How can summer be half over already? My kids return to school in less than a month, and I haven’t even cracked the spine of a single novel while laying out at the beach. Who am I kidding? I don’t read novels—I just scour the Internet for cool links to share on Forky Friday. Oh, and cookbooks. I’m all about those.
In this week’s edition: vegetables, meat, and Ryan Gosling—all the key ingredients for a perfect weekend.
A Whole30 August
Are you embarking on a Whole30 on August 1st? Hooray! Although it might seem like a daunting task, eating delicious, nutrient-dense food for a month is 100% doable. And besides, you owe it to yourself to eat nourishing food, right?
Back Away Slowly From The Bagged Lettuce
Okay, I’ve definitely bought more than my fair share of bagged, pre-washed salad greens. It can be super convenient, especially when I’m pressed for time or just too lazy to do any vegetable prep. But after reading The Truth About Bagged Lettuce in Mother Jones, I think I’ll just spend a few extra minutes bonding with my salad spinner and a fresh head of lettuce.
What The %$*@ Is In My CSA Box?
Thankfully, I don’t often have to resort to bagged lettuce. I’ve been a member of my vegetable CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) for almost ten years, so I’m treated to wonderfully farm-fresh lettuce and other greens every week.
I love my CSA and the fantastic assortment of veggies that come in my weekly box, but I still occasionally get a few items that leave me wondering how I’m going to prepare them. Lucky for me, Buzzfeed has a great post on 31 Things To Do With Confusing Vegetables.
While I’m on the subject of CSAs, I truly believe that farm-fresh vegetables should be available to everyone, especially growing kids. Steve Liberati, the founder of Steve’s Paleo Goods, has just piloted a Farm-to-Athelete program that offers bushels of fresh produce to youths participating in Steve’s Club Camden. You can learn more about this great program by clicking here, and you can donate by clicking here.
Ryan Gosling: More Than A Meme
This Canadian’s not just a brooding hearthrob and meme magnet. Read his op/ed letter to the Globe and Mail which calls for the elimination of gestation crates for pigs, and try not to swoon.
One of my summer goals is to improve my grilling skills and learn how to properly smoke meats. It can’t be that hard, right? To get myself up to speed, I’ve been reading a bunch of great tutorials on Food52. My two faves are Update Your Kebabs and How to Grill Any Steak in 5 Steps. (Aaaaaand I just might have to buy a Big Green Egg to practice.)
I’m thinking of beefing up (see what I did there?) my collection of vintage cookbooks, so this gallery of meaty cookbooks from days gone by definitely caught my eye. Which one’s your favorite?
Who Wants Italian?
It seems like every week, a review copy for a new Paleo cookbook appears on my doorstep. I’m certainly not complaining—I love cookbooks and the quality of these tomes just keeps getting better and better. My only concerns? (A) I’m running out of shelf space, and (B) my insane schedule is keeping me from giving these books the attention they deserve. (Quick—somebody call a waaaahmbulance!)
A couple of weeks ago, I received Sarah Fragoso’s newest cookbook, Everyday Paleo Around the World: Italian Cuisine. I’ve been flipping through it in my spare moments and putting a sticky note on each recipe I want to try. But there was one dish in particular that I was itching to make as soon as my work week ended.
I followed Sarah’s recipe exactly—but since I was rushed for time, I cooked the Ossobuco under high pressure in my pressure cooker for 40 minutes rather than in a Dutch oven or stockpot.
I made a quick gremolata…
…seared off some seasoned veal shanks…
…and cooked them in a rich, umami-rich braising liquid…
…flavored with fragrant fresh herbs.
The recipe was incredibly easy and didn’t call for any exotic ingredients. No special trip to the store needed!
How’d it taste?
In a word: awesome. It was so delicious that even the pickiest eater in our house (Lil-O) gobbled up his bowl of braised beef shanks.
It’s no secret that I’m a superfan of Sarah’s blog and books; she’s one of my Paleo girl-power role models. What makes her books some of my favorites are her inspiring personal story and the simple, fool-proof, always-delicious recipes that appeal to everyone in the family. Her new tome is both a travelogue and authentic Italian cookbook, packed with recipes inspired by the many talented chefs she encountered on her travels. After reading it, I immediately wanted to go back to Italy and eat my way around the boot with my family.
The moral of the story: this book rocks.
Ciao for now!1