Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Nothing Fancy

My farmers market finds from the weekend did not go to waste. I used my heirloom tomato, sourdough baguette, potatoes, scallions and strawberries for a simple Tuesday dinner. Nothing fancy. Just fresh and delicious. Yumazing, actually. Fresh and simple usually trump fancy, in my humble opinion.

It's admittedly a little cliche, but Nathan and I adored Cafe Lalo when we lived in NYC. I only say cliche because a.) they hock their own merchandise all over the place, and b.) on unabashed display in the front window are photos of scenes from late-90's-Meg Ryan/Tom Hanks-romantic-comedy, You've Got Mail, that took place at Cafe Lalo. You know... when she goes and sits alone with a rose and book waiting for her secret mailer guy to show? That place. With the twinkle lights and the windows and whatnot. You remember.

Annnnywho, my point is that no matter how much Lalo seems like a recipe for a tourist trap, - besides, we pretty much were tourists anyway, having only stayed a short while - we loved it for so many reasons.

Such as: introducing us to the simple-yet-genius combo of grilled sourdough + heirloom tomato + swiss cheese.

So, a quick trip to the store to grab a block of swiss solved my dinner puzzle yesterday, along with a few snipsnipsnips from my herb garden to sass up the potatoes. Staples like butter, salt and pepper were crucial for overall execution, and we had the strawberries for dessert.

To recreate the meal for yourself after a trip to the market, all you need are the ingredients mentioned above and a stovetop/broiler.

Recipe for Grilled Swiss & Tomato on Sourdough:

Slice a sourdough baguette to desired length and slice in half, cut side up. Lightly butter and place under a heated broiler for a few minutes, just until the edges crisp slightly. Remove and top with heirloom tomato slices, a small amount of salt and pepper, and then top with swiss cheese. Place back under the broiler until the cheese is nice and melty and the corners of the bread are golden. Easy peasy.

Recipe for Farmers Market/Herb Garden Potato Salad:

Get a pound or so of little new potatoes at the market and wash the dirt off. Boil for several minutes until a butter knife can slide through. Drain and set aside. Then heat a tbsp of butter in the same pan and add a handful of chopped scallion, the white and green parts. Saute until softened just a little, and then add the potatoes back to the pot. Add more butter if you'd like, and smash with a wooden spoon so the potatoes are about halved, not totally mashed. Stir to incorporate the scallion, then sprinkle chopped herbs of your choice. I used basil, parsley and chives, and it was pretty outstanding. Stir in salt and pepper to taste. I'm a butter freak so I like to maybe even add a wee bit more here. Serve warm. Don't forget the strawberries for dessert; this is their season to shine.


Anonymous said...

OOOO yummy yummy! On your potatoes, after you smash them drizzle on a little good olive oil next time. MMMmmmm. Yeah.

HH_Stl_Chi said...

This sounds delicious and easy ... and good for a single girl to cook for herself ;)