Month: May 2009

Pulled chicken sandwich with apple slaw and sweet corn

Sometimes good barbecue doesn’t reinvent the wheel. Sometimes it doesn’t even require you to go outside. I shredded some leftover roasted chicken (it had been marinated in a garlicky gochujang barbecue sauce) and warmed it in some basic hickory barbecue sauce with a little apple […]

Grilled eggplant and heirloom tomato panini with chevre and kalamata tapenade

Yay! Summery weekend weather started on Friday, and the lovely log of French goat cheese that’s been languishing in my fridge got its day in the sun. The first good heirloom tomatoes starting showing up in stores, and I was powerless. An eggplant and a […]

Don’t Call it a Comeback


Yay! I’m over the (first) hump and can eat real food again. I can cook it too, without being too tired or tummy-achy to stand or smell food aromas hitting my face. But I’ve had to start out slow. I’ve sort of lost my groove, a little.

On Tuesday I really wanted a pot pie-type comfy food, since it’s been a typical cold, wet Oregon May. The slugs have annihilated my vegetable sprouts and even sawed halfway through my beloved dragon arum (Dracunculus vulgaris) – a devastating blow! I thought about making a pot “pie” inside a loaf of bread, and picked up some organic bread dough. Scott chimed in about making them single-servings like hum bao, and I heartily concurred. I whipped up a batch of chicken pot pie filling, taking care to reduce the gravy somewhat to avoid utter soggage. But oh, the calamity. They fell apart before I could even pinch them together. I threw the whole mess into a casserole and just baked it with the bread dough strewn lazily across the top.

Tragically, the bread part ended up completely leaden, and my gravy reduction yielded a dry interior to the mess. Sigh. I think my lower lip stuck out the entire time we ate.

The next day I was craving soup, and even wanted something spicy. I tossed around a few ideas (one of which I’ll save for another time – it might be a Thing) and settled on a variation on the highly plastic minestrone. I made a hearty tortellini, sausage and cannelini minestra with a piquant arrabbiata broth simmered with onions, carrots, garlic, zucchini (sauteed first in the flavorful Italian sausage fat) and best of all, a thick Parmesan rind to enrich the whole affair. I tossed in some cheese tortellini (and a can of cannelinis at the end), et voilĂ . Top with a thick piece of garlicky bruscetta and finely grated Parmigiano Regiano, and I think I’m back.

This weekend: grill therapy.

Almost ready, I swear.

Sorry for the lag in blogging over the past few weeks. It’s not even that I’m too busy this time, it’s just that I’ve cooked exactly twice since the halibut post (grilled cheese with tomato soup and penne with jarred tomato sauce, though that hardly […]