Friday, December 4, 2009

Sweet Tastes

I'd been badly craving a simple, buttery sweet taste, so last night I made a pound cake (by no means the ne plus ultra - still too dry for my degraded tastes but with a good flavor and pleasantly crusty top.) Besides, I was in the mood for baking: careful measuring, meticulous buttering-and-flouring, and even little niceties I generally ignore, like bringing the eggs to room temperature in warm water.

On a roll, I decided to clean out the vegetable bin which, with each successive visit to the greenmarket, becomes more impassible. So I roasted parsnips, squash, shallots and turnips with thyme and olive oil; threw in some beets wrapped in foil; steamed leeks and dressed them with a mustardy vinaigrette, and then grated carrots and tossed them with oil and lemon. (A small cabbage could not be saved. I was secretly relieved.) The result was an aggressively healthy dinner saved from veganism only by the excellent cow's milk cheese a friend contributed to Wednesday's Maria Callas Memorial Spaghetti Dinner. And, of course, the pound cake.