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What's for Dinner #304 -- The Celebration Edition! [through June 8, 2014]

I know that most people here are not in celebration mode, but for us, the party is non-stop for the next 10 days. Everything is graduation related, though very few of the actual celebrations are ones that we are giving personally. Oh, we're having a small BBQ on Sunday, but after that, there is a party on Monday, the actual graduation on Wednesday with a lunch after, another birthday/graduation party on Thursday, and a fancy dinner our son has requested that we give for a few of his best foodie friends. With all that, I was happy to take the easy route tonight and make old-school tacos, a dinner particularly requested by one of our favorite Egyptians who leaves tomorrow.

Any other celebrations out there? Maybe the season and the appearance of wonderful fresh foods is enough to celebrate! What's for dinner at your house?

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  1. Simple dinner tonight-grilled Italian sausages, red sauce from the freezer, garlic bread and salad. Not quite a summer meal but more a mom-worked-all-day-and-is-exhausted meal.

    Our farm share officially starts this week so that will determine this weekends meals. Celebrating our newest addition-I'm officially a great aunt. Again! Will be coming up with some good freezer meals for my niece.

    2 Replies
      1. re: foodieX2

        My coworker who bought the CSA last year signed up again - although I thought she was going to go with a half-share this year for just herself. Nope - she got the full share! So I might be involved in the CSA again. We'll see.

        And congrats on your niece's baby!

      2. Rustic garlic chicken, roasted Parmesan asparagus, and mashed potatoes.

        I'd been feeling like my new stove was hotter than the old one, but tonight confirmed it. I've NEVER had chicken come look like this in three minutes. Obviously, I covered it with sauce, but it was quite lovely. The breast pictured was terribly dry, though, so there's definitely going to be a learning curve. (I'm normally a thigh gal, but the thighs on this bird were TINY. I don't know why I was worried about photogenics, since I just sauced it anyway. Oh well.)

         
        2 Replies
          1. Tonight's freezer dive has resulted in a package of mushroom ravioli being pulled. Ravioli will be tossed with more mushrooms, zucchini, garlic and tarragon sauteed in the good olive oil. Topped with a cheap-but-tasty Lithuanian knockoff of parm reg. Steamed asparagus with butter and balsamic on the side.

            1 Reply
            1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

              Reviewing the freezer contents tells me I'd best stop stocking up on pork t'loin at Costco and start cooking it. So it began tonight with a lovely moo gratiem from Wandee Young's old cookbook. Paired that with a quick pickled cucumber salad (p. 23) and threw a whack of fresh spinach in at the last minute to wilt on top. Served over some Basmati, it was darn tasty and ready in time to send the SO off to hockey with an hour before he has to play.

            2. I thought I could use the peach ginger jam I made to cook chicken but I guess I've lost my taste for anything with that much sugar in it, not that I've ever had a sweet tooth but I just can't do it- even in small amounts. They'll make great gifts, though! I'll have to pick up some no/ low sugar pectin and make another batch to keep- lord knows I have enough peaches!

              I did, however, make a very concentrated syrup from the peels and some jalapenos and fresno chilis that I hardly added any sugar to. I tried it today and it's freaking delicious! I'm going to bake 6 bone in skin on chicken thighs and glaze them after a pass through the broiler when the skin is super crispy. Sauteed zucchini noodles with lots of garlic are becoming a staple around here and I'm not feeling eggplant so I think I'll just slice some cocktail cucumbers in half lengthwise and grind some pink salt on them for the other side. Their crispness is addictive!

              And speaking of addictive, I picked a big handful of Padron peppers last night and will fry those up as a starter.

              4 Replies
              1. re: weezieduzzit

                I bet that jam would be awesome mixed with Sriracha for a meat glaze. And over cream cheese with something spicy for spreading on celery, cucumber slices, or crackers...

                1. re: ChristinaMason

                  I was thinking the same thing re: the hot sauce and a cheese dip.

                  Also might be good mixed into salad dressings, marinades, etc. as a substitute for sweet ingredients like honey or brown sugar.

                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                    The almost unsweetened peach jalapeno glaze hit the right balance for me and would be what I would use for any of the suggestions. Since I rarely have anything with any kind of sugar in it any more (and it's been that way for so long now,) I don't think I could add enough Sriracha to balance the full sugar jam without really screwing it up. That *had been* the original plan but it just won't work (for me. I'm sure it'll work fine for the people I give it to.)

                    Since I can get no/ low sugar pectin there isn't really any point in trying to doctor anything anyhow, I'll just make something that works better for me. It's not like the first batch will go to waste, people are usually more than willing to accept a jar of fresh jam. :)

                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                      if you;re going to mix for heat, why not use the pepper jam (jelly?) that ypu've already made?

                  2. Another simple dinner... I marinated some chicken in pineapple juice, ketchup, soy sauce, ginger, and garlic, it's a Cooking Light recipe. I grilled that, and made some pineapple and red pepper fried rice with leftover rice from last night. SO enjoyed it, and it was pretty easy. I'm not a pineapple fan but the chicken was very good and not pineappley at all. I left the pineapple out of my rice.