This post is part of a compendium of posts from kitchens around the world. It’s especially wonderful to drool over the tomatoes and other vegetables harvested by bloggers in the Southern Hemisphere this time of year, when we in the North are struggling to find a creative way to use yet another head of cabbage or bunch of kale. Use the link to Sherrys Pickings to find them and drool away.
My kitchen is not particularly creative these days as I would much rather be outside in the garden. Meals have been on the simple side.
A roast chicken serves us for several meals, it’s a favorite and there are several versions from simple to fancy on this blog. If you have time, do rub a couple of teaspoons of kosher salt over the skin and let the chicken rest, breast side up and uncovered, in the fridge for at least an hour (I’ve left it for 48 hours). Then bring it to room temperature before roasting, about an hour is plenty of time depending on the temperature of your home. Leave the salt on when roasting, the skin will be crackly crisp and the meat tender. That short dry brine makes a huge difference to the final juiciness.
This quick mid-week’s version was coated with a mixture of peach jam and Dijon mustard (1:1) before being popped in the oven. To speed the cooking time, use a smaller roasting dish and open the legs out. It’s usually the inner part of the thigh that takes longer to cook when a chicken is traditionally trussed.
There were a few noteworthy dishes though…
For a more robust take on my roast cabbage with cream and parmesan, I made Melissa Clark’s streamlined stuffed cabbage. Ms. Clark is one of my favorite food writers and I find her recipes are frequent winners.
Her recipe (published in the NY Times) had a paste of garlic, anchovies, parmesan rubbed between the leaves before roasting. A sprinkling of chopped walnuts for the last 10 minutes, and a garnish of more grated parmesan and chopped parsley completed the dish.
It definitely had a ‘South of France’ vibe and was delicious.
In my kitchen I have some new containers to keep my fridge organized. These were a gift from a houseguest who swore by them. They do keep produce fresh much longer.
But just every bit as valuable, they allow me to see whats in the fridge rather than produce languishing in the back of the vegetable drawer.
In My Kitchen I prepared a Moroccan inspired dinner for friends who are finally departing on a much delayed vacation trip. On the menu was a salad of roasted cauliflower, carrots, couscous, garbanzo beans, currents, almonds and green olives.
As well as an eggplant and tomato spread, feta, stuffed grape leaves, and olives.
It was a beautiful spring day and we ate outside in the sunshine.
And lastly, our puppy Shanna has yet to meet a vegetable she doesn’t like. Here she is begging for a piece of broccoli stem. Which she promptly ate, and requested more.