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May 26, 2013 04:41 AM

What's For Dinner #220- The Memorial Day Edition (5/25/13 - 5/29/13)

With the official start of the summer season upon us, it's time to think about outdoor cooking and dining. However, if you live in the northeast, you might be more inclined to think of stews and soups -- it's been that cold here!

So, burgers and dogs? Chicken and fish? What food -- and libations -- do you have planned for the holiday weekend, and the summer days beyond?

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  1. It'll be a roasted pork tenderloin tonight for dinner, since I've done no cooking so far this long holiday weekend - except reheating.

    I'm leaning towards a key lime & black pepper pork tenderloin. I've got a blend from Spice Hunter that I augment with additional lime zest and a squoze of fresh lime juice. Rub it all over the tenderloin, pan-sear it and then finish it in the oven. Roasted potatoes and onions in the convection oven, and either steamed broccoli or asparagus - depends on what I find at the market today.

    ETA: OK, just discovered I have none of the Spice Hunter blend. Quick-change artist that I am, I found a Maple-Pepper with Garlic blend by Highland Foods that'll work. Perhaps I'll even add some lime zest to it.

    2 Replies
    1. re: LindaWhit

      Your tenderloin sounds terrific linda and I love the idea of adding some lime zest to your seasoning. Looking forward to hear what veggie your trip to the market yields. I can't seem to get enough of this season's asparagus. It's just so much sweeter than the imports we get through the year.

      1. re: Breadcrumbs

        I ended up mixing about a Tbsp. of the maple-pepper-salt blend with some additional minced garlic (about a tsp.), the zest of a whole lime, and about 1 Tbsp. or so of olive oil. That was rubbed all over the pork tenderloin and it's sitting in the fridge. I have 1 Tbsp. of fresh lime juice that I'll probably drizzle over the pork while it's roasting.

        As for the green veggies - I picked up broccoli, green beans, and asparagus. I'm leaning towards the asparagus.

    2. Though not Memorial Day here in Canada my meal tonight is inspired by our friends south of the this case, a Chicago/Italian dish and family favourite called Chicken Vesuvio. mr bc has committed to breaking down the chicken and then I'm good to go. Oh, and as usual he'll be picking the wine to go alongside.

      Last night there was a bit of a chill in the air but not enough to impede our plans to grill. To start mr bc grilled bread for our crostini and after I gave them a quick rub w garlic onto the table they went to be enjoyed with a lovely Bufala mozzarella I'd picked up at the Italian market. I topped the cheese w a drizzle of Balsamic reduction, evoo and a sprinkling of baby basil leaves. Next up was grilled chicken which I'd' glazed with some reduced Balsamic and dusted w Italian herbs prior to grilling. We served this with a simple salad of baby greens and a potato salad.

      9 Replies
        1. re: Breadcrumbs

          Wow, that mozza looks beautiful! Reminds me of the one sitting in our fridge.... ready to be drizzled and inhaled :-)

          1. re: Breadcrumbs

            Breadcrumbs, that mozzarella dish belongs in some museum of culinary art. Gorgeous.

            1. re: Breadcrumbs

              LOVE both these pics. that potato salad looks delicious, can you expound?

              1. re: mariacarmen

                Thanks everyone! mc this is my absolute favourite potato salad recipe. It comes from a wonderful cookbook called "Red White and Greens - The Italian Way With Vegetables" by Faith Willinger. It's called Insalta Pantesca. Essentially it's a potato, tomato and olive salad with capers and a wine vinaigrette dressing. I find it's best with grape or cherry tomatoes and the tiniest new potatoes you can find.

                I Googled it and hit the jackpot as someone has posted it online. Here's a link in case it's of interest:


                I usually sneak some garlic into the dressing and toss in some basil if I have it in the garden or on hand.

                1. re: Breadcrumbs

                  You must stop posting pictures. I have taken to licking my screen when you do. Lol

                  1. re: Breadcrumbs

                    That potato salad sounds delicious.

                    1. re: Breadcrumbs

                      thanks, BC! i have all these things!
                      my fave up until now has been boiled potatoes, drizzle with lots of extra virgin olive oil while still hot, salt, and mix in a shallot or two minced fine, and chopped fresh thyme. always a favorite at picnics.

                      i can't wait to try this one.

                  2. re: Breadcrumbs

                    You definitely have a knack for plating, BC...incredible food photography there! The food jumps out of the pictures!!!

                  3. My big grilled steak dinner on Friday happened - we just stepped between the rain drops in Boston to grill up some rib eyes. Smothered zucchini and squash with basil to go alongside.

                    The salmon salad and peanut noodle salad came out well - we took them on island for lunch yesterday.

