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WHAT'S FOR DINNER PART LXIV / PART 64

Something sure does smell good, coming outta your kitchen... tell us all about it!

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  1. That's fried chicken being made by the DH. Plus squash casserole and rice and gravy. Sure can't wait until dinner is ready!

    2 Replies
    1. re: roxlet

      i knew i smelled something yummy! enjoy....

      1. reposting here.

        i lied. Am cooking even though going to the persian party (after all, that's at like 11:00 p.m. tonight, a girl still needs dinner!) Spatchcocked chicken is air drying in the fridge. Under the skin is fresh thyme and rosemary, black pepper, sea salt, granulated onion and granulated garlic, and toasted hot chili flakes. Over the skin is kosher salt, more granulated garlic, aleppo pepper and sumac. Sitting underneath it is a bed of rosemary and thyme stalks, and purple and rose peruvian fingerling potatoes. Will roast at 450 for about 50 minutes, serve with a salad of some sort. i should probably take a nap at some point...

        6 Replies
        1. re: mariacarmen

          ...Just made note of your seasonings - this sounds as good as, if not better than, anything Zuni ever made. Have a great time at the par-tay! Take a cab!

          1. re: mamachef

            I'm pretty sure those spices were inspired by passadumkeg, at one point or another.
            thanks, and i'm not driving!

          2. re: mariacarmen

            That chicken sounds FABULOUS! Enjoy the overnight party tonight!

            1. re: LindaWhit

              it was really good. i thought maybe i'd oversalted it, but nope. crispy salty skin (which my dumb BF made a pile of on his plate - at which point it had wilted - and was going to toss! i of course snagged it in an outrage and gobbled it all up. Love him, but sheesh....

              1. re: mariacarmen

                I love the sound of your chicken; an aromatic improvement over my typical rosemary-less roast. The skin must have been especially flavorful!

                1. re: JungMann

                  it really was, which is why i suffered outrage at seeing the BF about to toss it!

          3. BBQ pulled pork, fried potatoes & onions, green beans simmered with bacon....

            1 Reply
            1. re: Cherylptw

              yum. fried potatoes made my mouth water.

            2. Ahh, you caught me. Tonight I made "cheater peroshkis", carrots and sugar snap peas.

              Cheater peroshkis are ridiculously easy, and surprisingly tasty. My father-in-law thinks they are the best thing ever, and asks me to make them whenever he is here.

              2 containers refrigerated crescent roll dough (yes, I know, it's horrible ghastly stuff for a foodie, but oh so good for this!)
              1/2 lb ground beef
              1/2 an onion, diced
              3 cloves garlic, minced
              4 slices of your favorite cheese, tonight I used Dubliner. cut each in half

              Brown up the ground beef with the onions and garlic, drain. Open up the cans of dough. Separate them into rectangles, leaving two of the pre-cut triangles together for each. You should have 8 rectangles. Spoon a bit of the meat onto one side of each rectangle and top with a 1/2 slice of cheese. Fold over and crimp the dough, making it into a pocket. Bake according to the directions on the package. In my case it was 375F for 14 minutes.

              Meanwhile make up a very simple marinara sauce according to your own taste, and thicken it with one beaten egg.

              Serve each peroshki with the sauce spooned over the top. Yum. Leftovers make great lunches by the way, without the sauce.

              4 Replies
              1. re: tzurriz

                i don't care how "unfoodie" that is, i'm going to try this!

                1. re: mariacarmen

                  Please, let me know what you think. It's a favorite in our house.

                2. re: tzurriz

                  I've done similar things with poultry.

                  I *love* buying a couple of tubes of crescent dough and 're-purposing' it. It's buttery, flaky, and doesn't require a damp towel and quick hands. It's tricky to use as a crust, as it requires a bit of pre-baking at a low temp (it burns rather quickly), but, really, it's just dough. Dough in a tube. it used to be a really cheap fix, but the price has gone up in the last few years. Phyllo is now cheaper (I have mixed feelings about this).

                  1. re: tzurriz

                    That sounds great. You could do this with keema curry too. I'd like one right now.

                  2. From Raghavan Iyer's 660 curries

                     
                     
                    3 Replies
                      1. re: sushigirlie

                        I have that book. WHich recipes are these?

                        1. re: roxlet

                          Wok-seared chicken with mustard greens and spicy soy sauce. I made this in a big skillet. I made my own five-spice powder. This recipe came out great first time, no difficulties. Definitely recommended.

                          Perfumed basmati rice with black cardamom pods. Very easy.

                          Green and red chiles with cracked mustard. (I used only green chiles.)

                      2. Nothing out of my kitchen tonight (except the mac & ham & cheese I made for the holiday open house I attended this afternoon!). Reposting from the previous thread:

                        I went with "out" at my favorite tapas restaurant, and wasn't disappointed. I love being a regular. :-) Lomo de Buey (beef tenderloin with dried apricots and prunes in a cognac cream sauce) and Pincho de Pez Espada (swordfish, grapes and onions broiled and served with lemon) did the trick to take the hungries away. Plenty of sangria, and a half-portion of Churros for dessert (along with Licor 43, a vanilla liqueur) and two of my favorite waitstaff dancing to a great salsa tune as my Christmas present. I love these people! :-D

                        7 Replies
                        1. re: LindaWhit

                          You should love those people, and I don't doubt they love you. Dried fruit is under-used in cooking (in the US), I think, aside from raisins. I'm going out for tapas on Tuesday, and I can't wait.

                          Apricots and prunes in a cognac cream sauce. I'm going to have to play with that one.

                          1. re: onceadaylily

                            OADL, this is SERIOUSLY SERIOUSLY drop-dead great. The last time I was there a month ago, it was a special tapa (it used to be on their main plate menu but they dropped it about six months ago). When I got there tonight, one of the bartenders told me that while it was no longer on the monthly special tapas menu, they were still making it for "those who know". I got it again and it was just as good as I remembered. The prunes and apricots are essentially stewed in the cognac cream sauce, and the beef tenderloin slice is quickly grilled/broiled and then slid into the fruited cream sauce in the cazuela to stay warm in the sauce. Simply superb.

                            1. re: LindaWhit

                              maybe you could persuade your friends at the tapas place to give you a little more detail as to how they make that? sounds divine. glad you went out and had a good time!

                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                I have ideas for this combination, and echo mariacarmen in teasing a bit more info out of those people. It sounds delicious.

                                1. re: onceadaylily

                                  The description is: Lomo de Buey a las Frutas - Beef Tenderloin with Dried Figs, Apricots & Prunes in a Cream Brandy Sauce.

                                  Epicurious.com has a cognac cream sauce that I use for beef tenderloin that I think would work - just simmer the figs, apricots and prunes in the cognac sauce while it simmers to give it the deeper, fruitier flavor. Perhaps omit the shallots, as there's definitely none in the Dali recipe.

                                  http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                    that sounds wonderful. thanks Linda!

                            2. re: LindaWhit

                              I've done a similar with pork fillet - apricots, prunes, cream sauce. Nice.

                            3. Thursday- DH grilled a beautiful turkey, made mashed potatoes and steamed some broccoli. YUM!
                              Friday,I made my dressing for Thanksgiving, but we went elsewhere and were jonesing for leftovers. I put in some dried cherries and toasted walnuts.
                              Saturday- reheated dressing and turkey, DH cooked brussels sprouts from TJ's, he had turkey + and i had dressing and brussels sprouts, which were microwaved but should have been sauteed in walnut oil. JMHO.

                              1 Reply
                              1. re: EWSflash

                                Dressing for Thanksgiving? Do you mean Christmas, EWS?

                              2. Garbage soup--cleaning out the fridge and crisper so in goes some leftover pot roast along with the broth and cooked carrots and potatoes, a little piece of grilled NY strip cut up, some steamed broccoli, some leftover corn, and some baby lima beans.

                                1. I catered a Christmas party last night so I'm exhausted and luckily I had the forethought to marinate a pork butt yesterday.

                                  Tonight is going to be Puerto Rican night! My husband is Puerto Rican and ever since we moved from CT (huge PR population), we don't get a chance to eat it very much. I rubbed a pork butt with crushed garlic, salt, pepper and oregano and I'll roast it until the meat falls apart and the fat becomes crispy like a chip. To go along with it I'll make arroz con gandules with homemade sofrito and lots of olives and capers, and of course, the quintessential tostones with garlicky mojo for dipping.

                                  Dessert is leftover tiramisu cake from the holiday party - nothing to do with Puerto Rican food, but just as delicious.

                                  7 Replies
                                  1. re: krisrishere

                                    That sounds divine. Roast pork and crackling, what's better than that?

                                    1. re: buttertart

                                      Nothing. I've decided that it's my favorite thing on the face of this planet. Don't tell my husband, dog or family ;)

                                    2. re: krisrishere

                                      is that Pork Pernil? love making that, so much. and you can make killer cubanos the next day.

                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                        Yup, pernil. It was divine :) I was so proud of my arroz con gandules because I've finally perfected pegao (a.k.a. crispy brown rice at the bottom of the pan) - it's the telltale sign of a good pot and cook!

                                        1. re: krisrishere

                                          i love the spelling of that - "pegao" - the colloquial pronunciation of "pegado" - literally, "stuck" or stuck on.

                                          i didn't know Puerto Ricans did that. i know Persians do....

                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                            I never knew pegao was a PR contraction. I find that quite entertaining; personally I've always called it soccarat or tutong, which is the Filipino word for the same thing. Seems like crispy rice is an international phenomenon.

                                            1. re: JungMann

                                              People in the know, know about the deliciousness of crispy rice :)

                                    3. Friday night was a biscuit-topped chicken pie, the sauce made of the stock I've been keeping going since Thanksgiving (is now pheasant, turkey, and chicken, duck added Sat) and white wine thickened with Wondra flour, just breast of chicken and the oysters in the pie (our preference), Salad.
                                      Last night had friends over for an early Christmas dinner - was supposed to be goose but the only ones we saw were $10.00 a lb, and since a 12-14 lb goose really only serves 6 people (plus stocks the fridge with goose fat, of course, but I have a lot of it already) it seemed a bit much. Even at Christmas. So...wrapped two ducks in heavy-duty foil, roasted them on a sheet pan at 325 deg F for 90 mins, opened them and let cool until handleable (this to render the fat, i usually steam ducks for an hour before cooking them but the steamer was not to hand and I thought of this as an alternative - worked well). Chilled them uncovered. Put the giblets and neck in the sempiternal stock, and the fat in a pan to render before this, poured the 3 cups of fat and juices from the birds in with the rendered fat and cooked it to boil off the juice. Roasted the ducks uncovered at 325 deg F or so for another 2 hours, with garlic and s&p in the cavities.
                                      Nibbles: 6-year-old Balderson cheddar from Canada with (my) rye bread melba toasts - guests were amazed at how good and smooth the old cheese was.
                                      Before: cream of chestnut soup with Cognac.
                                      With: small cubes of potato done in some of the duck fat, turned over high heat until starting to brown, salted, covered, let cook over lower heat until softish, then uncovered and browned, and a butter lettuce salad with clementine sections marinated in Sherry vinegar with some of the grated peel, olive oil, slivered black oil-cured olives. Applesauce made with Stayman Winesap apples that I peeled and cooked with a small amount of water with the peels returned to them - strained it - it made the most glorious coral-pink colored sauce. Only this morning did I reflect that since I intended to strain it I could have done the apples unpeeled...sheesh...
                                      Dessert was Dorie Greenspan's 15-minute miracle from "Baking", a torte made with ground almonds and amaretti, in the FP - more on it on the chocolate desserts for the festive table thread: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7535.... Very good and very easy.

