I am a sucker for homegrown food, and our sun-soaked garden is giving us plenty to be thankful for these days. What I’m not so into are these millions of ants that won’t leave us alone! They seem to have built their lair underneath our prized parsley and our delicate dill; practically uprooting the plants in their comings and goings. Evil, pure evil. I hate this colony of little teeny super-villains parading back and forth across our property carrying their day’s bounty. This weekend, after various attempts at poisoning the ants, Udi tried a technique that seemed all too obvious. He poured a jug of boiling water down into the ant holes and basically smoked ’em out (in the style of george dubya II). It seems to have worked! Maybe not entirely, but for the time being there are far less ants and far happier plants.
In celebration of this victory I made us a divine salad of greens n’ things plucked right from the patch outside. We had bok choy (which had already flowered due to hot weather – but it’s still great because you can eat flowers and stems, too!) swiss chard, carrots, and celery and herbs for days. These kinds of lunches are a true testament to all of our hard work. But you should know something, we don’t just garden at our house–we also build things.
This weekend my roommates and I woke up, put on our working gear, and began a project of demolishing a deck we built 2 years ago. It was a deck made entirely from found materials that we plundered and dragged from all corners of the city and it was beautiful. But nothing lasts forever and this deck had been battered by the sun for 2 summers, beaten by heavy rain, stood on by 30 of our closest friends and overtime it started to show its weathered age. This weekend we had new goals in mind; to remove the deck and rebuild the back yard with tiles lay by hand. One big, beautiful, glorious surface that would accommodate far more people and give us a little much needed facelift.
Doing some serious heavy lifting we made a dent in the overall project – and so far it looks like a dreamland. I can only imagine how much better it will look in the coming days. Yay for DIY! Yay for outdoor spaces in urban places! Keeping in the spirit of good moods lets talk about goat cheese.
Because goat cheese is also dreamy in its own way, am I right? It has a tanginess that is awakening and a creaminess that makes things feel more decadent when near it. You can buy goat cheese at any deli, any supermarket, slap it on some crusty bread with some cut up apples or sautéed kale and it’s delicious, this is a fact. Or you can slather it in breadcrumbs and fry it up in oil and watch it really sing.
This is how I prepared my little goats today, crispy and golden, warm and slightly gooey inside. The perfect accompaniment to my delicate garden salad of triumph. If you are not so lucky to have a garden of Eden outside you window, have no fear, this salad is good as gold with a simple plate of mixed greens or romaine. Let the long days of summer begin. Amen.
Fried Goat Cheese Salad with Shaved Zucchini and Stuff
1 package of goat cheese
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup breadcrumbs
small handful of herbs finely chopped ( i used rosemary and oregano)
1 ripe zucchini
1/4 canola oil for frying
Salad ingredients (lettuce, carrots, tomatoes, radishes, celery…whatever tickles you)
salt and pepper
olive oil and lemon
Start by placing your goat cheese in the freezer. This will make it easier to slice later.
Wash and chop all your veggies for the salad and place in a bowl. Using a vegetable peeler create shavings of the zucchini trying to get the whole length of the vegetable in one motion.
Get your flour, breadcrumbs and whisked egg ready by placing them in 3 separate bowls.
To the bowl that contains breadcrumbs add a handful of finely chopped herbs, a big pinch of salt and a few grinds of pepper. Heat your canola oil in a small pan and wait for it to get nice and hot over medium high heat.
In the meantime remove your goat cheese from the freezer and with a sharp knife slice into even 1 cm wide slices. Clean your knife in between slices to prevent sticking.
Dip your slices into the three bowls, FIRST in the flour, SECOND in the egg, and THIRD in the breadcrumbs, being sure to coat it thoroughly. Place the goat cheese into the hot oil carefully. It should take about a minute and half to become nice and golden brown, flip and continue cooking an additional minute. If its turning too dark too quickly be sure to drop the heat to keep it from burning. Remove the done ones to a paper towel to drain.
Once you have fried up all the goat cheese You can place them gently on the salad or serve the portions of salad first and then top with the goat cheese to your liking. Drizzle the whole things with good olive oil and a squirt or two lemon, salt and pepper to taste.