Tag: Flavor

Friday Finds 7:26:13

Another whammy of a week. I’ll tell you more about it when the dust has settled. Who knows when that’ll be. All I know is, sometimes life gives you lemons, and you can’t even see that they’re lemons, you think they’re just these ugly sour things. And even though you know that you could potentially make lemonade out of them, you’re just not quite sure how to go about it, and what recipe to use, or if you should even use a recipe at all. Right now, I’m working on writing my own recipe, I guess. Here’s to hoping it’s delicious. Now, onto the Friday Finds.

1. Green Smoothies

Green Machine Smoothie from What's Gaby Cooking // Friday Finds on Serious Crust, by Annie Fassler
Green Machine Smoothie from What’s Gaby Cooking // Friday Finds

There’s a juice and smoothie cart in Portland called Sip, and it has this smoothie called Tropical Greens that I am so in love with. The thing about Sip is that because it’s all local seasonal organic etc. these smoothies don’t come cheap. So I need to start making my own. This one on What’s Gaby Cooking looks pretty similar to the one I’ve been buying on a regular basis for over a year now. Let’s see if it lives up to its inspiration…

2. Egg Yolk Ravioli

Egg Yolk Ravioli from Licking the Plate // Friday Finds on Serious Crust, by Annie Fassler
Egg Yolk Ravioli from Licking the Plate // Friday Finds

I mean, come on, does that not look like one of the most beautiful things you could eat? First, it’s fresh ravioli. Second, it has a runny egg yolk. Third, there is a MAGICAL RUNNY EGG YOLK INSIDE OF YOUR FRESH RAVIOLI. Find the recipe (and some beautiful photos) over here on Licking the Plate.

3. Avocado and Cajun Seasoning

Yum: avocado with cajun seasoning // Friday Finds on Serious Crust, by Annie Fassler
Yum: avocado with cajun seasoning // Friday Finds

My roommate Carmelle has turned me on to my new favorite snack: half an avocado, sliced, and sprinkled with some King Cajun Cream Seasoning. It’s filling, full of healthy fats, and tastes dang good.

4. Passionfruit Butter

Passion Butter from Cook Republic // Friday Finds on Serious Crust, by Annie Fassler
Passion Butter from Cook Republic // Friday Finds

If I knew where to find fresh passionfruit, I would immediately be so all over this recipe¬†on Cook Republic (which, if you haven’t discovered yet, get your butt over there). I love citrus curd, and passionfruit is no exception. My sisters and I have always been big fans of the little wrinkly fruit. When my little sister and I spent a month in Vietnam one summer, our host mom found out that Molly really liked passionfruit, and so bought bags of it fresh from the market and would make us fresh squeezed passionfruit juice every morning. Nothing can really compare to that, but this curd looks almost as delicious.

5. Flavor Combination: Saffron and Raspberry

Saffron Raspberries from 101 Cookbooks // Friday Finds on Serious Crust, by Annie Fassler
Saffron Raspberries from 101 Cookbooks // Friday Finds

This recipe on 101 Cookbooks for Saffron Raspberries looks really interesting, and got me thinking about the flavor combination. It’s really intriguing to me, and I’m thinking it might make a good ice cream or something like that… Any ideas on how to combine the two? Savory? Sweet? In a pie? A sauce for chicken? I’d love to try a few possibilities!

Soba Noodles with Mango and Eggplant

Soba noodles, eggplant, onion, mango, cilantro, basil, and dressing all tossed into a bowl.

Jonah slices and dices all the colorful ingredients for the soba noodles.
It feels very weird to spread a pile of noodles on a dish towel to dry... But I'll do pretty much anything Ottolenghi tell me to.

As I mentioned in an earlier post, Jonah and I made dinner for my mom and her boyfriend back in December. Now I believe I have told you of my love for Yotam Ottolenghi’s cookbook “Plenty,” yes? This meal was no exception. The meal was all vegetarian, and 2/3 dishes were from that cookbook. The meal was light, refreshing, and packed with flavor. Not to mention the great company.

I fear that I am reaching a point where I cannot keep posting variations of these recipes, I just need to tell you to please, please, please go buy this cookbook. Even if vegetarian food isn’t your thing, even if the photos don’t make your stomach growl, even if the lists of ingredients leave you with questions swirling around in your hear. I beg you. Just go buy it. And then, please proceed to make everything in it, even if it doesn’t jump off the page. Every single dish I have made from this book (as well as his other book, “Jerusalem”) has been so lovely and flavorful that I wish I had tripled them all so I could enjoy the leftovers or share with a bunch of my friends.

Back to the dinner. These room temperature soba noodles are one of the few recipes in the book that did jump off the page for me. But somehow, I still hadn’t made it. While it’s a little prep-heavy, trust me, it’s worth it. Packing a lot of flavor and lots of little bites with different tastes (onion, eggplant, peppers, mango, the list goes on…), this recipe is bound to be a crowd pleaser. I can see it being especially good for kids. What kids don’t love noodles and mango? That’s what I thought: none.

Soba Noodles with Mango and Eggplant

Ingredients

1/2 cup rice vinegar
3 Tbl sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 crushed garlic cloves
1/2 of a red chile, finely chopped
1 tsp sesame oil
zest and juice of a lime
1 cup sunflower oil (we used canola)
2 eggplants, cut into ~1 inch cubes
a bag of soba noodles
1 large ripe mango (let’s be honest, more than one probably couldn’t hurt…), cut into ~3/4 inch cubes or thin strips
1 2/3 cups fresh basil leaves, roughly chopped
2 cups cilantro leaves, roughly chopped
1/2 red onion, thinly sliced (think paper thin, if you can)

Instructions

In small pot, warm the vinegar, sugar, and salt until the sugar just dissolves. Remove from heat, then add the garlic, chile, and sesame oil, and, once it’s cool, the lime zest and juice.

In a large saute pan, heat the oil and fry up the eggplant. You’ll probably need to do this in a few batches. But you want the eggplant to be nice and golden brown. After all the eggplant is cooked, put it in a colander in the sink, sprinkle (“liberally”) with salt, and leave to drain.

While cooking the eggplant, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Cook the soba noodles in the boiling water – you want them to be soft, but still a little al dente. Drain the noodles and rinse them under cold water to stop them cooking. Spread them on a dish towel to dry.

Now the fun part: throw the noodles, dressing, mango, eggplant, onion, and half the basil and cilantro in a bowl and toss to coat/combine everything. You can make this a couple hours ahead of serving, and stop here, letting it sit to absorb flavors and come to room temperature. When you’re ready to serve it, add the rest of the herbs. Enjoy!

Mom's dinner prep activities: playing tug-of-war with Lulu while Jonah and I chopped and sauteed in the kitchen a few feet away.