Thursday, October 7, 2010
How could one not go gaga over the simple purity of Caprese Salad ingredients at the peak of in-season goodness...all wrapped up in puff pastry??? Then again, I like pretty much anything wrapped in puff pastry.
After seeing a similar idea my darlin' niece made & posted on Facebook,
I sent my husband out to get some tomatoes from our local farm stand & then over to my sister's to raid her herb garden.
I defrosted a sheet of frozen puff pastry dough (Pepperidge Farm) & spread it with a mixture I concocted with a few tablespoons of mayonnaise (I only use regular Hellmans), mixed with some grated Asiago cheese, a little garlic powder & a few dashes of dried thyme, kosher salt & pepper. I put a very thin layer of this on the center of the dough, leaving an unadorned border roughly 3" wide. After slicing the tomatoes for the torte, I pushed out all the seeds & juicy center parts & blot them with paper towels to keep the tart from being too watery. I then layered in the sliced tomatoes, fresh mozzarella and basil over the mayo mixture. Pull the plain edges of dough up over the filling & pinch slightly together to form a nice free-form tart.
Bake it at 400 degrees until the tart is golden..somewhere around 20 minutes, but watch carefully near the end so as not to over-brown it.
Allow it to cool slightly before digging in or it'll run all over the place.
Drizzle with some of your favorite Extra Virgin Olive Oil & sprinkle with a little more crunchy kosher salt to serve...and prepare to go gagaaaa.
I must add that I'd like you to take note of the very lovely serving utensil used here. It's one that my husband Phil upcycled using a piece of fallen branch from our yard...to replace a drab & ordinary handle. We sell similar items in our new Etsy shop. Check it out at OhMyGoodNest.etsy.com!
We're listening to Sonya Kitchell today. Do ya know her? This 21 year old singer-songwriter from Northampton, Mass. is a favorite of mine. Her gutsy breathy soulful vocals sound like someone much older than her years. She's hard to pin down to one specific genre ~ Blues, Rock, Folk, Jazz, Soul...she runs the gamut. Check out her album "This Storm". I'm lovin' the track "Who Knows After All".
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
I hadn't been to a real country fair in years & felt as if I'd taken a step back in time. If nothing else, a country fair is a real feast for the senses. The aroma of fried dough and bushels of apples, combined with the scents of farm animals & trampled hay brought back memories in a rush, for this was the fair I grew up going to as a kid.
Every where I turned was a treat for the eyes. The people watching alone was worth the visit. Yes, there were plenty of campy trinkets and over-priced foods. But the special place these scenes hold in my memory raise them up to a place that bring smiles and satisfaction to a beautiful end of summer day.
The song for today is Keb Mo's cover of "Family Affair" from his album "Big Wide Grin".
Sunday, August 22, 2010
A rainy August Sunday is as good a day as any to birth a blog. I have no regrets over not being outside enjoying the dwindling summer days. I can sit here tapping at the keys or sit and string multitudes of beads to knit into yet another bracelet; all the while relishing the luscious aroma of a HUGE pot of homemade spaghetti sauce and meatballs bubbling away on the stove. I can't take credit today for the sauce pot. That goes to a husband who loves to cook as much as I do. How great is that? Life's simple pleasures...working with the hands to make something beautiful, music, food and family all in one place on a rainy afternoon. These are the things that provide contentment & satisfaction.
Music is a fundamental component of a day such as this. Mark Knopfler's "The Ragpicker's Dream" is playing as I type (check out the song "The Place Where We Used To Live").