                                      6 Replies
                                      1. re: buttertart

                                        What a wonderful pre-holiday feast, buttertart! You are definitely back on your cooking game! :-)

                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                          It's always nice to cook for good friends - we were supposed to get together the first weekend I was sick, so it was a good celebration of the season and of me being better.

                                          1. re: buttertart

                                            Yes, it sounds like wonderful reasons for a celebration, especially the latter. :-)

                                        2. re: buttertart

                                          BT, how IN HELL are you going to top that for the actual holiday??? sounds amazing. and actually, i really have no doubt that you will...

                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                            Probably not, it will just be the two of us - may be Cornish game hens with oranges and lemons (an Elizabeth Luard pheasant recipe with Seville oranges, adapted). Not sure yet.

                                        3. Luganega sausage (shop made at the only Italian deli in the metro area - and, of course, that would be on the directly opposite side of the area from where I live, so that's a good 25 minutes drive round the orbital). They'll get fried and tossed through some lentils that'll have been braising in onion, garlic and red wine. Maybe a few salad leaves alongside.

                                          1. Tonight I'm making the spicy pumpkin soup that I intended to make before the flu started pushing me around. Onions, garlic and tomato are sauteed, then pumpkin puree and cream are whirred into it a with the immersion blender, and then add a few cups broth (some of the frozen turkey stock), and the seasonings. I know it will have salt, pepper, and crushed red pepper, but If it needs more, then I'll add a bit of coriander, and possibly some brown sugar. I might sneak in a Telma mushroom cube or two if it needs more 'earthiness', but I think the stock is rich enough.

                                            We bought a very large wheel of brie last night (which we ate with crackers and fiji apples), but we have quite a lot of it left, so there will be toasted cheese sandwiches to go with. I'm half-tempted to scrap the soup and do scrambled eggs with brie, but there's always tomorrow.

                                            1. Well, today I am cooking ahead. First of all, I am making some good old chili for tomorrow's dinner since it is always best the day after (and I'll be fighting the holiday crowds in the store for last minute gifts anyway). So into a pot went some browned ground beef, sauteed onions, celery and green pepper. Added to that are kidney and pinto beans, cumin, chili powder, cayenne pepper, minced habanero and jalapeno peppers, garlic powder, diced tomatoes, tomato sauce and will get topped with fresh diced onion and cheddar cheese. But - that is for tomorrow night.

                                              Also in the oven is Whole Wheat Banana Nut Bread. DH is going to take this to the office tomorrow for his co-workers. We had some bananas that needed used, so why not?

                                              Lastly today, I am making meatloaf with country gravy, cheesy mashed potatoes and maple glazed baby carrots for tonight's dinner. The meatloaf is waiting for the oven, the potatoes are peeled and the carrots are in the steamer waiting to have the burner turned on. I just have to turn on the knobs, wait till they are done, mash the potatoes, make gravy and glaze the carrots. Dinner done. DH does the dishes!

                                              Ok - think I'll be done for the day!

                                              1. I've been tossing around ideas in my head for dinner tonight - knew it was going to be chicken and sweet potatoes; didn't know how. I ended up blending canola oil, maple syrup, freshly grated ginger, salt and pepper in a small jar and tossing it with chunked sweet potatoes. They'll go into the oven at about 375-400 degrees for about 15 minutes, then I'll slide the two b/s chicken breasts into the maple-ginger mixture, turn them a couple of times to coat them with the mixture, and finish baking (basting on occasion). The other "side" will be peas and corn.

                                                3 Replies
                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                  wow - you and maple syrup - always an inspiration to me. i'm going to have to copy that marinade - love the ginger with the syrup.

                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                    Me and ginger are pals, mariacarmen. And I've introduced ginger and maple, and they like each other as well. :-) I like the nice tang ginger gives to counter the sweetness of the maple syrup.

                                                    And yes, boyzoma - I've got all sorts of sizes of clean jars that used to contain marmalade, jelly, or mayo, and I use them ALL the time for a quick marinade shake-up...and like you, to make a flour/spice/water slurry to thicken gravy drippings is the best use. :-)

                                                  2. re: LindaWhit

                                                    Don't ya just love the fact that you can use a pint mason jar on a blender for a quick whirl of ingredients! If my blender is already out, it is the fastest way to do a no-lump slurry for gravy or quick roasted red pepper puree for some pan seared scallops?

                                                  3. Prawns with kaffir lime leaves (must use 'em up!) with a ginger lime dip over udon noodles. Green beans with roasted lemon and toasted pistachios. Dessert is chocolate caramel buttercream cake. Yum!

                                                    1. Up in Berkeley for lunch today, and stopped by the Oasis market on Telegraph. I picked up some falafel they made in front of my eyes with some fresh pita bread, and at home I'll make a raita with whole-milk yogurt, cumin, cayenne, garlic, lemon, cucumber and tomato, and chop some mild onions to top it. Side dish of hummus; some olives, feta and (deli-made) stuffed grape leaves with rice, lamb, mint and currants - they're about the size of a small cigar and manoman are they good and addictive. Best hummus-raft I can think of.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. Tonight was lamb meatballs stuffed with feta simmered in tomato sauce with mint & garlic; these were served over hot noodles. On the side, a warm roma tomato salad sauteed in olive oil then tossed with champagne vinegar, cucumbers and oregano.

                                                        2 Replies
                                                        1. re: Cherylptw

                                                          cheryl, that sounds wonderful. were the the noodles wide egg noodles, or what? that's what i'm picturing.

                                                          a lot of you on here i've seen will warm/saute/something your tomatoes in the winter months, when tomatoes are not great, and then incorporate them into a salad. i'd never seen that before reading this thread. do you let them cool down first? the most i do is maybe let my tomatoes soak in the dressing for awhile before putting them in a salad. i know it's all about trying to give them some flavor....

                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                            Actually, I used the thin egg noodles this time as it's what I had on hand. As to the tomatoes, when I'm making this salad, I don't cool down the tomatoes but use them straight from the skillet along with the oil. I love the warm tomatoes, room temp/cold cucumbers (in this case, but sometimes use lettuce/tomato combo) mix. I also use this method in summer not necessarily because the flavor is lacking, I think it enhances a summer tomato also.

                                                        2. Solstice party last night was great, tho i was steered wrong - by the time i got there at 11:00, more than half the food was gone! thank goodness i'd eaten my roast chicken dinner. there was some fabulous bean/noodle soup that you were invited to add a spoonful of what appeared to be pesto into -DELICIOUS. the rest was kind of a mishmash. anyway, whole night was amazing-performances, live music, gorgeous exotic people, kids hanging out with their adult relatives willingly! we made it to 5:00 a.m. - sunrise was 7-something, but we could not make it that long.

                                                          tonight we were invited to a friend's home for dinner. she made a white wine coq au vin, and i added to the meal with steamed shaved asparagus with a pseudo gribiche - chopped up hard boiled eggs on top of the asparagus and then a dijon lemon shallot dressing over the that. the same dressing went on a salad of endive chopped up, mixed with candied walnuts, sliced pears, and gorgonzola. plus like 50 glasses of wine and a pound or two of brie and goat cheese. i'm in a food coma.

                                                          1. Having a surprise day of cool weather today has meant the oven is on and after a hard days baking ninja bread men something simple is in order. So currently the delicious smells of a roast chicken stuffed with lemon and garlic are wafting towards me as I type. Roast duck fat potatoes, roasted carrots and green beans to accompany. Mmmmmm.

                                                            1. We had been planning to go out to dinner at a localish bistro. However, I've woken up today with man flu. Now that means that I just want to lie on the sofa and have warm drinks prepared for me, and soothing words uttered.

                                                              So, no bistro. Instead, a freezer raid has turned up some lemon sole goujons, oven chips and peas. It'll do.

                                                              16 Replies
                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                Awwww, Harters. You just lay there on the couch. Let me get you a pillow and a toddy and a blanket. Just turn on the telly, sleep when you can and relax. Take two aspirin; call me in the morning. Wait. If you're drinking toddies, don't take aspirin. Let me know when you're ready for some hot broth; we've got to keep you hydrated. You feel better now.

                                                                1. re: mamachef

                                                                  Well, thank you, mamachef. I'm starting to feel a little better already. I don't drink alcohol these days, but the broth sounds nice - may I have it in a mug so I can just sip, rather than the effort of using a spoon? Man flu is a truly terrible thing. That said, so is daytime TV!

                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                    I'm still trying to figure out what man flu is, but when I had the . . . woman flu, my DVR was a good, good friend to me. Eat your peas. Feel better soon.

                                                                    1. re: onceadaylily

                                                                      Man flu is a particularly virulent form of flu that only affects men. It requires much care and attention from one's life partner. It means the man is unable to function at all normally. Women can also be affected by the same virus but they describe it as "having a bit of a cold" :-0

                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                        And women soldier on in the traditional "Man may work from sun to sun, but women's work is never done" mode! Enjoy your horizontal status, H!

                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                          When I was sick last week, I would greet the boyfriend at the door, simply to proclaim, again, just how sick I was, before I flounced back to the couch. If he came within a foot of me, I would grab his hand, pressing it to my brow, so that he could be properly impressed by my fever.

                                                                          Maybe I was struck by a mutated strain of man flu: Diva flu.

                                                                          1. re: onceadaylily

                                                                            OADL - you displayed almost classic symptoms. Except for the flouncing - much too much exertion.

                                                                            Some help for those wondering if their man might have man flu - check out the symptoms page. http://manflu.org.uk/

                                                                            1. re: onceadaylily

                                                                              Meself, I like to toss and turn in bed, making little moany sighs and shuddering until Mr. wakes up, which was the original intent. Then, when he asks me what's wrong, I bravely say, "Oh, it's nothing...I'm o-o-ok-k-k-k-k-kaught hack hack cough. Please, can you feel my head? I just feel so funnnnny......"
                                                                              Thankfully, today I'm not the sick one. Up to youngmanland early on, where today's game plan is to clean out the fridge, which means always, SOUP!! WONDERFUL BEAUTIFUL SOOOO-OOOP!! Some sort of veggie/beef combo, and a sandwich board, and a German potato salad with bacon (portion aside for the vegs.) I'll take an inventory, and start soaking pinto beans for Taco Tuesday, maybe make a classic taco filling ahead of time, but that's kinda big talkin' right now, 'cause I'm at home and who knows what I'll feel like doing when I actually get there? At home, Mr.'s been very good about dealing with a serious craving for chili dogs, so I will succor that, using Miller's h.d's and some Stagg Chili Laredo and Steinhardt's jar o' kraut. I'll bring some of that potato salad on home, and dinner's done, in like, 10 minutes. Happy happy happy. Great way to start the week.

                                                                          2. re: onceadaylily

                                                                            i was just wondering the same thing re man flu. maybe it'll be gone before he has a chance to tell us what it is. hopefully!

                                                                          3. re: Harters

                                                                            I can do you one better, Harters. Here at home, we have our sickiesippy mugs: Insulated, covered mugs with a built-in straw. Requires only the exertion of bending the straw to your specs., laying back, and swilling away. Double strength chicken broth with a little extra salt and some hot sauce or hot lime pickle stirred in. You'll be right as rain in no time flat, unless you're like my husband and would like to extend the situation just a bit.

                                                                            1. re: mamachef

                                                                              Oh, yes, I want one of those mugs!

                                                                              I reckon, in the UK, the standard soup to deal with all ills is Heinz tomato soup.

