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What's for dinner #315 - Summertime... and the living is easy. [through July 31, 2014]

Are fish jumping? Is the cotton high? Do you have a rich daddy and a good-looking momma?

Even if none of these apply to you, you're still cookin' something, right? Share your summer bounty with the rest of us cats!

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  1. As for myself - my band's playing a 50th birfday party tonight, and despite the hostess' generous offer to have tamales and 'other things' before the show, I may just have some tomato salad w/red onions & feta at home beforehand with a lovely mix of heirloom tomatoes I got at the farmers market yesterday. We also still have a bit of the smoked pork shoulder leftover. I'm just not much of a tamales fan.

    It's a relatively early gig, so we may grab a nightcap / late night snack at our local cocktail purveyor - after all, it's been at least 12 hours since we were last there :-)

    13 Replies
    1. re: linguafood

      I know it is off topic but how is the dude doing? I have been worried about him.

      1. re: suzigirl

        Thank you for asking, suzi! I've not wanted to hijack the WFD thread, plus it's difficult to really say at the moment. He has good days and bad - today he ate more than in the last few days, and yesterday he got up on the couch to lie on his favorite blanket (after days spent pretty much in the same spot under our coffee table, barely sniffing at food).... so that's an improvement. I really hope we get him well again. We're now down to FF appetizers and.... baby food (grain-free meat).

        1. re: linguafood

          At least he is eating a little something. I hope he keeps improving. Poor little baby.

          1. re: linguafood

            Fingers crossed for little kitty :) *hugs* to kitty's mama

            1. re: linguafood

              Glad he's eating a bit more today. Enjoy the nightcap tonight.

              1. re: linguafood

                I'd been wondering too. Hope he keeps improving.

                1. re: linguafood

                  :-( I hope things keep improving. I have one I'm worried about, too.

                  For appetite, two things have been very helpful with two of my cats when very ill: Wellness Healthy Indulgence pouches and a sprinkling of feline Forti Flora probiotic. Forti Flora must have some incredible flavor or aroma enhancement, it was the only sure way to get my late cat to eat at the end last year. The pouches helped with a lot of other sick cats with no appetites according to reports from others online, too.

                  Fingers crossed things keep going the right way.

                  1. re: mcf

                    I will try to find those at the local pet store. Are they a common item, or do they need to be ordered online? A day could make a difference, unfortunately.

                    1. re: linguafood

                      I have seen them at my local holistic pet store where I get the "kids" their pet food. I am pulling for your little man.

                      1. re: linguafood

                        The vet carries Forti Flora but it's less than half the price from amazon.com.

                        Petco carries the pouches, but much cheaper ordered with auto ship at chewy.com.

                        1. re: mcf

                          I can't wait for any shipping at this point, but thank you. I will look at Petco and Wiscoy and hope to find it.

                          1. re: linguafood

                            I hope it works as well for you, fingers, toes and eyes crossed.

                            1. re: linguafood

                              Some health food stores carry it too.

                2. We have bounty from the Farmers Market to grill. Getting out the gas version for the first time this summer. It's been a chilly rainy July. Thinking jerk veggies and barbeque chicken. There is olive bread too, and wine.

                  3 Replies
                  1. re: Berheenia

                    A good day for grilling, Berheenia. Enjoy it all.

                    1. re: Berheenia

                      what are jerk veggies?
                      just veggies in jerk seasoning (i guess that's obvious answer but wanted to check).

                      1. re: pie22

                        http://www.foodandwine.com/recipes/sp...

                        is my goto recipe for the spices although I usually hold back on the hot pepper

                    2. I'm not sure. My husband said yesterday he was in the mood for Mexican but I had a friend over so our dinner wound up being mango margaritas. That counts as Mexican, right?

                      I have ground beef in the fridge so I can make burritos if he still wants Mexican. If not, then I may just do burgers in the cast iron skillet and grab a bag of onion rings from the freezer. Oh and there will be some form of zucchini. . . again.

                      1. Porterhouse steaks, spinach and buttered new potatoes. The classic steak dinner. James insists.

                        5 Replies
                            1. re: suzigirl

                              I'm pretty sure I wouldn't argue with James' insistence.

                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                When he's right, he's right. No argument from me. Just a fork and a knife.

                            2. I didn't have much on the grocery list this week so that means I browse, lose all self control and just grab random items I don't need. I will accept this as a blessing since I'm really in a cooking and appetite rut that needs to end. In this week's random grab bag is speck so it will be the inspiration for dinner. The collard green overload continues so braised collards with speck and ground veal finished with Trader Joe's garlic mustard aioli.

                              3 Replies
                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                Check out the beef Bolognese ravioli at TJ's. They're amazing with a simple tomato sauce and a sprinkle of parmesan.

                                1. re: Berheenia

                                  Great, more random grabs :) Good thing I don't eat pasta or else they'd hop right into the cart. I imagine they will and I'll save them for a pasta-lover who happens to walk into my door.

                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                    Oooh, good to know. I was picturing mystery meat filling for some reason. If you like them, I'll give 'em a go.

                                2. No jumping fish or high cotton, and I wouldn't say either of my parents are rich, but I'll give them both a thumbs-up on good-looking.

                                  We had our second batch of green chiles fresh off the plants last night, so I made another green chile sauce, and also whipped up a red one with some of the ground hot NM chile I have in the cupboard. They were both used to make Christmas smothered breakfast burritos for dinner. Fried up some bacon, then cooked diced purple potatoes and onions in the remaining grease, then mixed the bacon back in. This, along with scrambled eggs and a bit of farmer's cheese were wrapped in tortillas and smothered with red and green. It was delicious, but would have been even better with a scoop of beans in each burrito.

                                  The last of the chocolate and strawberry ice cream with fresh strawberries and raspberries for dessert.

                                   
                                  2 Replies
                                    1. Your intro made me think of gorgeous music from Porgy and Bess then sent me right to YouTube to listen to one of my favorite country bands... Alabama. We saw them when they came to MA during their last tour before the big breakup. (Walkin' In High Country)

                                      WFD: Oven-Fried Chicken Katsu, Napa cabbage with tomato/onion/cucumber pickle, COTC.

                                      The katsu is a Japanese deep fried seasoned chicken cutlet, but Andrea Nguyen bakes it in the oven after doing the three-dish-dredge. I was going to use Napa wraps for this but DH brought home a freshly baked baguette so there goes that calorie saving plan. Instead we'll make a tossed salad with the Napa and last night's tomato salad is now a pickle, LOL, so that will go into the sandwich. There are two more ears of FM corn; it's been quite delicious with that fresh corn flavor we all love.

                                      1. Summertime... in my head i keep going back and forth between the Submlime version (highly adapted, of course) and the lovely Sam Cooke version - so love that man's voice.

                                        Summertime, and i gots me a cold. not terrible, but i think i'll stay in bed most of the day. except for a short neighborhood jaunt to pick up some groceries. it's a gorgeous day out, from what i can see out the window. i think a simple roast chicken for tonight, as it's easy. have corn on the cob too.

                                        marinating now for tomorrow's dinner is pernil - it's been ages since i made one. and i'm looking forward to making cubano sandwiches (i think suzie-inspired?) with the - ahem - "leftover" pork.... if there is such a thing here....

                                        this morning's brunch consisted of a friend's visiting mother's Pav Bhaji - a typical street food dish of Mumbai - a vegetable dish eaten with liberally buttered toasted buns. the butter contrasts SO nicely with all the spices.

                                         
                                        6 Replies
                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                          Sam Cooke will forever remind my of my husbands and mines courtship. "You Send Me" is the song we danced to at our wedding.

                                          And can I say a hell yeah to the idea of good cubano!

                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                            Guilty as charged on the cubano. Hope yours is delicious.

                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                              Janis Joplin gets my nod for Summertime. Her rendition was both crude and raw. It stripped out all niceties. Haunting.

                                              Good looking meal.

                                              1. re: steve h.

                                                Agreed. It's one of those tunes that are (sadly) overdone and overplayed, but Janis's version has a special place in my heart.

                                                1. re: steve h.

                                                  yep. that's a good one, fo sho.

