I’ve noticed over time that I really am attracted to bright colours and pleasing presentation in food. I don’t always achieve those things in my day to day cooking, but they are always there for me.
It’s no accident that one of my most favourite food blogs is by the Scrumptious Pumpkin; she just knows how to put together a pretty dish. Oh, and one that is invariably tasty and pretty good for you too! Mama’s Gotta Bake gets me every time too with her meticulous presentation and tasty ideas. I also get great recipe ideas from Creative Noshing, Green Pocket Protector (Libby makes me laugh as often as she provides good ideas) and a number of other favoured blog destinations. Edited to add: I forgot to specifically mention Biscuits and Bobbins, which is another food and garden focused blog that I adore.
A self-described moody cook, it’s also no accident that my love for cooking and putting together a delicious meal goes into overdrive in the main harvest months. I still have the odd day when I lose inspiration and feel too tired to face the kitchen, but for most of the primary food growing season, I’m so there, waiting to see what I can do with what comes out of my garden or from our local farmers’ market. I love simple. I’m not so much afraid as suspicious of complicated; as I’ve noted here before, Nigel Slater is my culinary crush, so that gives a pretty good picture of who I am as a cook.
Last night’s supper was frighteningly easy: with a nice amount of Rainbow Chard to hand in my smallest veggie bed (just outside my front door, not inaccessibly down at the greenhouse!), and a few minutes surfing the internet, I found my point of inspiration. More often than not I grab inspiration from my favourite food-focused blogs, but in this case I ended up on Simply Recipes, where I found Eggs Nested in Sauteed Chard and Mushrooms. (The presentation photo over there is worth a peak and much more impressive than my own modest picture above.)
I don’t dislike mushrooms, but they are only a very occasional ingredient in my kitchen, and I’ve no interest in learning to harvest them from the wild (I’d like to live for as long as I might be able to on this earth and don’t trust that I’d always get it right with identifying mushrooms). So, mushrooms did not make it into my version.
After a few minutes spent prepping my chard, I warmed some garlic in olive oil and briefly sauteed a beautiful white onion (purchased at the farmer’s market a few days ago), along with some red pepper flakes. Then I added my chard and a bit of salt and pepper. A couple of lovely local eggs were cracked directly on top of this delicious mixture in the pan, and left to set for a few minutes.
In the meantime I set about spreading a fairly generous amount of homemade garlic scape pesto onto some bread. The pesto was a gift from a wonderful new friend (our dog’s breeder) who I believe has just become my local gardening mentor.
And that, right there, was our meal. To my eyes and palate, simple perfection.