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Simple food which you love

Hi. I am curious if you like to share some simple foods which you love. Simple as in simple in ingredients, and simple preparations.

For me, probably the simplest one is: butter spread on a nicely toasted piece of bread.

I also love:

1) Sauted green bean with a touch of salt and butter and oil (usually a mix of butter.

2) Blanched Chinese broccoli with some oyster sauce

What about yours? Thanks.

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  1. 1) A well cooked piece of fresh fish

    2) Oatmeal

    3) Bananas smothered in peanut butter

    4) Actually, anything smothered in peanut butter

    5) Really rich, creamy, freshly churned ice cream

    6) a really crispy roasted potato

    7) any veg that is still al dente. almost always with plenty of garlic

    2 Replies
    1. re: mattstolz

      Tomatoes off the vine. The small ones don't ever make it into the house.

      With you on the bread and butter.

      1. Simple is pretty much my culinary mantra. Most everything I make is approached from the "best ingredients take basic preparations" point of view. But, to offer a couple favorites that come to mind:

        Steamed shellfish (crabs, lobsters, clams, etc.) dumped in the center of a table and have at it.

        A bucket filled with ice, beer, and oysters - I'll bring a knife.

        A loaf of warm, crusty bread. Maybe get extra fancy and throw a hunk or two of cheese on the board - I'll bring another knife.

        A roasted chicken.

        3 Replies
        1. re: MGZ

          <A loaf of warm, crusty bread. Maybe get extra fancy and throw a hunk or two of cheese on the board - I'll bring another knife.>

          this one doesnt even need a knife!

            1. re: Mother of four

              Sourdough bread cooked in my cast iron Dutch oven, still hot and slathered with butter. Now that's a meal.

        2. Bacon and tomato sandwiches with mayo.

          1 Reply
          1. re: marymac

            Yum! Or leftover sliced turkey on white bread with mayo and a little salt; if you want it fancier, use bacon salt!

          2. Generic peanut butter scooped from the jar with a knife, then encased in a non-sweetened cereal.

            1 Reply
            1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

              .... sometime I just scoop the peanut butter and stick it in my mouth..... but I don't think that should count as any food preparation :)

            2. Buttered Spinach

              Grits with butter

              Baked or Mashed Potato with butter

              Crusty Italian Bread with butter

              Grilled Steak with Compound Butter

              Poached Lobster in butter

              Soft Scrambled Eggs or Basted Eggs with butter......

              ......maybe I just like butter.

              13 Replies
              1. re: fourunder

                Holy crap all these butter :D

                Long time no see, fourunder

                1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                  Glad to see you are aware of the esentials of fine guilty pleasures. Something to convey the butter to your mouth.

                  1. re: INDIANRIVERFL

                    Good observation. Maybe the butter is the target. The spinach, lobster...etc are just complementary.

                    1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                      pickling cucumbers in lime juice with salt.
                      bread and cheese.
                      sardines and saltines.
                      kosher dill pickles with cream cheese and ham.

                      1. re: dratlover

                        Oh.... all of them sounds so good, especially the first one.

                      2. re: Chemicalkinetics

                        this is definitely the first time ive ever heard lobster referred to as simply a vehicle for something else.

                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                            many worthy things can be "just" a handle for butter....

                  2. re: fourunder

                    Should we point your doctor to this post of yours?

                    1. re: fourunder

                      " Crusty Italian Bread with butter "
                      mmmm me too, I want the bread w/seeds if at all possible-

                    2. 1) Buttered pasta with shredded sharp cheddar

                      2) Cold cereal with a sliced banana and very cold milk

                      3) Nacho Cheese Doritos with cottage cheese

                      4) A banana

                      5) Roasted brussels sprouts with a little olive oil and balsamic vinegar

                      6) Greek yogurt with homemade pear, peach or strawberry jam

                      1. The simplest, which really LOVE:

                        Spaghettini with Garlic and Olive Oil. Just olive oil, lots of garlic, red pepper flakes and anchovies(if I have any!), over spaghettini/spaghetti and topped with parmesan and chopped parsley. For me, the simplest and best pasta!!

