Monday, June 18, 2012

Cherry Chocolate Pistachio Scones

Saturday evening, I stopped by the Whole Foods on my way home from work and grabbed a little bit of this, a little bit of that. You know how you do when you're foolish enough to walk into Whole Foods without a list. Now, Monday morning -- the first morning of all three kids home from school and camp (plus it's raining, so no pool), I'm hit with "What's for breakfast?" Only nobody's in the mood for the typical school-day menu (read: cereal, cinnamon toast or fruit & yogurt). After all, it is after 9 am, and we are still in our PJ's! No, this is definitely not a cereal morning. Instead, something special, preferably made from the ingredients that are already out the counter, will have to suffice. Scones are certainly simple, however I think the fact that these have chocolate and cherries and pistachios in them may have set a dangerous precedent for summer breakfast fare. Oh well... At least I've got plenty of helpers!

3 c. all purpose flour
3 TB granulated sugar
2 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt

10 TB cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1 c. cold buttermilk

3/4 c. fresh, sweet cherries, chopped away from the pits
1/4 c. roasted, unsalted pistachios, roughly chopped
1/4 c. chopped dark chocolate (I used 70%)

1 egg white
1 TB water
1 tsp vanilla extract

Sunday, June 17, 2012


My favorite planter, outside the kitchen window...
and it's tenant. A wren?
(Plus, 3 or 4 more on the way.)

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Peachy Raw-Kale Salad

I'm beginning to think there are three culinary-types in this world: 

1.) Those who see another kale recipe and are genuinely delighted to try it. They "love" kale! (I'm totally jealous, btw.)

2.) Those of us who buy kale every other week or so because we know it's good for us. We don't not like it...

3.) "What's kale?"

I found this recipe last week, and was intrigued... Another way to use that kale in the fridge, and perhaps I'll even LOVE it.

Watch the video on the Food Network site -- Aarti says the kale will start to smell like bananas while you massage it (yes, massage it). And it's true! Weird, huh? This pampering serves to break down the fibers & cellulose in the kale, so you can actually enjoy it raw.

I changed up the original recipe quite a bit. Aside from the fact that I cannot leave well enough alone, I can't dice a mango to save my life. I don't know why. Maybe because I did not grow up eating them. Joshua manages the mango consumption in this house. I actually did have one on hand from last week's Green Grocer box, but I think it was too ripe to dice. I tried -- I really did -- to do that cool slice-it-in-the-skin-and-turn-it-inside-out thing, but it pretty much turned to mush. I put in in a bowl to save for my oldest daughter, who will be delighted, but it was obviously not meant for my version of Aarti's Massaged Kale Salad.

Now, peaches I can handle. And when I think peaches, I think pecans. Is that just the Texan in me? Instead of mango, I peeled and diced two small, still firm but slightly soft, white peaches, and nixed the pepitas (pumpkin seeds) in favor of chopped and pan-toasted pecans. After I dressed the salad and tossed it together, it was still missing something... so I added black beans. And red pepper flakes. (TEXAN!)

I am especially happy with this recipe because it involves very little cooking (just a quick pan-toast on the pecans) and the prep is far from arduous. Perfect summertime/swim-team-practice-every-night-at-5 fare. Whether or not you opt for the added spice is up to you, but I really think you ought to give this kale recipe a try. No matter which culinary type you are!