Friday, April 18, 2014

Feasting on Friday

Hi there, I'm back again today, rounding up all the best morsels and such I crossed paths with this week.

-Tumblr to follow: The Man Alive

-An interesting read on why we should be skeptical of Walmart's organic offering.

-Did you listen to this piece from NPR on cell phones in restaurants — thoughts?

-Richmond (making news again!) is chosen as number 4 out of 10 cities you should explore on a bike — did your city make the list?

-I always enjoy listening to Michael Pollan speak — this one will make you think twice about eating McDonald's fries!

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Gulia Sayur with Mustard Greens

Mustard greens — one of those powerfully nutritious vitamin-packed cruciferous vegetables that should make a regular rotation in your diet! There is a reason these greens are labeled as one of the world's healthiest foods. It has been a while since we cooked with mustard greens, the last time they arrived in our CSA box we pickled them. This time, when almost 3 beautiful pounds arrived on the doorstep, I wanted to do something different. That is when I was inspired by this recipe for Gulai Sayur (Indonesian-Style Collard Green Curry). I simply subbed in 2 pounds of rough chopped mustard greens for the collard greens.

This is one of those blogging moments where I thought to myself, did I create a new recipe and should I just say the above inspired me, listing the ingredients and preparation method? Well to answer that honestly, if I would have drastically changed the recipe and preparation, then yes I could do that, citing the original recipe as an inspiration point. In this case, I simply followed the recipe exactly and changed one ingredient — so, not worthy of saying or even trying to say I created something new from the original source. For those curious, David Lebovitz wrote a piece for Food Blog Alliance called Recipe Attribution which is a very good read and review on best practices.

All of that being said, the amazing recipe I tried out can be found here and today's post will be a visual tour with some comments from me as I navigated through this aromatic and flavorful Gulai Sayur. I hope you enjoy!

The ingredients in this recipe make for some beautiful warming photography!

Blend the spices into a paste in your food processor. Taking the top off reveals some wonderful aromas.

Lemongrass stripped of its outer tough skin, pounded and tied is always a joy in the pot. If you have not cooked with this fresh ingredient, here is a resource for wonderful recipes using lemongrass.

Once the coconut milk is added you really get the sense of the region you are cooking from.

Since collards are a little tougher than mustard greens I only cooked them about 20-25 minutes as opposed to the 40 minutes called for in the original recipe.

Plating the greens with a little of the broth makes for a healthy spice-packed lunch or side. I would suggest serving over rice or lentils for a quick weeknight meal.

When is the last time you cooked with mustard greens or have you walked past these on a regular basis? This would be a simple easy recipe to give them a try.

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

Friday, April 11, 2014

Feasting On Friday

Hi there, I'm back again today, rounding up all the best morsels and such I crossed paths with this week.

-Tumblr to follow: You Called Me Out Upon The Waters

-In Brooklyn a few weeks ago I had the chance to visit Smorgasburg and here are your dining options. So good!

-Two of my favorite interviews from the PBS series Blank on BlankJerry Garcia and Johnny Cash. Have you seen these? They really are quite interesting.

-25 things that are cheaper at Whole Foods.

-What's your take — a good thing or bad thing for organic foods in America?

-If you could only eat one candy for the rest of your life what would it be? Mine would probably be a Heath bar.

-And finally, looking for something to do Sunday here in RVA? Harvest Grocery, is having a First Spring Event from 10-3. All your RVA favorites will be there — Hardywood Park Craft Brewery, Pizza Tonight, Blanchard's Coffee, and King of Pops! 

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

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Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Portable Kitchen Window Herb Garden

Of course with the warmer spring weather comes gardening season. Living in an urban railroad style row house in Richmond, Virginia does not allow for a ton of gardening space, so everything (for the most part) is grown in containers. This allows for us to move the plants throughout the day, maximizing the amount of sun the varying plants get.

I also look forward to finally getting fresh herbs planted! Some of the heartier varieties like rosemary and thyme tend to make it through the winters and allow for me to snip a few sprigs here and there but the likes of dill, basil, cilantro, and parsley don't not allow for that.

This year I thought it would be fun to create a portable herb garden with all of the essentials that I could bring into the kitchen when I am cooking and move back outside or in the windowsill when I'm not. 
First, you have to find a cool planter and this vintage blue and white enamel pan (in all of it's beat up rusty glory) will do the trick. I filled it with a mix of organic potting and top soil:

Carefully planted some dill, parsley and basil:

Some German thyme:

And finally, some Italian oregano:

I then watered everything well and placed it in the sunshine for everything to get adjusted and take root!

Now when cooking, this sits on the counter allowing me to snip as needed! Needless to say, I am not a big fan of paying upwards of $2.99 for a package of herbs at the grocery store when I can have this option round the house producing fresh herbs all season long.

