Funny how a recurring theme can start to happen in the matter of a day. Dining in San Francisco has always been one of favorite things in this divine city. The humble but glorious egg yolk the recurring theme on my culinary adventures. Above on pasta at Zuni Cafe and below on prime beef tartare at Wayfare Tavern. Breaking open magically creating this most amazing sauce. Natural beauty.
The very freshest eggs are not always the easiest to peel when making hard boiled eggs. As we head into deviled egg season, buy your eggs 5 to 7 days before you need to use them for a much easier time peeling.
From all of us at Watson Kennedy–sending you all the best Easter Sunday wishes! May your day be filled with family/friends, good food, laughter, deviled eggs and a chocolate treat. Or two. Sending also happy Passover wishes. Whether you are celebrating on this day, or not, I hope it is a glorious one for you in your part of the world.
Much love from Seattle,
I am often struck by the simple beauty of simple things that fill our day. I marvel in them often, finding it really helps to slow down the moment and makes me ever present in it. All from a carton of eggs, you ask? Yep. Just the other day I opened this up and was just taken with them–all the slight color & size variations. They say we eat with our eyes first. So true. My point with all of this really is we have to eat to stay healthy. We might as well nourish our soul in the process and enjoy the visual of our food too. I left these out on the counter from the very beginning of the cooking process, working with them last, so I could gander at them throughout. Their singular beauty catching my eye as I worked away making a meal.
I almost always know or at least have an idea of what I am going to write about/post in the morning before my head hits the pillow the night before. But not always. Last night was such a night that I was just wrapping my head around ideas and TPS said “I made that Spaghetti Carbonara and wrote about it for you, why not use that?” Which he did in January, which was so delicious and so lovely that he wrote out the recipe to be used on the blog and shared with you all. Which I stored away and promptly forgot about. Easily as tasty in July. Today’s post, courtesy of Mister Sive.
Spaghetti Carbonara is a core comfort food in the Watson Sive household. I think this may have been one of the dishes that “sealed the deal” with my husband. Simple, tasty, and hearty, it has a terrific combination of smoky bacon (need we say more?), the sweetness of peas, and the warmth of pasta and eggs.
1 pound bacon
1 pound spaghetti
1 regular sized package frozen peas
1/2 cup loosely grated Parmesan
lots of fresh pepper
salt to taste
Dice the bacon small and cook in a skillet over medium heat. Drain off the fat as you go along, and try to time the cooking so the bacon is still warm for assembly.
Break the eggs into a large pasta or mixing bowl and loosely mix with a fork.
Empty the frozen peas into a colander.
Cook the pasta to just a tad over al dente. Ideally, in a two stage pasta pot with an integral strainer, so you can drain the pasta and save the hot pasta water. Dip the frozen peas into the pasta water to flash cook (this is all they’ll need; if cooked longer, they become too soft.)
Immediately toss the hot pasta in the eggs, cooking them, and quickly add the other ingredients. Let sit for a minute for the eggs to complete cook and the flavors to merge.
Serve in pasta bowls, top with a touch more pepper, grab a glass of hearty red, and all will be well in the world.
As we were leaving Easter brunch last Sunday, our host Sarah presented us with fresh eggs from her chickens. There is just something about the gift of food that has special meaning on so many levels. To nourish, to be enjoyed visually, a remembrance of the day–the gift of giving food is always such a gracious act. Fresh eggs are such a treat. We are often on the hunt for them at farm stands when they are available. The deep orange of the yolks and the magnificent color variations of the shells makes them truly like little works of art. Whether eaten or just looking at them sitting in the fridge set in a bowl, fresh eggs are just little gifts. Now I am hungry… A restful, peaceful Sunday everyone.
