kthread cooks: whatever provençal

This recipe is largely in service of my favorite new technique for peeling tomatoes: with a blowtorch.

The tip comes from a book I bought at Maker Faire called Chef’s Secrets, and Chef J. Bryce Whittlesey (who once worked at Keswick Hall near Charlottesville) instructs the reader that the blowtorch option prevents the tomato from becoming waterlogged by boiling the skin off. And presents an opportunity to play with fire.

The great joy of this dish (which can be made with whatever protein you like) is the way the simmering sauce fills the house with the fragrance of tomatoes, olives, and sunshine; afterwards, consider pouring another glass of wine and opening Julia Child’s marvelous My Life in France.

Recipe: [for one] Heat 1 tbsp olive oil in a pan, season the protein and flour it (knocking off excess), place in pan, cook 3-4 minutes over med-high, turn and cook 3-4 minutes more. Remove, set aside on plate. Pour 1/2 cup of dry white wine into pan, stirring to loosen browned bits, 2-3 min. Add a chopped garlic clove, bit of anchovy paste (if no fish allergies/concerns). Add 2 medium skinned tomatoes, chopped and 1/4 cup of chopped black olives (I like Niçoise); simmer 8-10 min. Season, add 1 tbsp butter, stir. Plate protein and pour sauce on top. Garnish with basil if possible.

listening recommendation: troubadour folk with tambourines

reading recommendation: My Life in France, Julia Child

whatever provençal wallpaper on Flickr

drink pairing: a dry white (e.g. Sauvignon Blanc from the Cassis AOC)

salt recommendation: Sel Gris

How do you peel tomatoes?

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