What I’m Reading Today

Sorry for the sporadic posting.  Summer has collided with a crazy busy schedule.  Lots of fun food stuff happening too.  Last night I took a fantastic class at 4505 Meats.  If you can’t make it to Ryan Farr’s kitchen, find him at the farmers’ market and take home some sausage.  Amazing stuff!  Also spent a Saturday at Soul Food Farm learning all about how acid effects cooking with Samin Nosrat.  A bright sunny day, we enjoyed an incredible lunch amidst the happy chickens at Soul Food.  Samin is a pro and Alexis and Eric were perfect hosts. When it comes to food, there is always more to learn.  If you haven’t taken a cooking class lately, go!

 
Featured in today’s LA Times is one of the paper’s most popular recipes, Lemon Blueberry Buckle.  When berries are in season, you see recipes everywhere for cobblers, crisps, crumbles, and buckles.  Each one is it’s own variation on the fruit/crust theme.  A buckle leans more towards cake than pie but its usually topped with a crumble-like topping, and should be bursting with fresh fruit.  Blueberries should be excellent right now but any other berries or stone fruits will do.  This simple recipe is definitely a keeper for your next summer dinner al fresco.
When you’re planning that al fresco summer party, it’s hard not to turn to the ever popular burger.  Nothing makes me happier than showing up at a BBQ to find juicy grilled burgers as the main course.  They need to be cooked well, moist with some char but not completely blackened.  A good way to ensure your burgers don’t dry out is to add some ground pork to the mixture.  This recipe for Japanese Burgers with Wasabi Ketchup, from today’s NY Times, takes it a step further by using half beef and half pork.  You’ll also see some minced onion mixed in with the meat.  I love doing this because the onion is not only sweet but it releases lots of moisture as it cooks, again helping keep that burger nice and juicy.  And the kick of wasabi in the ketchup?  ‘Nuf said…yum.
Well, we’ve got dessert and your burgers covered.  Now a salad to complete the menu.  How about Chilled Shrimp with Cabbage and Peanuts, from today’s Washington Post?  Succulent rock shrimp add some substance to this light and crunchy salad with an Asian twist.  You could easily make the dressing, wash your greens, and cook your shrimp hours ahead of time. Makes throwing this together a snap, and pretty darn gorgeous to boot.
Happy Reading and Happy Cooking! 
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