                        8 Replies
                            1. re: Mother of four

                              +3 and buttered egg noodles with salt, pepper, grated parm

                          1. re: arktos

                            toss some breadcrumbs and parm in with the garlic and olive oil and youve got a winner for me. mmm

                              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                'toss some breadcrumbs and parm in with the garlic and olive oil '

                                What I do is to get some well seasoned croutons, grind them down and toss 'em in. A touch of lemon doesn't hurt either.

                                1. re: arktos

                                  in my house, how it normally works is, bread becomes stale, stale bread becomes seasoned croutons, and seasoned croutons become breadcrumbs. so we're pretty much on the same page here haha

                              2. A salad of perfect Bibb lettuce with a light tossing in 3/1 olive oil and home made white wine vinegar

                                A steamed artichoke with very lemony mayo made with peanut oil

                                Fresh oysters on the half shell with a squirt of lemon and one twist of the pepper grinder

                                A great cup of coffee and a warm hard roll with a little apricot almond marmalade

                                1. Pizza
                                  Raw oysters with a dab of horseradish, with a beer of course!


                                  1. Any fresh fruit

                                    Steamed broccoli

                                    Vanilla bean ice cream

                                    White rice

                                    Fresh baked bread (any kind)


                                    Homemade yogurt (plain)

                                    1. Look at the nom de internet that I use at this website.

                                      1. People. I cannot individually thank you. These are great responses, and really give me some new idea what to make when I am pressed in time (or just feeling lazy). I hope you are having as much fun as I am. Keep these comments coming in, so we can learn more. Thanks.

                                        1. Roast chicken without a doubt.

                                          5 Replies
                                            1. re: swoll50

                                              One of the harder things to do perfectly.

                                              1. re: huiray

                                                Um, just curious why you find it hard. I find it truly easy.

                                                1. re: sueatmo

                                                  It depends on what one is satisfied with in terms of a roast chicken.

                                                  My impression is that a lot of chef-type folks have said that it is hard to get it 'just right' with the "perfect" (whatever they may understand by the term) condition of the final product - skin, juiciness, done-ness, etc etc. On TCM I remember when Jonathan Waxman made his "famous" (as perceived) roast chicken and judges/competitors were talking about how hard it is to get it "just right". On TC5 episode 12 ("Last Supper") Fabio Viviani made roast chicken for Lydia Bastianich and people at the table were making comments about how making perfect roast chicken was not such an easy thing to do.

                                                  Perhaps you do have no difficulty with making the perfect roast chicken. More power to you, then!

                                                  1. re: huiray

                                                    I don't strive for perfection. If the chicken is golden brown, is done clear through to the bone, and the herbs I've put under the skin and in the cavity are smelling wonderful along with the roast chicken, I call it good. Very good. I adore roast chicken.

                                            2. Baked sweet potato with butter, salt and pepper.

                                              Greens stewed with salt pork and served with sport peppers.

                                              Good stone ground grits with a poached egg, butter, salt and pepper.

                                              Baked spareribs seasoned only with salt and pepper.


                                              1 Reply
                                              1. re: agoodbite

                                                I agree with this whole post. your dixie is showin.

                                              2. Scrambled eggs:

                                                Pan w/ good veggie oil heated till hot (NOT, repeat, *NOT* non-stick pan)
                                                2-3 eggs (or more) broken directly into the pan+oil
                                                Toss shells in sink
                                                Use spatula to break yolks and scramble the whole mix
                                                Turn off heat when egg mix is roughly half "turned" or "set"
                                                Get plate (eggs continue to cook a bit more in pan)
                                                Plop scrambled eggs onto plate, scrape off burnt edges (if any) and add to plate

                                                4 Replies
                                                1. re: huiray

                                                  you forgot the step right before eat:

                                                  Add Sriracha.

