Aside from some cursory mentions and to answer specific questions, I have rarely felt the desire to write about this site on this site. Maybe it was because it seemed too self-referential, or maybe it is because I enjoyed the romantic notion that my writing was part of a conversation rather than a post on a computer screen; either way I always felt better in ignoring the technicalities of food blogging and website management.
However, due to a technical glitch, I have had to republish certain articles from my archives. My day has been spent resurrecting old posts, my eyes now sore from scanning old files and rearranging templates.
Since I enjoy the illusion that hides the work that goes into the site and my writing, I must admit I do believe that many of us subscribe to a similar fantasy in regards to the lifestyles behind food blogs. While I can only speak for myself definitively, I am sure that there are others who would admit that not every dish that graces our table is camera-ready, or that every meal eaten out is from a starred restaurant.
How very fitting it is then, that while rooting around for some files to reconstruct the archive I came across this picture for a Mixed Berry Ricotta Fool. A dish made up completely of odds and ends from other dishes featured here, it is a good dose of honesty - I mean, how often does one mention, let alone write about, the humdrum reality of leftovers?
Not every meal I cook is meant for publication; most days (especially in these last few months) I have not been able to enjoy the luxury of planning multi-course meals or experimenting as much as I used to. More often than not the focus of my cooking is to resolve the grumbling of stomachs and the solution lies in whatever is in the fridge. Far from glamorous I know, but closer to the demands of the everyday.
I will admit though, as much as I can recognize this actuality, I have little desire to write or dwell upon it. As shallow as it seems, I would like to continue my daydream that every author behind every site I read is living an utterly fashionable life, that every city is exciting every day, that almost every meal is a success, that any failures are dealt with aplomb and are simply fodder for a rapier wit.
But please do not draw back the curtain on the dirty dishes and take-out meals and the midnight snacks of saltines and peanut butter. While I do believe a good measure of self-awareness and accepting oneself, leftovers and all, let's not go overboard.
My apologies to subscribers of this site for old posts appearing on the site feed. I hope you don't mind the trip down memory lane.
Mixed berry ricotta fool
My own creation. Luscious, yet light, this recipe delivers a perfect balance of flavours and texture.
Blame it on lack of sleep (an infant will do that to you), but while I have the photo, I have no recollection of where I put the exact recipe. The following are estimations.
1/3 cup of mixed berries
3 tablespoons ricotta
Honey, I believe I used about 1/2 teaspoon, but go with your taste depending on the tartness of the fruit
1/8 teaspoon vanilla
A few grates of lemon zest (optional)
Crush the berries with the back of a fork or in a mortar and pestle to form a coarse purée.
In another bowl, combine ricotta, honey, vanilla and nutmeg (if using). Fold the berry mixture through the ricotta, until marbled well but not completely blended. Check for sweetness and adjust honey if needed.
Spoon on slices of baguette, scones or to top waffles and pancakes.
• Omit the lemon zest and use a few grates of nutmeg for a background note of spice.
• Alternatively this fool can be mounded on split strawberries for a quick snack, multiplied to fill prebaked tart shells, in a napoleon of puff pastry, or between layers of sponge cake. It also makes a simple summer dessert when served in a cup with shortbread or sugar cookies alongside.