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What's for Dinner #280 - Lamb and Lion Edition [Through March 5, 2014]

Some of us had a quiet, mild lamby start to the month. Some have had a lion-like Rawrrr! start to this month.

Hope those who've been in the path of the Megaboo Storm - be it southern CA with the rain and flooding, the ice and snow in the Midwest and Mid-Atlantic, or the bitter cold in the Northern climes - are keeping warm and power is remaining on. Those of us in the New England area got a pass on this most recent storm, thankfully. We're getting there - not out of the woods, but we're getting there.

Are you still cooking warming cozy meals or is everyone really looking forward to lighter fare?

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  1. As for me, I've been wanting a panino, or a hash of some sorts. And there's a good chunk of lamb from Saturday's dinner that I think will be used in a hash tonight. Perhaps a panino tomorrow.

    Diced lamb, potatoes, red bell pepper, egg on top; small salad alongside. Let's see if I can not screw this one up as I did the last one.

    2 Replies
    1. re: LindaWhit

      Changed my mind. The majority of the lamb went into a lamb-barley soup for lunches this week: lamb, carrots, potatoes, some onion, pearl barley, chicken stock augmented with some beef stock, salt, pepper, dried thyme and a bay leaf. It's simmering away now.

      The rest of the lamb leftovers from Saturday is dinner tonight. :-)

    2. Cheeseburgers with roasted mirepoix and leftover macaroni and cheese are on the menu tonight along with some kind of steamed vegetable from the freezer.

      1 Reply
      1. re: Njchicaa

        I've gotta say that adding mayo to ground beef to make into burgers is totally wrong but it tastes soooo good! Damn you Alex Guarnaschelli!

      2. last nights lemon chicken (Hazan) has made for a lovely cold sliced chicken breast for todays lunch salad - with bacon and smoked mozzarella (some carrots and cucumber for good measure)

        Tonight I am thinking chicken fried steak - I made extra mushrooms in white whine sauce and green beans madeira so I have those for sides along with some gravy I made from the chicken drippings

        1. Well, only one of my GFs ended up coming over last night for the red carpet show, but we had a grand ol' time -- thanks to my man servant who kept serving us snacky treats: Alsatian tart, spinach & kale bites, spanakopita, truffled liver mousse, and bubbly. We even ended up watching the snooze fest that was the actual show. Yawn.

          As for this week, It's another one of busy evenings coming up -- tonight we're celebrating a friend's PhD defense at a local "upscale dining" (overrated) place that thankfully serves a mean martini. My guess is we'll actually eat somewhere else -- TBD. I am hoping for a steaming bowl of ramen or half a roast duck. Yep, I could totally get behind either one.

          Tomorrow, my band got hired to play at the local gay bar for their Mardi Gras celebration, which probably means oyster shooters for dinner in between sets/songs. I can live with that :-)

          Wednesday I might actually have an opportunity for a home-cooked meal (finally!!!), even though I have yet another gig late at night.... thanks to the smashing impression we made at same bar on Friday. Also very good news.

          Not nearly as much snow as was predicted. Love it.

          9 Replies
          1. re: linguafood

            Think I need to get a 'man servant' .

                1. re: linguafood

                  It is our role, our ambition, our whole life purpose just to serve you.

              1. re: linguafood

                Sounds like a good evening, if the show (and fashion, imo) were a snore. Hope tonight is just as fun.

                1. re: alliegator

                  The fashion was a mega-bore, save for very few exceptions.

                2. re: linguafood

                  the gay gig sounds like a ball! great that you're getting to perform so much.....

                  1. re: mariacarmen

                    Yes, it's been a good month for me. It only took a decade for me to get booked in that other bar '-D

                    Let's hope it continues...

                3. Long time lurker on the WFD threads, first time posting :) my job makes it pretty impossible to cook very much on weekdays, which I make up for by going a little crazy on the weekends and inviting random friends over last-minute.

                  Last night, in an attempt to find a lamb that I can actually tolerate, dinner for me and the roommates was a roasted rack of Colorado lamb, with sides of sauteed asparagus and roasted red pepper Israeli couscous. Warm tomato basil soup on the side with homemade cheese-y cracker/biscuit type thingees. Tonight through the end of the week will be take-out, per usual. Sigh. Oh, how I look forward to cooking on Sundays.

                  34 Replies
                  1. re: sharebear

                    Welcome, sharebear! I don't cook every day either - mostly on weekends - although I'm going to try and re-purpose into new meals (like Saturday's lamb roast into hash or paninis) and cook smaller meals so I'm forced to think of something quick during the week.

                    1. re: LindaWhit

                      Part of my problem is that I do my grocery shopping on the weekend with very little planning and uh, can get sort of indecisive ("oh this swiss chard looks good... oooh or this asparagus? OKAY BOTH") so I end up with a lot of random things in the fridge during the week. So while weekend dinners usually consist of a very well-planned menu, when I do get a chance to cook on weeknights it's always an exercise of mishing and mashing all the odds & ends.

                      My mom thinks I need to plan grocery shopping more effectively but I say it's all just training for my eventual appearance on Chopped :D ("In your basket today: leftover pickled daikon radish; pork tenderloin; jicama; okra; and ten shiitake mushrooms!")

                        1. re: sharebear

                          Welcome to my world...lots of "oops why did I buy that" happens around here. Welcome to the table.

                          1. re: sharebear

                            Welcome :) There's a handful of us flighty shoppers around. How can you know what you'll want for dinner on Thursday if it's only Sunday?

                            1. re: alliegator

                              That's why I pretty much shop every day.

                              1. re: linguafood

                                I do, too. I know it's not the best money-wise, but it's kind of a hobby.

                                  1. re: alliegator

                                    As someone who works from home, sometimes the grocery store is the only place for which I leave the house during the day, so.... it's also kinda part of my entertainment :-)

                                  2. re: linguafood

                                    Same here. I like to shop by mood and what looks good.

                                1. re: sharebear

                                  Yup. Definitely a hobby. In college sometimes when I was at home bored by myself I would go out and take a long walk... to the grocery store. And just wander up and down the aisles looking for interesting things.

                                  1. re: sharebear

                                    Haha, I do that everyday. I find it calming in a way. I'm not one to browse or walk slowly so it's actually a few minutes in a long day that I actually take time to breathe and relax.

                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                      LOL, "calming in a way." You know, when you compare to the cost of a mental health professional, your WF habit might actually be cost effective!

                              2. re: sharebear

                                Nice to have a new member at the table sharebear. Your meal sounds fantastic.

                                1. re: suzigirl

                                  Thank you! It's very nice to finally contribute to this thread, which has been a fantastic source of inspiration and information for my cooking explorations over the past few months.

                                  1. re: sharebear

                                    It is a fantastic place to get inspired. We often have "food waves"" where someone cooks something and it catches on and several people make over the next several days. It is pretty cool. Hope to see you around alot. It's nice to have fresh inspiration.

                                    1. re: suzigirl

                                      Just think of people at their dining tables doing The Wave across the country. :-)

                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                        Like the broccoli fritters! Someone please post recipe again - I need to copy it to my documents page. LOVE broccoli!

                                    1. re: sharebear

                                      How was the Colorado lamb? I would love to find a mild lamb I could tolerate too because I love the tender texture of lamb. Welcome to WFD.

                                      1. re: MamasCooking

                                        Thank you! It was quite good. I grew up on New Zealand lamb and always hated it, and was never aware how much milder US lamb is. It was indeed much less gamey than its down under counterpart.

