Friday, August 30, 2013

Week Twelve: A New England Stir-Fry

What a great weekend. Dan and I were in Newport, RI for our annual trip with a bunch of friends for beaching, polo, and relaxing. We had perfectly sunny weather (as evidenced by my sunburn) for all of the above. I’d cut up half my watermelon from last week and tossed it with a chopped cucumber for a beach snack – unfortunately, though, it did not make it into the beach cooler. I was surprised to discover that it was a white watermelon – normal on the outside but bright yellow flesh inside. So pretty! Tastes just the same as a red watermelon, and the rest of it froze up nicely to put in my water.
Sunset over the polo grounds.
We didn't go for our usual Tuesday pickup this week, and we learned that Thursdays appear to be a lot busier than Tuesdays! With a lot more kids running around being cute. I picked up my usual carrots and potatoes, some Italian (I think) peppers, arugula, and another watermelon. Aly got more tomatoes, some eggplant, lettuce, bell peppers, and collards. We also got a half-pint of raspberries... time-consuming but worth the effort!
Peppers and arugula.
Now I know why they're so darn expensive at the store!
I also took a walk through the herb garden, which I haven’t done in ages. I made a conscious effort to pick stuff I thought I’d use, so ended up with chocolate mint, regular mint, lavender, dill, Thai basil, and purple basil. I had grand plans for a lavender or chocolate mint mojito, but my hopes were dashed upon discovering that we had no seltzer in the house. (I settled for some Newport Vineyards merlot instead. Way more local than Caribbean rum!)
Another yummy watermelon.

Clockwise from top left: Dill, chocolate mint, mint, purple basil, Thai basil, lavender.

New England Stir Fry
I made up this recipe name based on the ingredients and cooking method: a little New England boiled dinner, a little fun stir fry. We grilled some chicken sausage and the ear of corn, tossed the carrots with butter and sugar/cinnamon, and then plopped the potatoes into the peppers’ fry pan. Yum.

1 package chicken sausage (we used precooked Sweet Apple)
3 or 4 small bell peppers, cut into 1” pieces
6 medium carrots, peeled, halved lengthwise and then crosswise
2 pounds potatoes, scrubbed, and cut into chunks
Oil for frying, about 2 T
1 ear of corn per person (we only had one on hand, which we decided at the last minute to use)
2 T butter
1-2 tsp cinnamon (to taste)
1 T sugar (to taste)

Put the potatoes and carrots in a pot with plenty of salted water and bring to a boil. Test the carrots for done-ness first, as they cook faster. Scoop out with a slotted spoon and put into a bowl. Mix in the butter to melt, and then add cinnamon and sugar. Cover and keep warm. Check the potatoes – they shouldn’t be too mushy. Fry the peppers in the oil in a big frying pan until nice and crisp. Drain the potatoes and add to the pan with the peppers to finish.

Hot peppers!
Almost-candied carrots.

Meanwhile, grill the sausage and corn (keep most of the husk on but get as much silk off as you can). Alternately, you could probably cook the sausage in the pan with the peppers, adding them later to let the sausage cook through. And the corn could probably be broken up and added to the potatoes and carrots.


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