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Sep 11, 2011 11:55 AM

What's for dinner? Part #106 [old]

I thought I'd start a new thread as the old one was getting over 300 posts....

What's cookin' in your neck of the woods?

We had homemade pizza last night which was devoured by our poker buddies (as we took all of their money).

I have a friend visiting for a few days, and she's been in Germany for a while now, so I think some good, red-blooded 'murrcan dinner's in order: steaks (if it doesn't rain again) on the grill, corn on the cob - the last of the season, and tomato salad. If I feel 'adventurous', I might roast some potatoes in duck fat.

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  1. Congrats on the win. :) Tonight we're either cleaning up the fridge and eating leftovers, or, if the boyfriend is hungry for something else, I'll make a batch of Post Punk Kitchen's ancho lentil tacos. It's the first time out for me with this dish, so I'll follow the recipe fairly closely, but I'll add a diced poblano to the onion and garlic mixture, and serve it with the cilantro lime crema, shredded cabbage, with sharp cheddar on offer. See what I did there? A fake meat taco treated like a fish taco. Two hungry birds with one stone. Simple salads (spinach, chopped boiled egg, broccoli, and cucumber) to go with. I do hope I like this taco. If I do, PPK's 'Snobby Joe's' might be my next lentil foray.

    (And I just used a animal-killing cliche to describe how I am adding dairy to a vegan recipe. I'm not very good at being a veggist, am I?


    (And I've decided to call myself a veggist, in order to avoid the people who tell me that I can't call myself a vegetarian. I'm starting a new movement.)

    10 Replies
    1. re: onceadaylily

      oadl those tacos sound and look so enticing. I love lentils and this looks like a delicious recipe. Love PPK's idea of lentil sloppy Joes too!! I may have to give that a try.

      1. re: Breadcrumbs

        Thanks, BC, and welcome back to WFD. But I hit a snag. I was in a hurry at the market, and grabbed what I *thought* were brown lentils (the bag was labeled as whole baby lentils, and they were, well, brown). But, on the BACK of the package, under ingredients, it says: crimson lentils.

        Not only do I already have red lentils in the pantry, but I doubt very much that these are going to hold their shape enough for tacos. I think I'm still going to give it a go, but brown lentils have an earthy quality that is going to be missed, even if I can manage to get the lentils to hold their shape.

        And your dinner sounds truly amazing, BC.

        1. re: onceadaylily

          I've made lentil tacos with red lentils, and they turned out very well. IMHO, their breaking down slightly isn't a bad thing.

      2. re: onceadaylily

        OADL, while you use cliches, I actually added meat to a vegan soup I made last Friday. Purslane cooked in salsa verde was delicious for a light meal over the weekend, but so much more satisfying after stewing with cubed pork shoulder and spices to make a chile verde con verdolagas.

        1. re: JungMann

          Well it's a meagan soup now, ain't it, JM? ^-

        2. re: onceadaylily

          "Two hungry birds with one stone." oh that is the worst one of all lily ;) those tacos sound good. i've had numerous bean tacos, but have never tried lentil

          1. re: crowmuncher

            We're actually going to make the tacos tonight. Last night, I had so many leftovers that the boyfriend pointed out that I didn't have to cook a thing. So, we made a nice dent in the tupperware tower (curry with rice, pasta, fried corn, hummus). I'll use vegetarian beef BTB to cook the lentils in, to fortify the faux. *crosses fingers*

            Christina, I feel better knowing that someone on WFD has used the red in this way. Thanks! The internet chatter about whether or not these could be used in the same way as brown was scant and contradictory (one website described the baby crimsons as: meaty mushy. WTH).

            1. re: onceadaylily

              "vegetarian beef"? that is so funny; if i had tortillas i would totally make blackbean tacos tonight; hope you enjoyed those tacos :)

              1. re: crowmuncher

                Haha. It's actually called 'no-beef base'. Better Than Bouillon put out two vegetarian bases, and I was a fan of them even before I ditched the meats. They don't taste as salty as their meat-based offerings. I use a little bit of the no-chicken base when I make vegetable stock, and it makes a big difference. The funny thing is that neither the vegetable nor the mushroom base (which you'll see vegetarians and vegans talking about on blogs all the time) is labeled as vegetarian on the Superior Touch website, which makes me think that there's a lil meat in there.

