What's for Dinner #247 - the Indian Summer Edition (Through October 6, 2013)
New England seems to having the first of its last gasps of summer weather. By Wednesday, it's supposed to be low 80s - easily swimsuit weather for the hardy souls who live here! (These are folk who are out running in shorts and tee shirts when it climbs to the low 50s in February for a single day! LOL)
So I suspect those grills will continue to be used. What's cooking in your neck of the woods?
And doesn't it just figure, I told Mom I'd make her beef stew some time this week to bring up to her house....and I was planning on making it on Wednesday. My timing is perfect! (Not)
I was going to make it in the oven, but now I might try and get up early and prep it to go into the crockpot. I have an older model, so it doesn't get as hot as the newer ones do, so 10 hours should be OK without dissolving the meat. Maybe I'll cut larger chunks of beef to prevent dissolution.
Otherwise, it's leftovers for me. And perhaps chopping, sealing and freezing more CSA veg that's coming our way this afternoon.
Berheenia - usually it's just freshly roasted and peeled red bell peppers (or jarred, drained as well as you can do so) whirled in small food processor with salt, some Aleppo pepper (or use crushed red pepper if you don't have Aleppo), and some heavy cream or half and half. I don't add a lot of the cream - just enough to turn it a rosy pale creamy red. :-)
Indian summer is quite right! Regardless of the calendar, it feels a ways off from autumn here in NYC, but so long as bright sun and warm temps keep my farmer's markets well-stocked, I can't complain.
Tonight I'm reaping the bounties of Indian summer with an Indian meal of a different sort. For the main, we have chicken saag. While the bright green saag is usually made with spinach, I'm going with the wild green flavor of stinging nettles. Their season is normally over by midsummer, but fair weather has delivered them into September and their untamed verve promises a bold match for cardamom, garam masala and green chilies. For veg I have pudding-soft slices of graffiti eggplant cooked in an Afghan-spiced tomato sauce to be served with labneh as well as green beans cooked until they're soft as a Georgia drawl with bacon, onions and chili vinegar. Spoons and forks be damned, this is a meal I'm digging into with flatbread, licking the essence of summer from my fingertips while it lasts.
It's 76 degrees here but weather is going up starting tomorrow to the 80's the rest of the week (supposedly)..I have chicken breast tenders thawed in the fridge I took out of the freezer a couple of days ago but after having chicken two days in a row, that's not what we want tonight.
I took a chuck roast out last night to make room for some meats we picked up on our way home from the fair yesterday so that's WFD. I'm going to season it up with s & p, cumin, onion & garlic powders, and some thyme then pan sear it on both sides.
It'll go into the oven with quartered potatoes, onions, carrots, bell peppers & celery. I'll make a gravy to pour over the lot and slow braise. Maybe some oven roasted broccoli on the side. Maybe some biscuits.
Saturday after the fair, we stopped at this BBQ restaurant that had a buffet with southern classics. OMG, I made a pig out of myself, I confess. Being that it was my first visit here and my BF bragged about the food, I had to try quite a bit so I could give a fair review (yeah right).
They had smoky pulled pork, bbq pork ribs, fried chicken, bbq chicken, butter beans, field peas w/snaps, collards with pork, potato salad, the best hushpuppies...this is just what I had (head hanging in shame...lol...) oh, and really good honey bun cake. I should be eating a salad today.....
Indian summer always makes me think of the Peanuts cartoon where Lucy explains that Indian Summer is a device wherein the Indians tricked the approaching calvary into thinking that the weather was nice, when in reality it was about to snow.
Tonight will be a redux of last night's fabulous tuna tartare, and we will probably turn the spicy chicken thighs into tacos. It was all so good, that I'm delighted to have it again.