                                                                            2. re: Harters

                                                                              Man flu is a truly terrible thing. That said, so is daytime TV!
                                                                              ~~~~~~~~

                                                                              So daytime TV is as bad in the U.K. as it is in the States? Good to know. :-) As for your man flu, I hope a few virtual pats on the head and the accompanying "Awww, poor Harters!" helps you feel better soon. :-)

                                                                                1. re: buttertart

                                                                                  Now it's funny you should say that - as Carry on Screaming & Carry on Up the Khyber has indeed been on this afternoon. The latter is a classic of the double entendre for which the series is reknowned.

                                                                                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carry_On...

                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                    I LOVE those movies. So silly. How could you say afternoon TV was bad with those on?

                                                                          4. re: Harters

                                                                            Ha, when I read this I thought it was more of the malaise, 2 weeks in Akron, cold beer and "poor, poor dear" variety! (Harvey, 1950, Jimmy Stewart for those for whom this doesn't ring a bell). Glad to know there's an actual quasi-pathology, not that I don't recognize it well from my mister!

                                                                          5. I was going to make a green and white lasagna tonight, but it had escaped my notice that I never bought any ricotta. Huh. I may either wait until the boyfriend swoops in at the eleventh hour with a container of the stuff (he won't get here until after nine though), or compile a lasagna without it. And, of course, I only have two cups of milk to my name, and I need to add the majority of that to the spinach, so a bechamel is out of the question. I may wind up tossing the noodles out of my sight, and making a spinach and tomato pie. I just hate to say the word 'lasagna' to a man and then fail to deliver. That's a particular kind of disappointment.

                                                                            I have the noodles, spinach, mushrooms, tomatoes, parmesan, and brie (I'd planned on using brie instead of mozzarella). I have a bit of milk, and eggs, and sour cream. I have garlic, onions, and shallots. I guess what I am trying to say it, I am making *something* for dinner tonight. Aren't I informative.

                                                                            4 Replies
                                                                            1. re: onceadaylily

                                                                              If you've got whole milk and lemon, sweetie, you can make some ricotta in no time flat. Would you like a recipe?

                                                                              1. re: mamachef

                                                                                No milk, really (just half and half and one can of evaporated), and I'm out of lemons. If I had the lemon, I could at least turn my sour cream into something more interesting.

                                                                              2. re: onceadaylily

                                                                                What about a sort of "de-constructed" lasagna oadl? I'm assuming the spinach & milk were for a pureed sauce? I'm thinking, saute onions, garlic, shallot in butter add mushrooms. Let the brie melt into the mushroom mixture then add a bit of milk just to thin out the melted brie a bit. Assemble lasagna on plate (vs baking) w noodle, mushroom mixture, noodle, spinach sauce over top.

                                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                  Actually not a bad idea. I think I was stubbornly refusing to let go of the layers. If I use the cheese in a sauce, and maybe even use penne instead of lasagna noodles, I could just do a smaller quantity of baked pasta, and maybe even toss some gratin on top, as an apology. The boyfriend really loves lasagna, but he also adores gratin.

                                                                                  I'll leave it up to the boy: un-lasagna or Thai food delivery. Thanks for helping me figure out an option, BC.

                                                                              3. Last night I was pooped from the dinner party and from a whirlwind fruitcake session (3 hours total working time, from preparing the fruit, lining the pans with parchment, mixing up the batter, squishing it into the pans, covering them with Pam'd aluminum foil and getting them into the oven) so the daube I had in mind became the shepherd's pie I had in the fridge, with applesauce, ketchup, and Ronneburg cottage cheese, which qualifies as a salad as far as M is concerned - large curd cottage cheese mixed with 1/4 c buttermilk, a couple of sliced green onions, a good bit of salt and some fresh pepper. Quite good with the pie. It was only after we downed it that I saw the cottage cheese was way seriously past good-by date (try 3 months...!!!) - smelled and tasted just fine and absolutely no ill effects incurred. Life on the edge at ours.
                                                                                (PS the cottage cheese is a specialty of the Ronneburg restaurant in the Amana Colonies in Iowa, adopted by family as a staple.)

                                                                                1. Another day of rescuing produce from heading to the bin before I go on vacation. Today's challenge: mint, dill, cilantro, celery, cabbage, scallions, several pieces of lemon and a slice of lime, half a bell pepper, half a red onion, a quarter of a cucumber, a half pint of yogurt, a quarter pint of sour cream and several cheeses.

                                                                                  For someone whose fallbacks are typically Asian, these were some hard ingredients to combine into one dish. Dilled raita with mint seemed like the obvious choice for the cucumber, though it didn't use up much. So stage 2 was a dilled chicken salad. While I poached a chicken breast, I mixed minced dill and scallions to yogurt, sour cream, mayo, sambal and shredded cheddar cheese for a dressing base. I didn't have much rotini for the salad, so I also added shredded cabbage and diced red pepper for some color. Once the chicken had been cooled and shredded, that went into the salad which I adjusted for seasonings and served with a bit of sumac sprinkled on top. Although quite a mish mash of ingredients, it was still a delicious means of clearing out quite a bit of space in the fridge.

                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                  1. re: JungMann

                                                                                    That chicken salad sounds awesome, young man!

                                                                                    I have an 8 oz. bag of green peas that will go into an orecchiette dish along with some leftover pancetta, maybe some diced ham, and sautéed oyster mushrooms. I'd like to keep the dish light, but may still have to throw in some crème fraîche....

                                                                                  2. It's is yet another rainy, grey day here in Sonoma. I am thrilled with this cozy, stay by the fire, turn on the Christmas lights kind of day. The cat, not so much.
                                                                                    I am thinking braised chicken thighs with preserved lemon, olives and saffron and chiles is in order. It always satisfies, and I've been snacking on filet all weekend, so I could use a break from red meat.
                                                                                    Butter lettuce is around, should I want a salad, and I have some beets to use up too. Got to think about cleaning up for company for the big day, and this includes the fridge.
                                                                                    Oh, and dinner will be made in and around a candy making marathon of nougat, panforte, almond dragees, pate de fruit and candied peel. Tis the season!

                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: rabaja

                                                                                      rabaja, as soon as I saw, "another rainy grey day in Sonoma", I knew it was you. Your day and your meals sound fantastic. Preserved lemons, mmmmm. With olives, even better. Double mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. Howevah! I would like to know more about those almond dragees - I know dragees only as baking decors, but something truly pretty and edible sounds marvelous. Feel up to sharing?

                                                                                      1. re: mamachef

                                                                                        Any excuse to step away from my work Mama. Basically you take lightly toasted almonds and cook them in a sugar syrup until the syrup thickens and caramelizes. Then you continue cooking, and stirring, and stirring, until the sugar crystalizes.
                                                                                        At this point, you just keep on stirring, adjusting the heat up or down so you don't burn anything, but you need your fire hot enough to remelt the crystalized sugar. In the end, the sugar forms a shiny shell around each almond. Hazelnuts work well too.
                                                                                        Then, you pour them out onto a silpat and spread them best you can. Once cool, break up any that are stuck together. Temper some chocolate, I'm using a Valrhona 66%. Toss the nuts first into chocolate and then into cocoa. This is a messy process. You want the nuts coated, but not all stuck together. And the chocolate needs to firm up before you can remove the nuts from the cocoa, so yeah, it's tedious for sure.
                                                                                        Sometimes we flavor the syrup with cinnamon or a nice chile or paprika, but this time I just threw in a bit of vanilla bean pulp and some sea salt.
                                                                                        Guess I'd better get back inthe kitchen.

                                                                                         
                                                                                        1. re: rabaja

                                                                                          What some people consider tedious is my true Zen nature. I am SO making these. I don't know how far they'll make it out of the house, but so what? Whoa. Glass Almonds.

                                                                                    2. Yesterday was my cook-ahead day for a change. I made a huge pot of chili, but didn't eat it. I let it simmer all day and refrigerated and just now put it on to warm back up. That way I could finish all my shopping today without worrying about WFD! I also made a bunch of drop biscuits last night and will heat some of those up as well with some honey-butter. Add a little chopped onion and shredded cheese, maybe a dollop of sour cream and it's dinner! How easy is that?!

                                                                                      1. today i made one of my fav pasta dishes. Pasta (today i used shells but i prefer tagliatelle) with creme fraiche, chevre and honey. (added some walnuts and mushrooms as well). soo good! i could eat the sauce on its own, with a spoon.. lol

                                                                                        1. Breakfast for dinner night: Buttermilk pancakes with a sprinkling of toasted walnuts; scrambled eggs, crispy bacon and the leftover fried potatoes from a couple days ago.

                                                                                          1. Lancashire Hotpot is one of the iconic dishes of north west England - and one we actually rarely cook. But Mrs H has decried that it'll be just the thing for someone with man flu. And she's cooking it. As with most iconic dishes, there are as many recipes as there are cooks. This is what we do.

                                                                                            We've got lamb chops. Now, these arent the lamb chops that make up a refined rack of lamb or the refined little cutlets you get in France. Oh no. These are neck chops - fatty and only suitable for very long casserole cooking.

                                                                                            Chops go into a casserole dish. We brown them first. My mother didnt. Now I'm not sure if her way was more traditional or if it was just she wasnt avery good cook (she wasnt, by the way). Traditonally, you'd add kidney at this time but we havnt got any. Some roughly chopped onions definitely get a softening before going into the pot. And then it's on to the liquid and flavouring - water, a shake or two of Worcestershire sauce, some thyme, salt, pepper - certainly nothing "fancy". You then add a topping of sliced potato. And stick it in the oven for a couple of hours or more. It'll be served with pickled beetroot, or pickled red cabbage (from a jar) which helps to cut through the fattiness.

                                                                                            Just the sort of food you'd want after a 12 hour shift at the mill. If we were religious, we might even say the Lancashire grace - "Bless o' on us Lord wi' this gradely stuff. An' nudge me when ah've 'ad enough"

                                                                                            6 Replies
                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                              That was a "specialty" of my old Morecambe-born boss (hers was unbrowned and rather dispiriting). Yours sounds good and just the ticket for what ails you.
                                                                                              Their family saying upon finishing a meal was "I've had an excellent sufficiency, any more would be a superfluorocy".

                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                Funny you should mention the "excellent sufficiency" remark. It's something herself says, quoting her granny.

                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                  It came from old Mrs Rhodes, the proprietress of the family chippie in Bradford. She would be about herself's granny's vintage. It has a music hall comedian thing to it, don't you think?
                                                                                                  Another gem, on being passed bread in a restaurant: "No thanks, I can get bread at 'oome!"

                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                    Yep. Certainly has a ring to it of being a comedian's catchphrase. Google also turns up the phrase in the US south - also seemingly an "old" expression.

                                                                                                    And, I'm reminded of a comedy series here in the late 1990s starring four asian actors.One of the sketches always portrayed a mother who woulkd decry things in restaurants an so as wasteful "I can make it at home for nothing".

                                                                                              2. re: Harters

                                                                                                I've been meaning to make a hotpot ever since I found a local butcher who regularly stocks kidneys, though I was under the impression the topping is pastry, not potato.

                                                                                                Dinner for me will be simple. I saved the broth from poaching breasts for salad the other day and reheated it with ginger, garlic, scallion and a bit of celery. Next step is to season a bit with soy sauce, white pepper and sesame oil and stir in a beaten egg and voila: egg drop soup. The leftover cilantro and mint may make for a salad with the red onions and lemons. Any fruit leftover will go towards making lemonade to wash it all down. Dessert will be a bit of fourme d'ambert.

