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Busy Gourmand – The Future

Garden Peppers

Pepper Varietals

On the gardening front we will be exploring the growing and uses of a variety of specialty peppers including Hungarian banana peppers, Hatch chile peppers, Serrano peppers, jalapeno peppers and Italian calabrese peppers.  Just as a hint of what is to come we found that growing the peppers on the east side of the house produced a crop that lasted all summer and allowed more time for the fruit to ripen to a bright red color.  Recipes from the pepper category will include pickling and smoking techniques, and ways to make your very own smoked paprika.  As we always state, fresh is best. Using fresh-picked peppers in all the recipes puts these foods in a whole new category of goodness.

To a lesser extent we will be exploring uses for fennel and cardoon.  Certainly two of the least prized vegetables from the garden.

Lemon Curd

Lemon Curd

To the point of distraction we are going to spend a lot of time with Meyer lemons.  We had an enormous crop last year.  In addition to the usual lemon curds, we will also be preserving the lemons for use in a number of Middle Eastern dishes and adding the fresh lemons to desserts. And of course what would the year be without home-made Meyer limoncello.

Deep Dish Pizza

Deep Dish Pizza

It would be hard to describe all the recipes that will be wending their way into the blog.  There is an obscene deep-dish pizza (more like a pie than a pizza), a variety of new desserts, and some new takes on old recipes combining partially smoking and then roasting meats.  And of course we will be using all that lovely smoked paprika to liven up just about any dish where you would normally use chili powder, cayenne pepper, or the more traditional paprika.  We will also fill you in on when to use fresh versus dried herbs in the process.

So while it has been a bit quiet on the blogging front. It is about to get very busy.