Monday, September 14, 2009

Farmers Market 2009 - Summer into Fall

Winter squash, bosc pears, late peaches and early apples were offered at our Saturday farmers market this weekend. A sure sign of summer's long slide into fall.

Click on over to Mimi's kitchen to see what's in her CSA box.

Copyright © 2005-2009, Christine Cooks. All rights reserved

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Sautéed Shredded Zucchini with Parmesan and Fresh Basil

My mother, when in a hurry to get dinner on the table, would shred her garden-fresh zucchini and sauté it in a saucepan for a quick vegetable dish. I used to love eating this as a child; butter, salt and pepper its only adornments.

Now, I gussy it up in ways that my mother did not, stirring in freshly grated parmesan reggiano, fresh basil chiffonade (see Cooks Notes below), and using several different types of zucchini.

Simona reminded me last night that I still hadn't posted it.

Thank you for the nudge. Here you go, girlfriend.

Sautéed Shredded Zucchini with Grated Parmesan and Fresh Basil Chiffonade
Original recipe by Skip Hills, adaptations by Christine
4-6 fresh zucchini*, preferrably local and organic, ends trimmed, grated
1 teaspoon each olive oil and unsalted butter for the pan
1/2 cup freshly grated parmesan reggiano (use more or less, to your liking)
4 large fresh basil leaves, cut chiffonade**
kosher salt and freshly ground black peppercorns to taste.

Using this side of a box grater, grate the parmesan until you have 1/2 cup (I probably used more, but then I'm of the more is better generation). Set aside.

Using the same side of the box grater, grate all the zucchini. Set aside.
Heat a large skillet over a medium high flame until hot. Add the olive oil and butter and allow them to melt. Adjust the heat to keep the oil from smoking if necessary.
Add the zucchini to the skillet, spreading it out to the edges, and allow it to sauté, undisturbed, for about 5 minutes. Adjust the heat so the bottom layer doesn't burn.
When the bottom layer has softened and become slightly browned in places, begin tossing the zucchini and turning it over in the pan, allowing it to cook thoroughly and become slightly golden throughout. It should be softly cooked, not tender crisp, and retain its fresh color.
Remove the pan from the heat and immediately toss with the grated parmesan and basil chiffonade.
Season to taste with salt and freshly ground pepper and you're done.

Dig in while it's hot.

Cooks Notes:
* I used both green and straight golden zucchini for this dish. I've also used round, light green zucchs and young pattypan squash.

** To make basil chiffonade, stack 4 or more large fresh basil leaves atop one another, all pointing in the same direction, and beginning at one long edge, roll them up snugly, cigar like. Holding the roll on a cutting board and using a sharp knife, cut the basil roll crosswise into thin strips. With your fingers, pick up each rolled strip and gently loosen it as the now thin basil strips drop from your fingers. Use immediately.

Copyright © 2005-2009, Christine Cooks. All rights reserved

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Farmers Market Fruits; Kitchen Counter Still Life with Sunrise

Sunday morning after a Saturday farmers market; early morning sunlight just beginning to come through the kitchen window. How could I not take a photo?

Coming soon . . . A few recipes from over the summer that I somehow didn't find the time to post.

Now I'm going to make the time.

Copyright © 2005-2009, Christine Cooks. All rights reserved