Sorry for how late this one is. I’ve already pontificated on how summer is Not For Me. So the dread of writing up this collection (which is an assignment I GAVE MYSELF) kept me kicking the can down the road. That said, I dug deep for stuff I can really only do this time of year and came up with what I think is a pretty nice, varied set of goodies. It also put into perspective just how hoardy I’ve gotten about recipes. I had 5 different ratatouilles in my e-mails, y’all.
1 large or 2 small eggplants, cut into 1/2 in/1.25 cm dice
1 t salt
4 T olive oil
2 medium onions, cut into 1/2 in/1.25 cm dice
4-6 garlic cloves, crushed and roughly chopped
2-3 basil sprigs, tied with twine
1 3-finger pinch red pepper flakes
1 T dry white wine
2 yellow bell peppers, cut into 1/2 in/1.25 cm dice
3 medium summer squash, cut into 1/2 in/1.25 cm dice
3 ripe Roma or San Marzano tomatoes, cut into 1/2 in/1.25 cm dice
Salt to taste
Fresh torn basil
Olive oil for serving (optional)
Balsamico crema for serving (optional)
Medium heat-safe bowl
Large soup pot or Dutch oven
Toss eggplant cubes with a teaspoon or so of salt and set in colander to drain while you chop the rest of the vegetables, about 20 minutes. Heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil in soup pot over medium heat. Pat eggplant with paper towels to remove moisture and salt, then cook, stirring frequently, until golden. Remove to heat-safe bowl and set aside.
Add 2 more T oil to pot, then add onions and cook until translucent, about 7 minutes. Add garlic, basil and red pepper flakes and cook for 2-3 minutes. If fond starts building up on bottom of pot, deglaze with wine. Stir in peppers and cook for a few minutes, until just starting to get tender. Add squash, cook for a few minutes, then add tomatoes.
Cook for 10 minutes, until tomatoes really start to break down, then stir eggplant back in. Cook for another 10-15 minutes or until all vegetables are tender. Remove basil, pressing to extract juices, and salt to taste. Serve with fresh basil, olive oil and Balsamico crema.
2 T vegetable oil
4 ears fresh corn, shucked and kernels removed
salt to taste
2 T mayonnaise
2 oz/50 g cotija or feta cheese
3 green onions, finely sliced
fresh cilantro leaves, chopped (we like a lot)
1 jalapeño pepper, finely diced
1 medium clove garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
pinch mild chili powder
pinch ground cumin
salt to taste
Large deep bowl
How to remove kernels from a corn cob: take your large deep bowl and set your small bowl in it, inverted. Using the small bowl as a pedestal, balance the cob on its end and slice the kernels off downward with a sharp knife. The kernels will fall off into the large bowl. Congratulations on not having a kitchen littered with corn kernels!
Heat skillet over medium high and add oil. Add corn kernels carefully (they’ll pop and splatter a bit), stir until well coated with oil and distributed, then cook undisturbed for a couple of minutes. When kernels have browned and blistered a bit, stir well and salt, then cook for another 5-10 minutes. When kernels are well browned, remove to a large bowl and allow to cool. Once cool, stir in the rest of the ingredients and refrigerate overnight (or as along as you can keep your hands off of it).
Homemade Hamburger/Hot Dog Buns
If you’re a baker, this is a fun (and delicious) project.
We’ve been experimenting with grilled vegetables this summer and it’s really been fun. These make a nice base for a grilled vegetable sandwich.
We make sausage and that is a very labor and equipment intensive process. But if you want a real challenge, I highly suggest this recipe. Poultry sausage is not a thing here, so it’s a really unique dish to offer. We’ll be using it as a jumping off point for other chicken sausages, as that thigh-breast-skin combo really works to make for a flavorful result.
This was surprisingly forgiving and will support any fruit you like. If you have some egg whites hanging around, give it a shot!
My mom makes a ‘German’ potato salad. It’s not really the same as Kartoffelsalat here, but it is really, really good.