heirloom tomato tart

Heirloom tomatoes really DO taste better than their genetically-modified counterparts.

To make the tart: Heat oven to 400. Roll out puff pastry dough to 12"x12", and fold the edges in to make a border. Brush with a very light coating of sour cream, and chill. Then top with a layer of thin tomato slices (about 1/8" thick). Season with salt & pepper. Bake for 20-30 minutes (sprinkle feta on about halfway through), until the dough is done and golden brown. When it's done, top with basil leaves.


taste of summer

Spicy cucumber salad (cucumber with thinly-sliced onion and fresh parsley, splash of rice vinegar and red pepper flakes:
Thanks to my coworker Bob for bringing in cucumbers from his garden to share with the office!

Sweet corn with butter, chili powder, salt & squeeze of lime 
(photo dedicated to Kelly):
New Jersey peaches over French vanilla ice cream, with candied ginger and basil (credit to Bob's garden for the basil):


fun with hurricane rations

Since hurricane Irene has passed without my losing electricity (and because I watched a bunch of episodes of "Chopped" while I was cooped up indoors for 2 days), I decided tonight to challenge myself to come up with a dinner featuring something from my now unnecessary non-perishable hurricane food supply: things like nuts/trail mix, bread, bananas... and beef jerky.

I made queso blanco arepas topped with beef jerky & grape tomatoes:

The arepas: combine 3/4 c masa harina (fine corn flour), 3/4 c water, 1/8 tsp coarse salt, and crumbled queso blanco. Let sit for 5-10 min. Form dough into 4 small "pancakes". Heat oil on medium (dough should sizzle when you put it in the pan). Cook about 5 minutes/side.

The topping: heat a splash of oil in a pan, add 1 clove minced garlic. Before it begins to brown, add sliced beef jerky, to just warm through. Then add sliced grape tomatoes, chopped fresh parsley, and some black pepper and cook for a minute or so. Top arepas with the mixture and squeeze a piece of lime on top.

With the exception of the cheese (which could be left out), none of the ingredients in this meal needs refrigeration. Not a bad meal if you do find yourself without power.

It was quite tasty. The jerky was a bit tough, but actually not too bad.
I would definitely make this dish again, using chorizo or skirt steak instead of the jerky.