White On Rice

Chioggia beets occasionally lack any of the brilliant pigment that gives them their gorgeous candy-striping; the result is a pure white beet. One of the shades of rainbow carrot we planted is also a beautiful, creamy white, and since I had planned to make carrot risotto- oh, smoked duck broth in the freezer, how I love thee- combining the white roots with the white rice seemed like a neat idea. I roasted the roots with some garlic cloves and oil, then stick-blended them with milk, parmigiano, and truffle oil into a thick purée. I forgot my color theme and used a red onion, but by the time all was finished there were only a few flecks of purple left. The duck broth gave it a gorgeous smoky depth, and the roasted roots added earthy sweetness- and surprise, too, since they were invisible.

Our first eggplant got Milo really excited, so we picked it and cooked it down with a perfect plum tomato, garlic, parsley, basil, and cider vinegar to make a lovely little batch of ratatouille that I served on top of the rice with wilted beet greens and garlic on the side. In addition, our black krim tomatoes are in, so we had fat slices of those dressed only with Maldon salt. The effect of just that salt on those tomatoes is much the same as that which a particularly hot pair of undies have on a particularly fine and otherwise unadorned female body. A bottle of 2005 Latour Bourgogne was decent, but tightly wound and nowhere near as good as the Faiveley from the other night. The fact that post-”Sideways” they’ve written “Pinot Noir” on the label in big letters with “Bourgogne” smaller below it is a pretty lame sign of their intended audience.

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I'm a painter who happens to also spend a lot of time growing, making, and writing about food. I'm particularly interested in the intersection of frugal peasant cooking techniques and haute improvisation. And I have a really great personality.

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