Things that are good

I’ve been trying to write for a while. I’ll be honest. I’ve started and scratched out an embarassing number of entries. Some emotions or experiences are tricky to put into words. A long weekend spent in Amherstburg drinking fabulous wine and margaritas out of mason jars, eating great food and laughing with my family. Reading a wonderful book in bed with a cup of fresh coffee beside me, the sun rising. A Tuesday off work to putz around the city. A short work week. Steel cut oats with frozen sour cherries and shredded, unsweetened coconut. Going out with co-workers. Believing in the good in people.

What have you been up to lately? Dear readers, I’ve missed you.

I haven’t been cooking much lately (gasp.) Pasta with an egg and homemade lemon artichoke pesto, quick red lentil soups and a crustless quiche with Gruyère and cremini mushrooms. I've been loving meals that come together easily but that are still big on flavour; subtle hints of anything need not apply.

At the same time, some of these things -- notably the quiche -- have been a bit heavier than I'm accustomed to. Unintentionally, I gravitate more toward vegetable-laden dishes full of pulses and fresh ingredients where animal products appear secondary instead of taking a starring role. Every once in a while I cook up something a little indulgent. It's great, but I'm happy to be back to lighter fare.

These meals have been both satisfying and nourishing, and I'm glad for it.

A red lentil vindaloo with potatoes and green beans, served on brown rice.

An enormous chopped green salad with French lentils. Have I told you how much I love French lentils? Well, a lot. I would happily sit and eat an entire bowl of them, tossed with a red wine vinaigrette and garnished with a bit of goat cheese and possibly a hardboiled egg.

And an amazing lemon tart. Umm...a different kind of satisfying and nourishing, really. I don’t have pictures because it was devoured too quickly over the long weekend. This makes me sad, but then again, I tend to think it was a bit of a clever move on my part. It’s just an excuse to bake another one, no?

Lemon Tart of My Dreams
(Barely) adapted from Elana’s Pantry and Laura Calder

Yields about 8 slices

1.5 C almond meal
1/4 tsp fine grain sea salt
1/4 tsp baking soda
1 tbsp sugar

1/4 C vegetable or neutral tasting oil
1 tsp real vanilla extract

2 whole eggs
4 egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar*
2/3 cup sour cream (low-fat is fine)
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice

To make the crust, combine the first four ingredients (dry ingredients.) Whisk to thoroughly combine. Make a well and slowly add the vanilla and the oil. Continue  to whisk until absorbed. Pre-heat the oven to 325F. Grease a 9.5" ovensafe pie plate and add the almond "batter", smoothing with your hands if necessary to even it out. Bake for 15-20 minutes until slightly browned.

To make the filling, blend the eggs, yolks and sugar together until emulsified. Slowly whisk in sour cream and lemon juice; it will yield quite a thin filling. Once the crust is finished cooking, fill with the lemon mixture and bake at 325F for 30-35 minutes until set. Refrigerate and cool for at least two hours. Serve chilled.

*Despite the amount of sugar, this recipe yields quite a tart pie. If you prefer a sweeter lemon tart, I would up the sugar to a full cup or even 1.25 cups.


Post a Comment

Blog Template by Delicious Design Studio