Saturday, June 28, 2008

FatCat cooks breakfast, etc.

I am not a morning person. When on my own, my breakfast consists of two cups of Turkish coffee and three cigarettes. And I do grind my coffee in the evening. It won't lose much aroma overnight, and I just cannot bear the sound of the coffee grinder first thing in the morning.

The FatCat™ is an especially valuable Fat Cat, because he cooks breakfast. That is, in the hour when I am completely helpless, struggling to decide whether it's worth it to attempt to focus my eyes and start going, or to sleep another hour or three, he appears, completely awake, with a cup of coffee and and a huge bowl of fruit salad. And then he's ready to make omelettes. But first we have to go to the market.

And the market is full of temptations. Like a booth where they make crepes, both sweet and savory, thin like fabric, right in front of you. We have to get one with strawberries, banana and caramelized apple. Cannot spoil our appetites, can it?

This week's first appearance on the market are figs! They come from Yolo County, where it's really hot, and are big and perfectly ripe, you are affraid to touch them, so soft they are.

I haven't tried fresh figs until I came to California, and I was never impressed with dried. So fresh figs were an unexpectedly pleasant discovery of a few years ago, and I still love them. I'll eat the first two of three whole, and then we'll have fun with the rest: bake them with goat cheese, wrap them in procuitto and grill, make pies, etc.
Other market finds this time were porcini mushrooms, garlic, scallions, free-range eggs, and heirloom tomatoes, of course.

Now he's ready to cook the omelettes. The traditional FatCat™ cooking style requires that the dish had everything in it, and pretended to be diet food. So take my stainless skillet, treat it as if it were non-stick - very little oil, we are cooking healthy here. Sautee some garlic and scallions, add leftover deli ham, mix in porcinis that I had meanwhile sauteed in a good amount of EVOO mixed with butter (I am not trying to cook healthy), beat 1 whole egg with 3 egg whites (less cholesterol; this is how I utilize the egg whites left after making fresh pasta), pour over the mixture, let set, try to scrape it off the skillet and fold.

The result is a surprisingly tasty mess, served with mixed greens, avocado and heirloom tomato slices, and yes, blueberries, in the sunny garden. Another cup of coffee, and I am fully awake.

The rest of porcinis made a pasta the next day: sautee porcini and white mushrooms in half EVOO - half butter with salt and pepper until golden, add minced garlic and shallot, when softened, add a couple tablespoons creme fraiche, warm through. Serve with penne pasta, garnish with fine herbes and mild grated parmesan.

Salad: heirloom tomatoes, buffalo mozzarella, basil, EVOO, balsamic vinegar, sea salt, fresh ground pepper.

Wine: Dry Creek 2006 Taylor's Vineyard Musque.

Dessert: Figs with prosciutto - I'm refusing to turn vegeterian no matter what's on the market.

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