Sunday, June 29, 2014

Farmers' Market Beef and Peaches... Means Burgers and Summertime Peach Cobbler!

After yesterday's stint as a sous chef at the W-S Farmers' Market, I couldn't
wait to get over to the Greensboro Farmers' Market for more goodness!
And, boy did we find it!
You could smell tomatoes...
And, peaches from the parking lot!
You know what they say... When peaches beckon, cobblers soon follow!
So I asked for a bucket of peaches capable of becoming cobbler today!
Which is exactly what I got!
Let's make the easiest peach cobbler, ever... Shall we?
I used all eighteen of these beautiful, ripe peaches!
Peel, then cut peach flesh away from the pit, slicing as necessary...
In a large bowl, add 1/4 cup each of the best granulated and brown sugars,
which for me means Dixie Crystals, 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, 1/4
teaspoon ground nutmeg and 2 and 1/4 teaspoons of corn starch to peaches...
Then add 2 teaspoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice and stir...
If only we could bottle this smell!
Add the zest of one lemon and stir to incorporate again!
Butter a 2-quart pie dish. Don't even think of reaching
for the non-stick cooking spray... You know you deserve better!
Using a slotted spoon or other strainer...
Add peach mixture to pie plate...
Then bake in a preheated, 425 degree oven for ten-12 minutes!
While peaches bake, to another large bowl, add the following:
One cup AP flour, 1/4 cup brown sugar, 1/4 cup granulated
sugar, 2 teaspoons baking powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt...
Then, cut 6 tablespoons of really cold butter into chunks...
And, cut butter into dry ingredients with a fork or pastry blender...
Until butter looks like little peas...
Slowly stir in 1/4 cup boiling water and mix...
Just until dough comes together!
Remove peaches from the oven...
I know you'll be tempted to dig in, but wait... It gets even better!
Then, finish by dropping dough by spoonfuls over peaches!
In a small bowl, mix up 2-3 tablespoons
granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon...
And, sprinkle it over the dough topping!
Bake cobbler at 425 degrees for 20-30
minutes or just until crust is golden brown...
While my cobbler baked, I busied myself organizing the top shelf of my pantry!
And, prepared the beef I picked up at the Farmers' Market for dinner burgers!
I also harvested two cucumbers from our garden for my delicious cucumber salad!
By the time the burgers and cucumbers were prepped,
my cobbler was golden brown and smelling ah-mazing!
I was so happy with the way this cobbler turned out...
That I served it immediately!
Before dinner!
My resident taste-tester said it's the best peach cobbler he's ever had!
Well, that is since the last summer I made it for him!
Now, I could serve my burgers with my Oma's potato salad or my
mom's amazing noodle salad; however, since I have all this great
corn on the cob from the Farmers' Market and more cobbler to serve
for dessert, I'm making a light and refreshing cucumber salad instead!
Again, just like my cobbler, my cucumber
salad is super easy to throw together!
Remove seeds from two large cucumbers and slice. In a
medium bowl, add 3 tablespoons diced red onion to cucumber
slices and 1 clove fresh garlic, minced. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons
olive oil and a splash or two of any good white balsamic vinegar...
I love this herby German salad mix; however, if you cannot
find it at your local market, adding a packet of Italian dressing
mix or minced fresh dill, parsley and thyme will work just as well!
I boiled my corn on the cob for 8-10 minutes, wrapped each ear
in a foil sheet with olive oil, butter, sea salt and fresh cracked
black pepper and then, put them on the grill for 10-15 minutes...
Then, I added chopped (seeded) tomato to my cucumber salad to finish
it... Covered with plastic wrap to let the flavors get acquainted, while I...
Made my burgers!
Served poolside for another tasty summertime Sunday dinner!
I hope you have a spectacular week!

Friday, June 27, 2014

Le Creuset Chicken Pot Roast!

As I biked this morning thinking about how to top the pot roast I
made last weekend, I decided that only a whole chicken would do!
So as soon I I got home I got to work picking my herbs from
the garden! I know I say this about all the seasons but I do truly
love this time of year for all the wonderful things in our garden!
As you can see, the bees are busy helping our cucumbers come along!
And those Mortgage Lifter tomatoes are coming along just fine too!
Looks like our strategy of growing more than our
friendly raccoon can eat is working out nicely!
Thankfully, she's never been interested in my peppers!
Can't you just smell the sauce?
I sure can!
A quick stop at my thyme truck and we're off to
the kitchen to create my Le Creuset chicken pot roast!
This recipe is unbelievably delicious and spectacularly simple!
All you need is one 4-5 pound whole chicken, a few carrots, a handful
of mushrooms, a large yellow onion, 4-5 celery stalks, 2 cups white wine
or vegetable stock, 2 lemons and eight-ten cloves of garlic, crushed
Oh! And, don't forget the thyme,
cracked black pepper, sea salt and parsley!
Salt and pepper your chicken and dot with your crushed garlic
Stuff the cavity with one of the lemons, cut in half, seeded. Half
and squeeze the other lemon over the chicken after it has been placed
into the pot - But don't throw it away, let it bake in with the chicken!
Place chicken into your Le Creuset Dutch Oven. I'm using one of
my 7-quart ovens, which I usually use for chili - Then, surround it
with your vegetables and add your white wine or vegetable stock!
Looks like I'm being watched!
Such a busy-body!
Hello there... May I help you?
Whatcha cooking, Mom?
Squirrel stew, if you don't stay away from my bird feeders, mister!
Now, cover and slip your chicken pot roast into a
350 degree, preheated oven for three hours or until...
The meat falls...
Away from the bone!
Tender chicken, savory garlic, thyme
and lemon... Does it get any better than this?
I think not!
So... What are you serving for dinner tonight?