                                                  1. re: mattstolz

                                                    If you like. :-)

                                                    Moi, I'm happy eating them as-is.

                                                  2. re: huiray

                                                    much, much better with goose or duck fat or butter. i'll even take bacon grease over veggie oil any day (especially some mysterious "veggie" oil)

                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                      Heh. OK, I'll go for the goose or duck fat, but I'll decline the butter. My personal preferences. So let's say "oil of your choice". How's that?

                                                      ETA: I like the clean, clear taste of the eggs when I use a good veggie or other good neutral oil. Duck fat (for example) would turn the dish - for me - towards a more complicated taste profile, even though it would indeed be tasty.

                                                  3. Labneh with garlic spread on Markouk bread stuffed with tomatoes and cucumbers.

                                                    1. I'm with everyone on the hot, buttered bread. During the summer, a sliced tomato, hot buttered toast and a couple of eggs are my go-to breakfast.

                                                      For salad, just some good greens, a drizzle of olive oil, a squeeze of lemon juice and a bit of sea salt and pepper.

                                                      I also like simple muesli. Just quick-cooking oats soaked overnight in milk. Adding just a bit of sliced apple and/or roasted nuts makes it quite heavenly!

                                                      1. A tomato from my garden with sea salt and fresh cracked pepper.
                                                        (like everyone else) fresh bread with cultured butter and sea salt.
                                                        roasted cauliflower w/ garlic, salt, and pepper
                                                        Seared scallops with salt and pepper
                                                        A bucket of ice w/ oysters and beer (a la MGZ)
                                                        Steamed Shellfish on a table (a la MGZ as well)
                                                        A good BLT with mayo (has to be on white toast)
                                                        Honey Nut Cheerios w/ cold half and half (yeah I know... but it's delicious)
                                                        A fresh baguette with Port Salut cheese or stilton with a sliced Mutsu or Empire apple
                                                        Greek yogurt drizzled with honey
                                                        An over medium egg on buttered toast with salt and pepper
                                                        ok, time to stop now....

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: kubasd23

                                                          "Greek yogurt drizzled with honey"

                                                          me too

                                                        2. Steamed/boiled frozen peas with kosher salt-could happily eat a pound of these if I let myself.
                                                          Salmon sashimi.
                                                          Arugula-I've been getting it from my CSA the last few weeks and it's the one thing I don't plan a dish for. I've just come to accept that I'm going to eat the whole bunch, by myself, raw, over the course of a couple of days.
                                                          Spaghetti with good olive oil, parsley, crushed red pepper, and lemon zest. I like to cook half of the red pepper in the oil, and add half raw at the end (based on a Giada De Lauretiis recipe), so I guess that takes away from the simplicity a bit, but it is still done in the time it takes to cook the spaghetti so I think it should count.
                                                          Steak. Hard sear in a cast iron for a couple of minutes per side so it's as rare as possible, with just salt and pepper and a drizzle of Worcestershire while eating is hard to beat.
                                                          Pickles. I don't even buy them very often because if they're in the fridge I'll eat one (okay, realistically three) every time I'm in the general vicinity of the kitchen. By which I mean the ground floor of the house.

                                                          1 Reply
                                                          1. re: ErnieD

                                                            " Steak. Hard sear in a cast iron for a couple of minutes per side so it's as rare as possible, with just salt and pepper and a drizzle of Worcestershire while eating is hard to beat "


                                                          2. Just opened littlenecks with a squeeze of lemon, accompanied by a bottle of beer, within view of the ocean in Rhode Island.

                                                            1 Reply
                                                            1. re: escondido123

                                                              YES!! or simply steamed stammers with some lemon, beer, on the deck of my uncle's beach house (in RI)

                                                            2. Pinto beans, cooked with a little bacon OR topped with a bit of butter after cooking.
                                                              Okra fried in corn meal

                                                              2 Replies
                                                              1. re: Tripeler

                                                                Ditto the pinto beans - I thought it was just me!

