June 24, 2007

Palle Tackles Pasta

As strange as it may seem, given that he has cooked braised rabbit, Proven├žal daube, merguez sausage, an assortment of chilis and even his own hot sauce, this is Palle's first Italian pasta dish.

In what has become his usual research style, working without a recipe, he contemplated some favourite Italian flavours, and came up with prosciutto and radicchio. After that, some online surfing led him to asparagus, flat leafed parsley, garlic, and olive oil, as well as some simple preparation methods, and he set about making dinner.

When I came home from work, he was setting up his mise, something at which he is far more meticulous than I tend to be, measuring out some fettuccine, lining up balsamic vinegar and chile oil, and the rest of his ingredients, and all that was required of me was to stay out of the way. It's always lovely to come home from work to a home-cooked dinner that seems to appear like magic on the table. This one was delicious.

Palle has gone from King of the Stirfry (pretty much the only thing he had really cooked from scratch when I met him) to someone capable of either following an attractive recipe or hybridizing his own to good effect. Now that he's not working 18 hour days, he has more time and inclination to cook. In this new kitchen of ours, we might just both be always in the kitchen. Fortunately, it's a pretty big kitchen.

June 20, 2007

Hello, again

I didn't mean to go away. Really. A week or two hiatus, I thought, and I'd be back at it. Right after the move. I didn't mean for it to be a month!

The move was considerably more exhausting than anticipated, and I thought I was well braced for it. My last move, eight and a half years ago, was a comparative breeze, completed in under two hours, with the house fully set up by the next day. That was before I had so much stuff, of course, and before I had arthritis. I know better, now. Next move (not soon, I hope) I will hire professionals for the whole thing.
Meals have been a bit haphazard in the last while, too. A lot of eating out while packing up dishes, and then unpacking dishes, and of course, exploring our new neighbourhood - blessedly full of little cafes, diners, and coffee shops, with some attractive-looking more upscale places, too. We may no longer be a mere stroll from fine French restaurants, but there's an exciting upscale Mexican place that we're itching to try, and we can still make it to our old favourites by bus.

I'm starting to get into the swing of the new kitchen, and I'll unpacking the digital camera shortly. In the meantime, I'll leave you with two pictures of meals that I made just shortly before we packed up...

a repertoire favourite - Sausage and Hominy Chili

...and a highly experimental baked portobello mushroom, filled with the sort of spinachy-feta-garlicky sort of thing you'd use to fill a spanakopita. 20 minutes in the oven - delicious!

What you can see (almost) in the corner of the mushroom photo: a brand new, soon to be classic - Quinoa Salad (recipe coming soon!)