Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Sexy Tomatoes, Tantalizing Tarts, Sopping Wet Banana Bread.... And more.

Oh my, my, my...... it has really been quite a day. I got a new camera last night and I just can't stop. I took pictures of myself, I took pictures of tomatoes, I took pictures of a tart I made (WOW!), I took pictures if 4 new mixers I got in the mail today, I took pictures of the crust of the tart my husband didn't eat (gasp!), and on and on and on.... So... here they all are. My little exhibit for today.... Recipes at the end...

Here are two of the four "girls" I got in the mail today. The mixer on the left is an old Sunbeam Mixmaster, circa 1950's and the sweetie pie on the right is a
vintage yellow KitchenAid 4C... She had the original glass bowl, but it was broken in shipping. I was very sad about that.... I got another vintage KitchenAid in the mail today too... She is white and also had the original glass bowl..... but it too was broken during shipping. I will have to find original glass bowl to go with them now.... something else to hunt.

Now... I have been nursing a sourdough starter for about a month now... I was finally starting to feel comfortable with him living in the fridge when my sister came in from getting a bottled water and told me the crock I had the starter in
was broken and all the "goo" was running out the bottom. GREAT. Sure enough I go tromping out there (we have a spare fridge in the garage....) and she's right... the bottom is broken and the goo is running out the bottom. I grab the crock and run inside with it and assess the situation.... where am I going to put him? I have a displaced sourdough starter on my hands here....Where is he going to live? For the time being he is in a glass mixing bowl with saran wrap on the top.... I am going to have to find him a suitable home tomorrow... poor thing. I don't have any idea why all of the sudden the crock broke. Any ideas?

The Tart and the Tomatoes.

My friend Heather gave me some little green and yellow tomatoes. I bought the red ones from a little stand up the road called Fowlers. When they have fresh tomatoes they take the white bed sheet off the sign and everyone flocks there... when they run out of tomatoes they put the sheet back on the sign... I happend to be by there the other day the the sheet was off... nice. Rows and rows of gorgeous tomatoes. I bought a couple of pounds and here they are.

I decided today was the day to conquer the tart. Crust and all.... I started with a Nigella recipe for savory tart dough. Really easy dough recipe and it all came together just like she said it would. I could see the lovely butter "marbling" in the dough and it was slightly sticky and easy to work with. Okay... so far so good... I formed it in the tart tin and made a really nice fresh corn and vidalia onion mix to go in the tart. I topped that all off with my lovely fresh tomatoes and into the oven it went for about an hour. I did cook the tart pastry a bit before filling it... 350 for about 20 minutes.

This was REALLY good... very summery and fresh. Uncomplicated. Clean. Nice... I loved it.. The crust was a huge success and tasted fabulous. It even had "flake" to it... God, I am so proud. I have made homemade tart pastry from scratch. I can say that now... hehe! I mean, look at that crust would you! See the flake??

The filling was sooooo very good with the sweetness of the vidalia and the fresh corn. I mixed in a bit of Mexican table cream, Cheddar cheese and one egg to give it a custard like quality.... Delicious.

There I am... Grating cheese on top of the tart..... Working hard.

Okay... and last but not least the dessert for the day. Banana Bread with Rum Soaked Raisins and Chocolate Chips..... all low fat of course. Man oh man... this is such a delicious banana bread recipe. Another one of Nigella's. That girl is some kind of good... and so is this bread. I have made this one before minus the chocolate chips but I was feeling chipper and figured, what the hell... go on.. throw some chocolate chips in the batter... and I am glad I did. This is a VERY moist bread.. .. but I like it that way. I will take mine out a few minutes early so it still has a bit of goo in the middle... Almost undone.. but not quite. And it smells DEVINE... really really good. I think that is the best smell in the kitchen... Banana bread...

Banana Bread Nigella Lawson

  • 1/2 cup or more raisins
  • 3 oz (6 TBS) bourbon or rum
  • 1 cup plus 2 TBS all purpose flour
  • 2 tea baking powder
  • 1/2 tea baking soda
  • 1/2 tea salt
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter (1 stick or 4 oz)
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 large eggs
  • Very ripe bananas, mashed about 3 to 4
  • 1/4 cup chopped walnuts (I always use more)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

An hour or more before you want to make this, put 1/2 cup (or more if you like it, and I do) raisins and the bourbon or rum in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove from heat, cover, and let plump for an hour or more. Drain.

When you are ready to get on with the rest, preheat oven to 325 F. Butter and flour loaf pan.
Put flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt in a small bowl and mix to combine.Melt the butter in a large bowl. Add the sugar and beat until blended. Beat in the eggs one at a time, then the mashed bananas.Then stir in the walnuts, drained raisins, and vanilla.

Add flour mixture 1/3 at a time to combine. Scrape into the loaf pan and bake in the middle of the oven for 1 to 1 1/4 hours, till it tests clean(ish).
Cool the pan on a rack and slice to serve.

* Again, I added a cup or so of chocolate chips, more walnuts and did not drain the rum off the raisins... why in god's name would I want to pour perfectly good rum down the drain??

Comments on "Sexy Tomatoes, Tantalizing Tarts, Sopping Wet Banana Bread.... And more."


Anonymous doggerham said ... (July 28, 2005 8:45 AM) : 

Will you share that Nigella crust recipe, please? I STILL can't get into the CLBB to see if it is already there, so please forgive me if you've already done so.



Blogger Chan said ... (July 28, 2005 9:13 AM) : 

Hi Amy! I can't get into CLBB either... I guess it is down. I will post the crust recipe tonight along with the sweet version.
Cheers! Chan


Anonymous jtoepfert100 said ... (July 28, 2005 10:21 AM) : 

Hey, Chan - I've been meaning to make the Nigella Banana Bread for some time now. I'm with you on the rum! Your mixers are so cute - what in the world do you do with all of them? Boy, do I wish I could get tomatoes like that here. Really just posting b/c I can't access the board either. Just wanted to say Hi!


Blogger Chan said ... (July 28, 2005 12:25 PM) : 

Hey Jen! I have all this space above my cabinets and I put all the mixers up there... It looks so cute! I wonder what is up with the boards.. weird. Do make that banana bread... god it is sooooo good! I let my bananas get almost rotten.. I mean the peeling is all black.. I think that makes the banana flavor come out more.. and the rum sets it off too. This time I used Captin Morgan's Pineapple Rum.. so good!!


Anonymous Anonymous said ... (July 28, 2005 1:40 PM) : 

Hi Chan, I love your blog! I learned about it on the CLBB. I too wanted to ask you to share that Nigella tart crust recipe. But would you mind also sharing the entire tart recipe? The tomatoes, corn, and vidalia onion sound divine!



Blogger Cate said ... (July 29, 2005 5:19 AM) : 

Hey Ruby. I gave you a shout-out on my blog last night. Love your new mixers! Do you actually use them or are they for visual goodness only?


Blogger violet said ... (July 30, 2005 10:08 AM) : 

that IS a beautiful flake.
ill have to definately try that banana bread recipe. looks lovely.


Blogger Chan said ... (July 30, 2005 10:42 AM) : 

violet.. you have to make that banana bread... it is so indulgent. and I know.. how can a simple little quick bread be so indulgent... but it is!! and make sure you put those chocolate chips in... devine!!
cheers and thanks for reading my little blog!!! :)


Anonymous joey said ... (August 04, 2005 10:28 AM) : 

Hi Chan! I envy you your vintage mixers! :-)


Blogger Randi said ... (August 13, 2005 8:52 PM) : 

love those mixers. do you use them or are they just for show? Im looking for the perfect bananna bed recipe, Im going to try that one.


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