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What's for Dinner #219 - the pre-Memorial Day Weekend Edition [OLD]

It's been a long week - and it's only Wednesday! Hopefully some good cooking is going on in your houses.

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  1. My long holiday weekend starts tomorrow evening (thankfully!) as I took Friday off from work (thankfully!). I need a break from things there, even if I'm not going anywhere this weekend, except for driving Mom around to look at new couches.

    I'm inordinately tired, so no cooking for me - and I still have some fridge clean out to do - so it's a Bits and Bobs dinner:

    2 small slices of beef tenderloin
    2 small slices of roast chicken (with a bit of gravy)
    a scoop of mashed potatoes
    a heaping spoonful of peas

    That should tide me over. I hope I'm up for cooking tomorrow - I've taken something out of the freezer, so I'd better be!

    5 Replies
    1. re: LindaWhit

      Hope the tired is just an unusual thing and doesn't turn into a bug :/ Your bits and bobs sound pretty good!

      1. re: LindaWhit

        Your bits/bobs dinner sounds like a gourmet meal to me!! Yummy.

        1. re: LindaWhit

          Agreed Linda, your bits & bobs sound plenty good. Nothing worse than coming home exhausted and hungry without a plan or anything appealing to eat so you're in good shape tonight.

          Tomorrow, regardless of whether you have a desire to cook, I hope you have the strength to pour a glass or three of wine to celebrate Long Weekend's Eve!!
          ; - )

          1. re: Breadcrumbs

            Never fear, Bc. The pour will happen. :-D

            1. re: Breadcrumbs

              Agreed +2

          2. Woot! Hope mine turns out good---the occasion? mangator will arrive home in a timely manner. He's spent a lot of hours learning some stuff for his new job, and finally feels more relaxed now.
            So, the smažený sýr that didn't happen last night happens tonight. Boiled taters with dill and cucumber salad on the side.
            If you missed what the heck this stuff is, here is a link.http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sma%C5%B...
            Odd dinner for a hot day, but with the AC cranked, I'm ready to roll!

            9 Replies
            1. re: alliegator

              Ooh, I'd like to have me some of that cheese allie...sounds outstanding!!!

              1. re: alliegator

                <------ Still jealous.

                1. re: weezieduzzit

                  Also still jealous too.

                2. re: alliegator

                  Such a yummy-sounding meal!

                  1. re: alliegator

                    Thanks everyone!
                    A picture:

                     
                    1. re: alliegator

                      holy cow that looks delicious!! and such a nice combo.

                      1. re: alliegator

                        I could eat that with careless abandon. Cheese is one of my favorite foods

                        1. re: suzigirl

                          You and Gretchen s really should give it a try. Just cheese, flour, egg, breadcrumbs. It's all over in 10 minutes and you have a plate of ooey gooey goodness!!

                        2. re: alliegator

                          totally drooling.

                      2. Burgers.

                        Burgers are on the menu tonight. All the usual suspects: house-ground meat, white American cheese, caramelized onions, potato rolls. Beer for me, wine for Deb.

                        Yankees will be on the plasma. There's a Junior's Cheesecake that's been sitting in the coolerator for a few days now. I keep threatening but have yet to pull the trigger. This will change.

                        34 Replies
                        1. re: steve h.

                          :::looking imploringly at steve h.:::: Oh, steve....would you please make a burger for me, too? That sounds so good.

                          And EAT THE CHEESECAKE!!! :-P

                          1. re: LindaWhit

                            Medium or medium rare?

                            Oh yeah, I'm diving into Brooklyn's best export tonight come hell or high water.

                            1. re: steve h.

                              Although I am full to the brim from my dinner and this question was directed to LW not me, I still probably could manage to find room for one of ya'lls gourmet burgers cooked Medium with carmelized onions, please. :-)

                              1. re: littleflower

                                No worries.

                                Beer or wine?

                                1. re: steve h.

                                  Your wife has good taste. I will concur with her and go with a glass of wine. LOL sometimes wish that all of us on this board were in some sort of alternate universe where the possibility of sending food near instantaneously was indeed a reality. Anyways, ya'll enjoy your meal!

                                  1. re: littleflower

                                    Thanks. House red is a Sangiovese.

                              2. re: steve h.

                                I defer to chef's choice on the doneness. :-)

                                And I didn't say swim in the cheesecake! Besides, Deb won't want to deal with the cleanup.

                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                  Medium rare. More on the rare side.

                                  1. re: steve h.

                                    *Stands in line holding plate and fork*

                                    1. re: weezieduzzit

                                      too kind.

                                    2. re: steve h.

                                      yes please.

                                  2. re: steve h.

                                    I've lived in NYC for over 10 years and had never had Junior's cheesecake until recently, when someone brought one to a potluck. How good can it be, I thought? OMFG. Some of the best cheesecake I've ever had - I made an absolute glutton of myself. Enjoy!

                                    1. re: biondanonima

                                      Not sure if you or anyone else on this board watches QVC (I watch In the Kitchen with David sometimes on Wedneday nights and Sunday afternoons). You can buy Junior's cheesecakes (oftentimes in a sampler pack) and get them shipped right to your home.

                                      Here's the link: http://www.qvc.com/CatalogSearch?lang...

                                      .

                                      1. re: biondanonima

                                        Now I must get a slice... via hook or crook (or internet shameless hussy recipe) as God is my witness, I will eat Junior's cheesecake.

                                        Note to all; have had a cheesecake craving for several weeks I can't seem to shake; even thinking of cheesecake ice cream, which is an abomination, IMB).

                                        So, then, I shall go forth and find a recipe or order one. Information forthcoming. Thanks for caring:)

                                  3. re: steve h.

                                    I sense a theme here so far on this thread - what seems to be the ordinary (leftovers a la LW and burgers by you) somehow by creativity from those on this board you're turning them into a proper meal with style. What kind of Junior's cheesecake do you all have - a traditional NY style?

                                    1. re: littleflower

                                      Yep.

                                    2. re: steve h.

                                      Ummmm, I so wish I had a local source for potato rolls...or a neighbour that loved to bake!! ; )

                                      Your meal sounds terrific steve!

                                      1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                        Thanks. It worked.

                                      2. re: steve h.

                                        I really want a burger now too. I was spoiled in the UK being able to buy Heston Blumenthal burgers in our local Waitrose, they were amazing.

                                        What cut of beef do you use Steve? My husband is bringing the grinder attachment to my UK kitchenaid over for my US one (I'm assuming they are compatible?) so my plan is to develop my own house-ground burgers too!

                                        1. re: helen_m

                                          Fat is key. State-side, a chuck will always work by itself. Chuck, brisket, short rib at a 3:1:1 ratio is killer.

                                          I know you'll adjust the grind to your tastes but you have a pretty good starting point here.

                                          1. re: steve h.

                                            Thank you! I agree that fat is key. I'll let you know how it goes.

                                        2. re: steve h.

                                          Steve, I'm 20 minutes from Tropicana field and Yanks will take their whuppin' right in from of me.....
                                          Smoked sweetbreads with chimichurri and nice local corn on the menu.

                                          1. re: Veggo

                                            smoked sweetbreads! wowza.... where does one get their own sweetbreads? perfect combo too, with the chimichurri...

                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                              At Bravo, a large Latin market in Bradenton.

                                              1. re: Veggo

                                                Where is Bravo at? I would like to go. I would love if you can supply me with the address. Thanks in advance

                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                  2004 Tamiami Trail.

                                                  1. re: Veggo

                                                    Thank you. I can't wait to check it out. And it will be easy to find.

                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                      I went there a few years ago when they first opened. I had forgotten all about it. The prices and selection were really, really good but it was an hour drive for me with stop start traffic. I guess I just forgot about it because the traffic was a pain. I need to suck it up and get back there with a plan instead of going to check out a new market on a whim like I did the first time.

                                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                                        Indeed. It took the Rays 3 tries, but we beat the Yankees this afternoon! Corn and crab cakes soon.

                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                          My man was very excited about that.

                                              2. re: Veggo

                                                You're taking dinner to the game?????

