Thursday, July 26, 2012

A Tumble of Tomatoes

My very sweet friends at Beyond the Green Door recently stopped by and brought us a package of their garden bounty - fresh Roma tomatoes.

A couple of months ago, I saw David Lebovitz's recipe for Oven-Roasted Tomatoes. They looked great, but I don't grow tomatoes, and they're rather expensive at the market. So I hadn't tried them yet. This garden gift gave me the opportunity to roast my own.

I loosely followed David's directions, omitting the herbs and pepper and increasing the garlic.

I sliced the tomatoes in half, cored them, and tossed them with some good olive oil, sea salt, and lots of sliced garlic.

Then I lay them neatly cut-side down.

I baked them for over two hours, and ended up with this: A tangy-sweet and deeply flavored pan of tomatoes.

They were great on their own, with simple bread and butter, and on sandwiches with baked tofu.

Thanks, guys. 

Monday, July 23, 2012

Market Report - July 21

Another light market week, but we got some really good stuff:

Top row:
Cinnamon Sugar Donut Holes from Red Rabbit Cooperative Bakery. They didn't make it an hour past the market. Two hungry market shoppers make quick work of a box of donut holes.
Baby Bella mushrooms from Kitchen Pride. A staple. We get these a lot.
Pluots from Bar W Farm and Ranch. These were much firmer than plums, but very juicy and sweet, with none of the super-sour flavor that plum skins can have.
Whole wheat flour from Richardson Farms.

Bottom Row:
Cucumbers, beautiful eggplant, Sun Gold tomatoes, and spicy Anaheim peppers, all from Tecolote.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Market Report - July 14

I went light at the market this week, only picking up a few things. But they're all very good.

Clockwise, starting at top left:

Kombucha (Cherry Honeydew and Pineapple Super Greens) from Buddha's Brew. It comes in pints, but I got two quarts.The Cherry Honeydew is a new flavor, and it's really, really good.

A fat-stalked, giant tangle of edamame from Tecolote. I've never had it fresh, so I'm excited to try it.

Serranos and sunflower sprouts from Ottmers Family Farm. Delicious in a salad with Tecolote's cucumbers.

Ridiculously juicy and delicious Asian Pears from the friendly farmers at Harvest Time. I thought I'd make a spicy slaw with these and the serranos, but I keep eating them out of hand.

Shallots from Munkebo Farm.

Hungarian medium peppers and juicy, thin-skinned cucumbers from Tecolote.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Guajillo Sauce Cooking: Baked Tofu

We eat a lot of tofu in this house. Most often, it's pan-fried or baked. I love the flavor and texture of fresh tofu, but baking it makes it much chewier and denser; it really transforms it. If there's sugar in the sauce, it caramelizes in the oven, providing a rich, deep flavor.

So that double recipe I made of guajillo sauce I made? It turned out to be a whole lot of sauce: four pint-size jars full. Its tangy, spicy, sweet flavor made it a perfect candidate for a baked tofu glaze.

Baked and ready to go

To make it, I sliced one 12 ounce package of extra-firm tofu. The stuff I get, made by White Wave, is very dense, so it can be sliced thinly. Then I coated the tofu in a mixture of a half-pint of guajillo sauce mixed with a tablespoon of sriracha. (I like my baked tofu spicy.) After baking for 20 minutes at 325 degrees, I flipped the slices over and baked them for another half hour.

Normally, I bake tofu at a higher temperature (375 or 400 degrees), but I was baking something else that required a lower temperature. At the higher temperature, check the tofu after 15 minutes to ensure it doesn't burn. Flip it, then bake for another 15 minutes, or until the sauce adheres to the tofu and it's beginning to brown.
Sliced tofu and sauce
Tofu coated with sauce

The tofu is usually more browned after baking, but the low oven temperature prevented it from going too far. It was still delicious, both on sandwiches, and as a snack on its own.