Thursday, August 30, 2018

My Newest Invention: Wicked Bread

As I was looking back on my entreVIEW posts, I realized that in the over seven years since my first post on this blog, I have somehow never managed to write about my cooking. If I never really cooked or didn’t have much interest in cooking, this might be about as surprising as having never written about celebrity marriages, country music, or the British royal family (which I indicated at the outset were topics about which I was unlikely to write). 

However, I really enjoy cooking and, in fact, do almost all the cooking for my family (other than the occasional “chopped challenge” with my almost 12-year old daughter). I rarely follow a recipe, although I often look at a few recipes for inspiration as I conjure what to cook. 

In some ways, I think cooking is like being an inventor—trying to find ways to invent new and interesting dishes, experimenting with new ideas, and discovering new ingredients and types of cooking. Just ask my family how obsessed I’ve been with Mediterranean cooking since our trip to Israel three years ago (no I haven’t experimented with Cuy—that’s guinea pig for the uninitiated—which I ate during our trip to Peru this summer).  

I’ve had a lot of fun this summer with a local farm share program through The Good Acre that delivers a box of produce to me (and others) directly to Gray Plant Mooty every Wednesday. I’ve made a lot of new dishes with new ingredients, including a rich broth with chickpeas and swiss chard, topped with a poached egg, inspired by this recipe. When I received a jalapeno pepper in my box a couple of weeks ago, I ended up “inventing” something my family has dubbed “Wicked Bread.” It is a sort of spicy garlic bread that they claim is “wicked good, wicked spicy, and green (like a certain witch in the musical “Wicked”)!

Without further delay, here is my recipe so you can try it yourself (or, at least, use it for your own creative spark as you invent something of your own):

1 loaf of bread (baguette or ciabatta)
1 avocado
1 small jalapeño pepper (you can use a serrano if you want it even spicier)
2 tablespoons softened butter
2 cloves of garlic
¼ teaspoon salt

While heating bread until it is crusty and warm, put garlic and jalapeno pepper into food processor. Process until ground. Add avocado, salt, and butter and process until smooth.  If the mixture is too dry (depends on the ripeness of the Avocado), add 2-3 teaspoons of olive oil and process. Cut loaf in half lengthwise and spread “Wicked Butter” onto each half of loaf. Broil in oven until golden brown (3–4 minutes in my oven). Cut and serve while still warm.

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