Thursday, January 10, 2008

Summer (Psych!)

I can't seem to kick-start my winter cooking. I dream of braises and breads and cookies, but I'm still eating pretty much cocktail party buffet-style: a little charcuterie, some cheeses, toasted nuts.
I admit I've dabbled in the seasonal requisites: the roast beef for Christmas and the Hoppin' John for New Year's Day.
Yesterday I stirred up a batch of my signature slow-cooked scrambled eggs (they come out creamy and unlumpy), served with sauteed chanterelles and a side of roasted potatoes.
The other day we defrosted a bag of homemade (homegrown) tomato sauce for spaghetti.
And like that.
But I just can't get my stew thing on, probably because I'm less and less interested in meat.
Ho, well. We're going to a meat-centric restaurant tomorrow for Cranky's birthday (can you say early Social Security benefits?). Cranky loves a little steak now and then. I may just order soup and duck-fat french fries, hold the cow.
But what's really on my mind?


Anonymous said...

Well, happy early birthday to Mr. C!

I think it is quite fine that you're tomatocentric.


ChrisB said...

Early Happy Birthday to Cranky from us in Bristol, I'm raising my glass to you even though it's only camomile tea! x

cookiecrumb said...

Aw, you two sweeties. I'll tell the C-man you're sending good wishes.
AND... his birthday is TODAY! What was his gift?
Dinnerware. (He picked it out himself.)

Rev. Biggles said...

Happy Birthday Cranky !!! (pass him a Schlitz for me).

And then, you're making me cry. Not interested in meat? Is this why I haven't seen you around? No longer have the meat toof?

Making store bought corned beef tonight!


cookiecrumb said...

Bigs: Schlitz on to Cranky (where you gettin' them?). Thankee.
I'll be making a shepherd's pie soon (cottage pie, actually) with some of the leftover roast beef from Christmas. I'm still in the game. I just need to find an urge to braise.

Lannae said...

I hear ya - summer! Mmmm fresh summer veggies on the grill. Luckily for us here in Nashville, we still have some stragglers at the local farmer's market with winter veggies, lettuce, milk, meat, fish, honey and home made soaps. How long can this bounty last? I am also with Cranky, a little steak is needed before you die.

kudzu said...

Happy Birthday to Cranky and may his steak be perfect.

I did a super chuck roast in the oven for hours and hours and I do recommend that long cooking for these short days. On the other hand I've been reading and writing about soups all week. I know where you're going and the soups are fabulous and the top chef/owner has a great book of them (all too fancy for my everyday kitchen but glorious to contemplate).

Have a great night out.

peter said...

Do you want to change houses for a couple of weeks? You'll get your braise on in a hurry out here (lamb shanks tonight!) As for me, I'm still pretending it's summer- or at least fall- by nursing hardy greens under plastic. It's really quite pathetic.

dancingmorganmouse said...

Try slow cooked lamb shanks - with tomato, lentils and red wine - that'll perk up your meat interest.
You've got my mouth watering with all your slow-cooked eggies with 'srooms and potatoes, and duck-fat chips, drooool.

dancingmorganmouse said...

and, of course, the happiest of birthdays to your beloved.

San Francisco Photos said...

You're photos are great! They make the food look really YUMMY!

cook eat FRET said...

that salad looks absolutely perfectly delicious. interesting, fresh salads are one of my favorite things to ever eat. lately i'm hitting the roasted walnut oil and lightly dressing my salads with just that and some garlic and guerande salt. it is wonderful.

so yeah - hold the cow... but i do love me some lamb...

Anna Haight said...

Happy Birthday to Cranky! I'm sure you've noticed my veggie tooth these days too. Although I haven't posted about it, I've been making some simmered dishes and experimenting with seitan recipes. Not meat, but still simmers a long time before ready. I'm ready for summer too, and perhaps its this weather that has me longing.

Rev. Biggles said...

Find the urge baby!

I went to my local bev mo and placed an order for them, I got 3 cases. Oh yes.


cookiecrumb said...

Lannae: It's all drizzle here. To eat fresh means chard and parsnips. I'd rather eat the cocktail party food.

Kudzu: Of course you know where we're going. I left three critical clues, eh? I've paged longingly through GM's book, wishing I wanted to own it... but I agree with you.
I'm fascinated by your long-roasted chuck.
Can't wait to read your soup stuff.

Peter: You're not pretending, you're coping. It's good for you.
BTW, I do love lamb shanks, and I think the whole point of this post is that I'm disappointed with myself for not doing lamb shanks yet...

Morgan: Lamb shanks it is! In a few days, mebbe, after I get over the duck fat.

SFP: How delightfully nice of you to say so. Thanks!

ceF: Just so you know, that photo of the tomato salad was taken last summer. Everything in the bowl was grown in our yard. Which is why I'm pining for summer.
Anyway, again with the lamb! OK!

Anna: I'll be interested in hearing about your slow-cooked seitan. (Yes, I've noticed your veggie tendencies. Best wishes feeling healthy.)

Biggles: Canned corn beef? I'm thinking... no.

Sam said...

i can't work out where you are going, but I hope Cranky un-cranks enough to enjoy his special day. Big kisses from me xxx

cookiecrumb said...

Hey, Sam: It's Boca, in Novato. And Cranky is amazingly happy (he usually hates his birthday). Thanks for the love, and wow, you won the homegrown white peppercorns!!

Cyndi said...

Happy Birthday to Cranky. Show us the dinnerware! And let us know what you actually ordered - duck fat fries?

Susan from Food Blogga said...

ANd the cherry tomatoes at the farmers' market have been tasting like summer too. So, no wonder it's hard to get excited about stews. Happy b-day, Cranky!

Catherine said...

Happy birthday Cranky!

I'm with you - make is salad, cheese. And I found a lovely green heirloom tomato today (it cost me $4!)

Love the photograph!

Stacie said...

purdy toms!! I hear ya, wishing for summer here at my house too. Used the last of my summer tomato sauce... but still have loads of frozen peaches, almost like summer...

SnowBug said...

off-topic but am apparently unable to decipher even the simplest of blogs today.

I'm trying to find an email address so I can ask what corned beef recipe you use. I noticed you mentioned it on meathenge.

Thanks. Sorry again for off-topic. And happy birthday to that guy I don't know. :)

cookiecrumb said...

Cyndi: Go to Heath Ceramics (in Sausalito, they have a website) and you'll see the gorgeous, heavy, ultra-tasteful -- i.e. not goofy -- dinnerware. We bought "seconds" from their retail shop. A few dings and nicks, huge savings.
And yes, I ordered the fries! Yummza. Soup was good too. Cranky appreciates the wishes.

Susan: You still have tomatoes in the market because you are in San Diego. I left my Sungold plant in the garden; it has a few flowers on it but I'm doubtful it will fruit. Summer's coming!

Catherine: I am SO not buying fresh tomatoes. But I admire your selflessness. $4!!!

Stacie: Already used up your frozen toms??? Eeek!! BUT. I didn't know you can freeze peaches. Mmm.

SnowBug: I've sent you an email with the source of the recipe. (Ruhlman's Charcuterie)
That guy you don't know says howdy to you!

Kevin said...

Duck fat.{sigh} I've got to make more confit.