Just read a report that some Greeks in Thessaloniki are protesting the opening of a goldmine in their area which is being operated by a Canadian company??? I hadn’t heard about this before. I wish I wasn’t too old to apply for a job there, I absolutely love Greece. The week before this protest there was a rally in support of the gold mine because it will produce something like 1,200 jobs
This made me think of a story; first of all you should know that in the UK we call Sunchokes by the name Jerusalem Artichokes. In appearance they look a bit like knobbly potatoes. As a young woman, I was staying with a family in France and got talking with Madame about food, something we did often. She knew what artichokes (artichauds) were but couldn’t understand me when I described Jerusalem Artichokes as Artichauds Juif, Jewish Artichokes!! After lots of discussion, explanation, attempted description, all in French you understand, she finally realised I was talking about Topinambours which is their name in French. That was like another time when I was trying to describe a lace dress and didn’t know the word for lace so described it as ‘string with holes’. I didn’t know the word for thread either at the time. Lace is dentelles if you wish to know.
Sunchoke-Kale Hash with FarroContributed by Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo
Comfort food is rarely healthy, or vegetarian. This soul-satisfying winter hash is both. The recipe from F&W Best New Chefs 2009 Jon Shook and Vinny Dotolo, of Animal and Son of a Gun in Los Angeles, combines crispy sunchokes, silky oyster mushrooms, tender kale and chewy farro. It’s wonderful served with grilled steak or on its own as a meatless main course.
- 3/4 cup farro
- 2 1/2 pounds large sunchokes, peeled and cut into 2-inch pieces
- 1 pound Tuscan kale, tough stems discarded
- 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil blended with 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil
- 1 small red onion, sliced 1/4 inch thick
- 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1/2 pound oyster mushrooms, halved if large
- Freshly ground pepper
- In a medium saucepan, cover the farro with 2 inches of water. Bring to a boil, cover and cook over low heat until the farro is tender, about 25 minutes. Drain the farro.
- Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, cover the sunchokes with water and add a pinch of salt. Boil until the sunchokes are tender, 10 minutes; drain. Slice the sunchokes 1/4 inch thick.
- Fill the large saucepan with water and bring to a boil. Add the Tuscan kale and cook until just tender, about 3 minutes. Drain the kale and let cool slightly. Squeeze out any excess liquid from the kale leaves and then coarsely chop them.
- In a small skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of the blended oil. Add the red onion and a pinch of salt and cook over moderately low heat, stirring occasionally, until browned, about 12 minutes.
- In a nonstick skillet, melt the butter in 2 tablespoons of the blended oil. Add the sunchokes in an even layer and cook over high heat until browned on the bottom, about 3 minutes. Turn the sunchokes, reduce the heat to moderately high and continue cooking until starting to brown, about 2 minutes. Push the sunchokes to the side of the skillet.
- Add 1 more tablespoon of the oil and the oyster mushrooms. Season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat until browned, 3 minutes. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil along with the farro, kale and onion and cook, stirring, until hot. Season with salt and pepper and serve.
Have a great day