If I had a second sub header for the RGB blog, it would probably be:
How to make really complicated food using over ten ingredients, three burners, two people and a very long time.
This doesn’t work very well when you’re in the middle of a remodel.
When one is without a fully functioning kitchen, one is tight on space… and when you’re tight on space, you want to be quick. While you still have access to the stovetop, you’re hard pressed to find your countertop. So you make do with a cutting board on top of an open drawer. You whisk a vinaigrette in the sink. You plate your dishes on top of a cardboard box. Your mis en place is on top of the fridge. And the second you’re finished, YOUGETTHEHELLOUT so the freshly exposed drywall powder against your newly installed kitchen skylight doesn’t become an accoutrement to your lunch.
With the race against an imagined (or not?) doom, your heart is beating swiftly by the time you reach the garden. It is only now that you can relax.
And if you’ve done it right, you’ve crafted a lunch that is mostly presented, not cooked, and orchestrated to feature the best of Coastal California Summer.
And once your heart rate slows down enough, and you have a view of the garden in all its summer glory, you can relax a little, sip your carbonated water and taste your lunch, savoring if you wish… one ingredient at a time. And for dessert: a bowl full of strawberries.
I smiled when Mr. RGBistro said it reminded him of our Provencal lunch in the tiny town of Iles-Sur-La-Sorgue:
[Come back later tonight after I’ve had a chance to upload a travel photo from 0ur trip to Provence]
Summer Market Platter
An heirloom tomato and mixed greens, tossed in a white balsamic honey and basil vinaigrette, then topped with Italian Burrata cheese and basil chiffonade. On the side: slices peaches and avocado, 7 lime-salted almonds, 4 slivers of gouda, 3 rolls of mortadella and a short stack of boiled new red potatoes.
~ Serves 2 ~
~ Ingredients ~
- 2 small red potatoes
- 1 teaspoon shallots, minced
- 1 tablespoon honey balsamic vinegar
- 3 tablespoons basil infused olive oil
- Optional: 1 small slice Meyer lemon
- 1 handful mixed greens
- 1 heirloom tomato, cut into 6 slices
- ½ ripe peach, sliced thinly
- ½ small ripe avocado, sliced thinly
- 14 almonds (mine were roasted with lime and sea salt)
- 1 ounce gouda cheese, divided into 8 slivers
- 6 slices mortadella, rolled
- 2 ounces Burrata cheese, divided
- 3 basil leaves, sliced thinly
~ Preparation ~
Preparation Time: 30 minutes
- Make potatoes: Boil in salted water until tender, about 15 minutes. Then quarter.
- Make vinaigrette: Combine shallots and balsamic vinegar into a 1-quart glass bowl. While whisking vigorously, slowly drop in a stream of olive until emulsified (well blended). Season to taste. Optional: squirt in some lemon juice if you need more acid.
- Add mixed greens to the plates. Drizzle 1 tablespoon of vinaigrette over each mound of greens. Then layer with three slices of tomato each. Then drizzle another tablespoon of vinaigrette over the slices of tomato.
- Add potatoes to the plate. Drizzle what’s left of the vinaigrette over the potatoes.
- Add all other ingredients to the plate, placing the Burrata cheese on top of the tomatoes, and the basil on top of the Burrata.
- Serve immediately.
Source: Rustic Garden Bistro