                                                  (dammit, that was supposed to be "Sublime", not Submlime.")

                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                    It's a lime!! ...apologies to Penn and Teller.

                                              2. We've got all kinds of random leftovers in the fridge..bbq pulled pork, cole slaw, some shepherds pie, last nights yellow wax and green beans with smoked turkey from what i see just opening the door and who knows what else once I start moving things. I'll be having some of these and the DF requested an Italian sub. I stopped by the store to pick up turkey, ham, Genoa salami and sub rolls to make it out of. We have a watermelon and honeydew that needs cutting for dessert. This week upcoming, I have a group of 25 to cook lunch & dinner daily for starting Monday; I have shopping to do tomorrow and some food prep and I have to find fridge space somewhere...

                                                2 Replies
                                                1. re: Cherylptw

                                                  You are a saint on this board. i wish I still had groups to cook for- jealous- it's fun. :)

                                                  1. re: Berheenia

                                                    I love it because it gives me the opportunity to showcase my food.

                                                2. It's getting towards the end of summer for us... veggie season is almost done. (Of course, we still have several months of HOT to come.)

                                                  I just put a bushel of butter beans in the freezer (thanks to DH who stood in line to get them for me yesterday). Dinner tonight will be a gorgeous piece of scamp (using Marcella's fish and potatoes recipe) and a new recipe for me to try: Tomato and Squash Crumble (I've done a similar one with just tomatoes, but the mix of tomatoes with summer squash and onion sounds too good to pass up). I have 5 or 6 peaches from last weekend's trip up into mid-GA. Need to figure out what to do with those. Last weekend's try of a Pioneer Woman recipe was a bust... WAY too sweet and gloopy.

                                                  Tomorrow, we're off for a morning at the beach, to be followed by a "linner" somewhere that will definitely include oysters!

                                                  2 Replies
                                                  1. re: onrushpam

                                                    Sounds great, welcome to WFD! I would love to hear how the crumble turned out.

                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                      Oh, I play in WFD every now and then... just not regularly. The crumble was great. I used about half a box of the small heirloom tomatoes from TJs and two yellow squash. I used Parm for the cheese. Here's the link to the recipe:
                                                      http://www.vegetariantimes.com/recipe...

                                                  2. I'm going to do Moo Shu take-away tonite to get a second gauge on my ultimate goal of moo shu quesadillas. Last moo shu restaurant pancakes were the correct type so I may do rice flour and lard tortillas and break out the tortilla press. Oh the fun.

                                                    Big batch of basil pesto made this afternoon, and I;m basil'd out.
                                                    Meanwhile---the basil keeps growing. Whatsupwiththat???? LOL.

                                                    Did a small batch of red sauce with bssil, meatballs and hot sausage over penne on Saturday.

                                                    Steak on the grill and pesto in some way as a side likely tomorrow. With tomatoes. Lord what to do with the tomatoes.

                                                    CH website changes have me lost.
                                                    So Done-zo.
                                                    TTFN.

                                                    12 Replies
                                                    1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                      Dinners sound fab. Basil = the plant that keeps on giving... in the right environment. Too bad you decided to leave but I really do sympathize, and wish you wouldn't.

                                                      1. re: Gio

                                                        My basil has yellowed and looks so sad. They're going to power-wash my row of townhouses and we have to remove furniture and plants before they do it. I think I'll just pull the basil out of the pot and toss it out. My carrots look great on top (lots of greens) but I pulled a few and they're teeny-tiny as well. Oh well.

                                                        1. re: LindaWhit

                                                          Hang in and hold onto that summer place!

                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                            If I'm not mistaken you have a container garden on your deck. Root vegetables, generally speaking, need plenty of room to expand underground. I'd guess you're buying potting soil too rather than using compost you've made. That's fine but, the carrots do need a robust growing medium. Not to sound patronizing, Miracle-Gro produces a bagged organic potting soil that's pretty good for container plants. It's called Miracle-Gro® Organic Choice® Potting Mix.

                                                            I suppose this will be seen as OT but as a gardener I just had to add my $0.02.

                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                              Yeah, I definitely overseeded, lingua. And I definitely didn't use compost. Will try and remember the Miracle-Gro for next year, as I've got plenty of seeds for next year.

                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                Now waaaiiiiiiit just a minute here. Ms. Lingua ain't got nothing to do with your basil problems. No sirree.

                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                  Oops! I kept trying to figure out what the hell you were talking about, and then finally realized I responded to Gio as if I had responded to you. LOL

                                                                  And no - I'm completely at fault for my basil failings, lingua!

                                                          2. re: Gio

                                                            LOL.

                                                            I'm not leaving.
                                                            CBS-Int is just LOLzarious and the I.T./Engineers. Sooo sticking around <popcorn>

                                                            If the site gets back to browser friendly, you get moar dinner pics.

                                                            I also am trading some basil for some mint tomorrow morning so I'm going to do a bunch of mint simple syrup for cocktails and lemonade and go from there.

                                                            Have a friend who wants to have old skool chicken and dumpings she misses from her childhood (Amish stlyle with the flat noodles, not drop dumplings) so that's on this weeks list. Google-Fu in full effect. LOL.

                                                              1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                The flat dumplings are Amish-style? Interesting. I've never seen them anywhere except at my family events and Cracker Barrel and we're Southern as it gets, no trace of Amish. Yet usually when I go to Southern food establishments I'm disappointed with the drop style.

                                                                1. re: speakhandsforme

                                                                  Sorry speakhands, but "Amish style " is just a colloquialism I tend to use for the local version of chicken and dumplings. I;m midwest based now with pretty good sized Amish communitities in all directions and most restaurants serve the flat noodles vs. the drop style dumplings.

                                                                  Seems, using Google endlessly last nite,the flat noodle version has Southern roots as well.

                                                                  Having lived on the east coast, I just remember c&d using the golf ball drop dumpling all the times I had it living there.

                                                                  THEN...you have chicken and dumpling made with standard biscuits and baked a'la a cassarole.

                                                                  It's all very confusing and regional it seems.
                                                                  I;m going to do a riff on the ATK recipe for the sauce and fuss around with baking powder amount in the dumplings by doign two trial batches of them alone. Hey, flour is cheap. Hahahaha.

                                                                  Forward into teh fog for me on this one. :-)

                                                                  But- I ain't skeered. It's just food.

                                                                2. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                  I have an amish cookbook with LOTS of renditions of that dish, if you need a recipe(s)?

                                                            1. WFD is the first steak I've ever cooked, with portabella mushrooms, red onion, some sauteed spinach, and fresh corn on the cob. I read that the pan needed to be quite hot, but it was too hot and got some burned bits. Still it was a respectable mid-rare, and flavorful from the lime, chipolte, garlic, and red pepper I marinated it in. The mushrooms were an impulse buy at costco, but were great cooked in the pan after the steak with leftover marinade, with the onions.

                                                              Dessert is Orange Almond cupcakes, a Claudia Rodin recipe adapted to cupcakes!

                                                               
                                                              13 Replies
                                                              1. re: SarahCW

                                                                Nicely done, Sarah! Mushrooms and steak pair so well together.

                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                  Thanks! I'm nervous about cooking beef that isn't in a stew or ground. I also bought a flank steak for tomorrow, which I'm not sure how I'll cook. Most recipes seem to require a grill, which I do not have. I'm thinking marinate and broil? Then slice thin and use in a salad with roasted veg. I have no recipe, so it is a bit of this and that!

                                                                  1. re: SarahCW

                                                                    Flank steak is a bit more chewy. I'd recommend marinating for several hours with some acidic ingredient to help tenderize, and doing a quick broil OR grill, let it rest, and then thin slice for serving.

                                                                    1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                      A local restaurant bases its marinade on soy sauce. Works well.

                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                        Alton Brown's marinade recipe for skirt should also be good for flank. I don't blend, just mince the garlic and chop the scallions: http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/al...

                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                          I like the soy sauce idea Harters mentioned, and this marinade with soy, lime, cumin, garlic, red pepper flakes and brown sugar would be perfect for flank.

