Saturday, November 22, 2008

Moroccan Night

Apparently for the time being this is going to morph into a food blog. I used to do posts about MY cooking ages ago but now we are talking about Billy's skills in the kitchen. I am not much for following recipes. I usually fly by the seat of my pants and make stuff up. Sometimes it turns out great and sometimes it does not. I love to cook but I have too much of a distracted, scatter brain to do the recipe thing very often. Billy on the other hand is not a distracted scatter brain by any stretch of the imagination. He is a calm, collected, focused brain. A rare gem in this world. Anyway... let us move on from talk of brains and get to the edibles. Tonight Chef Mclane whipped up a chick pea tagine found in this past months Vegetarian Times magazine. He added a fresh minted yogurt sauce and let me tell ya it was mighty fine. You may be asking yourself "What the Hell is a tagine?" Tagines are cooking vessels commonly used in North African countries like Morocco and Algeria. It consists of two pieces - a plate like bottom and a conical shaped lid. The bottom doubles as a serving dish, which comes in handy for nomads (like us.) Heat is retained for hours in a tagine, which is used on the stovetop in kitchens. Too bad we don't actually own a real tagine. They are pretty cool looking and some can be really ornate, like this one...

You can easily complete tagine recipes on the stove top without using an actual vessel. Which is what Billy did. We had a dessert tonight of broiled grapefruit with honey, vanilla and cardamom. It was my fist ever hot grapefruit experience. It was quite good... being all at once sweet, sour and pungent with the addition of the cardamom spice. Here's a pic...

Yes... I know that it looks like a burnt grapefruit. But trust me... it was so much more than that.

We have started to develop an addiction to the store Sur La Table which there is a retail shop for in downtown Carmel. I convince myself that I need all kinds of stuff while in there. Like this fabulous copper fleur de lis cookie cutter.

Or this cast iron $119 Le Creuset skillet that weighs so much you can barely lift it. This thing will still be around when all of us are dead and gone. We have refrained from buying too much so far but we do go in there regularly and drool over the goods and the cooking possibilities they would afford us.

I did grab this cute notepad for Billy while I was poking around at Anthropologie last night. It is a weekly menu planner. He can jot down his grocery list on the back of it for when we do our shopping. It has a magnet on the back so you can stick it on your fridge door. Fun!


Anonymous said...

Dearest Bethany and Billy - you could tie this whole blog together if Billy cooked a gourmet meal for Rudy and you posted a photograph of him eating it.
Love, Bernadette

Bethany said...

Or perhaps Billy could cook a gourmet meal for you and Rudy together... that would really bring it home. The challenge will be settling on a dish that both you and Rudy are interested in eating. He prefers roast chicken with apples and has a strong passion for cheese... Swiss being his current favorite. Let us know what your menu additions should be and we will be ready for your next visit miss.