                                                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                  Topping is always tradtionally potato - you have several layers, so the top ones crisp up in the oven and the lower ones stay soft.

                                                                                              3. Well, I'm totally in a funk today. Sunday I made (what DH called) the best pot of chili I have ever made, for a day ahead meal. Yesterday, I warmed it up for dinner. It was really great - he said just the right proportions of onion, peppers, spices, etc. But, it was too hot to put into the fridge directly after dinner. A short time later, I went to sleep early, DH cleaned up the kitchen and started the dishwasher (poor DH had a long day too, though). I got up this morning and the chili is still sitting in it's pot on the counter! He forgot to put it away when he was done and is kicking himself in the you-know-what. Now, I'm afraid I'll have to toss it. It is in the refrigerator at the moment, but I just look at that pot with longing.

                                                                                                Ok - on to today. I'm making some refreshing butternut squash soup. I don't want to leave too much in the fridge since we will be either at our children's house or the beach for the holidays. And this soup never lasts past maybe one leftover meal. Plus I'm putting together the "goodie" box to take to the "kids".

                                                                                                11 Replies
                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma

                                                                                                  Augh, Boma, I feel your pain. Mr. left an entire pot of chicken stock out after doing a brilliant job on the rest of the kitchen.
                                                                                                  What'cha putting in the goodybox? Your kids are so lucky.......
                                                                                                  Tonight, Taco Tuesday!! The young men have an enormous pot of slow-cooked chile beef, and another of beans. I'll step in this afternoon and make some rice and a salad, and leave instructions about the steaming of the tortillas. Nothing vege. or vegan; they'll have to utilize their meal-ticket option this week, cause it's about one choice, one choice only.

                                                                                                  1. re: mamachef

                                                                                                    Goodie box = First of all, I have to put in all the stuff for stuffing (I'm taking a 21 lb. bird, and need all the "stuff" for the stuffing - toasting bread cubes, spices, turkey stock which I made last month - most of which will go in at the last minute). Cookies for the boys (Oatmeal, Sugar Cookies (using my mama's old screw press), chocolate chip and peanut butter). Fudge for the "bigger" kids and some yum yum balls. Bad on the diet - but oh well, it's the holidays!

                                                                                                  2. re: boyzoma

                                                                                                    BZ, i know people will argue with me, but i would never have thrown out your chili! chicken stock, ala mamachef's story, yes, but cooked beef? no way. anyway, i know i'm in the minority, but i feel bad at the waste at your lovely meal/work! someone should invent something, some type of alarm you stick in the chili when it's cooled down enough to put it in the fridge.... sorry about your chili, hon!

                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                      I'm with you mariacarmen- we live in New England though and the house cools down at night.

                                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                        Me neither, I would have just boiled it up for 10 mins or so and refrigerated it. But I come from a family that left cooked turkeys out of the fridge overnight.

                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                          I wouldn't have thrown it (or the chicken stock) away. I've always operated--perhaps stupidly but w/no ill effects so far--on the notion that heating it up for a bit would kill whatever might have moved in overnight. I think about how food is stored in other places, how we left things out for long periods when I was growing up (often trying to keep it "warm")--sometimes we take being careful pretty far.

                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                            Well, I have not thrown it out yet. It is sitting in the fridge and was waiting for garbage day which comes tomorrow - But - Maybe I'll just vacuum seal it and we can "test" it out after the holidays. You're right, we let the house cool down at night, so think I'll give it a shot. Thanks everyone for the words encouragement.

                                                                                                            1. re: boyzoma

                                                                                                              I'd boil it up well first and rechill it before vacuumpacking it, myself.

                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                Thanks, BT - that sounds like a plan. I just can't stand to toss it if not necessary. I'll do just that. Heat it up now really good, then let it cool so I can seal it up tomorrow.

                                                                                                                1. re: boyzoma

                                                                                                                  And heat it up very thoroughly before eating it. Humans wouldn't still be on the planet if all food had to be refrigerated at all times. I've lived places where nothing much was under refrigeration even in summer with no ill effects.

                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                    I'll make special notations on the packages in the freezer on the reheating. I really appreciate the support and will take all necessary precautions. Happy Holidays!!!

                                                                                                        2. Dinner tonight was "simples": leftover shrimp & sausage gumbo, wheat crackers, extra sharp cheddar, apples....

                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: Cherylptw

                                                                                                            My dinner last night was "simples" as well - leftover basmati rice, steamed broccoli and green beans. Cleaning out the fridge, as I didn't get home until later than usual. I had gone out for lunch and had pasta with chicken and asparagus in an alfredo sauce, so I didn't really want much more.

                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                              I'm cleaning out the fridge also; it's amazing what you find in there when you do. I can actually open it without stuff falling out ...lol!...

                                                                                                          2. I had a mess of leftover roasted butternut squash from the other night, so we're having soup - I browned some homemade breakfast sausage, then pulled that from the pan and sauteed a couple of shallots in the fat, then added the squash and some pumpkin pie spice, a little cayenne, then a jar of chicken stock. Hit it with the stick blender, then added the sausage back in. Should be good with some fresh bread.

                                                                                                            1. Upcoming ......Gammon steak. Richard Woodall's - he supplies our Queen with Cumberland hams and bacon, you know. So we're in illustrous company there. But I bet Lizzie Windsor won't be having hers with potato cakes, a fried egg and tinned sweetcorn.

                                                                                                              bd then it's settling down with a really good night of foody TV:

                                                                                                              Nigel Slater's Simple Suppers
                                                                                                              Supermarkets - What price cheap food?
                                                                                                              Nigella's Kitchen - Xmas special
                                                                                                              Christmas with Gordon (the Big Swearie, that is)

                                                                                                              Oh, and a repeat of "Victoria Wood with all the trimmings". Which isnt a food prgramme but was one of the funniest things I'd seen in ages. Should still raise a chuckle second time around - even with someone with man flu.

                                                                                                              And then it's an early trip to the supermarket tomorrow to collect the Xmas turkey. Even though it's pre-ordered, they said if you're early, you're likely to get a bigger one. Free range, rare breed Bronze, by the way.

                                                                                                              1. Tonight will be cleaning out the refrigerator night. Have a little butternut squash from last night, as well as some meatloaf, mashed potatoes, gravy and glazed carrots. Good tidings.

                                                                                                                1. Lots of cooking and baking around here lately, but not always what qualifies as "dinner." I have been dining vicariously reading WFD. *Real* dinners have mostly been out (or had around buffet tables or off party trays). Oh, the waistline . . .

                                                                                                                  We did score some beautiful salty oysters that didn't break the bank (not as cheap as in pre-spill days, but definitely worth what we paid) a couple days ago, so Monday we had "upscale" po-boys: fried oysters, sriracha-spiked mayo, and arugula on ciabatta. Last night, with some visiting family sitting around the table, we had oysters and shrimp "Mosca-style" (baked with heavily seasoned breadcrumbs and herbs) and angel hair pasta, spinach and arugula salad, roasted brussels sprouts. All manner of baked sweets for dessert.

                                                                                                                  Out tonight and tomorrow, to sister's for Christmas Eve, so I won't be cooking dinner again until Christmas, but still haven't settled on the menu though I've been studying the boards for inspiration. I guess I'd better get with it.

                                                                                                                  1. Beef stew and baking powder biscuits here tonight. Oh, and a green salad because we need some vegetation. :)

                                                                                                                    1. I had some bolognese I needed using so I tossed that with whole wheat rotini, ricotta and mozzarella then baked in the oven. To go with, green beans slowly cooked in a little bacon fat and garlic bread. By the way, if anyone ever wondered if ricotta can be frozen then thawed and used, I'm here to tell you it works. I will say that so far, I've only tried it in tonight's dish but next time I have some I can't use before it goes bad, I'll freeze, thaw and use it in a cheesecake as an experiment.

                                                                                                                      1. DH and I are hosting my dad and brother for Christmas dinner tonight before heading out of town this weekend. We'll start with crudite (carrot and celery sticks, radishes) w/ spicy honey mustard, ranch, and kosher salt for dipping. Maybe crack open a few beers. Then we'll sit down to mixed greens with toasted almonds and dried cranberries tossed with homemade fig vinaigrette. The main will be herb-rubbed NY Strip roast served with buttermilk mashed potato souffle, steamed broccoli with lemon zest and nutmeg, scampi-style roasted mushrooms, cranberry-clementine-walnut sauce, and corn pudding. Aunt Peg's brioche-style rolls alongside.

                                                                                                                        To drink: Gruet sparkling wine, framboise lambic for those who don't like wine, and a pinot noir I bought back when I thought we were roasting pork.

                                                                                                                        Dessert will be chocolate pear cake (http://smittenkitchen.com/2009/01/bit...) with a dollop of golden rum-spiked whipped cream. Coffee, if anyone still has room.

                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                          Sounds like a superb pre-Christmas dinner with your family, Christina!

                                                                                                                          I'm working through freezer contents, so tonight will be spaghetti and meat sauce. A small salad alongside, and it's an easy fix dinner. Gives me time before Top Chef All-Stars to digest before the excitement. :-)

                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                            That sounds fabulous, Christina. Hope you all have a great time.

                                                                                                                            1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                              Thanks! I wasn't too thrilled with the pear cake, and the mashed potatoes were just OK, but overall, it was a nice meal and night.

                                                                                                                              1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                Had you made that cake before? Or am I confusing it w/another pear cake that you really loved?

                                                                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                  I hadn't. My usual recipe is based on Ina Garten's Plum Cake Tatin. This one seemed like a good way to bridge the gap between fruit and chocolate dessert lovers, but I wasn't blown away by the combination.

                                                                                                                            2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                              Wow, Christina! Sounds great! (looks good, too, on fb)

                                                                                                                            3. A wee bit tired. We'd not yet done our holiday shopping, and needed to get it all done today. Yes, that's right, we did all of our shopping in one day. I am slightly resentful of anyone who requested anything that could only be found in a mall. It was hideous. The parking alone was an hour's time.

                                                                                                                              Tonight, I am making hash browns and fried eggs . . . with HP SAUCE. I have been talked out of HP sauce for many years by the man who is sacked out on the couch watching some movie that was filmed in Russia. The holiday stress, I think, made me a bit assertive. I bought the damned sauce, even though I know it is likely the US version that is spoiled by HFCS, and lacking in what would make the HP purists cry foul. But if I even remotely like it, then I will know to seek out the likely suspects for an export of the goods. Which I couldn't do this week, because I was too damned busy, and only had time for the big box, because that's where the cat food is.

                                                                                                                              This is a long post for potatoes and eggs, but I am excited to try the sauce. I do think I am a brown sauce kind of girl.

                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                              1. re: onceadaylily

                                                                                                                                how was the HP Sauce, OADL? and truly, no post is too long for potatoes and eggs.

                                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                  I really liked it. It was just slightly fruity, but the vinegar gave it a nice kick. I can see it working well with an egg and rice dish.

                                                                                                                              2. Tonight it was pork chops with a mustard sauce. I had to improvise the cooking time because I'm at my mother's without my thermometer (also they were thinner than I usually get) but they came out nice and tender. Bread to mop up the sauce with. With that, salad with my favorite dressing: olive oil, a few drops of lemon juice, salt and pepper. Fruit for desert.

                                                                                                                                1. So, we were at the supermarket early, shopped and were back home by 9. That's the festives sorted. The house is groaning under the weight of food and we seem to have no need to shop again until February.

