This wasn't really planned; it was just a "what have I got in the fridge?" day that happened to come out exceptionally well.Sweet Potatoes
These were simple. Three small white sweet potatoes, sliced into quarter-inch slices, put into a glass bowl with a chunk of butter on top of the potatoes and a plate on top of the bowl to hold the steam in. Microwaved for 5 minutes, until potatoes are soft, and tossed with the butter. And that's all.Red Chard
I had a bunch of chard that had been forgotten from the farmshare that shares pickup space with our community-supported-fishing share
, which needed to be cooked. Also we had some red onions, so I chopped up a couple of small ones of those and sauteed them while prepping the chard. Then I put in the chard stems, also chopped, and cooked those for a while.
One of the things that I find less than ideal about the chard I've been cooking (especially red chard) is that it has a little bit of bitter flavor that needs something to offset it, and using vinegar seems too sour. So, I tried experimenting with sweet, and put in a tablespoon or so of dried currants. I also put in a third of a cup or so of red wine, and cooked that down.
The other thing that I find often happens with chard, and with other greens that I saute with onions, is that they don't end up mixing very well. This time, I chopped the green parts of the chard a little smaller than usual, and then I tried the same trick I use to make roux-based sauces not go lumpy: I put in a small handful of the greens, mixed them in well, added some more, mixed, and repeated -- so that I wasn't trying to mix it all at once.
Both experiments turned out to work beautifully: The dish was quite evenly mixed, and the sweetness was exactly what it needed.Ridgeback Shrimp
These were this week's delivery from the fish share, and like the chard, were needing to be cooked very soon. A ridgeback shrimp is notably reddish -- they color the rinse water and dry-towels red, though it's just on the surface, not in the meat -- and also notably sweet. These were also relatively large -- 2 inches or so. And in the shells; most of the prep time for all of dinner was de-shelling the shrimp.
To cook these, I melted some butter in a pan, and put in the shrimp once it was all melted and bubbling. When the shrimp were done, I took them out, put a third of a cup of white wine and juice of half a lime in the pan, and cooked it down to a reduced sauce to spoon over the shrimp. It came out just as tasty as I was hoping it would.