Saturday, September 16, 2017

Wildflour Oven Bread at the Market

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farmfresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company, and plenty of fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including lots of sweet peppers and collard greens (both so delicious roasted on toast or in tacos).

Also this Sunday we're happy to have a new addition to the Market of WildFlour Oven offering wild fermented breads with local whole grains.

If you are a bread enthusiast and were sad to see our local Eugene City Bakery close a couple years ago, now your Sunday market shopping can be completed with some home made loaves from Wildflour Oven. Last week we enjoyed a Sunday dinner of lamb burgers with Fair Valley Farm ground lamb on Wildfour Oven's challah topped with harissa, accompanied by Camas Swale Farm grilled eggplants and sweet peppers and fresh cucumbers and cherry tomatoes topped with lemon crème fraîche sauce. For the week we had delicious sandwiches of grilled vegetables and feta cheese on Wildflour Oven's whole wheat loaf bread. A source of fresh baked bread is a welcome addition to the neighborhood.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Tomato Braised Celery

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm, fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company, and plenty of fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including sweet corn, tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, delicata squash, potatoes, leeks, and celery.

Celery is typically relegated to a supporting role in soups and stews, but apparently for Victorians it was a luxury ingredient displayed ostentatiously in special celery vases. For my beautiful Camas Swale celery bunch, I took inspiration from this tribute to long-cooked vegetables by Samit Nosrat in the New York Times, which reminded me of a Marcella Hazan recipe, deemed genius by food52. Hazan's recipe calls for pancetta to add some umami to the tomatoey braising liquid, but I opted for a few anchovy fillets because I love the flavors of celery and seafood.

If you, like me, happen to have momentarily succumb to the illusion that a kitchen appliance will solve all of your problems associated with anxieties about the impending school year, noxious smoke-filled air, and natural disasters related to climate change, and you recently invested in an Instant Pot, you could use it for this recipe. You could also cook this on the stove top. Either way, it is delicious and very soothing. 

Tomato Braised Celery
adapted from Marcella Hazan
1 bunch celery
2 large shallots, peeled and diced
1/4 cup olive oil
4 anchovy fillets in oil
15 ounce can of peeled and diced plum tomatoes, with their juice
red pepper flakes to taste
salt to tatse

1. Cut off the celery's leafy tops, saving the leaves for another use, and detach all the stalks from their base. Use a peeler to pare away most of the strings, and cut the stalks into pieces about 3 inches long (cutting on a diagonal looks nice). Alternately, if you plan on cooking long past tender (an hour or more), you can skip peeling the strings. 

2. Heat a saute pan over medium heat. Put in the oil and the anchovies and cook, breaking up the anchovies, until they dissolve into the oil. Add the red pepper flakes and stir, and then add the diced shallots. Cook until the shallots are cooked through and golden. 

3. Add the tomatoes with their juice, the celery, and salt, and toss thoroughly to coat well. Adjust heat to cook at a steady simmer, and put a cover on the pan. After 15 minutes check the celery, cooking it until it feels tender when prodded with a fork. The longer you cook them, the softer and sweeter they will become. If while the celery is cooking, the pan juices become insufficient, replenish with 2 to 3 tablespoons of water as needed. If on the contrary, when the celery is done, the pan juices are watery, uncover, raise the heat to high, and boil the juices away rapidly.

To make in an Instant Pot:
Perform step 2 using the Saute function. Press cancel, add the remaining ingredients for step 3, then cook with the pressure cooker function on low pressure for 15 minutes and allow the pressure to release naturally.

Friday, September 1, 2017

Seared Corn and Pepper Salad with Ahi Tuna

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm, as well as fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company. 

Camas Swale Farm will have plenty of summer produce including:
peppers and sweet corn (sear in a warm salad, below) 
celery (for these celery beef lettuce wraps)
leeks and tomatoes (try this leek and cherry tomato clafouti
delicata squash (make what my son calls "squash candy")

My husband and I got to celebrated our anniversary this year viewing the spectacular corona of the total solar eclipse. I even made some eclipse cookies for the event. A week later the stars aligned and we found ourselves kid-free with the chance to whip up a belated anniversary dinner. We seared ahi tuna, corn, and peppers, and served these with sauteed zucchini, cherry tomatoes, black lentils, and a lemon crème fraîche sauce. It was a lovely dinner and then the kids came rushing back into the house to remind us of a couple of the major accomplishments of our marriage. 

