I know, it’s a knitting blog…and I’m hoping to have more knitting content next week. But I have been cooking a lot, so here’s some food pix.

I made some ratatouille and stretched it out over three meals and not until the last meal did it reach its full potential.

Meal #1:

This is from Vegetarian Suppers from Deborah Madison, with her accompanying semolina crepes. It was okay, but it was lacking something. (For those of your shopping along at home, this is our lovely everyday wedding china, One O One, by Eva Zeisel for Royal Stafford; Sasaki Asana flatware, designed by Vignelli Associates; and Riedel wine glasses. I am grateful for all of our wedding gifts, especially because I lived like a stereotypical bachelor before I got married and ate frozen lasagne over the sink with my one fork. Seriously. I only had one bowl. When Adam moved in, he brought two bowls. So we had three crappy bowls. But now I am truly grateful for being able to eat off nice plates and not my dollar store purchases. And we now have so many great kitchen tools! My most used gift, besides the plates and flatware, is, I think, the garlic press.)

Anyway, the next night I cooked it over rice, which Adam deemed a big improvement. And then finally, I had the idea to add beans. This finally elevated it to a truly tasty meal:


VOILA!! Here’s my recipe. I am including the brands not because I am paid (HA!) but because I think it might be useful.

(0.) Cook some dried black beans from scratch. They have much more texture and taste (and are significantly lower in sodium) than the canned ones. I put in a heaping teaspoon of Penzey’s Fox Point seasonings when it was cooking. This takes awhile, so budget out a few hours to get this part done.

(1.) THE RICE. I highly recommend using this short grain brown rice mix–it’s got some chew and a lot of flavor. It’s called Lundberg Jubilee. I bought it at the health food store and according to the package it is a mix of “Wehani®, Black Japonica™, short and medium grain red rice, short and long grain brown rice and sweet brown rice.” Okay, whatever. But it’s a crucial element of my recipe, in my opinion.

(2.) Put the rice (I used 3/4 cup for two people) and put double the amount of chicken broth into your rice cooker or pot. (So, here, I put in 1.5 cups of chicken broth. I use Imagine Organic, because that is what Cook’s Illustrated decided was the best after taste tests, and Chris Kimball is my lord and master. I would also try to use a lower-sodium brand here.) I also sprinkled Penzey’s Spices Old World Blend over the top and stirred it around before I started cooking. (We got the Penzey’s “Ethnic Milwaukee” set of spices from Adam’s Milwaukee cousins as a wedding gift and I have been using them with abandon.)

(3.) Cook the rice.

(4.) Form a mound: Put in a bunch of rice. Heap some warm beans on top. Put the reheated ratatouille on top. Ratatouille is tastier after a day or two in the fridge. As I said, this is from Vegetarian Suppers by Deborah Madison, but probably any recipe for ratatouille is fine. Fry an egg. Put it on top.

(5.) Eat.

Posted in cooking, Uncategorized at September 17th, 2010.

Shawl at MoMA

So I’ve been knitting on this shawl since, well, since before the blog went on its hiatus. I had big plans to finish it before my honeymoon, so I could prance around France with it, but nope, never finished it. Then I brought it ON my honeymoon, thinking I could knit all my memories into every stitch. Yeah. I actually became totally sucked into watching all these episodes of “The Good Wife” on the plane ride over (and back) and just enjoyed life on the TGV train rides, so I knit exactly zero stitches on my honeymoon, which is fine too. (Above, I am knitting on it in the Museum of Modern Art’s garden early this summer when we went to see Marina Abramovic. Also, someone next to us was using his iPad as a phone and holding up this GIANT pad next to his ear. I was laughing at him, but then he gave us a dollar that I dropped so then I felt bad for mocking him.)

I think there was a little bit of a life pun in that I started watching this after I got married, but actually I am really into the show. I think this show is really well directed–I totally recommend it even though no one seems to care when I recommend it in person. It’s not just me! Critics love it too!

Here’s my random long aside about “The Good Wife.” The premise obviously started with the Elliott Spitzer marriage; Julianna Margulies is “The Good Wife” (or Silda Spitzer) and Mr. Big, aka Chris Noth, is the Attorney General husband who had to step down because he slept with a prostitute. Anyway, it’s pretty successful in being two things at once. First, every episode is a mini-Law and Order, because Alicia Florrick (Juliana Margulies) had to go back to work as a junior lawyer after her husband went to jail, so every episode has a mini plot arc about the case she’s working on. She has a smart (but fierce, you know how it is) sidekick, who is the investigator at the law firm, and a rival in Logan Huntzberger. I do not know what this actor’s name in real life or on the show is, but he played Logan Huntzberger on Gilmore Girls (and Lyla’s obnoxious super-Christian boyfriend on Friday Night Lights), so Logan it is. Plus there’s the boss who happens to be an old flame, another boss who is Christine Baranski, who is kind of hilarious in everything, but plays the tough lady boss here. That’s the work story. Then there’s also a season-long arc, which is about her relationship with Chris Noth and her mother-in-law and her kids, who are always getting involved in trying to protect their dad from the Chicago machine, which is trying to take him down.

First of all, the acting is solid. You believe Chris Noth, since he’s basically playing the same person he always plays–slimy, but charming dude. More believable than the real-life Elliot Spitzer, actually. Julianna Margulies is compelling and all the side characters are good. Secondly, the directing is good–there are a lot of little touches that are nice–they do a lot of the cutting back and forth on scenes that was pioneered in The Graduate. I tried to explain this to Adam yesterday, but actually, I learned it all from this interview with Ron Howard in the Times, so just read that to get what I mean. But there are other things too–the photos that the Chicago machine sends to intimidate the family are riffs on the photos of Marion Barry smoking crack, back in the day, but with Chris Noth in the photos instead.

It’s not *groundbreaking* or the best tv you’ve ever seen or anything, but overall, it’s really very well done. And randomly produced by Ridley Scott. There’s my fall TV suggestion for you.

Posted in Shawls, Uncategorized at September 8th, 2010.

It’s like the start of a new school year. Never mind that I’m not in school. The other day, my friend was like “Are you ever going to blog again?” And I said, “Why yes, I am.” But you know, I had a lot of freelance stuff, then wedding stuff, and then I got married, and then I had a honeymoon, and then I came back, blahbity blah. I have been knitting, albeit somewhat sporadically, but now that I am weaning myself off wedding blogs (so hard), I am back to knitting blogs.

I will leave you with a photo from the honeymoon, from The Bon Marche in Paris:


Of course I had to visit the yarn shop!!

Posted in Uncategorized, Yarn Stores at September 7th, 2010.