                                                                                                                                  So, we're declaring the festives well and truly open. It is time for Father Christmas and the Lords of Misrule to take centre stage. LET THE FEASTING COMMENCE.

                                                                                                                                  There will be country pate that I made a couple of weeks back and froze in slices. With bread, cornichons, and a pineapple chutney (made in the region by a small Sri Lankan owned company)

                                                                                                                                  There will be fish pie with whiting, salmon, prawns and a few king prawns. When I say "pie", actually it's a bit of misnomer. We cook the seafood in a pan, with a Mediterranean-ish tomato/white wine sauce. And separately bake some rounds of puff pastry which just top the "stew" on the plate.

                                                                                                                                  There'll be a little cheese.

                                                                                                                                  And there'll be wimberry fool for dessert.

                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                    Let the eating begin. :-) Enjoy, Harters!

                                                                                                                                      1. Another day of non-cooking for me. Having a holiday lunch with friends, at which i presume and devoutly pray copious amounts of wine shall be quaffed. Then coming home to a boyfriend concoction.

                                                                                                                                        Tomorrow, however, i shall prepare "something" in the kitchen. We will have our xmas eve dinner, albeit much abbreviated - father didn't want me to go overboard this year - since after all we are not truly in any holiday spirit - but i didn't want the day to pass completely unnoticed since it's a day my mom loved, just for the fact of having us both home. So, a honey baked ham is in the fridge, I'll be making biscuits - a first for me, and i read a post elsewhere of operagirl's kale and apple saute that I'm going to try. with that will be a smattering of nibbles - dilled rye bread, olives, pickles (japanese kind, too), cheese, pate, and potato chips - the latter to go with the marathon of AbFab videos (yes, videos, not dvds) my sister and i will indulge in - another former delight of my mom's. oh and tho not in a particularly festive mood, there is a nice bubbly rose chilling. i think that should take care of us nicely. and then next day will be leftovers and maybe take my dad to a movie. happy cooking and feasting, everyone!!

                                                                                                                                        8 Replies
                                                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                          A nice remembrance. Thinking of you, dear mc!

                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                            It sounds like a lovely day, mariacarmen! A very merry Christmas to you and your Dad.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                              That sounds like a wonderful dinner, mc. Enjoy the day.

                                                                                                                                              And happy holidays, everyone!

                                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                Enjoy the holidays w/your family and the BF, MC--may the tasty bites, the bubbly, and your mom's spirit lift all of yours. We spent last night at the home of someone who very recently lost her mother--and she was regaling us with some of her (rather hilarious) holiday coping mechanisms, but as they didn't involve cooking, I won't go into them here. (Her partner did, however, serve up a fabulous (JC) Bouef Bourguignon and some lovely wines and champagne for dinner.)

                                                                                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                  nice. we will try to invoke the same spirit!

                                                                                                                                                2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                  maria what a lovely day you've planned. May your biscuits be fluffy and light and your day be filled with happy memories. Merry Christmas.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                    thanks BC! biscuits were good right out of the oven - used pork fat from a mexican grocer, so they were very porky and yummy. overstuffed, bloated now, going to bed and dreaming of a fat free xmas day - hah - fat chance! Hope yours is delicious and merry too.

                                                                                                                                                3. Got out of work early and put a bigass pork shoulder frozen harder than a rock in the oven. We eat late so it should be OK by the time we're ready for it. Not sure what to have with it, have an uncharacteristic for me yen for barbecue sauce...menu under development.
                                                                                                                                                  Tomorrow night scallops as a break between pork and goose. Fatty meats R us.

                                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                    Fatty meats R us.
                                                                                                                                                    ~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                                                                                                                    :-D :-D :-D That's what I felt like last week having had lamb every day for 6 days in a row!

                                                                                                                                                    And what is it about the day before going on vacation from work that all hellacious hell breaks loose? Holy smokies, today was NUTS! All the last minute year end stuff, with additional year end stuff thrown in for good measure. But I got a total of 3 bottles of wine from coworkers, and I got out of there at 5pm (even though I was aiming for 3pm). So vacation has officially started (although I'll have to go in for several hours late next week).

                                                                                                                                                    Tonight's dinner will be very simple - crispy pancetta tossed into scrambled eggs with some grated cheddar and a "side dish" of a toasted, buttered English muffin. Oh - and some of the wine I got from coworkers. :-)

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                      your dinner sounds so good! and good for you that your stressful day is over and you can enjoy your vacation with your newly gifted bottles of wine. enjoy Linda, the heart and soul of WFD AND the best top chef chronicler!

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                        Same here! and it's always the weirdest, most impossible things that are demanded of you those days. Glad it's over (and that Customs and the ports are closed today so nothing can be done anyway in my line of work).
                                                                                                                                                        The pork took a long time (a big piece, 6 1/2 hrs total, could have gone another two to be more tender but it was done to temp) but was awfully good - I skinned it and scored the fat, salt and peppered it and filled the scores with chopped garlic - re-covered it, cooked a couple hours, then jacked the heat up to 425 to crisp it and to bake some buttermilk biscuits. The squares of crisp fat somehow largely disappeared in the kitchen once the roast was done (meat candy). Served it with a slaw based on one I read about once in James Beard - I think in Delights and Prejudices, but have never been able find it again - shredded cabbage, lots of salt, pepper, thinly sliced red oinion, a 1/4 tsp of turmeric (to 1/2 good-sized cabbage), in sharp red wine vinaigrette (2:1 vinegar to oo). Added a thinly-sliced Serrano for zip (not in the Beard conception). Perked that pork right up. A sip of Armagnac in bed later to settle the tum. Hey Santa, we're ready!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                          Fatty meats R us - love it. enjoy it all!

                                                                                                                                                        2. I made 2 big trays of baked penne to bring in to share with coworkers at the restaurant tonight. Homemade sauce with sweet and hot Italian sausage, fennel, green pepper, onion, shallot, crushed fennel seed, basil, oregano...the usual suspects. Tossed with cubes of mozzarella and topped with grated mozz and parm. Hope it's good!

                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                            . . . these are a few of my favourite things!! How could it be anything less than delicious CM, sounds scrumptious. Italian comfort food!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                              Oh, Christina, I cannot believe it was NOT good! I love adding sweet and hot sausage to homemade sauce. I always go with red bell peppers vs. green, as the green and I don't seem to get along, but otherwise, your sauce sounds wonderful! I like the idea of cubes of mozz tossed with the baking pasta to make it extra cheesy in the middle. :-)

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                It was tasty! Too bad the head cook had the same idea to cook everyone dinner. In addition to penne, we had a full dinner of grilled sirloin steak, arugula and shrimp salad with corn, fried yucca, grilled asparagus, and pan-roasted sprouts.

                                                                                                                                                                Fried plantains for dessert, along with the last of the pear-chocolate cake, which I brought from home.

                                                                                                                                                                Penne was good!

                                                                                                                                                            2. Tonight we get our fill of Sichuan food at the local haunt, but....

                                                                                                                                                              I'm in full swing of preps for tomorrow - the rotkohl along with a Macintosh apple and a grated onion has been braising away in a combo of bacon and goose fat (some of those icky yellow globs I pulled out of the goose), red wine vinegar, brown sugar, salt & cloves; tomorrow, it'll be reheated cause that's how we Germans roll.

                                                                                                                                                              The goose has been scored - sorta, with some of the disgusting lipo taken care of, too; it then took a nice hot bath and is now drying out in the garage, to be put in the fridge later on. I am still nervous about how it'll come out tomorrow, but hoping for the best.

                                                                                                                                                              Side will be simple smashed baby potatoes tossed with olive oil, Maldon flakes & fresh parsley.

                                                                                                                                                              Dessert will be love, wine, and who knows what else '-D

                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                qu'est-ce que "rotkohl"???? whatever it is, it sounds like it will be delish.

                                                                                                                                                              2. Fried flounder tonight with cole slaw, corn, baked potato and leftover green beans.

                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                1. I finally finished the cheescake baking fiasco that has been my life this last week. Started to make ahead some of the sides for tomorrows big dinner (Christmas dinner is a much quieter affair at our house). Sat down this afternoon completely exhausted with no plan for dinner. Then the door bell rang and it was the daughters of friends that own a large sheep ranch 110 miles from here. They came bearing a roasting pan full of wonderfully marinated (lots of garlic) lamb chops. So that was what was for dinner! SOOO good! I love my friends and neighbors!

                                                                                                                                                                  1. So, the man flu was no better and I thought I better get myself off to the doctor. Seemingly no-one likes to get sick on Christmas Eve so I formed a queue of just one waiting to see him. Chest infection diagnosed and course of antibiotics prescribed. This is about the only benefit of getting old - now I'm 60, prescriptions are free. Yippeee - sort of.

                                                                                                                                                                    We're going to spend the afternoon prepping for the family lunch tomorrow before cooking tonight';s dinner. Well, when I say "cooking", there's not much to do. We're starting with potted shrimps (bought, of course). Then a simple beef and chestnut casserole. Baked potato; steamed cabbage. And finishing with an orange jelly - basically a Nigel Slater recipe which I made last night. Half a litre of orange juice was warmed through, along with the juice of a lemon. No, I didnt freshly squeeze but bought premium fresh from the supermarket. A few leaves of gelatine were softened and then mixed in and the juice poured into 4 of the "best" wineglasses. As it started to set, I added a couple of segments of satsuma to each glass - would have been better to have been orange (but that got crossed off the shopping list without being put in the trolley - I blame the one holding the list and calling out items to be placed!).

                                                                                                                                                                    No dinner as such tomorrow as the main meal is lunchtime, so I'll probably be back on the thread on Boxing Day. Till then, best wishes for the season - however you may celebrate it. And my very sincere thanks for letting me share my dinners with you over the year.

                                                                                                                                                                    From a chilly North Cheshire.

                                                                                                                                                                    John

                                                                                                                                                                    7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                      Hope the antibiotics--and all the vitamin C in that orange jelly--do the job, Harters, and you and Mrs. H are able to enjoy fully all your holiday treats.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                        That orange jelly sounds great. Beef and chestnut casserole? Elaborate please!
                                                                                                                                                                        No worries re when the main meal is taken, lunch used to be called dinner where I come from, and Christmas main meal time is flexible in the US too.
                                                                                                                                                                        And best holiday wishes to all!!!

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                          Fruit and wine jellies often crop up Slater's books. Well worth considering as a light zingy dessert after something heavy. And it brings out the kid in me.

                                                                                                                                                                          As for the casserole, no real recipe here. As we speak, herself is browning shin beef, cut in large chunks. They'll go in the casserole with a little flavouring - a couple of sticks of celery, onion, bay leaf, fresh thyme - and beef stock (concentrate from a bottle) and enough water to cover. Into the oven for, erm, let's say, getting on for 2.5 hours. Then a vacuum pack of cooked chestnuts will get stirred in just to warm through.

                                                                                                                                                                          To quote the UK's biggest star of 2010. "Simples".
                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.comparethemeerkat.com/home

                                                                                                                                                                          As for me, I'm sat at the table peeling and prepping what seem to be bloody mountains of the vile tasting farty things that are essential for the Brit Xmas lunch.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                            OK, that website is HYSTERICAL, Harters! What a great marketing tool for the actual website. :::vbg::: The television commercials must be great!

                                                                                                                                                                            Simples! Now I know where you got it from. ;-) And you do realize you've sent it across the pond to those of us in the States.

