Sunday, May 10, 2009

Licking the Platter Clean, Tinkles & Potty in the Chocolatti?

Last night's celebration topped them all! Thanks again to all for dealing with my undying laughter. That was truly the hardest I had chuckled in YEARS. My mom would be so proud :)
Just in case you haven't picked up the newest edition of Sauce Magazine (may), here is the farmer-inspired recipe that I used for last night's dish. I am pretty sure it was liked by all b/c it was the largest plate of food on the table and was licked clean (yes, I did the honors on that
one :)

Spring Vegetable Salad With White Chocolate Vinaigrette
Courtesy of Niche Restaurant's Gerard Craft
4 Salads or One Huge One

16 Claverach Farm baby carrots, divided (I used about 22 from WFM, these aren't out yet)
32 peeled fava beans
Good olive oil for drizzling & coloring puree
salt to taste
4 Claverach radishes (I used Berger farms)
3 shallots, sliced
2 springs of thyme (or more if you are like me)
2 cups white chocolate chips
2 T. water
1/4 cup rice wine vinegar (I used rice vinegar)
juice of half a lemon
1/2 cup (or more) Claverach (or other) pea shoots - I used Berger Farms sunflower shoots
4 oz. goat cheese

*Blanch 1/2 of the carrots in heavily salted boiling water. When tender, place them in bowl of ice water.
*In the same pot, boil the fava beans until they are tender. (Remember the only way to know if a vegetable is cooked is to taste it). Place the beans in the ice water. Cut the blanched carrots in half lengthwise and reserve cold.
*Place remaining carrots in a pan just large enough to hold them and cover with water. Cook, covered, on high until the carrots are tender. Then place in a blender with enough water to make them move. Puree until very smooth.
*At this point, add enough olive oil until the puree turns bright orange. Season with salt, chill and reserve cold.
*Thinly slice the radishes and reserve.
*For the white chocolate vinaigrette, sweat the shallots and thyme in a small pan until transluscent. In a seperate pan, combine the white chocolate and water and cook on medium heat. Stir until completely melted. Come the white chocolate with shallots and thyme in a blender and slowly drizzle in your vinegar. Season with salt to taste.
*Toss the carrots, radishes and favas with juice of half a lemon in a mixing bowl. Drizzle in olive oil til your heart desires and add salt to taste.
*To assemble, place a few dollops of carrot puree in random spots on a salad plate. Scatter carrots, radishes and favas equally around the plate.
*In a seperate bowl, toss the shoots with white chocolate vinaigrette and a little salt. Scatter the shoots (and handfuls of the vinaigrette) equally around the plate.
*Crumble the goat cheese around the plate and finish salad with a drizzle of olive oil.

***NOTE: Becky, I just noticed at the bottom of the recipe: The favas are better if the skin is removed before they are cooked! I didn't do this and I loved the beans... but who knows!

Finally... The Recipes!

As promised, here are the 2 recipes from the Slow Food Trivia Night. Thanks for inviting me in "Amy" to post!

Thick Tomato Spread
2 cups Tomatoes, fresh, chopped
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes (i bought these off the olive bar at whole foods market and soaked them in water to hydrate a bit more)
2 T. Ginger, chopped
1 T. Garlic, minced (Um, I NEVER use what a recipe calls for on garlic - USE MORE!)
1 T. Miso (or soy sauce if you wish)
1 T. Onion, chopped (again, I am sure I used more...)
1/2 cup Basil leaves
4-6 Dates, pitted (I used 4 large Medjool dates from bulk bins at Whole Foods Market)
My special add-ins:
handful of olives
splash of apple cider vinegar
fresh cracked pepper
pinch of cayenne

Directions: Throw all ingredients into a food processor and puree!!!

Served with...
Buckwheat Pancakes/Flatbread
1 cup buckwheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup water, or a little more (I ended up using quite a bit more as the batter thickened)
1 Tablespoon oil (or more)

Combine ingredients using enough water to make a medium-thin batter. Let it stand a few minutes while the griddle preheats. Spoon tablespoonsful onto a hot griddle. As batter thickens, add a little more water, so cakes stay thin.
**I ended up thinning out the batter a few times with more water and oil.
**You can make these as big or small as you like depending on how you want to use them.
**Enjoy them morning, noon, or night! Top with fruit or make them into sandwiches. They freeze well too!
**Options: Replace up to 1/3 of the flour with ground nuts or seeds; Add cinnamon to the batter; Use other flours such as quinoa or amaranth!

Monday, May 4, 2009


Friends & fellow feasters:

Please join us Saturday May 9 at 6:30 p.m. to celebrate our triumphant second place victory at the Slow Foods Trivia night.

The theme is Cicchetti (Italian tapas) so please bring a small dish to share. We'll purchase our wine for the evening with the trivia winnings.

A few ciccheti dishes that I'll make are:

  • Aroncini
  • Piccola torta del polenta e del fungo
  • Anchovy toasts

I'm looking forward to seeing you all there!

5419 Clifton
St. Louis, MO 63109

My cell is 314-249-9983.