We Weren’t Singing the Blues

memphis vacation photo
There’s nothing quite like neon signs lighting up the night!

So, we headed off again, this time to Memphis and the Mississippi delta. This is our second trip to the area and we really love it. The people are super friendly, there’s good food everywhere, the cities and towns are perfect for walking, and the architecture is outstanding. We got a couple of ideas for new recipes, too; when we get to them, possibly as early as Monday, we’ll point out where they came from.

Dill Buttermilk Biscuits

Dill buttermilk biscuits
Dill buttermilk biscuits
Dill is a great addition to biscuits.

Ah, who doesn’t love biscuits? We surely do, but we don’t make them all that often. Why? After all, they’re a quick bread; that means we can have the biscuits ready to put into the oven by the time the oven has finished preheating. After that, it’s just 15 minutes until you have fresh, light, flaky biscuits. This week, with the huge bunch of dill we have on hand, we’ll show you how to make the best herb-biscuits around. We’ll use dill, but any tender herb can be used in its place.

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Lime Polenta with Roasted Cauliflower and Mushroom Ragu

lime polenta with roasted cauliflower and mushroom ragu
lime polenta with roasted cauliflower and mushroom ragu
A trendy one-bowl meal!

On Saturday when we were walking around the neighborhood, we were debating dinner, trying to figure out exactly what we’d have that night. Thinking about the vegetables we had left from our CSA pickup (about a pound of cauliflower and a huge amount of dill), it looked as if we’d do something with the last of the cauliflower. Perhaps soup? Perhaps a small gratin? Or maybe something with the dill? We just didn’t know. After about a mile and a half of walking, we thought about making polenta. We love polenta. Then we realized that we had a few limes in the fridge, and the idea of lime polenta was born.

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Lemon-Dill Roasted Cauliflower with Gemelli

lemon-dill roasted cauliflower and gemelli
lemon-dill roasted cauliflower and gemelli
Toss with pasta, add a bit of cheese, and done!

If you read these posts day-by-day, it probably seems as if there are stretches where the recipes are quite similar. It’s true. It’s the way we eat. We pick up our produce from the CSA (Community Supported Agriculture), generally 7-8 items, all fresh, and we have to use it before next week’s pickup. That means, if we get a lot of dill (this week), we have a lot of recipes based on dill (such as today’s).

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Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette

salad with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette
salad with Lemon-Dill Vinaigrette
A light and refreshing dressing.

We have a bunch of dill to use. Literally, a bunch from our last CSA share, and, for us, it’s difficult to use it all before it goes bad. The last time we picked up a bunch in our shares, we had to dry about half of it before it went bad. We don’t mind drying the dill; it’s a good way to have some later in the year, but we also like to eat our fresh food while it’s fresh. This week we came up with a couple of ways to use the fresh dill; a simple vinaigrette is the first.

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Wow! What a Cauliflower!

weekly produce share
Instead of a mound of greens, this week we got a mound of white cauliflower.

At least we didn’t get all greens this week during our pickup, but we did get a couple of cool weather crops. In particular, look at the size of that head of cauliflower. We had to cut it into four pieces just to get it into bags for the refrigerator. It was huge, weighing in at nearly five pounds! Now, you might think that such a huge cauliflower would be tough or woody, but we had some and it’s surprisingly sweet. Yes, we know you don’t think of cauliflower as being sweet, but fresh cauliflower is.

This week’s share:

  • Cauliflower (1 head)
  • Broccoli (1 head)
  • Oranges (3)
  • Red potatoes (5)
  • Dill (1 bunch)
  • Salad mix (1 bag)
  • Tendergreens (1 bunch) — an heirloom mustard green

Roasted Beet Dips

roasted beet adn walnut dip
roasted beet adn walnut dip
Your swirling will look better, we’re sure.

This dip is really two dips in one. When we decided to make Roasted Beet and Walnut Dip from The Moosewood Restaurant Table, by the Moosewood Collective, we thought it might be nice to make part of the dip from red beets, and part from yellow beets, and swirl the two dips together. But, we didn’t want to ruin the color of the yellow dip by adding walnuts and mint, so we made two versions. And, being the nice folk that we are, we’ll tell you how to make both.

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