A couple more really good uses for breadcrumbs...
-Browned in good olive oil and sprinkled over pasta (poor person’s Parmigiano)
-Judy Rodger’s eggs fried in breadcrumbs (here on Culinate: http://www.culinate.com/books/collections/all_books/The+Zuni+Cafe+Cookbook/fried_eggs_in_breadcrumbs); really, really good
-what I call fritters: leftover vegetables (mostly) bound with egg, breadcrumbs, and pan fried (http://realgoodfood.com/recipes-2/the-fritter-chronicles/)
Even here in the damp of Oregon I can leave old bread on the countertop to dry and it doesn’t get moldy. How I make breadcrumbs: http://realgoodfood.com/recipes-2/basics/bread-crumbs/
Since your newspaper reprinted the recipe without letting me know, I’m not sure if it was altered. But I’m guessing that your version was dry because the pork was too lean. It’s a common problem with most supermarket pork. You could try reducing the cooking temp to 250F and the time to a couple of hours or until the pork is done but not too dry.
I recently posted an old story I did about one of the first Beard birthday celebrations in 1988. I actually met his childhood friend Mary Hamblett, interviewing her at her house near Council Crest.
I used a basic refrigerator pickle approach, equal parts water and vinegar (shameless self-promotion: best is Katz Gravenstein Apple Cider Vinegar, Orleans method vinegar from California’s Suisun Valley), 2 parts salt to 1 sugar, boiled, cooled, and poured over sliced cardoons (prepped as you describe above). A few days in the refrigerator and eat.
I’ll admit that we mostly grew cardoons for the flowering thistle heads with their electric blue tops. But we did a little garden makeover last summer and pulled them out. We had several growing, all from a sampler seed packet I’d planted several years earlier. They were robust, and I’d moved some to different parts of our small garden, but they got to be about 10 feet tall and the lower leaves crowded out anything nearby. The biomass from trimming took over the compost, so we decided we could do without them for awhile.
I’ve decided the best use of winter squash is what I call fritters. Here’s a recipe from my site:
I recently tweaked this approach a bit and made pancakes with the cooked squash, too:
Squash Corncakes with Bacon
In one bowl, combine the dry ingredients: 1 cup good cornmeal (Ayers Creek, Anson Mills, or similar whole grain ground corn), 1/2 cup whole wheat flour, 1 teaspoon each baking soda and salt. Add about a half cup of chopped, cooked bacon.
Separate two eggs. To the yolks, add a cup of cooked winter squash, and a cup of milk (or buttermilk or yogurt or a mix). Blend well, then combine with the dry ingredients. Add more milk if the batter is too thick to pour. Beat the whites to soft peaks and fold in. Cook on a griddle, serve with maple syrup (and maybe a dollop of creme fraiche).
What I ate Tuesday:
Toast with peanut butter, orange juice, espresso for breakfast.
Lunch at work was leftovers evolved from a chickpea & farro stew made Friday. Added leftover pork loin, stirred in Ayers Creek polenta and cooked until thick.
For dinner I fired up the Weber for grilled chicken thighs (with Shawn’s secret rub), resurrected the clarklewis version of caramelized brussells sprouts with mustard, experimented with Cajun butternut squash (a keeper), and made another whole wheat olive oil tart with plums.
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