                                        I cooked it medium rare (still quite pink in the middle as in the photo), which worked out because I found out lamb also tastes more gamey the more well-done it is. There was still a moment in the middle of chewing where I was juuuuuuuust borderline "oh ... ew that's lamb" but overall it was very nice.

                                         
                                        1. re: sharebear

                                          Welcome! That plate looks lovely. Beautiful presentation! I personally Love lamb, and the slight, to me, difference in flavor than other meats is what I love about it. Of course everyone has their own likes & dislikes. It's nice that you found the kind of lamb you were able to enjoy.

                                          1. re: sharebear

                                            Wow! Gorgeous plate, sharebear.

                                            Care to share, bear? :-)

                                            1. re: linguafood

                                              :D would that I could! I always make too much food for one and feeding others is one of my greatest happinesses in life. Not to mention I'm in a phase of trying new recipes / techniques / foods that I've never had so there is an overflow of food from my kitchen these days.

                                              1. re: sharebear

                                                Nicely done. Is that a mint puree at the bottom of the picture?

                                                1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                  It's actually leek puree - I had made chicken stock earlier in the afternoon & had a bunch of leftover leek tops that I felt bad about throwing away, so on a whim decided to cook them down in some of the chicken stock & run them through the processor. Though now that you mention it, mint would've been a great idea.

                                                  1. re: sharebear

                                                    You might consider stashing leek tops, after trimming, in the freezer for later use in stock, etc.

                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                      Very true. Usually I am better about keeping veggie ends for stock but found myself dangerously low on freezer space after taking a butchering class over the weekend and bringing home ~20lbs of various cuts of pork, thus had to decide... the chops or the leeks??? (chops won)

                                                      1. re: sharebear

                                                        Oh of course. Pork would win at our house too! I know how valuable freezer space is especially when I forget just how many poultry carcases I'm saving for stock..

                                                      2. re: Gio

                                                        rjbh20 will julienne the leek tops, braise, and use them as an underlayment for salmon. Very good.

                                                2. re: MamasCooking

                                                  Mama I never thought I liked lamb til I had a perfectly cooked (ie on the rare side of medium rare) Colorado lamb. But, like sharebear mentioned, the more it's cooked, the gamier it gets. The other night I did a small lamb roast that was thinner on one end, so it got more cooked. It was not good at all. But the other thicker end that was still medium rare was delightful.

                                                3. re: sharebear

                                                  yes, welcome, sharebear! look forward to seeing your Sunday feasts.

                                                4. We spent last night watching the Oscars (and critiquing all the bad singing - professional hazard when two opera singers marry!) and waiting for the storm that wasn't. I was dying for pasta but after pizzapopcornpalooza on Saturday we needed to keep it LC, so I just made a rich meat sauce with ground beef, San Marzano tomatoes, tomato paste, lots of garlic and herbs and a bit of wine, and served it over cut-up extra firm tofu.

                                                  I use extra firm tofu as a pasta sub in LC mac and cheese, but this was my first time trying it in this incarnation. It's not as good as it is in the mac and cheese, but it was tasty enough - when I mixed it all together with the meat sauce, it sort of reminded me of my mother's Chuckwagon chowder from my childhood, which was a tomato/meat sauce with macaroni (usually overcooked) in it. Comforting in a weird way!

                                                  Anyway, I was planning to make mapo tofu tonight, but since I used up my tofu yesterday, I'll have to go another direction. Maybe sausage and peppers. I am really having a hard time not making comfort food for every meal when it's so freaking cold all the time. COME ON SPRING!

                                                  6 Replies
                                                  1. re: biondanonima

                                                    Oh god, that frozen song? It reminded me of "goats that scream like people". And don't get me started on that whispery thang with the acoustic guitar. So, so precious....

                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                      Well, to be fair, Idina Menzel was probably thrown off by the fact that Jorn Tramonto (a.k.a. John Travolta) called her Adele Dazeem. :-/

                                                      But yeah - she was trying for the same over-the-topness as in the actually recording, and didn't get there.

                                                      The breathy whisper-song was a WTH moment.

                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                        I hadn't heard the Frozen song until last night - my husband made me listen to the recording from the movie first, just so I'd know what to expect. Even the STUDIO track sounds like goats screaming. Then he made me listen to the "pop" version recorded by Demi Lovado, and I found myself thinking "hm, this isn't half bad" - which just goes to show you how truly atrocious the original version is. The live version was just horrifying.

                                                        Opera singers are often accused of being snobs that can't appreciate other genres of singing, but that really isn't the case. There are GREAT musical theatre singers out there - she just wasn't one of them. The whispery thing with the guitar was a joke - that barely qualified as SPEAKING on pitch, let along singing! And Pink? Some (breath) where o (breath) ver the (breath) rain (breath) bow? Come on! She has a decent set of pipes but if you have to butcher the lyrics in that way you CANNOT SING THE SONG.

                                                        1. re: biondanonima

                                                          Menzel's over-emoting in the song reminds me of Celine Dion and thumping her chest during "My Heart Will Go On." Enough already.

                                                      2. re: biondanonima

                                                        I used those two performances for tidying my kitchen, haha! But Pink made up for them both.
                                                        Mapo tofu, my favorite use. Enjoy.

                                                        1. re: biondanonima

                                                          I love tofu with a chunky red sauce (meatless for me) and veggies for a quick meal- i usually just do slabs of pan fried (not really fried, just use a tsp or so oil) or baked 'fu, always the extra firm or TJs "high protein" since its very firm and doesn't need pressing

                                                        2. It is going to be a very easy dinner tonight...

                                                          Baby spinach salad with a hot bacon dressing

                                                          Hickory wood grilled pork chops with a spicy, chunky Honey Crisp apple sauce

                                                          Warm German potato salad

                                                          Roasted baby carrots with an orange juice and ginger sauce

                                                          My SO is picking up a pint of Haagen-Dazs ice cream on the way home from the office so that will be dessert.

                                                          12 Replies
                                                          1. re: Fowler

                                                            That doesn't sound particularly low-effort to me! Yum.

                                                              1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                Full disclosure...I do not have small children so it is not as though I have to get dinner on the table faster than a NASCAR pit stop before taking them to piano lessons, ski practice, etc.

                                                                1. re: Fowler

                                                                  Or before they meltdown into a puddle in their bouncy when you've tried to put them in front of Sesame Street for fifteen minutes.

                                                                  Not that I've done that.

                                                                  1. re: rabaja

                                                                    And speaking of meltdowns, never go to that ice cream shop in downtown Fairfax unless you really, REALLY want to see kids go into meltdown misbehavior mode.

                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                      Fairfax? As in Fairfax Ca.? In Marin Co.?

                                                                      1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                        Yep. Fairfax in Marin. I think rabaja mentioned to me a couple of years ago that they live in San Anselmo which is right next to Fairfax so that is why I mentioned it. Are you in Marin?

                                                                        1. re: Fowler

                                                                          I was born in San Rafael.I have family there still. I love the little towns like Fairfax,Larkspur and Ross.

                                                                          1. re: MamasCooking

                                                                            I also love the area. My Brother and Sister-in-Law live in Ross and two of my best friends live in Sausalito and Mill Valley.

                                                                            I could never live there because I would spend 24 hours a day at Emporio Rulli and never accomplish anything but getting fat.