                                                                          1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                            I'll have to try the soy next time, I did balsamic garlic and oil with some parsley and basil, with a little red pepper. It is marinating now to cook off for lunch/dinner today! I'll report later...

                                                                            1. re: SarahCW

                                                                              A nice blend, Sarah. Like the herbs addition. Should be very good!

                                                                              1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                The steak was ok, definitely less successful than the first one. I think it was that the steak was so thin on one end and thick on the other. It did have a nice mid-rare on the thick side, but was over done on the other. I cooked it under the broiler on a preheated broiler pan, so it actually got some nice char on the outside. But the steak was for a roasted veggie pesto quinoa salad so the overdone end was not bad at all. The salad was delicious, but not the best looking thing. I roasted zucchini, eggplant, onions, peppers, corn, tomatoes, and beet. The beet made everything pink, so it all looks like beet. I served it with some steamed spinach, because I never can have enough veggies!

                                                                                1. re: SarahCW

                                                                                  Yeah, the thin end issue is always a problem. I *sometimes* cut it off when it's reached the right temp so it doesn't overcook. But glad it all tasted good!

                                                                  2. re: SarahCW

                                                                    Respectable mid-rare on your first attempt is Success! Great meal you've got there; you can never go wrong with more mushrooms next to a steak.

                                                                    1. No mojo tonight, no urge to cook at all.
                                                                      Thankfully, I had some natural casing franks on hand. A couple of those in top-sliced buns with India Relish and mustard quieted the "feed-me" voice.

                                                                      1. I finally made the summer squash gratin and I have to say it was damn good! Even my squash hating son tried it. No he didn't eat anymore but trying a big bite is progress, lol. Along side we had grilled burgers and some quick pickles I made earlier. All in all a good dinner.

                                                                        Now Sam Cooke is on the stereo, some rose has been poured and I am sitting on the porch getting ready to read Delicious. I loved Garlic and Saphires, hoping this novel is as enjoyable,

                                                                         
                                                                         
                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: foodieX2

                                                                            Thumbs up on the TRYING, foodie. A step forward. (Ignore those couple of steps back that happen on occasion.)

                                                                            1. re: foodieX2

                                                                              Read Delicious recently. Very enjoyable, though I'd still give a slight edge to Reichl's non fiction.

                                                                              Haven't been cooking at home recently -- enjoyable dinners out included Shanghainese last night (superior yellow fish with seaweed) and very decent pizza at a new place tonight very early to beat the fireworks crowd who inundate our neighbourhood.

                                                                            2. Burgers tonight, cheeseburgers to be precise. The meat is a house-ground mix of chuck and short rib at a 1:1 ratio. The cheese will be white American from Land o' Lakes and the roll will be a lightly toasted Marty's Roll. Caramelized onions will be available, chips too. Beer and wine will be on the counter.

                                                                              This summer is blasting by too fast.

                                                                              4 Replies
                                                                              1. re: steve h.

                                                                                NOM!!!!!

                                                                                And we shall NOT discuss the issue of summer zoom-zoom-zooming by too quickly, ya hear?

                                                                                  1. re: steve h.

                                                                                    It was a tasty burger.

                                                                                    Edited to add: Fritz Lang's Metropolis is on the plasma.

                                                                                     
                                                                                    1. re: steve h.

                                                                                      yummers.
                                                                                      good choice on the plasma, too.

                                                                              2. Wanted fish for dinner tonight. Went back down to my old stomping grounds earlier today for a haircut; stopped at the new Whole Foods in the next town over and got some wild-caught cod.

                                                                                It was lightly oiled and seasoned with salt and pepper and baked in the convection oven at 350° for 20 minutes. Topped with a pistachio - lemon gremolata.

                                                                                Sides were leftover rice pilaf and sautéed corn and red bell pepper with fresh thyme.

                                                                                Wine. And sliced mango and peaches for dessert. And something on the tube.

                                                                                 
                                                                                3 Replies
                                                                                1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                  Wow, Linda, the fish looks so good! Can you give more details on the gremolata? Added before or after cooking?

                                                                                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                    After, Christina. Since the cod was simply baked with oil, salt and pepper, the gremolata brightened up the flavor. (The picture doesn't really do the fish justice - the gremolata looks like a burnt topping, I know - but it wasn't! Just a bad angle on the flash on my phone. LOL)

                                                                                    About 1/4 cup of chopped pistachios (although for a single portion, this could be cut WAY back). I "sifted" through the chopped pistachios to find smaller bits. (I ate the larger pieces. LOL) About 1/2 Tbsp. or so of chopped fresh parsley, 1/2 tsp. of minced garlic (didn't want it too heavily garlicky), and the zest from a whole lemon. Mix it all in a small bowl and sprinkle over top of the fish.

                                                                                    It would be good on baby lamb chops as well. I also like this idea of Cauliflower Steaks with Pistachio Gremolata, although her proportions of parsley-to-pistachios seem WAY off to me.

                                                                                    http://acozykitchen.com/cauliflower-s...

                                                                                2. It was actually pleasant outside today with less humidity than usual so I attempted to tidy the deck and finish transplanting a few things. I became WFD for the mosquitoes within moments. Actually I think they might be an evil fairy version of vampires...so dinner tonight will have garlic. Lots and lots of garlic.

                                                                                  Which takes care of my decision for the side - yucca with onion and garlic sauteed in olive oil. The last steak stuffed poblano, and salad. Cantaloupe for dessert.

                                                                                  I know most on this board love summer but between the heat, humidity and the flying teeth I just can not wait for autumn!

                                                                                  8 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: meatn3

                                                                                    Not I, Mn3. I wander through Summer just to get to Autumn, Winter, and early Spring. Garlic will repel vampires I'm told but Moss-kee-toes I'm not so sure.

                                                                                    1. re: Gio

                                                                                      I'll find out tomorrow!

                                                                                      My cat-boys have a lady friend who visits the deck in the wee hours. When she's not hissing and trying to attack them through the French doors she keeps busy knocking my stack of empty pots over.

                                                                                      Somehow the boys find this captivating and adorable.

                                                                                    2. re: meatn3

                                                                                      I'm sooo ready for fall! Dinner sounds delicious!

                                                                                      1. re: meatn3

                                                                                        i haven't had yucca like that in AGES! reminded me i must make some. do you buy it fresh or frozen? i think they have both at my local meximart...

                                                                                        and i do love summer, especially here in San Francisco where our record-breaking temp yesterday in the City was 75. cool breezes today.

                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                          Yucca cooked like this is one of my comfort foods.

                                                                                          Actually a Hispanic market near me has canned. The texture of fresh or frozen is better but the canned is actually pretty decent. My freezer space is limited and my yucca eating infrequent so the canned works for me. Even the smallest fresh piece is too much for me since I cook for one.

                                                                                          The can had a recipe for the sauce which I worked from. They suggested white wine vinegar (I'm out of) so I subbed sherry vinegar. The wwv would have been better since it is a little sharper. Added lime juice too. The Cuban restaurants in the Tampa Bay area where I used to live add onions to the mix. I cooked them in olive oil on the lowest temperature possible. Turned out really good!

                                                                                          1. re: meatn3

                                                                                            thanks! i don't think i've seen it canned, but i may go take a look at the meximart nearest me and see if i find it. you're right - the frozen would be too much in my freezer too. we wouldn't eat it often enough. but i do miss it every now and then. i think it would go well with my pernil, which is now garlicking up the whole place....

                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                              i think it would go well with my pernil, which is now garlicking up the whole place....
                                                                                              ~~~~~~~~~
                                                                                              Which, of course, is NOT a bad thing. :-)

                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                Yuca would be perfect with pernil!

                                                                                                I fished the can from recycling - it is by Goya so shouldn't be terribly hard to find. One can makes two generous servings.

                                                                                        2. A post earlier today inspired WFD tonight. Someone asked about tomato aspic and down the rabbit hole I went. So, I made the aspic. So worth it! Bought a beautiful sirloin from our favorite butcher and some local sweet corn. I wish I had taken a picture of the plates! Rare sliced steak with a garlic rosemary compound butter, corn with great grill marks and a spoonful of aspic with a sprinkle of lemon salt. A glass of "the other red." All eaten by candlelight at the table that belonged to DH's great grandmother in our new 106 year old home.