                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                  Tailgating, grilling, and beer are encouraged at the Ray's lots. 4 in the vehicle and parking is free, with abundant Porto-Lets. 72 degrees in the stadium.

                                                  1. re: Veggo

                                                    Excellent.

                                                    You and the dozen or so other fans in attendance will face a decimated Yankees squad. No quarter!

                                                    1. re: Veggo

                                                      I guess I never heard of tailgaiting at a baseball game. Just checked and that game is tomorrow night so hoping you don't camp in the parking lot :)

                                              3. Fresh Market has a sale on Italian Sausages which we love this week, so that was the inspiration for tonight's pasta dinner. Sauteed onions until translucent as well as sliced red peppers, then threw in a couple of anchovies to melt down. Crushed garlic was then added to the pan for about a minute, then deglaced pan with rose' wine (usually we add white wine but wanted to see if the flavor profile would be different with rose'). Reduced sauce then added two rather nice looking peeled/seeded then chopped tomatoes to the pan, along with sliced Italian Sausages that were shy of being done by about 5 minutes. Cooked for 5 minutes to allow for ingredients to meld together, then spaghetti was added to the pan along with a few splashes of pasta water. I really liked the rose' wine in it along with the anchovies. Flavor umami.

                                                4 Replies
                                                1. re: littleflower

                                                  I love sausage pasta littleflower but I've never thought of using rosé ..what a great idea. Definitely something to keep under my hat, especially in the summer months when we tend to have rosé in the house.

                                                  Note to self: don't drink all the rosé !!!

                                                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                    Thanks, I really liked the rose' wine with the sausage...and the sauce it created combined with the pasta was incredible. Do try it and let me know what you think of it, and yes I know from experience it is hard to not drink all the rose'. :-)

                                                  2. re: littleflower

                                                    I like the idea of using rose too, perfect for sausage pasta I would think! I bought some rose vinegar recently and am converted, it's lovely.

                                                    1. re: helen_m

                                                      Thanks helen...it was perfect with the sausage and I will use it from now on instead of using white wine to deglaze the pan. I have never heard of rose' vinegar, I bet that too is great and would make an incredible vinaigrette!!

                                                  3. I knew well in advance that last night would be a late dinner due to work commitments so I roasted up some beets and steamed and shocked some snap peas and whisked up a dressing on Monday (a holiday here in the great white north) so all I needed to do last night was assemble and serve along w a Melton Mowbray pie that mr bc agreed to pick up.

                                                    The salad was great but the pie was a big disappointment. It's been a while since we've purchased one from that supermarket and it was so nasty I ended up calling them. Turns out they have a new (and crappy) supplier. Ah well, lesson learned. Thank goodness neither of us were starving...and as it turned out, it was a good excuse to eat ice cream afterwards!! ; )

                                                    Tonight I made an asparagus pesto from asparagus mr bc picked up at a local farm this afternoon. Whole wheat pasta is on the boil as I type and mr bc is shredding some roasted chicken I had in the freezer. It's after 8 and we're hungry...fingers crossed we have more success tonight.

                                                     
                                                     
                                                     
                                                    20 Replies
                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                      Asparagus pesto...do tell? What's your recipe?

                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                        I've winged it in the past but this time around I worked w a recipe I found in the local paper:

                                                        http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/f...

                                                        The changes I made were to roast my asparagus first (adding in some additional spears so I could reserve them and toss them in the finished pasta). I also used sliced almonds instead of the pine nuts since we're nervous about pine mouth.

                                                        I roasted using the instructions I'd provided in the prior WFD thread - approx 10 mins at 400°F tossing once.

                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                          Great, thanks. What a good idea!

                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                            Just in case it's of interest, I wanted to share another link. I subscribe to a wonderful magazine called Edible Toronto and the spring edition has a really interesting recipe for Roasted Asparagus Pesto that uses hazelnuts and hazelnut oil. I think it will be wonderful. I just Googled it and fortunately it's available online here:

                                                            http://edibletoronto.com/spring-2013/...

                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                              Bc, that sauce sounds amazing! I've often seen but never purchased hazelnut oil at places like Home Goods. I might just have to do so to try this out this weekend - sounds like tossing the pesto with pasta and maybe some sauteed chicken would be great - thanks for the link!

                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                My pleasure Linda. Do let us know if you do try it. I think it would be wonderful with chicken...and maybe some roasted red peppers for a little sweetness too.

                                                              2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                Is Edible Toronto a paid subscription? Edible produces local magazines for Manhattan and Brooklyn that one can get for free at many high end shops. But then there are stands I see which sell the magazine. Not quite sure how that business plan works.

                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                  Hi JM. Edible Toronto is available by paid subscription however, as you say, it is also available free at a variety of shops, markets and restaurants. My understanding was that the places where it's available for free are advertisers.

                                                                  I was finding that by the time I remembered to go and look for the magazine, the free supply had already disappeared and since I enjoy the magazine so much, I decided it would be better to simply subscribe to it and ensure I rec'd a copy.

                                                                  Speaking of Edible Brooklyn, I don't know if you've seen it but they produced an absolutely wonderful cookbook. It happened to be available on a discount table at a local book shop and since our climates and growing seasons are similar, I decided to purchase the book. I have to say, it's a real gem.

                                                                  1. re: JungMann

                                                                    We have Edible Reno-Tahoe and I pick it up at WF and our local co-op.

                                                          2. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                            I haven't heard of a Melton Mowbray pie...what does it consist of?

                                                            1. re: littleflower

                                                              Melton Mowbray is a region in England and they are most famous for their spiced pork pies. So special are these pies that the folks in MM have rec'd an EU PGI designation much like that for Balsamic vinegar or Parmesan cheese. Of course they also have their own association.

                                                              You can read all about them and their pies here:

                                                              http://www.mmppa.co.uk/

                                                              1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                Interesting, thank you! I enjoy learning so much about food from everyone on this board.

                                                                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                  Without wishing to be overly pedantic, but Melton Mowbray is a small village, rather than a region - although the PGI does permot a slightly wider designated area for production. The region of England that it's in is the East Midlands.

                                                                  I think there is only one producer that is actually in Melton - that's Dickinson & Morris which is, without question, the best known of them, as it supplies to most supermarket chains.

                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                    Thanks harters, much appreciated. Region was a poor choice of words.

                                                                    Interestingly there was a tv segment about this that aired here in Canada on the Food Network and they were interviewing a pie maker that lived just outside the village and he wasn't at all happy about the PGI designation because it prevented him from using the Melton Mowbray name yet it seemed to be widely recognized that his pies were prepared in a way that was most closely aligned with traditional practices and were superior to those produced in the village. I did get the impression this was small batch production.

                                                                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                      The pork pie, as the style made in Melton Mowbray, is made across the UK. Much of it on an industrial basis. But also craft production on a smaller basis.

                                                                      PGI status can lead to anomalies. Stichelton cheese looks like a Stilton, tastes like a Stilton and is made in the designated area for Stilton production - but it uses unpasteurised milk so cannopt be called a Stilton. Newcastle Brown Ale used to hold PGI status. Buit then it wanted to move its brewery out of the city to the other side of the River Tyne into Gateshead. It could no longer have the PGI and had to apply to have it cancelled.

                                                                      Here's a list of the UK foods holding one of the protected status designations - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_...

                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                        Fascinating harters! I had no idea there were so many UK foods holding that designation. Thanks for that link!

                                                                        1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                          It's not a guarantee of quality though, only of production standards. For example, Beacon Fell is the only Lancashire cheese with a designation, yet it wouldnt make my Top 5 of the county's cheeses

                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                            Perhaps more of a marketing tool then harters? It does create a sense of exclusivity.

                                                                            It reminds me of an article I read about mass produced deli meat products that tasted pretty horrible and were likely full of chemicals. When the products were re-branded with a fabricated name (something like Herrington Brook Farm Heritage Collection) folks perceived them to taste better and indicated they were significantly more likely to purchase them or recommend them to a friend. Funny that!

