Teeny Tiny Kitchen

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TeenyTinyKitchen - Big Recipes, Tiny Kitchen - Jedd & Launie Kettler
Blackened Chicken with Grilled Avocados and Jalapenos PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Thursday, 21 August 2014 19:30

 

 

This little dinner is stunning and pretty healthy. And by “pretty healthy,” I mean “very healthy.” The spices are all good for you and avocado and jalapenos? Oh, yeah.

 

Bonus: by grilling the avocado you end up with a wonderfully softened and savory side dish. I just want to grill an avocado two or three times a day.

 

They're that delicious.

 

And grilling the jalapenos takes away some of the spice, and leaves them irresistible.

 

But don't take my word for it. Try this recipe out for yourself. The chicken is spicy, the avocado is creamy and the jalapenos and onions make everything better.

 

 
Proust Had Fond Memories of Madeleines, We Had Cricks In Our Necks. Hello, Berry Whip! PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Sunday, 10 August 2014 20:04

 

Yesterday was my mother's birthday and I told her I would like to make her a birthday dinner - but that she was on her own for her birthday dessert. Because she makes amazing desserts.

 

Why not have the best?

 

So I made her a pork wellington filled with meat and greens - and she made something really special - my grandmother's berry whip.

 

As soon as she uncovered the bowl I grinned.

 

Normally Grammy's berry whip is made with wild strawberries that we'd spend hours picking. To give you an example of the work involved, look at your pinkie nail. When scouring the hills for wild strawberries, if we found one that big it was a score.

 

Score!

 

Needless to say, it would take awhile to pick a cup of the itty-bitty little things. To my grandmother's credit, that should have been a job that she'd just send the kids out to do - just to get us out from underfoot. But, she loves picking fruit and the hunt for the perfect wild strawberry - so she'd be out there with us. And as soon as we hit the one cup mark, we'd get back in the kitchen and Grammy would be prepping the berries.

 

And then the magic would begin.

 

From only three ingredients, this amazing frosting would be created. And no one had any shame about eating dinner so fast that none of it registered in our mouth. It was a race to the finish to get to this frosting.

 

Needless to say, my mother used berries from a bush - not the "hillside scour" - for the frosting yesterday, because wild strawberries are out of season. But the second I saw this, it reminded me of climbing hills, walking gently so we didn't crush any little strawberries, and the massive crick in our collective necks that followed.

 

Proust had his madeleine cookies to remind him of childhood, but in my family we have something even better. Berry whip.

 

So, so, so, so, good.

 
Mozzarella and Thyme Stuffed Squash Blossoms (My Little Ode To the Sopranos) PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Tuesday, 05 August 2014 15:23

 

 

It's amazing how easy it is to lose touch with friends. Between life and work, sometimes we're not great about driving a few miles to see each other.

 

But when we do, it's pretty wonderful.

 

So, a couple of weeks ago when we spent the day and evening with friends it was like a little holiday. A little holiday that ended with a present!

 

My friend Kelee and I were hanging out on her back lawn chatting and drinking beer, when somehow the subject came up of an ingredient I'd always wanted to cook with – squash blossoms.

 

“Why squash blossoms?” she asked.

 

“Because stuffed squash blossoms are in my favorite episode of the Sopranos. I've never had them, and they sounded really cool.”

 

(Ugh. Just typing that makes we want to re-watch “Funhouse.” But I haven't been able to watch any Sopranos since James Gandolfini died. I'm still in DEEP denial about that. Nopeity, nope, nope. Didn't happen. La, la, la.)

 

Then Kelee invited me to look at her garden – and she had a bunch of squash blossoms! She gave me four to take home.

 

And it's to her and Jedd's credit that they didn't think that I was a little odd when I jumped up and down.

 

 

I made them this afternoon and they were wonderful. They were floral, even though they'd been lightly fried and the warm mozzarella and thyme melted with each bite.

 

Oh, and since the only cost I was out was oil and mozzarella, the fried squash blossoms set me back about $1.50. Not bad, Kelee and her garden. Not bad.

 

 
Yes, Virginia. You Can Freeze Scallions and Make a Sriracha Pancake with Them PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Monday, 04 August 2014 17:48

 

The title is a play off of the movie “Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus,” because for the last two years I've only had these amazing scallions in the summer and was stymied about how to make them last.

 

Then it dawned on me - freeze them for the winter! Yay! It's like Christmas in August. So, instead of having my refrigerator overrun with two-foot scallions that go bad before I can use all of them, I have them for soups, stews, sauces and salsas in December.

 

 

(Just so you can wonder at the amazing size of these scallions, I placed them next to new kitchen twine and a 50 cent piece for scale.)

 

Phew. Problem solved.

 

But, I was curious how they'd reheat. Would the texture be okay? Would they be watery? So, I decided to make a savory pancake with them – and use sriracha.

 

And since Jedd and I have been binging on "Top Chef," I thought it might tickle him to be a “judge,” so he'd get to say things like, “flavor profile,” “texture” and espouse about seasoning.

 

Some couples hike. Some couples shop. We like to talk about food.

 

His notes: “The sriracha gave it a good and spicy bite without being overpowering and the pancake was seasoned well. The texture was good, and it would be a pretty delicious post-bar dish. As easy to cook as scrambled eggs, but way better.”

 

 
Fresh Pea Soup with Mint and Lemon PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Sunday, 03 August 2014 22:43

 

 

Even though the smell of split pea soup appeals to me, I've just never loved the taste. It's kind of weird. How can you like the way something smells and not enjoy the flavor? Especially when ham is involved? It's a little mystery. Jedd doesn't even like the smell. Which, again, is weird. There's ham in that bowl!

 

So in the back of my head, I had discounted all pea soups as something I wasn't crazy about.

 

And then we went to Montreal about four years ago with some friends. We were meandering around Ville Marie or Old Montreal (I really don't remember which one) when the sky opened up and it started pouring. Which meant that we needed to find a place for dinner “toot sweet.”

 

We stumbled onto a charming French restaurant (which is like shooting fish in a barrel in Montreal) and ordered wine. The restaurant was so small - and the people were so kind – that Jedd and I had a hard time turning down the complimentary bowl of pea soup they offered us.

 

With the kind waiter watching us (we looked like drowned rats so we probably brought out his paternal instinct), we all took a bite of the soup.

 

Our friends assured him that it was very good. And that made him happy.

 

Jedd and I had a different reaction.

 

 
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