                                                                            1. re: Fowler

                                                                              I could never live there because it is so expensive but what ambiance there is in Marin Co. Sausalito was so quaint back in the day.

                                                                      2. re: Fowler

                                                                        Too late, we're already addicted!
                                                                        I actually think the parents misbehave more than the children. Seeing that long line and then getting multiple samples?! Come on, people!

                                                                        Seriously, we love that place. We are on the San Anselmo/Fairfax border so we can walk there when the weather's good.

                                                                        1. re: rabaja

                                                                          Or one teenager getting in line and then just when they are about up to the counter their ten friends come in and skip to the front of the line and each has to try a sample of every flavor!

                                                                          Excellent ice cream though.

                                                            1. Ready to be done with these cold temperatures! Walking the hound in the morning at 2 degrees is getting old.

                                                              Tonight I'll be trying "vegan burgers that don't suck" from Serious Eats. Trying to get out of my rut of a recipe rotation. We'll see; I made his vegan "cheese" sauce yesterday and it's so-so at best.

                                                              8 Replies
                                                              1. re: gourmanda

                                                                I'm really digging the vegan series on SE. I made Kenji's mushroom bolognese for a dinner party with a few vegetarian guests a few weeks ago and it was a huge hit - though it was more time-consuming than I originally thought (I even roasted the eggplant a day ahead...)

                                                                1. re: sharebear

                                                                  Same with the "burgers". A lot of steps and ingredients, I hope they are worth it!

                                                                2. re: gourmanda

                                                                  What was "so-so" about the cheese sauce? It certainly looked delicious and creamy on the site.

                                                                  1. re: nothingswrong

                                                                    I agree it did look pretty good. I've got my eye on the smoked mushroom bacon.

                                                                  2. re: gourmanda

                                                                    I also lovelovelove the vegan series in SE, let us know how the burgers come out- there are a million ways to make veggie burgers....so if you don't like his don't give up ;)

                                                                    1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                      They were edible but not worth the time, effort or ingredients. I certainly didn't expect them to replicate a beef burger, but still...these weren't worth it. Perhaps if I worked the mixture together more and/or added a bit of flour? Dunno. They were too loose and too nutty. As to the cheese sauce...not sure where the color in that online picture came from, but it bears no resemblance to what is in my refrigerator. I'll try it on stuffed baked potatoes for dinner tomorrow, but don't hold high hopes. Admittedly I don't have a high end blender like a Vitamix and perhaps that would make a bit of difference. I'l report back on the sauce after tomorrow. If someone has a tried and true vegan "cheese" sauce I would love to try another recipe. Stay warm, my friends!

                                                                      1. re: gourmanda

                                                                        The Chow recipe for "sunshine burgers" is great and very easy.

                                                                        The PPK beet burgers are awesome - not as fast but just make a bnch and freeze
                                                                        http://www.theppk.com/2012/02/quarter...

                                                                        1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                          You've made the Sunshine Burgers? How was the texture on a sliding firm/crunchy to mushy scale? And the recipe says "Makes 2" and "shape into 6 patties"...are they Barbie-sized patties? Thanks for any insight!

                                                                  3. Sticking with the theme, having lamb and potato curry left over from yesterday's Malaysian cooking class. Far better than when I first cooked it. Must remember to make curries the day before and let it sit before eating.

                                                                    1. Long-time lurker here! First time poster. I had to post because I realized I kicked off March by braising my first-ever lamb shanks! I have still been craving warm foods since weather here is in the single digits. But still a "lamby" start to the month in some regard ;)

                                                                      Dinner tonight shall be leftovers! The lamb shanks were braised with tomatoes, wine, fennel seed, onion etc. and served with blue cheese polenta and balsamic brussels. Was supposed to be a romantic dinner with my fiance but he lives about an hour away and the weather was looking scary so I dined alone and froze half for him!

                                                                      7 Replies
                                                                      1. re: bustlingswan

                                                                        That sounds wonderful - braised lamb should freeze well I am sure he will appreciate. Welcome

                                                                        1. re: bustlingswan

                                                                          Those lamb shanks sound great! I might have to prod my man to make yuvetsi soon (braised lamb shanks with orzo).

                                                                            1. re: bustlingswan

                                                                              Yum! I love braised lamb shanks and that recipe sounds delicious. Do you have a link to share? Welcome to the table!

                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                Sure! I pretty much copied the whole meal (minus dessert) from the link below. It was delicious! And thank you for the welcoming!

                                                                                http://katieatthekitchendoor.com/2013...

                                                                              2. re: bustlingswan

                                                                                Sorry the weather put the kibosh on your lovely romantic meal. Sweet of you to freeze him some. Welcome to the table. I love new faces and good food.

                                                                                1. re: bustlingswan

                                                                                  Vilkommen, bienvenue, and yum on the lamb and that cheesy polenta!

                                                                                2. Tonight I'm planning to make Dunlop's fish-fragrant eggplant http://andrewzimmern.com/2013/03/28/f... (roasted instead of deep fried) and her bok choy with fresh shitake mushrooms http://www.vegkitchen.com/recipes/bok...

                                                                                  Will serve up over cauliflower rice in the hopes my jeans will stop rebelling.

                                                                                  p.s. finally made that kale salad!

                                                                                   
                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                      Thanks! The salad had a sorta Mediterranean/Middle Eastern bent with lemon-tahini-harissa-pomegranate molasses dressing, home pickled (fermented) beets, walnuts, diced apple, feta, chopped olives, thinly sliced scallion, and hard-boiled eggs. Sorta random (and a bit salty), but tasty.

                                                                                      The eggplant tonight was wonderful, but the bok choy was on the bland side, and I don't get the appeal of leaving the ginger in big coins. I'll try again with mincing the aromatics and adding a bit of light soy, perhaps. I made a mushroom broth with the shitake stems, scallions, garlic, ginger, and some dried shitake caps, strained, and stirred in some miso paste to make soup as a side.

                                                                                        1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                                          It is seriously so good and not very difficult. Rather than deep frying, I salted and steamed by eggplant batons a few minutes, then tossed 'em in melted coconut oil (which I melted right on the foil-covered roasting pan) and broiled until golden on both sides. Then just make the sauce per the directions and slip the eggplant in at the last couple minutes. Would have been delicious with rice, but it was also great on its own.

                                                                                        2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                          We Love Dunlop! Your dinner is perfetto!

                                                                                        3. Seems like a few people were interested in making hash with lamb. I've got leftover cooked roast beef sitting in my fridge and a Roast Beef Hash sounds delicious right now! Either that or roast beef sandwiches again tonight.

                                                                                          http://www.yummyreads.com

                                                                                          7 Replies
                                                                                          1. re: NancyChin

                                                                                            What's your recipe for hash, Nancy?

                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                              I was planning on doing this one: http://www.seriouseats.com/recipes/20...

                                                                                              It looks like a good recipe. But I was thinking of throwing the bowl of leftover gravy on top. Just to add even more flavor.

                                                                                              1. re: NancyChin

                                                                                                That looks very similar to what I made last time, and the addition of the cream is what messed it up for me. Never got the crispy-crunchies for the potatoes (although perhaps they also weren't diced as small as required in that recipe - 1/4" cubes?)

                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                  Thanks for the heads up! I was wondering about the addition of the heavy cream too, but it seems like that's how it was originally written in James Beard's cookbook. I will try my best not to touch it and wait for a crust to form (hopefully)!