                                                                            1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                              The best Brit example of good marketing is the humble pilchard. A century ago, it was the mainstay of the fishing industry in south west England. Thousands of tons were landed each year and they were available fresh or tinned.

                                                                              And then they fell out of fashion. Almost completely by about 1990. Then someone struck on a great rebranding idea. And the "Cornish sardine" was born. And very popular it's become.

                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                That's a great story harters. Genius!

                                                            2. Lots to do before my day is over (the down side of being self employed....) and the man is working late to finish up something so it's a good night for something simple like ground turkey tacos (with lots of blended chipotles in adobo.) I can have it as a salad and heat up it up with shells for him whenever it is he gets here.

                                                              12 Replies
                                                              1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                Smart thinking about the ground turkey tacos...they are a great option for a make ahead and heat up whenever type of dish!

                                                                1. re: littleflower

                                                                  I love ground turkey for tacos!

                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                    I love tacos in general...and especially adored ground beef tacos but ever since I have been unable to digest beef well, have not had those in over 7 years. I tried ground tacos once, but was disappointed because I actually missed the fat juices (sorry, not sure what else to call it) that were rendered from the ground beef. I found the ground turkey tacos dry, and I used a ground turkey mix that had dark meat turkey in it as well.

                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                      i too find ground turkey dry. knew someone once who used to make enchiladas with them, and they were always terribly dry.

                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                        I know this is pretty out of the ordinary to do, but I am even considering buying a small amount of grass fed ground beef for the sole purpose of rendering the fat out into the pan, and then sauteeing the ground turkey in that to mimic the taste and fat from ground beef tacos. I could just give the ground beef left to someone else who could repurpose it.

                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                          Not crazy, sounds like a good idea. The fat alone doesn't give you tummy issues? I'll take the ground beef. I can throw some hot sauce and cheese on it and have a great lunch

                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                            Strangely no...it's the ground beef itself that my stomach has a hard time working on apparently. LOL at the "i'll take the ground beef"...you are so lucky that you can eat it with no problems and don't have to resort to making "faux" ground beef tacos. :-)

                                                                            1. re: littleflower

                                                                              Yea, that's unfortunate but your idea is quite creative.

                                                                      2. re: littleflower

                                                                        I added coconut oil to the ground turkey, I always do so it isn't dry. Shoulda mentioned that!

                                                                        I'd give it a shot with beef tallow, why not?

                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                          I usually use ground turkey for tacos and burritos and do the following to keep the moist. Saute the meat with onions in oil or bacon fat until cooked. Add a little more fat along with spices and cook for a few more minutes. Then add about a cup of water and simmer slowly until the water is almost all gone but the meat is not dried out. The meat ends up very flavorful and not dry, IME.

                                                                          1. re: tcamp

                                                                            I use water as well or broth. I actually like ground turkey, even the breast.

                                                                            1. re: tcamp

                                                                              Thanks for the tip...I may try also adding onions/oil along with water to see if that makes a difference.

                                                                    2. Today has been the looonngeesstt day in quite a while! I wanted to run by Whole Foods to inquire about the incoming fish and produce for the weekend and while I was there I went a little nutso at the Mediterranean bar. I didn't bother with a plate and assembled my containers on a serving tray and headed to the couch with my feet propped up. "Dinner" was fantastic and consisted of marinated mushrooms, herb and olive oil bocconcini, and marinated roasted tomatoes alongside a random leftover grilled chicken breast in the fridge. SO must have had a bad day as well as I came home to find him on the couch with a huge bin of cashews. I might have to convince him to share. We decided tonight would be snack night and just nibble around the house. I do enjoy a proper dinner, but these nights can be just as good.

                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                        Hope tomorrow is a little easier of a day for you! Nibblers as we like to call it often end up being some of the best dinners...and like the sound of those marinated roasted tomatoes!!

                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                          Yes, today is off to a much better start and I'm looking ahead to Friday and a nice long 4 day weekend :) The marinated tomatoes are addicting although I think I love the mushrooms more, I have to remember to chew they are so good I just want to inhale them.

                                                                        2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                          Your snack nights sound a lot healthier than mine!

                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                            A nibbler dinner is a good dinner in my book, and the one you created sounds fab!

                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                              The nibble dinner was great and extended deep into the current cheese supply, as it should...don't want it to go bad before it's eaten right?

                                                                            2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                              LOL, I know it has been a BAD day when I find DH on the couch with a tub of nuts. Usually there is also an IPA nearby.

                                                                              1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                Very true, there was a glass of scotch to be had later.

                                                                            3. Day 4 of the green goddess dressing and I have 2 research findings to report: to my palate it tasted no different than day 1, and it works really well with bacon in the salad. :) And it is all gone. :(

                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                              1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                I love to hear all the reports on this dressing. I eat a lot of salads and am always looking for a new dressing. I should give this a try as I haven't read anything negative about it yet :)

                                                                              2. I made a great "faux pho" dinNer, lol. I call it faux pho because it is veg heavy and low carb (no noodles). Asian style homemade chicken broth, extra grated ginger, ground chicken with jalapeño pepper slices and sesame oil, sliced scallions, baby bok choy, mushrooms and sliced celery. Served with lime, Thai basil and crunchy bean sprouts as you like. Really great and I have a request to serve it again tomorrow :)
                                                                                My accompaniments were two dips, pickled ginger, daikon and chip plate. Dry Riesling. Dessert was that clementine almond flour cake by nigella Lawson and some toasted green tea.

                                                                                 
                                                                                7 Replies
                                                                                1. re: sedimental

                                                                                  Hey, that is the wrong photo! I am not very good at this. Let me try again...trying to show you my faux pho with no noodles :)

                                                                                   
                                                                                  1. re: sedimental

                                                                                    Looks and sounds yummy! And the bowl is perfect for it...

                                                                                    1. re: sedimental

                                                                                      Yum, that looks delicious.

                                                                                      1. re: sedimental

                                                                                        Looks quite good! And no worries about the pic thing, I once had a shoe on here until someone took it down!

                                                                                        1. re: alliegator

                                                                                          That's funny! For some reason it was only letting me upload one photo at a time. Maybe just a glitch yesterday.

                                                                                      2. re: sedimental

                                                                                        I've never heard of toasted green tea...I like green tea and would like to try this as well. Where can one find it?

                                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                                          It is genmai-cha, a Japanese roasted brown rice green tea. I got mine at an Asian food mart.
                                                                                          It is really good with cake type desserts :)

                                                                                      3. Tonight featured small filet mignons rubbed with penzey's Cajun spice, roasted Brussel sprouts with diced pancetta and roasted cauliflower. Also roasted a Dijon salmon fillet that I turned into a salmon salad/spread -- mixed with finely diced shallots, capers and a dab of greek yogurt. To be thickly spread on rye toast in the morning.

                                                                                        5 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: MAH

                                                                                          :::Sigh:::: Everyone's dinners sound so much better than mine. I'm not even sure I'm going to like tonight's dinner. Just don't have the energy to think of anything imaginative. Oh well. It's sustenance.

                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                            But you'll be on vacation!

                                                                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                              Well, I'll have a day off. "Vacation" is going somewhere else. At least in my mind. And going up to Mom's to take her couch shopping isn't what I mean. :-)

                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                Aha! the dreaded couch shopping activity! This can take years. Have you been to Gardner?

                                                                                                1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                  I haven't, but also couldn't take Mom there - she's almost 83. Can't deal with the in and out of the car and all of the walking around. She's been to Bob's Furniture; we'll hit up Jordan's and Bernie & Phyl's and she'll pick from there. :-) I actually think a version of the couch I'll be getting will work for her, size-wise.

                                                                                        2. Tonight we are providing most of the dinner to my son's crew team end of season party. The woman who coaches the team is a 4'10" tyrant. She a lovely young woman, passionate about her sport, but should have been a Sergeant in the Marines. Usually, the "party" consists of a Triathalon -- 6k run, 6k row, 6k erg. How's that for fun? Due to the forecast of bad weather later this afternoon, the party has been moved to the school gym. I'm happy that the venue has been changed since my son has been out most of the season with an injury, and he will be less tempted to overdo if they're not on the water or running on land. We should get the results of his MRI today, so we will get a better idea of what he can and can not do.