Seared Corn and Pepper Salad with Ahi Tuna
serves two
corn and pepper salad
1 ear corn
1 mildly hot pepper
salt to taste

Heat a griddle or large skillet over medium high heat until very hot. Shuck the corn. Place the corn and whole pepper on the skillet and sear. Rotate and sear on all sides until the corn and pepper are partially charred but still a bit crisp. Remove from heat and when cool enough to handle, seed the pepper and cut it into small pieces and cut the corn kernels from the cob. Combine and season with salt to taste. Serve warm.

ahi tuna
1/2 pound ahi tuna steak, cut into in inch wide strips
1 Tbsp olive oil
salt and pepper

Heat a skillet over medium high heat until very hot. Season the tuna with salt and pepper. Add the oil to the pan and when hot, add the ahi strips. Let sear for about 30 seconds per side, turning with tongs. Remove from heat when the interior looks more raw than you like because it will continue to cook. Serve with lemon crème fraîche sauce.

lemon creme fraiche sauce
2 Tbsp crème fraîche
zest of 1 small lemon
juice of 1 small lemon
1/2 tsp honey
2 Tbsp olive oil
salt to taste

Whisk together the crème fraîche, lemon, and honey. While continuing to whisk, add the olive oil slowly to emulsify. Taste and add salt, and more lemon or honey as needed.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Roasted Eggplant and Beans with Marinated Feta

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm, as well as fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company. 

Camas Swale Farm will have plenty of summer produce including melons and watermelons, cucumbers, garlic, salad greens, green beans, carrots, a variety of peppers, and tomatoes. 

For the last few weeks, Camas Swale has had pretty purple mottled dragon tongue beans. To preserve their vibrant colors, I served them raw in a composed salad of farmers market produce, along with a mustardy vinaigrette. 

Another week I paired them with a kindred spirit eggplant, roasted both and served with marinated feta cheese. The colors weren't quite as pretty, but the roasted vegetables were delicious coated with the creamy cheese for a summery alternative to a cheesy gratin.

Roasted Eggplant and Beans with Marinated Feta
roasted vegetables
2 handfuls dragon tongue or regular green beans, stems trimmed
1 large or 2 small eggplants, cut into 1 inch cubes
3 Tbsp olive oil

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees and place in two baking sheets. 

2. Toss the trimmed beans with 1 Tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt. Spread them on one of the hot baking sheets. Roast for about 3 minutes, toss and roast for another 2 minutes until they are slightly charred but still retain some crunch.

3. Toss the cubed eggplant with 2 Tbsp olive oil and a pinch of salt. Spread them on the other hot baking sheet and roast for about 25 minutes, tossing occasionally, until well charred on the outside and soft on the inside. 

4. Arrange on a platter and serve with marinated feta cheese (below).

marinated feta cheese
8 ounce block of feta cheese, cut into 1 inch cubes.
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
1/2 tsp black pepper corns
zest of 1 small lemon
about 1/4 cup of olive oil

Place the feta cheese cubes in a snug fitting bowl. Sprinkle with spices and lemon zest and drizzle over olive oil to submerge. Let marinate at room temperature for at least 30 minutes or longer in the refrigerator. Give the cheese a gentle stir and serve with the roasted vegetables.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Pasta with Chickpeas and Cherry Tomatoes

At the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market this Sunday you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm, as well as fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company. 

Camas Swale Farm will have plenty of summer produce including melons and watermelons, cucumbers, garlic, salad greens, pardon peppers, carrots, and tomatoes.  

This week I used a pint of Camas Swale's pretty heirloom cherry tomatoes to add bursts of color and sweetness to a pot of pasta with chickpeas, employing a cooking method that's become my personal obsession these days. Rather than bothering with boiling a pot of water to cook your pasta, you can simmer it right in the sauce with flavorful bean broth. The end result is the rich flavors of a minestrone soup, but with the texture of al dente pasta. My approach is to cook a pot of beans over the weekend for tacos, salads, or spreads, and then reserve a pint of beans and a quart of bean broth for a quick pasta dinner later in the week. This is the kind of dish that your future self with thank you for teeing up over the weekend.

