Musings on Food and Life

Musings on Food & Life

Food is my passion. I create, read, write, breath, eat, photograph, love and live food. As a chef and culinary instructor, each day is a quest to learn something new about a food ingredient, recipe, history, or fact about all things edible. Three silly dogs share my passion for eating and I'm blessed to be married to my best friend Tracy. Tune in for my thoughts on food, recipes, dogs, travel, music and life.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Farmer's Market Bounty

The local Farmer's Markets are amazing this time of year. I buy a CSA bag every other week (CSA stands for community supported agriculture) at the Dunwoody Green Market and this week was the best haul yet - okra, blueberries, squash, lettuce, potatoes, tomatoes and peppers. Combine that with fresh muffins, San Marzano and cherry tomatoes, feta salad dressing (one vendor makes it - yum!), Heritage chicken, and a small watermelon, I'd say that was a good morning's work! Picked some figs from a neighbor's huge fig tree on the way home until the mosquitoes made me quit. (Will be up there later after an application of bug repellent!)

From this bounty, some of the things on my personal menu this week will include Okra Pancakes, Roasted Tomato & Mozzarella Salad with Basil, Blueberry Muffins, Fig Chutney (and maybe a fig tart!), Roasted Potatoes with Rosemary, and perhaps Watermelon Margaritas. Many folks don't like okra, proclaiming it to be too slimy and tasteless. With the right preparation, okra is a delight in the mouth. Who could resist fresh fried okra? Last Saturday at Horseradish Grill near Chastain Park in Atlanta, we feasted on tempura-fried whole okra with a sweet hot chile sauce (had to be some Siracha in there somewhere!) and it was divine. Here's one of my favorite okra recipes from Scott Peacock and Edna Lewis.

Okra Pancakes

1/2 cup stone-ground white cornmeal
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1/2 cup water
1/2 teaspoon fresh-ground black pepper
1/2 cup finely chopped sweet onion
2 cups thinly-sliced okra
Canola, vegetable or grapeseed oil for frying

Place the cornmeal, flour, 1 teaspoon salt and baking powder in a mixing bowl and stir with a whisk to blend. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg and water, and then stir into the dry ingredients, mixing only until moistened.

Combine the onion and okra and then sprinkle the remaining 1/2 teaspoon salt and pepper over them, tossing lightly. Fold vegetables into the batter.

Pour 1 inch of oil into a heavy skillet and heat the oil to 340 F. Spoon the okra batter by heaping tablespoons into the hot oil; avoid crowding the pan. Fry until golden brown on one side and then carefully turn and fry until golden brown on the other side. Remove from the skillet and drain on crumpled paper towels. Serve immediately as a side dish or appetizer. Aioli goes well as a dipping sauce.


  1. i L.O.V.E. your blog! :) and I'm quite jealous of your fig picking:) Cheers, amanda

  2. Congrats Rosemary on a great Blog! I really enjoyed reading it. Love the part about your "kids" ! Will look forward to your next installment!!