                                                                1. re: Peg

                                                                  I forgot to add that some soft steamed corn tortillas are great with pinto beans. Dip them into the bean liquor, or put on a little bit of butter. Good and simple, yeah!

                                                              2. Saag paneer with naan. Simple if someone else makes it, preferably from Koshi's in Bangalore, India.

                                                                1. Oysters. Doesn't get much simpler than that.

                                                                  1. Mashed potato with green peas mixed in and topped with a fried egg or three..
                                                                    Plain boiled pinto beans with salted goats butter.
                                                                    Steamed spinach (no butter).
                                                                    Fresh peas eaten raw from the pod.
                                                                    Tomatoes eaten off the vine, warm from the sun.

                                                                    4 Replies
                                                                    1. re: Peg

                                                                      "Steamed spinach (no butter)."

                                                                      What do you mean by no butter?


                                                                      (inside joke).

                                                                      If you say Gin, then I say Scotch :)

                                                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                        YES! Scotch.... my favorite. Neat, of course :)

                                                                        1. re: kubasd23

                                                                          I have a silly question kubasd. Which board should I go to in order to discuss Scotch? Spirits?

                                                                          1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                            yep! I don't know that I've gone on that one, actually. I think it could be dangerous to my liver to venture over to that side of chowhound... haha

                                                                    2. A ripe pear with a chunk of good Gouda cheese
                                                                      A summer honeyrock melon
                                                                      Thinly sliced good salami
                                                                      A garden tomato
                                                                      Home made garlic bread
                                                                      Ripe avocado on chewy bread with fresh ground salt and pepper

                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                      1. re: berkleybabe

                                                                        Fabulous watermelon, old-fashioned strawberries, raspberries off the cane.

                                                                        1. re: berkleybabe

                                                                          oh dear lord yes on the ripe avocado on chewy bread with salt and pepper. Even w/o the bread.... I just sprinkle the half with sea salt and course ground black pepper and eat it w/ a spoon!

                                                                        2. Spaghetti
                                                                          Fresh summer corn on the cob with lots of butter
                                                                          Vanilla ice cream w/ hot fudge and walnuts topped with fresh whipped cream
                                                                          Roast chicken
                                                                          A good tuna melt
                                                                          Chicken pot pie
                                                                          BBQ spareribs
                                                                          Chicken noodle soup
                                                                          Hot dogs with mustard and onion
                                                                          Peanut butter on saltines
                                                                          Popcorn with a little melted butter and a sprinkle of fresh grated parmesan
                                                                          Baked Nachos w/ cheddar and salsa

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: noodlepoodle

                                                                            In scrolling down this topic, I was wondering when someone was going to mention fresh corn on the cob. Tons of butter and sea salt.

                                                                            In the same vein, fresh, just shelled sweet peas lightly blanched with butter and salt.

                                                                            Saltine crackers with Hope Creamery butter.

                                                                            Smoked Turkey rolled around a smear of jalapeno cream cheese.

                                                                            Campbell's tomato soup and a grilled cheese sandwich.

                                                                            1. re: justalex

                                                                              grilled with crema and spicy rub for me on the corn!

                                                                              1. re: justalex

                                                                                +1 Oh HELL yeah!!! Every one of those!!!

                                                                            2. Radishes! I think I am the only one who buys them every week.
                                                                              Besides berries and fruit.

                                                                              1. Grilled cheese and tomato soup!

                                                                                1. I love well-done grilled salmon, a well-made mushroom omelet with whole wheat toast, and any fresh-warm-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookies, chocolate brownie, or cinnamon bun.

                                                                                  1. 1) Roasted bone marrow spread on toast.

