Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Domestic Goddess: Garden Girl

I wish I had a green thumb. I have a knack for fabric, but when it comes to growing things, I leave it to the produce department at Sprouts Market.

My sweet friend Lisa Payne is not only a successful business woman(http://www.guntherdouglas.com/), and a mom to adorable 2 year old Brady, but she is also a great gardener and cook. While hanging out in her beautiful backyard the other night (check out the view!) I was green with envy over her garden.

The variety is vast and the pickins are good:
  • Red, yellow and orange bell peppers

  • Ancho peppers

  • Jalapeno peppers

  • Acorn and butternut squash

  • Yellow squash

  • Zucchini squash

  • All kinds of tomatoes: big red, cherry, tomatillo

  • Cucumber

  • Strawberries

  • Herbs: tarragon, rosemary, sage, basil, oregano, mint

While I'm definitely inviting myself back at the end of the summer for the "cornucopia harvest feast", I did enjoy a fresh, simple and delicious asparagus dish Lisa had prepared that night. It's perfect as a summer side:

Jumbo Asparagus with Meyer Lemon Dressing
20 spears jumbo asparagus (about 1 lb) peeled
Coarse sea salt
Freshly ground pepper
Meyer lemon dressing (recipe below)

In a pot of boiling, heavily salted water, cook the asparagus about 4 minutes. Drain well. Shock in a bowl of ice water until cool, then drain well. If serving warm, toss with about 1/3 cup of the dressing. season with salt and pepper.

Meyer Lemon Dressing
Juice and zest of 3 Meyer lemons
1 teaspoon mustard
1 tablespoon egg yolk (discard the rest)
1 small shallot, minced
Salt and freshly ground pepper
1 1/2 cups canola oil

In a mixing bowl, whisk together the juice and zest, mustard, egg yolk, shallot, and salt and pepper. Whisk in the canola oil in a slow stream to emulsify. Note: this recipe will make a little extra dressing.

Not only will Lisa be featured in future posts with more fabulous recipes, I have many girlfriends who know their way around the kitchen. More recipes to come...

I'll bring the wine!

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