Monday, July 30, 2012

Baby Fennel in Summer

This year I finally joined a CSA (Community Supported Agriculture) with a guy in my neighborhood.  I have always been a bit hesitant about joining because of the amount of food one share provides.  However, when I went to the meeting this spring they allowed you to split a share.  So, I introduced myself to a man at the meeting  who also needed to split a share.  Every Thursday we meet at one of the local schools to divvy up our goods.  This week we had some delicious baby fennel.  It was the perfect amount for two salads-Seared Scallops with Baby Fennel and Orange.  This was exactly what I needed on a 90 degree day.  Very refreshing.   Hope you’ll enjoy this one too. I didn't have exact measurement like a standard recipe and I promise not to make this a habit, but this was so simple I think you can do this without exact quantities.  If you are a bit challenged, let me know and I'll give exact amounts.

Seared Scallops with Baby Fennel and Orange Salad

2 bulbs baby fennel
Juice of an Orange
Orange zest
Orange segments
Canola oil
Salt and pepper to taste
Seared scallops
Sea Salt

Trim fennel, reserve some of the fronds for the salad
Shave fennel in a bowl
In a separate bowl, prepare vinaigrette with orange juice, zest, honey, canola oil, salt and pepper to taste.
Add vinaigrette, orange segments and fennel fronds to the shaved fennel.  Toss and let stand until scallops are ready
Serve salad with scallops; Put a pinch of sea salt on each scallop

Oh and there is just one more thing.  The sauce that is around the plate can be reduces balsamic or orange juices that  was used to deglaze the pan.  I however, used Vanilla Ice Wine Vinegar, although a bit hard to find,  in the upcoming months I'll tell you have you can either make it or by it.  I have so much I want to share with you!   

Saturday, July 28, 2012


The Soul of Our Food-Food-Recipes-Health-Muse

They say the journey of 1000 miles starts when you take the first step.  Well, this first entry begins my venture.  My name is Lamour  and I am a chef of many years.  A little over a year ago I left the kitchen mainly for a lifestyle change.  I wanted to do something in the food arena that would allow me to manage my own time.

Since my love and passion for food is eternal, I thought, the best way to transition out of the kitchen would be to get a job selling gourmet/high end foods to Chefs. This type of career would get me out of the kitchen but still connected to chefs in the industry. 
So I landed a job as a culinary sales rep for a specialty food company. Over this past year, I have spent most of my time learning about my company’s products and establishing a customer base.  I  won’t bore you with what that has been like but I will say that being the master of one’s time is overrated.

Over this past year, while spending long days driving as much as 300 miles a day, I have really learned a lot about myself.  Driving down long country roads away from the chaos of a kitchen and alone with my thoughts has been therapeutic.  I have no regrets about leaving the kitchen but I miss cooking and working with beautiful fresh ingredients. 

Yes, sure, I can prepare some things at home but with the exception of holidays, I am typically preparing food for myself. I guess you could say that is where the healthy aspect of my post will come in.   I have never had to count calories or really cared for that matter, but since I turned 40 I have found it necessary.  Exercise alone just doesn’t cut it anymore.  I am always looking for new ways to prepare old favorites and when I find out how, I will be happy to share them with you.  I hope that they will be an inspiration to you.  Friends often ask me how I am able to cook and work around food and maintain the health that I presently enjoy.  Life is a balancing act that we must constantly strive to maintain.  

This blog will also touch on food history and how it relates to where we come from and where we are going.  As an African American woman, I am especially interested in that part of food history as it relates to the African American Experience.   As resident of Astoria NY where 120 nationalities are represented, I am surrounded by foods from far off lands.  I hope to share these foods along with their story.

I believe that food should empower, educate, enlighten and inspire and I hope that this blog does that so here goes.