                                                                                          We are providing ribs, pulled pork, chicken and chocolate chip cookies. My husband will be tending the BBQ today, and taking a day off work to provide the food. Maybe he'll stick a salmon in there too. Other parents bring their specialties as well, and last year, the mother of one of the boys, brought the most delicious homemade samosas. I'm hoping she brings them again, but maybe not! I could eat all of them! Many of the parents buy food, so what's available is a pretty eclectic mix, so what exactly is for dinner is somewhat up in the air!

                                                                                          27 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                                                            I hope the results of your son's MRI are good new today! I can't imaging cooking for an entire crew team...they can eat quite a bit :) Your contributions sound delicious.

                                                                                            1. re: roxlet

                                                                                              Whoa. A triathlon will make anyone hungry, let alone teenage boys!!!

                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                Well, because of the iffy weather, it's a run and erging, so no triathlon today, but they still will be hungry! We're going a little later than last year since the parents wound up eating all the salmon before the kids finished their event!

                                                                                              2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                Roxlet, I hope you don't take this the wrong way but you remind me so much of my mom :) She was always the one feeding my brother and all of his friends, and then later on feeding me and my friends, guys and girls, after track practice. Our house was the place to be because of my mom, and I always appreciated it. I'm sure your son does to :)

                                                                                                1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                  I think my husband reminds you of your mom, lol! I just made cookies!

                                                                                                  1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                    Well all she ever actually made was stuff like kraft macaroni and cheese, but the willingness to have your home open is awesome! None of my other friends parents were like that.

                                                                                                    1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                      It was at the school this time, and it's so interesting to see what "sells." The few short ribs he made disappeared instantly. The salmon got inhaled, they finished most of the pulled pork, but we have a fair number of ribs and quite a few pieces of chicken left over. Everything was delicious, and much appreciated. Since my son was injured, he missed all the regattas this season, so we never got a chance to cook for the team this year. What a fine bunch of kids, and they adore each other. I keep on saying that it's not a team, it's a cult.

                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                        Cult = best of kind of team :) particularly for sports. Some of my best memories are with sports teams. It's a shame that many kids never have that experience.

                                                                                                2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                  rox, your son sounds like such an athlete -- crew, squash -- it must be very hard for him not to be able to participate. hope the mri brings good news.

                                                                                                  your food sounds fabulous and will no doubt be inhaled by the hungry triathletes!

                                                                                                  1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                    Yes, I am very proud of him. He is really more of a squash player, and he is currently the #1 ranked American HS Junior. Plus he just got 800 on his chem SAT2, so I hope you don't mind my bragging!

                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                      Wow. You've done an awesome job with him, roxlet!

                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                        wow, rox, that is just fantastic! no wonder you are visiting Harvard!! and anyone would be bragging!!!

                                                                                                        1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                          Wait - what did I miss - you're coming up to our neck of the woods, rox???

                                                                                                        2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                          Woo hoo! Congrats on his squash ranking! And DOUBLE congrats on his SAT!

                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                            Awesome on all counts with that kid - you have every right to be super-proud!

                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                              You raised a wonderful son there it sounds like...how well-rounded is he!! Excellent in sports AND school...not many can say that. Good luck to him on his college search...what an exciting time for you and your family! I am sure he will have no trouble getting into the college of his choice!!

                                                                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                And musical too. He's doing Scott Joplin and Rachmaninoff right now on the piano, and touring Hawaii with his school Glee Club in June. Get this: his Glee Club director is Don Ho's nephew! Anyway, I told him to eat poke but skip the poi. Linda, we're going to a Harvard tour (I posted it on the Boston board asking for restaurant recs).

                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                  Wow, you are indeed quite lucky! There are a few great restaurants around Harvard. I spent a few summers there but of course it was so long ago that I can't remember any of them. There was also a very good ice cream place as well. which I'm sure someone on the Boston board will hit on. As an alumna of an Ivy league a little bit more South I think you're wonderful son should make a trip to the fabulous Garden State :)

                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                    Yes, he's been there and done that too. Likes it very much.

                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                      The ice cream place is Christina's. WONDERFUL ice cream!

                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                        Duly noted!

                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                          I'm firmly in the Toscanini's ice cream camp. Closer to MIT but I love the big communal table and, if on the board, the Aztec Chocolate rocks! You can also get a teeny micro sundae that is WW friendly. Or a cup of excellent coffee if you want to go no points.

                                                                                                                    2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                      Outstanding! Admittedly, a slight regret of mine was begging my parents at the age of 11 to stop taking piano lessons. I had played for seven years since I was four, and piano came easy for me to learn with my long piano fingers. :-) Lately I have seriously reconsidered taking piano back up again...SO wish that the upright grand piano I practiced on had not been sold by my parents a few years back. Good idea on telling him to skip the poi...I heard that is definitely an acquired taste. :-)

                                                                                                                  2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                    Roxlet, that is great. I have a HS freshman on my hands who is still finding his way so your son's accomplishments are doubly impressive in my eyes!!

                                                                                                                2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                  Another successful Whole Hog Production. Ribs, chicken, short ribs. Not shown: salmon & pork shoulder, aka swine.

                                                                                                                  Feeding teenage athletes is a blast. And these are really nice kids.

                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                  1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                    rjbh, can I just say I'm glad you joined the WFD crowd? I'm wicked envious of roxlet having such good food all the time, but I do enjoy the pictures of your beautiful plating and your Whole Hog Production stills. :-)

                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                      Why, thank you.

                                                                                                                3. Tonight is my turn for a "house ground" hamburger, grilled up outside. My burgers are a combo of chuck and bacon ground together. I might add cheese. I'll also have some sweet potato fries and I think I have some asparagus stalks leftover in the fridge, so I'll grill those up too.

                                                                                                                  I just had a cheeseburger for lunch yesterday but hamburgers are one of my favorite foods, so I'm indulging this week. Might have another one tomorrow too!

                                                                                                                  4 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                    You're allowed - after all, it IS your birthday week/month! :-)

                                                                                                                    Your house ground sounds wonderful!

                                                                                                                    1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                      You had my attention at the mere mention of house ground chuck then you went ahead and threw in the bacon to make those burgers sound outrageously good!! Yummy yummy!

                                                                                                                      1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                        Don't you just want one?

                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                          One or two of those burgers and I'd be a happy camper. I love a good burger.

                                                                                                                    2. There's good news on the mother-in-law front - she's being discharged from hospital sometime today, so everyone will be able to fly home tomorrow night (a time which cannot come soon enough for my beloved)

                                                                                                                      As for dinner, I discovered a bag labelled "fesenjan sauce" in the freezer. I remember making far too much sauce last time we had fesenjan and froze it. I'm going to fry off a couple of chicken thighs (boneless & skinless - it's all they had) and finish them off in the sauce.

                                                                                                                      Bulghur pilaff as the carb. The five-a-day contribution coming from opening a jar of torshi.

                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                        Glad to hear MIL is doing well enough to fly home!

                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                          fesenjan! nice find! good about the MIL, i'm sure Mrs. H is relieved.

                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                            ... a time which cannot come soon enough for your beloved -- or for you? :)

                                                                                                                            had to google torshi -- all pickles are good in my book.

                                                                                                                          2. I think tonight my seafood bonanza will start with skewered and grilled shrimp. Undecided on the marinade. Not sure of the side, but I'm going to look through the salad options on Chow and try something new.
                                                                                                                            I'm finally getting a little excited for my trip to Hawaii next week (bro's wedding--the whole fam, ugh), and figured I'd better spread out my seafoodfest so I don't spoil my appetite for it before I go.

                                                                                                                            30 Replies
                                                                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                              I look forward to the rewind on what you do with the grilled shrimp. Hawaii is amazing! Which island are you going to? I've only been once but it was the best vacation by far in my category of the relaxing vacations vs. the European style run-around and see it all vacatins.

