Beet Balls For The Big Game

I brought Beet Balls to a Super Bowl party last night, and my Facebook friends are asking for the recipe. Since I love, love, love beets, and have worked this recipe through many iterations, I feel confident that it will work for most home cooks.

This is based on Mark Bittman‘s recipe for “Hearty Winter Vegetable Burger” from his book How To Cook Everything Vegetarian. If you like this, he has many more goodies in the book. Continue reading

What ARE You? A Granola?

Today’s Principle: Least Effort

The principle of Least Effort maintains that as long as one is engaging in doing what one truly loves, the rewards will come with little or the least amount of effort. Sometimes one will wonder why they’ve deserved to be so lucky.

I recently discovered the joyous ease of making granola. I’ve been working with Mark Bittman’s basic recipe from How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I’m not a strict recipe adherent, and so have made several variations on his formula until settling on my own version, which yields a loose (non-clumpy) blend of nutty, tart and sweet flavors.

Granola is something I ate often when I could, but I found it quite expensive, even in bulk at the local food co-op. So even though the combination of ingredients themselves is not cheap, I find the homemade variety much more satisfying to eat.  I keep my granola in a reused plastic tub with a tight-fitting lid. Every time I open it, the aroma of toasted oats, nuts and berries reminds me of the joys of living in Vermont. During a snow storm like this, I often need reminding.

[photo by Daniel W. Barlow]

The recipe for this week’s batch goes something like this:

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Recipe: Fish and Cicada Jaew

This is a bulk recipe made for a large gathering, or about a year’s worth.

EQUIPMENT:

Blender

Mortar and pestle (6 quart capacity?)

PREPARATION:

Broil or roast on a grill the following:

6 large jalapeños

6 shallots

3 whole garlic bulbs

According to my mother, you could wait until after a heavy rain and pick the cicadas off the bushes, or wherever you find them. But the best ones are found in Fort Meyers, where she goes to buy them freshly bagged (and still live) from harvesters who probably sell them at a local farmer’s market.  They’re sold in snack-sized Ziplock bags (fits about a dozen) for $5/bag, a much better value than the $5 frozen 3-packs found in most Asian markets. Sure they come from Thailand, but how many people are three bugs going to feed?

[Toasted cicadas]

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