Xavier Axelson, author and man of extordianary talent is today's guest. Xavier is not only sharing a recipe, but also a sample of his talented writing skills. Gives you an insight on why he is a columnist for a newspaper and an ezine. Thank you so much for being here today, Xavier. And I definitely need to try this recipe!!
I should confess right off the bat that I am a foodie. I love cooking, preparing, sharing, eating, and talking about food. A perfect Saturday night is me watching Nigella Lawson, and hour of The Two Fat Ladies, followed by Bitchin’ Kitchen with Nadia G. I should also confess that the following recipe is not necessarily my favorite but it is essential if anyone else finds themselves surrounded by beets during the summer months.
I once had a summer when I first started participating in a local CSA (www.localharvest.org) where I found my kitchen overwhelmed with beets…every week. At one point, it looked like I had been butchering people in my tiny kitchen, as there were red streaks on the walls and ceiling after a particularly aggressive beet-grating incident. I made borscht from Martha Stewart, I made beet chips, beet salad, a roasted beet tart with fontina and thyme (by the way that recipe has vanished, have no idea where it went…I am starting to believe I hallucinated it) and then I came across this recipe and it changed everything:
Makes about 12. From Bon Appetit, December 2004.
6 cups coarsely shredded peeled beets (about 6 medium)
3 scallions, white and light green parts, chopped
6 tablespoons all purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cumin
1 teaspoon ground coriander
3/4 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
3 large eggs, beaten to blend
Canola oil (for frying)
1. Place beets in large bowl, and press with paper towels to absorb any moisture. In another large bowl, whisk flour and next 5 ingredients. Mix in beets, scallions, then eggs.
2. Pour enough oil into large skillet to cover bottom; heat over medium heat. Working in batches, drop beet mixture by 1/4 cupfuls into skillet. Spread to 3 1/2-inch rounds. Fry until golden, 4-5 minutes per side. Transfer latkes to baking sheet.
Can be made 6 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature. Rewarm in 350°F oven until crisp, about 10 minutes.
Celery and Cilantro Relish
Makes about 2 cups.
I made this accompanying celery relish because I had all of the ingredients, and I'm glad I did. To the original recipe, I added some lemon juice and a handful of raisins. It proved a fine way to freshen up a plateful of latkes.
2 cups finely diced celery
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
3 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 teaspoon ground coriander
1/4 cup raisins
Combine all ingredients in medium bowl. Season relish with salt and pepper. Let stand at least 30 minutes. (Can be made 6 hours ahead. Cover and chill.) Makes about 2 cups.
Now I never made the relish…and looking at the picture does make me yearn for some…so please when you find yourself cornered, afraid and wondering if the beets just might when…take charge I say and make latkes!
This story contains: Oral Cowboys, Wild Horses, Gun’s on Trains, Voyeuristic Masturbation, Sugar being used in a most suspect manner and Dangerous Horse Trainers with ulterior motives…Please be careful….
Publisher: Seventh Window Publications
Blake’s eyes were deep gray, like river rock cold and appraising. This was a man who had seen a lot and wasn’t afraid to take advantage if only for his own survival.
“You bring a gun with you, Harry?”
Harry drained his beer before responding, he had been trying not to look directly at Blake, but that familiar twinge between his legs was making it harder to look away. Blake was not a bad looking guy; his eyes sparkled when he smiled, not unlike a snake Harry thought suddenly. Blake’s skin was tanned, weathered, he had worked long and hard in the sun Harry guessed, and when Blake smiled, which was often, Harry noticed the lines that formed by his gray eyes and the corners of his mouth. Harry thought of Reb and the dream then, this wasn’t Reb but Harry wasn’t sure he would ever see Reb again and he was alone.
“You alright, Harry?”
“Yeah fine, why?”
“Cuz I asked you if you brought a gun with you and you’re just staring at me like you’re mute or something.” Blake scratched his stubbly cheek and took a final swig of his beer, those gray eyes still searching Harry.
“Yeah, um, yeah I brought something with me, they took it though, guess I ain’t as clever as you.” Harry nodded towards Blake’s waist.
Blake looked down to wear his gun was secured. “You wanna see it?”