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Home Cooking Dish of the Month (January 2014) Nominations

herby Dec 18, 2013 05:07 PM

Here we are; the 2013 is almost over and it is time to look forward to a new, glorious year and to a new, exciting dish to prepare to start the year off just right. I’ve been curious about this term, dish, and looked it up on Wikipedia. It is explained that “a dish in gastronomy is a specific food preparation, a distinct article or variety of food, with cooking finished, and ready to eat, or be served. So our definition of a dish as an ingredient and a method of preparation is spot on. Please remember this when nominating. And yes, it is that time again when we come together to nominate, and debate, and persuade each other to focus our food attention for a month on that one special “dish”.

Please use this thread to discuss the dishes you would like to cook in January. Indicate you are nominating a dish by writing its name in ALL CAPITALS. The thread will be open until 10am EST on Wednesday December 25th (7am in LA, 3pm in London, and 2am next day in Sydney) and once the nominations close we’ll move on to the voting thread.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

  1. MidwesternerTT Dec 18, 2013 08:36 PM

    SOUP - Specifically I plan to be trying a lot more of the 30-pages of soup recipes from Joy of Cooking cookbook. I'm thinking of thinner-than-stew recipes, and not chili (although both of those will also make appearance on our table). I'll probably pair with

    BREAD - most often Bread Machine recipes but the occasional biscuit, cornbread muffin or whole wheat beer bread might also make an appearance.

    1 Reply
    1. re: MidwesternerTT
      nothingswrong Dec 19, 2013 12:20 AM

      Was really into the soup idea until I saw

      BREAD !!!

    2. juliejulez Dec 18, 2013 08:44 PM

      I think SOUP might be good, so many variations. Plus, I'm getting a Crockpot for Christmas and soups are a good way for me to try it out!

      4 Replies
      1. re: juliejulez
        Berheenia Dec 19, 2013 06:57 AM


        1. re: Berheenia
          Berheenia Dec 20, 2013 07:07 AM

          change mine to HOT SOUPS

          1. re: Berheenia
            herby Dec 20, 2013 07:37 AM

            Berheenia, hot soups is almost as general as soups. We need an ingredient to make it a dish.

            1. re: herby
              Berheenia Dec 24, 2013 12:05 AM

              VEGETABLE SOUPS
              MEAT SOUPS
              BEAN - LEGUME SOUPS
              CREAM SOUPS

      2. foodcompletesme Dec 19, 2013 03:46 AM

        SOUP! I had nominated 'chowder' for the chow hounds last month but didn't get enough support to be voted on. Agree with juliejulez, I use my slow cooker to make great soups & chowders.
        I did not even look at your current DOTM thread because I am trying not to eat cookies and sweets to abandon during this holiday food frenzy...but hope you all had fun with it.
        I would join you in Jan. if we enjoy SOUP.

        1. jpr54_1 Dec 19, 2013 06:30 AM


          17 Replies
          1. re: jpr54_1
            juliejulez Dec 19, 2013 07:47 AM

            What kinds of things would you make preserves or jam from in January?

            1. re: juliejulez
              herby Dec 19, 2013 10:01 AM

              Not jpr... the only one that comes to mind is marmalade because seville oranges are usually in January but I think towards the end.

              1. re: herby
                jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 06:25 AM

                what did you mean not jpr...?

                1. re: jpr54_1
                  herby Dec 20, 2013 06:50 AM

                  I meant that I am not jpr - because I was answering question that was directed at you. Hope you do not mind...

                  1. re: herby
                    jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 07:10 AM

                    no problem

                    There are many farmers markets that finding fruit should not be too difficult.

                    I live in Broward county Florida and we get lots of items from Central America and Mexico.

                    My favorite things to make as you probably can guess by now are pickles and jams, etc

                    1. re: jpr54_1
                      juliejulez Dec 20, 2013 08:32 AM

                      Yeah I don't know of any farmers market that is open here in Colorado in January....

                      1. re: juliejulez
                        jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 08:45 AM

                        that's too bad

                        1. re: juliejulez
                          jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 08:48 AM

                          you can always go to a costco, sam's club,bj's

                          1. re: jpr54_1
                            juliejulez Dec 20, 2013 08:50 AM

                            Even then, that stuff isn't in season up here. I prefer to eat seasonal local stuff whenever possible.

                          2. re: juliejulez
                            jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 08:50 AM


                            1. re: jpr54_1
                              juliejulez Dec 20, 2013 08:52 AM

                              Um, I'm not. I'm just explaining that it's different for other people in other parts of the country. We don't all have access to lots of fresh seasonal produce and farmers markets like you do in Florida. I think being aware of what most people have access to in various seasons is important when deciding the DOTM. I feel like people in CA and FL forget that most of us don't get what they do most of the year.

