Where the sage in the turnip dish comes from!
The theme this week could be home-style dinners from around the world. Well, the edamame dish is a little fancy, but not too much.
- Cuban coconut rice and black beans with plantains: with sweet peppers, this dish is one of the tastiest variations on rice and beans I’ve ever seen.
- Sofrito collard greens: finely chopped, slow-cooked greens with a tasty homemade seasoning base filled with deep umami flavors.
- Colcannon: an Irish dish with potatoes, kale, carrots, and rutabaga, with Brooklyn stout beer gravy.
- Cider-glazed turnips and apples with sage and tempeh “bacon”
- Shanghai-style edamame with five spice tofu, goji berries, and soba noodles: this dish contains XO sauce, which is sometimes called “caviar of the Orient.” It’s a recent Chinese invention served in trendy urban Chinese restaurants. Although it contains no brandy, its name inexplicably pays homage to classy XO brandy. I don’t quite understand this sauce, but I like eating it, and I guess that’s all that really matters. XO sauce usually contains dried shrimp and scallops – in my version dried porcini mushrooms, Chinese fermented black beans, and hiziki seaweed stand in for the seafood.
- Stir fried broccoli and Asian greens with ginger
- Soup: Poblano pepper, corn, and oyster mushroom chowder: yet another week when I want to say “this is the best soup I make!!”
- Salad dressing: Classic carrot ginger dressing
What a beautiful week we’ve got coming up. Let’s get right to it:
- Oktoberfest dinner: tempeh sauerbraten-style with spaetzle and squash: homemade spaetzle, tangy and extra delicious because they’re made with my 30-year-old sourdough starter (I started making it when I was two years old, yep.), as well as a lush, complex, gingery, winey sauerbraten sauce, homemade chickpea tempeh and roasted squash.
- Braised red cabbage with apples: fall on the plate, with local cabbage and apples!
- Seitan bourguignon with green vegetables: A real old-fashioned meal, except, you know…better.
- Mashed potatoes with scallions and horseradish: it’s potato season, yep!
- Thai-style fall vegetables with braised tofu: a light Thai curry with market veggies.
- Curry-scented mushrooms: my sous chef Maresa is obsessed with this dish, she’s been waiting for it to come on the menu for months. Beautiful mushrooms + a whisper of light curry powder + a hint of garlic + a shot of lemon juice + a bit of cilantro for color and lightness.
- Soup: Malaysian laksa soup with rice vermicelli: I feel like every week I say that the week’s soup is my favorite soup, but I just want to say that this is my most favorite soup ever. I first had laksa when I was following my sweetheart around on tour in Australia (the band he works with had an Australian tour, and I tagged along). I had just broken my foot in Melbourne when I tripped and fell down a staircase in a dark music venue, and simultaneously badly needed my wisdom teeth out, so I spent most of the trip in a wheelchair (lots of fun when you’re flying every day) searching every pharmacy on the continent for ever-stronger aspirin. I came across this magical Malaysian noodle soup in an airport in Sydney, and it was the best thing that had happened to me in weeks (except for penguin island, that was so amazing it made all my pains disappear while I was there). Unfortunately, our plane started boarding almost immediately after I got it (and since I was in a wheelchair I had to board first), so I gulped the soup down and have been trying to recreate the flavor ever since. It’s a weird combination of garlic, ginger, peanuts, coconut, dill, noodles, scallions, and tofu, and trust me, you’ll like it. Even if you’re not in a wheelchair in Australia with an incredible toothache.
- Salad dressing: Olive tapenade and basil dressing: a combination of pesto and tapenade–how could that ever be wrong?
I’ve got two open spots for this week, so just email me if you’d like to order!
I’ve got a little barter offer for ya, please spread the word!