                                                                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                Thanks! I've never been to Hawaii before but your great opinion gives me hope I can take a few moment to just enjoy. I'll only be there for 3 full days. Mangator is new at his job, and I don't like to task him with coming home at lunch to take the dogs out, etc...
                                                                                                                                I'll be in Honolulu at a big resort where the wedding takes place. I did some research and with the wedding event schedule I have (urgh) I see a few opportunities for my grandfather and I to grab a cab and taste some local edible goodness!

                                                                                                                              2. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                Wow, Hawai'i!!! *Jealous*.

                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                  Ahhh, lingua... don't be. It's a trip of necessity. My brother's last wedding was a fiasco and the whole fam together is no bueno. But the local food will save me.
                                                                                                                                  Mangator promised to take me back when he has some vacay time.

                                                                                                                                  1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                    The local food, lots of booze, and the pretty surroundings will hopefully make up for the rest :-)

                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                      I hold high hopes for the food and booze. It takes a lot to make up for an empire waist pink chiffon maxi gown O_o

                                                                                                                                      1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                        Pics or we don't believe you.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                          I'll try to get one with food in so I'm not banned for life!! I can have the reception dinner photographed with me holding it. That'll do!
                                                                                                                                          It's what's for dinner for me on 6/1.

                                                                                                                                        2. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                          Why must the bride make the dresses so cruel? My heart goes out you.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                            No kidding. And you can taste the Hawaiian rainbow, we're all different pastel colors :D
                                                                                                                                            At least the menu looks good, and open bar will take my pink blues away.

                                                                                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                              Drink up. The dress will look better the more glasses you tip. :-)

                                                                                                                                          2. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                            oy vey!

                                                                                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                              Oh my on the dress. But yes - we want a pic - of diner and dress! :-)

                                                                                                                                              1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                Ugh, I'm having flashbacks to 1989 when both my sister and best friend got married and I found myself the owner of not one but two floral Laura Ashley dresses - pastel colors, puffy sleeves, butt bows, just awful. At least they're both still married to original grooms so no sartorial repeats.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                  allie, it all sounds so awful it seems almost certain you will have tales to eat out on for the rest of your life! and we REALLY want to see the picture of that dress, i mean dinner.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                    Don't worry, I'll really try to get a great pic of that dinner for ya! If I can share my Papa Murphy's disaster, I can certainly humiliate myself further.
                                                                                                                                                    It's too much for me to hope security won't let my dress through for extreme ugliness.
                                                                                                                                                    But I'll be having the lobster---sure to be lovely :p

                                                                                                                                              2. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                LOL @ "last wedding". Sorry :) At least it's beautiful surroundings... nothing worse than going to a dysfunctional wedding in some hellhole hotel ballroom in some non-descript city.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                  <<a dysfunctional wedding in some hellhole hotel ballroom in some non-descript city>>

                                                                                                                                                  Unfortunately, I know this scenario all too well. The one I went to didn't even have any booze because the groom's family were alcoholics and the bride was pregnant. Just minuscule glasses of Arbor Mist for the toasts. The first and only time I've ever tried Arbor Mist, and definitely the last.

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                    That's what flasks are for BBL. Met one of my good friends at a dry wedding, we were both hiding out in the bathroom to get away from it all and she had a flask of Jagermeister in her purse.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                      I know for next time!

                                                                                                                                                    2. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                      Yup, one of my friend's first weddings was this huge expensive affair at her parents country club, which was picturesque, but his family and friends didn't like her, and because of that, her family and friends didn't like him. The whole thing was depressing enough... then we all found out there was no alcohol, which we didn't know about ahead of time. Needless to say they were divorced a few years later.

                                                                                                                                                    3. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                      Yeah, the last wedding featured a horribly dry chicken entrée and a fight!

                                                                                                                                                2. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                  It's HAWAII! It'll be fun, no matter what!

                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                    Hawaii is great. I've been to Maui and Kauai, but only changed planes in Oahu.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                      I've got to say, you all have been to some rotten friggin' weddings! It makes me feel a lot better about what's to come. And it is Hawaii, so I should just relax a little.

                                                                                                                                                      Shrimp last night over the bbq and done with Italian marinade. Long grain and wild rice with parmesan underneath.

                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                        Wow, that looks wonderful!

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                          Those shrimp look mighty tasty

                                                                                                                                                          1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                            Thank you both!
                                                                                                                                                            Since we've had some wedding memories being discussed, I though I'd ask about everyone's worst reception dinner ever over here.
                                                                                                                                                            http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/903115

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                              This should get interesting. Cannot wait to read the stories

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                I can more provide some amazing awesome weddings, having been a diligent, thorough and tough catering /chef/consultant for a few years... but yes, there are a couple of bad moments to provide based on someone else's taking me to a 'wedding event'... will have to bring back the painful memories and splat them to you all....

                                                                                                                                                          2. Tonight! ....drum roll.... the morel shrooms I purchased on Tuesday (and de-antified for a seemingly endless time) are on the menu.

                                                                                                                                                            I'll likely sauté in a little bacon fat/butter mix with some shallots, add some red wine & crème fraîche and serve with big fat pappardelle. I'd love to get fresh, but that might not work out.

                                                                                                                                                            So it might also be some other fresh pasta. Who cares. The shrooms are the star of tonight's dinner.

                                                                                                                                                            Bufflo mozz for starters with Sicilian olive oil, cracked pepper and basil chiffonnade. Maybe a veggie or salad on the side.

                                                                                                                                                            17 Replies
                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                              Sounds ah-mazing! You really know how to take one ingredient and run with it!

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                I really hope they're *all that*. They were expensive, and I'm still dealing with a little PTSD from the ant-o-cide :-D

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                  How do you think the ants felt? Lmao!

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                    Sleepy and peaceful as they went into the light...

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                      Shoulda learned how to swim.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                        They did not die in vain. Eat up that amazing meal tonight and the PTSD will be cured.

                                                                                                                                                                2. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                  I never find morels in the store here, I would love to get my hands on them and try them finally! You're dinner sounds outstanding!

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                    I actually ended up buying a package of dried morels (another whopping $8.99... but hey -- since we're splurging already, what the hell) to add to the fresh ones, as 1/4 lb. seemed a bit measly. Half of that is currently reconstituting. I'll likely use some of the liquor for the sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                    Saw some nice baby leaf lettuces and a herb salad, so those two will be combined with a nice walnut vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                                    Also managed to score fresh pappardelle, so there's molto happiness in the valley tonight.

                                                                                                                                                                    Looking forward to dinner time :-)

                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                      And I look forward to hearing about it later!

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                        What was that sound? Oh yeah, my stomach growling. Jealous

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                          It seems like my local Whole Foods has dried morels and I really might find it hard to resist tomorrow. I'm only familiar with grinding dried mushrooms for my favorite mushroom salt. Do you just plop them in water to rehydrate? How long? Any difference you notice between dried and fresh?

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, you reconstitute in warm water, until they are soft.

                                                                                                                                                                            Not sure if there was difference between dried and fresh, as I chopped 'em all up and ate them together.

                                                                                                                                                                            I'd say as tasty as it was (we hardly *ever* have pasta, so this was a rare treat), I can't say the fresh morels were worth the hefty price tag. Hen of the woods is so much more flavorful...

                                                                                                                                                                            I'll stick to dried morels from now on. No ants, either :-)

                                                                                                                                                                             
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                              I'm glad the mushrooms worked out for you this time. "Hen of the woods" is that the same as maitake? I tried them a few weeks ago and for some reason wasn't in to them although as my rule I should try them again - I try to give everything a second try.

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                Looks hearty and delicious. Sorry you had to deal with the ants, but looks like it was worth it just this one time.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                My WF (Reno) has fresh morels for $30/# which is less than some mail order at $50/#. But ya don't need a #. A chef friend gave me 4oz. and I cooked with them for a few days. My fave mushroom.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                  4 oz. of *fresh* morels, and you cooked with that for a few days?

