It’s a springish lunch of potatoes and fresh peas (God knows where they are from!) with good Irish butter and chives snipped from the window box. Things keep getting better and better.

 

Busy day, rainy day, perfect day for a pimentón-rubbed roast chicken. Didn’t wait to cook carrots and mash a few potatoes to round out the meal, we each just chose our favorite piece and tucked in. One prefers a leg and thigh, the other goes for the breast—we have a perfect partnership.

 

More chickpeas for lunch today—hummus two ways. One is simple with minced preserved lemon and Aleppo pepper, the other topped with cauliflower in turmeric parsley sauce. We’ll wipe the dishes clean with warm pita. If you haven’t seen it already, take a peek at a bit of Roger Sherman’s  The Search for Israeli Cuisine  http://kck.st/1E5RqmP. It inspired our lunch today.


 

The day just slipped away from us. By 4:00 pm, we were starving to death, and realized we hadn’t eaten lunch. So we quickly stewed some chickpeas in a chunky tomato sauce, added a few glugs of really good extra-virgin olive oil, and a hard-boiled egg. What do you call a late lunch, linner?

 

We made a vat of Bolognese sauce to make several pans of lasagna for a beloved neighbor’s farewell dinner tomorrow night. Everyone is watching the weather; snow is expected so the guests may have to ski in! For today’s lunch we swirled long spirals of  fusilli col buco into a few stolen spoonfuls of the lusty sauce. Fat green beans in olive oil provided our daily dose of vitamins. This week Johann Sebastian Bach “is” three hundred and thirty years old and he is serenading us as we slurp.

 

 

It is a vegetarian-ish lunch today, a soup of potatoes and escarole cooked in yesterday’s flavorful corned-beef broth. Well, suppose that’s our version of vegetarian!

 

We cooked two corned-beef briskets today. One is for our traditional Saint Paddy’s Day dinner later this evening. The other one is for lunch—our favorite hash topped with a poached egg and lots of chives. The green beer is chilling on ice. Erin go bragh!

 

 

The weekend rains washed away much of the snow. We discovered that chives in our gardens are pushing their way up through the wet, muddy earth. There is hope that warm weather is just around the corner. But it is still raw outside. So lunch today is a big, meaty smoked ham hock and a mess of collards with really good olive oil and pepper—hopefully, the season of eating sturdy greens is coming to an end.

 

 

TGIF, as everyone says. We, on the other hand, are always a little sad to see our week end. We love our unconventional work—time just flies. We took a break around noon to have a lunch of roasted tomatoes and skirt steak. Think we’ll indulge in a couple of end-of-the-day sidecars at our favorite bar down the alley—why not? Remember to cook something delicious for yourselves this weekend, dear friends.

 

All the ice, snow, and frozen ground is thawing. We splash through pools of water as we drive up and down the river roads. But there are still patches of ice that send the car sliding and remind us that we aren’t out of winter’s grasp just yet. But spring is in the air. And though the temperature doesn’t warrant a salad quite yet, we both ate every morsel of our quasi-Salades Niçoise.

 

 

Thank you San Francisco friends for the bag of  Iacopi Farms’ gigantes beans grown on the foggy coast south of the city in Half Moon Bay. We simmered the big (actually giant, as their name suggests) beauties until they were soft and creamy, then served them with braised broccoli rabe and sliced shallots. Olive oil seasoned with anchovies, garlic, and crushed red peppers flakes anointed our simple, satisfying lunch. Who needs meat.

 

It’s 50° today, so soon those first shoots of green will push through the thawing earth. But in the meantime, we’ll satisfy our taste with a salad of chopped crisp celery, salty anchovies, preserved lemons, and really good olive oil.

 

A package arrived from California this morning; guess what was in it? Our generous friends, Peggy Knickerbocker and Robert Fisher, filled a box with these grassy green spears of asparagus and shipped it to us. The West took pity on the East. We peeled them (not that they really needed it), plunged them into boiling water, anointed them with butter, then seasoned them with good salt and cracked black pepper. We are bending the seasonal eating rules today, after all, it’s spring somewhere!

 

We went hunting for some green vegetables at the market today, knowing full well it would be slim pickings. We’re so over the winter cabbages and root veggies by now. But lo and behold, we found a bin full of beautiful bright green, marble-sized Brussels sprouts that we just had to have. We roasted them alongside a plump chicken breast and with a little pan sauce and a handful of celery leaves to add a little more green to the plate, it was a pretty and most delicious lunch.

 

 

 

March is cooperating—behaving like the proverbial lion (we are hoping/praying that the lamb will follow suit). Snow and sleet the day before last. More of the same coming this afternoon. We’re craving the green of spring—isn’t everyone? We hear from the west that Californians are feasting on spring asparagus, lucky dogs. But we easterners must keep our spirits up with nourishing lunches like this cod and potato chowder with crisp cubes of pancetta and lots of fresh chives. Eat well, be happy!

 

Today’s lunch is a seared smoked pork chop on cabbage and raisins braised in dry vermouth—we’ll share.