                                                                                                  1. re: NancyChin

                                                                                                    Toss it out to hash makers - I think steve h. and roxlet/ rjbh20 have done so with success. I recall several people saying they hadn't added any cream, and it's not the way I recall having had it in diners. But I also wasn't there when the diner cook was making my hash, so I didn't know! LOL

                                                                                                    1. re: NancyChin

                                                                                                      I love that recipe and make it with the cream quite successfully. The skillet I use is very large so the cream didn't form such a thick layer that crisping was impeded.

                                                                                                      Perhaps I should do it again just to confirm!

                                                                                                      1. re: tcamp

                                                                                                        OK, that could very well be the issue I had with it, tcamp. I was trying to make it for one so I used a small skillet. Perhaps a larger one and spreading the hash out to a thin layer would help.

                                                                                            2. Quick and easy that uses leftover chicken are tonight's parameters. I'm thinking about doctoring up some jarred tikka masala sauce, adding lots of various diced veggies to cook through and then the chicken at the end. I'll serve it over cauliflower rice and call it a day.

                                                                                              1. Last night's early dinner of Marinara pie was quite good. I'm not going to smile like a pageant girl and say I didn't miss the cheese, because I did. But just dining out was wonderful. I plan to do it again this week.
                                                                                                For Oscar snacks, I just made a bunch of the nuker soft pretzel sticks with cheese dip for they guys, and hot sauce for me. Not bad.
                                                                                                Tonight I'm just doing a very basic and vaguely pho inspired Food Network recipe, chicken intsead of beef:
                                                                                                http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/fo...
                                                                                                I'm sure I'll stray from it and come up with something totally different. But, more TV! Juan Pablo will finally choose his unlucky lady on Bachelor.

                                                                                                1. Nigella Lawson's Roast Lamb for One is on the agenda for tonight. Here in Northern NJ we dodged the bullet on snow that was supposed to fall yesterday into this morning - nary a sprinkle! Hooray! let's hope it's the start of a trend.

                                                                                                  The roast lamb is an experiment; in the past I've only ever braised shanks, but my teeth still work, and I have sharp knives. :)

                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                  1. re: mcsheridan

                                                                                                    Results of "experiment": amazingly tender given the cut and cooking Time/temp. Very tasty. One caveat for anyone thinking of making it: Don't add the marinade to the roasting tin as called for in the recipe. Within 25 mins I had to transfer the shank to another pan before my smoke alarm went off, and I spent a good long time scrubbing out burnt port marinade after dinner.

                                                                                                  2. So happy the storm missed us but we had changed our plans based on the forecast. Today is our anniversary (Monday ugh) but we bagged going out last night to celebrate and changed our rez at the French place to last Friday with a low end bar meal of burger and frites- there was wine by the carafe and a killer bread basket- not too shabby!
                                                                                                    Tonight I'm making chicken tikka masala using a jar of Tiger Tiger for the curry sauce. White rice, peas and nan courtesy of TJ's.
                                                                                                    I'm planning to take refuge in the lenten journey and lose some weight so I am signing off for 40 days.
                                                                                                    Ciao chowhound friends!

                                                                                                    5 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                      What? No Berheenia at all for 40 days? Sadz. :-(

                                                                                                      ETA: And Happy Anniversary!

                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                        Hop over to the Weight Watchers board, Berheenia!

                                                                                                        1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                          Oh no I assume you'll be eating in those 40 days, we'd all love to hear I'm sure. Best of luck on your journey.

                                                                                                          1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                            Happy anniversary, Berheenia. We want to see you after your hiatus.

                                                                                                            1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                              happy anniversary, but no fair on no posts for 40 days!

                                                                                                              40 days and 40 nights, we shall wander through the dessert (pun intended) of CH without you.... heh.

                                                                                                            2. Finally decided to stop lurking and start contributing here. I have enjoyed your conversations and cooking for years, so thank you all!

                                                                                                              Last night’s happy hour was popcorn, prosciutto, and peppered salami during the Oscar arrivals. A glass of Cab Franc for me and a Golden Road Wolf in the Weeds IPA for DH. Mains were turkey meat loaf, baguette, and green salad. Tonight we are heading to our favorite watering hole since they just tapped a keg of DH’s favorite IPA. I’m sure he would happily subsist on IPA alone, but we will probably share a few apps (pulled pork dumplings anyone?) and maybe the Monday night fried chicken special. Of course, this means a Tuesday morning treadmill session.

                                                                                                              10 Replies
                                                                                                              1. re: Aussieshepsx2

                                                                                                                Welcome! By your CH name, I'm going to assume you have a couple of Australian shepherd dogs? :-)

                                                                                                                Your happy hour and your app/dinner tonight sound great!

                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                  Thanks for the welcome. Yes, we have always had Australian Shepherds, and currently have two brothers! They are full of energy and keep us busy.

                                                                                                                  1. re: Aussieshepsx2

                                                                                                                    A friend has one (along with 2 cats and a 3 mo. old infant son!), and she just loves her to pieces. And the dog is infatuated with the baby. :-)

                                                                                                                  1. re: Aussieshepsx2

                                                                                                                    Lots of new fellow food fans at the table today. Glad to have you. Your Oscar eats sound great.

                                                                                                                    1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                      We're gonna have to add another leaf to the table!

                                                                                                                      1. re: Aussieshepsx2

                                                                                                                        Welcome! I love that all these newcomers are popping in. I hope y'all will stick around for a while :)

                                                                                                                        1. re: Aussieshepsx2

                                                                                                                          ooh, another one at table! this is becoming quite the dinner party!

                                                                                                                          i'll bring more bubbly.

                                                                                                                        2. Sweet & Sour Pork, with green pepper, onions, pineapple on rice, with cashews. Can it really have been a year since I last made this? Recipe I paraphrased last year is here
                                                                                                                          http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8955...

                                                                                                                          Tomorrow I want to try making Jerk Chicken, toned down by omission of Scotch Bonnet peppers from the marinade/sauce.

                                                                                                                          1. It's cold and getting colder. Comfort food will be front and center.

                                                                                                                            Spaghetti and meatballs tonight. The sauce is homemade, the meatballs a labor of love (house ground chuck plus veal and pork). Rao's meatball recipe was the inspiration. Decent Parmigiano Reggiano will be available as a topper. House red will wash things down. Haven't decided on tonight's viewing but it will be something bloody.

                                                                                                                            Stay warm. Weather happens.

                                                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                                                                      1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                        Congratulation!

                                                                                                                                        Ooops. I mean, um, it looks great.

                                                                                                                                  1. Am i the only one not making or eating lamb??????!

                                                                                                                                    Last night i made a huge batch of massaged kale salad, its always better a day or more later so will be part of dinner tonight. Massaged with olive oil and lemon juice, kosher salt and black pepper. Added in red bell pepper, cherry tomatoes, kalamata olives, shredded carrots, shredded raw beet, some chopped scallion. Tonight i'll add some baked tempeh cubes and avocado if the damned thing is ripe yet. Glass of moscato a la carte.

                                                                                                                                    12 Replies
                                                                                                                                    1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                      I feel left out too, I might need some lamb in my life this week.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                        I love when someone mentions something and it catches on like a wildfire.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                          I'm going to leave my lamb in the field, although from the sound of it she may get lonely....

                                                                                                                                        2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                          I've never had lamb so no you are not alone.

                                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                I'll admit to being a non-lover of lamb. Didn't grow up eating it and find it too gamey for me.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                  It's definitely in the love it or hate it bucket.

