New ingredients are the best Jerry…the best! Platforms for new textures and flavors beget new textures and flavors. As soon as I pull in a new ingredient, old standbys become fresh fodder for new avenues. Stumbled upon these barrel cactus fruits and whipped them into a “Desert Salad” that was high on interest and flavor. Along with the cactus, which I boiled in lightly salted water until tender then nipped the tops. I tossed in 4 different types of date, pickled radish and boiled peanuts; dressed with lime/peanut water vinaigrette.
Along with the cactus and dates, I lucked out on my first green peanuts, which has been on my mind. Boiled peanuts can easily become a new obsession, after all, I love beans and I love peanuts and I love simple. I boiled them with water, salt, sugar, toasted/charred dried red chile, vinegar, garlic and onion. So good and addictive. Unfortunately I didn’t make anymore at home as I underestimated green peanuts perishability. I also wanted to touch on a trip I took to the Colorado river recently. On our way there we passed some gigantic date farms which plugged dates into my brain for a week before I came upon my salad dates; hence the “Desert Salad” theme. The river also supplied some tasty treats. The kids fished and pulled in some little Blue Gills. The next day we sauteed up the little fillets and they where shockingly delicious…like whoa!