Teeny Tiny Kitchen

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TeenyTinyKitchen - Big Recipes, Tiny Kitchen - Jedd & Launie Kettler
Spicy Thai Basil Sauce PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Thursday, 26 September 2013 17:10

 

 

 

 

“I found Thai basil, I found Thai basil!” Jedd happily yelled when he walked through the door.

 

“Whut?” I asked looking up from the computer.

 

“I found it, I finally found it,” he said.

 

And, indeed, he finally had.

 

Thai basil doesn't seem that exotic an ingredient, but we've never seen it. We've checked grocery stores and health food co-ops, but we've just never been able to get our hands on it. So suddenly having a bunch of the slightly peppery basil to play with, felt a little daunting.

 

Then – of course – I fell prey to “Launie hoarding.” It had taken years and years of searching, so of course I wanted to make something spectacular with it. Which meant that I trimmed off the ends, and stuck it in a jar where it sat for two weeks.

 

Jedd was just as “hoard-ish.”

 

“We need to do something really special with it,” he said.

 

“I know, but what? Thai chicken? In a soup? What about a noodle dish?” I suggested.

 

“Any of those sound good,” he said.

 

Which should have given me direction, but instead made me more nervous about what to do with the precious bunch of herbs.

 

So, there it sat.

 

Finally, I decided to “seize the day” and combined it with some things in the fridge and the vegetable bowl to create a spicy sauce.

 

Which was a wise decision. Instead of blowing the whole batch on one dish, we've been eating the sauce on vegetable wraps, chicken, beef, rice and noodles. It's been the bedrock of our meals for the last few days because it's sweet, but salty, citrusy but hot.

 

If you only have sweet basil to play with, add some black pepper and a little fennel to mimic the taste.

 

 
Spicy Farmers Market Homefries and Scallions PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Sunday, 08 September 2013 17:40

 

Tis the season to be drowning in produce, fa la la la la, la la la la.

 

It's the most wonderful time of the year!

 

This week we had baby potatoes in our CSA and at the farmers market we scored with some MONGO scallions. They were so big that I had a difficult time envisioning what to make with them. So I braised a few and threw some into a stir-fry.

 

And then I made them into a big breakfast on Sunday morning. I could have eaten the whole batch myself. In fact, I could have eaten them for lunch and dinner too. They were incredibly addictive. And the scallions gave them a freshness (and bite) that's normally missing in homefries.

 

If you have some beautiful and large scallions that you want to play with this summer, give these guys a shot. I'm pretty sure you're going to love them.

 

 
Panzanella, the Perfect Salad for a Picnic PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Tuesday, 27 August 2013 18:11

 

 

Labor day is fast approaching and it typically leaves me a little stymied. Especially if I'm invited to a gathering and the hosts say, “Don't bring pasta salad, we've got that covered.”

 

Because then - of course - that's all I can think of to bring.

 

“Corkscrew pasta with dill and tomatoes!”

 

Nope. That's a pasta salad.

 

“Campanelle with mozzarella, olives and basil!”

 

No, sir. Not only is that pasta, it would also involve mozzarella sitting out for hours in the hot sun. Sweaty, warm mozzarella? No thanks.

 

“Blerg!” yells my inner Liz Lemon.

 

But then it dawned on me to make something that would actually improve the longer it sat out.

 

Panzanella salad.

 

It's meant to be made the day that it's eaten, but it also loves time to marinate. And it's incredibly inexpensive – especially compared to pasta salad.

 

(No joke. Maybe it's just me, but I can't make a good pasta salad for a crowd that costs less than $15.00 Sure, the pasta is inexpensive, but it's the olives, the parmesan, the occasional oil-packed artichoke heart and capers that make my pocket book shiver.)

 

On the other hand, panzanella is meant to be made with ingredients that are dirt cheap this time of year. Also, if you're feeling particularly frugal, you can make the bread yourself and then it's even more inexpensive.

 

This salad also lends itself to what you have laying around. Do you have some cooked beans? Add them in. Do you have some bell peppers kicking around? Add those too.

 

I was lucky enough to have 4 types of tomatoes in my vegetable bowl from our CSA and the farmers market. We have a little basil plant that was groomed for the salad, along with a bunch of parsley in water.

 

So, for four dinner-sized salads, or 8 small salads, I was out of pocket $1.99 for a loaf of bread.

 

Not too shabby for something that bursts with flavor and is incredibly addictive.

 

Although I'm going to give a full recipe, it's more of a guideline depending on what you have on hand. The two tricks are to have day-old bread, and an equal ratio of tomatoes to bread.

 

 
Inspired by Kim: Kale, Parsley and Basil Pesto PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Friday, 09 August 2013 00:09

 

 

 

Last week I was talking to my mother on the phone, when she happened to mention that my cousin, Kim had made kale pesto for the family over the weekend. I promptly filed that away in my head as “something I'd like to try.”

 

So, when Jedd and I went to Stone Hollow Farm's booth at the farmers market and loaded up on basil, parsley and huge-mongo scallions, I remembered Kim's pesto when Jedd started reaching for a bunch of kale.

 

“We need kale, right?” he asked.

 

Gulk.

 

I remembered that we had a bunch of kale (that was larger than our two heads combined) on the bottom shelf.

 

“Nope. We really don't need any more kale.”

 

And when I got home I quickly decided to jump into “pesto-making” mode. When I was done, we didn't even bother to make pasta go along with it. The pesto was so flavorful we just ate it slathered on crusty bread and called that dinner.

 

It was a good meal.

 

Kim, thanks for the inspiration!

 

 
Farmers Market Saturday: Braised Summer Scallions and Baby Onions PDF E-mail
Written by Launie Kettler   
Tuesday, 30 July 2013 00:00

Between our CSA and our addiction to the farmers market, we have an embarrassment of riches right now. And two of the ingredients we are loving at the moment are baby onions and farm fresh scallions that are so big that they can nearly double as leeks.

Which led us to want to braise them.

After they were braised, the onions and scallions were bright and a little lemony from the wine, and very decadent from the butter.

It was a good combination.

These items aren't available all year long, in fact they're not even available all summer long. So, we're enjoying playing with them while they're in season.

 
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