Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Things I Am Loving This Week

It's the first Tuesday of 2010 and time again for "Things I Am Loving This Week"--the (mostly) food related things I am enjoying and want to share.

First, a very recent love...I watched one of my celebrity chef "crushes," Ming Tsai, make this Preserved Lemon-Edamame Tapenade on The Today Show yesterday morning, thought it (and Ming of course!) ;-) looked delicious, and found the pairing intriguing. Since I had preserved some lemons last month, I had everything I needed to make it and so I whipped it right up. It was great on sesame rice crackers and I also used it as a yummy topping for a veggie burger for lunch. I loved how the flavors work together in this--it gets even better as it sits and it would be great on some grilled fish too.

Preserved Lemon-Edamame Tapenade
by Ming Tsai
(Serves 4)

1 cup cooked and peeled edamame, rough chopped
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 teaspoon minced ginger
1/3 cup minced, preserved lemons
1 tablespoon minced parsley
1 tablespoon low sodium organic soy sauce
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

Combine all tapenade ingredients in a large bowl or mortar and pestle, check for flavor and season.

*Watch the salt on this one and taste carefully before adding any. I rinsed my preserved lemon and still found the tapenade plenty salty with the soy sauce so no additional salt was needed.

(Love edamame? This Edamame-Feta Dip from my early days of blogging ;-) is one of my all-time favorites and really delicious too).

I was happy to find some bags of tea from one of my favorite brands, Teavana in my Christmas stocking. My Mom knows what I love and picked out some great tropical flavors "Arcadian Apple" (a blend of white and green tea with apple, papaya and pineapple), "EverSummer Punch" (an herbal infusion of kiwi, pineapple, lemongrass and orange), and this one, "Tiki Twilight" (described as "Succumb to the taste of serene shorelines where wild pineapple and sweet hibiscus blossoms mingle in the breeze, accentuated by a smooth blend of white and black tea."). I have tried them all hot and will be trying them iced too. Yes, I loves my tea! ;-)

Finally, one thing I really love are used bookstores with good cookbook collections. I LOVE old, quirky cookbooks--they are such fun to read and cook from. I met my best friend from Jr. High for lunch and Spanish coffees in downtown Portland and was about 20 minutes early, giving me just enough time to duck into a little bookstore and find a few books that I had to add to my collection. For $19.00 total (love that price!), I got "Herbs for The Kitchen" first written in 1939, (my copy is from 1945), and "A Matter of Taste: The Definitive Seasoning Cookbook" from 1965. Both of these are fun resources for spices and herbs with lots of interesting folklore and information. Then I had to buy "Recipes for Living in Big Sur," published by the Big Sur Historical Society in 1981 because it was mentioned in "My Nepenthe" by Romney Steele, the cookbook I just reviewed (here), and my finding it was kismet. This is a fun, slightly "crunchy-granola" kind of cookbook that is full of colorful history and has chapters like "Living Off the Land," "Self-Sufficiency," and "Starting from Scratch." I can tell I am going to have fun with this one.

So those are "The Things I Am Loving This Week." How about you--what are you loving right now?


  1. The preserved lemon and edamame sounds so delish and different from my normal fare! And what a fun, fabulous find with the cookbooks. :)

  2. When I was in SF I went into a bookstore that had tons of cookbooks like this...people ate the strangest things back in the day.

    That tapenade sounds so intriguing...two things I never would have thought to pair...and yet they sound so delicious...

  3. I love old cookbooks, and I'm looking forward to becoming a better collector. Thanks for sharing the recipe on the lemon-edamame tapenade.

  4. Boy, Ming is not afraid of big flavour - I love that!
    We don't get him up here but I saw him once in a guest appearance on Christine Cushing Live. Seems like a great guy and fab cook... and, very importantly, easy on the eyes!
    Love the lovin' this week!

  5. nice collection of things this week :)

  6. That edamame sounds wonderful! Thanks for the recipe.

  7. The Preserved Lemon-Edamame Tapenade sounds ,yea i agree,something so different and to my part of the world so so new too...Oh the books excite me all right.....and yeah fantastic pics!!

  8. Preserved Lemon-Edamame Tapenade sounds really good, great combination!

  9. I love those cookbooks Deb. I'm particularly interested in the Big Sur book and the chapters called self sufficiency and living off the land. I'm sure that is a good read! I love edamame and I that tapenade is delicious!

  10. I don't know what makes that a tapenade, but I love the combination of flavours! That would be so good with some fish. And Ming Tsai is a very attractive man.

  11. I'm a big Ming Tsai fan. We always used to eat in his restaurant when we were in Boston. The edamame tapenade sounds fantastic. I've just put it on my must try list


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