                                                                                                                                                  I'm obviously in the <3 it camp. :-)

                                                                                                                                              2. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                I don't think i have either.....but i've been veg for 20+ yrs so odds are i never will.

                                                                                                                                              3. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                Fun, we ended up with kind of similar salads.

                                                                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                  I was so excited my avocado was ripe!! It was a great combo

                                                                                                                                                2. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                  I was wondering that too! I am going to put on the menu for the weekend. I love lamb.

                                                                                                                                                3. Well, today my client called to tell me her husband was stricken with Harters sad chest infection and since she has COPD I want her to take it easy so she also doesn't get sick and end up in the hospital. I made them a casserole of broccoli, seasoned ground beef and scalloped potatoes by her request when I chided her about getting sick and keeping up her strength to take care of him. I also doubled my dinner of stuffed peppers to bring her some and I am taking them some blood oranges. I should have gotten a rotisserie chicken and made soup now that I think about it. I was just thinking peppers are a strong flavor. Leftover smothered green beans to go with the (orange) peppers. I forgot to mention she asked for the casserole because I told her I would make her anything with broccoli.

                                                                                                                                                  19 Replies
                                                                                                                                                  1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                    So nice of you, I'm sure they enjoyed and are very appreciative.

                                                                                                                                                    1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                      She and her husband are like my grandparents. How could I not?

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                        I took a pic of the tater casserole before I paced it up but forgot to take pics before I packed her stuffed peppers up. I will grab a shot of ours when they come out.

                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                          I have over 40 brain tonight. I put James' lunch together before I remembered to take a pic of our peppers so we are absent one orange pepper packed for lunch and the baby pepper is from a bell pepper James forgot to pull months ago that eeked out one last tiny pepper. It was just my size.

                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                          Hahahaha, little does she know you're just trying to pawn off broccoli on her... you sly gardener!

                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                              I've had some nice clients in my time but none I've felt the urge to cook for, you're too kind.

                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Frizzle

                                                                                                                                                                I clean every other week and shop and run her errands every week. We go out to lunch now and then. She's family. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                  That's so awesome. They're very lucky to have you around :)

                                                                                                                                                              2. Tonight it's a pasta and greens dish originally inspired by a Molly Katzen recipe I saw on TV years and years ago.

                                                                                                                                                                Of course Molly Katzen didn't use the sausage...

                                                                                                                                                                I don't really have quantities; I kinda make it up as I go...

                                                                                                                                                                fusilli
                                                                                                                                                                italian sausage
                                                                                                                                                                onion
                                                                                                                                                                garlic
                                                                                                                                                                swiss chard or kale
                                                                                                                                                                feta cheese
                                                                                                                                                                parm. cheese

                                                                                                                                                                while the pasta water comes to a boil, start browning the sausage, then add the onions, and garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                Add the greens,. Drain the pasta and add to sausage/greens; toss for a few minutes. Add feta, toss again.

                                                                                                                                                                Serve with grated parm.

                                                                                                                                                                p.s. It's also very good cold the next day with a little balsamic vinegar

                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: kcshigekawa

                                                                                                                                                                  I love the make it up as you go attitude. That is how many of us cook here. Your dinner sounds great.

                                                                                                                                                                  1. It bloody icky cold here again/still. And it was one of those days where I started at 6 and finished more than 12 hours later...and it was one of those days that I desperately wish I lived someplace had delivery options. The one place that delivers pizza (but only depending on who is working) is closed on Mondays. Sigh. So I drove to the excellent Italian grocery store and grabbed a couple of slices of pepperoni pizza. Came home, threw them into the toaster oven, poured a very (VERY) large glass of Sauv Blanc. Yes, it was one of those days.

                                                                                                                                                                    Off on yet another business trip tomorrow, so WFD for the next couple of nights is dinner out. I'm sure I'll spend at least one meal at my favorite wine bar. I'll be jealously be reading about all your delicious home-cooked meals in the meantime.

                                                                                                                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                                      It sounds like you had a perfect dinner. The thought of employee-dependent delivery gave me a nice chuckle though I imagine it's frustrating for you. I don't have many delivery options either but I can always count on pizza of some sort.

                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                                        Sorry it was one of those days. Here's to better tomorrow for you.

                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks, suzigirl. In the grand scheme of things, it's not even a blip. It's just nice to feel a little pathetic every once in a while. ;0)

                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                                          "at least one meal at my favorite wine bar. "
                                                                                                                                                                          Hahaha- liquid dinner????
                                                                                                                                                                          ;)

                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                                                                                                                                            LOL, it's tempting sometimes. But no, the wine bar does have a small plates menu, too. :0)

                                                                                                                                                                        3. We're back from vacation, but I do not wish to be back. I wish to still be out in the Sierras. LA, Bishop, and San Diego were all wonderful. We got some great climbing in, did a rest day where we hopped from natural hot spring to natural hot spring, and even ate a bit of delicious food here and there.

                                                                                                                                                                          At the cabin (which sat at 8300 feet in elevation), we cooked such wonders as cornmeal pancakes, millionaire's bacon, smokey Incan stew, pesto soup, and tacos. By the way, cooking on an electric stove is hell. I salute all of you who do it regularly. It did bake a nice pie though.

                                                                                                                                                                          Now that we're back, I pulled some frozen marinara from the freezer, seared up some spicy sausage, and threw that over a little sauteed spinach with onions and garlic.

                                                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: gini

                                                                                                                                                                            I want a gas stove top and an electric oven. I'll never have it, but I want it.

                                                                                                                                                                            Glad you had a good vacation!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: gini

                                                                                                                                                                              Incan stew? please do tell... my peeps, you know...

                                                                                                                                                                              glad you had a nice vacay!

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                It's from the vegan cookbook "Isa Does it". I can't seem to find the recipe online.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. Finally made the pork chops tonight, along with a simple salad and pasta. Then we played Dominion for a bit, which we just introduced my fiance to today.... I tried to get him to play a few years ago, but he thought it looked too "nerdy". He's totally hooked now! :D

                                                                                                                                                                                I just put my first ever batch of chicken stock in the slow cooker. I'm excited!

                                                                                                                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Kontxesi

                                                                                                                                                                                  Good luck with the stock! Stock in the slow cooker is now on the weekly to do list every Thursday. It's my favorite bedtime drink in winter.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Kontxesi

                                                                                                                                                                                    Slow cooker stock is my all-time favorite tip from Chowhound! It's been years now, and my freezer has been full of homemade stock ever since.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Kontxesi

                                                                                                                                                                                      Slow cooker chicken stock is the only way to go. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Monday nite scrounge resulted in pork and green chile stew with hominy. Remarkably successful for a total throw-together and a good dish for yet another cold evening.

                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                      16 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                        I was chilled all day, so this was delicious and so warming.

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks. I prefer the weather there.

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                            Absolutely my favorite stew. Your rendition looks fantastic.

                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                                                                                                                                              No idea if it's authentic or not -- never made it before I don't think-- but it tasted good. Aided no doubt by a can of PBR for the braising liquid.

                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                No wonder I felt the need to hit recommend. PBR. And the scavenger aspect.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                  The stews I have seen were more dense with vegetables: potato, corn, and green chiles. But none of them had such nice pork, either. It's homey cooking. New Mexico has always been a poor state and it's not a showcase for high grade meat but they are fanatical about the green chiles.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I have not been in New Mexico for many years but I am sure the hipster community would salute the PBR braise.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                    "Aided no doubt by a can of PBR for the braising liquid."

