Sunday, July 27, 2008

Let them eat PIE....

I had some crust in the freezer from my last pie I decided on the pie.

Besides it will be a birthday pie for Sarah tonight.

I have this great little glass pie plate from my mom that is smaller than a 9". I think it's about 7 or 8. But it comes in handy when you don't have enough fruit to fill a bigger pie. I don't like a 'thin' filling. I always use a pastry cloth for rolling dough.

I marked it with a 'b' and put some milk and sugar on the crust to give it that glazed sugary look. And off it went.

Here it is....warm from oven. Ready for the vanilla ice cream and birthday candles. How many candles, Sarah??

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Blackberry Dilemma

The farm market this morning yielded these beauties. Now my dilemma. What to do with them.

Just a point of information. These are blackberries, not black raspberries. Black raspberries have a cavity in the center like red raspberries. These do not.

Should I make a half batch of blackberry jam?

Or how about these Blackberry Hand Pies?

Or what about Blackberry Buttermilk Panna Cottas with Blackberry Compote?

They'd also be great just as they are with homemade granola and yogurt!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Crossword Junkie

I'll admit it....I'd rather do the crossword than actually read the New York Times. Unless it's the home section or the food section.

This is how I start my day. Coffee and the puzzle and 'quiet time'. My husband on the other hand, likes to watch TV. Too much noise for me.

I love Monday...the easy puzzle. Today it's a tough one. When I've done all I can do, I some times research some of the answers. One Across is an interesting site for that.

But last week I found The New York Times Puzzle in Gothic. Not only does Donald post the answers with some explanation of the clues very early in the am (what time does HE get the paper) but if you'll look just above the graphic answers, you'll see the link to the cartoon that goes with the puzzle's theme for the day. How cool!

And...just for your entertainment:

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

A summer day in the Hamptons

I've been away from my computer for 2 days, visiting a dear friend who moved to Southampton.
I worked with her as a librarian in what now seems like another life.
....BS: Before Soap.

My friend, Susan, is a wonderful hostess and a terrific cook. She has a lovely home filled with antiques that she and her husband have collected over the years. She is a dear friend and so much fun to be with.

We packed a lot into a few days...including some Mah Jongg and a bit of time at the beach.

I arrived home late last night and didn't get to my computer until this morning to find out what Sarah has been up to....her blog is how I keep up-to-date with her.

So, Sarah is the guest blogger on Design Sponge this week. And yesterday she wrote a post about the origins of Saipua and mother 'always knowing best' This mother was very touched. Thank you, Sarah.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

Summer Sandwich Spread

One of our local restaurants, Tuscan Oven, is a favorite not only because of the great martinis they serve, but because of the spinach pesto they put on the table with the bread. I've tried to duplicate it and have even been known to buy a pint and bring it home. Yes, it's that good!

Yesterday I made sandwiches using this recipe from Epicurious. I used fresh mozzarella rather than smoked and they were yummy....the olive spread was a key ingredient.

Then I got to thinking about other spreads you could use in a sandwich and thought about the spinach pesto.
So.....I made a pesto of just spinach, basil, olive oil, garlic and salt.
About 4 parts spinach and 1 part basil. 3 cloves of garlic and about 1/4 cup olive oil. Salt to taste.

I spread it thickly on Ciabatta and layered roasted peppers and fresh mozzarella.

yummmm....good thing the kids from Saipua are here to help me eat these!

Farm Market Day

It's Saturday already and farm market day. The entire street is closed to make way for our little farm market in Peekskill, NY which has quite a nice variety.

There are: pickles & olives, plants & flowers, grass pastured meat & fresh eggs, bakery items, fresh mozzarella, honey & maple syrup, a Bread Alone booth and two different produce vendors. Sometimes a local winery and a master gardener from Cornell Cooperative Extension to answer gardening question.

A nice variety....I got fresh basil and spinach today to make a pesto for fresh mozzarella & roasted pepper sandwiches on ciabatta.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Mandoline report

I had to break down and purchase a mandoline after I saw Vanessa's broccoli slaw over at What Geeks Eat. Good news...I have not yet sliced my fingers with that puppy.

So...I made the slaw. It was delish! Then went on to julienne everything I could find. Including the summer squash and kirby cukes I got at the farm market on Sat. AM. I also used the fresh garlic you see here to make that squash and kirbys into a fresh salad with chic peas...I tossed it all together and Sarah made a dressing of the crushed garlic, olive oil and lemon. It was surprisingly delicious, very fresh tasting and crunchy. Oh yeah...we topped it with grated cheese as we do lots of things.