                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                              1. re: Jonishkc

                                                                                                That all sounds wonderful. So can you share your tips for a great tomato aspic?

                                                                                                1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                  I'm curious too. My mum's been making aspic for decades and it's pretty straightforward via that recipe, just tomato juice, gelatin, grated onion and seasoning.

                                                                                              2. I just wanted to give all of you a big thank you. I think the WFD threads, the friendly support and descriptions of your meals really helped me start getting my kitchen mojo back!

                                                                                                I made a different meal each night this past week excepting the power outage evening. I had fun getting creative with my leftovers. And I took pleasure in eating the meals.

                                                                                                I'm still not getting hungry but with a list of simple dishes it is easier to just make a meal. Once I begin eating I'm enjoying the flavors and cleaning my plate.

                                                                                                So I'm getting there thanks in a large part to all of the WFD folks!

                                                                                                xxoo!

                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                  1. Visiting the BFF in Baton Rouge, so WFD is my leftover muffaletta half from Central Grocery :)

                                                                                                    Skipped Cafe du Monde due to the ridiculous line, July heat and post-rainshower humidity, but headed to a local BR cafe for beignets that were just as good. Tomorrow will likely be BR sightseeing and some shrimp gumbo. Or crawfish if I can find them in a form where I don't have to shell them myself. Seems I only ever find them peel and eat (too much work) or in dishes where they're treated with too much complexity so you can't really taste their freshness. I'm picky when it comes to fresh seafood - the simpler the better, usually, for me.

                                                                                                    Hope y'all are having a great weekend!

                                                                                                    2 Replies
                                                                                                    1. re: speakhandsforme

                                                                                                      I am so jealous. That muffaletta was my first experience with the dish (too good to label a simple sandwich). It remains the best rendition I've ever had.

                                                                                                      Have a great time! NO is such a wonderful city for food and so much more.

                                                                                                      If we weren't in the heat of summer I'd be even more jealous!

                                                                                                      1. re: speakhandsforme

                                                                                                        I am going to hide this post from husband. He is itching to get back to NO and dreams of muffalettas. I make a good one but its just not the same

                                                                                                      2. roast chicken with a mexican flair... let the bird sit in the fridge with kosher salt all over it for a few hours, then rubbed it with powdered cumin & oregano, cayenne, and fresh-cracked pepper. squirted fresh lemon juice all over and then stuck the lemon pieces in the cavity. it's been a long time since i've done anything other than the Keller method, and this was really tasty. as far as the fear of "steaming" the chicken by using lemon - nope. used the same high heat i do for the Keller bird and the skin crisped up fabulously.

                                                                                                        on the side i slathered corn on the cob with a concoction of mayo, minced cilantro, lime juice, cayenne, and a little butter. but first i micro'd the corn in their husks (using that trick that's been going around the webz re cutting the fat end and nuking a cob, then sliding out the corn with no husk nor silk sticking to it - it works!), then after slathering, liberally grated cotija cheese over the cobs, then stuck them under the broiler, turning every few mins. Came out wonderful! even better than the stuff i can get on the street in my neighborhood.

                                                                                                        also, a watermelon salad with fresh mint, basil, a little arugula on the side, greek feta, and a light dressing of pomegranate syrup and lime juice with a little olive oil, salt and pepper.

                                                                                                        quite a nice summery meal.

                                                                                                        i also blended up some watermelon chunks to make myself a cocktail later tonight. summer cold be damned, i'm having a cocktail.

                                                                                                         
                                                                                                         
                                                                                                         
                                                                                                         
                                                                                                        11 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                          Your meals always look wonderful.

                                                                                                          I hope you will find occasional kitchen access on your upcoming adventure. Otherwise the markets filled with lovely items beckoning you will drive you crazy!

                                                                                                          1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                            aw, thanks meatn3!

                                                                                                            and it's so true - so we are making sure all our apts. have kitchens that are well equipped, and at least in barcelona, we are staying in front of one of the best markets there! we have 9 days there so i'm sure there'll be some cooking. my sister loves to cook as much as i do, and she's better at it.

                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                Urrmurrgurrrrrd! Lookit that chicken. Makes me wanna jump right through that screen/porthole and come out in Kallifornia '-)

                                                                                                                  1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                    thanks all!

                                                                                                                    lingua, you need to do that anyway, and come visit the ocean.... and me of course! (although our ocean would be too cold for you, and it's hardly ever hot enough to lay out, so maybe you just come visit me and we party and eat good.)

                                                                                                                    1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                      It all sounds great. I'll buy a piggy bank today '-)

                                                                                                                  2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                    Wow. Just look at that sweet birdy. I want a piece.

                                                                                                                      1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                        You're building up your immunity for the big trip!

                                                                                                                      2. Tortilla. Salad. Crusty bread.

                                                                                                                        Exactly the same meal as last time I mentioned we were having this. And the time before. And any other mention over the last 30+ years since the now brother-in-law first made it for us in his parents' then home in Mallorca.

                                                                                                                        Just onion, potato & eggs for the tortilla. Salad - lettuce, roughly chopped tomato & onion. Dressing - oil (and I have a bottle of "Fet a Soller" olive oil from his home town), lemon juice, Tabasco.

                                                                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                                                                        1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                          One of these days, Ima hafta make a tortilla. I love that dish so much, yet never have made it myself. TF?!

                                                                                                                          1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                            mmm... tortilla... been a little while...

                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                              I love making tortilla and taking the leftovers cold on the plane to SF -- it's my go-to for avoiding airport food on short hops. Perfect at room temp!

                                                                                                                          2. The latter half of this summer, I am committed to becoming less of a freezer hoarder...things go in, but they rarely come out. To kick off the "use what you have" bonanza will be duck breast seared and served over bacon and blue cheese mashed cauliflower. It's my usual Sunday lifting rest "fun"day so dessert will be another round of a cheese, olive, and salami platter alongside pork rinds and TJs jalapeno pub cheese (don't judge :)

                                                                                                                            5 Replies
                                                                                                                            1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                              One of my favorite things about WFD is that so many of the clean out the freezer/pantry meals are as good if not better than ones that are planned! Nice meal Fld!

                                                                                                                              1. re: foodieX2

                                                                                                                                Thanks! Yea, the clean outs force creativity. Hopefully this will help me get my cooking groove back.

                                                                                                                              2. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                TJ's pub cheese, mmmm, was one of the major factors for my need to lose weight. I slathered it on a TJ's whole wheat british muffin for breakfast long after the gym next door to the office closed.

                                                                                                                                1. Dinner to use up produce turned into an impromptu dinner party. We had TJ's chicken-cilantro wontons and edamamae nuggets with homemade dipping sauce to start, then mapo tofu, smacked cucumber, oyster mushrooms, asparagus, and bok choy in ginger-garlic sauce, and a sweet-sour carrot-cabbage sesame slaw (idea borrowed from a Korean-Uighur restaurant we recently visited in NYC). Steamed rice, natch. ETA: We also made, and completely forgot, butternut squash in spicy black bean sauce. It was warming in the oven and someone who had a few glasses of wine <whistles innocently> forgot to put it out.

                                                                                                                                  It was a lot of fun. Forgot to plan dessert (there was time poolside to be had yesterday), so I just put out a plate of candied ginger, dark chocolate pieces, and almond butter thin cookies. There was coffee liqueur and cream for those who still had room.

                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                  18 Replies
                                                                                                                                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                    Everything sounds wonderful but that dessert is my kind of one! Nice save

                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                      All of that sounds SO good, Christina! And personally, I like the uber-simple idea of ginger, chocolate and crispy cookies for dessert.

                                                                                                                                      1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                        Thanks!

                                                                                                                                        I try to keep a box of cookies on hand for "emergencies" like this. Unfortunately the emergency more often is "I need something sweet!!!!!" after a plain ol' dinner for two. ;-)

                                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                          My mom and stepfather always had a package of Chips Ahoy available to have "just one cookie" after dinner. I didn't understand the ability to have just one cookie back then, but the older I get, I do understand just a taste of a sweet is sometimes enough after a savory dinner. Sometimes. ;-)

                                                                                                                                      2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                        That "whistles innocently" part is very funny and familiar around here. It sounds like a fun dinner party. I like the look of those chopsticks as well.

