One-Ingredient Ice Cream

Image Source: TasteofHome.com

I’ve never been particularly fond of bananas. It might be the years of smoothies my dad made for my breakfast as a child, but I’m more inclined to think it’s the texture.

They’re just so… mushy.

That’s why I was blown away the first time I tried this one ingredient ice cream made entirely from bananas. It is consistency is perfect. You can fool almost anyone into thinking this soft serve was spooned right out of some gourmet packaging.

The easy non-recipe:

Peel as many ripe bananas as you need (one per serving) and slice width wise and chunky, the way they’d appear in fruit salad before I pick them out.

Space these out on a plate, cover with wax paper or a paper towel, and stick them in the freezer for an hour or two.

Blend until you have ice cream.

Sometimes I’ll double the number of ingredients and add a spoonful of peanut butter, but even without that the chill of this treat keeps it from tasting too “bananay.”

I learned this recipe through word of mouth, but have since found a number of recipes out there, including the one at www.thekitchn.com which also supplies a number of mouthwatering photographs if you’re not yet convinced.

Erin Tewes – Brooklyn.

Pete’s Quality Meat

Image Source: yelp.com

This place is an original “dive” eatery. I am not sure how long they have been in business, but from the looks of it I would say they probably opened in the 70s.

Employed at Pete’s are: Pete, Pete’s brother and a woman…that is totally bad ass for putting up with these two guys.

There are rad pictures on the wall of Pete and his epic mustache (and of horse racing).  Their menu is about as basic as it gets.  You can choose between chicken, steak, sausage, meatball and eggplant sandwiches.  Drinks are bottled water or canned Coke.  They make the sausage in house…and its out of this world.  You can even buy it raw to take home.

I went with my boyfriend; he ordered the meatball and I ordered the sausage.  They are pretty big sandwiches and they cut them in half so we split our sammies with each other.  Sausage is super crispy on the outside and has that delightful “snap” when you bite into it.  The meatballs were very tender and covered in just the right amount of marinara and parmesan.  The sausage was served with onions and peppers on top.

Pete’s location is pretty rad too.  This place is a dump but has a great deal of charm and they really know their meat.  I haven’t tasted a better sausage in my life and I can’t wait to go back and try the steak sandwich!  If you have an afternoon to kill, lunch at Pete’s and a stroll through little italy, is a great, cheap way to do it.  1742 India St (between Date and Fir) 92101

KALE PESTO

 

Image Source: tastespotting.com

February is a difficult month for seasonal produce. It’s lodged in the desolate space between the lushness of spring and the heartiness of winter. After a while even the strictest of seasonal eaters will be craving something brighter.

Snacking on something that reminds us of spring, however, isn’t as easy as running to the supermarket. There’s no question that an in-season strawberry is more flavorful and sweet than one sitting on a shelf in the middle of February. Or that the short three week season of the garlic scape isn’t worth the forty-nine weeks of waiting.

This is where a great pesto comes in. Pesto is such an easy sauce to whip up, and so versatile, that even months away from the best basil of the year you can grab some fresh greens from the farmers’ market (even if their only neighbors are squash, potatoes and hothouse apples) and have a meal just begging to be eaten al fresco.

The best recipe for pesto that I’ve found is simple: greens, garlic, nuts, olive oil and hard cheese, blended to taste. I’ve successfully skipped the cheese for vegan friends, substituting a few more nuts and some high quality sea salt, and once even left out the garlic for a picky five year old.

If you’re looking for a little more structure the following is adapted from tastespotting.com.

1 clove garlic

3 cups chopped kale

½ cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped

¼ cup grated Parmesan cheese

¾ cup extra virgin olive oil

salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Pulse garlic clove in food processor until it is chopped finely, about 30 seconds. Add kale, walnuts and Parmesan cheese and pulse until chopped.

With the food processor running on low, add olive oil in a steady stream until you get the consistency you want.

(For the record I use a funky old one speed blender and never have any problems.)

Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Toss over warm quinoa or the pasta of your choice, smear on a baguette or eat right off the spoon.

And when spring rolls around don’t forget to flex your pesto making skills on some garlic scapes.

Erin Tewes – Brooklyn.