Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Soup and Salad

I used up the last of our share this evening, just in time to start planning for tomorrow's haul. I was honored and tickled pink to be on the weekly email out for our CSA. Welcome, fellow Denison Farm Folk!

With this past week's beautiful romaine came a slug who'd been living happily in my fridge for a week. For some reason, I consider this a good sign. The fact that the food I was eating was picked recently enough that the harmless creatures on it are still content made me smile. He was removed and sent packing to my compost bin, and the romaine was given an extra good wash, thanks to my salad spinner. This salad spinner has been in my cabinet since I received it at Christmas from my mother in law. This was its first time out, and I am in love. Alton Brown says that salad spinners should be the only uni-tasker, besides can openers and fire extinguishers, allowed in the kitchen. I am inclined to agree. If nothing else, they are a blast to use. Every time I pull the string, I feel the urge let out a hearty Nomi, "Wheeeeeeee!"

I dressed the salad simply, with my favorite dressing application from Opa - olive oil, sugar and salt. Start with the olive oil, and add the sugar and salt, tasting as you go. It is perfection, especially with the crunchy romaine and radishes of spring.

The majority of the rest of our meal, shared with my amazing brother and sister in law, was not of my own making. Two of my favorite people, Cecile and Lily, brought over dinner for us Monday night - Ina Garten's Mexican Chicken Soup and a Savory Monkey Bread that was simply to die for.

Each piece of the Monkey Bread, instead of being dipped in the traditional cinnamon and sugar, was rolled in a mixture of olive oil, garlic, salt and Italian spices. Cecile started with King Arthur Flour's Herbed Monkey Bread and went from there. After the salad spinner and I are through, I shall spend some quality time with this bread. It is that good.

The meal as whole was a requested encore on my part. Lily had brought this exact meal over right after I began on the low residue diet, and it was too much seasoning for my body to handle. Last night and tonight have been a rejoicing in spice and the high fiber, crisp goodness that is fresh greens. I served it all with the refried black beans I made earlier in the week and we finished it off with Duncan Hines Brownies that David and Nomi made this morning. All in all, life felt and tasted simply wonderful.

Share and Enjoy.


  1. What kind of salad spinner is that? I love mine, but I'm going to need a second one.

  2. I love my salad spinner, love it. It's one of those fancy Pampered Chef ones with two different size baskets that my mom had bought at one time and realized she never used so she gave it to me. I use it WAY more often than I would have thought. It's also great for soaking beans of for cleaning leeks which I love but which tend to be sandy little suckers.

  3. @Dani - The brand name on my salad spinner is "Progressive." It collapses down to nothing, while remaining very sturdy and is a blast to use. You can find it here: ht-tp://

    @Kristen - I hadn't thought to use it for soaking. Dealing with the grit in leeks and certain greens is enough to make me put off cooking them for another night. Hopefully, knowing there's a handy tool will help talk my brain into the whole thing.