                And I now have a crush on petite crimson lentils (they are *nothing* like the reds I have in the pantry). They taste very much like baby black beans, but just a little nutty, and with an extra savory something. And they held their shape perfectly! I kept sneaking spoonfuls of them while my onions were cooking down. And I liked the tacos quite a bit, especially after I added a little chili powder, worcestershire sauce, and a drop of liquid smoke. The man ate five, with a review of "Damn, these are really good, honey."

        3. Yesterday I took a trip to the butcher to pick up something to grill as the hot summery days are soon to come to an end however, all intentions of grilling were cast to the wind when I eyed some absolutely scrumptious looking beef short ribs. I brought them home with absolutely no idea what I was going to do with them but I did know that whatever it was, I also need the dish to include mushrooms since I couldn't resist a big bag of creminis and shitakes at the Farmer's Market on Friday.

          A quick search in EYB narrowed the contenders and in the end, I decided to make Pasta hankies and brasato al Barolo from "On Top of Spaghetti…: Macaroni, Linguine, Penne, and Pasta of Every Kind" by George Germon and Johanne Killeen. This is the first recipe I'm trying from this lovely book that's new to me - an Abe's purchase on the recommendation of another Hound.

          I must say this dish grabbed our attention hours ago as the onions were cooking away in some evoo and the caramelized juices of the meat that had just been seared off in the same pan. It's now been simmering away for almost 3 hours and having just come inside after an afternoon outdoors, this dish sure smells incredible. I hope it doesn't disappoint since Barolo doesn't come cheap!! While I don't have time or the energy to make fresh pasta tonight, I do have some Pappardelle from Italy so that will have to suffice.

          I'll let you know how it goes! Happy Sunday dinner everyone!

          16 Replies
          1. re: Breadcrumbs

            Ok, just me back w an update. If you happen to have this cookbook on hand, please run, don't walk to mark this recipe. . . what an outstanding, decadent pasta this turned out to be! Though we were stuffed, we managed to squeeze in a slice of Peach Crostata from the Zuni cookbook. I'll have to add a review of that dish to the old COTM thread later. At the moment, we're all en route to the couch wishing we were wearing loungers!!

            1. re: Breadcrumbs

              Wow, looks and sound amazing! Thanks for posting!

              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                Looks delicious. I do have On Top of Spaghetti, thanks for the recommendation!

                1. re: Rubee

                  Thanks sunflwrsdh and Rubee!

                  Rubee, have you tried any dishes from that book? I was flipping through it last night and there seemed to be a lot of delicious-sounding dishes.

                2. re: Breadcrumbs

                  I made an apple pie today and applesauce for the freezer. I wanted to make a crostata, but DH wanted a full pie.

                  I am wondering if you put your crostata on a baking pan.

                  Today I started out with a baking pan under the pyrex 10" pie pan, but pulled the baking pan out from underneath the pie pan after about 5 minutes, thinking that the pan would keep the bottom crust from browning.

                  I know that a crostata needs a surface to sit on, so am wondering have you ever put the crostata into a pie pan, or do you put it on a baking sheet, or have you done both, and which do you prefer.

                  1. re: Rella

                    Hi Rella, I always make mine on a jelly roll pan on a piece of parchment paper. There's always lots of space between the crostata and the sides of the pan which I think is important to prevent the pie from steaming. Using this method my bottom crust has always come out well-cooked and crispy. I hope that helps.

                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                      Oh, I see. I didn't think about the 'steaming' aspect. That certainly makes sense. Thanks so much.

                      1. re: Rella

                        Good luck Rella, let us know how it turns out next time.

                  2. re: Breadcrumbs

                    OMG. You're killing me with that pasta...

