Archive | May, 2010

Stuff & Things

27 May

There’s been so much going on this May, that I haven’t been able to tell you about all the things I have wanted to.  So here we go!

First up: Eggplant Soup. Yes. Eggplant. Soup. If you thought squash soup was weird, you’re going to think eggplant soup is bonkers. But you’ll be wrong.  It is delicious.  I first tried it at Destino in Chatham, and then Mexican Radio in Hudson had a version of it, and then it was a special at Destino again.  And though it was different at the two Mexican restaurants, it was delicious at both.  It is silky and yummy and very, very easy to make at home.  Grill or roast a few eggplants, caramelize some onions, add some broth, puree and add creme fraiche, crema or heavy cream to your taste and garnish with a little salsa fresca and a squirt of lime.  Yum!

Next: Sifting. We’ve been doing a lot of this.  First I had to sift the compost pile.  Twice.  And then there was the tomato garden, which we’ve been sifting for weeks now. But it’s almost done, to the point where I was able to make some beds and plant some tomatoes (though I’m not sure they’re going to make it, they were all kind of weenie, and it has been hot Upstate this week). And then there was flour.  I made pancakes from scratch for the first time ever a few weekends ago, after an aerobic spate of dirt sifting.  I don’t know if I was just very hungry ofrif these really are the best pancakes ever, but I’m going with the latter.  Sadly, I left the recipe Upstate (it’s, naturally, from Amy Bess Miller’s The Best of Shaker Cooking) so if anyone has a copy laying around, email me the recipe for Apple Pancakes and I’ll post it here. *

Cluck cluck! Head below the jump for a favorite farm and a very cool old diner.

The Walking Onion

18 May

I just had to share with you this crazy onion.

It, an Egyptian Walking Onion, was one of the first things I bought for the garden nearly two years ago now when we bought the house. I plopped it into one of the previously-overgrown garden plots, not really realizing that walking meant “walking” and that the onion would try to skip its way across the garden.

Early this spring I dug it and all its little bulbils out of that plot and plopped them into a new spot, outside the garden where they can run free. I think they like the feel of freedom, because they’re going wild.  And I just can’t stop looking at those scapes; they’re simultaneously amazing and creepy.

But mostly I can’t wait for the aerial onions, which toe a fine line between shallots and garlic and make some of the best vinaigrette we’ve ever had.

And then there’s Tom Thumb, a tiny little pea that’s just perfect for growing in containers (I’m lookin’ at you Hungry Bruno).  Tom obviously wants to be the star of the class, because there he sits, on the upper deck in his little pot, waving his first teeny tiny pea around like he thinks he’s me in 6th grade Science class.

Lucky for Tom, I love a show-off.

A Stove Story

13 May

I recently became enamored of a stove. (And of Google Books, too. You’ll see why below).

On Saturday night after a dinner featuring our first salad taken entirely from the garden, I settled down on the couch to do a little light Web surfing.  It started innocently enough. A little Facebook, a little New York Times, a little Twitter.

My Twitter feed is a little chaotic.  I tried for awhile to keep two Twitter accounts, one for work and one for me.  I spend my days as an editor at the business magazine Forbes and I spend the rest of my time gardening, cooking and being silly. So for awhile I had one for Serious Ann and another for Real Ann. But I couldn’t keep up with both and so now my Twitter feed is a motley collection of musings on Dow plunges, cooking artichokes and Scottie puppiesFollow with care.

But back to the stove.  On Saturday I noticed a bunch of tweets from a woman I follow about a really cool sounding not-for-profit salvage store in Astoria. In addition to sinks and diner signs and chairs, she also tweeted about coffins and topiary and heart-shaped hot tubs.  So I clicked over and started poking around Build It Green! NYC’s Featured Items.

I immediately fell in love with the historic terracotta tiles from the amazing Sun Building in downtown Manhattan (I would love to redo our kitchen with these). And for some reason, I really like these metal and wood Police desks from the ’80s.  But it’s this 19th century stove that really caught my attention.

Won’t you head down the rabbit hole with me? Yes? Then hop below the jump.