What have you been working on in your garden? Have a favorite fresh cooking herb?

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

Monday, April 7, 2014

Marinated Pork Tenderloin with a Jalapeño Pineapple Salsa

It is hard to say grilling season is upon us because for me, pulling out the grill is a year-round activity. That said, there is something about enjoying the warmer temperatures and firing up the grill with family and friends. This is an amazing (and simple to make) pork tenderloin recipe that I promise will become a regular rotation on your grill.

  • 3 pound pork tenderloin
  • 1/2 cup soy sauce
  • 2T sesame oil
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1 jalapeño, sliced
  • Juice of one lime
  • 1" piece of ginger, diced
  • Handful roughly torn cilantro 
  • 1 cup of fresh pineapple, diced
Place the first 8 ingredients in a freezer bag. Massage the meat with the liquid and roll the bag up removing any air and close. Let marinate in a refrigerator for 24 hours, occasionally picking the bag up and massaging.

When ready to cook, dice your pineapple and prepare your grill over medium high heat. Remove the tenderloin and the jalapeño from the bag, discarding the rest of the marinade. Place the tenderloin on the grill and cook thoroughly, creating a light charred crust on the outside of the meat — I like my pork medium rare but grill to your liking.  Cook the jalapeño separately in a grilling basket until crispy.

Remove the meat from the grill and allow it to rest for a few minutes before slicing. While the meat is resting, chop the jalapeño and add it to the pineapple, mixing well.

Slice the tenderloin into medallions and place on a serving platter.

Layer the pineapple salsa onto the pork and sprinkle with additional freshly torn cilantro.

Serve immediately.

For years this has been a go-to pork tenderloin recipe of mine and is perfect to make and marinate the day before you head out on a camping trip. Once you get to your site this is an easy dinner to toss on the grill!

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

Friday, April 4, 2014

Feasting On Friday

Hi there, I'm back again today, rounding up all the best morsels and such I crossed paths with this week.

-Tumblr to follow: Bungalow Classic

-Twitter is only 8 years old — here are some quite interesting statistics of how things have changed over those 8 years!

-In case you missed it, here's what's been cooking here in the EAT kitchen — Spring Peas in a Chardonnay cream sauce, Homemade spicy bourbon beef stock, and a French onion tart with Gruyère.

-6 people posing with all the food they eat in a day.

-Our first official eHow project went up this week — DIY Jeweled Crystal Wine Stoppers, so easy to make and look great on the bar cart.

-Well it is finally baseball season! Did you see the 18" corn dog the Arizona Diamondbacks are offering in there stadium?

E.A.T. local E.A.T. well

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Wednesday, April 2, 2014

French Onion Tart with Gruyère

Do you love french onion soup? If so, you are going to love this easy to make french onion tart. From the first bite, you will swear you just slurped this from a spoon, not bitten into a savory tart! This isn't the first tart featured here on the blog and if the french onion version is not for you, asparagus is also in season and you can make this simple asparagus Gruyère tart.

  • 1 sheet puff pastry dough, thawed
  • 3 medium yellow onions, thinly and evenly sliced
  • 3T butter
  • 1 cup beef broth, preferably homemade
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1T whole grain mustard
  • 1/3 cup sour cream
  • 8 ounces shredded Gruyère cheese

Melt butter in a medium saucepan and add the onions. Cook over medium, stirring frequently until onions begin to turn golden and caramelize. Once golden and caramelized add a cup of the beef broth and deglaze the pan. Continue to simmer until almost all of the liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat, set aside and keep warm.

Preheat the oven to 400°. Add the mustard, egg yolks and sour cream in a mixing bowl, blending well and incorporating a 1/4 cup of the Gruyère in.

Spread the thawed puffed pastry dough out on a lightly floured work surface. I pulled out my grandmother's bread board. With a floured rolling pin gently roll the dough to thin it out some. You will only gain about a 1/4" to 1/2" in size. Once done, score the outer edge of the dough about a 1/2" all the way around and prick the center with a fork all over.

Transfer the dough onto a sheet pan and place in the oven for 15 minutes. The dough will puff up from the heat but will deflate a bit once removed from the oven.

After the 15 minutes, remove and evenly spread a coat of the cheese mixture onto the puff pastry.

Add a layer of the shredded Gruyère.

Then spread the reserved onion mixture on top. Add any remaining cheese to the top of the onions and return to the oven for about 15 minutes or until the edges of the puff pastry turn golden and the cheese is melted.

Remove from the oven, allowing to cool slightly and slice into individual portions.

Serve immediately!

You will swear you are chewing a bowl of French onion soup!

E.A.T. local E.A.T well
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