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What's For Dinner? Part 85 [old]

(Note: A new What's For Dinner thread has been started here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/781314 You're welcome to comment on the posts below, but if you have a new dinner to add, please jump to the new thread. -- The Chowhound Team )

This is the time of year when our menus all but declare our locales, and even with those of us feeling the delay of spring, there is new produce, the savoring of favorite stews, and much anticipation of the changing plates. Share all of it here.

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  1. Wow, can't believe I'm the first to post, WOOHOO!! Anyway, thanks to my good friend, Chef Chicklet, I am trying out my TJ's chimichurri salmon. Now, if any of you know me, you know I am not a huge fan of salmon, unless it's smoked or cured. One son had fish sticks and mac and cheese, which he loves. The other was at a playdate and ate there so is not hungry. The DH is, surprisingly, home for dinner tonight (yeah, the one night I'm not making good stuff!!) so he's getting the rest of the meatloaf, since he loves it, and doesn't have the meat restriciton I do since it's Good Friday. So he's got a leftover baked potato with it, and I've made some packaged chicken & broccoli linguine to go with my fish, cuz I need something yummy on my plate in case I don't like the fish, and I will feel incredibly deprived if I don't!! Cuz that is how I roll, and my poor DH has to put up with me, he's a saint!!

    Anyway, will let you all know what I thought of the salmon. Seriously, this is huge for me!!

    4 Replies
    1. re: Phurstluv

      PL, I have to say my dh is so picky picky whenerver I make salmon. The other day I'd bought some at Costco that they were sampling. The salmon is in the frozen section and its got a sauce of paprika and I want to say olive oil. The little one loved it, so I bought it, I thought it was pretty good, but my dh as always just can't get used to it, but ate it anyway since I constantly remind him of the beneits.

      1. re: chef chicklet

        Glad to know I'm not the only one!! My husband won't even touch it, not even when smoked or cured either! Anyway, I was a good girl, and ate my portion. It was okay, I had to add some fresh lemon on it, but the chimichurri sauce was not as flavorful as it is when made fresh, so I doubt I'll buy it again, but I'll consider it my Penant Sacrifice for the season!! The cat will get the rest of it, that is, if he doesn't turn his nose up at it due to the sauce!!

        1. re: Phurstluv

          that's so funny!
          What drives me wild, is he loves it raw - sushi/sashimi! Most of the sushi stuff he loves it! So how 'bout you? Is this it, only salmon the fish that you're not fond of?

          Pretty laid back here in No Ca, watched The Kings Speech last night which was Amazing, and Country Strong this am. Gweneth was exceptional, one if her best. I love her in any Englishy old periods, this was different and good! I needed some good muffins or a coffee cake with it this morning!!!

          1. re: chef chicklet

            I just don't like strong tasting fish, my Mom ruined me in the seventies when she insisted on making salmon patties with the canned stuff, which is supposed to be SOOOO good for you, since there's tiny bones in it for calcium. AND, my Dad used to have an important client that took him out blue-fishing every summer, (even though my Dad hated it, he had to go) and then of course, being from a country where you don't waste a precious crumb of food, he'd come home with a bunch of bluefish and my Mom dutifully cooked it, but I doubt any of us girls ate it. So, I've never liked any strong tasting fish.

            And with sushi, I usually just stick to ahi, I am too chicken to try salmon!!! I probably should, just so I know, but I'm a wimp, and the DH is not a huge sushi fan, so I usually get it by myself or with GFs. But don't get me near some gravlax or lox, b/c I'll eat it all day!! Funny how that works.

            I can't wait to see "The King's Speech", everyone had told me how wonderful it is, and was not that interested in "Country Strong" but now that I know someone who's seen it, I'll tell the DH to put it on his rotation for videos by mail. Good to know, thanks, Sweetie!

    2. My husband made Cornell chicken on the grill tonight, and I made mashed potatoes with aged Gouda and buttermilk, along with mashed butternut squash and honey cornbread, which was from a mix, but was pretty good.

      5 Replies
      1. re: sunflwrsdh

        What is Cornell Chickend? Mashed with Gouda sounds really good :o)

        1. re: BombayUpWithaTwist

          Cornell chicken is a grilled chicken with a "baste" I guess you would call it, made of cooking oil, an egg, cider vinegar, poultry seasoning and salt, all whisked together, and brushed on the chicken about every 5 minutes as you grill it. Mashed with gouda is really good!

          1. re: sunflwrsdh

            Wow. That. Sounds. Awesome. I've heard of Cornell chicken, but didn't really know the specifics of it, for some reason, I thought it involved a gravy? Wrong recipe, obviously. Will definitely give that a try this spring & summer. Thanks!

            1. re: sunflwrsdh

              Thanks for explaining Cornell Chicken, it sounds interesting! Using vinegar & egg on chicken is so different!