                                                                                                                                                                                  Whoa.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                    I was VERY frugal :) A few sautéed in butter several times. He really blew my mind when he gave them to me.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. Mac-n-cheese-off today, in about an hour here at the office. Came home from the Oldster's late last night and, at 11:00 p.m., made my entry - manchego cheese with Spanish chorizo slices and pimenton dulce - it looked/smelled wonderful, i must say. the test is in the tasting, soon.... like i said last thread, i'm not hopeful of a win - last year's mac-off resulted in first place going to a woman who made hers with Velveeta! (i have to admit, hers was delicious.)

                                                                                                                                                                          18 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                            Those office food off things are fun. They had a chili one at mangator's work last year. Mine didn't go over well in Texas, it had beans. The boss had a renowned local chef do his :/ And the winner was some mouse-y, tiny HR girl. So ya just never know what people will pull out!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                              good luck mc, I bet yours is the best no matter who "wins"!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                No doubt, sounds delicious!

                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                Good luck, it sounds like a delicious mac and cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Frizzle

                                                                                                                                                                                  thanks all! the winner was, as anticipated - Velveeta Mac! of course. it WAS delicious. though truly, i did like mine best. (: hers second.

                                                                                                                                                                                  and allie - i lost the chili cook-off last year! with my own chili recipe that i won with years before. you just never know.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                    The event sounds pretty cool.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Next time: Sell tickets, serve wine. I'll supervise the voting ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                      That's really not a fair competition, comfort-food-like-grandma-used-to-make should be one class and more sophisticated inventive versions should be another class. Both are equally important but very different.

                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                        My grandma (or mom!) would never have made mac & cheese with Velveeta!

                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                        I would have picked yours. Anyone can melt velveeta

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                          awwww such nice supportive peeps....

                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                          Ahhh, geez. Velveeta? :-(

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                            That's what I think. My husband once requested velveeta mac and cheese and I was so alarmed by the fact that I could bounce the little cubes of it on the cutting board that I chucked it all and made it with real cheese.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                            I know how those cook-off's can go, MC - you likely deserved to win - but sometimes the 'judges' don't have enough taste to know the REAL awesome food when they try it! I bet your's was best in it's way - just different enough hard to take a win ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                            I would rather have yours than velveeta based, anyday!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gingershelley

                                                                                                                                                                                              Agree with GS on this one...they should ask one of us from this board who know good food when we see it (and taste it!) to be judges at these events. Those judges need to get their food cards taken away from them.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                they're lawyers, what do you want?

                                                                                                                                                                                                totally kidding. i know plenty of lawyers with very good palates.

                                                                                                                                                                                                i'm thinking people just love the extra oozy cheeziness more than the paprika-y, slightly spicy treat i gave them. yum. at least it all got eaten!

                                                                                                                                                                                        3. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                          Can't wait to hear how it went!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh how exciting!! Your version sounds outstanding mc...no doubt it would be my favourite!!

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                              Velveeta Mac and Cheese seems to always win Mac and Cheese taste tests. Yours sounds more interesting, for sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                            2. It is going to be crappy grilling weather for awhile (rain rain rain) so I think I will take the opportunity to eat down the freezer for a few days. I want to order some of that beef mcw told us about so I really need to make some room anyway. Tonight I think will be konigsberger klopse, sitting in front of the Bruins-Ranger game. Go Bruins!

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Last night was a simple homemade pizza. Leftover coriander-mint pesto base topped with sauteed walla walla onions, asparagus, and fontina both chunked and grated. Some chive blossoms, sea salt, and a drizzle of olive oil after it came out. Tossed greens and a crisp pinot grigio to go with.

                                                                                                                                                                                                9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                                                                                                                                                                                                  sounds wonderful!

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                                                                                                                                                                                                    I love coriander-mint chutney with cheese. Your pizza sounds like taking it to the next level.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                                                                                                                                                                                                      yeah - simple! sounds fabulos. chive blossoms, ooooh...

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: eight_inch_pestle

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I love how fun and healthy this pizza sounds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Musie

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Was just shopping for dinner at a local stupid market. I think it will be some fried rice with Shrimp under 2 over easy.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          I must share this with you all.
                                                                                                                                                                                                          What happened to Dad?

                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: PHREDDY

                                                                                                                                                                                                            He lost the car in the divorce settlement.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I thought she had him rubbed out!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: PHREDDY

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Looks like he's been scraped off the car - perhaps scraped out of the marriage as well?

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Honestly LMAO...when I saw it, and had to post it here...dinner was pretty good tonight. It was a quick meal , due to a social commitment..

                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Tonight will be tamales! I've got some nice chunks of pork shoulder simmering on the stove with garlic, a few chopped serranos and a chunk of smoked pork fat. The pork will be shredded for the filling, the liquid will be used for the red chile sauce and the fat will be skimmed off the top and chilled to be used as the lard in the masa. I'll make more than enough red chile sauce for the filling so we have some for dipping as well. Cumin-garlic black beans and rice on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also, I tried one of my asparagus pickles today and after less than a week they are already fantastic! The green beans need a bit more time, as they were pickled raw (I blanched the asparagus, which sped things up quite a bit). Now I just have to get the ingredients together for caesars and we'll call it a party (possibly a party of one -- I'm doubtful that my boyfriend will be into a drink that contains clam juice).

                                                                                                                                                                                                          12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Mmm. I want that meal. Even a clam juice drink could be good. What is in the clam juice drink? I am curious. And good for you on the pickles. They sound great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Here's a link to the wiki on caesars : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caesar_%...

                                                                                                                                                                                                              It's basically a spicy bloody mary with clamato instead of tomato juice. I like mine with lots of horseradish and worcestershire. They're delicious, but I can usually only drink one or two before I get tomatoed out.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              We decided to go for rhubarb martinis tonight instead, since I had some rhubarb in the fridge that needed using (and the pickles will only be better in a couple weeks).

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                I have had more of those than I can count. I didn't know the name was Caesar. Good to know

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Awesome! I love the idea of using the skimmed fat in the masa... will have to try that sometime.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              I want to come for that dinner!

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gingershelley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                It was an idea borne out of not wanting to go to the store for lard. I'm not sure if I'll have enough just from the skimming, but I can supplement with butter if I have to.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                That is an amazing weeknight dinner. I've only made tamales once and they took the better part of an entire Sunday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  To be fair, it is my Sunday today. That said, I've only made tamales at home once before and they were something of a (delicious, but ugly) disaster. My dad bought me a tamale-making workshop for Christmas and I've been wanting to try out my new skills before I forget them all. Tonight just seemed like a good night.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    A friend made tamales for Christmas Eve a few years ago. They were great but she said "Never more." Too much work.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It is a lot of work but, honestly, I don't think it takes more effort than ravioli or potstickers or anything else that requires stuffing, especially if you already have some cooked meat for the filling. I started slow cooking the pork around 2:30 this afternoon, but once that was done, it only took about an hour to do the rest (make the chile sauce, make the masa, and assemble the tamales). For me, the hardest parts have been gauging the consistency of the masa (still not sure I got it quite right this time -- you're supposed to whip it until the masa is so light that it floats in a glass of water) and actually assembling the buggers so they don't fall apart (this I now accomplish by tying each tamale with a strip of corn husk). I'm thinking about preparing a ton of the masa dough for the freezer so I can pull it out and make a few tamales whenever I have a bit of leftover chili or shredded meat I want to stretch into a meal.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I usually settle for masa that is moist and has a rich flavor. Tamales always look so enticing, and the end up crumbly and plain. If it at least taste good, but is kind of dense, fine, I'll settle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        But when you get a tamal like you're making, one that is moist, rich and still light, that is when the magic happens. Wish I could join!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The worst are tamales that are not only crumbly and plain, but have almost no filling, so that all you have is a dry, tasteless shell that is a little bit orange in the middle.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I'm not sure that I got these quite as light as I want them to be (I may need to invest in some sort of electrical mixer -- I was doing this all by hand), but they were definitely moist, rich and flavourful (the lard had picked up a really nice taste from the garlic and serranos I cooked with the pork) and they were heading in the right direction for lightness. Fortunately, I could eat tamales every night, so I'll just have to keep trying 'til I get them perfect!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          BBK, I make them often for my football parties and agree with what you said. I make the roasted pork and sauce(s)the day before. I too wrap the tamales in corn husks. Sure, start to finish they take a long time (most of that is the time it takes for the pork to cook but one can be doing something else during that time) however the actual work time is not that long. I have made football party food that is far more time consuming.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Tonight we're going light...just salads for mr bc and I as we both had big lunches today.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Last night's whole wheat pasta with asparagus pesto and roasted asparagus didn't hold much visual appeal but it sure was yummy!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Clean out refrigerator night, so had to whip something together from bits and pieces. Had a half of a Costco rotisserie chicken leftover as well as some spaghetti leftover from last night's dinner, half an onion, half a tomato, and a little less than half of a jar of marinara sauce left. Turned all these lovely leftovers into a Chicken Cacciatore of sorts along with a hearty dose of red wine which the chicken/onion/tomato/marinara sauce simmered in.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Also had a couple of odd and end small pieces of TJ's Tuscan Pane bread leftover which were too small to use for a sandwich but perfect for a garlic bread of sorts. All of this was washed down with TJ's Villa Italia Blood Orange Soda.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Your pull together sounds great. Nice job.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks, suzigirl. As you can see, I had a little help from Costco and Trader Joe's in pulling this one together. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          But you pulled it together and it sounds great

