Greenmarket Grub: Potatoes
I hate to hear people trash-talk potatoes. I once had a friend sniff, “I don’t consider potatoes to even be a vegetable” and I rolled my eyes and flipped her off (which, okay, I could do because I was actually online chatting with her at the time). Potatoes, in my mind, are pretty much an absolute good and I feel rather protective towards them.
Remember a couple of years ago when food prices shot up and then suddenly staple grains were all crazy expensive, and there were protests and riots in parts of Africa and Asia over food prices? Well, that’s what globally-traded food commodities can get you.
Rice, wheat, and maize are the top three sources of carbohydrates in the world and they’re all subject to price fluctuations, but potatoes don’t keep well enough to ship very far, so they’re not globally traded—which is great news if you live in a developing country and you’re now royally screwed because rice/wheat/maize is now too expensive for you. Potatoes can be grown by almost anyone, anywhere, in any country. So long as you have dirt and people to water said dirt, you’ll get potatoes and you’ll get fed.
But here in the rest of the world (I hear you say), we don’t have that problem.
Photo Friday X 2
Spider Eggs and Snot Sticks: hello there Halloween (and all the delightfully disgusting foods you entail).
Still choosing a book for next Thursday’s final book giveaway — details to follow!
Grape pie, revisited.
Ages back, I tried my hand at making a grape pie.
It was… good but really not great and I purposely didn’t include a recipe for it at the time, because I wasn’t that thrilled with the way it turned out. It was kind of runny and overly sweet.
I have since revamped the ingredients and method I tried originally and turned it into this post I wrote for my neighborhood paper, the Manhattan Times.
I’m pretty pleased with the results.
Better-than-Before Grape Pie
– 4-5 cups (about 2 pounds) of grapes (ideally Concords, but any variety will do)
– 3/4 cup sugar
– 1/4 cup instant tapioca pearls
– 2 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces
– Pastry for a 9-inch pie (top and bottom crusts)
Wash the grapes and remove the skins. (Just pinch opposite the stem, and the pulp will pop right out.) Set the skins aside for now. Put the pulp into a heavy pan, bring it to a boil, and let it boil until the pulp starts to separate from the seeds. Remove the seeds by putting the mixture through a fine mesh strainer. Pour the hot pulp over the skins and let the mixture sit for 6 hours or overnight.
Stir in the sugar and tapioca, set aside for about 20 minutes, then pour the mixture into the bottom pie crust and dot with butter. Put on the top crust.
Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350 degrees and cook 20 minutes more until the crust is browned and the juice begins to bubble up. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Reminder: tomorrow at noon, I pick a winner for my first book giveaway!
To enter to win, just become a fan of gezellig-girl.com on Facebook.
Photo Friday: at last, salsa
I made salsa and it did totally did not suck, unlike last time I tried to make salsa.
I also made a mess.
I was looking through some old posts about groceries and grocery shopping, and I unearthed this post about what I consider to be household staples — from February of 2007.
I was really surprised to see some of the things that were a constant staple in our pantry.
I can’t even remember the last time I bought Stella D’Oro breakfast treats, although when I wrote that list, my kid was in the middle of a long phase of loving them. And over the past couple years, the price of evaporated milk (which I used to put in my coffee) has steadily crept up until it got the point where I just gave it up and switched to whole milk instead.
So, I’ve revised my list of kitchen staples. It’s pretty long, so click the jump tag to see it all.
Photo Friday: Wash Week Continues
To give you an idea of the epic mountain of laundry I’ve been doing, I’ve filled (and emptied!) that laundry sack four times this week… and I’d estimate I have another three more to do.
Why am I so obsessed with this saga of laundering? Because, I will confide to you, my reader — I almost never finish anything. I have more 6″ scarves and cut-out pattern pieces than I would care to admit, because I suck at follow-through.
Not this time, though. So help me, I will wash every goddamn item of laundry in this house.
And once that’s done, doing the laundry once a week or so will be CAKE.