        2. May I? Thank you my friend!

          Rabaja, LindaWhit, PhurstLuv, MariaCarmen and onceadaylily - Thank you - all for such kinds words, and I appreciate every single one of them! We are celebrating Saturday night..

          For the popovers I very quickly found a recipe on line, I wasn't able to take time searching here on CH with Alex home today, so I found one crossed my fingers and used it. I am going to guess when I say that they turned out fairly well.

          The recipe, 1 cup of ap flour, 1 1/4 c milk, 1T melted butter and extra butter for the po tin, a teensy bit of salt, 2 eggs whipped well, and then mixed the other ingredients into that. Into a preheated oven 450F for 15 mins, then reduced the heat to 350F for 20 more mins. Crispy exterior, and sort of softish in the middle?? I am thinking this is as they should be?

          I ate mine with butter and apple jelly, totally yummy. The recipe only made 5 but read that it was enough for 6 and I did fill the cups correctly, 3/4 way up. The sixth one was really puney, so I tossed it. Perhaps filling 3/4 was incorrect, but once baked they seemed to be perfect and pretty. The little hint of making an incision or two on the sides once you remove them from the oven was very good information and it did keep them from falling over or into themeselves.

          For popover sandwiches, I read about that online, about a restaurant in New York that served these terrific sandwiches on giant popovers, they sounded so wonderful I made a mental note to make them one day.

          http://newyork.seriouseats.com/2010/0...

          I think a sandwich on a popover seems terrific, I will give it a go one of these days. I probably will use a chicken salad or tuna as a first try, maybe though it would be too squishy. I better think it through!

          Considering my busy little companion and the fact that I was really tired for some reason, here's a few pix of what I was up to this afternoon - as you see dinner was on the lighter side today.

           
           
          7 Replies
          1. re: chef chicklet

            my favorite thing we used to do with popovers was spread them while hot with orange honey butter. OH GOD, to die for. i could see the sandwiches being good with a smear of goat cheese, or brie and jelly..... i think, for me, anything heavier would overpower the lovely delicacy of the popover. Thanks CC!!! my BF's never had popovers (Fie!), so i'm going to have to make him some someday soon...... gaaaad, if i ever cook again.....

            1. re: chef chicklet

              Yes, you may, darling. And I think I might know what popover recipe you were looking for on CH. Because when CindyJ posted her recipe, I remember thinking that I had never made popovers, and maybe I should try my hand at them. *Yours* look gorgeous, though.

              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/7722...

                1. re: chef chicklet

                  That sounds just like the recipe I used, even with the slit, etc. I must have gotten the recipe here, though I can't really remember. But I would make them again, they are so easy! Slathering them with butter, fruit jelly or honey sounds TO DIE FOR!!

                  1. re: Phurstluv

                    I just typed in popovers and got a recipe off the internet. Later looking more at recipes, I saw one from the FN of Alex Guarnaschelli, and her's is exactly the same. Actually it tasted not too eggy which was what my main concern was.(the last one stayed nice and tall all day too!)

                    Honestly, that popover tin with its tall cups, and bar like attachment to hold them together is one of the most intimidating things I've seen!

                    1. re: chef chicklet

                      I know! It took me over 2 years of it sitting in my cupboard before I was brave enough to use it!!

                      1. re: Phurstluv

                        i've only ever used large a muffin tin, and it worked great! i wonder if they're better with the tall cups.... probably less dense? although i never thought ours came out dense at all.... they just poofed up attractively, like souffles.....

                2. The good weather in in north west England co-incides with a change of the Harters cookbook of the week to, appropriately, Sophie Grigson's "Sunshine Food" (2000). I dont recall the accompanying TV programme so it was probably a daytime show - from the book it must have been a fairly broad, generic, spin round the Mediterranean. Some nice recipes, even if we've probably got other versions of most in specific national/regional cuisine books.

                  So, eclectic as the book is, so is dinner.

                  There'll be socca (which is a new one on me) - a sort of thick pancake-y thingy made with chickpea flour and cooked in the oven. Comes from Nice apparently.

                  There'll be a Syrian bazargan - a salad of bulgar wheat, caulflower, radish, hazelnuts, pinenuts and walnuts - in a dressing of olive oil, pomegranate syrup, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, tomato puree and lemon juice & zest.

                  There'll be chicken kebabs. Not a recipe from the book but marinated in my "standard" Cypriotish mix of olive oil, thyme, garlic and lemon juice and then stuck under the grill

                  And, back to Sophie, a Moroccan orange salad - sliced oranges, sliced dates, flaked almonds, a little icing sugar, a little orange flower water.

                  18 Replies
                  1. re: Harters

                    I've never heard of socca. I'm curious, Harters, is this supposed to be topped with anything, or served with butter?

