Tuesday, August 9, 2011

You Say Tomato, I Say Tomatillo (But We're Talking About Different Things)

It's nice to be inundated with tomatoes for a change. Tomatoes are something that it is impossible to run out of ideas for. Summer squash is more of a challenge in the quantities we get. Soon corn will fill our fridge, counter top, and freezer. We'll be handing out corn to everyone that visits, bringing it in to work to share with our fellow employees, and calling in all manner of neighborhood animals to feed it to. But that is a few weeks off at the moment.

Right now it's tomato time!

Tomato Salad with Ricotta, Cilantro, and Lime

I took some of the tomatoes from the farm, sliced them, and served them with a few dollops of ricotta, salt, cayenne, olive oil and a squeeze of lime juice.

Cornmeal Crusted Chicken Breast with Salsa Verde and Avocado

For the main course I used the remaining cornmeal mixture from last night and coated some skin on chicken breast before pan frying it and finishing it in the oven. I served this over a tomatillo salsa I'd made on Sunday with last week's tomatillos from the farm. For the salsa I simply cooked some garlic, onion, and serrano pepper in a little olive oil then tossed in the chopped tomatillo with some salt, pepper, and cumin. I filled the pot just under the tomatillos with water and boiled it before pureeing it and adding some roughly chopped cilantro.

I served the chicken over the salsa with a wedge of avocado.

Brooklyn Pilsner

I learned a valuable lesson in beer tonight. I paired this pilsner from Brooklyn Brewery with the dinner because, from all I care to understand about beer pairings, this was the best accompaniment to a dish like this. While this was a good pilsner I discovered something very important: I just don't like pilsner all that much.

I think it takes me ten or twelve beers of the same type to get familiarized with the variations of the style enough to make a decision. After a long run of pilsners I think that, like IPAs, they just aren't my favorite style. This is surprising because I've been under the impression that I actually liked pilsners for a very long time.

Who knew?

Mojito Popsicle

For dessert we enjoyed another of Jen's Popsicle creations. This time it was her mojito Popsicle. On the ranking of her Popsicles this summer it's somewhere below the Aperol grapefruit popsicle and above the peach ginger in the rankings. They go something like this:

  1. Aperol Grapefruit
  2. Rhubarb Limeaid
  3. Lime Mojito
  4. Peach Ginger

Jen is far from done. She has a tremendous amount of ingredients, a healthy number of Popsicle molds, and an undying love for Popsicles. Will anything unseat the Aperol grapefruit for top honors?

You'll have to stay tuned to find out.

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