This is a comment from ZOSIA: "I made the halloumi kebabs and the pistachio dukka - both delicious but I had a few issues. I grilled the kebabs outdoors and the tomatoes were cooked in about 4 minutes, before I had a chance to get a nice char on the cheese and potatoes. Next time, I'll use a slower cooking vegetable in their place. The dukka was a little too salty for me to use it as a dip with bread and oil - my own fault really since I added the salt all at once rather than in small amounts, tasting as I went - but it was fantastic as the only seasoning for some roasted veg."
Dera Zosia: I took the liberty of posting your comment here - hope that is all right.Thank you,Andrea
Of course it's all right :)
Sorry, Zosia, that should read "dear"...ah, those typos...I am glad you do not mind, I was running late with my Peas and Cukes this week.
New potato salad „tartare“ (page 79) - a true crowd-pleaser of a potato salad - this time I served it without the dill and with lots of farm-fresh eggs - the kids love, love it and so do I. Nice tanginess from the mustard and the cornichons and the capers in the dressing. NOTE: if you choose to use salt-packed capers, do not forget to rinse off the salt first. What a nice change to potato salad with that "other" dressing.
I'm looking forward to this one. I'm glad to hear it was a hit.
I made this one adding dry dill to the dressing and it was delicious!
This potato salad has become a staple at our house - sometimes I add dill, sometimes I do not and go for other herbs instead. It is simply delicious. A not-to-be-missed recipe. Trust me!
Tomato and olive couscous (page 231) - if you are planning to make that dish, make sure that you actually make it. Instead of the coarse couscous, I used medium-sized pearl barley here. Pearl barley is a common ingredient in these parts and available in small, medium and large - medium being perfect for salads and soups. So, if you cannot get your hands on couscous, you could use other grains here, lots of different herbs, tomatoes and olives. The leftovers are fabulous for school and office lunches - I will try to remember this recipe for my next picnic.
Macaroni peas (page 264) - so good and now it is also officially kid-approved. It works with fresh and frozen or just frozen peas and it makes a nice side dish as well as main course for the kids. Just be careful when putting half the cooked peas in a blender with a few tablespoons of their cooking water - close the lid/cover properly and do NOT as I did...a green kitchen is nice but not that way... If you want to amp up the flavor of this dish, I would recommend adding one or two finely sliced two shallots: when you melt the butter in a small pan over low heat; add the garlic and the shallots and cook gently for several minutes. Also, you are well advised to use a hard cheese with tons of flavor here: for dishes like this one I prefer a Pecorino Romano over the usual Parmigiano Reggiano - it has more of a bold flavor.Just a few personal thoughts on this fun and delicious dish.
Thanks for your notes Andrea. I signed up for this one but am concerned about the sweetness. Shallots and stronger cheese sound like good ideas. I have some Asiago that I think will work.
Zosia: sweet Spring peas are hard to beat though..."veggie sweet" I call this, in a good way. But you can also add less peas and more pasta, it will still work fine. Asiago cheese is a good choice - mild but flavorful. Thanks for your feed-back - did you make any other dish so far?Andrea
Tomatoes with herbs (page 121) - this seems to be the best time of the year (in these parts) to be making this dish. Tons of tomatoes and herbs available for this quick and fresh side salad - really not a recipe but rather a summery inspiration.
We had cool, rainy soup weather this week so I made the ribollita. This was a really great tasting soup and it smelled fantatstic while it was simmering. Vegetarian daughter came to the kitchen to investigate while it was cooking and said she hoped she could eat whatever it was because it smelled soooo good. And it tasted better the next day. I added a Parmesan rind tied in a piece of cheesecloth with the herbs but I don't know that it needed the extra flavour.
Ribollita is a hearty Tuscan soup and it is June after all but we still have those stormy days (like yesterday and today) when a soup recipe like this is just what we enjoy eating. Thanks for the encouragement with respect to this recipe - cannot wait to serve it to the kids. And I am looking forward to having another recipe for my vegetarian best friend on hand when she comes and visits again. Btw adding Parm rind is an absolutely wonderful trick - I always keep the rinds for my veg soup, it is a rather useful "leftover" to keep in the freezer/fridge. Love those comments & sharing notes!Andrea
I made the Beet Top Tart last night but since I had no beet tops I used spinach and WOW! This is a great tart!
Guyla - good to know as I am planning to use fresh spinach as well - no beet tops to be found around here, they always cut them off before the green grocers displays them for sale.