Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Summer Heirloom Tomato Salad!

Nice and simple!

As we approach the one month mark with no gas in my building I've been branching out on recipes that don't require a stovetop or oven.  I'm lucky that this happened in the summer because there delicious alternatives that require no cooking at all.  Topping the list is heirloom tomatoes.

Colorful deliciousness

My friends Bobby and Holly have a house in upstate NY.  They have a few acres of property - more than enough to have a garden.  This year they had a bumper crop of heirloom tomatoes and they were nice enough to give me a bagful of heirloom tomatoes, but Japanese eggplant and zucchini as well.  The New York Times published an article today about the crop of heirloom tomatoes this season.  The oppressive heat we've suffered through this summer and the relatively small amount of rain are the perfect conditions for growing tomatoes.

Heirloom tomato with fresh chopped garlic

 Today for lunch I chopped one of the tomatoes into eights.  I diced a fresh bulb of garlic from the Farmer's Market.  I drizzled extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar on top and I was good to go!

You can also serve with arugula and basil

Even if the gas were working I'd still opt for a delicious tomato salad served at room temperature.  Though there should be an abundant supply, it's still a short season.  Head to your Farmer's Market and take advantage while you can! 


1 medium heirloom tomato cut into rings or into eighths
1/2 clove of garlic minced
1 tspn extra virgin olive oil
1 tspn balsamic or champagne vinegar (optional)


Place tomato on plate
Sprinkle minced garlic
drizzle with oil and vinegar
Season with sea salt and pepper


Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Gas Leak!

Man the hatches!

About three weeks ago upon coming home from work and waiting for the elevator, I noticed a sign.  It said that our building had a gas leak and that for the time being there is no hot water, no gas for the stoves and ovens, no working dryers in the laundry room because they are also powered by gas.

The Cottage has free wine

The Chinese restaurant called The Cottage on the ground floor of my building, aka "room service" was closed for about a week. My friends who visit from outside of NYC love going to The Cottage because they serve free wine.  It comes from a box.  It gives you a headache the next day.  But it's free! 

A thing of the past?

The hot water was out for about 5 days.  I didn't mind this so much as I shower every day at the gym.  Washing dishes was the worst part of that.  The dryers in the laundry room were the next to be fixed. But I am told by people who have been through this, that it can take months to find the source of the gas leak and repair it.  Granted, I'm grateful our building didn't blow up, but months without a stove sounds a bit daunting.  

George Foreman grill to the rescue!

You may have read my recent posting that I got a Groupon offer for a George Foreman grill and took advantage of it.  Thank goodness.  While my neighbors are paying a fortune on delivery, I've been grilling up a storm over the past weeks.  While I can't wait to vary my meals by roasting asparagus in an actual oven and cooking pasta on the stovetop instead of a hot plate, I've got to say I can still cook a variety of things on the grill quickly, and cleanup is very easy. 

Monkfish on the grill!

So stay tuned for some summer grilling recipes.  If you don't have an indoor grill most of the dishes can be made using a cast iron skillet on the stovetop.  That is, unless your building has a gas leak too!