Zucchini Boats

IMG_2259Recipe names like this always make me think of the book Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs.  I bet somewhere in the town of Chewandswallow, amidst all the chaos, was a perceptive mother. She saw the signs of an impending Act of Food and so decided to just let that zucchini in her garden keep growing. While the rest of the townspeople eyed her strangely as they indulged in falling pie and fried chicken, she ignored them, confident in her knowledge of what was coming.  Soon, it all changed. Pea soup engulfed the town. Stale bread filled the ocean. Meatballs fell from the sky. The rest of the town cobbled together peanut butter sandwich rafts that were doomed to water log. Meanwhile, this clever mother harvested her zucchini and herded her family inside, including the pet cat and Little Daughter’s fireflies. They were warm, dry, and well fed as their  zucchini ark was tossed about the ocean. Having grown her family to safety, this woman now lives among us, smiling politely at our weak jokes about zucchini boats.

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Posted 12 years, 3 months ago at 6:15 am. 1 comment

Liquid Gold

IMG_2081Since writing about why I cook, I’ve been thinking about the all the transformations inherent in cooking. In that post, I compare cooking to alchemy, the process of perfecting a base metal (lead) until it turns into a valuable commodity (gold). Making stock might be the best example of kitchen alchemy at work. It takes probably the basest of all ingredients- an old chicken carcass and vegetable scraps- and transforms them into liquid gold for your kitchen. Consommé, a type of clear stock, actually has the same root as “consummate”- both mean to bring something to perfection. Regardless of the metaphorical significance such a process may have, stock is a basic, if endangered, kitchen skill.

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Posted 12 years, 8 months ago at 7:43 pm. 3 comments

Roasted Broccoli

I love roasted vegetables.  Roasting intensifies flavors instead of seeping them into water, the way boiling does. Of all vegetables that I’ve roasted, broccoli comes in second only to potatoes.  Broccoli just seems to be meant for the oven. The whole stalk caramelizes and all of the little “leaves” get crispy. Add Parmesan cheese to that, and what not to love?  Velveeta cannot compare. Continue Reading…

Posted 12 years, 11 months ago at 12:58 pm. Add a comment