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. FINALLY home. Cats fed, wine poured and clothes changed. Sheesh - trying to get out of work for an extra-long holiday weekend always takes longer than it should because of those last-minute "Ooh! Can you do this? Ooh! Can you do that too?" And Tuesday's catch-up ought to be not fun either.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dinner - Chicken thighs have been marinating in a combo of orange juice, honey, grated ginger, and teriyaki sauce. The chicken will be baked in the convection oven as it's way too muggy to turn on the oven. Marinade will be boiled and reduced to drizzle over the chicken. Leftover basmati rice and some steamed broccoli will be the sides.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And then there's that wine. Ahh, yes. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      12 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        That chicken sounds quite delicious. And of course the wine too. Maybe I'll klass up my burger tonight with a bud light.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          It is your birthday week after all!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Atta girl Linda...I knew you'd get your wine arm working and it sounds like you mustered up the energy to make a delicious sounding dinner too! Happy long weekend...and it's the best part, because you haven't used any up yet!! ; )

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Breadcrumbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Can't keep a good girl down, Bc. :-) AND several friends and I just set up a gathering tomorrow in the city, so I have something to look forward to (other than couch shopping with Mom! LOL)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Happy LONG weekend LW - and enjoy your dinner:)!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Enjoy your weekend!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                BTW Linda, out of necessity, I am trying out an english muffin for my burger bun tonight. The buns I had in the pantry were very very moldy. Thanks for the idea awhile back :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We have our burgers ALL THE TIME on English muffins. Love 'em.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yeah I think I'm a convert, it was really good and it didn't fall apart like buns sometimes do with my giant home ground patties. Plus it's less calories than a normal bun :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    At home, I love burgers that way. They ARE messy, which is why it's usually done at home. :-D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: juliejulez

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I love burgers on English Muffins too, but there's a place near us that makes fabulous burgers with griddled-toasted bread a la Louis Lunch in New Haven. They're very juicy burgers, and the bread that they use, which is fairly dense, holds up beautifully. I find most commercial buns to be too bready and somewhat mushy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Sounds great---I'll be stealing that chicken technique!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. I'm sick with a HORRIBLE summer cold - it came on quick and hit me like a ton of bricks last night. I like spice when I'm congested, so I grabbed some hot & sour soup from the Chinese takeout place across the street for lunch, and made cowboy beans (I am obsessed with these beans - pintos with a ton of bacon, garlic and pickled jalapenos) and chipotle steak from the COTM for dinner. Some type of Nyquil-type medication and a warm bed for dessert!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      11 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Those cowboy beans sound fantastic. I want a bowl of those. :-) Hope you feel better soon!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          sorry you're sick biondanomina - but those cowboy beans sound really good! i will have to replicate someday soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ahhh, so sorry to hear you're sick...take good care.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks too for the mention of hot & sour soup...it's been far too long since I've had some and I must rectify that.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I hope you feel better. SO seems to have a bit of the runny nose, scratchy throat blues as well. I am with you n the spicy food when you're congested. It's the first thing I turn to and usually has to be warm as well which makes hot and sour soup a perfect choice. I hope it cleared you right up...at least for a little while at least.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, I *hate* summer colds! Snuggling under a blanket just doesn't work in the summer. I hope it goes away quickly, biond!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ugh. Feel better!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Feel better soon!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks everyone. I am just now waiting for my Nyquil nightcap to take effect - I should be dead to the world in 30 minutes if all goes according to plan!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I LOVE cowboy beans. Make mine with hamburg and Bush canned beans plus whatever else appeals from the pantry.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Bottled barbeque sauce too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Feel better!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: biondanonima

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            hope you woke up fully cured!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. A busy long day juggling the food tour planning, a skype interview for another 'occasional' food job, and a stint working with my friend on spring recipes for her seasonal (all 4) cookbook.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            We made fontina and asparagus stuffed ravioli today, a roasted asparagus salad with pistachios, marinated red onion, shaved manchego, an orange vinaigrette.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My pee is very stinky after all the tasting today, and I want something plain for dinner!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            small (but thick) rib steak marinating in Worcestershire, red wine, garlic, onion flakes. That shall be grilled and served with a serving of sauteéd garlic spinach. Simple and straightforward. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh, and red wine, probably a couple big glasses!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gingershelley

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Your eats today are quite enticing! I think I eat asaragus at least every other day so feel like I live with permanent asparagus pee...lovely! I don't usually marinated a rib steak but you're marinade sounds great, light but flavorful and nothing to overwhelm the hearty flavor of the beef.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Tonight I am making piggy again. What can I say, I am on a rip and a tear with pork lately. Butterflied pork loin chops are going to beslathered with sun dried tomato pesto and draped with two slices of proscuito folded back together and breaded in flour, egg wash and panko mixed with parmesan and salt and pepper. Some of the traded leaf lettuce will be paired with yellow grape tomatoes and marinaded cucumbers. Yellow rice with some diced peppers, pimentoes and green olives. A nice glass of pino grigio to sip while I am cooking. This dinner cant get on the table fast enough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wow you sure are into the pork recently, which is awesome! I've only recently realized how great many of the cuts are although I have to force myself to branch out from tenderloin, it's so tasty. Your chops sound great. Since I love to make them into hockey pucks, any more specifics on how you plan to cook them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sure. I pan sear them in a cast iron pan and then put them in the oven for nine minutes exactly. Then they rest for five minutes so that the meat juices redistribute but the crust doesn't get soggy. I sound a bit OCD. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Nope, you sound like a well-designed recipe :) I've given up on them but maybe I'll keep trying. What temp? Since butterflied and folded back together I imagine they are like 1.5 inches thick?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Between medium and medium high on the stovetop and three fifty in the convection oven which means three seventy five in a regular oven I think. And yes, they are about two inches, not one and a half thick.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks you rock!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          on the stovetop just get the first side golden brown and when you flip it give it a minute or two in the pan to get a head start to the oven heat and residual heat in the pan.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      OCD is what non-foodies may call us. People on this board would refer to it as having a high culinary IQ. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Those stuffed pork chops sound delicious and you turned it up a few notches by including the prosciutto and then coating them in panko. Are you going to saute/fry them or bake them?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: littleflower

