With Summer comes, of course, outdoor-food season! Garden parties, picknicks, impromptu gatherings at a fireplace of one sort of another – most of the time, there’s hot coals, cold drinks and lots of meat involved. Good times~!
Hell-week is over and we’ve settled at the perfect-summer “hot during the day, cool at night” combo! Now this could go on for a couple of months, if I had to say anything in the matter… Oh well. Even though the temperatures might allow a couple of minutes in the kitchen right now, having a handful of edible aces up your sleeves for the really hot days never hurts, so I’ll stick to the general topic of “minimal stove-time” yummies, as promised.
As asparagus season is slowly coming to an end, I thought this would be the perfect time to go big for one last time – at least for this year~ I had planned on cooking up a three-stage asparagus storm that weekend, involving veal and strawberries and all that yummy jazz for you guys, but I got sidetracked – or more precisely: blindsided! – during our usual Saturday-trip to the farmer’s market. To my great surprise, my wary-of-sea-creatures hubby of all people, all but jumped up and down in excitement while pointing the fishmonger’s sign advertising his good deals on monkfish.
You guys might have noticed that I’m a big fan of salads as main dishes, especially during the 10°C-and-above time of the year. So, of course, I’m always on the lookout for new and exciting combinations of ingredients to be used in a salady kind of context. When you’re skimming salad options on restaurant menus, in cookbooks or during shows on TV, you can’t help but notice the ever-present named classics – Waldorf, Caesar and the rest of the gang – and tip your hat to whoever invented them, since they’re still alive, kicking and delicious.
Right now, I’m sitting at a small coffee-table in a cute little house peeking out from under a comfy reed-cap, listening to the crashing storm-chased waves of the North Sea rolling in just behind the dam. The time for our traditional winter-vacay on Germany’s northernmost island, Sylt, has arrived. When my parents started heading out this way in the dead of winter on a regular basis, I honestly thought something else was going on – secret trips to the Caribbean came to mind – because… who in their right mind would travel to the main land’s icy-sea-storm-barrier at that time of the year? Right…?
I just had an ama~zing weekend! I’ve spent a good part of 3 days in the kitchen on a wicked inspiration-rush and emerged victorious, 5 new and absolutely delicious recipe hammered out for you guys – and that’s not even the really amazing part of it! Hubby and I had a long-overdue sit-down with our trusted travel agent this Saturday and booked our vacations for the year! Aaaand four days later, I’m still yay’ing in my head… an end to the joyous rush appears to be nowhere in sight.
Dear Chef’s Guild of Tyria,
Thank you, thank you, thank you~! Thanks to your recommendation, I ventured into the unknown, one of my favorite seafood’y ingredients in tow, and ended up with an entirely new tastebud-dancing, finger-licking, delicious experience~!
Have you ever had that moment where you wish you could just share one of your favorite comfort dishes in a sophisticated, stylish manner, fit to wow a dinner crowd? I usually get that kind of If-only-I-could idea when I’m rotating around the kitchen, juggling three or more dishes, wishing I had remembered to pick at least one dish I can breeze through on auto-pilot. Well, during this past New Year’s Dinner prep-work, my tummy did a wonderful job of nudging me into the right direction~
I think I’ve mentioned this before, but coming up with the kind of intricate dessert – the ones that make you gawk at them in awe, quivering spoon in hand, at a ponzy restaurant – is, thanks to my not-that-sweet tooth, quite the challenge – which I happily accept every time, what with me trying my best to grow in the kitchen and all that jazz.
As the berry season is coming to an end in our corner of the world, there’s a rare type of late strawberries popping up all over the farmer’s market – deep red and very intense „Blood Strawberries“ as the vendors call them. They have a flavor to them that immediately made me think about using them in a savory dish when I first tried them – something with a little bit of a zing to it, something not quite meaty… Before I could even finish wrapping my head around the idea of combining fish and berries – really good or ridiculously bad idea? – I found myself making a beeline for the Fishmonger’s stall, not really sure what I was actually looking for.