[cooking] Simple and Delicious

I pick on Dollar for his love of bland food. He would be happy with buttered egg noodles for supper. Or a bowl of white rice. I prefer more complex taste sensations. But I realized last night that my favorite "boring" meal is chicken and bread. Particularly Thomas Keller's Favorite Simple Roast Chicken accompanied by No-Knead bread. A slice of the crusty, rustic loaf dipped into the chicken drippings is heaven for me. And it really doesn't get any better than juicy chicken meat with crispy, salty skin.

While on vacation, I made Dollar watch Food Network (I wouldn't give up the remote). One recipe that caught my attention was this Farfalle with Broccoli. Feeling the itch to cook as soon as we unpacked, I made it from memory. It was a simple recipe but turned out rather... bland (guess who liked it?). I will say that I forgot the Parmesan, and that might have pulled the whole thing together. I would make this again (without black pepper- I only added 5-6 turns of the grinder to the whole thing and it was overpowering).

I tried making a frittata again- this time in a mere 6 inch pan. Perfecto. Nice inch/inch and a half thick wedges. This is going to appear regularly during weekend breakfasts.

Food from the farmer's market has been recently cooked. I can't remember the particular vendors but here's what I thought:

1. Buffalo Burgers: two thumbs up

2. Elk Sausages- Guinness version, Harpoon IPA version: one thumb up, one thumb down. I didn't particularly like the taste of either, but I'm not sure if it was because of the elk meat or because they were "flavored". I'd be willing to try the plain.

3. Pork Tenderloin: two thumbs up. Although mine was small (0.58 lb) it was tender, delicious and just the right size for two people to share.

4. Asparagus: One thumb up, one thumb down. Tasted good but the stalks bundled together ranged from one inch in diameter to 1/8 inch in diameter. I'm not kidding. Some as thick as a young tree and some thinner than a pencil. This totally messes up how to cook it. I not only had to slice the thicker ones lengthwise and start cooking them sooner (and add the thinnest ones only at the very end of cooking), but the ones early into the pan got over-seasoned (or even all the seasoning), while the ones added later barely got any at all. Like I said, it was good but the size differences made even, uniform cooking more of a challenge.

Tonight will be rice and beans. They served beans at every place we went to eat at in Puerto Rico and Dollar loved them. We'll see if this recipe (which looks like the ones we had) comes close.


Shelby said...

mmm...rice and beans...so yummy.

I want to try buffalo burgers! Do they sell them at the summer farmers markets too? I have to try and get down there to have a look around...I haven't been since this winter.

amy said...

These burgers I might actually have gotten at Flavors of the Valley. But there were at least three different meat vendors at the Norwich Farmer's Market this past Saturday. I'm waiting until my freezer is bare before stockpiling again.

Anonymous said...

I like angel hair with lemon juice and salt.... simple...bland maybe, but man I could eat that for every dinner. Or pasta with a little butter... go Dollar!!

We picked up buffalo burgers from a farm I saw at flavors, I can't think of their name but they are near Warner NH. We served them up at a recent bbq and overall, everyone liked them. Cooking them was a little tricky on the grill, because I was warned "low heat" and the grill is a bit tempermental. We also had some kabobs... um my only word or warning on those....Marinate. Seriously.