The Silver Palate cookbooks are sort of cooking bibles in our household. Many an August, I will make a version of their potato salad that is always a potato-y hit. I have altered the recipe over the years but the overall feel/taste is purely Silver Palate. Their recipe calls for a heart stopping 20 hard boiled eggs to the 4 pounds of potatoes. It is just too eggy when I really want the potatoes to shine. Don’t get me wrong, I adoooore eggs, in every way, but the 2 eggs to a pound of potatoes still does the yummy trick. The vinegar and mustard kick the flavor up considerably. I leave out some other things that it calls for in the book, as well as I don’t peel the potatoes. I like the extra texture & flavor the skin adds. Here is my spin on this classic.
4 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
1/2 cup white wine vinegar
1/2 cup olive oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 cups mayonnaise
5 tablespoons Dijon mustard
8 hard-cooked eggs, peeled
1. Drop the potatoes into a kettle of cold, salted water. Bring to a boil and cook until tender but still firm.
2. When done, drain the potatoes and drop them into a mixing bowl; roughly slice them. Sprinkle the still-hot potatoes with vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper.
3. Add the mayonnaise and mustard; toss gently to combine.
4. Add eggs and roughly slice and toss again. I like to serve this still warm right after I make it but if you can’t, cool to room temperature, cover and refrigerate overnight. Before serving, toss again, correct seasoning and add more mayonnaise if needed.
Ahhhh, simple luxuries. The above white truffle butter is one of those things I like to have sitting in the fridge waiting for a big steaming bowl of pasta or a big bowl of popcorn. A few spoonfuls can transform both. Of course, buying truffles can set you back quite a few bills, but this truffle butter (and there are several fab brands out there, this is a current favorite) is not expensive by comparison, usually around $6 to $8. It lasts quite awhile, packs a serious truffle punch, and you really only need to use a little to really infuse the truffle essence. TPS was at a fundraiser dinner the other evening that I was not able to attend. When I got home from working late, I knew I really wanted a hearty, comforting meal after a long day. We still had some of the amazing fresh eggs that were a gift that I wrote about a week or so ago, as well as a baguette that was needing to be eaten that night. Scrambled eggs it would be! Growing up, my Dad would make us scrambled eggs for supper on occasion. It always makes me think of him when I have them for dinner. Here is a quick take on making eggs a simple luxury meal really at any time of the day.
Turn oven to 400 degrees while you cut up the baguette to bite sized cubes. Scatter on a baking pan. Dose with a healthy amount of extra virgin olive oil, salt & pepper. Put in oven, keeping a close eye on them, being sure to turn them every so often to ensure they don’t burn and that they brown evenly. When they are close to the brown-ness you like, sprinkle a generous portion of freshly grated Parmesan over the whole lot, letting that melt into the cubes. Take out of oven and set aside while you scramble the eggs. Yes, these make a very good thing to snack on as you scramble said eggs. Next, break 3 eggs into a bowl and whisk adding a splash of milk, S&P. On very low heat, add the egg mixture to a waiting buttered pan being sure to fold often with a spatula so the eggs don’t overcook. Cooking them on a low heat really helps that process of not overcooking them. Once done, take off of heat and add a big dollop of the truffle butter and mix throughout the scrambled eggs. I like both the white and the black truffle butter, but this go round, we had white in the fridge. Spoon over the croutons that you have put onto a plate. Get ready for some flavor explosions. I adore this combo. The earthiness of the truffle mixed with the fluffiness of the eggs mixed with the sweetness of the Parm on the croutons with a hint of the olive oil that has infused into the bread. Just so darn good. Pairs beautifully with a glass of champagne or white wine.
We received these amazing eggs the other day from our friend Sarah. Her chickens were busy and she knew we would enjoy them. Enjoy them we will! Giving of food is such a gracious act. I love giving and receiving edible things, as it fulfills one of our most basic needs. So often food is given in a time of sadness (when someone is ill or after a death) to help lift the spirit. My thought when we received the eggs is that it is so lovely just to receive the gift of food, just because. Next time we make brownies or cookies, I want to make extra and give them to a friend, just because. Or if we make a big batch of chicken stock, give some of the containers away to friends. A ‘just because’ gift. They really can be some of the very best gifts to give, or receive.