The sweltering days of summer always make me crave two things: 1) Something cold. (If it’s bubbly, all the better.) 2) Something spicy.
So when the sous chef mentioned Mexican recently, the wheels started whizzing — talk about a food just perfect with an ice-cold beer on a super hot day. Tacos? Enchiladas? Spicy corn salads? Where to begin?
That’s when I came across a recipe for chicken braised in Mexican spices — a lovely preparation for chicken that leaves you with mounds of shredded meat and a deliciously spicy gravy.
As for what to do with the chicken and gravy, a trip to my Brooklyn farmers’ market seemed to be in order, especially since my Let’s Lunch crew had decided on a local market-inspired lunch dish for August …
In addition to discovering and falling in love with the fish guy at the Brooklyn Heights farmers market, I’ve also been seduced by the New Jersey produce man just across from him.
What’s not to love about a giver of fat, red strawberries and deep green, flowering chives? Also, who knew fruit and vegetables from New Jersey could look so good? (I kid, I kid …)
On a recent Saturday, produce man’s beautifully plump peas caught my eye and snagged my heart.
Big, firm and just a gorgeous, gorgeous green, I decided then and there that they were too pretty to puree for a chilled pea soup. Instead, I began envisioning a summery risotto — and I had just the recipe.