Sunday, June 3, 2012

Tomatoes with Vanilla and Mint

Tomatoes with Vanilla and Mint
{I made this a few weeks ago when peaches were in season, too.  I 'm waiting for my firswt watermelon to make this dish again for a dessert}
Softly perfumed with vanilla bean, this tomato and mint salad is so simple and perfect that you might have stumbled upon it yourself on a night with a sparse pantry and creative inspiration using ingredients you plucked from your pantry and backyard. Now you don't have to wait for that flash of brilliance to strike.

I’ve been picking tomatoes for the last few weeks on my regular Tuesday visits to Crooked Sky. I always hand my two children each a tomato to eat on the way back to the car since we’re always hot and thirsty.  A sweet snack of a perfect tomato, always bring me back to life.  

Yellow tomato pulp dripped all down the front of my daughter's shirt as she bit into the flesh and sucked on the juice.  

Yes, I know better than to just hand my 2 year old a tomato.  Despite my better judgement, I hope she cements that tomato into memory of what a pleasure it is to eat a just-picked summer tomato with sweat dripping down your cheek and fine layer of dust covering your body from tromping between the rows for the best one.

We took a few extra home and made the recipe I've been thinking about for months since I first spotted it.

It could easy pass for dessert, but we loved it as a first course.  With a wedge of brie and baguette, it could even pass for dinner.

Tomatoes and Peaches with Vanilla Bean Olive OIl and Mint
inspired by Not Without Salt’s recipe, which was inspired by The Walrus and the Carpenter menu item

tomatoes, the sweetest and most flavorful you can find, sliced thick, about a ½ pound
peaches, the ones that smell sweet and like flowers, sliced into wedges, about a 1/2 pound
vanilla bean, or ½ teaspoon of vanilla bean paste
olive oil, extra virgin, best quality, ¼ cup
fresh mint, a good handful
sea salt, to taste

If you have a fresh vanilla bean, slice it lengthwise down the middle and with the tip of your knife, slide it along both sides of the bean. In a small bowl, combine the olive oil and the vanilla bean seeds (or the vanilla bean paste).

Arrange the sliced tomatoes and peaches however you would like on a nice platter. Shingled is pretty, or just scatter willy nilly since it’s your house and you can do what you want.

Top the tomatoes and peaches with a Jackson Pollack style stream of the olive oil and season evenly and lightly with sea salt.  Finish with a shower of mint leaves.  It would be lovely to serve this simple dish with your good silver. I think it makes it taste better.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Home Videos

Have you noticed the trend in stylish homegrown videos (or alternative to traditional TV programming) on the blogosphere?  They're appearing everywhere, it seems, and I love it.  Finding these little delightful pieces of media is like discovering a new variety of tomato at the farmers' market.  I can't wait to take the first juicy bite.

Stumbling around the internet lately, I've found a few treasures.  I've even started trying to figure it out how to do it myself a bit with my iPhone4 and iMovie.  I'm not at the level I would like to be yet but I'm learning and trying to put myself out there.  The movie's I've made recently are featured last.

Whole Larder Love's Rohan Anderson cooks pasta at home for this online cooking series in Australia.  His back to basics style of living and photographs are really something that inspire. 
Olive Us: An American family in France who loves each other and gardens (among other things).  They've started a series of weekly "episodes." It appears they've been able to fund this endeavor and dress the kids fashionably with the help of a popular major retailer. 
Food 52's How to Make Your Own Cooking Videos: A fantastic DIY instruction for a more professional outcome. 
Apple Town Plum Jam: This one is by Daniel Grey.  It's a polished and stylish intimate peek into a family in their home making jam out of their backyard bumper.

And now, for my little movie debut, please enjoy these two short movies.  The first is on artichokes and the second, tomatoes featuring a new seed from Johnny's called Indigo Rose at Crooked Sky Farms.  They star farmer Frank Martin, my daughter and me.

If you have any new favorite videos or series' I should know about, I'd love to hear about them!

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Simplicity Parenting Virtual Book Club at Fern and Feather

The sweet and talented Alexis from Fern and Feather is having a book club discussion about the book Simplicity Parenting this week.  Simplicity Parenting is all about removing the stresses in our kids lives so that they can feel more calm, safe and secure.  Who doesn't want that for our children?

She's asked me to co-host a chapter and of course I said yes!!

Today is the discussion about the "Environment" chapter and I gave my two cents about how I've incorporated it into my home and how incredibly well the kids have responded.

Come say hello and tell share any insights you might have over at Fern and Feather.

*That's my dad and me at Torrey Pines State Beach when I was a little thing.  I can't wait to go back and visit this summer.

Related Posts with Thumbnails