Pasta with Chickpeas and Cherry Tomatoes
serves four
2 Tbsp olive oil
4 anchovy filets 
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp Aleppo or red pepper flakes (or to taste)
2 Tbsp tomato paste
2 cups cooked chickpeas (instructions below)
3 to 4 cups chickpea broth, plus more boiled water as needed
1 pint cherry tomatoes, rinsed
8 ounces small pasta such as ditalini
chopped parsley for garnish
grated parmesan cheese for serving

Heat a large skillet or shallow pot (for which you have a lid) over medium heat. Also boil a kettle with a couple of cups of water. Add the olive oil and anchovies and break up the anchovies with your cooking spoon as you allow them to melt into the hot oil. Add the minced garlic and and red pepper and allow to cook until the garlic starts to brown and is very pungent. Stir the tomato paste into the flavored oil and allow caramelize for a couple of minutes. Then add the chickpeas and chickpea broth, the cherry tomatoes, and the pasta. Allow the pan to come up to a simmer, lower the heat medium low, and cover the pan. Cook the pasta, stirring frequently to dislodge the pasta pieces that will stick to the bottom of the pan. Keep an eye on the liquid level of the pan to make sure it is slightly soup and add splashes of boiled water as needed, or if it seems too watery then uncover the pan and raise the heat to allow the liquid to boil off. Start checking the pasta after about 8 minutes, but it will likely take a couple more minutes to reach a point where it is just cooked through but still very firm. Turn off the heat, cover the pot, and allow it to sit for a couple more minutes. Uncover, garnish with chopped parsley, and serve immediately with freshly grated parmesan cheese. Enjoy.

Cooked chickpeas
2 cups dried chickpeas
1 tsp baking soda
~8 cups water
1 bay leaf
2 Tbsp kosher salt

Sort and rinse the chickpeas. Place them in a pot with the water, baking soda, and bay leaf. Bring to a very gentle simmer and cook until tender, about 90 minutes depending on the age of the beans. I like to cook beans in a slow cooker, which takes about 3 hours. When the beans are tender, turn off the heat and add 2 Tbsp of kosher salt. Allow to cool. Strain the beans over a large bowl to collect the bean broth. Use the broth and some of the beans for this recipe. Remaining beans or broth can be frozen for later use.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Soba Noodles with Seared Scallions and Shishito Peppers

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market you will find fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm, as well as fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company. 

Camas Swale Farm will have lots of fresh produce: melons and watermelons, strawberries, garlic, salad greens, pardon peppers, carrots, and tomatoes, including heirloom, cherry, and paste (time to start stockpiling sauce for the winter).  

There are certain items one should pick up at the market regardless of your shopping list or menu plans. Our policy is to purchase padron peppers whenever available because they are always a special treat. Similar logic applies to Camas Swale's perfect melons, which don't require a recipe, beyond "eat." Less intuitive might be a bunch of scallions, although pretty purple ones like these are hard to resist.

Lately I've been making a habit of buying a big bunch of scallions and immediately cooking them down in oil into a couple of tablespoons of crisp, sweet, intense flavor. We first tasted these in Shanghai and then recaptured them with the help of Fuchsia Dunlop. It doesn't matter if you have a plan for these at the time, you will simply thank yourself later for having made them. This week we gobbled them up right away as a topping for some soba noodles along with some seared padron peppers, which are essentially the same as shishito peppers so I'm calling them by their Asian name for this dish

Soba Noodles with Seared Scallions and Shishito Peppers
serves four

seared scallions
1 large or 2 small bunched of scallions
1/4 cup neutral oil such as canola
Trim the roots off the scallions. Wack the whites with the side of a large chef's knife to split. Cut into 1 inch lengths. Heat the oil in a skillet or wok over medium high heat. Add the scallions and cook, stirring frequently. Keep cooking the scallions until they are quite browned, but avoid burning them. This will take patience and some nerve, but you will be rewarded with intense flavor. Transfer the scallions and oil to a small bowl.

seared peppers
1 pint padron or shishito peppers
2 Tbsp neutral oil such as canola
sea salt
In the same skillet or wok you used for the scallions, heat the oil over medium high heat. Add the peppers and allow to sear until well browned and blistered on one side. Use tongs to flip and brown the second side. Remove to a bowl and sprinkle with a pinch of sea salt.

