Monday, May 20, 2013

Fish Tacos

Fish Tacos, originally uploaded by michele wynne.
I should call these Revelation Fish Tacos.
I can't begin to describe how freakin' delish and easy this was. I've never had any desire to eat, much less make, fish tacos. Actually, that's a big fat lie.  Several months ago, at a company Christmas party at Tacolicious, a platter of fish tacos passed before me. I tried one, just 'cuz it was there. Wow! Amazing! Who knew? No fish taco made it past me for the rest of the evening. I'm not a big fan of fish, yet, I remember thinking quite seriously: "I must figure out how to make these!" Then I forgot all about it. Until now.
While waiting for Gwyneth Paltrow's new cookbook to make it's way through the library wait-list to me, I got My Father's Daughter again. I am a big fan of this book. The photo of her fish tacos and fixin' spread was the first thing that caught my eye and attention this go-round with the book.
The fish (something white and flaky like cod or halibut is recommended-but if you're a big 'fraidy-cat like me, frozen tilapia works just fine) is cut into strips and batter fried in a 1-1 ratio of beer and flour with a little salt and pepper. Super simple.
The fixin's include:
  • shredded cabbage with lime juice and salt
  • crema: sour cream with lime juice and salt
  • pico de gallo: red onion, halved cherry tomatoes, cilantro, lime & salt ~ chopped jalepenos optional
  • sliced avocado sprinkled with lime and salt
  • corn tortillas heated on the stove burner
Done & De-lish.

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Spring Vegetable Pot Stickers

Pot Stickers Round Two:
I spent the morning attempting to embrace the journey rather than speed to the destination. This can be difficult for me at times but now,  100 potstickers later it's still a time sucking endeavor but, I think I got this. This video at least my tucking and pleating has made some strides.
This recipe for Spring Vegetable Potstickers comes from Smitten Kitchen (big surprise there)...another timely post celebrating fresh Spring vegetables when I'm oh so obessessed with them now, both in the little kitchen and in my new job. We got fiddlehead ferns and chiogga beets in yesterday-stay tuned.
Anyhoo, smitten put this recipe on my radar just as I was uptomyelbows in my first attempt at the potsticka. Her recipe intrigued and challenged me on a couple of levels. Her ingredients include fava beans and tofu in addition to my beloved asparagus. I was soooo jazzed up to make these that I pedaled over to Bi-Rite on my day off to purchase my employee discounted bountiful basket of asparagus, fava beans and TOFU! Two firsts for the little kitchen: tofu and fava beans.
I adore hate adore fava beans! As you peel away the layers from the large bumpy shell revealing a cushiony pod interior that looks like cotton batting, to the wiggly yellow umbilical cord that caps the leathery sac that covers the buttery soft almost expect something alien to emerge. Gorgeous, but seriously- a pain in the ass to shell. On the other hand, it's a given that the pot sticker process is gonna be a long one so what's it gonna hurt to add another 20 minutes to the process when , who am I kidding, I've got nothing better to do on a day off.
On to tofu...if anyone can get me to embrace tofu, it's gonna be smitten kitchen. In this recipe it's sort of disguised to look like crumbled cheese, now if I could only get it to soak up some flavor. That was my only teeensy problem with this recipe. I loved the look and texture of the finished dumpling but I wasn't getting any definitive flavor from it. I realized that I was way too hesitant with the scallions and chives.
I broke my number one rule:        first time recipe-follow exactly.
I didn't have quite enough scallions and I thought 1/2 cup of chives seemed excessive. I should have known better. Trust in the smitten-she's never let me down yet.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Ramp Pizza

Ramp Pizza, originally uploaded by riptideredsf.
Just a few short weeks ago, I'd never heard of ramps. Many changes have occured since then and this recipe for Ramp Pizza, appearing from Smitten Kitchen last week was nothing short of freaky.
The big news is: I got a new job. I ventured out of my comfort zone, leaving a job I was content with but ultimately unchallenged or inspired by. After a few fits and starts, I have landed here. A gourmet market so special and inspiring, I'm practically chomping at the bit to re-vamp the little kitchen and my life. The company mission statement? Building community through food.
Though my new career so perfectly gels with the original intention of my little blog: embracing the veg, it will open up a whole new world of food for me. 
I'm currently obsessed with the produce...mostly attempting to memorize an overwhelming number of numbers that identify each type of fruit and vegetable. I knew that would be a challenge, but what surprises and intrigues me are the odd creatures I've never seen before.


As I'm OCD'ing  Googling my way through Ramp 101:

a wild leek, sort of a cross between a scallion and green garlic... pungent and onion-y. They're not cultivated, grown in gardens or on farms. They are foraged from forests, found mainly in the east from the Carolinas to Canada. Their season only lasts the first few weeks of Spring...

...up pops the recipe from Smitten Kitchen, just as I'm pondering what one does with a ramp. Pizza! Brilliant...a little piece of my comfort zone.