my occasional musings on life, love, art, perfume ... what else is there?



Today is a good day.

I have sliced a bowlful of peaches for cobbler, dousing them with lemon juice, brown sugar and cinnamon ... I have a gorgeous bunch of swiss chard in the refrigerator which will become Chard with White Beans and Penne ... I can invoice a project that's been hanging over my head for two weeks, I have a healthy backlog of work, and my classes start Monday.

I am SO lucky (and thank God for my luck).

Today's recipes:

Martha Stewart's Peach Cobbler
Serves 8

10 ripe peaches, pitted and sliced (2 quarts) (I squeeze a lemon's worth of juice over them as well)
1/4 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons dark-brown sugar (I use more than this)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1 large egg
2/3 cup heavy cream
Vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, for serving
1. Preheat oven to 375°. Place peaches, lemon juice, cornstarch, dark-brown sugar, and cinnamon in a large bowl. Toss until well combined. Pour mixture into an 8 1/2-by-11 1/2-inch baking dish.
2. In a large bowl, combine flour, 1/4 cup granulated sugar, the baking powder, and salt. Using a fork, two knives, or a pastry blender, cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. 3. Whisk together egg and cream in a liquid-measuring cup. Slowly add this mixture to dry ingredients; mix with a fork until dough just comes together. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured board, and roughly shape into a 12-inch log. Using a bench scraper, cut log into twelve equal portions.
4. Place rough balls of dough on top of peach mixture. Sprinkle with remaining 2 tablespoons granulated sugar. Bake until golden brown, about 45 minutes. Transfer pan to a rack, and let cool slightly. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.

Mediterranean Diet Penne with Swiss Chard and White Beans
Serves: 6

1 good-sized bunch Swiss chard (about 10 to 12 ounces)
10 to 12 ounces penne pasta
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large onion, quartered and thinly sliced
3 to 4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 cup dry white wine or water
1 1/ 2 to 2 pounds diced ripe tomatoes (substitute one 28-ounce can diced tomatoes if good, fresh tomatoes are unavailable)
16-ounce can large white beans (cannellini), drained and rinsed
1/4 cup raisins or currants
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Grated fresh Parmesan cheese, preferably organic, or Parmesan-style soy cheese for topping, optional

1. Remove the stems from the Swiss chard and rinse it well. Drain lightly and chop the leaves coarsely.
2. Bring water to a boil in a large pot. Cook the pasta in rapidly simmering water for 10 to 12 minutes (or according to package directions), until al dente, then drain.
3. In the meantime, heat the oil in an extra-large saucepan or steep-sided stir-fry pan. Add the onions and garlic and saute over medium heat until the onion is golden, about 5 minutes.
4. Add the wine or water and the chard. Cover and cook just until the chard wilts down, stirring once or twice, about 3 minutes.
5. Stir in the tomatoes, beans, and raisins or currants. Cook just until everything is well heated through, another 4 to 5 minutes.
6. Combine the cooked pasta with the sauce in a large serving bowl. Toss well, then season to taste with salt and pepper, and toss again. Serve at once. Pass around fresh grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

Today's fragrance: clearing's Lavender Herbal, fresh, clean, stimulating. I believe she told me it's in the vein of Diptyque Oyedo, but I can't remember for sure. edit: no, this is not like Oyedo. The best description is clean, dry, fresh ... that softens. This is a wide awake fragrance, good for days when you need to get stuff done.


Blogger cjblue said...

Hey, M? I'm coming over. Like right now. A dee-lish sounding main dish, homemade cobbler and to top it all off, I think you've found exactly the perfect scent to go with it all. Sounds light, herby, goes with the picture and your are a woman in harmony with your space right now.

I'm gonna make that swiss chard stuff (once I figure out what chard is and how to select it, lol) but I can tell you...I'll never make Martha Stewart's peach cobbler. Too many directions.

YUM! Lavender Herbal, huh? You've managed to whet my olfactory appetite as well. Wish I could pop off to the nearest somethingrother store and try it.


11:07 AM

Blogger clearing said...

I'm coming with Cj!

Actually was going to ask for the recipes and then you wrote them down for all of us. Thank you!!!


(you look so beautiful in your apron..)

11:15 AM

Blogger cjblue said...

So, clearing, who(m) do I have to sleep with to get a sample of LH? I can't believe how wonderful this sounds right now.

I've tried finding other ways to contact you but I don't know how, so I'm shamelessly letting you know that if I have to go much longer without trying this stuff I didn't know about till today, I'm going to explode.

I am sure we can work something out, no?

12:19 PM

Anonymous Laura said...

I was wondering when your classes were going to start! I'll be thinking about you and sending lots of good wishes for success and fun, too!

2:14 PM

Blogger Kyahgirl said...

what time were you expecting us?


2:26 PM

Blogger AP3 said...

Sadly, I am a terrible cook.

Nice picture... it threw me back to elementary school, when my nickname was "Super Lemon"!

3:12 PM

Blogger schnoodlepooh said...

That's a nice vegetarian recipe.

3:40 PM

Blogger Tan Lucy Pez said...

The luckiest thing about you is that you know that you are lucky!

So, you're making this for how many of us, and of course, you're expecting ME, right?

4:03 PM

Blogger Bela said...

That peach cobbler sounds wonderful. I'm salivating (and it's 3.05am, LOL!). I can't eat pasta or beans so I won't touch the other dish, but, then, there'll be more for the others.

Maybe you can pass on some of your good luck, M: the caretaker announced this morning that there seems to be a leak in my bathroom. The plumber's coming tomorrow, G-d knows what he's going to find. I'm dreading it. :-(

7:07 PM

Blogger still life said...

The pasta with chard sounds absolutely amazing. I'm going to pass the recipe over to Stacie so that we can make it one evening when she is over.
I could be mistaken, but it sounds to me as if maybe you are embracing Fall. First there was the posting showing the lunchbox with matching thermos in plaid no less, and now there are comfort food recipes, talk of projects and school, yes it is official, Fall has come in early in your household.

7:13 AM

Blogger Atreau said...

Oh M everything sounds so divine!

8:02 AM

Blogger Urban Chick said...

were you pretending not to hear my knocks on your door at 3am? even after i endured a long haul flight and abandoned the chicklets especially...


[really THAT MUCH BUTTER in the peach cobbler? yikes..]

5:04 AM


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