Blogging: One Bite at a Time

About a year and a half ago, I started this blog. It wasn't my idea, really. I attended the Maui Writer's conference for an intensive, ten-day writing retreat and this was my homework assignment. Being the *good* student that I am, I promptly got myself to Blogger and set up the template for what you see today.

I wasn't sure about the world of blogging, but it was {and still is} a practice that allows me to nourish and nurture my two loves, food and writing. When I finally realized no one was looking or listening to what I had to say, it was a bit of a relief. But, like good food, at some point I found I wanted to share it with others.

Today, blogging has found its way into the mainstream and I'm happy to say that I am wholeheartedly enjoying its offerings, as both writer and reader. There are hundreds of food blogs now out in the world. Some of my foodie favorites are SmittenKitchen, 101cookbooks, orangette, doriegreenspan, and The Italian Dish. These woman are a few of the superstars of food blogging, and a great inspiration for me. They are as much storytellers as food writers, offering all kinds of delicious and interesting tidbits.

Social media is changing by the keystroke, and even though I'm running at a ridiculous pace, I feel like I'm still seriously lagging behind. I like the idea of concise and pithy thoughts, but am really more of a rambling-writer type. Also: I love hearing from you. It seriously thrills me when you leave a comment, share an idea or just drop by to say hello. So, enough rambling now, here's some real sustenance...

This stew is delicious on a cool night. The slow simmering makes the lamb incredibly tender. {You can also substitute with chicken thighs or root veggies.}

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 pounds boneless shoulder of lamb, cut into 2" cubes {or 8 chicken thighs}
1 onion, chopped
1 cup chopped carrots
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1 tablespoon chopped rosemary
1 cup Artichoke Lemon Pesto
4 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley
kosher salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste.

In a large, heavy sauté pan, heat 3 tablespoons olive oil over medium-high heat until hot. Cook the lamb on both sides until browned and caramelized. Remove and set aside the lamb and add the remaining oil to pan.

Once the oil is heated, add the onion, carrots, garlic and rosemary, and sauté until soft (about 10 minutes). Add the set-aside lamb, artichoke lemon pesto, broth and parsley. Bring to a gentle simmer, scraping up the bits periodically, and cover and cook, continuing to simmer over low heat for about 1½ hours, until the meat is tender.

You can eat the stew as is, or serve with rosemary polenta, butternut squash puree or fregola Sardinian couscous.

Serves four to six.

copyright 2009 Alisa Barry


Jennifer Johnson said...

Forget the concise and pithy comments. They are simply a symptom of our culture's loss of spirit and presence. I love what you're doing. Thanks for reminding us all to slow down, be more present, and savor flavorful food!

The Italian Dish said...

Grazie, Alisa! You are an inspiration. (I do love your Artichoke Lemon Pesto). You need a Twitter badge on your front page! I just found out you were tweeting and now I'm following you.