cherry Pie Filling
3 cups ripe ground cherries
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon butter
1 cup water
1-2 tablespoons ground tapioca
Cook everything but tapioca over medium heat for about 5 minutes. Mix in tapioca and continue to stir until thickened. Remove from heat and cool.
While the filling cools, prepare the dough (I halved the recipe, because I only needed a top crust). Once filling is cool, pour into an unbaked pie shell (or in my case a buttered casserole dish). Cover with top crust and seal the edges. Bake at 400-degrees for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350-degrees and continue to bake for 25 minutes.
Pie Crust from The Amish Cook… she uses apple cider vinegar in her crust, which I think is nice. I also sub unsalted butter for shortening from time to time.
In a parking lot on a card table before a rusty pickup truck.
Nestled beside zucchini logs and onion bundles.
Spilling from a flimsy wooden box.
Pocket-size paper lanterns?
Husks grass to blush.
Petite globe fruit packages.
Green apple, roasted pineapple flesh.
New ritual for the summer pre-meal ceremonies.
Shucking corn, snapping beans, unwrapping ground cherries.
Patriotic pudding, why not? The recipe below is my first attempt at creating a dairy/soy/egg-free pudding. My main modifications to the traditional vegan pudding recipes I found are substituting granulated sugar with pure maple syrup and using rice milk. I have yet to express my love of pudding on this blog, but that day will soon come. In the meantime, I would love to hear about any and all of your favorite puddings.
Vegan Vanilla Bean Pudding (4 servings)
1/3 cup pure maple syrup (I am trying this part next with honey)
4 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 cups rice milk (use any kind of milk you have)
1/4 vanilla bean scrapings
Mix maple syrup, cornstarch, and salt in a saucepan. Gradually incorporate the rice milk. Stir constantly to avoid bumps.
Cook the mix over low heat. Stir constantly until thickened (hang in there, it will happen!). Cook for an additional 3 minutes, stirring a little less.
Take off of the heat and add vanilla. Cool on the stovetop for about ten minutes, stirring every now and then. Pour pudding into serving dish(es) and refrigerate for about 2 hours or until you can’t wait any longer!
Add fruit/whipped topping/granola/cookies/whatever, and enjoy.
The hint of maple in the pudding paired with the blueberries tasted like eating a blueberry pancake with a different texture. In the future, I think I will use it more like a glaze for dessert pizza or chilled berry tarts. The flavor was most enhanced by using scrapings from a vanilla bean, but you could use any extract of your choosing to perk up the flavor with fun combinations.
Purple is one bridge between warm and cool on the color wheel. I happen to think it is a nice color to see in the morning, like spotting a purple martin out the breakfast window. Here, I use fruit powder made from freeze dried blueberries to make a breakfast pudding that is not only creamy, but also naturally purple. This recipe is for those who love a fruity rice pudding minus the fruit chunks. Of course you may easily adapt it with any type of whole fruit (fresh, frozen, or freeze dried) and spices you enjoy.
1/2 cup cooked brown rice
1/2 cup rice milk
1/4 c freeze dried blueberries
1/4 t ground cinnamon
1/4 t ground cardamom
1 t honey, optional
lemon zest, optional
1) Pulverize the freeze dried blueberries into a powder using a coffee grinder/food processor/rolling pin over baggie. 2) Measure the rest of the ingredients into a small saucepan and stir. 3) Set the stove-top to medium-high heat. Stir often and bring to a soft boil. 4) Boil and stir for about 5 minutes until thick and creamy. 5) Enjoy a warm sweet breakfast treat for one (double or quadruple the measurements based on your company). Pair with a complementary chilled fruit for contrast of flavor, temperature, and color.
P.S. I started posting on this blog one year ago with another blueberry treat. Thanks to all who visit here, it is fantastic to relate with you!
I never met a pancake I didn’t like, and I met a tasty new one this weekend. After flagging the recipe at SweetFineDay over a year ago, I finally got around to making Mark’s Yeast-Raised Pancakes. I remember reading the entry from the Pastry Chef of Whimsy & Spice and thinking to myself, those sound too good to be true: lighter, fluffier, slightly-yeasty pancakes that are ready to cook when you wake up?
Believe it, folks. Whip up the batter before bedtime and by morning you will find that your recipe has raised overnight! All that remains is cook time.
I burned the first few, because my skillet was too hot. After turning the dial down to between the 2 & 3, the pancakes puffed up and cooked throughout while staying golden on the tops and bottoms. The addition of ginger syrup and oranges to the yeasty pancake plate was reminiscent of a Belgian White beer brewed in orange peel. Welcome to the breakfast table at Summerflavorville.
Knowing that I would have to extract myself for work this weekend, I had a holed up day yesterday that started with the easiest, tangiest biscuits on the planet. Last week my mom asked me, “have you ever used self-rising flour?” Me: Yes, in a supereasy baby food cupcake recipe. “Well, this biscuit recipe calls for just two ingredients: self-rising flour and sour cream.” Two ingredient (I suppose you can argue the case that self-rising flour is more than “one ingredient” but humor me) biscuits?! Say no more. I tried it out with an added lemon kick. They were so tender and tart and comforting with raspberry jam and hot tea. I have all sorts of plans for this biscuit base now.
Three Ingredient Lemon Biscuits
Enhanced from the recipe in Endangered Recipes
Makes 10 or so
Preheat oven to 425-degrees
(Using a fork) mix together 1 C self-rising flour, 1 C sour cream, juice & zest of 1 Lemon
Turn out onto floured surface and roll to preferred thickness (sticky dough – just keep extra flour on hand)
Bake about 12 minutes
You too can prevent recipe extinction!
After finding a ripe mango at the store the other night, I made a stripped down version of an Ottolenghi recipe. I have been salivating over the photos in his latest cookbook entitled Plenty since I got it a few weeks back. The dish I ended up with reminds me of the dried chile lime mango snacks I like so much, and the next time I make it I will use a hotter pepper. Maybe even add the thai/anise basil to mix it up a bit.
Tropical, hearty, zesty, hot/cold noodle bowl!
Adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s recipe with aubergines
On the stove top, warm together 1/2 C rice vinegar, 3 T sugar, and 1/2 t salt until the sugar dissolves.
Remove from the heat and add fresh red chile, chopped. Once cool, add the juice of 1-2 limes.
Cook 8 oz. soba noodles in salted boiling water about 7 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold running water. Dry on a dish towel.
Slice up a fresh mango and toss everything together. Good to eat right then and also cold out of the fridge.
“The refreshing nature of the cold buckwheat noodles, the sweet sharpness of the dressing and the muskiness of the mango that make it so pleasing…”