Lighten up

Dinner:  February 19, 2009

I am officially sick of Winter. I’ve been trying to be a good sport, keep a positive attitude, enjoy the license to eat rich, rib-sticking food, but darn it, I’m so over it. I’m sick of cold hands, perpetual sniffles, and racking my brain to come up with new and creative ways of cooking root vegetables.

So I can’t tell you how nice it was to see fresh little green things around the market last Saturday. I just about burst into song when we got to the table at Ledge Ends Produce and saw not just beautiful microgreens and mesclun, but radishes, bundles of tiny fresh herbs, and sorrel – tiny young leaves, which I knew would be just perfect in our Valentine’s Day salad course. I’ve been plucking random left-over leaves from the bag in the days since and eating them unadorned, but I wanted to find a better way of using the remainder.

We had a piece of Arctic Char in the freezer, and fish is always a good bet for a light and quick weeknight dinner, so I decided to use the rest of that pretty sorrel in a sauce for the fish. I put the leaves in the food processor with a bit of salt and Meyer lemon juice, then whizzed it until smooth, drizzling in a bit of olive oil. The sauce was a little thinner than I wanted, so I added a dollop of plain yogurt from Narragansett Creamery and pulsed the mixture again. It was just the thing to give the sauce a bit more body while keeping it light, and the bright, tangy flavors were a great counterpoint to the silky fish.

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11 thoughts on “Lighten up

  1. Camille says:

    How delicious…can I assume correctly that the starch side is your always mouthwatering lemon risotto?? Sorry to hear you’re finding it hard to escape those winter blues! Your ever inspiring posts of your dinners, along with the gorgeous photos have often made my dinner time woes less…thank you!!! I’ll telepathically send some of our Vancouver spring-like weather your way! You know that by my saying this, I’ve just jinxed what we’ve enjoyed this past week…hee hee!?

  2. Trying to keep a positive outlook as well. Nevertheless, I love hearty winter stuff like kale, rabe, root veggies, spicy stews and soups, etc. We Koreans are a hungry people – we’ll eat anything! LOL!

    I’m with you, though – cold, dry, cracking hands and feet are getting pretty old. NYC last weekend was a nice injection of energy.

    Hello, Spring – any day now! Until then, I enjoy LN’sD!

  3. Jennifer Hess says:

    Camille – good eye! It’s Meyer lemon risotto, but with a bit of shaved, lightly sauteed fennel added (again, using up leftover odds and ends from the crisper).

    Mary – Thank you!

    alice – Oh, don’t get me wrong, I love those things too, but I do get a bit bored around this time of year. I’m trying to find ways to mix things up a bit. 😀

  4. Jen,
    I know what you mean about being sick of winter.
    I am waiting for that tan to come back!
    I went to the Union Square Market last week and the only vegetable that they had were potatoes, onions and celery root. Enough already.

    I need to start thinking salads, fish, vegetables and stop eating all these fabulous stews and pastas (and let’s not forget all the baking I do in the winter!).

  5. Oh my gosh, radishes! I JUST found out you can cook the greens, and I’m pumped. Crunchy peppery little gems AND a yummy bitter green? Sold!

  6. Jennifer Hess says:

    Thanks, everyone – here’s to being closer to April than we are to December. 😀

    Lydia – I am truly amazed at what the FFRI folks have done in Pawtucket. The space is amazing, and we truly look forward to the market every week.

    Marie – You’re naughty. I laughed my behind off at your comment. 😉

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