Archive for February, 2010

Get Stoked for Spring

February 23, 2010

Here is some inspiration for DIY garden projects from Apartment Therapy:

I am loving the gutter lettuce set up, can’t wait to start planting!


Wild Man!

February 22, 2010

Something to Talk About…

February 18, 2010

NYC: Two recent articles on local eating…

Tuesday Tulips

February 16, 2010

HUMBOLDT STREET, Brooklyn: If you did not get flowers from your Valentine on Sunday, go buy some tulips. They are cheap and cheerful.

The simplicity of a bunch of bodega bought tulips gives a clean, crisp feeling to any space no matter what. It helps a lot if the surface you choose to display them on is free of clutter. Fresh flowers always give me an excuse to clear off my kitchen table or counter.

Select the most tightly closed buds to get your moneys worth. Trim the ends under running water and peel off any dented or rumpled looking leaves. Vases are easy. Clean out and de-label a glass jelly or pickle jar you would have ordinarily recycled. Or Ball canning jars make excellent vases. Change the water everyday.

Happy Heart Day

February 15, 2010

HUMBOLDT STREET, Brooklyn: 5:25 pm on February 14, 2010. and it’s not dark yet, that’s really nice. just saying.

What I Made For Dinner, Cont.

February 8, 2010

HUMBOLDT STREET, Brooklyn: This is a pretty good “local” meal for the this time of the year. Mushrooms and squash are being sold in all area farmers’ markets, the spinach is locally grown in greenhouses and even cold frames right now, also at farmers’ markets.

Brad and I got turned on to oyster mushrooms at Roberta’s. I am pretty sure their recipe is very simple, the following is my best attempt at recreating the delicacy, makes one large serving, could be an appetizer for two:

Oyster Mushrooms, remember they cook down a lot, see photos.

Earth Balance Light (or other vegan butter)

Salt & Pepper

Heat a large fry pan to medium heat with butter. Add shrooms, pepper generously, salt to taste. After about 6 minutes, turn heat up to high and use a spatula to spread out the mushrooms and shuffle them about a bit to get the edges crispy. That’s about it.

Here is the awesome part. Anyone, even city dwellers, can grow mushrooms. In your house. It seems really intense. I haven’t done it, to be honest, it kinda weirded me out when I first discovered the process. I figured everyone should be trying NOT to have fungus growing in their apartments. But now that I am getting deeper and deeper into growing food, I have been considering it as a viable experiment. Maybe someday soon I will invest.

In the test tubes right now, however, pomegranate and mango plants from seed. Stay tuned for either ground breaking success or heartbreaking failure! At this point, only the soil knows…

What I Made For Dinner

February 7, 2010

HUMBOLDT ST, Brooklyn: One of my favorite cook books is Williams-Sonoma’s VEGETABLE. I made the roasted squash the other night and it was divine. The following is a variation on the recipe, here is what you will need:

1 baking pumpkin, or other orange fleshed winter squash

4 cloves garlic, chopped

1 teaspoon cooking wine, or balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/2 teaspoon sugar

1/4 teaspoon chile powder

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme


salt & pepper

Preheat oven to 350. Cut the squash into wedges, scooping out seeds and fibers.

Mix together garlic chunks, oil, wine, chile powder, and thyme. Brush onto the squash arranged in baking pan, and salt and pepper to taste.

Cover tightly with aluminum foil and bake about 40 minutes or until tender (depends on thickness of squash.) Uncover and raise temp to 400, flip the quarters face down.

Roast 10 – 15 minutes until browned in places, and very tender. Serve immediately.

Baking Away the Winter

February 4, 2010

HUMBOLDT STREET, Brooklyn: I’m sorry locavores. This recipe is not for you. Not here, not now. But I was craving the tropics, and my apartment was cold, so I turned the oven on and made this coconut cake with mango sauce. It was delicious. It was vegan. It didn’t last long. Here is an epic photograph of what you will need:


2-1/2 tablespoons egg replacer

3/4 cup soy milk

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 banana

1/2 cup smart balance light (vegan butter)

1 cup white flour (or light spelt if you are feeling like a hippie)

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/4 cup coconut milk


1 ripe mango, cut into cubes

1 cup coconut milk

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup dried coconut flakes (unsweetened)

1. Grease 9″ pan (I do not own a cake pan, yikes!) preheat oven to 350.

2. Mix dry egg replacer & soy milk and beat until frothy, set aside for later.

3. In another bowl mash the banana, beat in the sugar, butter, coconut milk. Mix well.

4. Add flour and baking powder.

5. Fold in the egg replacer and soy milk mixture, don’t over mix, could be executed with a spoon. Sprinkle with coconut flakes before you put into oven.

6. Bake at 350, 30 minutes, or until knife comes out clean. So easy!

The Sauce on the other hand, I had a bit of trouble with. I don’t think my mango was ripe enough. And butchering one of those s-o-bs is annoying. If you don’t know what to do with a mango, go here:

Place all sauce ingredients in a food processor and work it until it’s smooth. Add sugar according to your taste. Heat the mixture in a sauce pan, add a pinch of cornstarch if it is coming out watery. To serve, cut cake and pour the warm mango sauce over top and sprinkle with coconut. Just like heaven. See what I mean about my mango, though? Looks a little chunk vs. liquid, or something.

Probably could have used more cornstarch to make it a bit more saucy.