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Nov 19, 2010 10:15 PM

What's For Dinner? Part LX

Welcome and please share what's going on your dinner plate this evening. Inspire us with what you're planning for the upcoming days leading to the holidays as they unfold and any other delicious thoughts & tidbits both simple & extravagant.

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  1. I need to get some chicken stock frozen away for the Christmas lunch gravy so we're roasting a bird for dinner.

    I'm also having having a trial run of a festive vegetable idea - basically serving them in a loaf shape. So, some carrots, swedes and celeriac are getting boiled separately. They'll then be mashed (but still retaining some texture) and seasoned and mixed with a little beaten egg. They then go into a loaf tin in the three layers and it's baked for about 30 minutes. The theory is that you can then turn out the "loaf" and slice it to serve. If it works, it should be damn pretty (and I'll think about exactly what root veg I'll do on Xmas Day). If it doesnt, it'll get mixed up and fried as a sort of "bubble & squeak" tomorrow.

    There's veg soup to start and cheese & celery for afters.

    9 Replies
    1. re: Harters

      That does sound pretty - does it bake in a bain-marie or just in the oven? and what's a swede?

      1. re: mariacarmen

        Maria - swede is what I believe Americans call rutabaga. . It's also what the Scots call a turnip when they refer to "Neeps" as in "neeps and tatties". Although it gets confusing as they also call turnip a turnip. And it bakes straight in the oven.

        I'm already thinking how different colour combos could work for different meals - you've got a sort of veggie tricolour flag there - so say, carrot/brussel sprouts/potato for an Irish based meal?

        1. re: Harters

          Yes, it's what we call rutabaga, specifically, which I love.

          I enjoyed the pet photos while they lasted, and I was surprised they lasted as long as they did.

          1. re: Harters

            oh, ok, but we have turnips AND rutabagas here, and i know they're similar but not exactly the same, right?

            1. re: mariacarmen

              I think it's size & colour that distinguishes them. Turnips are usually smallish and white fleshed. Swede/rutabaga larger and orange fleshed.

              1. re: Harters

                Exactly. The rutabaga found in supermarkets/farmer's markets this time of year are usually waxed. Turnips are white with purple tops, and smaller. I prefer rutabaga for mashing, but turnips are good.

        2. re: Harters

          Ah well, the veggie loaf wasnt a winner. It didnt hold its shape well and the flavours of the veg just blurred into one. Nothing really shone. Back to the drawing board for the festive lunch - it's been a couple of years since we've had to cook the big event and we like to do "something" a little different from the entirely traditional.

          1. re: Harters

            Sorry to hear it didn't work out the way you'd hoped but we know you've got great leftovers for breakfast!!

            I know these weren't all the veg you were looking to use but I think the visual effect is what you were after so I've pasted a link to a recipe below in case its something you want to play with:


            1. re: Harters

              good thing you tried it out first! ah well... it sounded yummy.

          2. Tonight is:

            A starter of French Onion Soup, with fresh bakery baguette and Swiss to top.

            Beef Bourguignon over a bed of egg noodles.
            Asparagus and cherry tomatoes sauteed with garlic, olive oil and Balsamic reductions....

            Am completely excited!

            3 Replies
            1. re: chefmindy

              We had beef bourguignon over egg noodles last night. It was so good. The leftovers will probably be lunch today. :) I was going to serve them for dinner, but I doubt they'll last that long.

              1. re: tzurriz

                I get so excited when I make it! The wine....oh man. Do you find it's better after a day? The wine gets a chance to become more prominent after being in the fridge. My girlfriends think it's weird how I serve it over egg noodles, they do roasted or mashed potatoes...personally, its nice to see someone else who uses egg noodles. I enjoy the texture.

                1. re: chefmindy

                  I love it, same day, next day, whatever. And it has to go over egg noodles, it's like law or something. :)

            2. Tonight it's all about Italy. To start, 2 kinds of Bruschetta: a ricotta w spicy broccoli rabe and, "alla Romana" w an anchovy egg puree over buffalo mozzarella. Pasta as our main. Mr bc picked Garganelli & Chicken Ragout w Saffron from my "La Mia Cucina Toscana" cookbook (which I many yummy recipes.) First time I've made this pasta though so we'll see how it goes.

