My tomato plants suck. Or I suck. I don’t know what I’m doing. Watering too much, not enough, not feeding them enough, feeding them too much, no clue. One has crinkled brown leaves with blotchy looking tomatoes. Another only has a few tomatoes on it. Two others are small and spindly. And my zucchini plants have this horrid white mold on the leaves. I breathed it in yesterday and felt like I was going to die. Good riddance, I’m sick of zucchinis anyway. But I don’t know how to cut them back without dying of mold ingestion. Buying tomatoes at Whole Foods for this recipe pained me. Pained me. But holy crap are they good. Hey, the jalapeños are mine! I’ve got so many! And they’re so spicy. I don’t know what the hell I was thinking with this recipe. I can’t handle heat.
I just found out last week that Biggest Loser won’t have a fall season this year. What am I supposed to do. I already gained an hour of my life back when they dropped last season down to one hour and I wasn’t happy about that. I’ve had Tuesdays free since whenever the last season ended and now I’m going to continue that through till like January? wtheck. Well, not really true – I like MasterChef. It’s so stupid. WalMart is the official grocer of the show. The hosts go on and on about how beautiful WalMart’s USDA Choice steaks are. I want to kick the TV. I need to watch PBS cooking shows. I’m so f-ing sick of regular TV and their snappy editing where I don’t learn anything. I’m going to watch Simply Ming. I’ll learn about potstickers. And all about what a giant douchebag he is.
It’s almost September. I’m getting excited about buying boots. Not winter boots, fancy boots. And wool and plaid. That’s how I gauge my readiness for the next season. What a girl. I can also gauge with food, too of course. Am I excited about winter squash? YES! Last year I remember dragging my feet about making winter squash. I think as soon as it hits September I might be ready. Because, man do kabocha and delicata squashes sound awesome right now. I’ve used my slow cooker three times in the last week. That’s another sure sign. Holy crap, that reminds me – we made the best slow cooked chicken in that thing. We used leftover broth and fat from slow cooking a hunk of pork and after the chicken was done, I took it out and pan-fried it to crisp the skin and it was THE BEST CHICKEN SKIN I’VE EVER HAD. Like crisped chicken confit. Or something. Oh lord.
roasted tomato mackerel with pickled jalapeños
adapted from Rick Bayless, serves 4
I used some brine from some cucumber pickles I had in the fridge. How clever I am.
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1/2 cup water
1 tablespoon coarse sea salt
3 jalapeños, sliced into 1/4 inch rings
1/2 tablespoon coriander seeds
3 garlic cloves, chopped
1. Combine first three ingredients in a jar and stir to mix.
2. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix. Let sit for a couple hours – no biggie if you don’t have that much time, they’ll just be less pickly. These will last a long time in the fridge.
roasted tomato mackerel
2 pounds tomatoes, sliced into 1/2 inch slices
6 cloves garlic, unpeeled
1/2 cup cilantro, chopped
2 whole Spanish mackerels, gutted
1 lemon, sliced into 1/4 inch rounds
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Lay the tomato slices in a single layer on a baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil. Place under the broiler and broil for 8 minutes.
2. Reduce heat to 425 degrees, and move the top oven rack to the middle position.
3. Remove the tomatoes, sprinkle cilantro on, and place the two fish on top.
4. Stuff the lemon rounds into the fishes’ cavities. Lightly coat them with olive oil, and sprinkle with sea salt and pepper.
5. Bake for 30 minutes.