miércoles, 2 de abril de 2008

Full Bloom!

Yes, it is oficially spring and it is wonderful to see everything in full bloom in Mexico City. Together with the warm weather and ocassional showers it is time to finally finish the winter projects and start the spring ones, especially since winter in my city is almost non-existant.

For this difficult task it is always good to have the help of dear friends like my little "Dolce" :)

He is a good sport and always likes to test proof yarns, finished knitted objects and everything with fiber......the fuzzier the better! We are now trying to decide which new crochet project to start since it has been a while since I have done any. I was thinking of perhaps an easy scarf or shawl.....any suggestions?

So here is a picture of my black foulard that I renamed "Blackwidow" :)........oh, it took ages to be finished and I have already worn it. Actually while ending the ribs of this project I remembered how enjoyable crochet can be, so now I am hooked again!

Also, I have finished the body of the "Jacaranda" sweater. Yes! I am glad and now I will start the sleeves. Did you know that the name "Jacaranda" comes from a tree native from Brasil? It was brought in the XIX century to Mexico by the Matsumoto family, the best florists in my country. The tree adapted perfectly to the weather in Mexico City and it only blooms once every year, in march, by replacing all of its green leaves with lavender color flowers. Many parts of Mexico City are at this moment colored by these "Jacaranda" trees just like the sweater below.

And now to the recipes part! No desserts or cakes this time, actually a favourite recipe of mine. The classic "Pomodori Ripieni". I know two recipes but have found that this one in particular is quite good and non complicated, just in case you do not want to spend hours in the kitchen because you prefer to knit more! :)

Note: For each tomato use two tablespoons of raw arborio rice. This way you will not end up with a ton of unused rice.


8 large ripe but firm tomatoes
1/2 cup olive oil
1/3 cup minced parsley
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup raw arborio rice
1 teaspoon saffron (optional)
2 cups hot chicken consomme

Cut a slice from the top of each tomato, under the stem and scoop out the pulp carefully without breaking the shells. Reserve the tops. Strain the pulp through a sieve and reserve (you will use very little of this in the recipe). Place tomatoes side by side in a shallow baking dish with olive oil. Sprinkle each tomato with olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper in the inside.
Heat the 1/2 cup of olive oil in a pan and cook parsley and garlic for a few minutes and add raw rice -without previously soaking it in water- and cook stirring constantly 3 to five minutes. The garlic should not burn. Stir saffron into the consomme that should be hot. Add hot consomme to the rice, and lower the heat. Cover and cook for ten minutes stirring frequently to avoid the rice to stick in the pan. When the rice is "al dente" remove from heat and season with salt and pepper.
Fill 3/4 of the tomatoes with the rice and with a spoon pour just a bit of the strained pulp and cover with the cut slices. Sprinkle on top with a bit of olive oil and season with a bit more salt and pepper.
Bake in a preheated moderate oven (350oF) for no more than 30 minutes without covering. Check that the tomatoes do not break. If necessary cut down the time in the oven.
A plus: if possible use the "roast" in your oven to give the tomatoes a nice color on top. Allow them to cool down prior to serving.

Hasta Pronto.

3 comentarios:

ladyr dijo...

Hi again Marie.
I'm glad to hear you're interested in crochet again. I love knitting but in the past most of my works were crochet. At the moment I'm trying to write down patterns for my nicest things and I seem to be doing quite a good job. ;)
About the cushion, well I would say that you don't have to be particularly an expert to make it. Take a look at the instructions and see what you think. Obviously don't hesitate to ask for help if you need it.
Ciao e a presto.
Btw, we have a small Jacaranda tree growing in our front garden and everytime it blooms it leaves me speechless!

Patrizia dijo...

Another yummy recipe! Thank you Marie.
We also have Jacaranda trees here in Australia, but I didn't know they originated from Brazil. I do love the colour of the flowers, and your rose looks lovely too.

I think your sweater is going to look lovely once it's finished!
Good job with the crochet scarf too. ;)

Yes we call the Wheinachts Cacti here the Christmas Cacti because it does indeed flower around Christmas time. Do you have the one that flowers red? I have another similar one that flowers pink, so I'm sure it's the same type of plant.

Dolce looks so adorable in your latest photo - I feel like squeezing and cuddling him!!

I think it's a great idea using a sewing pattern as a basic guide making knitted garments. Even though the patterns I have are a little large (why do they make them so large??) I might take them out just to see and think about what possibilities there are.

Patrizia dijo...

Oh thank you so much Marie!

My mother says it's the best looking design in the book, but she has to say that of course - haha.