                                                                                    2) Simple capresse salad with amazing heirloom tomatoes at peak season.

                                                                                    3) A true wood fire neopolitan style pizza (simple ingredients, not so simple to make, so I don't know if this one counts).

                                                                                    4) Perfectly soft poached egg with homemade multigrain toast.

                                                                                    5) A well made shot of espresso with that perfect little layer of "creme" on top.

                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                    1. re: adamferrior

                                                                                      i like your style. agree with the entirety of your post!

                                                                                    2. I've noticed that various choices posted here are foods that are "simple" in the sense that they involve relatively few components but may require great skill to do perfectly (or sufficiently well) to afford 'enjoyment'. This combination might not be so "simple" after all. It seems to me the OP might have in mind stuff more along the lines of minimal-component foods that require little to no skill to prepare that are loved by folks - such as the examples he gives?

                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                      1. re: huiray

                                                                                        I have noticed that too. Few of the suggested foods have few but sophisticated components. :) It is like making Fullerene. :P Sure it is just carbon molecules, but it wasn't straightforward to make and to characterize it (the synthesis of it leads to 1996 Nobel Prize).

                                                                                        That being said, this is an opinion section. It may take these authors little efforts to produce these ingredients. More importantly, their suggestions are definitely within the general premise of the topic and have been generally helpful, so I am grateful for their thoughts.

                                                                                        In light of the numbers of other posts have completely gone off topic, I say we are very successful in this thread. :) Every post is constructive and helpful.

                                                                                        1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                          But of course. I was commenting on something that struck me, and found it interesting what some folks considered simple and what others considered to be so.
                                                                                          (I myself have freely wandered far afield in many a thread!)

                                                                                        2. re: huiray

                                                                                          i think that all "simple" things require far more skill to prepare perfectly than people realize! thats why we appreciate them!

                                                                                        3. Just thought of another (partly b/c I am having it for breakfast).

                                                                                          Canned lychee, straight from the can, with a spoon. Yum.

                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                            Now that's simple! (from the consumer's viewpoint, of course)

                                                                                            1. re: ipsedixit

                                                                                              :) I have never tried it (canned lychee).

                                                                                              1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                                i just discovered canned lychees stuffed with cream cheese.

                                                                                            2. thin slices of salami crisped in the over, topped with a small dab of sour cream and torn basil
                                                                                              fresh blueberries mixed with sourcream and brown sugar (sensing a theme?)
                                                                                              a slice of hothouse cucumber topped with a tangy goat cheese and salt
                                                                                              a purchased slice of chocolate cake with some of my red wine poured on it.
                                                                                              storebought mayo mixed with garlic and saffron, dip in roasted fingerling potato
                                                                                              sliced jalapeno, blanched and slow cooked with sugar, place on creamcheese blanket cracker.
                                                                                              double double animal style (this one does require operating a vehicle.) Fun thread.

                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                              1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

                                                                                                Jalapenos blanched and slow cooked with sugar sounds like something I might have to try. I do like spicy/sweet combos and with the cream cheese and cracker it sounds perfect. It may become my new crave. Thanks!

                                                                                              2. Fage 2% with dark chocolate chips mixed in

                                                                                                4 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: laliz

                                                                                                    I'll even go for the 0% fat Fage, it's that good (especially with a goodly squeeze of honey).

                                                                                                      1. re: Chemicalkinetics

                                                                                                        I agree that fat free yogurt generally is abysmal, but Fage is different.

                                                                                                  2. One I forgot because it's December...

                                                                                                    A tomato fresh from the garden, sliced, topped with a leaf (or two) of basil fresh from the garden.

