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What's For Dinner? Part XLVII

boyzoma Sep 12, 2010 06:26 AM

Wow - over 200 again just since Labor Day. Lots of good chow out there. So that said, what are you making for dinner?

  1. boyzoma Sep 12, 2010 06:32 AM

    Last night we went to dinner with MIL. Of course it was her favorite steak house. We all decided to order the bone-in rib-eye. Wow. It was like a half slab of beef on a plate! Sooooo good though. Added to that, was some onion rings to start with a veggie tray, a nice salad (next time dressing will be on the side - way over dressed), then the steak and a baked potato. Ice cream for desert. Needless to say, we all brought home steak to eat later this week.

    So tonight will be some BBQ chicken, corn on the cob and I'll make a macaroni salad, which for some reason I have not made lately. Have some nice soft rolls to go with it too.

    1 Reply
    1. re: boyzoma
      boyzoma Sep 12, 2010 11:58 PM

      I have to say - I LOVE my side burner on my gas grill. I decided not to heat up the house and boiled the eggs for the salad on the BBQ, then while those cooled, I cooked the pasta for the salad. Once those were done, rinsed the pasta, pealed the eggs. Diced the eggs, added diced dill pickles, celery, green onion, pimento, shredded cheese, s&p, Best Foods Mayo, Dijon mustard and shredded carrots. DH said it was the best he has ever had. Who knew? He said it was the combo of the pickles, pimento, celery and cheese that made the difference.

    2. othervoice Sep 12, 2010 07:12 AM

      Well, they're predicting rain tonight so I thought a good old fashioned Chicken Pot Pie would hit the spot. I bake mine in a 9x13 pan so there's plenty to go around. It's one of everyone's favorites at my house.

      1 Reply
      1. re: othervoice
        ChristinaMason Sep 12, 2010 03:12 PM

        mmm, that sounds great. do you use pie crust, puff pastry, or biscuit topping?

      2. LindaWhit Sep 12, 2010 07:32 AM

        It's cool and gloomy out, and I suspect we'll get some rain this afternoon or evening. I'm have brunch with friends I haven't seen for several months, and then will come home and make a meat loaf. Not sure how; I've got some caramelized onions I could add to the ground beef/pork mix, but I also have some great herbed goat cheese I could layer between two patties of the meat mixture as well. We'll see what I'm in the mood for later.

        Sour cream mashed potatoes and peas and some of the gazillion carrots I have in my veggie drawer cut up and cooked with the peas.

        There WILL be meat loaf sandwiches for work lunches. :-D

        1. mamachef Sep 12, 2010 08:10 AM

          Comfort food for us, boyzoma. Oven-roasted Turkey breast, herbed gravy, garlic mash and vegies. I froze cranberries last year and they need to go, so a quick chutney with some golden raisins. I have outstanding dill bread to put it on and ladle it all over, and that, my friends, is dinner today.

          6 Replies
          1. re: mamachef
            boyzoma Sep 12, 2010 08:13 AM

            That sounds wonderful. I love making turkey when there is no "holiday" requirement!

            1. re: mamachef
              ChristinaMason Sep 12, 2010 03:13 PM

              tell us more about that dill bread, please.

              1. re: ChristinaMason
                mamachef Sep 12, 2010 03:52 PM

                I do an oh-so-basic challah, add dill weed and a bit of celery seed to the dough, and sprinkle same on top w/ a little crushed kosher salt. Do you need a challah recipe?

                1. re: mamachef
                  ChristinaMason Sep 12, 2010 08:24 PM

                  sure! that sounds good. could you give approximate measurements for your add-ins?

                  1. re: ChristinaMason
                    mamachef Sep 13, 2010 05:09 AM

                    Hi Christina!! Here's the basic Challah I use; very easy. I add to the base 2 tsp. dill weed and 1 tsp. crushed celery seed or weed, and crush 2 t. kosher salt w/ same mixture to use for topping the egg glaze atop the bread.
                    1&1/2 c. water, warm
                    1/2 c. honey
                    1 T. oil
                    4 eggs, lightly beaten
                    1&1/2 t. salt
                    1 T. sugar
                    2 tsp. instant active dry yeast
                    5 cups flour, plus additional (8-9 cups usually).
                    Additional herbs/spices, above
                    1 egg. beaten with 1 t. water for glazing
                    Mix all ing. in v. lg. bow. Add additional flour to make soft dough; knead approx. 10 minutes. oil and set aside in warm place for an hour and a half for the first rise (let it nearly double.) Punch down when rise is complete. Divide into 8 equal balls and form each ball into a rope. Use 4 ropes per braid to form two loaves. Let loaves rise another 35 minutes or so. Glaze with egg wash and sprinkle herbs on top: bake 325 for about 35-40 minutes. This is so good, like a kinda sweet, herby brioche. It was soooo good under our hot turkey sandwiches. I applaud you for even thinking about baking, what with you being in a new place and all!

                    1. re: mamachef
                      ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 07:56 PM

                      danke!

            2. linguafood Sep 12, 2010 09:33 AM

              It's been raining here since last night, so no grilled whole trout for a while >sigh<

              Instead, and thanks to Harters for the inspiration in the last thread, I'm gonna try my hand at imam biyaldi (stuffed eggplant). Not sure yet whether it will be with or w/out meat. Probably without, tho.

              Side will be a cuke salad.

              3 Replies
              1. re: linguafood
                ChristinaMason Sep 12, 2010 03:15 PM

                That sounds good. I may copy you (and Harters) this week; I've been making to try a recipe I've got.

                1. re: ChristinaMason
                  ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:27 PM

                  < I've been making to try a recipe I've got.>

                  What the hell kind of English was this? LOL. I need grammar-check.

                2. re: linguafood
                  h
                  Harters Sep 13, 2010 02:40 AM

                  Actually we do a low fat version of imam bayeldi as part of a meze - it's better than this latest try., or as a starter.

                  Slices of aubergine get poached in flavoured tomato juice (say, passata flavoured with garlic, lemon, mint). Towards the end, the heat gets turned up so the juice reduces to something quite sticky. The slices cool in that (to room temperature).

                  Fry some onion, add in soem chopped tomato, pine-nuts, raisins/currants/sultanas, and lots of parsley. Heat through for a few minutes. Leave that to cool then use as a topping for the slices.

                3. lrostron Sep 12, 2010 10:03 AM

                  We're rather gloomy here today, and since it's a football day for the hubby, which means little to no chores or errands, I'm doing a beef stew with dumplings. He wants game snacks, and I'm thinking about something somewhat healthful for the afternoon. Maybe crudites and a green goddess dip.

                  1 Reply
                  1. re: lrostron
                    ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:28 PM

                    that sounds quite good! what kind of dumplings do you make?

                  2. h
                    Harters Sep 12, 2010 10:17 AM

                    As we speak, chunks of organic pork shoulder are getting braised in Shaohsing rice wine, vegetable stock, soy sauce, sliced ginger garlic & chilli, and spring onions. There'll be boiled rice and steamed pak choy alongside.

                    1 Reply
                    1. re: Harters
                      ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:28 PM

                      yum, how did it turn out? can you explain your method a bit more?

                    2. nomadchowwoman Sep 12, 2010 11:11 AM

                      Feeling pretty smug about getting that fridge and freeze emptied. Scavenged about and came up w/makings for a bolognese sauce: some ground pork, ground beef, three leftover pork ribs, pancetta, a bit of prosciutto, a stray carrot, the remains of a can of tomatoes(from which I'd needed only two earlier in the week), both a parmigiano reggiano and a pecorino romano rind (hot damn!). Added a chopped onion, another can of tomatoes, and the sauce is bubbling away. I also have a large ball of (now frozen) fresh mozzarella and some (now frozen) fresh pasta sheets so lasagna is a possibility, but the tropical temperatures make that seem like a pretty wacky proposition. OTOH, a dish of lasagna in the fridge would be a good thing for DH when I leave town in a few days.
                      If not lasagna, we will have bolognese over pasta tonight and a nice fresh salad of green leaf lettuce, tomato, cucumber, red onion, olives, feta, and vinaigrette--which will almost take care of the crisper.

                      4 Replies
                      1. re: nomadchowwoman
                        Cherylptw Sep 12, 2010 08:30 PM

                        That sauce sounds great NCW...I'm going to have to make some this week...

                        This morning I put a beef chuck roast in the oven seasoned with cajun spices. Nearly towards the middle of cooking, I added potatoes, carrots and onions then deglazed with beef stock for a pan sauce. Braised cabbage to go along with it.

                        1. re: Cherylptw
                          nomadchowwoman Sep 13, 2010 06:03 AM

                          Mmmm. Sounds like you're getting the cool weather cooking bug, too, Cheryl--but maybe you're getting actual cool weather too!

                          1. re: nomadchowwoman
                            Cherylptw Sep 13, 2010 08:05 PM

                            It's cooling off a bit here, but I've been wanting warm comfort food for a few weeks now.

                        2. re: nomadchowwoman
                          ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:29 PM

                          bolognese ranks as one of my DH's fave at-home meals. yours sounds pretty good!

                        3. linguafood Sep 12, 2010 03:08 PM

                          Change of plans, actually.... I forgot about the crisp green beans I had in the fridge, so I'm making my first salade Niçoise ever: ruby gold potatoes, awesome green beans, paper-thin red onion slices, capers, olives, tomatoes in a Dijon vinaigrette, topped with quick-seared tuna, sliced thinly.

                          Hungry now.

                          1. mariacarmen Sep 12, 2010 03:17 PM

                            Back from fantastic Russian River cottage weekend, with some leftover thai marinated chicken (shrimp all got et), and someone brought some garlic studded french bread which i snagged, so i think i'll make grilled sandwiches with the chicken and some leftover teleme, and also i took 5 ears of corn that we didn't use, so I think i'll do that Mark Ruhlman(?) prep of a sort of corn custard with butter. Can't believe i'm still hungry after a weekend of such over-indulgence, but apparently i've primed the pump.

                            2 Replies
                            1. re: mariacarmen
                              nomadchowwoman Sep 13, 2010 06:06 AM

                              Yeah, that overindulging never works to suppress my appetite either, MC. Corn custard w/butter sounds delicious--from one of Ruhlman's books?

                              1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 09:14 AM

                                It was posted on the last thread, I believe, and sorry, I can't remember by who - but it's called baked buttered corn, here's the link: http://ruhlman.com/2010/09/baked-butt.... it was really good, although my oven is very erratic and it was difficult to keep it at 400 degrees for 45 mins. - it keeps wanting to get hotter, so i had to keep opening the oven and turning it down. so my batch turned out a little less custardy, but the sugars in the corn formed these deliciously sweet, almost caramel-ly "skins". yum!

