Friday, September 25, 2009

Guest Blogger!

I was so excited when Louisa asked me to guest blog on GastroFabulous!! I love reading this blog and it gives me tons of ideas for my own cooking. Shortly after I was invited to this blog, I started my own blog about cooking in my small, New York kitchen with one plate. I recently acquired 4 new plates!! So I thought it was time to expand my blogging as well. I hope to do an exclusive post for GastroFabulous int he future, but for now, I hope you enjoy "Chayote, Explored," visiting from One Plate Wonder for one post only.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Massive Meal, Massive Post! Chayote, Explored. (Video included!)

This past week was my birthday and my awesome friend and follower of my blog, Liz, gave me plates!!!

Such a thoughtful birthday gift!! While my title is no longer relevant, I am still One Plate Wonder in spirit. And I still have a tiny kitchen where the plate doesn't even fully fit on the counter. So, here is a big, birthday post from One Plate Wonder.

I recently visited my friend in Boston who had just come back from Costa Rica. She recommended Chayote and pointed it out in the market. So when I saw it in Whole Foods, I picked it up and decided to give it a try. All I knew was that it was from Costa Rica, so I started to research. I found out that it is a squash cooked by boiling then peeling. Now, I know Costa Rica is in Central America. I am not too familiar with where certain foods come from as I have not traveled much, but I do associate it with South of the Border/South America, so I tried to go for those flavors. This is the chayote.

The full explanation of the dish is in the video interview below (an exclusive interview with One Plate Wonder herself interviewed by my sister). Here is the description I may put on the menu of a restaurant (if anyone wants to put it on a menu I am happy to sell it because I am definitely short on cash at the moment): A melange of mushrooms and chayote atop a bed of sauteed swiss chard above spiced polenta patties, topped with avocado.

I started prepping the chayote and while that was going on, I sauteed onion and garlic then added cremini mushrooms. When the chayote was ready I added that to the mix with some paprika, salt, pepper, and chili powder.

To read the rest of this post, see the exclusive video, and view the final dish, visit One Plate Wonder.

Thanks for letting me guest blog!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Tomatillo Salsa

This is my bowl of tomatillos. I picked them at my friend's CSA farm last weekend. Actually, LZ picked most of them because I couldn't spot them among all those leaves. Good thing I had him along. So I brought them home and thought about making salsa all week until this weekend I finally did. And here it is:
I kind of combined a few different recipes which might not have been the best idea. I was worried for a while in there that I was ruining it, but it came out pretty good and relatively salsa-like, so no harm done. First I roasted the tomatillos in the oven. I also roasted some garlic, onion, and corn to add to the salsa. When the tomatillos seemed soft and roasted, I let them cool. Then I chopped them up. That part was weird because they were obviously roasted and mushy. Some recipes said to blend them but I didn't want a tomatillo smoothie. I put the tomatillo mush in a bowl, added the onions, corn, garlic, salt, and some lime juice, then mixed it all around and it looked pretty much like salsa!
Lastly, I put it on tacos! We had bought some pulled pork so I just put cheese and tomatillo gloop on top and it was REALLY tasty! If I ever find myself with another bowl of tomatillos, I'd definitely do it again.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Meditterraneean Eggplant and Fennel Stew

So as most of you know, I am doing a CSA this year. Some weeks I am better organized than others and use up all my veggies before more come. Well, it's Thursday and I still had eggplant and fennel (and potatoes and corn). So I did a search for "fennel and eggplant." There seemed to be two appealing options: Oven Baked Parmesan Crusted Eggplant and Fennel and Mediterranean Eggplant and Fennel Stew. For some reason I chose the latter (less work I think).
The ingredients were as follows:

fennel, EVOO, onion, garlic, diced tomates, veggie broth, eggpplant, olives (which I omitted), cinnamon, bay leaf (which I forgot to take out), capers (which I omitted) and balsamic vinegar.

It may be because I omitted some things, but this was not very good. Actually the smell was pretty close to nauseating. I think it was the cinnamon. Happily it tasted better than it smelled, and I was able to choke down a bowl full but I won't make this again! I definitely wish I had made the parmesan crusted eggplant!