                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                            Thanks for the link, ChristinaMason! I am going to send a set of those to my little Nephew who wants to start using chopsticks.

                                                                                                                                        1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                          Aren't those wontons freaking delish, CM?

                                                                                                                                          That whole dinner sounds delovely!

                                                                                                                                          1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                            it all sounds great. any deets on the butternut squash in spicy black bean sauce? is it sauteed? i just bought a small one yesterday for later this week...

                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                              If it's a recipe from Every Grain of Rice the squash is steamed. Recipe title: "Rustic steamed squash with spicy black bean sauce (Xiang cun nan gua)". The ingredients are: chilli bean paste; ginger; fermented black beans; caster sugar; butternut squash; spring onions.

                                                                                                                                              Here's my report:
                                                                                                                                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/8922...

                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                Yep, that's the one. We use the easy way out and get the pre-peeled, pre-sliced buttnernut squash chunks from TJ's or our local grocery. You have to increase the steaming time, but that's about it.

                                                                                                                                                It is so. good. I had some today for breakfast heated up in a small skillet with a little rice and served with two eggs, over easy, drizzled with extra hot chili oil. I nearly cried.

                                                                                                                                              2. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                Here's Dunlop's recipe in my own words:

                                                                                                                                                3 Tbsp oil (DH reduced this slightly, as he felt it was too oily last time)
                                                                                                                                                2 Tbsp. Sichuan chili bean paste (AKA "hot bean paste" or "fermented bean paste")
                                                                                                                                                1 tsp. minced ginger (I would guess he may have increased the ginger and garlic a little)
                                                                                                                                                1 tsp. minced garlic
                                                                                                                                                1 tbsp. fermented black beans, rinsed, drained, and minced/mashed into a paste
                                                                                                                                                1/2 tsp. sugar
                                                                                                                                                1.25 lb. butternut squash or pumpkin
                                                                                                                                                2 spring onions, green parts only, finely sliced

                                                                                                                                                Heat the oil in a wok or small non-stick skillet on high and stir-fry the chili bean paste, garlic, and ginger until fragrant, then stir in the sugar. Set aside.

                                                                                                                                                Peel the squash, discarding pulp and seeds. Cut evenly into slices about 1/8 in. thick. Lay the slices neatly in a china or cook-safe bowl that will fit inside a large pot or steamer. Spoon the spicy sauce over the squash in the bowl and place in a large pot or steamer that has simmering water in the bottom. Cover and steam 15 min. or until the squash is tender (if you use thicker prepared squash chunks, increase time). Scatter with the spring onions and serve, tossing at the table to distribute the flavors.

                                                                                                                                                ETA: No microwave here, but I imagine it would work very well in this recipe.

                                                                                                                                              3. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                What a great dinner party!

                                                                                                                                                The slaw is intriguing - could you tell more?

                                                                                                                                                1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                  I'll have to ask DH when he returns home tonight. I'm pretty sure it was just shredded carrot, cabbage, and scallion(?) with white vinegar, sugar, salt, pepper, and Thai chili-garlic sauce. We scattered black sesame seeds over before serving. I'll check and let you know.

                                                                                                                                                2. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                  That's really tasty looking! I'm drooling over it a 7 in the am---yum :)

                                                                                                                                                3. It was soooo hot last night, and I had half a roast chicken, so we went with the current Vietnamese theme and did summer rolls. Shredded chicken, pickled carrot and daikon, lettuce and sweet basil. A quick dipping sauce made from peanut butter, lime, garlic, sambal, soy and sugar. Perfect for a hot summer night. (No pics, 'cause my summer rolls tend to not be as photogenic as they taste...)

                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                  1. Roasted apple-juice brined turkey breast, squash casserole, and probably macaroni and cheese. I was going to smoke the turkey breast but there's a chance of severe weather in the area today and tonight so I decided to just roast it in the oven instead.

                                                                                                                                                    It's not the most "summery" of meals but I'm making pans of squash casserole and macaroni and cheese for my sister and her husband. They have a 2 week old baby so I've been on food delivery duty. She actually gave me the turkey breast because she had no room in her freezer for it. I will be bringing her some of the turkey tomorrow too.

                                                                                                                                                    I'm also planning to do some kind of Greek-inspired orzo salad with feta cheese, oregano, and a lemon-vinaigrette. I don't have a recipe so it may be delicious or it might be a total fail.

                                                                                                                                                    3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                      I don't think you can mess that orzo salad up. It sounds really refreshing and summery.

                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                        Congrats on the new family member! The dishes are good choices - comforting, delicious and easy to reheat. They are lucky to have you near by.

                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Njchicaa

                                                                                                                                                          Nice of you to bring the fam food--I'm sure they'll appreciate!

                                                                                                                                                        2. After a successful cookout, mostly vegetables but chicken too, today the plan is to cook in so WFD is Amanda Hesser's Cottage pie. She calls it Shepherd's pie but I know the lamb versus beef thing gets the hounds started so I'm renaming it. I have some Whole Foods burger and new potatoes from the Farmers Market. Frozen peas are added to the mash and the meat gets some curry powder and the final dish gets put under the broiler. The weather is very unstable- it has poured earlier and looks ready for another round so I don't mind turning on the oven for a few minutes.

                                                                                                                                                          1. Hate the new format. Love what you all have been cooking. The plan for tonight is grilled steak and panzanella, but lots of t-storms around so we'll see....

                                                                                                                                                            1. What's happening?... I'm disoriented....

                                                                                                                                                              Oh yes, Vietnamese again. Shredded pork rind this time. Used butter lettuce (aka 'Kopfsalat' to me and Lingua. Achso, danke.) as wraps, with both Maggi and fish sauce dipping sauces -as well as both red and white wine. Hey, I like options. Leftovers will be enough for 2 new different meals.

                                                                                                                                                              New format is complicated, I think I need some time to find my way around in the coming days.

                                                                                                                                                              Hope everyone has had a nice weekend!

                                                                                                                                                              (My IKEA bench and tray in the garden :))

                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                              3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                1. re: BananaBirkLarsen

                                                                                                                                                                  Don't want to bore you to tears but there's more Vietnamese today, from leftovers. :)

                                                                                                                                                                  Thanks

                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Pata_Negra

                                                                                                                                                                    I wish someone would come over and bore *me* with it!

                                                                                                                                                              1. grilled flank steak fajitas with crumbled crumbled queso fresco, blistered green peppers and red onions,on thick-cut corn tortillas. The sauce served over the top was a chipolte cream.
                                                                                                                                                                I recently discovered La Tortilla Factory Hand Made Style Corn Tortillas. They are quite thick and, when heated right before eating on a comal, so delicious. They don't dry up, just blister nicely. Yummy! I recently bought a very heavy comal. I had one years ago but never used it, so I gave it away. Now, many years later, I changed my mind and wanted one again! I tend to do that: decide something is just taking up room, give it away, then years later, decide to buy it again!

                                                                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                  1. Reverting to more familiar flavors tonight, I'm planning a quick 'n dirty "lasagna" that is really frozen cheese ravioli layered with marinara and some chopped spinach I'll cook with some minced shallot and garlic and cream. I'll microplane some Parm. Regg. over top and bake until bubbly. On the side, a Romaine salad with LindaWhit's maple balsamic dressing. It's been a while since we've had it. I also thawed some spicy chicken Italian sausages, so we'll probably have a couple seared on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                    1. This morning we had leftover steak(I know, I know! Leftover what?????) made into steak and cheese omlettes, leftover buttered potatoes made into hash browns and broiled tomatoes with panko and parmesan crust. James had a bloody mary.

                                                                                                                                                                      Tonight we are having chili cheese dogs with Kayem hot dogs and chili I have been simmering all day. I am making a cheese sauce and garnishing them with scallions. Tater tots to go along side. So healthy. Lol

                                                                                                                                                                      2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                          James decided to grill the hot dogs and I dipped my tater tots in the cheese sauce. Man it was good.