                    Last night was cold and rainy on the Vineyard, so I steamed mussels in a coconut milk, red thai curry, jalepeno broth - absolutely fabulous. I plan to deshell the mussels and eat it as a soup for lunch! Fiddleheads in lemon-butter alongside. A nice Decoy pinot noir to go with. Here's to a good season!

                    4 Replies
                    1. re: gini

                      gini your dinner last night sounds amazing. I love fiddleheads and can imagine them being lovely with your mussels.

                      1. re: gini

                        Your weekend eats sound incredible...steak and salmon and peanut noodle salad. Do you have a recipe for the peanut noodle salad

                      2. Well my busy day yesterday was certainly busy. Dinner was AH MAZE ING. The charcuterie options were a bit different than what was on the menu, so I went with a housemade soft sausage that they called "The Forest Moon of Endor", which for Star Wars geeks like me, was amusing. Not sure why it was called that but the waiter did say no Ewoks were harmed in the making of it. Also had the prosciutto, and then, a Shropshire Blue cheese, which I am now in love with and will be seeking out. The board also included grainy mustard, some kind of pickled squash stuff that I didn't really like, and a rhubarb chutney, which was good, I had never had rhubarb before. Not sure if I'll seek it out but now I know if it's presented to me I'll like it well enough. I had the lamb as a main, another new thing for me. It was so so delicious, I don't understand why people don't like lamb after having that. One skewer was a ground lamb, the other was just chunks. The gnudi was great too. SO had the salmon and he really enjoyed that. Dessert was a meyer lemon bread pudding with pink peppercorn ice cream. The ice cream was... different. Not a fan. But I ate around it, the bread pudding part was great. I really miss eating at places like this, so doing this was a great treat. I told SO I don't need presents, just food.

                        Also I got a new car, weee! Perfect timing too because today we are heading up to the mountains to BFFs house for a BBQ this afternoon. I'm making an orzo salad per host's request with a lemon dressing, grape tomatoes, finely diced shallots, and asparagus. Her husband is doing BBQ chicken, and apparently she has made cupcakes for my birthday. I already had cupcakes from my boss but I guess I'll *force* myself to eat another one ;)

                        Not really sure about dinner tonight... the BBQ is mid-afternoon so we may not be real hungry, may just do some simple sandwiches or grill up our own burgers on my new grill pan, conveniently given to me on Thursday by the SO. The propane on the grill ran out the same day.

                        8 Replies
                        1. re: juliejulez

                          Enjoy the new car and new grill pan, julie!

                          1. re: juliejulez

                            Congratulations on the new car! I love love new cars, it's so fun when there still so fresh, clean and new it's like a hotel room. You can never have enough cupcakes right? Enjoy, long live the birthday "excuse" to eat whatever :)

                            1. re: juliejulez

                              What a great birthday week. I need to start this practice my ext birthday. Your dinner sounded amazing. I have to agree with the pink peppercorn ice cream. That doesn't sound good to me. I have had it in a syrup that was great on chicken and waffles. What kind of car did you get? Have fun at the BFF 's house and eat well.

                              1. re: suzigirl

                                I got a used low mile 2013 Ford Edge SUV. I needed to get AWD before next winter but decided I wanted to have it now so we could use this summer for camping etc. SO has a big truck but it only geta 10mpg so its not good for road trips. So far I'm impressed, I picked up 4 people at the airport and fit all of them plus all their luggage comfortably. Quite the change from an Accord coupe :)

                                1. re: juliejulez

                                  I am glad you got your suv. Sounds like the trade up is working for you. I have had two Accords. I loved both of them very much

                              2. re: juliejulez

                                glad you're enjoying! yeah, lamb is gooooood....

                                i have to say, that ice cream sounds good to me...i really like unconventional flavors in desserts, if they're done right, maybe because i'm not much of a sweets person.

                                congrats on the car!

                                1. re: juliejulez

                                  Your birthday dinner sounds delicious...yay for lamb and also the charcuterie! Congrats on the new car and can't wait to hear how you like using the new grill pan!! Happy Birthday weekend!

                                  1. re: juliejulez

                                    Congrats on the car--sounds like your birthday week went great!

                                  2. Pork tenderloin, green beans, and some form of potatoes here tonight. I have more potatoes than I know what to do with.

                                    Going to try Thomas Keller's Pork Brine from AHAH but I'm thinking about grilling the tenderloin instead of roasting it. We shall see. Green beans might wind up with red onion and salsa dressing from Mexican Everyday. Potatoes might be the Potato Pave from AHAH or Mashed Potatoes Chantilly from Alex Guarnaschelli's Old School Comfort Food. It is going to be a total cookbook mashup!