                    1. re: inaplasticcup

                      Thanks ina, just in case you're tempted to make it, I happened to find the recipe online:


                    2. re: Breadcrumbs

                      ABSOLUTELY GORGEOUS! Oh yeah - the food looks great too! ;-)

                      1. re: LindaWhit

                        Why thank-you Linda, you're lookin' pretty fine yourself!! ; - )

                    3. re: Breadcrumbs

                      in the pick the pasta looks fresh; i was thinking u would say u made it yourself after i saw it- looks soooo good

                      and Crostata too; nothing like more carbs to wash down your carbs- yum :)

                      1. re: crowmuncher

                        Thanks crowmuncher. . . .you're so right!! Needless to say we all slipped into food-induced comas shortly thereafter!!

                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                          just noticed i meant to type "pic"... yeah the carb coma is not joke; i can barely make through an hour tv episode when i eat like that- it's pretty embarassing

                    4. Ended up getting a nice 1.5 lb tri-tip steak that is currently marinating in soy, Maggi, and Worcestershire sauce as well as a dash of balsamic vinegar, along with thyme, rosemary, and hot paprika.

                      Tomatoes are cut up, onions are sweating out their stinkiness with some salt, parsley still needs to be chopped.... the potatoes are diced and ready to be covered in duck fatty goodness before they go in the oven..... and if it stops fucking raining soon, we may be able to light the coals in an hour or so, as planned. Cobs will be boiled.

                      8 Replies
                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                          Yah, they didn't really come out the way I hoped. I diced 3 large russets, tossed them with duck fat, herbs de Provence & sea salt, but they stuck to the foil and got all mushy. There were only a few cripsy bits, and I had envisioned super-crispy browned potato dice.

                          Perhaps a too starchy choice? I even ice-watered them for an hour or so. Meh. A bit of a waste for the awesome duck fat.

                          1. re: linguafood

                            I'm thinking that maybe the foil packet steamed them to mush. Next time maybe try just roasting on a sheet, so they can get nice and brown?

                            1. re: linguafood

                              I have best luck with duck fat and raw potatoes frying them in a pan on top of the stove. For roast ones, I think they need to be at least parboiled to get crisp (that's how my mom did them, I haven't roasted potatoes in forever).

                              1. re: buttertart

                                i agree with this - and i've only done them once (shame on me) - stove top, in a pan. tho i don't remember par-boiling.... they came out crispy, with a cararmelly goodness from the duck fat.

                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                  thx, ladies. i'll do stove-top next time. low and slow?

                                  1. re: linguafood

                                    High to brown initially and low to cook through.

                          2. re: linguafood

                            I like the sound of that marinade, lingua. (And I had complete faith that you'd clean 'em out! :) )

                          3. In a bid to quickly cool down some homebrew wort, DH used about 1/3 of the meat in our freezer as cooling packs. Thus we're heading into a carnivorous week, starting with tonight's hamburgers.

                            I've got some 1/4 lb. 80/20 beef patties resting in a light coat of kosher salt, pepper, Montreal Steak Seasoning, a little worcestershire, and minced garlic. They'll be grilled up and served on potato rolls along with baked beans and a marinated cuke-tomato-dill salad. Should have another veg., probably, but I'm not sure what. A long bike ride this afternoon has worn me out :)

                            6 Replies
                            1. re: ChristinaMason

                              "In a bid to quickly cool down some homebrew wort, DH used about 1/3 of the meat in our freezer as cooling packs. Thus we're heading into a carnivorous week, starting with tonight's hamburgers."

                              Everything about these two sentences is absolutely brilliant!

                              1. re: ChristinaMason

                                What are you guys gonna do with the wort, CM?

                                1. re: inaplasticcup

                                  DH is brewing a made a fresh-hopped IPA. The yeast was super-active and it's bubbling away like crazy. Hope it turns out well. I'll be doing the drinking.

                                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                                    Cheers to our homebrewing men, CM!

                                    Sometimes I drink the sweet wort because it reminds me of this Korean rice dessert drink thing called shikhae.

                                    Enjoy your beer, my dear. :)

                              2. Chicken Satay with an extra kick of Corriander, Spicy Shrimp fried rice, and a cucumber salad with jalapenos, red onions, cilantro, lime juice, and rice vinegar. My mouth is ooooHHHHHHH so satisfied right now.

                                1 Reply