Regular readers will know that I’ve been trying, for the past year or so, to use more locally available foods when I cook. I’ve found a few cookbooks that are based on using seasonal, local produce, and I’ve found many recipes in these books that I think are just wonderful.
And then the other day I came across Martha Stewart’s Quick Cook on my kitchen bookshelf. I had sort of forgotten about it–I’d purchased it in the 80s and tried a few recipes out of it at the time, but at that time in my life it was more about dreaming of entertaining than doing a lot of actual cooking.
But I remembered that the recipes in this book, too, are based on what’s available seasonally and using what you’ve already got in your pantry. (I’ve always wanted an actual pantry. . . but that’s beside the point.)
So I started paging through Quick Cook and found quite a few recipes that I want to try–the first of which, Tuscan Tomato Soup, I made yesterday. It was quite good–it was really simple (which is certainly not always the case with Martha’s recipes) and pretty fast. It was basically minced carrots, celery, and onion, which gets softened in butter and oil, and then you add either fresh tomatoes or canned tomatoes and fresh basil. Of course, with the tomatoes available around here this time of year, I used canned. And it was good–not fantastic, maybe, but I would definitely make it again, especially with fresh garden tomatoes.
I think I’m going to have to give Martha another shot on my main kitchen bookshelf.