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                              I'll give that a whirl. Chestnut anything is a big hit in our house.
                                                                                                                                                                              Brussels sprouts free zone chez nous, I have never owned one. Nor wanted to. plenty of nice cabbage relatives to enjoy, i'll leave that one to those who enjoy it. (Traumatized at an early age by sprouts boiled to their last gasp - if the meat fork goes in easily, they're done...)

                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                              The lunch/dinner thing still crops up here. Use dto be very much the main meal served in the middle of the day was dinner and a more snacky evening meal was "tea". Pretty much most folk will think of the daytime meal as "lunch" - but the name of evening meal can depend on your geographical location and/or social class - with dinner, supper or tea prevailing. If you're southern and posh, you may have supper. Scottish working class folk have "tea".

                                                                                                                                                                              That said, a number of lunchtime meals are always dinner. Christmas dinner. A traditional Sunday roast is always a Sunday dinner. And kids have "school dinners" at their school.

                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                              Harters, I'm glad you went to the doctor and got it diagnosed and have your meds! Hope they kick in right quickly and you're feeling up to par tomorrow for the holiday feast! It's been a pleasure getting to know you this past year on these threads. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                            4. Haven't been cooking (or eating) much lately. After coming home to the family, I got sick with a lovely cold. But, now that Christmas is upon is, it is time to buckle down and bake. Today will likely be Chocolate krinkles, as well as some chocolate chip. Good stuff! Tonight will be church followed by a family snack night. Just the parents, brother, sister, myself, and any significant others, with enough food to stuff a moose. Everything from chips and dips of sorts to cocktail dogs in sauce. Yum! Tomorrow will be Christmas brunch at grandmother #1's, with lots of presents and uncertain food at this point. Grandma bought quiche and coffecake, but mom and I think that we may need to supplement that, as it is more lunch than brunch for everyone...
                                                                                                                                                                              Then, we will be off to grandma #2's for a big ham dinner with all the fixin's. Gonna be a delicious day, filled with lots of family and fun :)

                                                                                                                                                                              Hopefully all the chow's have a lovely holiday, whatever it is you might be celebrating and wherever it is you might be celebrating, and lots of good food along with that. :)

                                                                                                                                                                              1. Up to my arms in caramel corn for all the kids (great and small) in my life, but I have settled on tomorrow's menu. Had to, as DH was in a more rebellious than holiday spirit and threatened not to go to the grocery store AT ALL if I didn't get my *final* list finalized by 9 am sharp. Yes Sir! I said.

                                                                                                                                                                                So tomorrow's "dinner" (served around 3 p.m.) will be: Standing rib roast (rubbed w/garlic and herbs); horseradish sauce; (Julia Child's) Potatoes Dauphinoise; Roasted Brussels Sprouts (w/apples and nuts and lashed w/creme fraiche); a corn dish my sister has requested--(alas, frozen) corn with shallots, chanterelles, parmesan; Spinach and arugula salad w/satsuma sections, dried cranberries, blue cheese, and toasted pecans.
                                                                                                                                                                                We'll have our usual holiday appetizer--baby crabcakes w/dollops of flavored aioli and mimosas. Dessert will be pies--chocolate mousse tart w/lots of whipped cream as per Baby Brother (I first made this when he was 11 and he has asked for it every year since); lemon pecan pie (per Mom's request); lemon buttermilk pie (non-negotiable).
                                                                                                                                                                                I sooo wanted to cook a goose this year, but when I ran that up the flagpole, I almost got tied to it. [Loud sigh.]

                                                                                                                                                                                To all you Hounds, who care a lot what's for dinner, whether yours or ours: may you enjoy your goose, duck, turkey, beef, pork, lamb, fish, seitan, dressings, stuffings, sauces, gravies, gumbos, curries, soups, souffles, relishes, veggies, rolls, pies, puddings, and plenty of good spirit(s). Have a happy, safe, and tasty holiday.

                                                                                                                                                                                8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                  That is a superb holiday feast, ncw! Glad you finalized your menu so Himself did the shopping. :-) Enjoy, enjoy! I went out for a few things and the market was insane already at 9:30. But I needed the few things I got, plus I needed more ice melt in anticipation of a larger snow storm coming in on Sunday night.

                                                                                                                                                                                  It'll just be Mom and me tomorrow, and I'll go up to her apt. to cook it. Beef tenderloin with cognac cream sauce, baked potatoes with sour cream and chives, steamed green beans with toasted almonds, and glazed carrots. She bought dessert, but won't tell me what it is. I'm thinking it's something with key lime, as she knows that's my favorite. I love my Mom. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                  Tonight's dinner will be Roasted Corn and Red Pepper Chowder to which I add sliced up chicken. I'll make a big batch, as part of it will be packaged in small containers as part of Mom's Christmas gifts - various meals that I make and freeze for her so she has some variation in her dinners that she wouldn't normally make.

                                                                                                                                                                                  Some garlic bread and a small salad alongside, and it'll be a nice, light dinner tonight.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                    That's really thoughtful, Linda - making your mother the meal batches. I'm sure anyone would appreciate that.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                      Sounds delicious Linda, and I bet your mom loves you quite a bit too :)

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                        What a wonderful gift for your mom, LW. Both tonight's dinner and tomorrow's sound wonderful. And I love how you're spoiling each other with food.
                                                                                                                                                                                        I started to get a beef tenderloin for our Christmas dinner (once my goose was nixed), but at 27.99 (!)/lb and 8 people, I decided against it. Hearing about yours w/that cognac sauce is kinda making me wish I'd taken the plunge.
                                                                                                                                                                                        Happy holidays--and enjoy those wine gifts.

                                                                                                                                                                                        (After coming back in a state from the apprently very mobbed, very stupidmarket, DH just got sent off to the wine store. He gave me a dirty look, but he went, muttering that he might drink a bottle while he's there : )

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                          OMG, that price on the tenderloin is way crazy! I spend $20.00 less per pound for a 6 lb. tenderloin at BJ's Wholesale Club. It might not be prime beef, but it's always been good in the past. I'll cut it in half or thirds and only cook a portion of it for Mom and me.

                                                                                                                                                                                          And Mom's gift is something I did for her last year as well. I give her a choice of various dishes that I know freeze well - beef stew or beef burgundy, homemade meat sauce, chicken-broccoli turnovers, lamb-barley stew, macaroni & ham and cheese, pork stew, etc. and portion them into small foil containers if they need oven reheating, or Tupperware. She then washes the Tupperware and returns them for refilling. :-) My sister and BIL have also enjoyed some of this as well, as I made them chili and beef stew and the soup I'm making tonight for their cabin in Maine. They love knowing that they can get up there at 8-9pm, and have an easy defrost/reheat of soup or stew for dinner that's ready pretty quickly. When I gave Mom the coupon last year for Christmas, she looked at me and said "Oooh! I *like* that coupon - Mom, wanna trade?" and held out the CD I had just given her. Considering Mom doesn't like the Bodeans, she said no. :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                          And LOL on your husband being sent back out to the wine store. I had bought a few bottles just to have a few days ago, but the work gifts definitely upped my stash quantity. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                            How nice that you can do this for your mom. Dinner plan sounds great and the gift lovely.

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                          so nice Linda! your xmas dinner sound wonderful, and i'm sure your mom will be so happy to spend time with you and think of you while she eats those packaged meals you lovingly prepared for her. is that cognac cream sauce similar to the one you love at the tapas place?

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                            mc, this is definitely not the same as the one from Dali, as that is more fruity with the addition of prunes, figs, and apricots. This is the one I've posted earlier from Epicurious - it calls for tenderloin steaks, but I use the recipe for the sauce only as I roast a tenderloin roast.

                                                                                                                                                                                            http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                                                                                                                                            Mom very much looks forward to this, even when I ask her if she'd like something else for her Christmas dinner! :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Well, it wasn't last night but had a fun dinner with 3 of my girlfriends, including Chowhound DrewB123 on Tuesday for an Eat Pray Love movie & potluck night.

                                                                                                                                                                                        Italy:
                                                                                                                                                                                        Welcome cocktail - Amarina from Babbo with prosecco, sugar cube with bitters, limoncello. The pic is from a previous Batali dinner, but this time I made it with CH ArizonaGirl's homemade limoncello.
                                                                                                                                                                                        Calamari fritti
                                                                                                                                                                                        Pizza with prosciutto, sun-dried tomatoes and ricotta (my friend Colleen)
                                                                                                                                                                                        Homemade pasta all'Amatriciana

                                                                                                                                                                                        India:
                                                                                                                                                                                        Naan and raita (DrewB123)
                                                                                                                                                                                        Keema matar pulao fritters with spicy cilantro-pistachio chutney

                                                                                                                                                                                        Indonesia:
                                                                                                                                                                                        Satay with two dipping sauces - peanut and spicy soy-lime

                                                                                                                                                                                        Dessert: (a friend who is a pastry chef made the pasta and this delicious dessert)
                                                                                                                                                                                        Ricotta cake with tangerine zest, mascarpone cream, and pears poached in red wine.

                                                                                                                                                                                        What a feast, though of course I planned too much food. We could have stopped after Italy ; ) We decided we should do this more often. I think next time will be Big Night; I can't believe I still haven't seen it.

                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                        4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Rubee

                                                                                                                                                                                          Rubee, the 4 of you outdid yourselves! What an amazing spread!

                                                                                                                                                                                          And you *must* see Big Night - an amazing food movie! If you make the timpano, my hat's off to you! :-) Another movie you might like is Soul Food. Seriously amazingly groaning tables of food in that movie. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Rubee

                                                                                                                                                                                            Wow, what a great night. i love the inspiration for dinners being movies - why didn't i ever think of that? i'm going to suggest that to my friends. I didn't love Eat Love Pray, but yes, you MUST see Big Night - wonderful and funny and hunger-making. even the last scene (won't spoil it) made me hungry - my mom too - and it was so simple. my dad didn't get it. anyway, see it!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Rubee

                                                                                                                                                                                              Mmm, what an amazing spread! I wish that was on my table right now!!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Well, it went rather well, I thought.

                                                                                                                                                                                                There were canapes - homemade mushroom mini-quiche; mini steak sandwiches (and, yes, I made the bread myself); smoked salmon blinis.

                                                                                                                                                                                                There was "cup-a-soup" (something that has some resonance with herself's family) - butternut squash soup served in expresso cups, with a couple of of homemade anchovy/olive biscuits on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                There was the inevitable turkey, carrots, sprouts with chopped hazelnuts, sausages, bacon rolls, bread sauce, sage& onion stuffing, chestnuit stuffing, gravy. The only disappointment here was the gravy - I'd made stock a couple of weeks ago and froze it, but it was pale and unappetising. Didnt stop others sloshing it all over their plate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                There was cheese. From the next county - Shorrocks Lancashire - their "bomb" http://www.gourmetbritain.com/encyclo.... From our own county - Bourne's Cheshire. Mrs Bourne was apologetic that it wasnt as mature as should be but they had to replace much of their herd after it caught TB. They just havnt had time to fully mature the cheese. Both were lovely. We had them with grapes, pecans, and a "gooseberry cheese" (like the Spanish membrillo sp?

                                                                                                                                                                                                )

                                                                                                                                                                                                And then there was Christmas pudding, with brandy sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, and coffee and chocolate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Harters, it sounds absolutely lovely! I'm about to head out to my Mom's to cook our much smaller, but just as anticipated, feast! A very happy Christmas to you and yours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Have a great day, Linda.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    'Twas indeed a rather good feast. And the antibiotics must have started to kick in a bit as I didnt spend the whole meal coughing,

                                                                                                                                                                                                    On to the leftovers.............