                            2. m
                              MAH Sep 12, 2010 06:43 PM

                              Indian lamb curry with spinach (lamb saag), made in the slow cooker. So easy and really delicious. Wonderful to come home to the complex aromas -- football and good indian food. terrific start to fall.

                              2 Replies
                              1. re: MAH
                                Vetter Sep 13, 2010 10:14 PM

                                Hi MAH, can you post a quick recipe? I love making saag paneer, but I've never dared using the slow cooker for it! I'd love to have an excuse to eat spinach and lamb on a worknight...

                                1. re: Vetter
                                  m
                                  MAH Sep 15, 2010 11:16 AM

                                  Here it is.

                                  2.5- 3 lb shanks (3, slightly less than 1 lb each), trimmed of excess fat and seasoned generously w/salt & pepper

                                  1 15 oz can crushed tomatoes
                                  1.5 c chicken stock
                                  2 cinnamon sticks
                                  1 potato

                                  Spice Paste
                                  1 large onion
                                  5-6 cloves of garlic, chopped
                                  1 T fresh ginger paste
                                  2 t ground cumin
                                  2 t ground coriander
                                  1/2 t turmeric
                                  1/2 t garam masala
                                  1/8 t red chili powder
                                  3 T curry powder (Penzey's rogan josh blend)
                                  1 t salt

                                  Blend in food processor, set aside.

                                  Brown lamb shanks in 1T EVOO on all sides in slow cooker insert or in dutch oven on stove. Remove lamb. Add blended spice paste and sauté for 5 mins or so. Add slightly less than 1 15 oz. can of crushed tomatoes. Add 1 1/2 c homemade chicken stock. Add lamb shanks back into dutch oven, add 1-2 whole cinnamon sticks, test for salt.

                                  Remove from stove and add insert to slow cooker. cook on high for 4 hours. (if using a Dutch oven I'd continue the braise in a 300 degree oven for 3 hours) At 1 hr remaining on the slow cooker time, add 1 russet potato, chopped in big chunks (or halved new potatoes). After the remaining cooking time has elapsed, remove meat from shank bones and return to sauce. Keep on warm until ready to serve and allow to thicken. At this point, I add 10 oz of fresh spinach leaves and allow them to wilt into the curry. Sometimes I leave out the potato if adding spinach, but have also added both and enjoyed it immensely.

                              2. ChristinaMason Sep 12, 2010 08:29 PM

                                found some beef tenderloin end pieces on quick sale, so made beef stroganoff. I thought it was just OK, but DH was happy and said it "hit the spot." We're in new kitchen now with nary a cutting board or sharp knife in sight. Grr.

                                6 Replies
                                1. re: ChristinaMason
                                  eight_inch_pestle Sep 13, 2010 01:05 AM

                                  A dearth of decent supplies stinks, that's all there is to it. Do you have a preferred recipe for beef stroganoff? Been meaning to add that to the repertoire, as the gf loves the stuff.

                                  1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                    ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:16 PM

                                    My version last night was extremely no-frills: quickly seasoned and seared around 3/4 lb. of tenderloin on all sides in a hot pan and removed to rest. Lightly browned a finely diced 1/2 a sweet onion in some margarine (my heart thanks me) and about 10 sliced crimini mushrooms. Added three minced cloves of garlic and stirred until golden. In went about 3/4 c. beef broth (Better Than Bullion) and a splash of balsamic, which were cooked down. I tempered 1 c. of full-fat sour cream (heart curses me) and added that to the mix, along with the tenderloin cut into thin strips against the grain. Seasoned with lots of black pepper, some salt, and heated through before serving over surprisingly good WW rotini.

                                    I think it was lacking Worcestershire sauce, but luckily, no on else cared.

                                    1. re: ChristinaMason
                                      eight_inch_pestle Sep 13, 2010 08:21 PM

                                      Thanks!

                                      1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                        ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:32 PM

                                        Here's another basic version: http://simplyrecipes.com/recipes/beef...

                                  2. re: ChristinaMason
                                    nomadchowwoman Sep 13, 2010 06:09 AM

                                    CM, you should write a book about your kitchen adventures. I find your kitchen moves--and your adapting--so intriguing.
                                    Love beef stroganoff too. My SIL makes the best; mine never comes out as well, even w/her recipe.

                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                      ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:08 PM

                                      Working title would be "9x9: or how I survived 9 months in 9 different kitchens." (Yes, I actually counted)

                                      Very much looking forward to this nomad period finally coming to an end, hopefully in October. Relocating from abroad blows. I can't wait to set up my permanent kitchen.

                                  3. eight_inch_pestle Sep 13, 2010 12:53 AM

                                    Rubbed a bone-in lamb shoulder with a mixture of cayenne, ground ginger, cinnamon, crushed cloves, sea salt, and freshly ground white pepper. Pulled out the nutmeg but forgot to grate it in. Browned the lamb off on all sides in a film of olive oil. Pulled out the meat to deglaze the pan with a cup or two of cabernet, made a semi-submersed bed of rosemary sprigs and maybe a dozen unpeeled garlic gloves and returned the meat to the pan. Covered tightly and cooked very gently for about four hours, turning every 30 minutes or so. Pulled out the meat, strained the pan juices, and threw the liquid in the freezer to separate the fat before reducing with a handful of chopped dates. Stirred in some freshly minced rosemary, "mounded" the sauce with cubes of cold butter, and ate meat and sauce over mashed yukon golds with a simple side of roasted turnips and carrots. Must exercise tomorrow.

                                    9 Replies
                                    1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                      mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 02:07 AM

                                      oh my god, i have to work out just from reading that! that sound fantastic. i had just read some other post about slow cooking lamb shoulder.... i've only worked with leg of lamb and lamb chops, not a whole shoulder piece...... and just a question, because i don't know...is it "mounded" or "mounted"? or were you being your usual witty self?

                                      1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                        LindaWhit Sep 13, 2010 09:41 AM

                                        Sounds SERIOUSLY good, eip! But just a little point of order? The word you want to use is "mounted" when you add the cold butter to the liquid for a gravy/sauce.

                                        ETA after I read mariacarmen's comment above - if you were being witty, my apologies. :-)

                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                          eight_inch_pestle Sep 13, 2010 01:00 PM

                                          Well, apparently I was only _trying_ to be witty, since it obviously didn't come off. What I get for posting so late, but I find I tend to forget details (or forget to post altogether) if I wait until the next day...

                                          1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                            LindaWhit Sep 13, 2010 01:19 PM

                                            Well, it STILL sounds heavenly - I hope it tasted as good as it sounds! I mean - it's LAMB, fer cryin' out loud! :-)

                                            1. re: LindaWhit
                                              eight_inch_pestle Sep 13, 2010 08:16 PM

                                              Thanks! It was quite good, altho I definitely missed the nutmeg. I also hadn't cooked a bone-in shoulder in forever, and never without a recipe, so used a pretty restrained hand with the spices. Next time I'll really crust the snot out of the thing.

                                              1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                LindaWhit Sep 14, 2010 02:04 PM

                                                Next time I'll really crust the snot out of the thing.
                                                ~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                I love the way we can describe cooking methods here at times. ;-D

                                                1. re: LindaWhit
                                                  boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 02:07 PM

                                                  Next time I'll really crust the snot out of the thing.
                                                  ~~~~~~~~~~~

                                                  I think I saw that in the back of a cookbook one time. It's a technical term. Rates right up there with "cooking" the snot out of the thing.

                                                  1. re: boyzoma
                                                    LindaWhit Sep 14, 2010 04:01 PM

                                                    Well, CRUSTING the snot and COOKING the snot out of things are two completely different methods - I believe one is used by Panko Crusters, and the other is used by Moms Who Can't Cook. ;-)

                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                      boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 04:03 PM

                                                      LW - LOL - I love this site. I get some of my best laughs here! Thanks for that!

                                      2. mamachef Sep 13, 2010 05:13 AM

                                        Tonight we're having some real old-country food. I don't even know the name, but it's braised chicken served with a mashup of sweet and white potatoes and pan gravy. I'll also do some red cabbage with bacon and plums and a bit of red wine and caraway seed. My Mr.'s having oral surgery this afternoon, so the mash should work for him, but now that I think about it I'd better leave those caraway seeds out of the cabbage, and not make it super-pungent.

                                        10 Replies
                                        1. re: mamachef
                                          nomadchowwoman Sep 13, 2010 06:13 AM

                                          That sounds delicious--hope Mr. Mamachef is able to eat b/c I sure wouldn't want to miss that. (But, yeah, probably best to leave out those caraway seeds.)

                                          1. re: nomadchowwoman
                                            mamachef Sep 13, 2010 06:44 AM

                                            "Kuerbiis Staampf" is the chicken dish name, but at home it got translated to "Chicken Stuff", which is how I've always known it. Yeah, it's a go on the mash: I have a feeling he'll need something in his tummy once the Vicodin starts to kick in. Now he's specifically asking for haluski with green cabbage and sour cream. We'll see how he REALLY feels later. : )

                                            1. re: mamachef
                                              mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 09:20 AM

                                              ooh, just looked up haluski - that sounds sooooo comforting - no wonder he wants that! do you have your own recipe, do you make the noodles or do you use prepared egg noodles?

                                              1. re: mariacarmen
                                                mamachef Sep 13, 2010 09:53 AM

                                                Mariacarmen, it depends on how much time I have. I do enjoy making my own egg noodles, but sometimes not enough hours in the day. I do have a recipe for you: a lot of Haluskis are baked, but I use a crockpot to make my version:
                                                1 lg. onion, chopped coarsely
                                                1/2 lg. green cabbage, shredded
                                                2 carrots, peeled and chunked
                                                6 peppercorns
                                                3 bayleaves
                                                salt
                                                pepper
                                                4-6 cups chicken, vegie or beef stock
                                                Combine all ingredients and a bit of salt and pepper in crockpot. Add enough stock or water (stock's better) to cover, and let go anywere from 5-8 hours, until very soft and melty and delicious. Serve over eggnoodles w/ the following:
                                                1/2 c. sour cream or low-fat yogurt
                                                2 T. dry white wine
                                                2 tsp. sweet paprika (though I've used smoked w/ great results)
                                                1/2 tsp. salt.
                                                Mix; dollop over cabbage and noodles. This is awesome to prep. for the night before, throw together and split for the day. We can make a full meal on it, but I usually side it with some roast chicken or pork tenderloin that I've "schnitzeled", because Mr. is a member of the "must have meat" club.

                                                1. re: mamachef
                                                  mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 10:08 AM

                                                  Thanks!! this sounds really good, i'm definitely going to try it. And I agree, a nice roast chicken would go well with it - my BF is also a "what, no meat?" kinda guy!

