Burratta mozzarella (sp?) does for cheese what Chuao does for hot chocolate. I love having my little bro. around; I get to indulge any foodie dreams I have when he's here. Today we ventured off on a quest for Chino Farms veggies (so good I've even seen chic places in New York brag about having them and were mentioned in a London Vogue I picked up when I did my study abroad). It's ten minutes from my house through winding roads draped with eucalyptus. But, alas, it was closed. again. for the third time. It's hours are short, it closes for weeks during the holidays, and was rained out today so to make up for the disappointment, I suggested the new gourmet cheese shop nearby. John has been all through Little Italy in NY, and through tons of gourmet shops looking for Burratta, and has only managed to find one place that sells it so he was pretty skeptical. We tried anyway. Success. We also picked up some truffled salt- a fantastic find- and then we headed out to track down some decent tomatoes at Harvest Ranch Markets (they often buy from Chino farms) and got lucky on an incredible bruise-colored lumpy heirloom tomato (tastes better than it sounds). Add some good olive oil, fresh basil, kosher salt, fresh cracked pepper, and it was a little bit o heaven on a rainy afternoon. A hint: let the cheese warm up a bit before serving so it sort of spills all over your tongue with it's milky goodness. It's been a nice day.
Actually, it's been a nice few weeks thanks to my baby bro. The second half of this year has hit lows not rivaled since those unfortunate junior high days, but as the year closed up and a new began again, things have been good. John's right: food made with love can make life so so so much better.
PS- My borscht turned out really really good. I think I may have won the competition.
PPS- Jerry Maguire was on last night. I'd forgotten how much I love that movie.