                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Well, I finally decided ti try the turducken after all and bought one prepared. Anyway as folks arrive, light apps, shrimp, veggies and hummus, bubbly and a huge variety of beers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  with the turducken we've got green beans and shallots, baked smashed sweet potaotes, creamed corn and a fresah cranberry-orange relish. Then DW has made apple and mince pies for dessert.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Merry Christmas from all of us here at our little farm:

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Wow. I must have woken up starving because finally had time to read through the whole thread and it all sounds wonderful! Now I want roxlet's fried chicken, tzurriz's "cheater peroshkis", krisrishere's pernil, cherylptw's lamb meatballs, Maria Carmen's spatchcocked chicken with Peruvian fingerlings, sushigirlie's wok-seared chicken with mustard greens and spicy soy sauce...... and that's only the first part of the thread!

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Christmas Eve was a lovely relaxing night with the two of us. We enjoyed cocktails (bourbon with spiced cider syrup), a traditional dish in E's family - bacalao a la Vizcaina (salt cod with capers, peppers, tomatoes, and olives over puff pastry shells) paired with a beaujolais, and we finished with lemon meringue pie. Cozied up in front of the fireplace and watched "Another Thin Man" and the new "Wall Street".

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Christmas Day: E's family is notorious for last-minute, who-knows-when-they-will-get-here so I'm doing something easy that can be finished pretty easily and was a big hit last year with both adults and kids - Mexican! Cranberry margaritas to start, and then red chile tamales from a local Mexican bakery with Caesar salad, Mexican rice, and refritos. Though after reading Harters' feast, now I wish that was what I was having ; ) Merry Christmas all!

                                                                                                                                                                                                    Red chile tamales from La Purisima Mexican Bakery:

                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Rubee

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rubee, I would love to hear more about that bacalao a la Vizcaina -- sounds delish. What's the origin? And happy holidays to you, E and all who inspire me endlessly on this thread and across CH!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mebby

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks Mebby and Cheryl and Happy Holidays to you too!

                                                                                                                                                                                                        The dish is something E's mom and grandmother would make for holidays and festive occasions, buying the puff pastry shells from the local bakery. He loved it so much that when he moved to Boston, they would make batches of it, freeze, and ship to him : ) Unfortunately, I never got to try it before they both passed, so it's been a few years of trial and error for me to try to recreate it. Last year I finally got it, so now it's a tradition in our house too! It's quite easy:

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Bacalao

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 lb dried salt cod (soaked, changing water)
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 14-oz can of diced fire-roasted tomatoes with juice
                                                                                                                                                                                                        A quarter of a medium-sized onion minced
                                                                                                                                                                                                        ¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
                                                                                                                                                                                                        3 cloves of minced garlic
                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 bay leaves
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 oz of capers
                                                                                                                                                                                                        2 to 2-1/2 dozen green olives, halved
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 4-oz jar pimentos with juice

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Saute onion and garlic cloves in oil. Add tomatoes, chopped bacalao, pimentos, olives, capers, and bay leaves to the pan. Simmer for 20-30 minutes. Serve over puff pastry shells.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Bacalao a la Vizcaina, leftovers for lunch today, and Mexican Christmas Dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Rubee

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I adore Mexican food and those look fabulous! I made tamales last Christmas; I knew I should have made them again...now I want some...I might have to make them for New Years.....darn!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. Our big dinner is tomorrow, so I'm air-drying a 7 bone prime with stuffed artichokes (chopped shrimp, garlicky breadcrumbs; braised in a little wine; Yorkshire pudding with herbs, made individually, and horseradish cream, a great big winter salad and cranberry cheesecake on a choco. crust for the fam. Today it's just me and Mr., and we're heading off in an unusual direction: Home fried chicken, Sharp cheddar biscuits, mashed and gravy, cranberry compote and my own personal piece de resistance: a huge pot of slow-cooked green beans with bacon and onions that will sit on the stove all day. The house smells great, and since we can't eat like this very often, we decided to go big. Happy holidays, y'all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: mamachef

                                                                                                                                                                                                          mama, sounds wonderful. with your guidance, i made my first biscuits, and they turned out pretty ok. used a local mexican market's pork fat, so they were a tad porky, which is not a complaint, but they were absolutely best right out of the oven, and then reheated. i use FB, instructed by you, and froze the butter and fat as suggested by paulc on that thread i posted. added a little sharp aged cheddar, too. thanks for your help! this morning i worked on the perfect scrambled eggs, cooking them on the simmer burner for THIRTY TWO MINUTES. used celles sur belle butter, splashed a bit of heavy cream and milk, sea salt - DIVINE!
                                                                                                                                                                                                          this afternoon we'll be having leftover ham. Mama, enjoy your fabulous dinner, merry christmas to everyone here, and if that's not your thing, happy Saturday!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mamachef

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Your dinner today was just perfect; all of the things I love to eat, right down to the pot of green beans with bacon & onions.....ummm....mouth watering!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Christmas dinner included a venison tenderloin roast seared on the stove then finished in the oven with caramelized onion/red wine/beef stock sauce. To go with, pan roasted brussels sprouts with bacon (my first time making brussels sprouts, they were very good), braised kale, crispy oven roasted potatoes which were drizzled with olive oil, partially roasted then removed from oven to add chopped garlic & rosemary I've been saving from my cousin's garden...another drizzle of olive oil and they went back into the oven to finish....they were the best potatoes I've ever cooked (so far) and rolls.
                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dessert was toasted walnut & chocolate tart.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Cherylptw

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Man, does that sound good. We've been having trouble finding venison in NY - Whole Foods used to have it but hasn't the times we've checked, and one place wants FORTY DOLLARS a pound for it, ridic - some would be nice for New Year's dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Whaaaat?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                $40? A pound?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Heavens!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Even the prime fillet cuts, from a prime local supplier, are only going to be around £18 a pound here. Much cheaper in the supemarket (although not necessarly the quality)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  That price is insane! Truthfully, I've never seen venison in the stores in my area; everyone hunts and people give it away, which is how I always get mine.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Cherylptw

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Same here. I have never had to buy venison, elk, moose or caribou.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: chefathome

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We had that luxury when we lived in Potsdam, NY (near the Canadian border) - a friend's mom couldn't wait to get rid of what her husband bagged - and I grew up with a father who hunted, but hunters are a bit thin on the ground in New York City. Unfortunately.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        but hunters are a bit thin on the ground in New York City. Unfortunately.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        ~~~~~~~~~~~~
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        :-D Yeah, I'm thinking they kind of frown upon gun use in the Big City. Even though it happens, it's not *quite* the type of hunting most people were thinking of. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          <...hunters are a bit thin on the ground in New York City.>

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I can imagine! ;-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: mamachef

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Chicken dinner was very good, and prime rib will be wonderful tonight, but once again I'm gunning to make the hash with the potatoes and apples and fennel and maybe even some artichoke hearts if there are any left over. That is tomorrow's game plan; I believe last time I conceived this, Mr. took it upon himself to make something; maybe prime rib sandwiches? I keep enticing him with how great brunch will be, especially with horseradish cream fraiche and poached eggs and fresh grapefruit juice with champagne and strong coffee, but my real agenda is that I will personally see to wrapping and actually hiding the leftovers from him. If I have to use duct tape, I will; if I have to "hide" it in the crisper, I'll do that too. Possesive; yes. I.Want. That. Hash.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Christmas at ours - we were by ourselves (actually like that from time to time), had roast goose (turned out well, just a little fat under the skin that I cooked off in a frying pan to serve), cream of leek soup that a few chestnuts and the stems from watercress made delicious and a glorious green, Hasselback potatoes (a first, I read about them ages ago* in the Time-Life Scandinavian Cooking volume and always wanted to make them - you peel potatoes, slice them almost all the way through in 1/8 in slices, baste them with fat - I used goose fat, recipe called for butter - bake them 30 mins at 425, sprinkle them with some breadcrumbs and baste them again, then bake for about 15 mins, sprinkling them with Parmesan 5 mins before done), sugar snap peas with shallots, Danish red cabbage (previously made) applesauce, cranberry sauce (previously made), watercress salad, and Japanese cheesecake with sour cherries. I'm pooped!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  * So long ago that I asked my mother to make them and she said "too much work". She was a great cook but not a foofy one!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Absolutely. The edges get potato-chip-crisp and the main part all nice and soft. Delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      How were the Hasselbacks? They always get mentioned in Christmas recipe listings here, but I don't know anyone who has ever done them - as you say, sounds like a lot of work.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Very good, and really not a hassle (oops) to make, at least for 2 people (I only had 5 spuds in the house, not worth mashing). Try them, definitely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          i agree, i've made them, and they're not as much "hassel" as they sound. and they're delicious. my sister actually makes them really delicious - think she inserts slivers of butter between each slice. but your goosefat version sound divine, BT.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As mentioned they are simple. In addition to duck fat I place a slice of garlic and bay leaves in alternating slices.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. Everyone's holiday meals sound so delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Visiting family down South. Cooking in my mom's kitchen is akin to an Iron Chef competition, and I kind of get a kick out of seeing what I can come up with using a pantry that gets exotic with dried parsley and jarred minced garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Last night we roasted a 7-lb. turkey breast, which I basted with a sauce made from reduced OJ, maple syrup, red pepper flake, mustard, butter, garlic, and onion. I doctored up some Turkey Stove Top with sauteed onion, celery, and apples, tossed with beaten egg, and baked it off. On the side we had a nice crisp salad of romaine and spinach, tomatoes, carrots, toasted almonds, and homemade Catalina dressing. Also mashed potatoes made with cream cheese, homemade gravy, and canned green beans with onion and bacon (a classic in my family). Brown-and-serve Parker House rolls.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      For dessert: a gross pumpkin pie from the freezer, but everything else was so good, I didn't get bent out of shape.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I like your turkey baste. How do you make homemade Catalina dressing? I love that stuff.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Google "tomato soup dressing', add some celery seeds and mustard with the o&v and grated onion, and you'll never look back. This is also good mixed with mayo to create a bastard Louie dressing for seafood.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mamachef

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We made ours with white vinegar, honey, olive oil, and I believe ketchup, garlic, and onion powders. A DH "winging it." :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Upcoming.....the first of the festive leftover meals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There'll be a tin of pork rillettes as a starter. With toast. Now these arent leftovers, but we brought it back from France last spring and I'm fed up of it looking at me everytime I open the fridge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There will be turkey and stuffing (leftovers) . There'll be "little crispy" potatoes done in the oven (leftovers roasties, chopped and re-crisped). There'll be some roasted parsnips and strips of butternut squash, tossed in crushed coriander seeds, black pepper and chilli flakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There'll be cheese. In fact, cheese is going to figure heavily over the coming period, as there's a lot of cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        There'll be leftover Christmas pudding and brandy sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Then there'll be coffee, sofa & TV and too much chocolate. So that we end up going to bed feeling a teensy bit queasy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Like you, Harters, it's leftovers tonight. I have a good sized portion of the beef tenderloin, and some of the cognac sauce, and half of a baked potato. I left Mom with the rest of the sides, so I'll roast some brussels sprouts to go along with the tenderloin leftovers. Some Oreo Balls from a coworker should I want anything sweet for afters.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'll work off the last few days' meals with some expected shoveling from the impending blizzard - we're expecting 12-18" of snow. At least I have off from work next week (except a brief time doing some bill paying on Thursday) so I don't have to get up early to shovel tomorrow morning. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            a friend left us Oreo Balls in the fridge where we are fish-sitting for her - had never had them before, they are delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Harters, love the idea of your french rillettes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            last night took some Honey Baked ham, chopped it up, sauteed onion and apples with a little nutmeg, added some sliced kale, blended a couple of egg yolks with heavy cream and milk, tad more nutmeg, put the whole thing together with some sliced boiled buttery potatoes, grated aged sharp cheddar and stuck it in the oven for about 20 mins. Very custardy, sweet from the apples and HB ham, and smoky from the ham too. ooffa - i am still full this morning.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hold the rillette thought for a day or so, MC.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Steak, leftover from yesterday's canapes, has been discovered. Starter is now that, sliced and tossed through a chicory, spring onion and cherry tomato salad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm determined to eat those damn rillettes before we're back in France in April.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Once more into the breach, dear friends...it's a tough job but someone's got to do it (both eat the rillettes and go to France).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. We're completely snowed in here. We left our family in Connecticut at 11 PM Christmas night and got home at 9 AM. So far we have over a foot of snow in Norfolk and it's still coming down! We have absolutely no food in the house and the power keeps cutting off, so I'm keeping my gas stove on and simmering some tomato sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: krisrishere