                                                                                                                                                                        2. OK, I'm going in......it's PORK BELLY NIGHT! Picked up a package from Trader Joe's a few days ago. Tonight's the night.

                                                                                                                                                                          Scored the thick fat and seasoned with salt and lightly with pepper. Browned it on all sides in a skillet. And then I thought scoring the fat was NOT the right thing to do, as it kept sticking to the pan. We'll see. The glaze was painted all over the pork belly and then it went under the broiler in the convection oven until it was just as crispy as I want.

                                                                                                                                                                          The glaze was a combination of 1/2 cup pomegranate juice, 1/2 Tbsp. of champagne vinegar, 1/2 Tbsp. soy sauce, 1 Tbsp. of lime juice, a Tbsp. or so of dark brown sugar, 2 tsp. of Double Happiness Ginger-Garlic, and a few drops of Sriracha that was reduced in a sauce pan.
                                                                                                                                                                          (I'm patterning the glaze after mariacarmen's glaze from here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/9672... - and thank you, mc, for answering my stupid questions on the other social media forum. LOL)

                                                                                                                                                                          Sides are the rest (finally!) of the rice pilaf, and a carrot-cabbage slaw. The dressing was patterned after this one on CHOW: http://www.chow.com/recipes/11060-car... I used 1/4 cup olive oil, 1 Tbsp. of minced parsley, 1 Tbsp. of champagne vinegar, 1 tsp. of extra-strength Dijon mustard, dried orange zest (no idea how much), and salt and pepper. Not bad, but definitely not a keeper.

                                                                                                                                                                          Pepperwood Grove chardonnay as the libation.

                                                                                                                                                                          No pictures this time. I'm not as impressed with my cooking as I was with mariacarmen's. She is the pork belly master, IMO. (Or is that mistress. LOL) It tastes great and is wonderful tender. Just not picture-worthy.

                                                                                                                                                                          There's ice cream to assuage my disappointment at my first pork belly go-round. Note: I *did* say "first". Meaning I'm going to try this again. LOL

                                                                                                                                                                          5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: LindaWhit

                                                                                                                                                                              so wait, were you disappointed in the look of it or the taste? it sounds like you liked it - "tastes great and is wonderful tender" - but it also sounds like you didn't love it. was it the glaze? i have to tell you, that glaze you riffed on was my least favorite glaze of all the glazes i've done since then. sorry about that!

                                                                                                                                                                              i do hope you like it better next time... maybe try something really assertive next time - like brown sugar and makers mark. mmmm.... brown sugar in a pan, add MM, heat until syrupy, glaze... i usually add a dried chili to it when it's still liquidy so it infuses with a little heat...

                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                +1 on Maker's Mark. It imparts a subtle vanilla flavor. It's also important to reserve a dram for the chef.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                  The look of it, maria, not the taste. I loved the tenderness of the slices I cut off. And the glaze was good - not humongously great, but it worked for me this first time since I knew the flavors and wouldn't be put off by them.

                                                                                                                                                                                  I like the idea of the brown sugar and maybe a rum instead of bourbon with the spice of a chili. Will definitely try that next time. This didn't have enough oomph from the Sriracha as I didn't put in enough.

                                                                                                                                                                                2. The weather cooperated: I had my grilled steak with garlic-parsley butter and panzanella (with fresh-picked thyme and marjoram instead of basil for reasons of personal preference) and holy cow was it good. My first but not my last panzanella -- at least until I do my jeans a big favor and cut back on the carbs. (Excuse crappy photo.)

                                                                                                                                                                                  ETA: the dog has requested that I serve on separate plates next time as the vinegar in the panzanella was not to his liking. (You should see the half-licked plate: very funny.)

                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                    Oh my, that panzanella looks incredible! Steak is not shabby, either. I'm copying this. What kind of bread do you prefer?

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                      I used a ficelle from Iggy's, a local bakery. A ficelle is like a very skinny baguette: high crust to crumb ratio. I sliced it on a diagonal, sliced each slice in half, sprayed it with oil, toasted it till crispy in the toaster oven, and rubbed each piece with a cut clove of raw garlic. Not, I think, an authentic panzanella move but the bread held up really well (kept its crunch even) even while it absorbed all the salad juices. Total yum.

                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                      yum! i've only made panzanella once, and it was for the BF as i was going out for dinner, and it turned our really good! must try this again.

                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                          I love panzanella - yours looks delicious! I usually use a good baguette or sourdough boule for the bread. Try artichoke hearts next time - they are SO good in it!

                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                            SUPERB looking plate, Gretchen! And LOL at the dog's request. ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                          2. Tonight I made chicken curry because I made coconut cake.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Half a can of coconut milk, tomatoes and peppers from the garden, leftover roast chicken, leftover spinach from this morning's omelet fixings,chopped broccoli, curry, ginger, etc.

                                                                                                                                                                                            The coconut cake has a cooked sugar syrup/meringue frosting. I'd never done that before, so the frosting has some sugar chunks in it from cooling the syrup too quickly. DH and I don't care. We get to try it in a little while (it's in the fridge cooling, because I like cold coconut cake).

                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: kitchengardengal

                                                                                                                                                                                                Now I know what I want to make next- chicken curry with cocoanut milk! mmmm

                                                                                                                                                                                              2. We did a HARD workout tonight and needed a few carbs for recovery, so I threw a hangar steak on the grill pan and made fried rice while it was cooking. Diced onion, red bell pepper, broccoli stems, TONS of garlic, a cayenne chile for spice and lots of scallions, all sauteed until brown. Scrambled a couple of eggs and added them and leftover brown rice, cooked until there were lots of crispy edges, then deglazed with soy sauce and accumulated juices from the steak. Finished with Sriracha and more scallions. SO GOOD.

                                                                                                                                                                                                1. What a great day! Met a fellow 'hound and did a good faith trade for a Griswold CI pan I had been searching for all over. Got to try a bacon glazed donut and have brunch at an old haunt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Came home to a bounty of tomatoes so another garden feast. I sautéed farm share onion and garlic in olive oil and butter. Added a ton of steamed and shredded collards and some red pepper flakes and freshly ground pepper. Turned off the heat and added sunglold tomatoes and lots of fresh basil. Served it all over angel hair with grated parm. Bonus there are leftovers for tomorrow's lunch!

                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                   
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. Zuni roast chicken with sauteed tomatoes, crusty parmesan-herb zucchini, oven roasted corn on the cob, and green salad, followed by baked peaches with biscoff-pecan topping and caramel praline crunch frozen yogurt.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    The zucchini wasn't as exciting as I hoped it would be, but otherwise a great meal. Chicken was excellent as always, good prep for the corn I'd never tried before.

                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Pernil success! in the past, i've used a recipe that called for a marinade of white vinegar, garlic, oregano and salt. the one i used this time - this one - http://www.elboricua.com/pernil.html - doesn't use the vinegar, and the flavor was so much better. i didn't have a big pork shoulder, with the fat cap and skin on, but i marinated it overnight in the mash (made with my mortar and pestle) of garlic, salt, and fresh oregano. i made slits all over and pushed the mash into the slits. the flavor was superb! i cooked it, covered in foil, for i think 3.5 hours, tops, at 275 degrees, and at that point a knife went thru it like it was butter. i pulled it out and stuck it under the broiler to get those crispy browned bits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      on the side i had a hankering for a "rice-a-roni" type dish, and i had the teeny Mexicana brand vermicelli. i made it with tomato/chicken bouillon cubes, sauteed diced onion and a crushed garlic clove. but i think i used too much noodles-to-rice, and it turned out a tad mushy. but still tasty.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      and then i couldn't find our tortillas, and i'd already sliced up red cabbage, cilantro, scallions, jalapenos, and crumbled cotija for tacos. so at first the meal felt incomplete, until the BF turned his eagle eyes to the fridge and found the tortillas! much better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                      not perfect, except for that pork. look at that pinky inside!