                                                                                                                                                                                                    The "Bordeaux" from the Left Bank of the Milwaukee River.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Is that similar to "Chateau Left Bank of the Thames"?

                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Would love to hear how you made it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Not much to it and, again, no attempt at authenticity.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Two pork cushions from the freezer cut in to large cubes & seared in cast iron. Sweated onion, garlic & julienned serranos. Toss in the swine (deglaze the pan, of course) & a PBR, braise until almost done. Add a drained can of white hominy, simmer for another 5 minutes or so, season & plate. Chopped cilantro on top. Avocado would have been good too, but it wasn't ripe. Corn tortillas would have been good but the ones from the fridge were crappy, so flour tortillas instead. Ta-daa.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                    hominy just give such a homey taste to meals. grew up eating a lot of it. love it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hominy is one food I've yet to try. It should be on my To Try list for 2014. I have a Pork and Green Chili Stew Grace Parisi recipe in my Pepperplate account and she just uses pork shoulder cubes, poblano or anaheim chilies, and jalepenos, w chicken as the braising liquid with a garnish of cilantro. She suggests lime wedges, warm tortillas, and rice as sides. Inspired by rjbh20 it just went on my menu planner for next week.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      ETA: The last time we roasted a fresh ham we used Sam Adams Double Agent India Pale Lager in the roasting pan. What a fab flavor the ham had.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. My mega mart had a great deal on NY strip steaks if you bought the whole bag. Which I did, knowing I could trim/slice to my content and the food savor to the freezer. And then I left it in the garage overnight cause my fridge was full and it was 22 degrees F in the garage. . .a 16 pound meat club.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        I was able to make fridge space and trim it down, and we had a great sous vide strip out of the results, but I was pretty worried for a while

                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Last of the short ribs but the real adventure was turning yesterday's pate a chaux dough into Parisienne gnocchi.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          This entailed putting the dough in a zip bag with a small cut in the corner. I piped it into boiling water for a few minutes and drained. Final step was a quick sautée in butter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Also featuring buttered spinach.

                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                              They were really good and not hard. Someone on another board expressed fondness for the French and their "reckless disregard of the dangers of butter." The gnocchi are a case study, and replacing cornmeal or potatoes on my plate with a pastry dough seems reckless. I'm going to freeze the remainder and use with vegetables or fish.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. a meaty fest tonight. i snagged the last fully-cooked pork belly at TJs that everyone's been talking about on the TJ thread. i thought it would be kind of an appetizer, so i also made some steak (some kind of filet that was on sale) and a bit of jasmine rice with cilantro, lime juice, shallots and scallions. for the pork belly i made a glaze of gochujang, blood orange juice, dark soy, brown sugar, lime juice and granulated garlic, and for the steak a quick sauce of just lime juice and soy sauce. both were really good. i would have liked the pork belly to be a bit fattier (yes, that's how i am) but overall i really liked it. people on the TJ thread were complaining that it didn't have much flavor, so i'm glad i made the glaze. it was super tasty. loved the easy sauce for the steak, too. also made a side salad of iceberg, red cabbage, scallions, rice wine vinegar and sesame seeds. i'm not a super fan of the lime rice, though i keep trying it. but the BF liked it. a whole piece of steak leftover for the BF's dinner tomorrow night while i'm on Oldster duty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  we're finding out that having him in a rehab facility while he mends does not mean we are going to get any more downtime, really, than before. he's needier than ever and they just don't really know how to care for him yet. maybe things will settle down in a couple weeks. but for now... more of the same. good thing my job is so incredibly supportive and will let me take as much time off as i need.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  i see lots of vino in my future...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  10 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Yay for supportive work environment! Such a huge help when you're dealing with this type of situation. I work for doctors who are perhaps unsurprisingly also very understanding of my own oldster duties.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    WFD tonight was a potentially bad brainwave -- I'd been craving the Mesa grits, and I had a smallish packet of chicken wings that I either had to use or freeze. So I did the "grits" with my usual oven-baked spicy wings. Carrost (nod to The Big Snit which we rewatched with the little niece on Sat) stix added a semblance of vegetable. It were good.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The dinner looks great. Eat well so you can stay well and drink that vino. The type of stress that goes along with our elderly loved ones being ill can be exhausting. Pamper yourself when you can.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Wow looks incredible. We've come to the conclusion with my mom. It'd probably easier to have her in a facility instead of at home since finding and keeping caretakers is near impossible but my dad and I fear it wouldn't actually make it any easier. Hopefully you and your sister can work out a schedule to give each other needed breaks. No offense to my mom but after 48 hours of MS I need a break :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          we're definitely taking turns but since I have the "real" job, she gets the brunt of taking care of our dad. this rehab facility is supposed to be temporary - a few weeks. we'll see... I totally get you on the needing a break, though....

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Yea, even though the loved ones are the center of attention and should be it's always best to also look out for our own well-beings. As an only child, I have to remind myself of this since there's I don't have a tag team partner. Fingers crossed that the rehab facility is temporary.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Wow - how did you get that first picture (the slaw) at the top of your post and so big? (Or maybe that's just a glitch right now and it'll correct after I post this response.) Your dinner looks wonderful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            As for your Oldster, I'm very glad your workplace is giving you the time to help him out. Such a relief for you, I'm sure, that you have that support.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Responding to myself - looks like there were more changes, per DaveMP. From his thread on Site Talk:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/967551

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1) We are now displaying larger photos in original posts and top-level replies, both on discussions and workshops. The first photo you upload will appear full width, and subsequent photos will be displayed as thumbnails. Photos uploaded to lower-level replies will still be displayed only as thumbnails. The photo modal will continue to work the same way.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              So have that finished plate be the first photo uploaded! LOL

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                when I first posted it, it looked like the salad pic didn't even post.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              You're so incredibly sweet to ten to oldster so carefully!
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And the food! My lick the screen moment of the week :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            3. It's Pancake Day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The conversation went something like this:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Her - "Would you like pancakes for dessert this evening, or American pancakes for breakfast?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Him - "Can't we have both - I'm unwell and need to keep my strength up?"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Her (firmly) - "No."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              So, that was American pancakes for breakfast, then.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              As for, WFD - pasta and meat sauce

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              33 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Had a similar conversation with the missus this am.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Myself- You know what day it is today

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Missus- ooh pancake day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Myself- don't forget I'll be late home.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Missus- I'll get ready made pancakes

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Myself- you can't have ready made on pancake day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Missus- don't worry they'll be American pancakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Myself- you've got to have proper pancakes on pancake day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Missus-pancakes is pancakes and anyway we've got maple syrup.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                So American pancakes and maple syrup it is.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Paprikaboy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sometimes, you just know when you're on a loser, mate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  We usually also buy American pancakes (pck of 4) and nuke them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  For normal pancakes, I use St Delia's recipe:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  110g flour
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2 eggs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  200ml milk
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  75ml water

