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Bowl Food

Bowl Food

Thai Glass Noodles, Shrimp + Veggies

May 27, 2023

One of my dear friends–blonde, blue-eyed Becky, grew up in Thailand, and didn’t even visit the States until well into her teens. We met at college on a hot summer afternoon. I was photographing the shadow-play of bamboo trees on the street behind my dorm, and Becky agreed to step in to a few of the frames. Not long after that, she cooked my first Thai meal, explaining in her lilting, song-like Thai, the names of the ingredients and dishes. It was a fantastic introduction.

In Thailand, Becky explained, there is no actual word for “salad,” but tossing fresh vegetables, proteins, and noodles together with a dressing is the commonplace equivalent, called “yam.” (I quickly learned to say, “Yum!” to yam.) This dish—glass noodles with shrimp, cilantro, Thai chilies, a bit of ground pork, fresh matchstick vegetables and sugared chili-lime-garlic-fishsauce dressing, is a classic known as Yam Woon Sen. Continue Reading…

Bowl Food

Parsley Cilantro Pistachio Pesto

April 30, 2023

Pesto is a recipe that hardly needs a recipe—so versatile + quick + inviting of experimentation. I am constantly changing up the herb + nut component, curious at how this changes flavors. This version—with parsley, cilantro, lemon and pistachio was inspired by dear Tory O’Haire (thanks for that!!)  and I love making it. As with any pesto, you can add a bit more (or less) garlic to alter the pungency. Continue Reading…

Bowl Food

Fennel, Farro + Mushroom Bowl

April 24, 2023

Spring greens everything up in April, bringing welcome fresh growth. Foragers search the woods for wild ramps and mushrooms. And I search stores for one of my favorite vegetables: Snow white, frond-sy fennel. I’ll never forget buying it one April at the outdoor market stalls in Palermo, Italy, where fennel is called, “Finocchio.” I’ve long loved the anise-like taste and crunch of it raw, but when roasted, fennel sheds that licorice flavor to become lusciously sweet and caramelly.

Paired with the sexy silkiness of exotic mushrooms, nutty farro, zesty lemon and fresh snipped parsley, this warm bowl is delicious on its own, or as a side dish. I like to serve it with a drizzle of balsamic syrup and smattering of shaved parmesan. I made this with an assortment of beautiful exotic mushrooms (Lion’s Mane, Oyster and Chestnut) grown at Windy City Mushrooms, and available for pick-up at the Village Farmstand in Evanston, but sub in any tender fresh mushrooms you like.

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