Life, alas, handed me some lemons last week.
It is difficult for me to overstate just how disruptive it has been to have been without a working oven for a week and more. Oh, in part the disruption has been about the blog. Every summer treat I might want to show you all — from tarts and quiches, to simple roasted vegetables, to fine and fancy eclairs — all requires an insulated box full of fire to transform raw ingredients into food.
For anyone who has had any contact with me for the last month, the idea of a lemon kefir tart shouldn’t come as a great surprise. I have, after all, spent that time all but obsessed with kefir, stashing mason jars of room-temperature milk all around the house, and watching gleefully as my grains — the live active culture — transform said milk into a thick, sweet, sour, sometimes slightly carbonated beverage.
What has set me down this path is a recent trip to New York, to visit Hana and her husband. Walking into their tiny Manhattan apartment, two things struck me almost at once: the happy, healthy, gigantic kombucha mother gurgling away in a jar on their counter, and the jar of kefir, just about done fermenting.
When I was a child, steamed artichokes were my very favorite vegetable. Bitter and creamy, almost meaty at their heart, you could give childhood me an artichoke and a little puddle of butter, stand back, and watch in amazement as I picked it clean of all the parts you can possibly eat.
My mother made them on a fairly regular basis. Steamed artichokes were easy and could be done a day ahead. And my own partiality for them aside, both she and my father would devour them with visible pleasure, and sometimes go back for more.
It isn’t crazy that this morning — on the first real snowy morning of the new year, with three inches of snow on the ground, having just come in from shoveling the front steps — I churned two batches of ice cream. It’s not crazy at all. Not in the least. I mean it. The […]
Sarah and I have a grand weekend tradition of eating breakfast out. We’ve been doing it almost as long as we’ve been together. First, it was at the Original Mel’s in Berkeley, then the Runcible Spoon in Bloomington, and now … it’s wherever we can manage here in Philadelphia. We’re fans of restaurant dining, generally […]