What I'm Cooking This Week

Feb 23, 2009 by

"Many cards and letters have come in requesting" some sample menus. That’s what my old French teacher used to say before he gave us some disagreeable exercise. I’m trying three new recipes this week, which I hope will be easy and delicious, anything but disagreeable. If they're winners, I will post them on this blog.

Moosewood Tonight, I’ll serve "Warm Salad," from the Moosewood vegetarian cookbook (http://www.nibblous.com/recipe/347), "featuring an assortment of ultra nutritious leafy greens, lightly cooked and delicately marinated."

I just came home from Central Market with armloads of ingredients: escarole (a curly salad), red Swiss chard, Savoy cabbage, mustard greens, leeks, cauliflower, celery and mushrooms. It's marinated in just vinegar, Parmesan and pepper. Seems like it could use a little olive oil to me. We'll see. With it, I’ll probably serve a garlic-pesto marinated pork loin I got free with a coupon.

Tomorrow, I have planned "Jicama, Orange and Fennel Salad," 

also from the Moosewood cookbook (http://www.bigoven.com/102468-Jicama,-Orange-and-Fennel-Salad-recipe.html).

Jicama is a Mexican tuber resembling a light brown turnip, very crisp and fresh. This salad also includes a few sprigs of arugula (which will come from my garden), and 10 leaves of a Belgian endive.

It has a dressing of olive oil, orange juice, balsamic and raspberry vinegars, garlic and honey. It also calls for a garnish of Pickled Red Onions, which I made yesterday.

So far, we are eating a very caveman diet: greens, roots, meat. The kids each took a bag of raw Brazil nuts as part of their lunch today (along with applesauce and granola bar and who knows what else). They usually take leftovers of whatever we had the night before.

With the salad, I’ll serve Spanakopita, a Greek dish: creamy cheese and spinach filling between layers of buttery, flaky pastry. Not so caveman, but sounds yummy. It’s from one of Cynthia Pedregon’s Peach Tree Tea Room cookbooks. The Peach Tree is a little restaurant up the road in Fredericksburg, Texas.

Sometime in the next three days, I’ll probably use the extra leeks to make my French mother-in-law’s famous carrot soup, one of my husband's favorites. It’s just a bunch of carrots, a couple of potatoes, and leeks (added to cook later than the rest), all chopped and cooked in water till tender, with maybe a bay leaf or two, maybe a garlic clove or two. It’s blended with a soup mixer, though I like to keep as many of the leek pieces whole as I can, so I scoop them out before blending. Add some a salt and pepper and serve with a little cream.

I hope not to buy anything more until Thursday morning. If we run short, I’ll pull out a few eggs and make an omelet, or maybe boil some noodles. I only spent $44. Not too bad for three days’ worth of food, I thought.


 French Kids Don’t Get Fat / Anna Migeon / 23 February 2009 / All rights reserved