Sunday, August 5, 2007

Summertime

It's been a time for visitors: a cousin from Chicago, a friend from Portland.........a barbecue at a friend's house, and an invitation to get some appetizers at a new wine bar. My kitchen has been quiet. Which is why I've gone missing from my blog. When I looked up and noticed it was summer, I suddenly found the time for that book, ("The Namesake"), and for a walk in the park, and yes, actually taking time to go to the beach to do nothing.

But on my way to the farmer's market this morning, I found these morels at Whole Foods:
Sadly, I've actually never eaten morels before. They've been one of those mythical ingredients, belonging - in my mind, at least - to restaurants with linen tablecloths and crystal wine glasses. But there they were at Whole Foods - outrageously expensive and completely irresistible. So what was I to do?

As I wandered through the produce section, the morels became the seed of an idea, which then required asparagus and shrimp. Check back to see what these fragments became.

What have you been doing this summer, besides cooking? What have you been reading?

16 comments:

Chris said...

I have never seen those before...Hmmm...can't wait to hear more!

This summer - well, there was 2 weeks in Eastern Europe, which was stupendous! Other than that - I went back to work in July and teachers come back tomorrow- so the fun's over until spring. :) Reading? I have been trying to read up on the John Maxwell books I bought in June. 360 degree Leader is what I am reading currently....see if I can gain some leaderhip savvy.

Lydia said...

Isn't everyone reading Harry Potter???

Toni said...

Chris - 2 weeks in eastern Europe is definitely stupendous! Did you come back with food ideas?

Lydia - I guess I'm the only one on earth who hasn't read Harry Potter, though I've seen one or two of the films.

Susan said...

Toni, move over. I've not read one word of Potter nor tasted a morel, either. My summer's been taking over with painting my kitchen and road trips to country farm stands (and a few books: "Time's Arrow"/Amis; "Writing"/Duras; and "Perspective Made Easy," for art techniques). Can't wait to read what you have in mind for your morels.

JennDZ - The Leftover Queen said...

Perfect! The best thing you could have done, you did - just bought them and figured out what to do with them! I am often smelling new things in the grocery store so I can figure out what they might go with!

Patricia Scarpin said...

It's winter here, Toni, and once I get to my couch and under the blankets it's hard to move! :)

I've been watching a lot of TV. :)

ann said...

Are you enjoying Gogol? Such a great book! I finished Harry, read the trashiest and worst book ever (it's called Harem, if you see it, run the other way) and am currently reading The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins while preparing for a week in Northern California. I've managed to cook quite a bit, but wish I've been spending more time at the beach. It hit me this weekend that I haven't gone swimming once this summer.
Have fun with the morels. They RULE.

Toni said...

Susan - Road trips to country farm stands spells SUMMER! I've never read any of the books you mention - let us know which is your favorite.

Jenn - You've just validated one of my favorite cooking tools: the nose! I've always let my nose be one of my main guides in the kitchen. Thanks for confirming this!

Patricia - I completely get this one. Now, if Joao would come up with a few fabulous meals to bring to you on the couch......;-)

Ann - Are you enjoying Moonstone? I understand the bit about looking up and noticing you haven't done your favorite summer thing. Yesterday I went with a couple of friends to a lake and we rented a rowboat. Suddenly, we all realized that summer was slipping away too quickly. Get to the beach, girl!!!

Rachael said...

I made some risotto balls the other day with farro and morels and stuffed them with brie...then fried them. It was over the top perfection. So glad you got to try them too!

As for this cousin..anyone I know? Any reason I should be pouting I wasn't invited down during the visit? (Cheeky grin)

As for my reading, I just finished The Scarlet Pimpernel...corny, but good. Last week I read The House of the Seven Gables, and the week before that Persuasion. I could go on, but you know me...I read, and read and read, and the theme this summer is "catching up on the classics..." (With a brief foray into H. Potter, and a wonderful afternoon spent reading The Zen of Fish...totally recommended!)

All my love,
NR

Toni said...

Rachael - No, you shouldn't be pouting. You should be saying prayers of gratitude! (It wasn't easy.)

Your risotto dish sounds wonderful!! But then again, anything you cook is usually over the top fab.

As for your reading - you're way ahead of me. I've yet to catch up on those classics. The Zen of Fish? Sounds fascinating...

Cynthia said...

I've never had morels before.

This summer... well I just returned from my homeland, Guyana where I spent 10 wonderful days with the family, friends and taking lots of food pics :)

What I'm reading, completed the Harry Potter book. Please don't get me started on it (lol) I'm in the process of completing Anthony Bourdain's Kitchen Confidential and then I have some reading to do in preparation for classes that begin at the end of this month.

toni said...

Cynthia - Home to Guyana? Oh please, take me with you the next time!!

Chris said...

Lots of food ideas, Toni! I was actually surprised I kinda got tired of eating out. But - I liked the food in Krakow best...Yum! And, I ate desserts every day...I NEVER do that! When in room....

toni said...

Chris - Krakow? Wow! Would love to see you do a post on your version of something you ate there!

Nora B. said...

Hi Toni, I wouldn't have recognise morels even if I saw thenm at the market. I am curious to see what your dish will look like.

It's good that you've been enjoying your summer. You already know that we are still in the midst of cold weather in Sydney, but spring is almost here (yay!!!). In summer, I usually spend more time outdoors, whether it is doing more outdoor sports, reading on the grass in the backyard or cooking and entertaining al fresco. The caress of the warmth from the sun on my face is one of the happiest feelings for me.

Susan G said...

Reading 'The Ghost Map' by Steven Johnson -- story of the cholera epidemic in 1849. Quite an eye opener about how cities and health standards have changed, and the problem solving to understand cause. Thanks, I've been wanting to tell more people about this!