Thursday, April 19, 2012

Make it Big! It just makes sense.

Our Sunday night pot roast dinner was interrupted by an invitation and while we did eat a bit of the roast, and it was lovely, most of it was saved for later in the week.  Last night we had the leftovers and I have to say, the thing cooks say about foods getting better over time... it is just SOOO true. 
So, why don't I always make a double batch when I'm making anything that is braised, slow roasted. And come to think about it,  any soup or stew too! 
I've been cooking for a long time. I suppose some lessons take longer than others? 
New house rule: MAKE IT BIG! Carefully save the leftovers in the freezer or refrigerator. Take advantage of a night off of cooking knowing the dinner waiting in the freezer is even BETTER than the fabulous slow cooked meal you made over the weekend!

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Tomato & Kiwi Inspiration: Caprese

My BFF came over for dinner last night and brought beautiful Italian buffalo mozzarella cheese balls, a few bright red tomatoes on the vine and a handful of basil leaves from her garden. She also brought two very ripe kiwi fruit in need of quick disposal.
She obviously wanted to make a Caprese salad but she had made one the night before and was worried about over dressing the tomatoes.  
"The whole thing gets too soupy and the vinegar overpowers the delicate milk taste of the mozzarella."
I came up with a plan to respect the cheese and use all the beautiful produce.
On a large glass platter she laid down a few mixed greens, then thick tomato slices, thin mozzarella cheese slices and finally slices of the kiwi fruit. I dressed the whole thing very lightly by dripping droplets of Bariani EVOO and then tiny drops of Slide Ridge Honey Wine Vinegar, a sprinkling of sea salt, a light grinding of pepper and then a chiffonade of the basil leaves from her garden. It not only looked spectacular, the taste was amazing! We found a perfect balance of sweet, savory, creamy rich & tang.
So I had every intention of writing up the recipe today... perhaps re making the dish soon to take some pictures.  But instead I searched for a similar recipe and found this:

Kayln's Kitchen recipe for Caprese with Kiwi fruit

She has great pictures & a nice recipe. I suppose I'm not the only one to be inspired by the similarities of the textures - kiwi & tomatoes, the inner gelatinous seed pulp of both, the firm fruit surrounding the chambers. The sweet taste of the kiwi paired with the mozzarella is just as good as the pairing with a tomato and when you get both together, it is magical.  Now I'm wondering about other fruit Caprese ideas... peaches? plums? hmmm.