                                                  1. re: mamachef
                                                    ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:21 PM

                                                    oh yum!! what's the origin of the dish?

                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                      mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 09:48 PM

                                                      i looked it up and it said Slovenian and Polish...

                                                      1. re: mariacarmen
                                                        mamachef Sep 15, 2010 07:07 AM

                                                        Dingdingding! It's Polish as can be, although not confined there. Eastern European is probably the best catchall.

                                                        1. re: mamachef
                                                          JungMann Sep 15, 2010 07:27 AM

                                                          The Kuerbiis Staampf is Polish? The name looks Southern German to me --- I would've thought it was mashed pumpkin.

                                                          1. re: JungMann
                                                            mamachef Sep 15, 2010 07:29 AM

                                                            no, the chicken is German; the haluska is Polish. And it did originate w/ mashed pumpkin, but my family revised and uses sweet potatoes; less "string" in the texture.

                                          2. Perilagu Khan Sep 13, 2010 07:13 AM

                                            Tortellini en brodo, garlic bread, green salad.

                                            1. h
                                              Harters Sep 13, 2010 08:00 AM

                                              The first of two pre-holiday fridge clearouts will see pork & leek sausages being oven cooked. Alongside, a sweet potato gratin (Ottolenghi cookbook) and what can only be described as an excess of peas. Yes, there was a BOGOF which "someone" took advantage of without any consideration for the fact that we ain't going to be here to eat 'em.

                                              There's also half a pattypan squash that has to figure somehow unless the mice that live in the compst heap are going to get a feast.

                                              Tomorrow, brown gloop from the freezer in the form of a ragu to go with pasta.

                                              And then the only cooking I intend for the following fortnight runs to slapping a lamb steak in a frying pan and opening a bag of salad.

                                              11 Replies
                                              1. re: Harters
                                                LindaWhit Sep 13, 2010 09:44 AM

                                                And then the only cooking I intend for the following fortnight runs to slapping a lamb steak in a frying pan and opening a bag of salad.
                                                ~~~~~~~
                                                WHAT? Are you going on holiday again? Or is Mrs. H leaving for a bit and you're going to be brown-glooping it for the next two weeks?

                                                1. re: LindaWhit
                                                  h
                                                  Harters Sep 13, 2010 10:42 AM

                                                  Holiday again, Linda. Benefit of being retired people. This trip, to Cyprus, is a second attempt - we had originally booked to go last April but had to cancel due to J's health problems (a matter which we we still battle with the travel insurance company). I'm looking forward to 20 course restaurant meze meals

                                                  Oh, and just to add to any envy you may be harbouring (LOL), our holiday itinerary after this currently runs to a couple of days in London in December (cue envy from buttertart), two weeks in Tenerife in early January; a week in Belgium/France in April and nearly 3 weeks in South Africa in September. There's also been talk of a few days in Rome and a couple of days in Madrid. And we normally try to fit in a week's break somewhere here in the UK in June - trying to catch that one week that forms summer here. It's a hard life, innit!

                                                  1. re: Harters
                                                    buttertart Sep 13, 2010 10:57 AM

                                                    I'll come along on the Belgium/France too, and ZA sounds like a treat indeed...what a way to take advantage of retirement!

                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                      h
                                                      Harters Sep 13, 2010 11:07 AM

                                                      Nice few days in Belgium/France - you'd get to eat in some quiet country bistros - and visit an awful lot of Great War cemeteries - we usually eat a picnic lunch in one (luckily herself likes wandering round them while I'm doing my research photography). And ZA will indeed be fab - we're doing an escorted tour (for which otherwise a second mortgage would have been required) - not usually our thing but just seemed a practical way to cram everything in.

                                                      Must get on with the packing........

                                                      1. re: Harters
                                                        buttertart Sep 13, 2010 11:09 AM

                                                        Hmmpf...jealous jealous...

                                                        1. re: Harters
                                                          mamachef Sep 13, 2010 11:29 AM

                                                          So jealous you can see it all over my jealous green face, Harters.

                                                          1. re: mamachef
                                                            h
                                                            Harters Sep 13, 2010 12:42 PM

                                                            So, here's your very quick challenge, folks.

                                                            We'll be in Cyprus for 2 weeks in a rented apartment - very warm Mediterranean climate, so there should be good fruit and veg. Don't want to eat out every night as it gets boring (and fattening - betcha never thought you'd hear me say that).

                                                            So, let's have some ideas for dinners. There's considerations. Need to be easy, minimal effort things. Need to not have us have to buy loads of ingredients that we then have to leave there - so no multi-spice dishes and so on. Need to be something that will be a change from the sort of steak/potato/salad meal you get in tourist restaurants the world over (my attempts to get good resto reccs from Chowhound or egullet have fallen on deaf ears - so I am left with hopefully having picked the best of the lot mentioned on various Cyprus based boards)

                                                            1. re: Harters
                                                              mamachef Sep 13, 2010 02:01 PM

                                                              Gosh, you know me and the art of grilling, Harters. I'd sail straight off to Kabob-land, with yummy lamb chunks, onions and tomatoes in a lemon-oregano-garlic vinaigrette. I'd use the remainder of the vinaigrette to dress a Greek salad, and stuff it into pitas. I'd stuff the hell out of some eggplant, and I'd get busy with seafood sautes. Of course you know, you want to stay away from large cuts and things that require re-thinking and re-making. I'd grill fish, and vegies at the same time. I'd braise vegies low and slow, and make a meal out of them w/ good bread; zucchini, onions, eggplant, tomatoes, fennel, nettles, shrooms, green beans, artichokes..........served room temp. I'd grill sardines and put them on good toasted bread w/ a drizzle of oil. Or.......roast a small leg of lamb in red wine and kalamta olives, and use leftovers for sandwiches. Finally, I'd buy me a pan of baklava and eat a piece or two every single day until it was gone. And then if I still had days left, I'd take it upon myself to go buy me another. Mmmmm

                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                Cherylptw Sep 13, 2010 08:21 PM

                                                                I'm jealous too!! Hope you have a great time....and as a side note, I suggest taking small amounts of the seasonings/herbs you like to cook with. You can buy tiny zip top bags that hold a few tablespoons. It'll be light weight in your luggage and you don't have to buy any when you get there.

                                                        2. re: Harters
                                                          LindaWhit Sep 13, 2010 11:15 AM

                                                          It's a hard life, innit!
                                                          ~~~~~~~
                                                          The passport book is going to be filled up very soon! Have a wonderful trip!

                                                          1. re: Harters
                                                            mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 09:51 PM

                                                            "a week in Belgium/France...." .... cue green hue from Mariacarmen!

                                                      2. onceadaylily Sep 13, 2010 09:30 AM

                                                        I do wish that I hadn't chosen to defrost the Italian sausage after days of eating down the red beans and rice. I'm a bit tired of grains and pork at the moment, but have stubbornly committed to sausage and lentil stew (tomato based, with the usual basil and oregano), with a basic mirepoix, and some diced red and green bell peppers, a diced cubanelle, chopped carrots, with some spinach tossed in at the end.

                                                        But I also have my eye on a recipe for a sausage and white beans gratin, if I can manage to get it together enough to pick over my beans and get them soaking, then I might opt for that (I do have sage to use up). It sounds like a satisfying meal, and easy to use what I have on hand with a few additions and substitutions. Hmm, the more I think about the gratin, the more I like it. I am being seduced by a simple gratin. But the lentil dish is much healthier. The guilt of choosing cheese and breadcrumbs over a healthy grain.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                          ChristinaMason Sep 13, 2010 08:25 PM

                                                          <I do wish that I hadn't chosen to defrost the Italian sausage after days of eating down the red beans and rice.>

                                                          How about this delicious sausage-fennel ragu instead?

                                                          http://culinspiration.wordpress.com/2...

                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                            onceadaylily Sep 14, 2010 08:57 AM

                                                            I wound up doing the gratin (and was glad I did), and the ragu looks very similar to the sauce I made for the beans, but I think the white wine, which I didn't have, would have been perfect in there. Thanks, Christina. I've bookmarked the recipe (I get a very good price for Italian sausage at my market).

                                                        2. o
                                                          Oboegal Sep 13, 2010 01:44 PM

                                                          We're going back on Weight Watchers tomorrow, so we're indulging a bit tonight: Cajun Fried Chicken Thighs (on special today at the store), Cajun roasted potatoes, roasted vegetable medley of broccoli, green beans, and brussel sprouts, and corn on the cob.

                                                          1. boyzoma Sep 13, 2010 04:47 PM

                                                            Tonight will be a mix of old and new. DH and I each had a lot of bone-in rib-eye (after all, they were 24 oz. steaks and usually a 6 oz. is more than enough for me) and baked potato left from our dinner Saturday night with the MIL, so will be gnawing on that bone tonight. Along with that, I am making some fresh green beans and a small side salad with a bunch of cherry tomato's that I just picked off my bushes. First time we have enough ripe ones for an entire salad!!!!!! Yum!

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: boyzoma
                                                              m
                                                              MIss G Sep 13, 2010 05:41 PM

                                                              Bacon avocado hamburger, baked beans, and green salad...

                                                            2. linguafood Sep 13, 2010 06:05 PM

                                                              Leftover salade niçoise, which was even better today, as the flavors had a chance to mingle (only today did I realize I had forgotten to add hard-boiled egg, but it wasn't missed), as well as some bruschetta with the last of summer tomatoes. Simple but tasty.

                                                              1. JerryMe Sep 13, 2010 06:24 PM

                                                                Ugh - trying to decide. Hungry and tired and it's just me. I've got avocado, green onions and tortillas and cheese. Thinking of a cheese crisp w/ Sriracha. Other CHer's ideas sound MUCH better!

                                                                1. Cherylptw Sep 13, 2010 08:41 PM

                                                                  Tonight was fried flounder and pan cooked squash & onions..I made a big pot of pinto beans with celery, onions, garlic & bell pepper and served up in a bowl with the juices.

                                                                  1. mariacarmen Sep 13, 2010 09:55 PM

                                                                    Made a soup for the oldsters tonight - homemade chicken broth and defrosted ground pork/rice mixture cooked up who-knows-when-ago (what we loosely term as a "revuelto"), then added diced potato to the soup and juice of a lemon, little garlic powder, oregano, and s&p. not too bad......

                                                                    1. mamachef Sep 14, 2010 08:08 AM

                                                                      Today's a busy one, dontcha know. Going to work early to put together a sammie/soup bar for my frat guys; vegan lentil soup and a lentil/sausage soup made from that base;good bread, and a spread of good cold cuts and cheese, condiments. At home, I have some leftover paneer tikka masala which sounds good (I like warm and spicy on mild days.) Mr. Mamachef will be sucking on leftover haluska, wetted teabags, and vicodin, after spending 5 hours in the dentist's chair yesterday.

