Monday, September 22, 2008

Old Favorite, New Favorite

It's officially Tomato Time! Our tomato plants are busting out. I just let the volunteers that popped up in the vegetable bed prosper... so we ended up with mostly cherry tomatoes. We have "yellow jelly bean" "red jelly bean" "sungold" and "yellow pear." Plus one nice full-size red tomato which is making very tasty tomatoes! This is probably one of my favorite meals of All Time. I use the Viccolo Organic Cornmeal Pizza Crust. Pour on 1 tsp good olive oil. Press 1 garlic clove. Smear the oil and garlic all over. Sprinkle copious amounts of fresh basil all over the crust. Layer with tomatoes. Cook at 425 until the crust is golden (25 minutes?).

I am not pretending it's low fat or bursting at the seams with nutrients. But it is sooooo good. I could eat it every single night, if common sense (and finances) were not an issue.

And a NEW favorite! My parents came over for dinner the other night, and I made two great dishes from "Healthy Hedonist." I made the "Asian Tofu Salad with Watercress" - which we loved the 1st time I made it. I also made this exceptionally delicious soup : "Kabocha Squash Soup with Gingery Adzuki Beans." This is officially now one of my favorite soups ever. Thick, hearty, complex, sweet and salty. The recipe calls for a traditional Japanese dashi broth, which made my whole house smell like a yummy Japanese restaurant. I'm not always a huge Japanese food fan, but this is just amazing. The squash is roasted, and gives the soup a thick, creamy, sweet flavor. This is brilliantly complimented with the naturally sweet adzuki beans, which are then seriously hopped up with garlic, ginger, and umeboshi plum vinegar. Then the soup is given a few drops of hot pepper sesame oil, so it's got a pleasant heat punch too - this soup is perfect for fall and winter, and would be great if you had a cold or needed to feel healthy and nutured.

Special note: I get so excited when I get to use a new ingredient. This was my first time using umeboshi plum vinegar - it's so beautiful! Just like the umeboshi plums, it's got an alluring pink hue... mmmm.

15 comments:

  1. Hooray for fresh, homegrown tomatoes!! Your dishes always look BEYOND phenomenal.

    Haha, no worries - I DEFINITELY get excited when I get to use a new ingredient, as well!! :0)

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  2. Damn. I've been looking for kabocha squash since I first tried it last summer. I was in another town and it came from someone's garden. But I cannot find it in a store to save my life! It was darn good.

    Also, your tomato pie looks amazing. And it sounds pretty healthy to me.

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  3. Yay for umeboshi plum vinegar! It's one of my favorite ingredients, too. I love it on tomatoes or in salad dressings. Of course, that might just be because of the sodium content...but it's so good!

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  4. That tart is absolutely gorgeous! I saw one like it in the NY Times, but it had like, 5 eggs in it or something. This is a major improvement.

    And plum vinegar, eh? Sounds promising...

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  5. That soup sounds amazing, perfect to kick off autumn!

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  6. If only I'd seen this yesterday, I would have known just what to do with my kabocha squash! Soup - of course!! Why didn't that ever cross my mind???

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  7. OMG, that tomato cornmeal pie sounds SO good! It's downright gorgeous.

    Mmm, soup!

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  8. Gorgeous tomato tart! Isn't it so satisfying to eat what you've grown? Good job!

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  9. That tomato tart is so pretty!

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  10. Those Viccolo cornmeal crusts are so incredibly delicious! Oh I could eat those all the time, but - bummer - they don't sell them around here. :'-(

    I will console myself with your pictures! That soup looks and sounds amazing, too.

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  11. I LOVE tomato pie and yours is so pretty!

    I have umeboshi vinegar but I'm sure I've only used it once. I do love the color.

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  12. The tomato pie is the most beutiful pie I've ever seen. So colourful!

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  13. I really wish I had the time and space for a garden, so I could experience tomato overload too! Until then, I will drool over your pics :) Also, that soup looks and sounds delicious. I've not experimented much with Japanese cooking, but it's something I am curious about.

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  14. Gorgeous picture!! I absolutely love tomatoes, and homegrown are the best. Send some my way, will you? ;)

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  15. ooh these dishes look super yummy! that soup sounds really really good :D

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