Sweet Potato and Asparagus with Lemon

March 27, 2012 § Leave a comment

J: A couple of weeks ago over my spring “break,” I had a conference to attend out of town, so Erik went home to visit his parents.  While I was enjoying sunny Puerto Rico, he got the tail end of winter and was able to cook some new delicious recipes, which he told me all about and promised that we would make together soon.  This is the first one we made, and even for 70+ degree weather, it was delightful.  Honestly it is sort of what I had been hoping for when we made this a few months ago (but that dish ended up being a bit on the too-spicy end for me), and I have a sneaking suspicion that because it is easy, fast, healthy, and crazy delicious, it will become a staple around here.  Seriously, with a recipe this unassuming — potatoes and asparagus! who knew?! — you will be amazed at how flavorful and filling this is, especially with a light sprinkling of cheese.

E: Don’t mind the salmon in the photo. This post is all about the sweet potato concoction on the left.

served next to some grilled salmon

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Sole with Criminis, Leeks, and Asparagus

January 11, 2012 § 1 Comment

E: For Christmas, we received Tom Colicchio’s book Think Like A Chef from my cousin Kristina and her husband Patrick—thank you both very much! We decided to make some recipes from the book over the holidays as a way to test it out. There’s a lot of great stuff in the book, and it looks like a great guide to a lot of things. Colicchio certainly likes his butter, so this isn’t the sort of cookbook you work out of every day. Instead I think it is best used for occasional special events. However, there are a good number of recipes that, with small modifications, could make for reasonable everyday fare.

looks a little messy but tastes good

This dish, however, is not one of them. This is a version of one his recipes that uses morels, ramps, and asparagus. However as neither morels nor ramps were available, we made some substitutions. The real killer in this dish is the beurre fondue—it is excellent, giving a wonderful buttery flavor without being greasy. Beurre fondue is basically butter whisked into some water, and it provides a buttery, creamy sauce that isn’t too oily or overpowering. It doesn’t feel too fatty on the palette, but considering that the recipe as written uses 2 sticks of butter (we made do with 1), this isn’t something you’d want to eat daily. « Read the rest of this entry »

Asparagus, Broccoli, and Carrot Risotto

April 27, 2011 § Leave a comment

J:  Okay, so I make a lot of risotto.  It’s become one of my “causes” to try and get more people to appreciate how versatile basic risotto can be, and how really simple it is to make once you’ve gotten the hang of it.  Pretty much, if I’m at a dead loss for what to make for dinner and I have some arborio rice hanging out in my kitchen, you can bet a risotto is in the works.

Most risottos that I make are, admittedly, not hugely full of nutrients.  In fact, I think risotto in general is seen as being pretty unhealthy for you, because a lot of people make it with a ton of cheese, maybe butter, sometimes wine, and the other added ingredients can sometimes take a back seat to the creaminess of the rice itself, which really shouldn’t ever happen.  Arborio rice is a fantastic blank canvas, and you can (and should!) get creative with the kinds of things you throw in.  Some really awesome flavor and texture combinations can come out of it.

awesome textures, flavors, and colors!

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