November 27, 2011
I had never heard of pavlova until I started dating an Australian. Since then it has popped up in conversations, magazines and websites all around me. The colorful and tropical toppings, the mounds of whipped cream, the crunchy outside with the fluffy marshmallow center. And for all that chat and daydreaming, I’ve only actually eaten it once. And made it myself? Never.
We’ve thought about it. And there was a failed attempt during a New York winter a few years ago headed by Mr. F, but that one went awry pretty early on.
I found the Great Australian Pavlova Blog Hop and decided to join right away. Making the national dessert of Australia/New Zealand (I’m not taking sides here, you guys can battle it out) for a virtual bake-off of sorts, gave me the perfect incentive to approach this dessert of legend.
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September 15, 2011
After an enthusiastic visit to the Harris Farms grocery store yesterday, (deals like 3 bundles of asparagus for $5 incited kid-in-candy-store-like behavior from this gal) I was inspired to cook something as soon as I got home.
I made some simple stewed rhubarb. (Chopped rhubarb, a few teaspoons of raw sugar, a couple of tablespoons of water, and a sprinkle of cinnamon left to stew covered for 10-15 minutes.) The vibrant magenta color and the spicy tartness that sprang from what looked like odd colored celery made my day.
For dinner later on I created a veritable veggie feast. I roasted eggplant which I layered with alternating fillings of pesto and fresh Harris Farms brand ricotta. I then topped it with a tomato-based vegetable sauce made with onion, broccoli, mushroom, black olive and roasted garlic. It was accompanied with a side of simply seasoned roasted asparagus.
There is something exhilarating about creating a meal so delicious and substantial out of almost entirely plants. For me anyway.
Although, it would be impossible to not give credit to the mvp of the meal – the ricotta. It took my veggie stack to the next level. It’s creamy mellow sweetness brought a richness that perfectly complimented the zesty tomato sauce and meaty slices of eggplant. I’ve had to use it sparingly and put it away immediately after portioning it out for fear of eating the entire 300mL container in one go. With just a spoon and a salt shaker. Cause that’s how I roll. Or would, if left to my own devices.
…Moving on, this morning I made Greek yogurt parfaits starring my stewed rhubarb and fresh strawberries. Made my day again. Delish.