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Mix flour & eggs and gradually add the liquid. Looks a right mess at first but always comes together. She says it makes 12 - 14 but I must have a bigger pan as I get no more than 8. Still, four each is not too shabby. Sugar & squeeze of lemon of course.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Wait -- you buy pre-made pancakes?! They're such a cinch to make. Nothing to it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      LOLZZZ...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      You would think so, but an engineering friend who is on loan to Bilstien AG in Germany has found the same packaged "American" pancakes as found by Harters et all and the rest of the UK.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I guess it's a trend.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        My supermarket usually has American style "big" pancakes from Genesis Crafty - a bakery in Northern Ireland:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        http://www.genesiscrafty.com/baked-by...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          OMG that is too funny - they're actually CALLED American Pancakes!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Yes, we call them "American pancakes" to distinguish them from normal pancakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              OK, "normal pancakes" are....? Like dessert crepes?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Pancakes in Germany are generally much thinner and bigger and yes, more resembling a crèpe. Not sure what the UK variety is like :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yes, the French and Americans call them crepes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think that, in northern Europe, we have a different etymology. Google Translate helps me out with examples:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  English/Dutch/Gernam/Swedish -

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Pancake/pannenkoek/pfannkuchen/pannkaka

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Same animal in my experience. Much thinner and bigger in diameter than American ones. The nearest thing we have in British cuisine to an American pancake is the drop scone (or Scotch pancake) - something perhaps served for afternoon tea. I'm not sure if other European countries have something similar to an American pancake.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    OK, thanks. I've heard of pannkaka (have a friend who is Finnish by heritage and she sometimes makes these - she calls them pannukakku).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Do you (Brits) fill them with something? Or spread something on them, like a chocolate hazelnut spread (Nutella)?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Yes, there's all sorts of fillings and preparations, but the traditional British prep is simply to sprinkle with sugar and squeeze of lemon. Nutella is a killer spread, through and I'm happy to spread jam on them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Dutch are much better at it than we are - they do savoury ones as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Years back, we used to do a recipe called "crepe Normande". You need something like 10 pancakes which you layer up with apple puree between them, so you have something of a cake. Needs a quick warm through in the oven, before serving yourself a slice. Ice-cream goes very well with it. Had similarish in the Netherlands, also years back just two pancakes, with fried apple slices between.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Curious whether "Glouchester pancakes" are on your radar at all? I had them at a British restaurant in Montreal (of all places) and they were more like a thin scone or Southern-style biscuit. I believe it was made with suet. Tasty little thing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Never heard of Gloucester pancakes but the internet throws up a recipe - http://www.foodsofengland.co.uk/glouc...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I suspect it's origins may be quite old. Gloucestershire used to be BIG sheep country, so there'd have been lots of suet available. And the sugar free suggests a time when sugar was expensive. Just guesses on my part.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Ah, that's interesting to know about sheep country. Makes sense. I had seen the recipes, but nothing about the origin and was quite curious as I had never heard of them before. Thank you, Harters!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            (They are quite tasty slathered in butter then drizzled with maple syrup!)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: TorontoJo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              If you're at the Brit place again, ask if they have "Welsh cakes". Similar sort of thin scone affair. No suet, but with sugar and raisins. Delicious

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I will. It was one of my favourite meals in Montreal (my friends and I shared the entire menu) and I'll happily go back on my next visit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          the Brit way - lemon & sugar - is my absolute fave. I had a Swedish woman as a landlady once and she made them for me. soooooo good. I much prefer crepes to pancakes. fat pancakes never did it for me - even as a kid, i'd ask my mom to make mine as thin as possible.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            My father used to make Saturday Breakfast. "Flap Jacks" as thick as possible. LOL. They were delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              mariacarmen, that's my favorite way too. Lived in Norway for a while and we would go up in the mountains to pick wild blueberries specifically for pancakes. I loved the blueberries (so much better than cultivated) but lemon and sugar was the best. Haven't made them in forever. Got a craving now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'm not getting it - you're buying pre-made pancakes? Why not just make them yourself?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'm not good in the kitchen in the morning so, on the rare occasions that I have American pancakes for breakfast, it's just easier to get them out of the freezer and nuke them. By the by, I only buy them when they are very cheap due to being near to "use by" date.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Wouldnt dream of not properly cooking normal pancakes at dinner time. Or, indeed, not properly cooking American pancakes on Pancake Day

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I'll let PB explain Mrs PB's similar attitude to American pancakes.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                By the by, if they are such a cinch, why do we see Chow threads about folks using boxed/bottled pancake mixes? ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I can't make a pancake to save my life. SO loves them and fortunately his mom makes a giant batch and freezes them when she visits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    OK, fair enough.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And I'll admit - the boxed pancake mixes are what I'm talking about. I don't start from flour and baking powder/soda or whatever is used for leavening. :-) I usually use something like this:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    http://www.maplegrove.com/products/ba...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      TJs makes a killer multigrain pancake mix. Any nutritional benefit from it being multigrain I immediately cancel out by adding a truckload of chocolate chips into the batter, of course. Yum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: sharebear

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I'll have to remember that next time I go to TJs. Just dropped $85 there this past weekend. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I don't understand using mixes with preservatives and hydrogenated oils for such a simple, wholesome food. Yuck. They aren't difficult at all (the first one in the pan always turns out a bit bad).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      These (American) pancake recipes are reportedly good:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.marthastewart.com/318689/b...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://www.joyofbaking.com/breakfast/...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I usually use a recipe from Cook's Illustrated:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      http://breakfast.food.com/recipe/cook...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        hah - my mom and sister had a joke - "you always throw the first one away" - referring to me, the first born!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        How do packaged American pancakes taste?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          "I'll let PB explain Mrs PB's similar attitude to American pancakes."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Generally I do savoury and Mrs PB does sweet. That's apart from American pancakes which I always make. I suppose as I was going to be late it was easier to buy ready made. Why was I late home I hear you ask. Well I ran two miles to a childrens playground (with my running group) spent an hour shifting rubble in a wheelbarrow and then ran 3,5 miles home. And was there any pancakes ready made , American or otherwise when I got home? No there bloody well was not. TBF to the missus she had severe train trouble. Next year I'll make them for breakfast.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Paprikaboy

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I feel for your pancake loss, PB.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    3. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      We had homemade American style pancakes for pudding this evening, with lemon and blueberries folded into the mixture, and maple syrup with. Yum!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    4. Last night we had marinara with angel hair pasta, salad and garlic bread.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Tonight we're having muffaletta sandwiches (on home made focaccia bread) and salad. Guess I'm in an Italian phase right now.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: thymetobake

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Actually Muffaletta is Perfect for Mardi Gras!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Hadn't thought of that. Thanks for the reminder.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Vis a vis Harters and Paprikaboy's conversation: I used to "do" Pancake Day but since I really don't like sweets I would cook Okonomiyaki. After a few years Himself told me he hated them. So tonight we're having roast chicken and vegetables, and L/O wild rice salad of a couple of nights ago. Laissez les bon temps roller!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. Man, I've been on a minimal cooking spree for the past few days. Various events have kept us out of the house at dinner time. Yesterday I kept myself busy making gallons of kombucha, banana bread, stock, and soup so by dinner time I was not hungry or interested in cooking anything. Thus we had baked, breaded chicken tenders, butter/soy sauce fried rice, and green beans.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Tonight, dinner meeting so the family is on their own. I need to alert DH of Pancake Day.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Well, last night’s plan to grab a glass of the newly tapped beer did not work out since they sold out in 6 hours. So, we decided to stay in and finish up the leftover grilled sausages and polenta from Saturday’s dinner party. Had a side of broccoli/cauliflower soup blitzed up in the Vitamix. Two glasses of Cab Franc and the Kings game to top it off.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Tonight was supposed to be a networking event but it just got cancelled (yeah!). Dinner will likely be take-out tacos and taquitos for our weekly no cook taco Tuesday.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. We are hosting another couple tonight for dinner. The menu looks like this...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Toasted slices of baguette with a basil based pesto

