‘April is the cruelest month.’ T.S.Eliot said so. April is all about betrayal. You start trusting that things are going to get warm and grow and bloom and then, Bam!, 50 mile an hour winds that are ripping trees out of the ground and cold weather again with snow. April stinks.
It takes a lot of fortitude to survive the vagaries of April. Fortitude and mozzarella.
Fortitude, mozzarella and olive oil.
Ok, maybe fortitude, mozzarella, olive oil and dipping herbs.
Fresh Mozzarella with Olive Oil and Dipping Herbs
Fresh mozzarella is easy to make. Do yourself a favor, fork out a few bucks and buy the 30 Minute Mozzarella & Ricotta Kit from New England Cheesemaking. For $24.95, you’ll have enough to make 30 batches (30 lbs). And it really only takes 30 minutes. Really. The best money I ever spent on cheese…so far…
If K2 had her way, we’d have mama mozzarella every day, for every meal.
Once you have your mozzarella made, you need something fabulous to eat it with. Like some good quality olive oil and some dipping herbs.
We first encountered dipping herbs at a lovely restaurant in town. When they brought the bread to the table, they also brought out little dishes of olive oil into which they put spoonfuls of oil infused herbs. They told us it was for dipping.
As we are very obliging folks, we dipped and it was love at first dip. An enduring, everlasting kind of love. The kind of love that causes one to weep with anguish when parted from the object of one’s affection. Obviously, there was only one thing to do. One had to go home and concoct one’s own recipe.
And so one did. And now one is going to share it with you here. Trust me, April will never be the same.
How to make Robin’s Dipping Herbs:
1/4 cup rosemary crushed (not powdered)
1/4 cup thyme
1/4 cup oregano
1/4 cup basil, optional
1/4 teaspoon fresh black pepper, ground
1 Tablespoon salt
1 Tablespoon red pepper flakes
Use dried herbs so you can mix a bunch up and store it.
The rosemary needs to be crushed because eating whole rosemary is a little like eating splinters. If all you have is whole rosemary, then use half again as much rosemary and toss the whole mess into a grinder or food processor for a minute or two until the rosemary is crushed to a manageable size.
To serve, put a teaspoon of dipping herbs into a small dish and pour a tablespoon or so of olive oil over it. Add more oil or herb to taste. Dip your bread or cheese into it.
Experience will help you adjust the flavors in the next batch to suit you better–more or less salt, pepper, etc.
Tip: If you love this enough to eat it all quickly, it’s great if you make the mix and then add enough olive oil to cover it all. Stir it in and let it sit. The herb really infuses the oil, which helps meld the flavors. It’ll keep well for a couple of weeks in the fridge. Just add more oil when you’re ready to serve it.
Get the handy print page and save this to your recipe box here:
Robin’s Dipping Herbs.
Robin from Rurification blogs at Rurification.
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