                                                                                                    1. Porridge, a little salt and full fat milk.
                                                                                                      Boiled Ayrshire Potatoes with a large knob of salted butter.
                                                                                                      Scone with cream and raspberry jam

                                                                                                      1. 1) Greek yogurt with tart berries
                                                                                                        2) Mashed avo spread on toast
                                                                                                        3) A good chewy bagel with cream cheese
                                                                                                        4) Goat cheese spread on a crispy cracker
                                                                                                        5) A plain waffle with a pat of butter and light brown sugar

                                                                                                        1. cinnamon toast, which I've learned to make low carb enough for me to eat, and it is a wonderful treat.

                                                                                                          a protein shake made with fresh fruit and vanilla whey powder

                                                                                                          mustard greens/spinach cooked in a homemade chicken broth

                                                                                                          BLTs made with seasonal tomatoes

                                                                                                          Waldorf salad made with pear and apple chunks and topped with grated cheese

                                                                                                          toasted cheese sandwich

                                                                                                          roasted asparagus

                                                                                                          1. caramelized onions
                                                                                                            corn on the cob microwaved before shucking. Nothing on it.
                                                                                                            just-picked apples (other than Delicious)

                                                                                                            1. 1. Sliced sharp cheddar and Fritos
                                                                                                              2. Hickory Farms Beef Stick and cheddar with mayo on white bread
                                                                                                              3. My dad's smoked salmon with Jack Daniels, brown sugar, and soy sauce marinade
                                                                                                              4. Homemade shortbread
                                                                                                              5. Campbell's Bean with Bacon soup, sub milk for water

                                                                                                              1. Boiled cassava with melted butter.

                                                                                                                1. 1.) Garlic bread. Even bad frozen garlic bread.
                                                                                                                  2.) this one might raise an eyebrow or two, but it s from my childhood.....Campbell's Chicken and Stars soup and a bologna sandwich. Cut the sandwich into little bite-size squares, smoosh them so they don't fall apart, and drop them into the soup. Repeat. A rare occurrence now....
                                                                                                                  3.) Wasa light rye crispbread (or good seedless rye bread) with a smear of butter and some rolled-up ham.

                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                  1. re: kebyar

                                                                                                                    Garlic bread

                                                                                                                    That was one of my favor too.

                                                                                                                    Campbell's Chicken and Stars soup and a bologna sandwich

                                                                                                                    Agree with the Campbell's Chicken Stars soup -- I remember it very fondly from my childhood too.

                                                                                                                  2. high quality vanilla ice cream
                                                                                                                    bialy toasted with a little bit of butter
                                                                                                                    crisp apple slices with good cheese

                                                                                                                    1. Bananas, w/ home made Greek yogurt topped w/ raw rolled oats. My, hungry snack.

                                                                                                                      1. A slice from a fresh baguette, spread with soft fresh butter, topped with slices of crispy fresh radish, sprinkled with sea salt. Mmmmmmmm.....

                                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: bards4

                                                                                                                          Oh this sounds wonderful. I've recently rediscovered radishes, and I sometimes even eat them at breakfast. Which you could do as above.

                                                                                                                          1. re: sueatmo

                                                                                                                            I've had it for breakfast, for lunch, for dinner, for a snack. :o)
                                                                                                                            Whenever I can get really fresh radishes. Enjoy!

                                                                                                                          1. A little hunk of very sharp cheddar. Mmmmmm...

                                                                                                                            1. I like almost any kind of cooked pasta served hot with butter, garlic powder and fresh grated parmesan or romano cheese.

                                                                                                                              And for the cold side - very thinly sliced cucumber in a bowl with red wine or balsamic vinegar, salt and lots of fresh ground black pepper. I'll even sip the last of the vinegar out of the bowl after the cucumbers are gone.

                                                                                                                              And after Thanksgiving... a sandwich made with toasted, well buttered bread with pieces of cold leftover turkey, salt and LOTS of fresh ground black pepper.

                                                                                                                              1. A perfect, juicy, South Carolina peach at the peak of the season in the summer

                                                                                                                                Tomato, basil, mozzerella, cracked pepper, sea salt, and olive oil when all of those ingredients are top quality and at their peak