                              1. re: juliejulez
                                juliejulez Dec 20, 2013 09:03 AM

                                And furthermore, in my opinion, the whole point of preserves etc. is to preserve the bounty of seasonal produce. What's the fun/point of preserving something that I can get in the middle of winter shipped in from Mexico?

                                So, my final point is, I think preserves/canning etc is best reserved for months when there's more available for everyone to do.

                                1. re: juliejulez
                                  rabaja Dec 22, 2013 08:28 AM

                                  Don't be lumping the Californians in with the Floridians...:)
                                  Northern Californian here and I agree that putting stuff up is supposed to be about preserving what you can harvest seasonally so that you may use it throughout the year.
                                  Only one school of thought for sure, but one by which we try to live.
                                  In winter we put up marmalade, apple and pear sauce, candy peel and...that's all I can think of right now.
                                  It's a great dotm idea, but may be more fun in late summer when you're trying to put to use your bounty for use in less prolific months.

                                  1. re: rabaja
                                    jpr54_1 Dec 22, 2013 08:55 AM

                                    DON'T LUMP ME IN WITH CALIFORNIANS
                                    South East Coast of Florida here and proud
                                    Preserving, pickling are also fun
                                    I enjoy my homemade pickles and preserves

                                    1. re: jpr54_1
                                      rabaja Dec 23, 2013 06:34 AM

                                      Ease up, I was only joking.

                    2. re: juliejulez
                      jpr54_1 Dec 19, 2013 02:34 PM

                      lemon preserves
                      orange preserves
                      apple preserves
                      tomato prerves

                      1. re: jpr54_1
                        gingershelley Dec 20, 2013 01:27 AM

                        winter is citrus fruit heaven for canning.

                        Also can make things like squash butter, piccallili, rosemary jelly, hot pepper jelly.

                  2. herby Dec 19, 2013 10:10 AM

                    Soup is great idea. I wonder if it is too broad - Dave or LN could you chime in on soup? Should we narrow it a bit or is it fine?

                    I usually organize a soup lunch in the middle of January when the party fatigue wears out, the weather is cold and everyone is looking forward to gather around the table again :) Everyone brings a pot of soup and containers. I make a couple of soups, provide good bread and dessert/coffee/tea, some wine maybe. We sample soups and everyone takes home containers of leftovers. Really fun, easy and lots of various soups for the freezer to take to work for lunch or even for a quick dinner.

                    6 Replies
                    1. re: herby
                      meatn3 Dec 19, 2013 12:10 PM

                      If soup is too broad then perhaps bean soups? I tend to make bean soups more in the winter since they are so hearty.

                      1. re: herby
                        L.Nightshade Dec 19, 2013 01:31 PM

                        We have established in prior threads that just "soup" is too broad. It's a nice idea for a thread, but for Dish of the Month, we need to be a little more specific. Bean soup, suggested above, would work. So would any soup that names a specific main ingredient.

                        Now, back to herby! With my thanks for temporarily taking the reins!

                        1. re: L.Nightshade
                          herby Dec 19, 2013 03:12 PM

                          Many thanks, LN! That's what I thought.

                          Now let's talk about what kind of soup is most appealing for January. I checked one of my favourite soup books - The Best Soup in the World by Clifford Wright - and like his broad but main ingredient specific soup categories. I am sure we can come up with many more but here are four soup categories inspired by Mr. Wright's that I am happy to nominate:

                          MEAT SOUPS
                          VEGETABLE SOUPS
                          LEGUME SOUPS
                          SEAFOOD SOUPS

                          1. re: herby
                            MidwesternerTT Dec 19, 2013 08:11 PM

                            LEGUME SOUPS (which may contain meat, meat broth) - since split pea soup and navy bean soup are both on the January plans list.

                            1. re: herby
                              sedimental Dec 20, 2013 02:32 PM

                              If we picked VEGETABLE SOUP, could a vegetable soup also include some beans, legumes or meat? As long as the focus was on vegetables? Or is that pushing the category
                              too much?

                              I often add those things to my vegetable soup in the winter, but still consider it a vegetable soup. Unlike a beef barley soup, navy bean or split pea ( with smaller amounts of vegetables).

                              1. re: sedimental
                                herby Dec 20, 2013 04:20 PM

                                Absolutely! Vegetable soup could include all kinds of other ingredients as long as it is still mainly vegetable soup. It does not have to be vegetarian either. Take minestrone as an example. It could have beef or chicken broth base or just water; sometime a handful of small pasta goes in but not always; a handful of beans can be added to it but not necessarily; while a variety of vegetables is a must.

                        2. j
                          Jeanne Dec 20, 2013 12:47 AM

                          SOUP. I disagree that soup in general is too large of a category. You just had cookies! That alone is a huge category.

