It’s a snow day, so you know what’s on the menu at my house: grilled cheese and tomato soup. It’s the perfect comfort food!
I have so many memories of eating this meal as a child, especially after traipsing around in the snow on a winter day. My mother would stand at the stove and stir milk into the Campbells condensed tomato soup, expertly flipping buttery cheese sandwiches on the griddle. She had a special mug that was just for her tomato soup—because tomato soup should always be served in a mug.
We would sit at our old Formica table, slurping our soup and dipping our melty sandwiches, getting warm enough to go out for another round of sledding down the giant hill in front of our house.
But, of course, I have grown up a little. And as much as I still love the classic grilled cheese and tomato soup of my childhood, I also like to let my comfort foods grow a little.
And seriously, I dare you to find anything more delicious than goat cheese, nutmeg, fresh thyme, runny egg yolks, and balsamic vinegar. I dare you! This grown-up version of a favorite comfort food is just stunningly delicious. Thank you, snow days, for being so yummy.
Sarah and I have been making lunches together for quite some time. And yet…we hardly ever make sandwiches. A classic lunch food, completely ignored!
I completely love sandwiches (what’s not to love about food layered between slices of bread?) and yet, I struggle to feel at all original or creative when it comes to making sandwiches at home.
But as I picked four bright red tomatoes off the vine growing in my front yard, inspiration struck: caprese salad inside a sandwich! Because what could be better than tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil all together?
This sandwich was super messy. Not going to lie about that. But it was also amazingly delicious and very simple!
So last week I went to New York City with my husband to celebrate our 5-year anniversary.
Let’s just say it was a fairly glorious week. I ate my weight in delicious foods: pizzas, croissants, bagels, salmon, mac and cheese, many glasses of wine, chocolate of all kinds. And while I brought my computer along—with the best of intentions to write a post or two in between museums and Broadway shows and bike rides to Coney Island—instead I spent a lot of time kicking back and reading somewhat silly dystopian fantasy novels (guilty pleasure). It was, as I already mentioned, glorious.
I’ve been having kind of a hard time cramming myself back into reality. The doing dishes and the folding laundry and the weeding. The eating of things that are not slices of pizza the size of my entire head.
So I thought I would start slow here. I thought I would ease back into the kitchen with something incredibly healthy (because I would like to fit into my clothes) and pretty simple, something that makes a great lunch day after day and helps me to feel more like myself (and less like an overstuffed lobster).
That’s right. The lentil sandwich. Don’t turn up your nose at this! Listen, it may not sound intuitive (not like, say, cake truffles), but the tangy yogurt, nutty crunch, and salty cheese stirred into those lentils will please any palate! Like a lentil-y pesto on bread. Yum.
It’s Spring. And Spring is the only sane time to be grilling (because Summer…so hot!).
This year, I swore I would make sure our grill got cleaned and actually learn how to use a charcoal chimney so I could make you some delicious burgers and kebabs. But…I haven’t done it yet. I’ve been a little too busy planting tomatoes and peonies and peppers and rhubarbs.
So instead, I am making lentil burgers for Memorial Day, which you should definitely make, too, but on your stovetop (because…too soft for the grill grate). We can still have burgers! Grill be darned!
Did you know that the Kitchn is hosting a cooking challenge this month? That’s right, time to get out of that rut you’re in and try something new!
The first week was breakfast week. And I have definitely been in a breakfast rut, so…good timing! I realized that I typically eat sweet and grainy breakfasts. I hardly ever eat eggs or vegetables before noon! So when it was time to set goals for breakfasts future, that was mine: eat more veggies and eggs for breakfast.
I kind of cheated on one of the “assignments” and didn’t actually look up any new recipes to try. But, hey, I did write down a few ideas I wanted to work into the morning lineup! And the first one that made the cut was eggs florentine.
I must admit that I love runny yolks any way they come, and eggs florentine has long been one of my favorite eggy treats. It’s so rich and sumptuous! I decided to model this dish after the fancy breakfast I usually order when I go to Eggspectation, so I added in a few slices of smoked salmon and a side of blanched asparagus. You know…so I could look myself in the eye after licking my plate clean (because at least I ate some vegetables with all that buttery hollandaise…).
I guess I owe you an apology. You were right. There is a place for cucumbers in my life. Like in tzatziki. And gazpacho. And tabbouleh, which I also hated prior to this summer.
We have an uneasy friendship, don’t we, CSA share? For weeks, I’ve wanted to stop being bombarded by cucumbers and just get onto the tomatoes and corn and peppers already. But I must admit…you probably knew best. You have forced me to try new things, things I never would have considered if the top shelf of the fridge wasn’t buckling under the weight of all those cukes.
So…sorry for badmouthing you behind your back. Here’s one final cucumber recipe…take it as a peace offering.
Day 3 of working through cucumbers like they are going out of style.
Which, of course, they aren’t. Because there are still 6 of them in my fridge. Eek!
But this combination is one I will be returning to over and over, even when I am not desperate to put an end to a plague of cucumbers. Tangy, herby tzatziki sauce is so easy to make—and much healthier than I realized! It’s full of protein from Greek yogurt, vitamins from the cucumbers and herbs, and just a smidge of heart-healthy olive oil. Gotta love the Greeks!
Combined with hummus and a fistful of fresh chopped veggies, this vegetarian wrap (these only vaguely resemble proper gyros…but I like the name anyway) is nutritious and amazing. And delicious! The most important quality.
My carnivore husband has requested that I bring this meal back, and called it an excellent compromise between his culinary wishes and mine. That might sound like a mouthful, but I promise you, it was high praise!