Prune and cardamom? Spaghetti squash and pesto? Nectarines and Walnut crust? Peas and Kale? Where does it all end? Where does this crazy pairing of things end? Shouldn’t there be some maintenance of categorical boundaries? Doesn’t the world run more smoothly when everything and everyone is in their rightful place? Shouldn’t we stick with peanut butter and jelly?
My answer. No and sometimes. A spatula and a baseball. Variety is the spice of life. Start with 6 things and you have 6 things. Combine the 6 things in varying groups of 2, 3, 4, and 5 and you have many more things than the number of minutes it would take me to do that particular math. And there is always common ground…. even between a spatula and a baseball.
What’s the point? Politically speaking we are not handling diversity of viewpoints or approaches very well here in the US these days… and while politics may make for strange bedfellows, creative cooking can make for strange table-fellows.
In a recent post about pairing new and different ingredients (ginger, sweet potato and black beans), via a speed dating set up, astute reader Patty (who has a fine blog you should check out) suggested a contest about pairing odd culinary items. We’ve decided that she is oh so clever and that we would be oh so clever to listen to her! TaDah! – a fine example of listening for our representatives in Washington!
First – read my latest creative “In-Your-Face” to the denizens of our House and Senate who can’t even get together despite being the same species, Then leave a comment which may or may not reflect on how much you love our blog, how funny we are, how Little Sis should always do what I say cause I’m older…. but you must reflect on a combo you have tried, tasted or thought about. Don’t be shy. We’re talking about speed dating – you never know who might sit down across from whom and when that might yield a lasting relationship! We are interested in wild and wonderful.
We will take the old fashioned approach of writing your name on a slip of paper, dropping it in a bowl and having my 12 year old reach in with his size 11 foot (size 11 foot!!!) and pluck out a winner with his toes. If your entry alliterates (ingredients start with the same letter) we’ll give you a double entry. Winner will receive the lovely heavy duty silicone spatula pictured above plus another of that spatula in a different color of our choice just so they don’t match. That’s it! And I promise I won’t put my own name in 20 times because I really want to keep that purple spatula, because we are going for table fellows who play nicely with each other. I’m gonna stick to my promises and pass it, and a differently colored mate along to some lucky reader!
I go first!
Prune Cardamom Sauce
This is an adaptation of Date Cream which Little Sis and I offered up in an earlier post as an alternative to maple syrup or honey. You might also check out Little Sis’ Maple cashew butter for another syrup alternative.
My son liked this version a lot which surprised me because I thought the cardamom made the taste a little adult. Who knows? Perhaps his taste buds are growing as fast as his feet!
This is so easy that I’m embarrassed….., but I can live with embarrassment I guess.
1/3 cup prunes
2/3 cup milk of choice (I used almond – don’t think dairy would affect this negatively)
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
Bring these 3 things into harmonious existence as a new and wonderful thing with a high speed blender. Perhaps a large food processor would work as well, but it is a bit wet. Let us know if someone tries this.
Adjust thickness to intent and taste. I think just a bit thicker would be a good pairing with almond butter on a sandwich.
Now……. Bring on the combos people! We’d love to hear about your combos, your kids combos, and maybe we’ll have some news about our representatives doing their jobs by the time this contest is over (October 8th).
While I would argue that politics makes convenient, sleazy and selfishly advantageous bedfellows, we will stick to convenient and advantageous with the pairings / peace makings and adventures in combination that we all come up with, without even having a fancy office or staff! We look forward to your crazy combos!