Monday, May 28, 2012

Black and White Wednesday - Week #34

Plantains in Black and White

Blueberry Blossoms in Black and White
Blueberry Blossoms

Morels in Black and White
Dried Morels

These three monochrome images are for Sra of When My Soup Came Alive, guest hosting Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery - Week #34.  Given Sra's later start, she will be welcoming your photographs this week until Wednesday, 6:00 a.m. New York time for inclusion in her gallery.

To participate, please see my revised guidelines in this post, which also points up the hosting schedule in coming weeks.

Thanks always to everyone who contributes their fine talents.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Living Above the Store - Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery #33

Living Above the Store

It may not be the most romantic place to live, but it sure is convenient.  This small neighborhood grocery has become a favorite stop to shop when I just feel like zipping down the road, rather than make the pilgrimage to a larger market.  They carry a wide selection of global dry goods at very good prices.  I always wind up lingering about the aisles and purchasing far more than planned on the list I always carry in my head.

This is my contribution to Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery - Week #33, guest hosted by Saraswathi of Sara's Corner.

To participate, please consult these guidelines and the host line-up for the next several weeks. If you would like to guest host BWW, please send me an email: thewellseasonedcook AT yahoo DOT com

Thanks to all who have shared their talents for this fun and easy event.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Stracciatella - Italian Egg Drop Soup with Ditalini and Sun-Dried Tomatoes


When I'm in the mood for egg drop soup, I usually call in a quick order to the local Chinese restaurant.  When I'm in the mood for another sort of egg drop soup, my kitchen calls me in for a quick order of stracciatella, the Romanesque Italian broth suspended with richly textured spinach and streaks of egg.

The simplest of this home-style recipe beats greens and eggs into hot broth with a smattering of semolina and Parmesan stirred in to finish.  I've elaborated on the basics for a soup that sticks like stew with extras such as sun-dried tomatoes and ditalini, a small but shapely pasta.  The stock, infused with porcini mushrooms, olive oil, garlic, and herbs gives it a satisfyingly complex flavor that makes even a modest bowlful feel like a meal.  And it can be ready in just about the same time as waiting for the guy with the bicycle to come to deliver your pint of the usual.  
Stracciatella - Italian Egg Drop Soup (My own recipe)

Serves 4 generously.


6 cups water
4 dried porcini mushrooms
1 tablespoon salt
2 cups chopped fresh or frozen spinach (if using frozen, squeeze out water after it thaws)
2 large eggs, beaten well
2 large garlic cloves, peeled and minced
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 tablespoon dried oregano
1/2 tablespoon dried basil
2 cups al dente cooked ditalini (or other small pasta)
1/2 teaspoon dried red pepper flakes
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
4 large sun-dried tomatoes (either plain or oil packed)


Bring water to boil in large saucepan.  Add porcini mushrooms and salt. Remove from heat.  Let mushrooms color and flavor water to a broth (about 15 minutes).  Remove mushrooms and discard (they will be tough, despite soaking). Stir spinach into broth. Reheat broth to barely a simmer over low heat.  Quickly whisk in beaten eggs. Remove from heat.

In a small skillet, fry garlic in olive oil over low heat until golden.  Stir in dried oregano and basil to coat with oil.  Stir garlic-herb paste into soup.  Stir in cooked ditalini.

Ladle soup into individual bowls.  Divide and scatter dried red pepper flakes and Parmesan onto each serving.  Garnish with a sun-dried tomato.  Serve immediately. Leftover soup should be gently reheated to prevent eggs from turning tough and green. ~


This recipe is for Lisa of Lisa's Vegetarian Kitchen, hosting No Croutons Required, the monthly soup and salad event, which she created with Jacqueline of Tinned Tomatoes. May's theme is Eggs.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Al Fresco Eatery - Black and White Wednesday #32

Al Fresco Eatery

For Simona of Briciole, hosting Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery - Week #32, which will be published tomorrow, Wednesday, May 16.  Do stop by Simona's presentation of talented images contributed by photographers who appreciate the undiscovered beauty and textures of monochrome for a genre traditionally saturated with color.

Saraswathi of Sara's Corner is now welcoming your images in preparation for her BWW guest hosting of Week #33.  Here are the new guidelines for participation, including the host line-up for the next several weeks.

Thank you always for making BWW a simple yet stunning success. ~~

Monday, May 7, 2012

Leading the Way - Black and White Wednesday


Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery - Week #31 is being guest hosted by Siri of Cooking with Siri.  Siri will have the gallery online tomorrow, Wednesday, May 9, her time.  Do stop by to see what a novel and creative outlet cooking (and all other kinds of culinary photography) without color can be.

For the recent revisions to participate in this event, please consult this post.   Thank you for your patience as I transition BWW into a weekly gallery that eases my workload as well as opens the event to those who are keen to graciously guest host.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

My Legume Love Affair #46 - The Round-Up

Welcome to MLLA #46.  After so very many months, it still gives me great pleasure to present a diverse palette of legume-based dishes to tickle your palate.  Thank you all for your talented contributions.  I would be proud and well fed to feast at any of your tables.  In the interest of time, I have simply featured a photograph, title, and contributor details rather than my traditional opening lines.  Although I have not abandoned the practice, I am sure you will agree that these fine recipes truly need no introductions.

Priya of Mharo Rajasthan's Recipes is currently guest hosting MLLA #47.  I have something in mind to prepare for her.  I hope you do, too.

And congratulations to Madhu of The Melting Pot.  Madhu has won the April random drawing and will, as a U.S. resident, enjoy both cookbook and product prizes.  I will be contacting Madhu shortly to make arrangements for delivery of her winnings. ~



Mandira - Ahaar

Peashoots with Garlic and Gojiberries
Tigerfish - Teczape - An Escape to Food


Split Pea Pulao
Claire - Chez Cayenne


5simonaribollita copy

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tamarind in Black and White


My contribution to Black and White Wednesday - A Culinary Gallery - Week #30, guest hosted by dear, sweet Brii of Brigg is Home. Brii will have the gallery online tomorrow.  Do stop by and have a look at all the talented takes on food-related photography in monotone.  A peek beneath the color is often a revelation. ~