300 g (3 circular packets) of soba noodles
2 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp sesame oil

Cook the noodles in salted boiling water until barely cooked through (about 5 minutes). In the meantime, mix the soy sauce and sesame oil in a serving bowl. When the noodles are done, immediately rinse them under cold water and then toss them in the serving bowl. Serve the noodles and top with the seared scallions and scallion oil and the seared peppers. Enjoy.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Pork Chops with Deviled Chard Stems and Chard Gratin

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market there will be fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb from Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm. Also you'll find fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company and fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including melons and watermelons, tomatoes, tomatillos (try this roasted salsa), padron peppers, summer squash, sweet onions, and fresh herbs.

Our family let out a collective squeal of delight last week when we saw the first of Camas Swale's harvest of padron pepper, or what my son refers to as "lucky, unlucky peppers." My husband and I love their intense flavor when seared and salted, and our kids love to watch us eat them, since their variable spiciness level makes each new specimen a gamble.

Along with our padron peppers, we purchased colorful chard, sumptuous heirloom tomatoes, zucchini, onions, and sweet cucumbers from Camas Swale, and some thick boneless pork chops from Fair Valley Farm. 

I love the combination of pork with mustard, so I decided to make a mustardy garnish for our seared pork chops of roasted deviled chard stems. With the chard leaves, I made a variation on this zucchini gratin, but with the addition of a cheesy breadcrumb topping. It all made for another delicious midsummer Sunday evening farmers market feast.

Pork Chops with Deviled Chard Stems
roasted deviled chard stems
Swiss chard stems sliced from 1 bunch of chard and cut into 1 inch pieces
1 small lemon
1 Tbsp dijon mustard
1 Tbsp olive oil
1/2 teaspoon honey
salt and pepper

seared and roasted pork chops
2 thick boneless pork chops
salt and pepper
1 Tbsp olive oil

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. 

2. Peel the lemon with a vegetable peeler and cut into thin strips. Juice the lemon into a medium bowl. Whisk in the mustard, olive oil, and honey. Stir in the chard pieces and lemon peel. Season with a little salt (depending on the saltiness of your mustard) and plenty of black pepper. Transfer to a small baking dish or oven safe skillet. Bake for about 15 to 20 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the stems are fragrant and nicely browned on the edges.

3. Generously season the pork chops with salt and pepper on both sides. Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat until it is very hot. Add 1 Tbsp olive oil to coat the pan. Sear the pork chops at high temperature until nicely browned on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer the pan to the oven and continue cooking for about five minutes until the internal temperature reaches 145 degrees F. 

4. Allow the cooked pork chops to rest for about ten minutes. Serve topped with the deviled chard stems.

Zucchini and Chard Gratin
1 bunch chard leaves, cut into 1 inch strips
1 small onion, diced
1 Tbsp olive oil 
1 medium zucchini, grated
2 eggs
100 g (scan 1/2 cup) crème fraîche (which you can make yourself, or use sour cream)
120 ml (1/2 cup) milk
1 cup bread crumbs
100 g (3.5 ounces) grated gruyère or aged cheddar cheese 
salt and pepper

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. On the stovetop, heat a pan over medium heat. Saute the diced onion in 1 Tbsp olive oil. When the onion is glassy, add the chard leaves. Cook the chard leaves for a couple of minutes until brightly colored but not yet wilted. Season with salt to taste and transfer to a 9x9 inch baking dish. Add the grated zucchini and mix.  

2. In a large bowl, beat the eggs and then mix in the crème fraîche, milk, salt and pepper. Pour the mixture over the chard and zucchini in the baking dish. Cover with bread crumbs and then with the grated cheese.

