Saturday, August 28, 2004

Food as Love:

I have a correspondent from somewhere in Massachusetts who strikes me as a male Gabriela. We do an awful lot of talking about food, among other things like the typical religion, politics, etc. Anyhow, inspired by his words on homegrown cherry peppers stuffed with sharp provolone and prosciutto, preserved in (the best you can afford) olive oil, I had a bit of a food escapade of my own yesterday. Capone Foods is just outside of Union Square in Somerville. I often go there to buy olives and cheese, as they've the best outside of Eastie, as far as I'm concerned. The prices aren't bad, either. Since yesterday was payday, I decided to treat myself to some good olive oil and a bit of fresh aged cheese to add with my herbs for a homemade pesto. Perhaps it was Mr. Capone manning the counter yesterday, don't know, but whoever it was is a great salesperson. He gave me a taste of some very expensive balsamic vinegar. I couldn't afford it, so it's on my wish list from Santa this year. I got a bit of considerably less expensive but still kind of pricey vinegar. Lovely how smooth even that is on the tongue.
My other impulse buy was a package of amaretto cookies.

Dinner last night? Fresh tomatoes with some of that new balsamic vinegar, fresh ground pepper and salt. Chicken breasts in my newly-made pesto. For dessert, quite a coup: I took four or five peaches that were on the verge of being too ripe, rubbed a bit of fuzz off them, then pitted and cut them into bits. Crushed them and added a bit of anisette liqueur to them (Had the Hiram Walker stuff hanging around. I'm sure that anything else would do in a pinch.) Allowed all this to sit while we ate. At serving time, I put the peaches in bowls, topped each with a dollop of plain sour cream, then crushed a couple amaretti on them. This was beyond food bliss and into the realm of almost erotic love. A first kiss from that older, more experienced man. My word. (fanning myself.)

Back again. Pesto Beverli-ese:

3 cups loosely packed basil leaves
1/3 c. freshly ground parmesan cheese (I used pecorino this time 'round)
1/3 c. olive oil
3 cloves garlic
1/3 c. pignoli (or walnuts)

Whirl the basil leaves in a food processor or blender with the (roughly chopped) garlic and nuts. Add the oil to this mixture in a thin stream. Stir in the cheese. Makes about a cup and a half. I'm told that this will keep for a week in the fridge, but honestly, it never seems to last that long here.

I'm going to try a fines herbes pesto and maybe even a parsley one later on. I'll keep you posted on the developments.

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