              1. Well, the crab last night was one of the best I've had in a long time. So buttery, I ate it as is. It really needed nothing to compliment it.
                The salad I'd intended to dress and have WITH the meat was lovely too. Afterwards, by itself as well.
                Tonight is promising to be another cold and rainy one. I wish I had the beef burgundy you all are getting ready to enjoy in my fridge, but alas, did not plan so well.
                Maybe I'll pull out my lamb chops, they deserve to be eaten. With a nice wild rice/brown rice pilaf maybe, and I did get my first celeriac of the season at yesterdays farmers market.
                Not too shabby.
                I am hoping to get home from work this afternoon with enough time and energy to pull off a braise of some kind for Sunday supper. Got MStevens book yesterday from the library, which everyone on the COTM thread seems to adore.

                9 Replies
                1. re: rabaja

                  I love crab, one of my favourite meals and like you, I get so involved eating it, everything else gets forgotten in the moment!! Glad it turned out well.

                  Funny you mentioned the celeriac and the braising book because I was just looking at a lovely braised celeriac recipe in MAOFC. It has bacon. Need I say more!!!

                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                    Have to say, I do a very decent celeriac & bacon soup - the two do go together excellently.

                    1. re: Harters

                      Mmmm Harters, that sounds truly scrumptious!!

                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                        Fry an onion & a clove of garlic for a bit then chuck in around 350g smoked bacon and let that get going then add 350g celeriac and fry for a couple of minutes. Add in about 1ltr veg or ham stock and simmer till the celeriac is soft. Whizz in a processor.

                        If you had another rasher or two of bacon, it'd have been a great idea to have chopped it and fried till crisp. Scatter the bits and a little fresh thyme on top as you serve (4 decent sized portions)

                          1. re: Harters

                            Harters, thanks so much for sharing this. I've added celeriac to my grocery list for next week, I just have to make this. Love the thyme & crispy bacon on top too...I can almost smell it now!

                            1. re: Harters

                              Well, I couldn't stop thinking about this soup Harters so we took a drive to our local farm market today and I bought up all their remaining celeriac...this should keep me "in soup" for the full winter!! I'll be making it this week! Thanks again.

                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                          my sister has a ritual with crab. she turns up the heat in her house full blast, puts on shorts, gets down on the floor in front of the t.v. with newspapers out and and a steamed crab, and meticulously picks every little last teensy bit of meat out of every crustaceous cranny. she frowns at me if i leave anything behind!

                        2. re: rabaja

                          I'm one of the many Stevens enthusiasts; love that book.

                        3. I hadn't realized a new thread had already been started, since the other one was barely at 200. So I'll repost here:

                          I have some apple cider that's beginning to go, so I'll use a bit of it in tonight's dinner (and probably the rest with ribs tomorrow). Having apples and sweet potatoes in the house makes it an easy decision for dinner. IIRC, the last time I made this, the sweet potatoes and apples ended up mushy (cut too thinly) so I'm going to quarter the apples and leave the sweets in 1" thickness (vs. slices and 1/2" slices, respectively). I think peas alongside.

                          * Exported from MasterCook *

                          Baked Chicken With Sweet Potatoes & Apples

                          Recipe By :Linda
                          Serving Size : 2 Preparation Time :0:00
                          Categories : Poultry

                          Amount Measure Ingredient -- Preparation Method
                          -------- ------------ --------------------------------
                          2 small boned and skinned chicken breast halves
                          1 tsp ground ginger
                          1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
                          1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
                          1 large sweet potato -- peeled, par-cooked, and then cut into 1 inch slices
                          1 large apple -- peeled and quartered
                          2 tsp grated orange peel
                          1/2 cup apple cider

                          Mix together ginger, nutmeg and pepper; sprinkle on all sides of chicken.

                          In shallow 2-quart baking dish, arrange chicken in single layer. Place sliced sweet potatoes and apple quarters around chicken. Sprinkle with orange peel and pour apple cider over all. Bake in 400°F. oven about 1 hour or until fork can be inserted in chicken with ease, basting with liquid in dish several times.

                          - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

                          Per Serving (excluding unknown items): 276 Calories; 2g Fat (7.0% calories from fat); 29g Protein; 35g Carbohydrate; 4g Dietary Fiber; 68mg Cholesterol; 88mg Sodium. Exchanges: 1 Grain(Starch); 4 Lean Meat; 1 Fruit; 0 Fat.

                          NOTES : Adapted from a recipe at

                          2 Replies
                          1. re: LindaWhit

                            Linda - Does this not end up being a bit sweet? Or does the orange peel counterbalance?

                            1. re: Harters

                              The ginger gives it a good bit of spice, Harters, and the apple cider I use is unpasteurized (and as I said, it's begun to ferment a bit in my fridge) so it's actually more tart than sweet. But yes, there is a hint of sweetness to it what with the cider, nutmeg and apples.