6. Bake in a 400 degree oven for about 30 minutes until the gratin is nicely browned.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Roasted Lemon Soy Chicken Legs

The Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market is excited to announce that Fair Valley Farm and Fog Hollow Farm have teamed up to bring you fresh eggs and pastured chicken, beef, pork, and lamb every week. Also at the market you'll find fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company and fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including gorgeous heirloom tomatoes (make a pitcher of gazpacho for the hot days ahead), berries, honey and (new this week) melons.

In addition to whole chickens, Fog Hollow Farm offers parted breasts and legs. I purchased a package of legs last week, which I thawed for a few hours in a bowl of warm water and then tossed in a lemon and soy sauce marinade.

Dinner Sunday night was a delicious and easy Farmers Market feast of roasted chicken, kale chips (since the oven was on), fresh heirloom tomatoes and cucumbers and roasted onions with lemony pan juices over rice. 

Roasted Lemon Soy Chicken Legs
2 chicken legs (drumsticks and thighs, about 1.5 lb)
1 large lemon
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp honey
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tsp coarse kosher salt
fresh ground pepper
1 large onion

1. Peel the lemon with a vegetable peeler and cut the peel into thin strips. Juice the lemon. In a glass bowl big enough to hold the chicken, combine the lemon juice and zest, soy sauce, olive oil, honey, garlic cloves, salt and pepper. Cut the chicken legs to separate the drumsticks from the thighs, add them to the bowl and coat them well with the marinade. Cover and marinate in the refrigerator at least 1 hour or overnight.

2. Preheat the oven to 425. Cut the onion into about 16 wedges and arrange on the bottom of a baking pan or pie dish. Arrange the chicken pieces, skin side up, on top of the onions, and drizzle over the marinade. Roast until the chicken is cooked through, basting occasionally with pan juices, about 35 minutes. The onions should char a little at the edges. 

3. Remove the chicken from the oven and let rest 10 minutes. Serve the chicken with the onions and pan juices.

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Zucchini Poppy Seed Muffins

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market, you can expect to find pastured meats (including parted out chicken) and eggs from new Market member, Fog Hollow Farmfresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company and fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including:

cherry tomatoes (make a cherry tomato clafouti)
carrots (riff on this salad with harissa and feta)
summer squashes (make the zucchini muffins below)
salad mix
cabbage (try some stuffed cabbage)

Recently I had a hankering for muffins and a sense of obligation to bake with zucchini. Paralleling the fecundity of summer squash plants, the internet is heavily ladden with zucchini bread recipes. I took inspiration from a couple recipes from Heidi Swanson and Melissa Clark to make these muffins. I incorporated poppy seeds and buckwheat flour into the batter for flavor, and I moved the walnuts to the top for crunch.

The resulting muffins were very tasty with just the right balance of indulgence and virtue, a perfect accompaniment to a midmorning cup of coffee.

Zucchini Poppy Seed Muffins
makes a dozen muffins

250 grams grated zucchini (1 medium), grated and mixed with 1/2 tsp salt
⅓ cup/80 grams coconut oil
½ cup/106 grams brown sugar
⅓ cup/80 grams plain yogurt
2 large eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup/120 grams all-purpose flour
½ cup/60 grams buckwheat flour
⅓  cup poppy seeds
½ teaspoon baking soda
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest

2 Tablespoons coconut oil melted for greasing pan and then
½ cup/55 grams chopped walnuts
2 Tablespoons brown sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Melt the coconut oil and use a little to brush into the cups of your muffin tin to grease.

2. Squeeze the liquid from the salted grated zucchini and place In a large bowl. Use a rubber spatula to mix together with the melted coconut oil, sugar, yogurt, eggs and vanilla extract.

3. Prepare the topping. Melt 2 more Tablespoons of coconut oil and combine with the chopped walnuts and sugar.

4. Whisk together the flours, poppy seeds, baking soda, baking powder, lemon zest and spices in a separate bowl. Fold the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. 

5. Pour the batter into the prepared muffin tin. Sprinkle a little of the walnut mixture over each muffin.  Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, rotating the pan halfway through baking. The muffins will be done when a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.
Cool on a wire rack for 10 minutes. 