                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                      1. re: mamachef
                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 14, 2010 09:24 AM

                                                                        Aw, poor guy. He gets tea bags while you work in a frat house. I think the worst thing about having extensive dental work is the soft food diet. For me, that was worse than the pain.

                                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                          mamachef Sep 14, 2010 10:51 AM

                                                                          He seconded that, onceadaylily. And yeah, my life is tough. 3x a week I hang out w/ 27 gorgeous college boys who are so grateful and respectful.......and actually know and like good food!! (I try not to stare like a bad auntie.)

                                                                          1. re: mamachef
                                                                            onceadaylily Sep 14, 2010 10:58 AM

                                                                            "stare like a bad auntie", ha ha! Yeah, not bad work if you can get it. Maybe I *should* get back in the food business.

                                                                            1. re: mamachef
                                                                              Cherylptw Sep 14, 2010 11:31 AM

                                                                              Lucky you!! (lol) Hope the Mr. gets better soon but don't torture him too much by eating all the goodies in front of him; have a little mercy!

                                                                        2. g
                                                                          gembellina Sep 14, 2010 09:04 AM

                                                                          this thread is amazing! I've had so little inspiration for dinners lately - weather's getting greyer and I want mashed potato and meat and pastry, but unfortunately the fit of my clothes suggests salads every night...

                                                                          anyway last night i was quite proud of my sausage harvest stew: sauasages slipped out of their skins and fried in chunks, then sauteeed onions, garlic, red peppers and cubes of squash. added cumin, cayenne, chipotle, tomatoes and chicken stock, then reduced down til thick. added a tin of chickpeas and a tin of sweetcorn at the end, and served with brown rice.

                                                                          tonight i won't get home til late so it's a boring old stirfry with prawn from thailand and vegetables from kenya and rice from japan which negates all the effort i make trying to buy local *sigh*

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: gembellina
                                                                            onceadaylily Sep 14, 2010 09:21 AM

                                                                            Welcome to WFD! Your stew sounds really lovely. I've been craving squash lately, as the temperature drops.

                                                                            1. re: gembellina
                                                                              h
                                                                              Harters Sep 14, 2010 10:42 AM

                                                                              gembellina

                                                                              Looking at your other posts, I take it you're another Brit? Welcome. Like the sound of the sausage stew (you ever known a British male *not* to like sausages?)

                                                                              John (in North Cheshire)

                                                                              1. re: Harters
                                                                                g
                                                                                gembellina Sep 15, 2010 01:39 AM

                                                                                Thanks! Indeed I am a Brit. My other half is from Lincolnshire so he insists on sausages at least once a week!

                                                                            2. boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 10:20 AM

                                                                              Tonight is simple again. Chili Cheese Baked Potatoes. Had some chili in the freezer, sour cream in the fridge add some cheddar, diced ham and tomato's. To that, some cauliflower with cheese sauce on the side with some garlic texas toast.

                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                eight_inch_pestle Sep 16, 2010 01:59 PM

                                                                                Sounds nice. And what a good use for leftover chili, as it is about that time of the year to whip out the big pan and get some oregano-habanero-garlic goodness simmering.

                                                                                1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                  boyzoma Sep 16, 2010 02:04 PM

                                                                                  Yes, it is that time of year. Even though I wish it were still summer and not all this rain we have been having again, I can't wait to make big batches of chili, stew, spaghetti, pot roast, et.al.

                                                                              2. Cherylptw Sep 14, 2010 11:36 AM

                                                                                Beef from Sunday leftover & will be turned into beef pot pie with carrots, peas & diced potatoes; a thickened beef broth gravy to combine with a biscuit dough. A salad of lettuce & cornmeal crusted tomatoes with Vidalia onion vinaigrette to go with. Pears for dessert.

                                                                                6 Replies
                                                                                1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                  mamachef Sep 14, 2010 12:04 PM

                                                                                  tasty nummies.

                                                                                  1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                    buttertart Sep 14, 2010 12:15 PM

                                                                                    That sounds like a meal my Mom would make, minus the cornmeal on the tomatoes and the onion in the vinaigrette (onion on the side for my Dad if he was being a good boy, maybe).

                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                      Cherylptw Sep 14, 2010 12:25 PM

                                                                                      The tomatoes are dusted with cornmeal and fried so the salad is a semi-warm one

                                                                                      1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                        buttertart Sep 14, 2010 12:27 PM

                                                                                        I understand, and it sounds great, but my Mom wouldn't have had any truck with such niceties (too much darn work).

                                                                                        1. re: buttertart
                                                                                          Cherylptw Sep 14, 2010 05:28 PM

                                                                                          LOL!

                                                                                    2. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                      LindaWhit Sep 14, 2010 02:06 PM

                                                                                      Yum.

                                                                                    3. linguafood Sep 14, 2010 01:07 PM

                                                                                      Got some fantastic looking pork cutlets from the farmer's market. They are large and very thin, so they won't be on the grill for long. Will marinate them Greek-style (oo, lemon, oregano, s&p, maybe some garlic). Sides are choriatiki, tzatziki (store-bought from Wegmans, but it's pretty dec), and tomato rice. Not entirely sure how that will go down, as my man is the 'rice cooker' in the house... but beyond making pilaf or turning on the rice cooker, he doesn't "deviate" a lot. I'll have to peruse the interwebs for clues as to whether the rice is cooked in the tomato sauce or whether it's all just mixed up later. Oh, the excitement '-P

                                                                                      Dessert - Greek yogurt with blackberries - also from the farmer's market, and hopefully they're not all as freakin' sour as the one I just tasted. Whoa.

                                                                                      5 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: linguafood
                                                                                        ChristinaMason Sep 14, 2010 03:17 PM

                                                                                        Is tomato rice a specifically Greek think? Because I have a pretty no-fail (well, mostly) recipe for Spanish rice that involves onion and tomato...

                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                          boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 03:25 PM

                                                                                          Please share your recipe if you will, CM. I am totally in love with all things rice, and would love to have another go-to option.

                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                            linguafood Sep 14, 2010 03:45 PM

                                                                                            I don't think it is, per se. I was just trying to come up with a nice carby side that isn't too heavy (i.e. no taters this time). We also haven't had rice in a while.

                                                                                            So if your Spanish rice is easy-peasy, I say: bring it!

                                                                                            1. re: linguafood
                                                                                              ChristinaMason Sep 14, 2010 04:14 PM

                                                                                              I do it by sight, so my measurements aren't super-precise, but even I have a hard time screwing this up. In a saucepan, I sauté about 1/2 c. of finely-diced onion in melted butter until almost transluscent, then add 1 or 2 cloves of minced garlic and the (dry, unrinsed) rice and stir-fry until the garlic is lightly golden and the rice is a bit toasted and turning translucent. Sometimes I add 1 tsp. of tomato paste at this point, sometimes not. For Spanish rice, I add cumin, but add your favorite seasoning here that compliments the rest of the meal. Don't forget the salt and pepper.

                                                                                              When the rice is toasted and seasoned, I add about 3/4c.-1 c. of tomato sauce (last time I used "Spanish-style" with bell pepper and garlic flavoring: delicious) and enough chicken broth (usually from bullion) to steam the rice.

                                                                                              I typically underestimate the liquid and check the rice's progress, adding more as needed to finish cooking. Be sure to stir once or twice to keep the bottom from burning, and definitely cook on low heat.

                                                                                              Good luck! Sorry my directions aren't more precise.

                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                linguafood Sep 14, 2010 05:46 PM

                                                                                                Thanks! Got this now, after dinner :-D.

                                                                                                But no prob, I used a recipe from here (http://greekgourmand.blogspot.com/200...), and it's pretty similar. Some of the rice got crunchy on the bottom, but I liked it.

                                                                                                The cutlets turned out great, just like at a Greek resto - I wonder if the key to the marinade is adding lemon....

                                                                                        2. krisrishere Sep 14, 2010 01:41 PM

                                                                                          Day 2 on diet: Tonight is grilled swordfish with lemon dill compound butter and grilled zucchini. Dessert will be a scoop of mango sorbet. I miss carbs :(

                                                                                          1. ChristinaMason Sep 14, 2010 03:19 PM

                                                                                            Boneless skinless Frankenchicken breasts, breaded in seasoned panko and oven-fried. Sliced that up and served over a salad the man made with blanched asparagus, romaine, and tomatoes. His salad dressing was a bit sweet for my tastes, and the chicken was kind of spongy and flavorless (aside from the crust).

                                                                                            Boxed generic mac on the side. We're living high, people :)

                                                                                            10 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                              boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 03:29 PM

                                                                                              OK - gotta ask - what is Frankenchicken???? I googled it and came up with this :-) Gotta love google!

                                                                                               
                                                                                              1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                mamachef Sep 14, 2010 03:49 PM

                                                                                                any weird chicken patty. i don't even know from what i speak.

                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                  onceadaylily Sep 14, 2010 03:56 PM

                                                                                                  I think she means a chicken so huge there had to be science (badly) involved. One of Linda Whit's phrases, maybe?

                                                                                                  1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                    ChristinaMason Sep 14, 2010 04:19 PM

                                                                                                    Yep, lifted from LindaWhit. To my mind, it's a giant, often flavorless piece of chicken breast from battery-raised chickens.

                                                                                                  2. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                    LindaWhit Sep 14, 2010 04:09 PM

                                                                                                    I think I started using that phrase here first. For me, it describes the abnormally ultra-large boneless/skinless chicken breasts that can be purchased in the stupidmarkets now...the ones that weigh a pound each (when they used to weigh two-thirds less!). :-)

                                                                                                    A single one is often large enough for 3-4 meals when used in combination with pasta and vegetables.

                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                      boyzoma Sep 14, 2010 04:21 PM

                                                                                                      So that's what we had this last weekend. Frankenchicken! DH got some b/s chicken breasts that were so huge, I had to cut them in half lengthwise to make them normal before we BBQ'd them. He bought them at Costco, no less. We had never seen something so huge! And you are right. I still have leftovers in the fridge. Something for later in the week as well as DH's lunches!

                                                                                                      1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                        LindaWhit Sep 14, 2010 04:39 PM

                                                                                                        Yup - I've often done that with the ones that are really big as well, boyzoma. They rarely cook properly, so cutting them in half lengthwise as you did get them closer to "even" without pounding them out.

                                                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                          b
                                                                                                          Bernice 1955 Sep 14, 2010 04:48 PM

                                                                                                          Meatball soup and/or homemade pizza - maybe. All this could change by afternoon time. My mind is a crazy whirl of ideas.

                                                                                                    2. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                      m
                                                                                                      millygirl Sep 16, 2010 09:46 AM

                                                                                                      OMG what is that????!!!!! Very disturbing.

