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Salted Butter

Salt and butter can be a match made in the culinary heavens. This corn on the cob season, I like to take a pat of unsalted butter and douse it with really good chunky salt, like French fleur de sel, English Maldon or US Jacobsen. That way you can control how salty you get your butter. Plus I love how it looks on the table in a little dish. Easy for guests to pass around. Also enjoyable next time you serve a baguette with your meal. Put a good sized piece of butter with chunks of salt atop next to it–I promise it will be gone once it makes its way around the table.



Shaved Asparagus with Irish Butter & Parmesan 

Our dinner last week at Prune, they peeled/shaved the asparagus. This is not a technique I have ever employed. Then I remembered something I had seen about the Canal House folks and that is how they prepared it for a certain dish. So, from memory of both taste and from reading, I thought I would give it a go. Turned out pretty darn tasty and will do again, for sure.

This is the time to use really thick asparagus. With a vegetable peeler, shave/peel about two-thirds of the skin off the stem. This will leave them a little naked looking, but that is what you are going for. Roast in a 400 degree oven on a sheet pan after liberally rubbing each stalk with extra virgin olive oil. Lightly sprinkle over salt to the evoo bathed asparagus. Watch ever so diligently in the oven as not to over-cook, shacking the pan several times to move things around. Take out of oven. Place now cooked asparagus on a plate, add a dollop of Irish butter, and then shower with shaved Parmesan. Yum.



Watermelon Radish

20140719-064727.jpg It is always a bit of a thrill to try a new food for the first time. My book signing the other afternoon at Met Market was my first time to have a Watermelon radish. Also known as Rooseheart or Red Meat, it is an heirloom Chinese Daikon radish. They were so kind and were serving things I wrote about in the book. Radish with butter and a bit of sea salt was on the menu, along with a few other tasty bits. But I was so taken with the Watermelon radish I had to buy one and take it home so we could share it with guests. Last evening our Friday night pizza & martini dinner would be the time. The radish is the size of a tennis ball with a thick white skin. You cut that away to reveal a pinky reddish center. It is a bit softer than a standard radish. The taste is sublime. To add to the sensation, I spread a healthy dollop of soft French butter to the top, then added a sprinkling of Fleur de Sel salt. A perfect bite sized packed with a myriad of flavor sensations. Just a simple thing to serve with drinks. If you see one of these on your grocery shopping excursions, give it a try. Really enjoyable.

Happy Summer Saturday to you all! I am excited for my walk around the Market this morning before I open the shop to see all the bounty the season has been producing–will share that with you tomorrow.