A mother-daughter conversation on food and cooking (mostly)

Friday, April 18, 2008

Tuna and Some Simple Sides

I'm going to give up buying fresh tuna for home cooking. Even when it's gorgeous, as this slab was, it's never as fresh tasting or perfectly textured as I hope. So it's not worth the expense, even just twice a year. I'll eat it in restaurants, where it will be better prepared and more carefully sourced.

But aside from the disappointing tuna, this was a delicious meal. I cooked soba noodles and tossed them with a super-quick peanut sauce I invented on the spot. We were going out and I didn't want to breathe garlic or green onions at anyone, so I just mixed a few tablespoons of chunky natural peanut butter with small amounts of soy sauce, sriracha, rice vinegar, and a dash of sugar, then thinned the mixture with some hot water. I tossed that with the cooked and rinsed soba noodles and some cilantro and served it at room temperature.

The green beans I boiled until they were tender, then tossed with lemon zest, dried lavender, tiny snipped pieces of candied ginger, olive oil, salt and pepper. This was an experiment based on an amazing lavender-lemon coffeecake I tried last year at Macrina, a bakery in Seattle. It worked. I will make them again.

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