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if you haven’t already noticed by now, i love food.  my tastes have been refined over the years (from the days when a bag of salt n vinegar chips and cheddar cheese popcorn were my top treat choices) – and i now know that cherokee purple, yellow pear, and green zebra are all names of tomatoes, what things like shallots, foi gras, and muscavado sugar are, and can stand to put foods like guacamole, black beans, and asparagus into my mouth.

and since graduating college, i’ve added one more item to the list:  growing my own food.

this really shouldn’t be seen as anything monumental, since my grandfather has been growing an acre-large garden for the entire span of my memory.  so i see my own fledgling attempts at gardening more as an acceptance of genetics than any miraculous breakthrough.  still – sticking a seed in the ground and watching it actually grow and produce something edible is an incredible thrill, yes?

so in a wave of inspiration on tuesday evening (might’ve mentioned before that weeknights are not usually nights of great culinary masterpieces) i decided to make dinner from all the random bits of produce we had piling up everywhere; some from our garden, some from my grandfather’s.

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from top left:

1. green bean and cherry tomato salad – in the picture it looks like a pasta dish, but really those are green and yellow beans.  i subbed out the vinaigrette and tossed them in a cream cheese sauce.

2. corn and tomato scramble – despite the name, no eggs.  more of like a zippy tomato corn salsa.

3. squash and potato latkes (pancakes) – had a lot of squash, so i used that instead of the zucchini.  also used cornmeal in place of the matzo meal.

cream cheese aside, every single ingredient came from the garden – and just as important: was really easy to make (and cost nearly nothing).  all 3 recipes could totally be improvised without a recipe at all.  and those are my favorite kinds.  drives ross nuts, but i like the flexibility of just making stuff up on the fly.  i reserve the OCD for baking.

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