I’m looking to have my meal delivery service website redone—it’s time. I’m looking for someone who can work with an art director pal of mine (who doesn’t design websites, tragically) who has designed all my meal delivery service paper goods (fliers, stationery, menu sheet I send to my clients, ads, etc etc.) to make the site look more like my paper identity and also to somehow magically bring it closer to the Bonbons site. The idea is to form a, like, uh, kinda, cohesive Lagusta’s Luscious brand identity (It’s all very businessy and somehow makes me want to use the phrase “vertical integration.”).
So, if you have sterling references (cool sites you’ve made) and want to overhaul a site for chocolates, food, money, or a combination of the three (preferably with a very light emphasis on the last one, or, even better, an invisible emphasis), let’s talk! If you want to do a trade for chocolates, you can be anywhere in the US, but if you want to trade for chocolates + food or just food, the delivery area is NYC all the way north to Rosendale, NY.
Sound fun? If you’re interested, shoot me an email at email@example.com.
Tell your friends!
Micro fennel from Taliaferro Farms
Kind of messy, but do you not love my new cookin’ headband? Keeps my bangs away quite stylishly!
shiitake stems (saved from the compost pile in order to be used for stock) under a canopy of spinach fettuccine.
The finished dish: spinach fettuccine with puttanesca sauce, micro fennel, and broccoli.
Hairstyling and clothing choices are not really my first concerns on long cooking days, especially in my cold cold cold kitchen (well, until it gets hot hot hot around midday–hello layers!)
pretty pretty puttanescas.
My sweetheart hung around a lot this week, snapping photos, making bad food puns, and stealing samples right and left off everyone’s cutting boards, so this is an exceptionally photogenic week for that reason. SO photogenic that I’m breaking it into two posts! Here’s the first one, with hilarious snaps of us Lagusta’s Luscious gals (and by that I mean: hardcore feminists) making the fakin’ bacon:
Once in a great while, I get log-grown shiitakes from my friend Aaron Di Orio, whose beautiful handbuilt house is literally two minutes from the kitchen. My regular 'shrooms, from Wiltbank Farms in Saugerties, are super lovely and organic and wonderful, but they are grown indoors, and there is something so special about true outdoorsy log-grown shiitakes. What a pleasure.
Aren't they fairy-tale perfect? Don't you want to make a little mushroom umbrella-home out of one and play house under it? (Maybe that's just me.)
Sous chef Stephanie!
The crew. Me giving Jacob a funny face. Maresa in mid-sentence. Stephanie in the dark stove corner because I'm mean and hate the way the light looks in that corner and try to get everyone not to turn it on.
In which Stephanie prepares to hack into a Blue Hubbard squash (grown by our friend Jessica from Veritas Farms) that weighs more than she does (she is standing on a scale so we can weigh the squash for the recipe).
Squash guts, soon to be pumpkin seed snacks when roasted with cinnamon and sugar!
Soon-to-be beet salad with walnut sauce
Beet salad with celery root and walnut sauce. Such a refreshing Eastern European salad, it always ushers in fall for me. It's from a recipe in "The World Of Jewish Cooking" by Gil Marks--a truly special cookbook. Check it out!
Seitan with jerk sauce, red quinoa, smoked red onions, greens, and pickled peppers!
Pickled peppadew peppers! Not quite a peck, but almost.
coconut mashed yams with thyme
carrots for the miso-glazed peas and carrots side, ready to be sauteed and tossed with their gingery miso-tahini sauce.
Squash pie with black kale and sage
Here we go!
Slow-roasted tomatoes with baby bok choy and grilled marinated artichokes.
Ahhh, beautiful bok choy from Taliaferro Farms.
Macaroni casserole with creamy cashew béchamel--oh my gosh this was amazing. I can say that without bragging, because sous chef Maresa made it. OK, ok, it was my recipe. So good!
Bubbly casserole, hot from the oven!
The finished casseroles, with their colorful tomato topping (the container on the lower right is minus tomatoes for our tomato-hatin' client).
These are potato cracklings. They are one of those life-transformative foods that, if you’re lucky, come into your repertoire now and then.
last week of ripe tomatoes! Sob!!