Archive for September, 2009

This summer, we did many things.

We ate a lot of ice cream. There are quite a few ice cream shoppes in our neighborhood. I am not complaining. This is a photo taken at the Bombay Ice Creamery.

We had picnics at Dolores Park, and got to watch an outdoor movie there one night. They were showing Amelie.

We saw the Warhol exhibit at the de Young museum. After our visit, I couldn’t get The Velvet Underground’s music out of my head.

We walked along the Marina, and watched people sunbathe and kitesurf.

We rode the wooden roller coaster at the Santa Cruz beach boardwalk, and went searching for the sea lions at the pier. They like to sunbathe, too.

We hiked along coastal trails,

and in the Sierras, where we camped underneath the stars.

We met up with friends in Seattle and kayaked through the San Juan islands. It was an amazing adventure. We saw so much wildlife — porpoises, seals, jellyfish, starfish, crab, heron, bats, bald eagles, deer, and a little mouse who stole goodies from our frying pan after dinner.

Lastly, we enjoyed the bounty that summer had to offer with weekly trips to the local farmers’ market.

And with that, I will leave you with photos and recipes from a summer supper we made. Original recipes from here and here.

Heirloom tomatoes

Sticky Balsamic Ribs

Corn and Tomato Scramble

It may be fall already, but I believe that any season is a season for ribs. I will surely miss the tomatoes, though — they will be around for only a little while longer.

Heirloom Tomatoes (We had this at a restaurant some time ago as an appetizer. It is so easy to prepare and so delicious.)
Serves 4

4 medium-sized tomatoes, sliced at a quarter-inch thick or less. Arrange on platter and drizzle over with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Add a sprinkling of salt and grated, thin pieces of parmesan.

Sticky Balsamic Ribs
Serves 8

For ribs
8 large garlic cloves
2 tablespoons finely chopped rosemary
2 tablespoons packed dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 teaspoon cayenne
8 lb baby back pork ribs (We used 3 racks, about 2 lb each)
1 cup water

For glaze
2 cups hot water
1 cup balsamic vinegar
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar

Marinate and roast ribs:

* Mince and mash garlic to a paste with 1 tsp salt. Stir together with rosemary, brown sugar, vinegar, cayenne, 1 Tbsp salt, and 1 tsp pepper. Rub evenly all over ribs and transfer to roasting pans. Marinate, chilled, 8 to 24 hours.
* Preheat oven to 425°F with racks in upper and lower thirds.
* Pour 1/2 cup water into each roasting pan and tightly cover pans with foil. Roast ribs, switching position of pans halfway through, until meat is very tender, about 1 3/4 hours. Remove pans from oven and transfer ribs to a platter.

Make glaze and grill ribs:

* Add 1 cup hot water to each roasting pan and scrape up brown bits. Skim off and discard fat, then transfer liquid to a 10-inch skillet. Add vinegar and brown sugar and bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Boil until reduced to about 1 cup, about 15 minutes.
* Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over medium-hot charcoal (medium heat for gas). We used the oven, since we do not have a grill. We put the ribs under the broiler for a few minutes at the very end.
* Brush some of glaze onto both sides of racks of ribs. Grill, turning occasionally, until ribs are hot and grill marks appear, about 6 minutes.
* Brush ribs with more glaze and serve remaining glaze on the side.

Corn and Tomato Scramble
Serves 4

1 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon cider vinegar (I used what I had — red wine vinegar)
3/4 lb tomatoes, cut into bite-size pieces
1 bunch scallions, finely chopped, keeping white parts and greens separate
1 tablespoons unsalted butter
corn kernels from 4 ears of corn

Whisk together oil, vinegar, 1/2 tsp salt, and some pepper. Toss tomatoes with dressing.
While tomatoes marinate, cook white parts of scallions in butter with some salt and pepper in a 12-inch heavy skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 4 minutes. Add corn and sauté until just tender, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl and cool. Stir together corn, tomatoes, and scallion greens.


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