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).
Martha Stewart's Peach Cobbler
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
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.