                                                                                                      1. re: millygirl
                                                                                                        boyzoma Sep 16, 2010 09:58 AM

                                                                                                        Leave it to google to come up with a photo like that!

                                                                                                  3. m
                                                                                                    milkyway4679 Sep 14, 2010 05:37 PM

                                                                                                    Tonight's dinner was oven fried taquitos, stuffed with homemade slow simmered chicken, and a side of ridiculously simple yet delicious corn salad. :)

                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: milkyway4679
                                                                                                      ChristinaMason Sep 14, 2010 06:20 PM

                                                                                                      yum!

                                                                                                      1. re: milkyway4679
                                                                                                        eight_inch_pestle Sep 16, 2010 02:31 PM

                                                                                                        Never thought about homemade taquitos...haven't had them since the college cafeteria. Sounds tasty!

                                                                                                      2. krisrishere Sep 15, 2010 06:41 AM

                                                                                                        Tonight I'm making a caesar salad with grilled shrimp and homemade dressing. I don't have any anchovies on hand, so I'll take a tip from another Chow post and use a dash of fish sauce. On top will be a crispy parmesan frico or 2, or 3. :)

                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                        1. re: krisrishere
                                                                                                          krisrishere Sep 15, 2010 07:26 AM

                                                                                                          I just saw another post with a fantastic sounding pasta sauce with roasted eggplant, tomatoes and fresh mozzarella. I think I'm going to make a small portion of this with some whole wheat pasta and a small caesar on the side.

                                                                                                        2. mamachef Sep 15, 2010 07:13 AM

                                                                                                          Tonight my dudes at Cal are having beef stew with biscuits and a green salad with apple, walnuts and feta. Peanut butter cookie ice-cream sammies for dessert, which I don't always make, but today we'll celebrate Sept. birthdays with them. At home, I'm doing pretty much the same thing; I'll take my vegies w/ me to work and prep. with theirs. Nice braised meat, stewed vegies, red wine......go-to Fall meal.

                                                                                                          1. JungMann Sep 15, 2010 07:34 AM

                                                                                                            Sunday was chipotle macaroni and cheese made with sharp cheddar and mozzarella to get everything appropriately stringy. On the side I made collard greens with Cajun spices, pork trotters and a dusting of smoked paprika.

                                                                                                            Last night I spatchcocked a chicken and stuffed a seasoning mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, smoked paprika, oregano, lemon thyme and allspice beneath the skin. The skin got a rub of Aleppo pepper, sumac, salt and pepper. While that crackled and crunched in the hot oven, I made a quick sauce for spaghetti inspired by linguafood, panroasting cherry tomatoes and combining that with red onions, garlic, sambal, fish sauce, oregano and basil. I added a little tinned tomato sauce and chicken stock leftover from the gravy to add a little more body.

                                                                                                            10 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                              mariacarmen Sep 15, 2010 07:54 AM

                                                                                                              that chicken sounds divine. i'm going to have to copy you, i'm afraid..... except for the spatchcocking. haven't tried that yet.... well, maybe today's the day. although "someone" used my kitchen shears to cut carpeting and broke them and hasn't yet replaced them, so.....

                                                                                                              1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                linguafood Sep 15, 2010 08:26 AM

                                                                                                                I am flattered to having been your inspiration! Your posts always make my mouth water.

                                                                                                                1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                  LindaWhit Sep 15, 2010 08:46 AM

                                                                                                                  That chicken sounds wonderful, JM! I have chicken defrosting for tonight (albeit skinless) but I just might have to do something along the same lines and bake it. Won't get all the crackly-crunchy, however. :-(

                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                    JungMann Sep 15, 2010 10:19 AM

                                                                                                                    Lemon thyme does not blend into my cooking as seamlessly as lemon rind used to. It has a brightness that stands out against my favorite spices like allspice or cumin with less of the herbaceousness of English thyme. I'll need to do a little more thinking on how to get this herb to shine with my typical flavor profiles.

                                                                                                                  2. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                    Cherylptw Sep 15, 2010 05:19 PM

                                                                                                                    I would have loved to have been a guest at your dinner table on Sunday..I grew up on that kind of food....the entire meal spells comfort food to me

                                                                                                                    1. re: Cherylptw
                                                                                                                      JungMann Sep 15, 2010 06:33 PM

                                                                                                                      That was food we considered very exotic as an Asian family. I always begged my mother to bring me back collard greens when she would go to the South Side of Chicago. They were extra verboten for the little bits of pork interspersed through the greens in a way that would have greatly offended my Muslim father. In a way now, food like this has become comforting as the scent of jasmine rice to me, bringing me back to my mother's knee and Southern treats stolen from her purse when no one was looking.

                                                                                                                      1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 15, 2010 08:23 PM

                                                                                                                        "They were extra verboten for the little bits of pork"

                                                                                                                        This reminded me of a story a friend of mine loves to relate from her youth. Once a year, she and her mother would stealthily enter the store of the honey-baked ham. My friend was ordered by her mother to stand guard, watching the door and plaza parking lot for *anyone* who might recognize them.

                                                                                                                        The family is Jewish. My friend still talks about how racked with anxiety her mother was as she hissed at her to *watch the windows* if her daughter's attention happened to stray. My friend relates this story to demonstrate the power of pork, the salty pink temptress.

                                                                                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                          mariacarmen Sep 15, 2010 08:29 PM

                                                                                                                          "the salty pink temptress"!!!! i LOVE THAT!

                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                            mebby Sep 15, 2010 09:12 PM

                                                                                                                            +1

                                                                                                                        2. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                          mebby Sep 15, 2010 09:11 PM

                                                                                                                          Food like this has become comforting as the scent of jasmine rice to me, bringing me back to my mother's knee and Southern treats stolen from her purse when no one was looking.
                                                                                                                          -----------
                                                                                                                          Such a beautiful, evocative line. Your food is so inspirational and far-reaching. I'd line up any day for the JungMann cookbook!

                                                                                                                    2. Breadcrumbs Sep 15, 2010 08:55 AM

                                                                                                                      oops, I posted this in the wrong spot earlier!!!

                                                                                                                      Since hubby is suffering from culinary jet-lag due to the whirlwind tour of Arabesque recipes I've been taking him on for the past 3 nights, tonight we're returning to one of his personal faves, pasta.

                                                                                                                      To start off we'll have a salad of baby arugula with roasted golden baby beets (because I can't get enough of these!!) w lemon gorgonzola vinaigrette (from Epi)

                                                                                                                      Our main will be Pasta w pancetta, leek and mushrooms from Gordon Ramsay's Fast Food book.

                                                                                                                      I should note the main was inspired by EYB....I wanted to use up some leeks and mushrooms and voila...EYB gave me 138 options from my cookbooks. Jane I LOVE EYB!!

                                                                                                                      1. Perilagu Khan Sep 15, 2010 12:01 PM

                                                                                                                        Chilequiles con huevos with French cut grain baines on the side.

                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: Perilagu Khan
                                                                                                                          mamachef Sep 15, 2010 12:06 PM

                                                                                                                          I love grain bains, specially with ret rahs.

                                                                                                                          1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                            mariacarmen Sep 15, 2010 12:29 PM

                                                                                                                            ok, i'll bite. what are ret rahs? do you get to drink swate tay with them?

                                                                                                                            i'm not spatchcocking anything tonight after all, and saving Jungman's chicken prep for another night, with the BF. tonight for the oldsters is Linda Whit's - ahem - "maple" syrup chicken (dad doesn't splurge on read maple syrup.) i think it'll still be yums. actually, that's dinner for them tomorrow night. tonight is apanados - aka, milanesa, chicken fried steak, etc., pounded thin, and rice.

                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                              mamachef Sep 15, 2010 01:07 PM

                                                                                                                              Ret rahs = red rice. and yep, sweet tay would be the perfick drank.

                                                                                                                              1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                mariacarmen Sep 15, 2010 08:33 PM

                                                                                                                                Huh-lareous!

                                                                                                                        2. roxlet Sep 15, 2010 01:35 PM

                                                                                                                          Still feeding our Egyptian house guests, so last night was an abbreviated Thanksgiving dinner. I roasted a turkey, made gravy, stuffing and green beans, and cleaned out all the other lurking left over side dishes including cole slaw and ratatouille. They wanted to know what the dark meat was! They had never seen it before, and I remember that most of the turkey I saw sold at the market in Cairo was breast meat off the bone that had been rolled and tied as a roast. They adored the stuffing even though the one who hates vegetables was scared to try it when he saw the celery in there. Tonight the DH is making grilled, marinated beef flaps served with tortillas, black beans, cheese, tomatoes and green onions. These guys eat a lot!

                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 15, 2010 01:37 PM

                                                                                                                            These guys don't know how good they got it!

                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                              roxlet Sep 15, 2010 04:34 PM

                                                                                                                              Lol! They do, though. When we were on vacation, they lived on pizza and were thrilled to have a home cooked meal when we returned.

                                                                                                                          2. boyzoma Sep 15, 2010 02:09 PM

                                                                                                                            Tonight is going to be using up some leftover beef and make some beef stroganoff with lots of mushrooms. This will be over some good egg noodles. We will have some peas and a side salad with some of my garden cherry tomatoes.

                                                                                                                            3 Replies
                                                                                                                            1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                              Breadcrumbs Sep 15, 2010 04:16 PM

                                                                                                                              Sounds yummy and the cherry tomatoes seem to be sweeter than ever this year.

                                                                                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                boyzoma Sep 15, 2010 04:22 PM

                                                                                                                                You are so right. They are like eating candy from the vine! Problem is, it is now pouring rain and supposed to be so for the next 2 weeks and I still have a LOT of green tomato's on the vine. Heritage, Romas and Cherry!!!!!!! Waaaaa.

                                                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma
                                                                                                                                  Breadcrumbs Sep 15, 2010 04:27 PM

                                                                                                                                  Lets just hope there's not a lot of wind and hopefully your bounty will be in tact when the sun returns! Here in Toronto we're only looking at one day of rain at the moment, we'll see what happens when it moves in tonight.

                                                                                                                            2. Cherylptw Sep 15, 2010 05:21 PM

                                                                                                                              Thick center cut pork chops were baked halfway then coated with my special BBQ sauce and finished. With it, crockpot cabbage and more pinto beans from a few days ago.