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Both. Read my response to fldhkybnva.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3. Grilled miso marinated MahiMahi. The marinade was basically just mirin, rice wine vinegar, miso, sesame oil and scallions. The side was red bell peppers, japanese eggplant and green beans that were also grilled and finished with a drizzle of lemongrass ginger oil and a sprinkle of sea salt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Gotta keep it light going into a long weekend of feasting!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I am pondering a feasting weekend as well. We have no plans so why not?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Me too. Maybe even cooking some good "bar food".... Poppers and wings sound good ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sounds like a wonderful dinner!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3. The man is working late again finishing up a job before the long weekend so it's a solo dinner for me. I am wrapping pieces of marinated mozzarella with basil and then prosciutto and dipping it in balsamic. If I'm still hungry there are roasted red peppers and a few artichoke hearts along with various other cheeses that can get turned into something.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'm still working but I'm seeing a cocktail in the near future. Its nice to work at home where no one can see that I'm in pajamas (doing laundry,) and drinking cocktails.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: weezieduzzit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          This sounds like my dinner last night which was fantastic! Your combination is quite creative and sounds like a winner. I might actually plan a dinner of prosciutto wrapped mozzarella with balsamic it's such a tasty sounding combination.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. Ugh. I over salted everything! Maybe TMI, but once a month -
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I over salt food! Ruin it .....for everyone but me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My taster just goes wonky :(

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: sedimental

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My palette in general is used to salty foods (I add a little salt to just about everything), and I too (well for me, all the time) have to remember to use a light hand with the salt when I am cooking for others.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Pizza on whole wheat crust with pesto. One pizza was turkey sausage, broccoli and oil cured black olives. The other was topped with turkey sausage and carmelized onions. Turned out to be surprisingly delicious for a meal thrown together from random things in the fridge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: MAH

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sounds like my kinda "stuff from the fridge" meal!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Tonight, there's a Nigel Slater recipe called "pork and pears". Which, pretty much, is what it is. A pork chop, garlic and sliced pear are fried together. Pan is deglazed with a splash of white wine and slightly bigger splash of water. Alongside, there'll be asparagus, purple sprouting broccoli and Jersey Royal spuds.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                sounds as though herself is back in residence...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Nope, not yet. Arrives back 9.30am UK time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The pear made a nice change to the more usual fried apple. And I remembered that I bought a bottle of pear juice on my way home from Devon earlier in the week.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Herself hasnt expresed any preferences for tomorrow's dinner, as the jet lag can upset appetite, so she'll either be having chilli (which is defrosting as we speak) or toast & Marmite.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. Wow my local grocerys tore really stocked up for the holiday. I found so many wonderful things this morning including the most ginormous portabello caps which I could not resist. I think I will either stuff with blue cheese or "stuff" them with roasted turkey breast seasoned in some sort of way. I guess I could always roast them and serve as a side dish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. I'm finally back from 3 weeks straight of travel - Chicago, Maine, DC, San Francisco - and gearing up to open the house on the Vineyard this weekend. I haven't really cooked in about 3 weeks either, so I've decided to spend today making some salads and things so the man won't go hungry:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  salmon salad with pasta and dill
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  sesame noodle salad
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  cucumber dill salad

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm also planning on making a big steak feast for dinner - something grilled, for sure, with an avocado salad alongside.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: gini

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That's a LOT of travel, gini - in some really good food cities! Enjoy your steak dinner!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gini

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      wow gini, welcome back, sure hasn't been great grilling weather lately...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We actually grill year round - if we can get to the grill, we use it! We've located it directly out the french doors of our dining room so it's practically within arm's reach. I'm also one of the laziest people I know - if I don't need to do dishes or wait an hour for a roast, I am a much happier camper.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Rain rain go away! Everyone in our neck of the woods is totally bummed about the forecast for the holiday weekend, even the usually peppy weather reporters are subdued. I just took out two burgers for dinner and am revamping our weekend plans for gardening and grilling. I think TV and lasagna will be a better fit for Saturday. Going to go early tomorrow to the sausage factory for a box of sweet and I just programmed a bunch of cooking shows on the dvr to cheer us up.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      4 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I agree, we are swamped in rain too although perhaps that'll mean I'll actually follow through on relaxing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Agreed- who want to report rainy AND cold. Ugh. At least Monday seems half way promising!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            berheenia I know you are trying to empty the shelves in antipation of the move, but the sausage factory has the most amazing marinated artichokes I have ever eaten -- with long stems -- in glass jars to the right of the register. A bit spendy but oh man are they good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              duly noted and thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Yay for holiday weekends! I've been grumpy about missing UK bank holidays so am very pleased about this weekend, My husband got back late from his work trip Weds evening so last night was the first time I've cooked for him in ages. It coincided with veg box day and I had added in balls of pizza dough so that pretty much decided what to cook!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I did 3 (small) pizzas, my favourite was one with capers, olives, chilli and basil but I did a special asparagus shaped one - I couldn't resist cooking some as we got a very generous 2 bunches in the box.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dessert was honey roasted apricots with pistachio gelato.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Photos of the asparagus pizza and the apricots

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oops try again! The dessert (hopefully)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  OMG on the thought of what honey roasted apricots paired with pistachio gelato must taste like. Wow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Very nicely done on the pizza and dessert, helen!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: helen_m

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    helen what an amazing meal, and such gorgeous pics too! husband must be SO glad to be home...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. Dinner will be OUT tonight with several friends - and GUESS WHERE? Nope, it won't be at Dali. :-) Heading into the city to go to Atlantic Fish Co. on Boylston. I've been there twice before (a long time ago) but do remember it was stellar food and service. And the company will add to a good time, I'm sure.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I've been craving seafood, and I'm looking forward to seeing what types of preparations they'll have and what seafood I can't buy in the stupidmarkets.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    13 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Look forward to hearing about the wonderful treats from the sea that you find!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        We were supposed to head into the city tonight too but alas plans fell thru so the few that can still make are going to Not Your Average Joes. Ugh but majority rules and these are my great non foodie friends so I'll deal, LOL. I have only been once before and it was mediocre at best but they service was friendly and cocktails strong.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the cocktails are key fX2 because the food really is pretty bad. make sure you are not the designated driver and you'll be fine. ;)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gah, the cocktails weren't even that good. Small and too much "filler". Figured I be safe with a cosmo but way too much cranberry and triple sec and not enough vodka!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            However the company was great and the kids loved the desserts!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Interesting - I find NYAJ's to be the best "local chain" around us. I just ate at Macaroni Grill today with Mom - I'd take NYAJ's *any* day of the week over MacGrill!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The NYAJ's near me is actually pretty good! In fact I'll be going there on Wednesday to have dinner with a friend. We always sit at the bar, so service is always very good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I wonder if ia location inconsistency? Service was good last night but food was pretty mediocre. Funny thing was my husband raved about the green beans with his steak tips. They were simply steamed which tells me I need to dial back all the fixin I do to veggies, lol!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'm assuming they're franchised, so perhaps? They DO have different enough menus for each location, so another perhaps?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And yes, simple steamed beans that are still crispy are a revelation. Same with the simple grilled asparagus that picked up the smokiness from the grill at Atlantic Fish on Friday night. So simply done, and yet so good!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    NYAJ is not franchised. My man used to wait tables there after he was laid off in 2009.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Agree about the location inconsistency. Some chefs/ GMs run their restaurants better than others. At the time I was a big fan of the wine list (Conundrum for $32 and Duckhorn for $30(?)) and salads.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: gini

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Well, there *are* several restaurants in both MA and VA, which is why I was wondering if they were different owners.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      And yes, the Methuen branch always seems to have great wines and interesting salads.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              How was Atlantic Fish? We have been trying to get into the city to support areas impacted by the bombing and have never eaten there. Love to hear a report.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                It was VERY good! We had lots of rain (I picked up a friend in Amesbury before driving in), and all of us had totally forgotten that a Red Sox home game was supposed to be going on (rain delayed). So my friend and I ended up having to park over at the Marriott and walk through the Sky Bridge and the mall stores (PACKED with people - probably waiting for the game to start before heading over to Fenway) to get over to the Copley side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I ended up choosing pan-seared New Bedford sea scallops - I thought there might be 4 scallops if I was lucky - our waiter, Matthew, said it was based on weight - but when the plate came out? There were SEVEN of them! Perfectly pan-seared, with a half lemon in a sleeve to squeeze over the scallops. Also got smoky-grilled asparagus (superb!) and rice pilaf, and a very good key lime pie for dessert. We had a great time, and I was glad to help support the business, as it is located *right* next to The Forum, which was Ground Zero for the first bomb. Tons and tons and tons of people out on the streets and shopping, despite the horrible weather.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit