My former nemesis, now my sweet friend.
For years, I’ve suffered from a malady.
One that I’ve shamefully hidden, glossed over and tried to ignore.
You see, I am a can-o-phobe.
There, I said it.
I am one who has never canned.
Oh sure, I’ve made jam. And I’ve made pickles. But all ones that could be easily stored in the refrigerator or freezer.
Petrified that I’d end up killing friends and family (or at least making them deathly ill), I’d never had the nerve to water process the jars to attempt to make them shelf-stable instead.
Tabbouleh — with strawberries. And you will love it.
Who put strawberries in my tabbouleh?
Food blogger Sara Forte, that’s who.
And I’m grateful that she did.
I love tabbouleh, but I don’t think I would have ever thought to substitute fresh strawberries for the usual tomatoes in it.
The recipe for “Strawberry Tabbouleh” is from her new cookbook, “The Sprouted Kitchen Bowl + Spoon” (Ten Speed Press), of which I received a review copy.
Forte of Southern California is the creator of the beautiful blog, Sprouted Kitchen, which features photos by her husband, Hugh Forte. Her recipes are all about healthful, wholesome and seasonal.
As the name implies, this book spotlights recipes that are typically served in one bowl such as “Pumpkin Pie Steel-Cut Oats,” “Herby Picnic Potato Salad,” and “Seared Scallops in Thai Broth.”
Her “Strawberry Tabbouleh” can be made with the traditional bulgur or quinoa for a gluten-free version.
Dessert — Prune-style.
Some cookbooks possess that magical gift that makes you feel as if the author is actually speaking directly to you in your very own kitchen.
“Prune” (Random House) takes a different tack. In her new cookbook of which I received a review copy, Chef Gabrielle Hamilton, owner of New York’s beloved Prune restaurant, gives you the impression that she’s talking directly to her crew in the kitchen. The delightful part is that you feel as if you’re scrunched in a corner, ease-dropping on everything that goes on there, from the prep to the service.
Possessing an MFA in fiction writing, Hamilton is a proven storyteller. Besides her singular voice, the recipes come with drip spots on the pages, as well as notes scribbled on torn pieces of tape that look as if they’re stuck to the pages.
You can be a bit of a lazy bone when making this tart. Just a little.
Have you ever rolled a vacuum cleaner over and over and over a dust ball on the carpet, knowing full well if you just bent over to pick it up with your fingers, it would be a whole lot quicker?
Oh yeah, been there, done that. I bet you have, too.
“Lazy Mary’s Lemon Tart” is made for times like that — when you’re feeling lazy. But only a tad.
After all, you still have to put the tart together and bake it.
But it does have an ingenious step-saver when it comes to making the filling. It’s all blitzed in a blender. That includes an entire Meyer lemon. Yup, rind, seeds and all. The whole kit and caboodle.
The recipe appeared in Food & Wine magazine’s January 2015 issue. The recipe is by Mary Constant, a Food52 member and winemaker of Napa’s Constant Diamond Mountain Winery, who adapted the crust from the “The Joy of Cooking.”