Now that it's finally been confirmed that eggs are good for you, I'm all about eggs in the morning. They're an awesome way to get protein in your body, which increases satiety, and they're cheap. I get farmer's eggs from my grocery guy, because they're just the same price as the dubiously "cage-free" eggs that see the huge mark-up at the grocery store, and they taste, well...egg-ier.
Here's three things I've learned to do with eggs that has changed my consumption forevermore.
Omelets. If the omelet intimidated you before, read, and preferably watch, kitchen science geek Alton Brown teach you. The secret? No one else in the known world refrigerates their eggs. Let your eggs come up to room temperature before using them, they'll cook more delicately if they don't have that temperature difference to travel from raw to cooked. Alton suggests a hot water bath for five minutes while your eggs are still in the shell. The rest of the technique is equally awesome.
Scrambled eggs. The only people who know how to make scrambled eggs right are my dad and Shopsin's. Again, room temperature eggs help, and I use a spatula rather than a fork, because forking up (...ha!) my non-stick pans isn't in my budget.
Poached eggs. People all have their opinions on this one (vinegar! matches! plastic wrap!) but I figure that working cooks have been doing this way longer than most of us, and cranking out poached eggs by the dozen every day, so it's best to watch one.
Over the weekend, we had some nasty weather. Which makes me want to get all domestic and whatnot and putter around the kitchen. Like Nigella, I prefer puttering when things are "fiddly, not difficult".
I really, really love tomatoes, and my favorite grocery guy at Lionette's Market knows it. He convinced me to buy a 20 pound box of tomatoes to try my hand at home canning. "Just make a decent tomato sauce and follow the directions. It's not hard." And it wasn't!
Buy tomatoes. Haul home. Make sauce. Follow directions for canning. Devour leftovers with lots of bread, forsaking all notion of low-carb eating. Send the rest to friends. (Requests welcome!)
I made two kinds - one an improvisation on this arrabbiata with lots of peppers/cayenne/parsley, and another that was more freeform with loads of roasted garlic. Plus a tomato jam that makes me crazy.
Jenny got me a belated birthday gift which came as a total surprise to exactly me: a much-longed-for Kitchenaid Mixer! Funnily, she brought it by ten minutes after I put something in the oven, swearing to myself "goddamn, I wish I had an electric mixer instead of this piece of shit whisk."
Sometimes, making friends with random strangers pays off well.
I walk Stella in the alleyway next to our office quite a bit, since I bring her to work a few times a week. There's been a new restaurant, Zuppa, going up in said alleyway to take the place of the abandonded café monk. (I'm guessing Zuppa'll serve, among other things, soup.) I've played with the painter's kid, I've talked to all the workers a few times, and today, the owner invited me to a tasting dinner this Thursday, because they're opening next week.
Anyone in SF want to come get some free snacks in SoMA with me?
The change in the weather causes my asthma to act up and I almost always get a bronchial “thing” this time of year. The worst part of being sick is being stuck in the house most of the day, but the best part is I have an excuse to eat whatever I want. Fortunately for me, Lucca Ravioli is only a block away from my house. Lucca's a deli that's been open since 1929 - their boxes for their ravioli still list the phone number like Mission 5-5555, and they have the best everything - sandwiches, take and bake pizza, cheeses, olive oil, fresh and dried pasta. The guys behind the counter all have east-coast working class accents that make me miss being back home.
“Hey kiddo, what’ll ya have?” “Hiya. Four stuffed peppers, and today’s fresh rav, please.” “You want sauce?” “I – um, I have sauce at home?” “Do you have homemade sauce! Cos I do. Are you a saucemaker?” “Sometimes...?” “That’s what I thought. I’m the saucemaker, cupcake. You want marinara with meat or without?”
A little slice of the East coast, slathered in sarcasm.
Between phone calls to my mother for recipe tips and hanging out with the entire crew of fools tomorrow, I will be cooking things. And not just any things, chilren, but disgustingly fattening things. Some of you know I have been on a diet. Tomorrow is a reprieve. Tomorrow is a Dionysian display of wine, cheese and napping. Boy do I heart turkey lurkey.
That being said, though I luuuuurve my mama's stuffing like any kid should, there was a friendly man at the grocery today who suggested the sweet taters in the first place, then said "you drizzle some of that butter and sugar left over from the sweet potatos on your stuffing, see? All sweet, buttery and good."
Happy Thanksgiving, yall. Hug all your loved ones and eat lotsa food.