                    1. re: onceadaylily

                      Nope. Seems to be eaten just as it as - as a snacky carb. It's just flour and water. You then heat oil in a roast tin and pour the batter in with a topping of finely chopped rosemary if you like (I think I like)

                      1. re: Harters

                        I just looked it up online. It looks interesting, very rustic. I always put rosemary and salt on my flatbread before I bake it, and this looks similar (a bit thinner though, and very crisp). I saw a picture of one that looked to have shaved parmesan on top . . . as well as some that are prepared as 'pizzas'. I doubt very much that is the traditional way to serve it though. It seems to be meant as a simple bread, perhaps served with olive oil, but mainly enjoyed on its own. Thanks for opening my eyes to this.

                        1. re: Harters

                          I've heard about socca for years (living in Berkeley at the onset of the "gourmet revolution" one tended to pick up on things) but never made it - successful or no? Worthwhile? I understand it has to be a bit scorched to be comme il faut.

                          1. re: buttertart

                            i've had it a few times, never super crispy tho. rather like a stiffish pancake. A little too dense for my taste.

                            1. re: buttertart

                              Socca was successful. At least we think it was. Sort of pancake texture but much thicker (Brits might understand if I say even thicker than a Staffordshire oatcake - although even that's a bit regional). And quite oily.

                              Glad we've done it but no great rush to repeat it. Now the bargazan - that's an absolute keeper.

                              1. re: Harters

                                was yours a bit oily? i've only had it in Berkely, CA, and it was a bit oily, which i don't hold against it..... but i didn't love it.

                                  1. re: buttertart

                                    hah - i copied it down from his post on the old thread:

                                    "a salad of bulgar wheat, caulflower, radish, hazelnuts, pinenuts and walnuts - in a dressing of olive oil, pomegranate syrup, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, tomato puree and lemon juice & zest."

                                    i was going to make it tonight, but got sidetracked by cauliflower fritters and an asian slaw.

                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                      Thanks mc2, that sounds excellent - like an Egyptian salad we used to get at a place on the Upper East Side here a while ago (plus beaucoup garlic).
                                      We had YOUR pernil - absolutely delicious but not as garlicky as I expected, despite the 14 cloves. Wonder if there's a non-nasty dehydrated garlic out there I could use to get it to anti-vampire level. With: Cold asparagus soup to start, bulgur pilaf, and very nice fresh artichokes with sour cream with shallots and salt and pepper in it with the roast. roxlet's fab lemon meringue pie to finish.

                                      1. re: buttertart

                                        hmmm, i wonder why not so garlicky? tho maybe because of slow cooking it mellows, so not the bite you expected. glad you enjoyed anyway. is the sour cream stuffed between the choke's leaves, or is that a dipping sauce?

                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                          Dipping sauce. It's modeled on one I read about in Elle magazine about a century ago (when we lived in Berkeley!) - that was made with creme fraiche. When feeling virtuous I use fat-free Greek yogurt, but hey, it was Easter!

                                          1. re: buttertart

                                            so it's just sour cream, minced shallots, salt and pepper?

                                          2. re: mariacarmen

                                            Made dynamite tacos last night with some of the pork fried up a bit and fresh guac and pico, yum yum yum. The garlic is (pleasantly) more evident when it's cold.

                                            1. re: buttertart

                                              isn't that the BEST for tacos? it's really my sole reason for making it.

                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                Love it. Your recipe is mine for good now!

                                1. re: Harters

                                  When I've had socca, I've eaten it as a filled crepe. It's particularly good with a thickish lamb stew. The chickpea flour is lends itself to myriad palates: Proven├žal, Spanish, North African or even Indian.

                            2. Last night I steamed some fish (I think it was a cod of some sort, it was frozen and something I bought in Japan Town last month or so) with sliced ginger, scallions and black bean sauce. It was so good.
                              I'd intended to have the fish with leftover ma po tofu, but the fish was so delicious I didn't even have any of the second dish. Just lots of flaky white fish over fresh brown rice with the delicious sauce that pooled in the plate from steaming.
                              I really want to find one of those tools to get the plate out of your wok/pot without tipping anything over.
                              I could eat this dish everyweek, and it was quite point friendly!

                              4 Replies
                              1. re: rabaja

                                Your cod sounds great! I don't cook fish much, but I want to more. I may have to try your recipe! Do you steam it in the wok in a bamboo steamer?

                                1. re: BombayUpWithaTwist

                                  Me too, friend me too. Yes, Rabaja, we like cod here, I will have to try that.

                                  1. re: Phurstluv

                                    It is so darn easy. I considered making it again tonight, it's that good.

                                    BUwaT, I used a plate to steam my fish. Big pot, little rack, couple inches of water in the pot and a plate slightly smaller in diameter than the pot. Does that make sense?

                                    For unknown reasons I got rid of my bamboo steamer, and I've yet to get my own wok.

                                    I really must remedy those two things.

                                    And now I think a Saturday night gin martini is in order.

                                    1. re: rabaja

                                      Rabaja, yes, the way you steamed the fish makes perfect sense! Thanks for explaining the method. I think I really need to try this recipe!

                                      I also love gin martinis! As a matter of fact, I had a couple last night ;o)