Saturday, March 08, 2008

Braised Belgian Endive Gratin (Page 539)

  • Date: Tuesday, March 4, 2008 -- 9pm
  • Location: Bloomington, IN
  • Kitchen: My Apartment
  • Dining Companion: Matty
  • Recipe Rating: B-

I don't know why I picked this recipe to make this past week. I vastly prefer Belgian endive raw and paired with cheese to any cooked Belgian endive preparations I have come across, so I wasn't terribly excited about this recipe. However it wasn't bad. The braising technique mellowed out the bitterness of the endive quite a bit, and the breadcrumbs and cheese were (at least in theory) a nice topping. However, following the recipe exactly the topping was black and burnt after only half the indicated time in the broiler. And the layer of breadcrumbs was so thick that while the top was completely burnt, the layers underneath weren't even toasty. My recommendation: more cheese, fewer breadcrumbs. Other than that, the recipe was fine. I find the texture of cooked endive not terribly appealing (it's more than a little slimy), but the flavors in this dish were pretty good. Overall: not bad.

The recipe in The Book is the same as this one, except the one in The Book only calls for 1/2 cup of breadcrumbs.

It is still winter in Bloomington, but it seems to be spring in Boston. And early spring in Boston means one thing: cold, cold rain. It has been gloomy and raining all day today, which made the weather perfect for two things: sleeping and running. I didn't feel like I desperately needed spring break right now, or like I was particularly worn out. But as soon as I laid down for a little rest, it seemed that perhaps I should take a nap. Or two. Or three. I have slept more in the last 48 hours than I usually do in three or four days. It's been great.

I just got back from my other favorite rainy day activity: running in the rain. I don't really like running outside that much, mainly because if the air is dry I have a lot of trouble breathing. I had asthma as a kid, and maybe I still do -- who knows. But I wheeze when I run outdoors and afterwards my chest and throat always feel like shit. I don't have this problem on a treadmill. Or if I run in the rain (rain = higher humidity=moister air=easier breathing?)! I love water, and I love being wet, so I care not at all if I am soaked from head to toe. I went running with my special gentleman friend this afternoon, through fairly heavy rain. He ran around all the puddles, while I ran straight through them. I love that feeling of splashing through puddles. I came home soaked and happy. It was the best run I have had in a while.

Up next, excellent rainy day activity number three: cooking dinner!


Magdalen said...

There is such a thing as exercise-induced asthma. (I have it.) In addition to the obvious reason for onset, it's triggered by cold. It can be exacerbated by air quality. When I lived in Albany, NY, my asthma was pretty bad. In Philadelphia it was much much better. Now that I'm in the country, it's virtually nonexistent. But then I don't run in the rain! (It poured buckets yesterday, nearly washing out our road.)

Teena said...

Yeah, that's what I had as a kid. Probably I still do, but I no longer make any effort to treat it. In general it isn't so bad -- but running outside when the air is cold and dry is miserable! Cold and rainy is much better!