And those cherries? Again I took Vanessa's lead and used them in my version of 'Strawberry Pie'.... read that: Tart Cherry Pie. I did reserve enough cherries to make 3 jars of jam. Cherry jam is the tart/sweet!

I'm sorry I don't have photos of the finished pie....we were too busy topping it with vanilla ice cream and eating it!

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Green....with Envy

Lovely pastel yarrow that Sarah brought in from the garden. It was growing so tall and falling over my new Green Envy echinacea that I just put in a few weeks ago. Actually the yarrow makes a nice wild looking arrangement.

Here's the 'green envy' I was protecting from the yarrow....mine don't look quite like these...but hopefully they will in another year or so when established. Sarah and I are off to the farmer's market this morning to see what they have this week. I'm hoping for raspberrys or cherries....

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Wooo Hooo.....Finally a baby tomato!

Early this morning, on my garden tour, I found this 'first' tomato. It's not as big as it looks.....just about the size of the end of my thumb.

Then later today....I found more. We're on our way to tomatoes! Yeah!!
Finally I succumbed and put the oven on this morning to make the Maple/Pecan granola from the What Geeks Eat blog. Just search granola at the bottom of her page and you'll find the recipe. It was SO easy to make and SO GOOD. I baked it on parchment, stirring every 10 minutes.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

a picker upper....

Here is something to brighten your day!

Matt Harding dancing around the world as mentioned in the NY Times this morning:

More info. on his website.

Monday, July 7, 2008

Pursulane follow-up....

Here are my ingredients for dinner......pursulane, cucumber and yogurt. I love the Fage yogurt...its already strained and thick enough for this kind of recipe.

I adapted this recipe by just combining cucumber, and pursulane with yogurt mixed with ground coriander, pressed garlic, salt and pepper. It was SOOOOO hot tonight, this was a great light dinner. Just a couple of WASA crispbreads on the side. Very good. I'm sold on pursulane. Next I'll try it in a salad....

First harvest...Pursulane

It doesn't take more than a few days for the garden to get away from me.

I noticed today that the tomato plants have grown so much that they needed additional staking and ties. I also found that the pursulane has become rampant.

Though it's a weed, pursulane is edible....and this is the year we're going to try it. At least I am. Not sure about Pentti... I found a great website about it with RECIPES
I'm up for the cucumber-pursulane-yogurt salad. We're stalking those wild plants, Euell!

Friday, July 4, 2008

Early Morning in Central New York

My brother Steve has a place right on the Seneca River and early morning is lovely here. Lots of birds, ducks, heron to watch on the river as the mists lifts.
Steve likes to watch it all from the hot tub on his deck:

Thursday, July 3, 2008

An upstate auction

We headed upstate to Syracuse today to visit my brother for the July 4th weekend and to hit an auction in nearby Bernhard's Bay. This was a great auction. NO buyer's premium and lots of stuff going for good prices.

Here's my loot.

I haven't even had a chance to check out everything in that box on the right. I bought it for the rubber stamp holder....but I think there's some other good stuff there. And I really need that watering can for my garden!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

So...what do geeks eat??

I'm all about changing my food supply. (yes, I got my book in the mail: In Defense of Food)

Last night while watching an old video tape (yes tape) of 'The Loved One' I happened across this blog: What Geeks Eat and spent a good hour or so perusing it and drooling over the photos of the food....I could eat it right off the computer screen. The bar has been raised. I have to take better photos!

This blog is going on my reading list.

The Loved One is a 1965 spoof of the funeral business in L.A. based on a 1948 book of the same name by Evelyn Waugh Hilarious...and what a cast of characters including Liberace, Rod Steiger, and Jonathan Winters, Robert Morse, James Coburn, John Geilgud, Milton Berle......

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Saipua comes upstate

Saipua's weekend is Monday-Tuesday. And even then we find ourselves working.

Getting 2 new soaps ready for summer showing: Red Currant and Frankincense & Myrrh.
Both have been popular in the shop, so now we're sending them out into the world!

You can see samples by Sarah's computer.

And we always have lovely flowers when Sarah and Eric arrive. White peony, scabiosa, tulips and a sunflower with the petals pulled off. Great colors in my kitchen!

We didn't work so hard that we didn't have time for a manicure and cocktails before dinner. But be forewarned....cocktails and politics often don't mix!