Friday, July 14, 2017

Gado Gado and Chicken Satay

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market, you can expect to find pastured meat and eggs from Fair Valley Farm, fresh cut flower bouquets from Tiger Lily Art Company, and fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including:

strawberries (make some fresh fruit crepes)

last of the snap peas
beets (try this quinoa and beet salad with roasted kale)
potatoes (make some gado gado below)
summer squashes
onions (make this addictive cumin lamb with seared onions and Fair Valley Farm lamb)
salad mix
chard (why not bake a chard and bacon tart with Fair Valley Farm bacon)

When we were in Bali a few weeks ago, we took at cooking class at a restaurant in Ubud, Cafe Wayan, where we made (clockwise from top left) eggplant with sambal balado, chicken satay with peanut sauce, chicken curry in coconut milk, and a Balinese grilled fish salad.  

It all tasted wonderfully exotic, but in fact many of the ingredients were ones we have in our kitchen, and the flavors came from how they were combined, often in complex ground pastes, or cooked in unexpected ways. For example, the peanut sauce for the chicken satay, unlike our regular peanut sauce for noodles, was made by grinding fried peanuts with garlic and some tomato and then simmering in a pan with water. 

Last week we recreated this recipe at home, along with another Indonesia dish called gado gado, a composed salad of boiled and fresh vegetables that is also served with peanut sauce. We made a trip to Sunrise Market for small peanuts, kecap manis (a sweet soy sauce), palm sugar, and prawn crackers (little discs that puff up when fried and are traditionally served with gado gado).   

All the vegetables we sourced from the Fairmount Farmers Market, including fingerling potatoes, green beans, cabbage, cucumbers, and carrots. Almost anything could go into gado gado, so it is the perfect farmers market dish for any season, and once you've made a big batch of peanut sauce, the rest of the recipe scales easily for a crowd.

We served ours with hard boiled eggs and fried tempe, with chicken satay skewers on the side. It was a wonderful meal for reminiscing about our recent trip and my husband's family's years spent in Indonesia long ago.  

Gado Gado

peanut sauce (recipe follows)
lightly steamed cabbage leaves
boiled little potatoes
blanched green beans
fresh cucumbers and carrots
other steamed or fresh vegetables of your choice
hard boiled eggs
tempe or tofu, sliced into thin strips and fried
prawn crisps and sambal oelek for serving

Prepare all of the vegetables, the hard boiled eggs, and the fried tempe or tofu. Serve with peanut sauce, fried prawn crisps, and sambal oelek.

Peanut Sauce (Bumbu Kacang) 
from Cafe Wayan (for four servings of gado gado)
100 ml water
100 g small peanuts (often called Spanish peanuts)
canola oil as needed for frying the peanuts
1 slice tomato
1 clove garlic
1 Tbsp palm sugar (or use white sugar)
a pinch of salt
1 Tbsp kecap manis (sweet soy sauce, or use regular soy sauce and 1 tsp sugar)
1 tsp tamarind paste or lime juice to taste

If using fresh, small peanuts, fry them in a small amount of canola oil until they harden and become fragrant. Drain on paper towels and season with a pinch of salt. Grind all of the ingredients together with a mortar and pestle or in a food processor. Place in a pan with 1/4 cup water and simmer over medium heat for 10-15 minutes, stirring to prevent sticking. Then add 1 Tbsp kecap manis and 1 tsp of tamarind paste. Combine, taste, and if needed add more salt, sugar, tamarind paste, or lime juice.

Chicken Satay (Sate Ayam)
from Cafe Wayan (serves four as an appetizer) 
1/2 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1 inch cubes
3 cloves garlic, minced
3 Tbsp oil such as canola
3 Tbsp kecap manis (sweet soy sauce, or use regular 3 Tbsp soy sauce and 1 Tbsp sugar)
1 Tbsp lemon juice
mild chili
salt and pepper

Mix the ingredients thoroughly. It's best if you can marinate the chicken for several hours or up to a day. Thread the chicken cubes onto skewers and grill until cooked. Serve with peanut sauce.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Bibim Guksu with Summer Squash and Sesame Turnips

