Monday, April 22, 2013

I have neglected the blog this year!  I know that.  I have some long-term projects coming up -

- a master post on coffee, putting everything I know in one place;

- peanut miso;

- black-eyed pea miso (okay, probably several kinds of miso);

- ramp nukazuke;

- ramp jack cheese, my first homemade hard cheese;

- but of course that does nothing to update the blog in the short-term.

Let me catch us up.

Lent: I ended Lent early, albeit bit by bit. Not to be one of those internet people who makes a big deal out of going to the gym, but ... I joined the gym.  During Lent.  Now, I know there are vegetarians who have no trouble working out on a regular basis, of course, but I'm not a vegetarian - I'm a meat-eater who was avoiding meat.  My protein cravings after the gym were just too great, and no amount of fish was doing the trick.

Easter: So Easter wasn't the "welcome back to me, meat!" celebration it usually is, but it was still pretty great. We made pulled ham muffulettas. The "pulled ham" was a pork roast that I cured for a week before smoking it until it fell apart.  We piled that on muffuletta bread with olive salad, blanched chopped greens, sharp provolone, salami, and mortadella:


More recently, Caitlin and I spent a week at the lake to celebrate her birthday. It's still cold up there - we watched the ice melt on the lake over the first couple days - and everything is pretty empty.

Weirs Beach

But it also meant there weren't crowds anywhere. We thought about going back to Sandwich Creamery, but it was muddy in enough places that I didn't trust the car on those winding dirt hills. We did make a pretty amazing find at the supermarket - locally foraged blue oyster mushrooms.

Blue oyster mushrooms

These were delicious, and kept their texture during cooking - I browned some chicken thighs with fennel seed, added a handful of cloves of garlic, the mushrooms, and most of a bottle of white wine, and popped it in the oven until the wine had reduced down to a glaze.

More mushroom stuff coming later this week, plus ramps and nettles!  It's sorta kinda spring!

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