Since I saw M. Parret cook some fresh green beans from his garden until they were gray, I’ve been obsessing on bright, correctly cooked vegetables. Of course I had to say something and the truth was that he had just forgotten that they were cooking, which I understand. Still, I was bothered.
That’s why I went all fiddly a la Jamie Oliver with this simple, scrumptious, tried and true recipe of spicy aubergine http://cookinginsens.wordpress.com/2013/02/19/spicy-aubergine-with-beef-and-sprout-stir-fry/. This time I wanted to add some green beans and bell peppers but, unable to forget M. Parret’s beans, I complicated the recipe; steaming the beans separately, adding them at the last moment, cooking the peppers apart from the meat and just adding them for the last 5 minutes of cooking. It was fiddly but well worth the summer fresh colors.
Yes, I do have a new bowl, so glad you asked :) There was a pottery fair in the square today and of course I didn’t even try to resist getting some new things for the blog.
Self portrait and pottery fair photos by Jade Mullally.
The weather was gorgeous and some came for the fair, while others came to “style and profile” or both.
Too bad about Jade’s little “souci” with white balance but she totally captured the fair’s ambiance.
One of the reasons I like Sens is that, when the weather is good, there’s always a fair or some other outdoor attraction. These attractions are on a small scale when compared to larger towns but that’s what makes them charming.
Besides hunting for bargains, the fairs, set up between the 12th century Cathedral and the Farmers’ market, afford an opportunity for catching up on the town news, greeting your neighbors or just dawdling the time away over a coffee while people watching.
Some enormous jewelry.
I think this man in the striped shirt was buying for his boutique. Jade adored his shirt.
Jade would like a little Yorkshire terrier. I think that’s what this picture is about.
A great selection. It was hard to choose.
Spicy Aubergine with Green Beans and Peppers
3 tbsp sambal oelek
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp rice vinegar
3 tbsp sake
1 tbsp unrefined sugar (brown)
1/2 lb ground pork
7 tbsp peanut oil
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 inch fresh ginger, minced
1 red bell pepper, diced
3 small, narrow aubergine (Japanese if you can find them), quartered vertically and cut into chaos chunks
2 cups fresh green beans, steamed
Parsley leaves, torn
In a little bowl, mix together the sambal oelek, soy sauce, vinegar, sake and sugar. Set aside.
Cook the pork in a large skillet, remove, drain and set aside.
Wipe out the skillet, add 1 tbsp of peanut oil and fry the garlic and ginger until fragrant. Add the bell pepper and continue to fry until the pepper is crisp tender, then remove from the skillet and set aside.
Wipe out the skillet, add 3 tbsps of peanut oil, then brown half of the aubergine chunks, remove when done, add the last 3 tbsp of oil and brown the other half of the aubergine. Put all of the aubergine into the skillet along with the sauce, pork and vegetable mixture. Bring to a boil, then simmer covered for 5 minutes. Stir in the steamed green beans, then sprinkle with scallions and parsley leaves.
Beverage suggestion: Beer