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh stay warm, krisishere! I've been complaining all day about how cold it is here (esp. in my drafty old house), but I realize that this is nothing. Tomato sauce sounds like an excellent plan!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: krisrishere

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh NO, kris! Ugh on the extra-long drive home. I hope your power stays on - at least you have the gas stove to help. I'm all electric so it's never fun when the power goes out...usually in the summertime with brownouts because of power overuse. But I'd rather have the power go out in the summer heat than in the winter cold!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That storm has now reached New England; I'm not looking forward to the shoveling. Hopefully a local plow guy takes pity on me while I'm out shoveling. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I don't even own a shovel!! LOL What kind of (former) New England-er am I? :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: krisrishere

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I had to *sweep* the stairs out back today, just so that I could take out the trash. The two flights of stairs were one big snowdrift, and I could only vaguely make out where the risers were. It took a while; snow is heavier than it looks. I do not recommend this method, Krisrishere.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And I'll add this here, since it is hardly worthy of its own post. We're having leftover Chinese food for dinner. I'll fry a few eggs to add to the bowls of anyone who is hungry enough. Popcorn with cheese sprinkle after. We leave tomorrow evening to see our families for two days, so I'm trying to minimize what gets left in the fridge. And now I have to go buy wine, smoked cheeses, and the gift bag I forgot to get for my niece's big stuffed monkey. She just turned one, and is already crazy about monkeys. I think she may be a prodigy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: krisrishere

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                We're snowed in here also (Elizabeth City)...went to bed last night about 1:30 am (I supposed that's called morning :-) and went to let the dog out one last time...opened the door, snow blew in and she turned around on her way to the door with that look of "uh no, I'm not going out there". It was just a dusting then but this morning it was almost a foot; snowing all day too. I'm lucky my power hasn't gone out. We'll be having a heat wave before the weekend; they're predicting 60's by Thursday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I've been nibbling on Christmas cookies & candy all day so not too hungry; tonight I had a hot bowl of creamy NE clam chowder with crackers and a mug of vanilla hot chocolate. More cookies to follow later, I'm sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: krisrishere

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  sorry to hear that KIH! hope your sauce keeps you warm and fed until the storm ends, hopefully soon...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Jerk Ham with Apricot Rum Glaze
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Lemon Herb Risotto
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Maque Choux
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Buttermilk Panna Cotta

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Tonight it's definitely leftovers: 3/4 of the standing rib roast was still standing post-feast. I'll do something with the brussels sprouts I completely forgot about yesterday. (Unfortunately, nothing remains of what seemed like a giant dish of Potatoes Dauphinoise or the corn-chanterelle dish.) The meat was delicious, and it made great sandwiches for lunch, but I have a feeling I'm going to be tired of it--even though I sent a good bit of it home with both my mom and my sister. Maybe I'll slice it up and serve it for sandwiches for a football watching
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    gathering we're hosting tomorrow night. (What was I thinking?? Did I really need to pack another "event" into this week? On Wednesday, Baby Brother's girlfriend is flying in, so I'm cooking a Meet-the-Potential-SIL dinner, and two days later, we're having a smallish NYE party here. Oy. )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. Guests have gone home, kitchen is cleaned and floors are swept.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The fire has been roaring all day long and I am snacking on cheese and crackers with bubbly.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thinking about the leftover strata from breakfast, just not sure I can get my duff off the sofa to fetch it.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        It's been a long, glorious two days. Hosting Christmas was as much fun as I knew it would be, and I am pleasantly pooped and missing my house guests. Not bad at all.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hope the holiday was good for all of you you, stay safe and warm.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Looking forward to New Years eve and more house guests (and bubbly).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rabaja

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          good for you Rabaja, glad you enjoyed! Now come on, out with it: what did you make? or sorry, did i miss your menu earlier in the thread?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We had slow roasted prime rib (my Dad's specialty, how could I argue?). It was nice and rare, after 3 hours or so at 250F (he told me to do it at 200F, but I couldn't see how we'd ever eat before 9pm at that temp, so I boosted the oven up and noone was ever the wiser. Big arguement, ahem, discusssion, avoided).
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Along with we had roasted brussel sprouts with shallots, balsamic braised cipollinis and my Mom's yorkshire pudding. Horseradish sauce was sinus clearing, and the Chateauneuf du pape went very well.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dessert was sweet potato pie with Meyer lemon ice cream for those who wanted it. A tin of christmas cookies was passed around the next day, we were all too full to do much damage christmas night.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Everyone went to bed around 11pm, and I stayed up to put the kitchen back together and make my spinach-cheese strata for the morning. Very satisfying first big holiday at my house!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: rabaja

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sounds like a wonderful time, rabaja - glad it was an enjoyable and tasty dinner! (Meyer lemon ice cream sounds wonderful - homemade or store-bought?)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks Linda! The ice cream was homemade. I had to make a bunch of holiday desserts for a catering job last week, and this was a happy leftover. I have a container of mandarin sherbet leftover too. I'm pretty sure my bff will take care of both the ice cream and sherbet for me this weekend. Maybe I'll surprise her with a bombe.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rabaja

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh, what a GREAT idea, rabaja! It would be da bombe! ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: rabaja

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                that sounds fantastic Rabaja. i love yorkshire pudding, haven't made any in years.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Ce soir a Chez Harters - filet de boeuf a l'Avignonnaise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            An Elizabeth David recipe that comes to gether incredibly fast. Two frying pans are heated with butter. Into one goes a slice of bread each (we're using sourdough) and it gets crisped on both sides.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Inot the other go a couple of fillet steaks (we've nice ones about 3cm thick). These will have been rubbed with garlic and sprinkled with sea salt and black pepper. As soon as they're getting towards medium rare, a little more butter goes in and then a slosh of brandy which is ignited. As soon as the flames die down, steaks go on the croutons and away we go. Ms David says three minutes start to finish which is about right. Saute potatoes and green beans accompany.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            A few nibbles will precede and cheese will follow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mrs H will be in charge as I cannot cook steak to save my life.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              That sounds wonderful, must remember next time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Last night really wanted something light and spicy, so made the old favorite chicken keema from http://www.amazon.com/new-Indian-cook... - a really excellent cookbook (slice and brown lots of onions, add garlic and ginger minced, add ground coriander and (cumin) (not in the original), cayenne, salt, curry leaves (I used a bunch because they were dried, in quantity they do flavor nicely), ground chicken, stir and fry until done Just before it's finished add as many hot chilis slivered as you like, lemon or lime juice and chopped cilantro. You can do this in a good nonstick frying pan w/o oil, I added about 2 tsps. Lemon (lime really) rice with (took out some of the onion mix, added cumin seed, a small piece of cinnamon stick, a few cardamoms, more curry leaves, about a tb of black mustard seed, a clove or two, a little oil, basmati rice, a chicken stock cube, water, cook until done (about 18 mins), add the juice of a lime or lemon. The vinegary coleslaw from the 23rd with. Yogurt and poppadums done 1 min each in the microwave (M's department). Must say the Dehraduni basmati we got is great, the grains lengthen at least 2x.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                That sounds perfect for your weather. (Are you snowed in?) I'm writing down the rice brand so I can look for it next time I make a trek to the Asian market.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Oh yeah, the snow guys were just here and the drive had a good 2 feet of snow in it. I think the rice is a type (from the city of Dehradun) rather than a brand name, incidentally. Very good. I had a bit of the TJ's stuff and put it in with it - that smushed a bit when I stirred it up before serving.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: buttertart

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    So is "Dehraduni" featured very visibly on the bag? Our Asian market probably has 20 different brands (or maybe they are types; I've never paid close attention, usually just buy what I can get in the stupidmarket, as LW would say.) (Oh, poor LW, too. Lots of you, I guess. What a storm.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Looks pretty, but I'm already done with snow. :-) There's about 15" of snow for me just north of Boston. One quick-and-easy shoveling last night at 7:30 (about 5"), and this morning to get what the plow didn't get. But it's light and fluffy (and other than strong winds, the nor'easter seems to be done with dumping snow on us). The street plows did a great job, and a neighbor took care of the majority of my driveway at 6:45 this morning with his plow. I'll go out one more time to get the last of the stuff that landed after I came in from shoveling.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I was starving and caffeine-deprived with this morning's shoveling, so in I came to make coffee, and have some scrambled eggs with cream cheese and a toasted English muffin for breakfast. Yum. Especially the coffee. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        This was from Kalustyan's, local specialty store - they buy bulk and repackage it - and was labeled Dehraduni. I noticed it because I had read about it before in Indian cookbooks.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://kalustyans.com/searchcatalog.asp

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Hope all you Northeastern Hounds have power and are having nice warm things to eat and drink.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We're having folks over to watch football tonight, and I'm trying to keep it simple. I'll put out spiced nuts (made last week). A pot of black bean soup is bubbling on the stove as I type. That will be self-serve, w/ nearby bowls of sour cream, shredded cheddar, sliced scallions, and lime wedges as condiments. I will also make cheddar-garlic biscuits that I'lll keep warm in this nifty bread-warming thingy my mom gave me. Since I have a ton of it leftover, I'm going to slice up a pile of cold roast beef and put it on a platter with french bread, arugula, horseradish mayo, and creole mustard. Lots of holiday sweets available for those wanting dessert: pies, cranberry-nut bread, caramel corn, meringue drops.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    What time's the game again?....Oooh! Look at all the food! Game? What game? ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I've become a Saints fan (b/c, honestly, you can't have lived in this town for the past 5 years and not be one), but it used to be that the only reason I made an appearance at a football party was for the food. (When I was a kid, I loved when my parents had people over to watch a game b/c my mom always made Rotel/Velveeta dip, which, I have to confess, I still love. My mom made it at my sister's on Christmas Eve, and I inhaled a good bit of it.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I just saw the exchange you had with hotoynoodle on the Football Party Food ideas thread. Loved it!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        And I know what you mean - I was never really into baseball or football before moving to the Boston area 20+ years ago. Now, I'm a Red Sox fan (formerly a Yankees fan, but only because Bucky Dent and Goose Gossage had lived in my hometown back in the late 70s and I got to see them get keys to the town when the Yanks won the 78 Series and Bucky was adorable back then! LOL) and I now LOVE watching the Pats!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Well, DH predicts the Pats will be in the SB. So I hope we'll be doing New England- and New Orleans-themed food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: nomadchowwoman

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            From your DH's mouth to the NFL's ears! :-)