Monday, April 19, 2010

Grilled tomatoes with lemon caper creme sauce

The future home for delicious carrots, cucumbers, tomatoes, and beans (to name a few) are pictured here in our lovely backyard.  Ben and I recently spent an entire weekend digging up grass, building cedar walls, and pounding in stakes to create these three beautiful raised garden beds.  This week we will have soil and this weekend we will have starts planted! 

We plan on getting a cherry tree for the front yard and we will be building a trellis for hops along the south side of the house, which gets a good dose of sun. 

Those hops?  Yeah, they will make gluten free beer.  Gluten free beer with chocolate and coffee notes.  The kind of beer I used to drink, but that no company currently feels like making.  Ben and I will be making our own, exactly how we like it.

Home projects like this have been keeping us busy for a while.  And the Portland spring sunshine has been calling to us, pulling at us, asking us, will we please come out and play?  We’ve been stepping outside, shedding our layers, with the sun slowly drawing the chill from our damp winter bones.  I’ve been biking to work yet again, feeling the cool crisp air nipping at my face in the morning while the streets are still quiet, and peddling easily home in the warm afternoon. 

One Saturday morning, I taught Ben everything I know about basketball; how to shoot, dribble, protect the ball, box out on the rebound, and pass.  I filled his head with random tidbits I remembered about things like faking out, pivot moves, defensive positioning, and working the lane. 

The next morning we both woke up feeling like we’d been hit by a garbage truck.  Oi!  Our bones are less than forgiving these days. 

We have been taking every opportunity to use our grill, sitting in our backyard with a beer and a book, while combination of smoke, barbeque sauce, and food smells torture us until it’s ready to eat.  Ben makes his own sauces, rubs, and mustards, so – yes – we are incredibly spoiled.  

This is one you all need to try.  We mixed up some lamb burgers with nutmeg, rosemary, garlic, and a dash of sea salt and freshly grated pepper.  We then threw some asparagus and a few whole tomatoes over our smoker box in on the grill (filled with hickory chips).  We cooked them over medium heat, turning once, until the tomato skins began to crack.   Inside the house, I mixed a few spoonfuls of crème fraiche with a spoonful of capers and a few drops of lemon juice.  I spooned this mixture over the perfectly smoked veggies and after one bite of the tomato, I ran to get my camera – this was too good not to share.