Happy Fourth of July! Looks like summer has finally arrived, and with a vengeance. It is HOT, you guys.
I love summer, but getting through these days usually involves a little suffering. Yesterday I went outside for a half-hour trip to the farmer’s market, and spent the rest of the morning with sweat pooled in my hair and dripping slowly down my temples. I went over to Kate’s place for a visit, and her two dogs were huffing and puffing and panting like I’ve never seen them do before. It was mighty tempting to flop down on the floor and pant right along with them.
So what’s a girl to do, when the sky is unfathomable blue but the sun is scorching?
Make granita, obviously.
Okay, I’ve tried to find some unifying theme for this post. I’ve been typing and then deleting cute, smart-alecky intros for the past twenty minutes. But you know what? Here’s the upshot:
I made kimchi fried rice. And it’s freaking delicious.
How to add a much-needed fancy flourish to the end of a stressful week:
It seems I’ve turned my search for potato chip alternatives into a multi-part series. So let’s call this the Salty Crunch Saga, Part 2.
Once again, we start with leftovers. I had a few handfuls of grated Parmesan left over from making pesto, and not a whole lotta idea how to put it to use. So it just sat in the fridge, for a week, slowly taking on the texture and general appearance of shredded Styrofoam. Finally I pulled the bowl out and resolved to, y’know, do something with it.
I remembered, one time, long ago, some Food Network chef on some Food Network show had mounded grated Parm on a baking sheet and turned it into crackers. Hmmm, I said. I wonder, I said. So I tried it. The result was amazing, crisp and lacy and delicate–and it turns out the Italians have been in on this secret for eons.
Guys, I’ve run out of steam today. It’s a Monday. I didn’t sleep enough last night, I had a nasty encounter at work with a Blue Screen of Death, and Netflix has decided it doesn’t like my roommate’s Wii anymore. First World problems. Grump grump grump.
And, oh, one other thing. Considering that my last post was all mad-sciencey and eco-friendly and fabulously delicious (I’m still snacking on kimchi straight out of the jar), I’ve been really afraid to follow it up with a letdown. So what did I do this weekend? I went to the store, bought some ingredients that I thought looked good, came home…and made a sauce I’ve already blogged about. Whoop de freaking doo.
But before you click the little red X in the corner and make me and all my Monday problems disappear from your life, check out the real reason I decided to do a redux of a recipe that hadn’t quite worked the first time.
Potato chips. Potaaaaaaaaato chips. Potato. Chips. I bet you’re craving them right now.
As far as I’m concerned, the salted deep-fried potato slice is the best evidence we have that evil forces exist in this world. Only a truly diabolical being could have invented something so ludicrously addictive. And they’ve hooked me. I’m a goner. When I’m plunked on the couch, with something inane on the teevee, all I want is a salty crunch traveling in a constant stream from lap to mouth.
But then come the consequences. The raving, gnawing salt-and-starch craving, roaring for more and more and more. Then the crash, the descending gray fog, the heavy eyelids, the sudden and overwhelming need to sink my bloated carcass into the couch cushions and sleep for an eternity. And, eventually, the circumference of my lower half, pushing wider and wider against the waistband of my jeans.
Clearly, something better is in order–something salty, crunchy, compulsion-forming, that won’t send my poor overworked pancreas into screaming fits. And, once again, it’s Mark Bittman to the rescue.