Monday, August 22, 2011

CSA: Week 16

I am excited about this week's haul, especially after how delicious the sangria watermelon was last week.
  • Yellow patty pan squash
  • Italian eggplant
  • Garlic
  • Sungold cherry tomatoes swapped for an assortment of cherry tomatoes
  • Yellow onions
  • Delicata squash
  • Curly parsley
  • Sweet corn swapped for seedless yellow watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Sangria watermelon
  • Apples

Monday, August 15, 2011

CSA: Week 15

This week's theme seems to be tomatoes, as well as a few repeats from the last few weeks (e.g., eggplant, bell peppers, squash).
  • Red tomatoes (swapped for gold grape tomatoes)
  • Sungold cherry tomatoes
  • Garlic
  • Yellow straightneck squash
  • Green bell peppers
  • Italian eggplant
  • Yellow wax beans
  • Roma tomatoes
  • Heirloom cantaloupe
  • Sangria watermelon
Mercifully, this week's watermelon was a bit smaller, so it is a bit easier to cart around.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Three More Reviews

I am way behind the ball, but I wanted to mention three restaurants that I ate at with a friend over the course of three days in mid-July, mainly because they are all recommended:

Barbuzzo: Barbuzzo has been on my list to try for awhile.  Located in that stretch of 13th Street that is so replete with good eateries, Barbuzzo serves Mediterranean small plates, with a definite emphasis on Italian cuisine.  We tried a variety of dishes, including the vegetable board (which was very good, but not as good as Osteria's vegetable antipasto, see below) and their coniglio pizza, which has rabbit-hazelnut sausage on it.  It did not quite live up to some of the hype I had heard, but the pizza was very, very good, and I think with another go at the menu, I could probably find a combination of dishes that would really sing to me.

Fond: Fond is one of these Passyunk Avenue BYOBs that seems so popular in Philadelphia these days.  And when it comes to Fond, there is a good reason for this.  They have a pretty small menu, and when we were there they offered only a couple of specials, but the result are dishes cooked to perfection.  We enjoyed the veal sweetbreads and the hiramasu crudo, but the highlight was definitely the main course.  My friend ordered the salmon, but she could not stop raving about the house-made fettucine, which tasted like pure buttery goodness.  I ordered the swordfish, which was quite honestly the best rendition of swordfish I have ever had.  Fond is definitely top ten material in this city, and could push into my top five.

Osteria: This is the third time I have been to Osteria, and the second time I have had something other than its signature pizzas.  Every time I have been, however, I have had the seasonal vegetable antipasto, and it is definitely a must have.  Fresh, colorful, simple, and just downright delicious.  The grilled pork belly, served with melon balls and mint, is also excellent.  The pasta changes from time to time, but this time I enjoyed ravioli with peaches and guanciale.  It was a small portion, but perfectly delicious, and left plenty of room for a killer white chocolate lavender mousse with blackberries.  Osteria has cemented itself as one of my favorite restaurants in Philadelphia, and is definitely in my top ten, and another worthy challenger for top five.

In short: Osteria and Fond are must-trys, and Barbuzzo is certainly worthy of much (but not all) of its buzz.

Monday, August 8, 2011

CSA: Week 14

The assault of watermelons continues!  Actually, I am pretty happy about this -- I like watermelon, and having local, in-season watermelon is really nice, but it is murder to carry these things around.  I need to (a) get ripped and (b) buy a collapsible cart or something.  Anyways, this week had some more of the recent standbys:
  • Sweet corn
  • Italian eggplant
  • Cherry tomatoes
  • Yellow straightneck squash
  • Green bell peppers
  • Romaine lettuce (given away)
  • Butterhead lettuce (given away)
  • Heirloom golden midget watermelon
  • Red seedless watermelon
  • Peaches
 I am really excited to crack open the heirloom watermelon -- it is small, yellow on the outside, and apparently pink-to-red on the inside.  Maybe I should try making some more exotic watermelon dishes this week?  Two that really inspire me: the sorbetto di cocomero at Gelateria Perchè No! in Florence, and the watermelon gazpacho at Distrito.

Monday, August 1, 2011

CSA: Week 13

I did a pretty good number on my CSA last week: Bush Baby zucchinis in a Thai yellow curry, shredded, sauteed, and combined with spaghetti; a spicy stir fry with onions, heirloom carrots, and green peppers; a Thai sour curry with okra; cantaloupe and Surryano cured ham (my Americano version of prosciutto e melone); fruit smoothies; and my favorite, watermelon juice.

This week will be quite the opposite, however, as I am away for several days.  Too bad, too, since the haul is pretty good this week:
  • Sweet corn (given away)
  • Cherry tomatoes (given away)
  • Green bell peppers (given away)
  • Potatoes (given away)
  • Red tomatoes swapped for Dragon Tongue beans
  • Japanese Italian eggplant
  • Jalapeno peppers
  • Canary melon
  • Peaches
I kept the few things that I really wanted to try and I thought would last until the weekend, and the rest I gave to a friend so they would not go to waste.