Saturday, October 11, 2008

*get your goat.

This weekend has been an exercise in the old-fashioned regroup. An attempt to get my regularly crooked head back into at least an approximation of straight. And that is no small task considering my deep, life-long contempt for exercise. But there is a remarkable amount of thinking one can do while cleaning out the cabinet under the kitchen sink. (A bottle of bleach imploded in there. Necessity is the mother of invention. I don't want you to think I've suddenly acquired any motivation or anything.) I also, thanks to the miracle of podcasts, now know how to trim the silverskin off flank steak. Should that spontaneously become necessary for a bachelorette vegetarian. Other things I've learned in the past 48 hours:

1. Peach-flavor Fresca still has grapefruit juice in it, making it the enemy of my medication.

2. If I like or want something, I probably can't have it (see number 1).

3. Self-pity, while comforting, gets old fast (see number 2).

4. If you are the parent of any mammal, you're probably going to have to get up close and personal with its excrement at some point.

5. A perfectly civilized conversation at 11 Bonita can unravel posthaste. Word to the wise: Avoid the phrase "I am an undecided voter."

6. Bleach will eat ANYTHING.

7. As long as I live, Taboo will always be some of the most fun ever. Hearing Friend's Husband say, "G-string" and Other Friend's Husband answer (immediately and correctly) "BRAZIL!" did much to make up for the stress of the past week.

8. Dogs can sleep an almost worrisome amount of time. This may be their cutest state. When awake, they like to chase leaves in the water. Also, backpacks are for winners.

9. No one can endlessly ruminate. When taking a break, it is best to have a basket of chips, some spicy salsa, and an awesome sister at the ready.

10. There is a good chance most doctors' offices are run by monkeys. K: "Yes, I need to make an appointment with Dr. S." Monkey: "All right, and have you seen him before?" K: "Have you? Because HE'S A LADY." OK so I only said that last part in my head.

But even with all that learnin' goin' on, I still had a promise to keep to L Sis. And that promise was somewhat warily titled Broiled Goat Cheese with Pumpkin Seed Sauce.

Ingreds: vegetable broth, tomatillos, parsley and cilantro, jalapeƱo, garlic, and goat cheese (locally made, but $16! Good thing I love these people). Also dry roasted pumpkin seeds. The recipe called for hulled pepitas, which you roast, but this was all the Western had. I think it came out great regardless, and their already roasted-and-salted status meant I got to cut out two steps—roasting the seeds and salting the sauce.

And aren't those tomatillos loverly? A few minutes in cold water and their sticky skins slipped right off.

Everything but the cheese went into the blender

and whirled together. The time it took to get to this silky texture?

Less than 10 seconds. Best. Blender. Ever. Also the best ever? These two things:

Individual pre-measured 1-cup broth containers (cute AND convenient)

and Ravida olive oil.

Not only is it delicious (seriously, I could drink it straight from the bottle), but it's also the most beautiful oil I've ever seen hit the pan. I don't know how pricey it is—quite, I suspect—but I sneak it furtively into dishes at 11 Bonita every chance I get.

When the oil is hot, the blended sauce goes on.

It simmers for about an hour, frequently (or infrequently, depending on the telling of gesticulatory stories) stirring and adding more broth every so often as it thickens. I ended up putting about another cup (pre-measured!) in when all was said and done.

Then the goat cheese has to soften in the oven, so I picked a dish from the china room (I know).

LOVE. I have a thing about birds that I can't quite explain. They make me smile. Oddly, real live birds do not have the same effect. The hot pumpkin sauce spills onto the hot cheese and is served with tortilla chips.

Shhhh, there's goodness under that bird's butt—don't tell.

Ack! Exposed!

This went over like gangbusters. I was slapping at hands to get some for myself. The only one who didn't go wild for it was JBSH, but I think that's because he was too busy trying to top me. Would he succeed, with his grilled shrimp and peppery arugula and oh-my-god-give-me-more spicy sauce and buttery buttery buttery grits?



What's Next? says:
at: 7:40 PM said...

Yumm ... I wants some of that next time!!

John-Bryan Hopkins says:
at: 8:40 AM said...

I loved the dip

The goat cheese and the sunflower seed were a great flavor

You did good girl!!

Juarez Family says:
at: 8:58 AM said...

Sunflower seeds? JB doesn't listen OR read!

The dip was to die for! Thanks for making it for me!

John-Bryan Hopkins says:
at: 10:15 AM said...

brain was a roasted's too early

I'm going back to bed!!!



my foodgawker gallery



I am a work in progress. I perpetually need a hair cut. I'm totally devoted to my remarkable nieces and nephew. I am an elementary home cook and a magazine worker bee. (Please criticize my syntax and spelling in the comments.) I think my dog is hilarious. I like chicken and spicy things. I have difficulty being a grown-up. Left to my own devices, I will eat enormous amounts of cheese snacks of all kinds.