                          I love all soups and would love some new ideas. Seafood chowders, bean, vegie, beef - whatever. Would love that!

                          7 Replies
                          1. re: Jeanne
                            foodcompletesme Dec 20, 2013 05:17 AM

                            I agree with Jeanne. Primarily meat soups are not exclusive of legumes or vegetables. How could you categorize one as meat only?

                            Just like you didn't vote for only chocolate cookies, or only almond cookies.

                            1. re: Jeanne
                              herby Dec 20, 2013 07:59 AM

                              I have no idea why cookies were acceptable as a dish. However, we agreed that dish = ingredient + method. We need an ingredient to make soup a dish as defined for the purpose of DOTM.

                              I think we'll still have huge variety whatever soup category we choose to cook from (if the soup is chosen in the end) and it will be more focused and easier to compare results.

                              1. re: herby
                                MidwesternerTT Dec 20, 2013 01:46 PM

                                Easy enough for me to make all the soups I want during the month and report only the legume ones (or whatever gets selected) on DOTM. The rest, if comment-worthy will get noted on What's for Dinner or on the Joy of Cooking recipes reporting thread.

                                1. re: MidwesternerTT
                                  herby Dec 20, 2013 04:12 PM

                                  This is exactly the spirit of CHOW, MidwesternerTT! We do not have to report everything we cook on one thread and so we set various threads to talk about various topics. This one happens to be dedicated to one dish per month that we first choose together then cook and compare notes before moving on to something entirely different for the next month. So, we really need to chose a dish and not a broad food category; then we can cook it together and talk about it and praise and criticize and tweak and whatever else we choose to do :)

                              2. re: Jeanne
                                boyzoma Dec 21, 2013 02:13 PM

                                I agree with SOUP as a DOTM. I make all kinds of soups. My January menu has Beans & Ham, Butternut Squash, Clam Chowder and Hungarian Mushroom Soup on my various menus. Which of those would not qualify? We have "soup Thursday" during the winter months if possible.

                                1. re: boyzoma
                                  herby Dec 21, 2013 04:07 PM

                                  Boyzoma, we need to narrow down "soup" somewhat. Two soups you listed - butternut and mushroom - would nicely fit into "vegetable soup" category and bean soup would fit into "legume soups". Just pick one narrower soup category to nominate - does not need to be one of my examples :)

                                  1. re: herby
                                    boyzoma Dec 26, 2013 01:25 PM

                                    If we didn't narrow down "cookies", which is WIDELY varied, I'll back out of this debate about soups. I'll look forward to next month's options.

                              3. jpr54_1 Dec 20, 2013 06:20 AM

                                HOT SOUPS
                                COLD SOUPS

                                LEGUME SOUPS

                                1. herby Dec 20, 2013 09:45 AM

                                  SHEPHERD PIE

                                  2 Replies
                                  1. re: herby
                                    GretchenS Dec 20, 2013 11:20 AM

                                    I could totally get behind SHEPHERD'S PIE!!! Great winter dish. Also LEGUME SOUPS.

                                    1. re: GretchenS
                                      boyzoma Dec 21, 2013 02:15 PM

                                      I just did a turkey version of shep. pie. Totally delicious. But I need a break from that for a while.

                                  2. jpr54_1 Dec 22, 2013 04:33 AM

                                    CHICKEN SOUP

                                    BEEF BARLEY SOUP

                                    MINESTRONE SOUP

                                    TOMATO SOUP

                                    1 Reply
                                    1. re: jpr54_1
                                      aching Dec 24, 2013 09:15 AM

                                      I think MINESTRONE would be a great DOTM. There are tons of variations, but it's specific enough to qualify as a single dish.

                                    2. herby Dec 23, 2013 04:18 PM

                                      I was doing a bit of menu planning for next week and thought that after the holiday season is over it would be nice to have lighter dinners and FRITTATA came to mind as a tasty and versatile breakfast-for-dinner option. Could be vegetarian or meaty or cheesy and served with either crisp green salad or even with Caesar salad or warm roots salad. Anyone else is interested in this dish for January?

                                      2 Replies
                                      1. re: herby
                                        Berheenia Dec 24, 2013 12:27 AM

                                        How about MAIN COURSE EGG DISH or is that too general.

                                        1. re: Berheenia
                                          herby Dec 24, 2013 08:24 AM

                                          It is too general isn't it? We need an ingredient (egg) and a method (?) to call it DOTM. What main course egg dish appeals to you?

                                      2. meatn3 Dec 24, 2013 11:43 AM

                                        I *think* I'm on the mend enough to be able to participate.

                                        BEAN SOUPS
                                        HOT BORSCHT

                                        1. herby Dec 25, 2013 08:08 AM

                                          Nominations are now closed. Please vote for January DOTM here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/929045

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