Thursday, February 28, 2013

Purple Plum Torte

Let's call this one Miss Popular. In the introduction to the recipe, Ms. Hesser notes that this recipe is both the most often published and the most requested recipe in the Times archives. Most. Requested. Recipe. In. The. Times. Archives. That this was even calculated is fantastic alone.

The introduction to this recipe is two times as long as the recipe itself, and it speaks directly to its simplicity (and historical significance). The batter is simple (flour, eggs, sugar, butter), which affords much opportunity to improvise once you've made the standard recipe. Toy with the sugar amounts, use different fruits, swap the cinnamon for cardamom, etc. I've made it with blueberries, as suggested in the book, with equal success. But I do prefer the plums.

Miss Popular delivers. Besides her ability to store well in freezer, the jammy pockets of plum that land in every other forkful are delightful. Make sure your plums are ripe enough that you don't have to tear out the pits. Not only is that no fun, they'll be too tart.

This one is a delight. Have fun.

Recipe on page 763

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Avocado and Beet Salad with Citrus Vinaigrette

These fat wedges of avocado and beet, slicked with their snappy, sweet vinaigrette, could make me swoon for days. We don't have enough ways to consume beets around here, being beet people, and this happily filled the gap. The fullness of the avocado cuts into the beet's sweetness, and the citrus zest in the vinaigrette makes the marriage of beet and avocado even more happy.

As do many salads, this goes great with a roast chicken for dinner, or a toasted piece of whole grain bread for lunch.

Recipe on page 193