                                                                                                                                                                                                      (i set aside some before i reheated for our cubano sandwiches tomorrow.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                       
                                                                                                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. Dinner tonight was a big salad, lots of vegies and oil poached tuna. I had made the tuna when I had several pounds from unclaimed CSF shares. It was alright. I'd tweak it if I end up needing to deal with lots of tuna again. Otherwise it's not good enough to waste fresh tuna on.

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Last nights garlic fest seems to have worked - nothing has bit me today!

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                              interesting on the garlic, and hard to wrap my head around "several pounds [of] unclaimed CSF shares"....

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: GretchenS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                It's mind boggling. At the end of the season the husband half of a couple who missed their pick up more often than not inquired where their unclaimed shares were. He seemed to think they were in deep freeze awaiting him.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Once it was explained that seafood is quite perishable and the CSF does not have a storage cooler for long term use he just kind of said "oh".

                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. The birthday gig went over swell, save for the fact that I didn't really eat... the tamales were incredibly bland and there wasn't much else to eat, so I didn't have much of anything besides beer = the musician's dinner >cough, cough<

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Had a little bit of saba sashimi and a couple of nightcaps at our regular watering hole with a buddy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              Tonight we were invited to a dinner party at a friend's house, and the food was delicious, as usual: caponata & hummus for appetizers, homemade falafel with tahini dip and fattoush, lamb kefte with tzatziki, lentil salad and romaine leaves with shrimp, avocado & peaches.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              The dude had a little bit of roast beef (rare, courtesy of Wegmans) and his appetite stimulant pill. I'm supposed to join my man in Philly for a coupla days next week, but I'll have to see how things go and how the skinny boy is doing....I've been crowd-sourcing suggestions on Facebook for kitty-tempting foods, and there have been some good ideas. One day at a time :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                              1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Parmesan cheese - the green can kind. :)

                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. I have ground beef picadillo from last week that I froze. I'm going to mix it with a bit of leftover steamed rice and stuff into poblano peppers, cover in a homemade enchilada sauce, bake, and sprinkle with cotija. Done.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                Oh, OK, maybe a salad with some jicama and tomatoes on the side.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. Pub lunch today. New opening in our county, from a minichain of pubs owned by Michelin starred chef in next county. Disappointing food.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dinner - a brown gloop meal from the freezer. Chicken, chorizo & chickpea casserole. Carb - giant couscous.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. WFD is eating all of the perishables in the refrigerator because we are leaving tomorrow morning for a trip to my SO's home village in the Tuscany region of Italy for a family reunion. My SO's Grandparents are hosting the reunion at their gorgeous 300+ year-old home that is located on an olive tree orchard and grape vine vineyard estate.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have been to my SO's family reunions in Tuscany before and I always learn something new about cooking. My SO's nonna does not speak English and I speak very little Italian, but we speak the mutual language of love for food and she teaches me how to make the most outstanding Italian meals even though I cannot understand what she is saying in Italian.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I am looking forward to the time for relaxation, eating some fantastic Italian food and enjoying a glass or two of Brunello di Montalcino in the Tuscan countryside with a bunch of really great people.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                    6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Just say 'prego' and have a fabulous visit!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          very jealous! Have a wonderful trip and please have an extra glass of Brunello for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          If you haven't read it, pick up Blood Bones and Butter. Some of my favorite scenes in the book are her cooking with her MIL, neither speaking each others language.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          http://www.amazon.com/Blood-Bones-But...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Thanks for all of the nice replies and good wishes. foodieX2, thanks for mentioning that book. My local library system has it available as a free download so I will be sure to download it tonight and take it with me. I have the hard copy of "The Soul of a Chef" packed in my carry-on bag and will read that one as well. I will be sure to also take your advice and have an extra glass of Brunello for you. You know you do not have to twist my arm to drink another Brunello. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Wow, what a dreamy trip!! I hope all you travel is safe and smooth, and we get some details when you get back!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Fowler

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Hey Fowler, have a great time. I recall 2 or 3 years ago when your S.O. posted the pictures on the other board from the last reunion the two of you went to in Tuscany. I dream of outdoor dinners like those and you certainly looked like you were enjoying yourself. I'll bet you don't miss that apron though! ;-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                              2. We had a guest coming last night at an uncertain time so I made Gypsy Stew. This is a recipe from Rosalea Murphy. She would serve it in the Dragon Bar next door to the Pink Adobe in Santa Fe. It a dish that sit a simmer for some time which is why we choose it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 onions quartered
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1 head of garlic, peeled and halved
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                3 – 4 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2 cartons chicken stock
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                12 pasilla chilies, roasted, peeled and chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                6 tomatos’s chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                ¼ cup sherry
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Jack cheese

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Put the four three ingredients in a pot. Bring to a boil, reduce to simmer and let go for an hour. Remove the chicken, and shred. Return to pot with next three ingredients and let it simmer another hour. Place a chunks of jack cheese in the bottom of bowls. Ladle stew over and serve.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. My man left for Philly this AM, so it's just the dude and I today. After indulging in more roast beef this morning, he hasn't been interested in anything I've put in front of him, so I'll swing by the vet and see if they have that high-caloric canned food that's been recommended to me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  As for me -- I'll probably finish the last shreds of the smoked pork shoulder languishing in the fridge, and there's heirloom tomatoes and ears of corn that could be used up somehow. Can't say that I currently care much.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Still not sure about leaving tomorrow or at all.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  16 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Hang in there, lingua and the Dude. Hopefully the high-caloric canned food piques his interest.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Hope the canned stuff works lingua! Best to the dude...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Lingua, I;m glad the man is getting back to well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        As for the Dude, I cannot, and I mean CANNOT, get the Big Lebowski out of my mind when you go there.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        LOLZ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Let me explain something to you. Um, I am not "Mr. Lebowski". You're Mr. Lebowski. I'm the Dude. So that's what you call me. You know, that or, uh, His Dudeness, or uh, Duder, or El Duderino if you're not into the whole brevity thinc"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Hahahahahaha.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "That rug really tied the room together, did it not? "

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        LOLZ.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: jjjrfoodie

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          One of our all-time favorites. The dude generally abides, but.... yeah. Not so much these days.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            When my last kitty was sick and not eating she could be tempted with chicken livers cooked in butter and mashed. They also gave her a B12 shot to stimulate her appetite. Good luck with the canned food. Can't blame you for being reluctant to leave his dudeness when he is feeling puny. I really hope he gets back to his old self soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              sending you and the dude big appetites! xoxo

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Dude's had a good run. Give him a few scratches for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sorry the dude (and his mum) are in this situation. I really hope that the dude can enjoy some nibbles along the way.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Edited to say I'm so sorry. I read wrong somewhere along the way :/
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Hugs to both of you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Sadly, the Dude will not recover from his latest health crisis. All good thoughts to Lingua. :(

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Oh no. That is awful news. I feel so bad for her. I wish that wasn't the case. Her heart must be breaking. Sending her big hugs.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Oh Roxlet... no.. I'm so very sorry. Poor Lingua. How sad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          My heart aches for lingua and the Dude.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            oh no, how sad. terrible news. Big hugs to lingua and her man.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh I am so sorry, My thoughts go out to Lingua…

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. We have leftover chicken and veggies from our cookout Saturday. Glad we got that in as we are on our fourth heavy rain storm since that lovely evening. There was a tornado in Greater Boston at noon and residential street flooding has occurred at both ends of the state. The garden is quite happy.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. This morning it was cool and rainy so I took some pasta sauce out of the freezer. Was just outside and it's hot and steamy, no kind of pasta weather at all. Hmmmm...