                                                                                                                              1. LindaWhit Sep 15, 2010 05:23 PM

                                                                                                                                Super-simple - seasoned a Frankenchicken breast (cut in half lengthwise for two portions) with salt, pepper, and Meyer Lemon zest. Heated some olive oil and butter in a nonstick pan until hot and bubbly; added about 1 tsp. of crushed garlic and sauteed for maybe 10-15 seconds. Then added and browned the chicken on both sides. Removed the chicken; added white wine (about a quarter cup), 2 Tbsp. Meyer lemon juice, and about 1/3 cup chicken stock. Let that boil for about 2-3 minutes, then returned the chicken to the pan, lowered the heat, and covered cooked the chicken until the liquid was reduced to about 1/4 of what it was originally. Removed the chicken, removed the pan from the heat and whisked in some sour cream.

                                                                                                                                Put it back over VERY low heat so the sour cream didn't break, and added the chicken back to the pan and spooned the sauce over top. Covered and let it warm up again.

                                                                                                                                Sides were leftover Israeli couscous with sauce spooned over top, and steamed asparagus.

                                                                                                                                1. ChristinaMason Sep 15, 2010 06:23 PM

                                                                                                                                  Predictably, I was hungry two hours after dinner at a Chinese restaurant tonight, so I had some whole wheat Ritz crackers and sharp cheddar, along with a Liberty ale (DH's fave).

                                                                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                                                                  1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                    mariacarmen Sep 15, 2010 08:36 PM

                                                                                                                                    haha - i went to a chinese/sushi place tonight, and brought some of my sushi home. wonder if'll be hungry for it soon?

                                                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                      ChristinaMason Sep 15, 2010 10:30 PM

                                                                                                                                      If not, send it my way.

                                                                                                                                  2. eight_inch_pestle Sep 16, 2010 01:42 AM

                                                                                                                                    Totally crap-effing-tastic day. Ambition in the kitchen was not in the realm of possibility, especially with a damn-near blinding headache. Did manage to wipe the fridge clean of leftovers, tho. Big potato croquettes made from leftover mashed potatoes, leftover roast lamb, leftover sauteed mushrooms, Parmesan, and fresh mint and rosemary that needed to be used up. Also a touch of nutmeg, eggs, a little flour. Sauteed in a mixture of butter and olive oil, and served on dressed dandelion greens with a little pan sauce from the roast lamb drizzled over the patties.

                                                                                                                                    The gf gushed, but she is from Kansas and dinner revolved around (let us not kid ourselves) cheesy fried mashed potatoes with gravy. The bar was probably set pretty low.

                                                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                      LindaWhit Sep 16, 2010 06:30 AM

                                                                                                                                      eip, the croquettes sound VERY good - well done, even with a crap-effing-tastic blinding headache! Hope you're feeling better this a.m.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                        ChristinaMason Sep 16, 2010 08:41 AM

                                                                                                                                        sounds good to me, too! I am a sucker for mashed potatoes, too, though. feel better!

                                                                                                                                        1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                          onceadaylily Sep 16, 2010 08:46 AM

                                                                                                                                          I had a headache yesterday too (always before the rain comes, which is a pity, as I love rainy days), and wound up playing with leftovers too. But there's only so much that can be done with a cassoulet.

                                                                                                                                          Your meal sounds wonderful.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                            mariacarmen Sep 16, 2010 09:07 AM

                                                                                                                                            drool drool drool! i can just taste the richness of the potatoes with the tartness of the dressed dandelion greens.... did you mince the lamb up, or grind it? it reminds me a bit of a bolivian dish called papas rellenas - which uses a mixture of ground beef, raisins, onions, a slice of hard cooked egg, olives, and maybe a couple other things, wrapped into a mashed potato ball, then egged, flowered, and sauteed. soooo effing good! your version with the lamb and rosemary/mint sounds much more elegant, albeit we are still talking about cheesy fried mashed potatoes with gravy.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                              eight_inch_pestle Sep 16, 2010 02:49 PM

                                                                                                                                              Ha! Thanks, mc. I hand-chopped the lamb and mushrooms, mostly because I didn't want to mess up the food processor. Then, of course, I turned around and used the processor to make bread crumbs (from a couple-day old loaf of ciabatta) for dredging the croquettes.

                                                                                                                                          2. buttertart Sep 16, 2010 06:10 AM

                                                                                                                                            This week has been especially annoying for some reason and last night I just HAD to cook something to make myself feel better. Made the dry-fried chicken from Fuchsia Dunlop's "Revolutionary Chinese Cooking" - with 3 boneless/skinless chicken breasts (calls for 1 lb on the bone but was plumb out - the amounts of ingerdients here were adjusted to the appx 1 1/2 lb weight of chicken I was using), cut in 1" cubes, 3 celery stalks, sliced 1/2 in on the diagonal and salted lightly, 4 scallions, cut similarly to the celery, 1 1/2 tsp whole Sichuan peppercorns, 7 whole dried chili peppers, 2 tb chili bean sauce, 1/2 tsp salt, 2 tb wine, 2 tsp dark soy. You cook the chicken in 1/4 c oil over high heat until barely done, chuck in the peppercorns and the chilis, stirfry a bit, then the wine - I use Irish whiskey, I think it was Barbara Tropp who suggested Scotch and we're on to Irish these days - the dark soy and the chili paste, stirfry until nice and glazed - FD says to do it for 10-15 mins until dry, but I didn't take it that far, the chicken was pretty mich cooked in the first step - next time I'll not cook it as much initially - put in the veg, get them hot, and serve. It smelled so good being put into the dish I couldn't wait to get sat down and start eating it. The moist crunch of the celery with the dryer chicken and the spices, a party in your mouth! Had leftover Chinese restaurant rice and the sempiternal cucumbers in soy etc dressing with. FD's recipes are fantastically accurate and easy. Very cheering.

                                                                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                              linguafood Sep 16, 2010 09:36 AM

                                                                                                                                              That sounds awesome. I have to get me some Fuchsia Dunlop....

                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                buttertart Sep 16, 2010 09:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                What are you waiting for? I know you are a Sichuan fan, these recipes are simple and you get the real taste from them...blow the lid off your new town (where my sis-in-law also lives and tells me the Chinese food isn't the best).

                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                  linguafood Sep 16, 2010 09:56 AM

                                                                                                                                                  I will, trust me! As for the Chinese food here - actually, we have a pretty awesome Sichuan place, to which we've been flocking on a weekly basis.

                                                                                                                                                  http://bitchinberlin.wordpress.com/20...

                                                                                                                                                  Your sil should check it out some time, it'll change her life (it made me a happier person!).

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                    buttertart Sep 20, 2010 08:31 AM

                                                                                                                                                    I'll tell her! Thanks.

                                                                                                                                              2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                JungMann Sep 16, 2010 10:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                Is the wine meant to be Shaoxing? I think I have all these ingredients and it sounds like a very easy meal.

                                                                                                                                                I would love a recipe for a good Chinese cucumber salad. I've tried making the kind with scallions many times and always failed.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                                                  linguafood Sep 16, 2010 10:30 AM

                                                                                                                                                  Oooh. Is there a recipe for Sichuan-style cuke salad in the Fuchsia book per chance? With Sichuan peppercorns, heaps of garlic, and mystery sauce (sesame oil, soy sauce fo sho, and lots of question marks)????

                                                                                                                                                  I've tried to recreate our local haunt's cuke salad, but didn't even get close. The chef then informed me that they use a 'special oil'. Dang.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                                                    buttertart Sep 16, 2010 11:30 AM

                                                                                                                                                    Yes, Shaoxing is intended.
                                                                                                                                                    There are cucumber salad recipes in the books (bashed cukes with garlic, etc) but I always wing mine: to 1 cuke seeded and cut in 3x1/2 in batons (or the nice Taiwanese ones not seeded and cut similarly), 2 tb soy (I like Kimlan), 2-3 tb black vinegar (husband likey vinegar, can reduce), 1 tb chili bean sauce or other chili condiment, a couple of scallions, sliced, 2-3 cloves garlic, a tsp or so of grated ginger, a tb sesame oil and a touch of sugar - or not if it's for my husband.

                                                                                                                                                2. Perilagu Khan Sep 16, 2010 07:23 AM

                                                                                                                                                  Tonight is capellini with pesto and a baby spinach and radicchio salad with blue cheese vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                  1. bermudagourmetgoddess Sep 16, 2010 07:45 AM

                                                                                                                                                    Last night was a healthy but tasty Shrimp Stir Fry with Asian Slaw Salad
                                                                                                                                                    along with 2 bottles of wine and a bottle of Armaretto (yes had a slight head ache this AM)

                                                                                                                                                    Tonight is pan fried Fresh Grouper topped with lemon caper sauce and a side arugula salad and NO wine tonight

                                                                                                                                                    1. mamachef Sep 16, 2010 07:58 AM

                                                                                                                                                      Well, today's a special day. My Mr. turns 52, and I've got a small suprise planned. I'll head up to Cal early and tonight they're having 4-bean chili with round steak,w/ jalapeno/cheese cornbread w/honey-chile butter and red pepper jam, and a bowl of coleslaw. My neighbor's going to invite him out for a celebratory drink, which will give me enough time to get home early, and I'm "making a little party" for him. The day's carte is a starter of figs and proscuitto splashed with a little lemon, and then we'll head off to an Involtini of Swordfish and Shrimp with vermouth Butter, known to usn's as Martini Chicken. I'm going to serve it with rice pilaf cooked off in chicken stock with a handful of herbs (maybe tarragon and chervil? or too strong? and a steamed green vegie; salad after or I might just leave it at that. I made a German choco cake, but I'm thinking it might not be the best idea re: Mr.'s recent oral surgery and crunchy, nutty pecans, so I think I'll make baked apples with currants or raisins and maybe a creme anglaise or custard sauce. Comments? Ideas for wine? Oh yeah, we'll be a grand total of six at table.

                                                                                                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 16, 2010 08:53 AM

                                                                                                                                                        Happy birthday to your Mr!

                                                                                                                                                        I use tarragon in chicken stock all the time (never thought to use chervil, so can't offer an opinion about that one), the tarragon does add a sweet note. And I always vote for cremes, custard and puddings. I hope you have a great time.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                                          mariacarmen Sep 16, 2010 09:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                          Lucky Mr. M, oral surgery or no! Is there any actually chicken in the Involtini? The vermouth butter sounds fantastic. I don't think either tarragon or chervil would be too strong in your rice. i can taste the tarragon now.... as for wine, maybe a nice viognier? enjoy!

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 16, 2010 09:31 AM

                                                                                                                                                            I wouldn't cook chervil myself, I'd use it as a garnish.

