Hey y'all. What's cookin'? No really, what are you cooking? If you're anything like me, you cook a lot of food. Some of it is simply that - food, fuel, simple fare that warms the belly and satiates hunger. I'm looking at you, toast and eggs. Other times, I make something that is memorable and that gets talked about later. This week when trying to decide what to cook, my partner Regan remembered some spinach flautas I made a long time ago. Those were memorable. What's been a memorable meal of yours as of late? Submit your answers to this question here. I'll share the results later this spring!
And now, your recipe roundup:
Still unsure what to do with fennel? Did you see our whole blog post on the topic? Give it a read if you're looking to understand and befriend fennel a bit more. The fennel use-cases are many!
I met Robin Beltran from the Black Vegan Company years ago through the farmers' market world. I've referred back time and time again to Robin's flauta recipe and often use it as a base. The flautas I make tonight are going to have spinach + chicken, because I've got leftover shredded chicken in the fridge that needs using.
Spinach Saag Paneer "is the luscious Indian comfort food you need," says this Saveur recipe. I couldn't agree more. Like creamed spinach, saag paneer hits all the comfort notes.
Snag a cucumber the next time you're at the store, and make a riff on this salad with your Vrdnt pea shoots, scallions, and daikon radishes. I can't think of a more springy dish to welcome the warm weather. On day 2 of this salad, add some crumbled cheese and serve it over lettuce.
Pea shoots quickly sauteed with garlic is a very common side dish on a Chinese table. I still remember the first time I had a big plate of garlicky pea shoots. While visiting my friend Haley in San Francisco, we made sure to have several meals in Chinatown. I ordered bok choy, but the waiter retired moments later to say they were out. She suggested pea shoots instead, and I happily obliged. There is no better way to eat pea shoots than this, in my opinion. Spring on a plate.
I recently came across this recipe on the Rancho Gordo website. The recipe itself is one version of a million of ways that you could use leftover chickpeas that include ample scallion and herbs. The reason I chose to share this recipe, though, is to tell you about Rancho Gordo in case you've never heard of it. Rancho Gordo and their heirloom bean subscription has a cult following, to be sure. The company sources beautiful and quality beans from all over and ships them to your house. Dried beans are a wonderful complement to any CSA box, and when you combine the two, there are endless possibilities for culinary magic.
I love this recipe for many reasons. For one, it has the name Edna Lewis attached to it. And for two, the recipe is just scallions. I love green onions like I love my sister, and this recipe let's scallions simply be the beautiful harbinger of spring that they are.
A CSA Member emailed us this recipe and we thought we'd pass along the recommendation. Even though it's warming up outside, you'll see me continue to post lots of soup recipes. To me, soup is a year-round affair!
I recently watched this Epicurious youtube video about how to make restaurant-quality french fries at home... which got me thinking.. why not make daikon fries?
I'm often looking for new-to-me ways to approach something as foundational as chicken soup. Sancocho, a Puerto Rican bowl, is distinct for its plantains and broken spaghetti. Diakon is definitely not listed in this recipe, but like any good root vegetable stew or soup, it's easy to imagine daikon fitting in just fine.
Today is Lundi Gras, and tomorrow is Mardi Gras. Any year that I'm unable to go home to Louisiana for the holiday, I at least make sure I'm eating well. Food has the power to stave off the homesickness and general feelings of fomo. Honestly, many years my ode to Mardi Gras is picking up Popeyes or drinking a screwdriver... two things that inevitably happen when I'm celebrating in Louisiana. This year I don't have orange juice and am far away from a Popeyes, so will instead just share some recipes that remind me of home and carnival season, in general. And to make it Vrdnt relevant, just serve a side salad with your delicious Vrdnt lettuce. 😜
Vietnamese and Cajun Crawfish (less of recipe video, more of a story.)
King Crab Colossal Shrim Deshelled Seafood Boil Drenched in Alfredo (This video is pretty heavy on the ASMR, but the recipe is pretty close to something I'd eat over Mardi Gras.)
Till next time!
(some recent mardi gras magic.)