Brooklyn-based

Hello, New York.

Long story very short, we’re back. Some of the story is already out there in bits and pieces, and I’ll probably write down a fuller recount of the events of the last two weeks somewhere soon, but for now, I just felt the need to post a little something here. It seems right and appropriate – after all, Last Night’s Dinner was born in Brooklyn.

A good 95% of our stuff – furniture, clothes, kitchen and pantry supplies – are still locked up in a Providence storage facility, but we brought a few essentials to get us started in our new home. We have our trusty iron skillet, two plates, two bowls, flatware and glasses for two, my favorite chef’s knife, a small pot, mixing bowl, rasp and reamer – just enough to get us going, and sustain us until the rest of our belongings arrive. At least we hope that’s the case.

Went out for a walk. Stumbled upon a greenmarket.

Our new kitchen is smallish but modern – long and narrow, but with a big window to let in the light and air, plus a brand new fridge, stove, and dishwasher (!). And on Sunday, the day after we landed here, we headed out for supplies. The Flatbush Food Co-Op was our destination, just a short walk away, but we were happily surprised to find that the Cortelyou Greenmarket was in full swing as well. We returned home with a bounty of local goods, and cooked our first meal in our new home that night: sauteed blackfish, zucchini and squash blossoms with lots of fresh young garlic, thyme and lemon, paired with a bottle of Wolffer Estate rose. To my delight, the baby ate a little bit of everything.

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It’s so good to be back home.

Kittens and Quick Dinners

Crazy time at the office is over for the moment, but I have a new distraction… the kittens are back, and they are as adorable as ever. As you can imagine, I have spent most of my free time over the last few days hanging out in the yard watching the kittens frolic and play rather than writing about what we ate, but here’s a quick recap.

Dinner:  June 5, 2007

Tuesday night’s meal was blackfish with white beans in a fennel-herb broth, inspired by the fish dish I had at Marlow and Sons the last time we ate there.

I sliced up a fennel bulb and sautéed it in olive oil with a few smashed garlic cloves, and then added a cup each of white wine and water to the pan. I seasoned it with salt and pepper, and added a cup of chopped mixed herbs (I used a combination of fennel fronds, chives, tarragon and flat leaf parsley; sadly the chervil I planted in our garden this year died a swift death). Once the broth came to a boil I added one can of small white beans (drained and rinsed) and reduced the heat. I laid two blackfish fillets, seasoned with salt and pepper, in the pan skin side up, covered the pan, and let the fish poach until just cooked through.

It was easy as can be to put this together, and while it was not as good as the original, I was very pleased with the result.

Dinner:  June 6, 2007

Last night I put together a classic Cobb Salad, with fresh greens and grape tomatoes from the Greenmarket, lemony grilled chicken, some of Mike’s delicious bacon, ripe avocado, one of our favorite blues, and a chive-spiked vinaigrette. In my distracted state, I actually spaced on the hard boiled eggs I was making and ruined them, but we had one left in the fridge from a batch I made earlier in the week, so dinner was saved. (Call me a perfectionist, but a Cobb isn’t a Cobb without the hard boiled egg!)

These were two light, quick dinners which I’m sure will become go-to meals for us on warm summer evenings.