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Green Tomato Salsa, Beef Rib Roast, Quesadillas

I’m leaving on a trip in a few days, so I am trying to make sure I eat everything perishable in the house.

First thing up – getting rid of the last of the green tomatoes that I picked when the garden season was ended by frost.

I split them in half, lay them on a baking sheet cut side down, and roasted them while I was also roasting a butternut squash. I wasn’t too sure what to do with them (because I knew I didn’t want to fry them), but I figured I could probably do anything to them I would do with tomatillos.

Green Tomato Salsa

Remove the peels from the roasted green tomato halves, and dice the tomatoes. Put the tomatoes and all of their juices into a container (but go ahead and compost the skins). I was using 1 very large one, 2 medium, and two very small. But juggle that around in your head and fix up the proportions to whatever you have – I certainly wasn’t being scientific.

To the diced tomatoes, I added roasted garlic pods. I just finished off a head, but I’ll say it was 1/3 of a head of garlic. Take the time to break up the garlic with a fork so that it will incorporate smoothly.

I added half a serrano pepper, seeded and minced.

1 tspn white balsamic vinegar, and then the juice of half a lime (squeeze a little, stir, taste, and then repeat until it tastes right).

Season with salt, pepper, nutmeg, a tiny bit of cinnamon and a decent amount (maybe 2/3 tsp) of oregano.

And it wasn’t quite perfect, so I looked in my spices and pulled out my newly acquired (but not on purpose) Penzey’s Turkish Seasoning – which includes salt, cumin, garlic, half-sharp paprika, black pepper, Turkish oregano, sumac, and cilantro.

It was tasting pretty good, but then I let it sit for a couple hours, and now it tastes amazing. This is the first preparation where I have liked green tomatoes.


A couple weeks ago, the grocery store had a sale on rib roast. Now usually I am cheap with meat and I’ll only buy meats that are under $2/pound without bones. But for some reason, rib roasts catch my eye when they occasionally go on sale at under $5/pound.

So there I was with my $25 piece of meat, and I was busy that weekend and I became rather worried that I was going to have t go bad before I had a chance to cook it.

Then I had a half day of work the Monday after the weekend to go shopping with my mother (because there was no way I was willing to brave a mall between Thanksgiving and Christmas any time other than 9am on a Monday morning). I came home and brilliantly thought to pop in the roast before I left for work at 5pm so that it’d be ready when I came home. (and that way, I wouldn’t have to start cooking the thing at 9:30pm).

Beef Rib Roast

Slice a few garlic cloves in half lengthwise. Plunge the knife into a meaty area, and then stuff garlic into the slit.

Now use the knife to lift a section of the fatty layer on top apart from the meat, and then feed a sprig of rosemary into the resulting tunnel (so the fat will rend, get flavored by the rosemary, and then season the meat).

I dusted the top of the layer of fat with garlic powder and some salt.

Then I put the roast into a very slow oven (250F) for about 45 minutes/pound.

(And don’t forget to save the ribs as you eat the meat away for stock-making later)



I use quesadillas as a way to go through small quantities of leftovers. So an ounce and a half of cheddar cheese, 2 ounces of the beef rib roast meat, the green tomato salsa, half a seeded serrano pepper, and some lettuce, made a pretty delicious couple of quesadillas.

Walnut Hill Restaurant School

I live a block from a Restaurant School, and they have community classes on the side of their formal chef training. I’ve taken a couple classes on wine there that taught me quite a bit more than I expected (though I didn’t know much to start).

So the Winter/Spring catalog of community classes came in the mail. Here’s a list of what interests me in case you are interested in joining me, too –

  • Knife Skills – Wednesday, April 22, 2009 – 7:00-9:30pm – $65
  • Indian Cassis – Tuesday, February 17, 2009 – 7:00-9:30pm – $65
  • Spanish Tapas – Wednesday, February 25, 2009 – 7:00-9:30pm – $65
  • Thai Cooking – Wednesday, May 13, 2009 – 7:00-9:30pm – $65
  • Bread & Pizza Workshop – Sunday, May 17, 2009 – 11:00am-4:00pm – $125
  • Croissants & Brioche – Sunday, March 8 and 15, 2009 – 11:00am-4:00pm – $125
  • Vegan Baking Class – Monday, March 2, 2009 – 7:00pm-9:30pm – $60
  • 5 Wine Challenge Dinners – 7:00pm – $45 each, $150 for all
    • Wednesday, January 21, 2009 – California vs Australia
    • Wednesday, February 18, 2009 – France vs U.S.
    • Wednesday, March 25, 2009 – Germany vs Alsace
    • Wednesday, April 22, 2009 – Spain vs Italy