Shrimp in a Pouch with Lemon Mayonnaise

Shrimp in a Pouch with Lemon Mayonnaise-1

Curried Cod in Parchment was one of our earliest blog posts.  After fantasizing about visiting Patmos, we thought it might be time to revisit the technique – with Shrimp in a Pouch with Lemon Mayonnaise.

This isn’t a fancy-pants recipe – it’s a remedy for the usual put-something-in-a-pan-then-put-something-else-in-a-pan-now-put-something-else-in-a-pan rut.  You can finish everything before the first half-hour of All Things Considered ends, and that includes whipping up a batch of homemade mayonnaise (the house record for non-professionals is about 2 minutes).  With luck the radio will be playing a story about Congressional budget negotiations while you devein the shrimp.  You can sublimate your feelings, whichever side of the fence you’re on, into the pointed end of a sharp knife.  Pause to pour yourself a glass of albariño.   You deserve it – you’re almost done making dinner.

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Littlenecks with Fava Pod Pesto

LIttlenecks with Fava Pod Pesto-1

Like any worthwhile relationship, Littlenecks with Fava Pod Pesto has its easy bits and its tricky parts.  The easy bits are the littlenecks. Lord knows, they seem to shoulder their way onto our blog with yet another clam recipe–Pick me! Pick me!–every three months or so.  There’s a reason we eat them so often – no prep to speak of, and they share.  Coax them open with a little heat and they leak their ambrosial juices into whatever else is in the pan.

Tagliatelle with Shad Roe, Pancetta and Spring Peas

Tagliatelle with Shad Roe, Pancetta and Spring Peas-1

The swallows of San Juan Capistrano return to their California mission home every March 19th, one of the natural world’s cyclic wonders.  Nature, however, may have had something rather less dependable in mind with the annual spring running of shadfish.  Last year we posted about shad roe on March 31st.  This year, we’re only a couple of weeks shy of June.  Shad roe is an ephemeral treat, briefly available on short notice, then vanishing, so when the season arrives you have to stay on you toes, prepared to swing into action at a moment’s notice.  I found three seafood stores had the roe… yesterday.  A single purveyor* had it the day I wanted it, one day before blogging.  So if you’re inclined to make this weeks’s  Tagliatelle with Shad Roe, Pancetta and Peas, finish reading this and immediately pick up the phone.  If your favorite fish vendor doesn’t have the roe today, he may be able to get it for you tomorrow.  Next week you might still get lucky, or not.  That’s the way shad rolls.   

Eat, drink, help.

The barricades have come down, and the improvised memorials for the victims of the Boston Marathon bombing have been moved to Copley Square park, but still, every day, fresh flowers and notes and signs appear, including the three small presents in the first photo.   (And no, I didn’t look inside them.)  I visited a …

Having your spuds and eating them too – Quick Boulangère Potatoes

Boulangère Potatoes TGF-1

Pity Antoine-Augustin Parmentier.  The late 18th century polymath would be rolling in his grave in Père Lachaise were he aware of the abuse heaped upon his beloved potato by modern nutritionists.  If there were ever a lobbyist for potatoes, it was Parmentier.  In Parmentier’s time most of Europe regarded the potato as fit for little more than animal fodder. In France cultivation of potatoes was forbidden by law, a natural outgrowth of then current French belief that potatoes were thought to cause leprosy. Parmentier became acquainted with potatoes while fed them as a prisoner in a Prussian prison during the Napoleonic wars, but few Frenchmen were willing to take him at his word about the benefits of eating them. Determined to bring his countrymen around to his way of thinking Parmentier threw himself into a decades long campaign of public demonstrations, potato-themed dinners for the rich and influential, and public lectures.    Today, as a member of the Gang of Three (along with rice and bread), potatoes stand accused of undermining the People’s waistline, usually in league with its natural allies, cream and cheese. But there’s a way of having one potatoes without taking on a wheelbarrow of calories. Enter Boulangère Potatoes.