This Sunday at the Fairmount Neighborhood Farmers Market, you will find fresh cut flower arrangements from Tiger Lily Art Company and lots of fresh produce from Camas Swale Farm including:

beets (cook in a hash with spinach or pack into foil bundles for the grill)
turnips (delicious cooked in brown butter or in the bibim gusko below)
radishes (try smashed in chili oil
summer squash and zucchini (make a gratin or stir fry for bibim gusko below)
sugar snap peas
kale (try kale Florentine for brunch)
cabbage (make some homemade kimchi for bibim guksu below)

Since recovering from a bout of food poisoning while traveling in Asia, I've had a strong craving for kimchi. Perhaps it's nostalgia for all the delicious Asian food we'd sampled, or a subliminal need for probiotic bacteria, but when I read this description of a cold Korean noodle dish bibim gusku (literally "mixed noodles") I immediately wanted to try it. One of my favorite dishes to cook for the family is bibim bap ("mixed rice"), and here was a summery version with similar flavors and formulation.

A little internet searching revealed that a more traditional version of bibim gusku would use thin white wheat noodles (Somyeon) and incorporate chopped kimchi into the sauce. I love the flavor of buckwheat soba noodles, so I used these, and I kept the kimchi separate to maintain one of the virtues of bibim family meals: everyone is happy when they can customize the spicing and toppings to their preference.

This dish lends itself to improvising with your Farmers Market finds. In a pan Asian mash up, I made a quick side of Fuchsia Dunlop's Chinese sweet and sour summer squash and gave julienned hot pink turnips a Japanese-inspired treatment after the kinpira gobo (stir fried burdock) from Elin England's Eating Close to Home. Served along with some crunchy sliced cucumbers and Gryffindor carrots, a boiled egg, and some briny kimchi, this was a perfect summer meal that will be a regular on our dinner rotation. 

Bibim Guksu
serves four
300 g (3 circular packets) of soba noodles
Cook in salted boiling water until barely cooked through (about 5 minutes), then immediately rinse under cold water until entirely cooled. Toss with a drizzle of sesame oil to help prevent the strands from congealing. 

2 Tbsp soy sauce
2 tsp rice vinegar
2 tsp sesame oil
1 tsp honey
1 tsp Korean gochujang paste for a mild, kid-friendly sauce, or more as desired 
1 Tbsp sesame seeds
Mix together all the ingredients. Taste and adjust flavorings as desired.

sweet and sour summer squash
2 zucchini
2 Tbsp cooking oil
2 garlic cloves, finely sliced
1/2 tsp sugar
1 tsp Chinkiang vinegar
Quarter the summer squash lengthwise, and slice thinly. Toss with 1/2 tsp salt, mix well and set aside for 30 minutes or so to sweat. When you are ready to cook, squeeze the slices to get rid of excess water. Heat a wok over a high flame. Add the oil, then the garlic, and stir-fry for a few seconds until you smell its fragrance. Add the squash and stir-fry until they are hot and just cooked, but still a little crisp. Add the sugar and vinegar, with salt to taste, stir a couple of times, then tip on to a dish and serve.

julienned sesame turnips with edamame beans
3 large or 4 small turnips, washed, topped, and tailed
1 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp soy sauce
1 tsp sweet mirin or rice wine plus a pinch of sugar
1/2 cup fresh or frozen edamame beans
1 tsp sesame oil
2 tsp sesame seeds
red pepper flakes to taste

Slice the turnips and cut the slices into matchsticks. Mix together the soy sauce and mirin. Heat a skillet or wok over high heat and add the oil. When it is hot, add the julienned turnips. Stir fry for a couple minutes until a few start to brown. Add the soy sauce mixture and the edamame beans and continue cooking over high heat, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has completely reduced to a glaze. Remove from heat, drizzle with sesame oil and sprinkle with sesame seeds and red pepper flakes.

additional toppings
4 eggs cooked for six minutes in boiling water and immediately cooled for jammy yokes
julienned carrots and cucumbers

Before serving, toss the noodles with the sauce (or leave the noodles undressed for very picky eaters), adding sauce a little at a time until the noodles seem lightly coated. Let people serve themselves their preferred toppings and mix the noodles with the toppings on their plates.