We get all worked up about winter squashes when fall comes around. I get it: they’re shiny and new. But actually, you should be more excited about brassicas in the fall; winter squashes will be here to stay for a while, stored easily all winter long. But fall weather also brings us brassicas—broccoli, cauliflower, cabbages, kale, Brussels sprouts and those spiky romanesco things—and we will not be seeing them for very long after this. It’s our last dance with them … Read More
photo: Brie Passano Last week, I was delighted to sit alongside fellow local bloggers for a panel discussion on food blogging hosted by Edible Manhattan. One of the questions that came up was, how important is photography to you? And another question, or several of the questions, were aimed at understanding what drives readership in a claustrophobic spectrum of sites about food. I’m not a photographer (never learned the ropes formally), but I’d say that photography is important and something … Read More
Beans, beans, they’re good for your heart. I won’t finish that familiar rhyme but the first part is thankfully very much true. Each of the three components in this concise side dish are beans or bean products. This doesn’t include the drops of vinegar, which was made with rice. However, if you served this with steamed rice to make for a complete meal, you’d essentially be eating a typical Eastern version of “beans and rice.” (See what I meant about … Read More
This would be filed under “stuff I eat when no one’s looking,” except I’m now sharing it. I eat a great deal of tofu as a pure comfort food — that and noodle soup. When it’s cold out, I’ll pick up a cheap pack of organic tofu and chop it up to sautee with a spicy, garlicky sauce. When it’s hot, there’s no greater coolant than a salad of just fresh tofu, and maybe a few cucumbers about.
Blocks of tofu stir-fried in a spicy, thick sauce studded with sweet peas is a winter comfort food for me. It clears the sinuses, tickles the tastebuds and it’s wickedly quick to produce. I never thought others would care much for it, knowing that tofu can be a tough sell. But after sharing this dish a few times over the years, many have dug in appreciatively and asked how it was done. It’s criminally easy so here goes.
This satisfying side dish or humble meal with rice is not the most interesting food I’ve eaten during my travels in Taiwan. Still, it has plenty of virtues that I hold close to heart: few ingredients, lots of plant-based protein, and it’s incredibly quick, and impossibly cheap to prepare. I hardly needed to go across the globe to access the recipe for this typical Taiwanese dish, however; it’s been a favorite of mine since I was a child.
The way I see it, if you can make something healthier, why not try? And see how you like it — or not — afterwards? Does that mean that I’m a fat-phobe counting my calories and hoping to become stick-thin? No. Does it mean that I’m into the hippie scene and drink wheatgrass just to fit in? Nah. Does it mean that when I find a dish or technique that I like, try to improve upon it in little ways, … Read More
I would have named this recipe tom yum soup, since the popular Thai dish is certainly its inspiration. But it’s missing a few crucial — and difficult to find — ingredients, and prepared rather on the fly instead of slow-simmered. It wouldn’t seem quite right to purists of Thai cuisine. It is, however, absolutely right to those looking to quench their appetite for something a little exotic, restorative and refreshing, and you don’t have much time.
Carpe diem — asparagus season is here! This is no time for beating around the bush(el). At Greenmarkets and farm stands, you’ll see plenty of sprue asparagus right now, too, the first tender shoots that are often as skinny as coffee stirrers. I had the rare pleasure of snapping a spindly green one straight from the soil at Sang Lee Farms last weekend, and eating it raw right then. (I’ll bet that anyone who claims not liking asparagus has never … Read More
Ughhh… I am not recommending you go into making this for the first time late on a Wednesday night. Ughhh… Of all the finicky nonsense that plagues much of gourmet, frou-frou, highbrow cooking, why this common street food snack so ridiculously delicate a process? I’ll chalk it up to two major things: my inexperience with the ingredients — the rice (or “vermicelli”) noodles and the rice wrappers — and with how to handle them. How wet can the wrappers get … Read More