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                              mamachef Sep 16, 2010 09:41 AM

                                                                                                                                                              No, that was a mis-type. You can also prepare it with chicken and I forgot where I was headed. I love the idea of the Viognier, or maybe a Macon Village 90-96. And I actually thought of something; since the main is seafood, why don't i use clam broth (bottled) that I cook down with the shrimp shells? Just a thought; speaks to a more consistent profile. That oughta do it, with some lemon zest parsley. And thanks to all for b-day wishes to the Mr.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                                                m
                                                                                                                                                                millygirl Sep 16, 2010 09:53 AM

                                                                                                                                                                Last night I made turkey shepherds pie. It turned out wonderful and I think I may even prefer it over beef.
                                                                                                                                                                Anyways I made a huge casserole and decided rather than have the two of us eat it over a few days - I graciously offered it up to Mr. MG to take to his boys only private club.

                                                                                                                                                                Most Friday evenings Mr. MG and friends meet up at a private club to play pool, table tennis (not ping pong), watch sports. When the mood strikes I will make a casserole or something for them to enjoy. It's gotten me many brownie points and rave reviews. They will love this one.

                                                                                                                                                            2. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit Sep 16, 2010 11:12 AM

                                                                                                                                                              A very happy day to the Mr mamachef! Unfortunately, not a help with the wines, but I like mariacarmen's idea of a Viognier. Or maybe a dry Riesling?

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mamachef
                                                                                                                                                                eight_inch_pestle Sep 16, 2010 02:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                Have a great time! Sounds like you will be much-loved by both a gaggle of strapping young boys and a good husband (I mean, he must be good to deserve a meal like that).

                                                                                                                                                                And you must be a much more efficient cook than I am to knock all that out while hubby is having "a" drink: by the time I put all that together the neighbor would just have to lean Mr. mamachef against the front door and ring the doorbell. Hope everything turns out splendidly...

                                                                                                                                                              2. Breadcrumbs Sep 16, 2010 10:18 AM

                                                                                                                                                                Its a very rainy, blustery day here so a steaming pot of soup definitely seemed to be in order. Since I have no desire to brave the elements and hit the market, I'm working with ingredients on hand tonight! So, for dinner, a spicy ratatouille-inspired soup to which I'll add some ground lamb and serve w feta and black olive crostini. A basil peach galette for dessert.

                                                                                                                                                                1. ChristinaMason Sep 16, 2010 01:27 PM

                                                                                                                                                                  Chicken fajitas before I head out for the late shift tonight. Chicken marinated in key lime juice, fresh garlic, pepper, salt, a bit of cumin, and some "creole seasoning" (garlic, onion, paprika, pepper, salt).

                                                                                                                                                                  That got sautéed with some slightly spicy green peppers, sliced onion, and crimini mushrooms. Folded into flour tortillas with a little cheddar on top. A drizzle of spicy salsa ranchera to kick it up. Pretty tasty, actually.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. boyzoma Sep 16, 2010 02:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                    Have some chicken I need to use up in the fridge (some of my "frankenchicken") and some fresh broccoli as well as some pineapple chunks, so I think I'll make some chicken teriyaki over jasmine rice.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. roxlet Sep 16, 2010 04:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                      I am making a lasagna that is different than any other lasagna I have ever made. Usually, I make meatballs and sausages and crumble them as my meat layer. My husband made a meat sauce the other night that is mostly meat, and I am using that as my meat layer. Since I still have some Egyptians staying with me, I can't use Italian sausage, which is pork, so this will be a whole new flavor profile for me. It's baking now and I have to say that it smells pretty good. Of course, I had to make a pot of sauce with meatballs for a little moisture. Pretty darn good meatballs, I have to say!

                                                                                                                                                                      6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                        Breadcrumbs Sep 16, 2010 04:10 PM

                                                                                                                                                                        mmmmmmmm....you're making me drool! Sounds more like a "gravy" than a sauce and, sooooo delicious! Please report back as to how you liked it vs your usual la'za

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                                                          roxlet Sep 19, 2010 12:01 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          It was pretty good, but I prefer it my usual way. I missed the pork and I missed the more chunky meat layer. From where I come from, we call it sauce, not gravy, but we're talking about the same thing. For us, gravy was what you put on the Thanksgiving turkey! Anyway, I am having left over meatballs for lunch, and they are so good!

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                            Breadcrumbs Sep 19, 2010 12:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                            We also call it sauce Roxlet. I have some Italian friends though and they make an all meat sauce for the big Sunday get-togethers. They call that sauce the "Sunday Gravy". My husband LOVES that sauce. For me, I prefer my sauce to have a much more tomatoey flavour. Glad you're enjoying those meatballs. We had meatball sandwiches for lunch yesterday!!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs
                                                                                                                                                                              roxlet Sep 19, 2010 01:42 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              Well, I am Italian, Breadcrumbs, and we definitely never called it gravy or "Sunday Gravy." And I do love that that all-meat sauce too -- meatballs, a piece of pork (called "sauce meat"), sausage and braciole! I make it rarely, but when I do, it's soooo good. Most of the time I make a marinara type sauce with good tomato flavor!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                Breadcrumbs Sep 19, 2010 03:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                mmm, I forgot about the braciole in there! So delicious! I love going there on Sundays, you can smell lunch before you even get inside!!

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet
                                                                                                                                                                                  LindaWhit Sep 19, 2010 04:04 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                  I LOVE braciole! I'd never had it until a few years ago, when I picked up a pre-rolled braciole at a meat market in the town in which I work. A quick search online found how easy it was to cook. OMG, it's seriously one of my favorite meals after simmering in a good tomato sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                                  ::::Making a mental note to pick up another very soon!:::::

                                                                                                                                                                        2. mariacarmen Sep 16, 2010 07:19 PM

                                                                                                                                                                          Oh Man, Jung Man, i copied you tonight. Bought a chicken and had butcher spatchcock it (since my scissors are broken), and used your oregano/thyme/smokey paprika (no allspice tho) and olive oil mixture under the skin, then rubbed the outside with salt pepper and a hefty dose of sumac (no aleppo, unfortunately!) It came out beautiful crispy, deep brown, and delicious - loved the combo of the citrusy sumac with the smokey paprika. I will definitely make this again. I served it with Robert Lauriston's wife's cilantro rice (YUM) and a fantastic salad (finally, something of my own making) FM beets, early girl and heirloom tomatoes (HOORAY FOR SWEET LATE SUMMER TOMATOES - FINALLY A GOOD TOMATO THIS SEASON!), a holland goat cheese, and FM arugula, in a lemony shallot vinaigrette. A lot of flavors but think they went well with each other. Oh, and sauteed the beet greens with some slivered garlic to serve under the chicken.

                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                                            JungMann Sep 22, 2010 07:02 AM

                                                                                                                                                                            Glad to hear you enjoyed the combination! Who would've thunk sumac and pimenton would get along so well? But no garlic? That I cannot abide!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: JungMann
                                                                                                                                                                              mariacarmen Sep 22, 2010 07:52 PM

                                                                                                                                                                              no, i did use garlic, what am i, a philistine? a vampire? of course there was garlic, Jungmann, never fear.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. buttertart Sep 17, 2010 07:42 AM

                                                                                                                                                                            A use-it-up dinner of a Mitteleuropa bent - sort of (really sort of) combo Szekely gulyacs and bigos. An onion, sliced thin and fried brown, 4 cloves garlic, chopped fine, cooked together, some bits of cooked pork tenderloin that had been "carnitas" in tacos Monday night, 2 cooked bratwurst sliced up, 2 tb Croatian paprika, 1 tsp caraway seed, most of a package of sauerkraut, a package of Chinese cooked chestnuts, simmered 1/2 hr. Served with Greek yogurt to top and warmed up frozen Chinese youtiao sprinkled with salt and rubbed with garlic in place of langos (a bit of a nutty idea but good nonetheless). Nice and comforting after a weird early-evening storm that took part of our eavestroughing off the side of the house!

                                                                                                                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                              linguafood Sep 17, 2010 08:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                                              That is one interesting dinner!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood
                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart Sep 17, 2010 08:37 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                Necessity is the mother of invention. Or is that Frank Zappa.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                eight_inch_pestle Sep 17, 2010 10:21 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                Love it.

                                                                                                                                                                                How does Croatian paprika compare to its more famous cousins?

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                                                                  mariacarmen Sep 17, 2010 10:38 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                  i was wondering the same thing actually - spent a couple months in Croatia but I don't think i ever noticed (or maybe didn't buy?) their paprika. Once, tho, not understanding the written language, I bought what I thought was olive oil to make pasta carbonara (we had just left italy and i was missing it) and it turned out it was some kind of squash oil. even the picture on the bottle didn't clue me in. Weirdly vegetal - not in a good way.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: eight_inch_pestle
                                                                                                                                                                                    buttertart Sep 17, 2010 10:54 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    It's essentially like Hungarian sweet (I hope you're not Hungarian...). I picked it up at a Euromarket in Queens, comes in an attractive red foil package that appealed to my magpie side - and I visited Dubrovnik very briefly ages ago so the provenance was nice too. Also cheap.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                      mariacarmen Sep 17, 2010 03:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                      Not Hungarian (although I've visited) - Bolivian. Loved Dubrovnik, spent a month there in 2005. Good to know, thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                2. Cynsa Sep 17, 2010 08:55 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                  I ♥ mole. The flavors just bloom on the tongue and it's a taste that is so satisfyingly delicious.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Mole Negro con pollo
                                                                                                                                                                                  easier to make than I thought!
                                                                                                                                                                                  the ingredients list is really long:
                                                                                                                                                                                  8 oz. each Negro chile, Mulato chile, ancho chile (dried chiles)
                                                                                                                                                                                  8 oz. ground almonds
                                                                                                                                                                                  3 oz. ground peanuts
                                                                                                                                                                                  3 oz. ground walnuts
                                                                                                                                                                                  3 oz. ground pumpkin seeds
                                                                                                                                                                                  8 oz. raisins
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 plantain, sliced
                                                                                                                                                                                  1/4 baguette, sliced or one slice of white bread
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 corn tortilla
                                                                                                                                                                                  12 garlic cloves, peeled
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 onion, coarsely chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Roma tomato, cut in quarters
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 L vegetable oil
                                                                                                                                                                                  16 oz. tahini or sesame paste
                                                                                                                                                                                  2 rounds of Ibarra Chocolate
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 pinch ground cinnamon
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 pinch ground anise
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 pinch ground cloves
                                                                                                                                                                                  2 pinches ground black pepper
                                                                                                                                                                                  1 pinch ground coriander seed
                                                                                                                                                                                  salt to taste
                                                                                                                                                                                  1/2 cup sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                  whole sesame seeds for garnish
                                                                                                                                                                                  two whole chickens, cut in pieces

                                                                                                                                                                                  Saute chicken pieces to brown. set aside.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Heat vegetable oil in large pot and heat just to the point that it shimmers.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Add cut-up tortilla pieces, bread, garlic, onion, plantain, tomato, and cook until the tortilla and bread are crusty browned.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Add chiles that you have seeded and de-stemed. Stir until fragrant.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Add nuts, and sesame seed paste (tahini). Add raisins, spices, chocolate. Cook to soften. Add water as needed.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Use stick blender to make mole paste. or, in batches to food processor or blender.
                                                                                                                                                                                  Add salt to taste. At this stage, it is in paste form. You can keep this in the refrigerator for three weeks; or freeze it for up to one year.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Add 2 parts mole to 1 part chicken broth, cook for 25 minutes with the reserved chicken pieces. (serve mole over whole roast chicken, sprinkle with sesame seed to garnish) - I add enough of the mole paste for a thick sauce, just enough chicken broth to thin the paste.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Cynsa
                                                                                                                                                                                    onceadaylily Sep 17, 2010 09:31 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    You just made me very hungry, Cynsa. Thanks for sharing the recipe.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. ChristinaMason Sep 17, 2010 09:46 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                    Brunch today before work was whole wheat rotini tossed with an egg yolk, about 1 c. of ricotta, sliced asparagus stir-fried with garlic, some chopped parsley, a bit of cooking water, and a handful of "Italian blend" cheese, topped off with a fried egg. Not bad, but the part-skim ricotta from Harris Teeter was pretty tasteless and grainy. Blech.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Why does dairy in the U.S suck so hard?