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Salad with mixed greens, peas, chèvre cheese and a balsamic vinaigrette

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Roasted butternut squash and bacon bisque

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Chicken breasts stuffed with roasted red peppers, roasted garlic, herbs and Gouda cheese

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              The guests said they will bring the dessert, thank goodness!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. tonight I am grateful for some things I made ahead

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                beef shank braised in red wine based on an earlier CH thread that I made in the slow cooker with literally no effort last weekend and some crusty bread I made yesterday for dipping probably with a simple salad and maybe some boiled potatoes should make a nice warm peasant-fare dinner for this VERY cold night - and I don't have to do much more than warm it up and uncork a bottle of Rhone.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                most days I love to cook but tonight I just need to relax

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Tonight's dinner needs to be fast, as I'm volunteering after work per usual and have a cooking project on tap for later. We'll have leftover rosemary pork loin from the freezer and portabellas stuffed with a mix of gorgonzola, parm., cream cheese, and chopped spinach and broiled. Maybe another veg. from the crisper drawer if anything looks decent---I'm thinking cucumber-dill salad in sour cream.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  The project, which I'm much more excited about, is cooking for old friends who just had a baby (I swear, something's in the water here). I had a big Chinese menu planned, but momma ain't doing spicy, so that went out the window. Instead, keeping it simple:

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Caesar salad w/ grilled chicken strips, homemade croutons and creamy lemony dressing, grape tomatoes, and optional tortilla wraps (for one-handed meals)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Roasted butternut squash soup, with pumpkin seed oil for drizzling and toasted pepitas

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Browned butter and pecan blondies, with Brewer's yeast and flax for lactation

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Blueberry-lemon scones with maple glaze

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Bagelwiches with gouda, egg, and sliced turkey

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  -Bottles of local white wine, strawberry kefir, and soda water.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    "Roasted butternut squash soup, with pumpkin seed oil for drizzling and toasted pepitas"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I think you are just trying to "one-up" me. And it is working! :-) Your menu sounds wonderful.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hey, yours has bacon. Bacon always wins.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I see a cookbook in your future, CM. Something along the lines of, " Meals for New Parents."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Um...best laid plans...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        DH worked late, I volunteered late--dinner ended up being shrimp seared with garlic and shallot in butter and olive oil with hot chili flakes, tossed with a sauce of leftover spicy red pepper marinara and a can of diced tomatoes, lots of tomato paste, half and half, and boiled three-cheese ravioli. I simmered some fresh rosemary in the sauce and added a splash of vodka and palmful of fresh chopped parsley for good measure. Served up with a good Microplaning of Parm. Regg. Easy peasy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A bit tired, I've decided to finish the new-parent cooking tomorrow. Pastis and water over ice...two actually...for dessert. DH has promised a sampling of some of his sour beers to decide if they are "competition worthy." I'm game.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Sounds like a nice end to the night, I am game too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. My soup never materialized last night as I needed to go get a fill on one of Pap's old guy pills. That swallowed up a good hour, so I just repeated turkey burgers. Tomato and basil again, I love that flavor. The vaguely pho like soup will happen tonight. I poached and shredded some chicken breasts earlier today.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Tomorrow, I'm going to try my hand at lahmajoun (or however you want to spell it). I've seen on the tube and in mags, now it's time to try. With ground turkey, though. I found this recipe:
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://arbuz.com/recipes/lahmacun-recipe
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Excited to give it a whirl. I really hope it works!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Damn It. I think I'm coming down with a cold.... awesome timing with 3 gigs this week. Not.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            So I've been sucking down Airborne and snacking on sudafed :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Dinner tonight will be whatever's on the gay bar's menu -- I've heard rumors of red beans & rice as well as oyster shooters. I can groove to the latter, hope they're spicy and knock my sinuses in place. Fingers crossed.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. Please note, that while I LOVE you all. I equally hate this thread and the mind games it plays. LOLZ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              On the way home I stopped at my local butcher for some house made hot Italian and Hungarian sausages and inquired re: beef ribs as I have not made them since Christmas time and the store bought ones are far more bone than meat as we have discussed here in HC ad nauseum.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Due to brisket buyers and other primal cut demands, he threw two beef rib racks in the freezer last nite at closing he said.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              But he needs the freezer space.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Cue haggling---- ( I shop there weekly) ...and out the door---- if I bought them all for $1.75 lb. Under $20 with tax.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Sold.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I'll take it. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Now what to do with 10 lbs of beef ribs with quite a bit of meat on them.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hmmmmm.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Damn that thread this morning about cooking baby back ribs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              And yes, that is a 12" x18" 1/3 sheet pan underneath things. So 1 metre of ribs laid end to end. Egads!!!!!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Now what to do.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              8 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  So it is written. So it shall be done. LOL.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I buried this back here mainly because it's not goning to be WFD for tonite, but with a 1/2 day and some time, a quick rub that included coffee, ground anchos and lotsa other goodies, off into the Brinkmann smoker they now sit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I was gifted this elec. Brinkmann years and years ago by a neighbor who somehow came to hate smokey foods and it's awesome for winter and shoulder season smoking. Yeah--it's pseudo cheating--so sue me.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I suill use chunk apple and hickory in it so it's still a killer smoker.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I run a Treager and UDS in the summer -but those need lots of TLC. And time. Wait? Did I same time and TLC.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I'll report back with pics at the top when for dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Pics of the current beef ribs at work and then two hens I smoked last fall.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  It's a cheap and awesome set and forget smoker.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  And I;m such a geek I made a thermal blanket ushanka (Russian furry hat) for it to keep the heat in during winter smoking. And a thermal wrap with velcro as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Yeah.....I'm not right. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Be still my beating heart.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    And I'll need a picture of the smoker wearing the ushanka or it didn't happen!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChrisOfStumptown

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Ushanka and velcro thermal wrap during storage in "full effect." pics added.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Usually the ushanka will keep temps at a steady 250F around freezing and is all I need.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Wrap comes out around 0 degrees F
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Flap cut in top for handle and extra probe therm. I added.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I call it the R2 D2 Unit a la' Star Wars because when you toss it in the passenger seat of a 2 seat convertible with the top down it sits about the right height that just the top dome sticks up above the door edge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It gets lotsa strange looks that way. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      A LOT of strange looks.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Ohhhh, what rjbh20 could do with those ribs!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bet your ass. Watch this weekend when temps are threatening to reach 50s

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I seriously need to mosey on down your way one weekend when I see the Smoke Signal up in the sky. "Oh, I was just driving by...."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Just look for the Whole Hog Productions barbecue flag

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3. Chicken soup is on cooking (it smells wonderful); haven't decided if going to add rice or egg noodles. Homemade, fresh bread is rising.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Big giant muffaletta with salami, serrano ham, provolone and sharp cheddar cheese and the olive relish with several olives, capers, orange pepper, celery and a vinaigrette. A chopped vegetable salad to go with. Now I just have to prepare myself for lots of leftovers....I can deal. They get better as they sit.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    9 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          I forgot to mention the tomatoes are mini san marzanos out of Texas. Holy crap, if you can get them, do. They are delicious.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Well done! We make Muffaletta a couple of times a year. They're delicious. Yours look great!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Wow, Suz! That is so pretty you show blow it up and frame it. Awesome job :D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I especially like the looks of that chopped salad. Beaut'.