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. bermudagourmetgoddess Sep 17, 2010 10:34 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                      I don't know who invitied IGOR to our dinner party but it is nothing but grab what you can for the next few days here in Bermuda ! Thanks goodness I have lots to grab

                                                                                                                                                                                      After that it will be BBQ everynight ;) to rid of the items in the freezer due to we will have no power ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess
                                                                                                                                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 17, 2010 10:50 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                        Was someone in a *mood* when they named that hurricane? Good luck, and please post if you barbeque something creative.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                          bermudagourmetgoddess Sep 17, 2010 11:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Few yesrs back we got hit with Fabian and the wonderful BBQ's we had after...that was the first time I ever BBQ a whole side of Chilian Sea Bass, 40 lbs of Wahoo, Bermuda lobsters, and whatever else people brought over...

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess
                                                                                                                                                                                            Breadcrumbs Sep 17, 2010 01:55 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            Stay safe, we'll be thinking of you and wishing you well. Let us know how things turn out for you.

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: bermudagourmetgoddess
                                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit Sep 17, 2010 01:54 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          bgg, I hope Eye-gor (using Marty Feldman's pronunciation from "Young Frankenstein"! LOL) doesn't do TOO much damage to you or the island!

                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Phurstluv Sep 17, 2010 05:03 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                          Wow, it looks like I've gotten in on this thread before it turns over again! And it looks like you all have been cooking great meals!

                                                                                                                                                                                          It's been a super busy week with back to school, my 2nd son's birthday, etc. I won't bore you with all the details. Suffice it to say I survived a sleep over (camp out) of 7 y.o.s and their sugar induced frenzy!! They did do a good job on the sliders, baby back ribs and corn dogs with tater tots, I was impressed. Especially after eating chips, popcorn, homemade oatmeal cookies and candy!!

                                                                                                                                                                                          My son's birthday dinner consisted of leftovers but he didn't seem to mind. The baby back ribs were so delicious, super tender. I need to get back to that meat counter and pick up some more. We also had sliced flank steak and baked potato skins. Vanilla cupcakes and ice cream, of course.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Then last night I made a saffron chicken pasta dish that was outstanding. It was a restaurant recipe from last month's BA and it was quick to put together, and had wonderful flavor. I served the braised thighs over lemon basil papparadelle and some baby spinach in with it, the boys inhaled theirs and my DH was even home early enough to have a bowl. Not much leftover, but I will be making it again soon. It was like have chicken noodle soup without the broth.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Tonight, after a long week, and one sick kid home from school, I'm opting for the prepped carne asada under the broiler with some bell pepper, onion, and baked chili beans. Corn tortillas, avocados, olives, and shredded cheese, some pico de gallo. Done. Excited to go out for my belated birthday dinner tomorrow night!! Woot Woot!!

                                                                                                                                                                                          16 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 17, 2010 05:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                            I saw that saffron chicken recipe and was wondering about it (love saffron). Good to know.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: buttertart
                                                                                                                                                                                              ChristinaMason Sep 19, 2010 08:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                              Is it this recipe? http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/201...

                                                                                                                                                                                              1 tsp. seems like a LOT of saffron. Did you use that much?

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                buttertart Sep 20, 2010 07:15 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                It is, isn't it (maybe because of the cream? that attenuates the flavor). I haven't made the recipe but thought it looked appealing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason
                                                                                                                                                                                                  Phurstluv Sep 20, 2010 09:20 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, Christina, that's it and I did use about a whole teaspoon, since I have two jars of it, I was glad to use some, I don't use it very often.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  It gave the dish a wonderful flavor, I didn't use cream b/c of my milk issues, I used fat free skim even, and it was really good. Not as creamy, I'm sure, but very tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                boyzoma Sep 17, 2010 05:14 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                Wow, you have been busy. I don't envy you. But, been there done that. On another note, I hope you have a wonderful birthday dinner tomorrow. Be sure to share your experience and enjoy!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                  mariacarmen Sep 17, 2010 05:20 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                  happy bd PL!! and to your little boy. That saffron chicken pasta dish sounds very intriguing. i missed it, somehow, in my issue of BA. hope you are being taken out for your bday! or at least that someone good is cooking for you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cherylptw Sep 17, 2010 06:43 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Happy early birthday, hope you enjoy your night out tomorrow....sorry to hear about your sick son; hope he gets better really soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                      mebby Sep 17, 2010 07:09 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Happy Bday, Phurstluv! Been there on the slumber parties -- whew are they a lot of work, but the kids have so much fun we just keep doing them. Congratulations on the whole celebratory season!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      More on topic, I'm limping out of first week back to school with a combo delivery Thai for adults and our third time in the last three weeks (including a week on vacation) on the Indonesian spicy grilled chicken from last month's COTM, Complete Asian Cookbook, for the kids -- they are obsessed with it. Good news is I'm also teaching them how to make it themselves (prep, not grilling).

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mebby
                                                                                                                                                                                                        mariacarmen Sep 17, 2010 10:26 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        hi Mebby, Is the recipe for the indonesian chicken on the COTM thread? or can you post it here please?

                                                                                                                                                                                                        edit: Never mind, i got off my lazy cyber but and checked out that thread, and copied the recipe: cut and pasted from another poster - "blended the marinade in a food processor - sambal ulek, onion, garlic, dark soy, palm sugar, lemon juice, peanut oil, black pepper and salt. I basted with the leftover marinade a few times and made a sauce with the pan drippings to drizzle over. " and I noted that you added more sambal and garlic, which i'm all for.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen
                                                                                                                                                                                                          mebby Sep 19, 2010 09:27 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hi MC,
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Belatedly, here are the ingredient proportions and quick paraphrase, since I noticed they weren't included on the COTM thread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Grilled Chicken with Hot Spices (Ayam Panggang Pedis)
                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 lb roasting chicken (cut into serving pieces)
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tsp salt
                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 tsp ground black pepper
                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 tsp sambal ulek or ground fresh red chilli
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tbsp finely grated onion
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 cloves garlic, crushed
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tbsp dark soy sauce
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tsp palm sugar or substitute
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tbsp lemon juice
                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 tbsp peanut oil

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Score meat so flavors can penetrate. Combine all other ingredients (I just mixed it in a bowl, not a food processor), marinate the chicken for at least one hour. Grill chicken on indirect heat (note that in the COTM, Rubee also did a variation of this with a whole roast chicken that looked pretty spectacular).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I've done this recipe about three times so far and it's turned out great every time. The second time I also reduced some of the marinade down per Rubee's suggestion to serve as a sauce, which was delicious. And I love that pretty much all the ingredients are things you generally have in the house (with the possible exception of palm sugar, but I got a big jar of that for that COTM) and it's ridiculously easy. As I noted in the review, I up the garlic and sambal ulek (proportions above are from the recipe -- I added at least another tsp of sambal and a couple more garlic cloves).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hope you enjoy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mebby
                                                                                                                                                                                                            mariacarmen Sep 19, 2010 11:30 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            oh thanks! i need to buy the dark soy and the sambal, but i live near a lot of asian markets, so shouldn't be a problem. and I like intense flavors too, so i'll follow your lead about the garlic and sambal. thanks again!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                        onceadaylily Sep 17, 2010 07:11 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Happy birthday, Phurst. I hope you have a wonderful time, and that your boy bounces back quickly enough for you to truly enjoy it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                          onceadaylily Sep 17, 2010 07:24 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Oh, and if Phurst or Buttertart could let me know if the paccheri pasta with braised chicken and saffron cream is the one being oohed over, I would appreciate it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: onceadaylily
                                                                                                                                                                                                            buttertart Sep 18, 2010 03:50 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes'm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Phurstluv
                                                                                                                                                                                                          LindaWhit Sep 18, 2010 04:48 AM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          You've been eating VERY well this past week, Phurstluv - and I'm glad your survived the sugar-laden sleepover. :-) Enjoy your birthday dinner tonight!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Phurstluv Sep 19, 2010 04:07 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thank you all for the birthday greetings, I really do appreciate it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, Lily, that would be the one. I couldn't find that shape of pasta at my stores, so I used Trader Joe's lemon basil papparadelle, and it was really good. I will have to pick that up regularly. Yes, that's a keeper, it was very tasty, relatively easy for a weeknight meal, and was comfort food. All good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            My birthday dinner was amazing. We visited a tiny Italian spot that has been on Venice Beach for years. We both had seared scallops with a truffle-parmesan fondue, amazing. My favorite Italian white to go with it, Gavi di Gavi. It seems to be a hard to find wine out here, but I had it so many years ago in the North End in Boston, and have always kept my eye out for it whenever we go out for Italian. Might have to break down and buy a case of it for the wine fridge. The main for me was a quail carbonara. It was as good as it sounds - 'nuff said. DH had a lovely pork loin chop, and we had a nice mellow Sicilian red that worked beautifully with both dishes. Didn't have time (had to pick kids back up @ another classmate's birthday party) for dessert. Next time we go, I will def not miss it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks again for all the lovely wishes - you all made my weekend!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. boyzoma Sep 17, 2010 05:13 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                          We've hit the 200 mark again, so here is the link to the new thread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7348...

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. YAYME Sep 19, 2010 12:35 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Seasame Citrus marinaded chicken, and Butternut squash and cabbage soup.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: YAYME
                                                                                                                                                                                                              LindaWhit Sep 19, 2010 12:40 PM

                                                                                                                                                                                                              YAYME, just so you know, a new thread was started a few days ago. You can find it here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7348...

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