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. Chicken ala king according to my mom's recipe. That means chicken breast, red bell pepper, onion, mushrooms and pimentos in a cream sauce finished with an egg yolk and some sherry stirred in at the last minute. That will be served on toast triangles and I am making a cucumber salad with sour cream and dill dressing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                18 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I love the look of that cuke salad. If I weren't so fixated on tomato salads these days, I'd be making that every day. Soon, tho.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    I have some fresh picked that I can send ya to get that salad started. They are a bit ugly compared to the grocery store but are impeccably fresh. Loves me some cuke salad.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Mmm, I love that! I may do one similar this week to break out of my Asiany cukey salady rut.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Can you share the Asian cuke salad? I could use some other ways to use them up and James is four square against cold soup.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Sure! It's not a recipe per se, I just eyeball crap. Cukes sliced thin with shallot rings sliced even more thin and torn cilantro. Mix it with dressing of rice wine vinegar, soy and a bit of fish sauce, sesame oil, a tidbit of honey and minced bird chili (or Serrano). Top with chopped cashews or peanuts.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I eat this stuff incessantly in the summer, or pretty much anytime.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          That sounds delicious. I also eyeball things. I have a bad radar for picking recipes. It seems if I pick out a recipe, it will surely be bad. I don't know why.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Oh, I forgot lime juice! And lota of it. I just can't stand the tedium of exact measurements. I think it's why I'll never get the baking bug :D

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              I hear you. I never got the baking bug either. It's too structured for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      3rd attempt to reply

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      I must be the same generation as your mom. I made that chicken from a recipe in the Joy of Cooking when I was 22 and served it to my parents in puff pastry cups. mmmm

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: Berheenia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        I absolutely love this meal. Chicken ala king is one of my favorite childhood meals.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        What's in the cucumber dressing (besides sour cream and dill)? Anything? I've got a big one to use and if I eat one more lettuce salad, I'm gonna slug someone. So a new approach to using cukes would be much appreciated.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: gourmanda

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Parsley, apple cider vinegar, a bit of olive oil, salt, pepper and badia complete seasoning. It is very refreshing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Badia. How many times do I have to see this knowing there are several herb blends that Badia makes. Which blend are people using when they say, "Badia"?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            http://www.badiaspices.com/products/

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Badia Complete Seasoning. It is good in a ton of savory applications.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: suzigirl

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Many thanks, SG. As I recall I may have asked this in threads past. Somehow it didn't quite get programmed. THX VM

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. re: gourmanda

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Gourmanda, I'm still laughing 5 minutes after reading your post. I feel your cucumber pain, but it's Summertime after all and there are somethings up with we must put. (with apologies to Sir WC)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Right?! And not just cucumbers, but zucchini. Another one of each coming in tomorrow's share. Suzi--the cucumber salad was a nice accompaniment to our zucchini "pie/quiche" thing. Thanks!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: gourmanda

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I am so glad you liked it. It is tart and creamy at the same time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. alright i give. sick like dog. had taken the day off to tend to a lot of things that i haven't been able to and instead have spent another day in bed. actually using my sick day for sickness.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          however, that will not deter us from cubanos tonight. the BF will put them together, however - i've sent him links and notes to peruse; this is serious stuff, people. and of course, him being the artistic one, they'll probably be much prettier.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Blurgh. Feel better soon, mc! Cubanos to the rescue!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Double Blurgh! Hope dinner and a good night's sleep helps get rid of the buggies!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                sorry your sick! Kudos to the BF for taking the challenge!!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Sorry you are feeling bad. You have been fighting this for days. Hope the cubanos help you fight the funk. The pics sure looked promising for a great dinner. Hope they are shatteringly crisp.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Darn it MC, Summer colds are the worst. I hope this additional rest will push the recuperation along and you're feeling 100% very soon.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. Tonight is a simple dish of tagliatelle topped by sauce bolognese. The pasta is imported from Tuscany, Deb made the sauce using Marcella Hazan's recipe and meat that I ground.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      The Hazan recipe takes a bit of time and is best done a day ahead. The payoff is a good-smelling house on one day and a swell meal the next. House red will be on the counter, car stuff will be on the plasma.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Temperatures have been wonderfully mild here on the Sou'west Shore of Connecticut. I like it.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      6 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Our local salumeria sells imported Italian pasta and it tastes so much better than the US made, or even imported, dried. I just imagine the fantastic aromas that arose from your kitchen during the cooking of the sauce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Indeed, quality imported pasta makes a big difference. The bronze dyes also help by scuffing the surface a bit. This allows the sauce to cling slightly better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The sauce simmered on the stovetop for over four hours on Sunday. The kitchen smelled great.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            Steve - is the imported pasta readily available to you or something you need to search out? We tend to buy supermarket own label stuff - i.e. cheap and cheerful - but wonder if we should look out for something better (and then wonder if our palates are sufficiently developed to notice a difference.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Hi John,

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Higher-end grocery stores like Whole Foods carry quality pasta like Seggiano. You can find Seggiano pastas at the Whole Foods in Kensington. You can also find Seggiano at Selfridges and Fortnum&Mason. I suspect any quality salumeria carries a broad assortment of artisinal pastas. Shop around a bit and see what appeals to you.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Does a quality pasta make a difference? Absolutely.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: steve h.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Thanks, Steve.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                By co-incidence, Jan is having a day in London tomorrow. I'll see if she has time to go to F & M although I think it unlikely - her main aim is an exhibition at Tate Modern. Train doesnt get to London until midday and her return is at 7pm - fairly tight schedule.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                I can think of a couple of possible outlets in the north west who are possibly sufficiently upmarket to stock it so will try them as well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: Harters

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I think you'll have too much fun. Different pastas require different sauces. I suspect the kitchen in Harters Hall is up to the challenge.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Keep us posted as things develop.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      2. Grilled sousvide veal rib chop with red wine morel demi & truffle haystack potatoes . Preceded by prosciutto Di Parma e melone and accompanied by a nice cheap St. Emilion.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                         
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: rjbh20

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          The plate looks marvelous. Love dining al fresco. Everything taste better outside.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. aaand the cubano! BF made fries too, and a big green salad, and a nice bowl of fresh watermelon. the cubanos were excellent! you could really taste the garlicky pork through the richness of the swiss cheese and honey ham. delish. i saved a quarter of mine for lunch tomorrow.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: mariacarmen

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            I'd heart that MC if I didn't dislike that heart so much. LOL We've made cubanos but have danced around pernil using every other type of roast pork method. It's time we get cranking and cook some pernil.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              i love the heart! much better than the "recommend."

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              and yes, you must do the pernil. it's time.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2. My boys go crazy for lamb or roast chicken. Same with canned sardines. They also love, love, love the fish flavored hair ball stuff - maybe that could be mixed with food? Hope you find the right kitty tonic!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1 Reply
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: meatn3

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Thank you, meatn3. It seems like there is not much that entices him anymore these days, save for a few bites of roast beef.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. Actually WFD didn't involve much cooking at all aside from blanching the butterflied shrimp for tonight's coctel de camarones. My tomato plants produce multiple new fruit everyday, and I already had shrimp in the freezer. Chop, chop, chop and a few Keebler Club crackers were the perfect buttery accompaniment.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              We continue to have mid-to-high 80's temperatures along with the surprise sun showers yesterday at the coast. Also hubs and I are attempting to nurse back to health a white dove found in our neighborhood. We found it's mate 1 day prior, and it appears perky, and healthy. We've managed to administer honey water to it via medicine dropper and we're hoping for the best for the "love for life" bird couple.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              7 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                sounds very refreshing!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                and good for you two for helping the bird! hope we hear of a happy ending.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  I wonder if your doves will stay around after your ministrations. What a beautiful thing you're doing. Sending all the best wishes and hoping the dove gets better.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    The soup looks good - and I love that you're helping the dove - hope it heals and can get back with its mate!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It's day 3 for the found dove. Hubs and I stumbled on a way to get this little one a bit of much needed nutrients. Since it opens it's beak for an eye dropper-full of
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      the honey water we alternate in a drop of baby bird formula. Just like an infant, a spoon of banana, followed with a spoon of peas. Lol. It's still very wobbly on it's legs but it's so tender to hear the mate cooing to it behind closed doors. God bless the creatures.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        1. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Ohhhhh... this tugs. Baby bird formula. Can you stand it? Peas and banana. I hope all of this works. Pls keep us... OK me... UTD.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        2. re: letsindulge

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Your Coctel de Camarones looks fantastic. I especially love the bowl you used.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        3. Back from Loozyanna this evening, and traveling friend and I were completely beat, then had the delightful experience of walking into an apartment that had evidently flooded over the weekend due to a faulty fridge line. By the time we got there, the fridge had been fixed, excess water mopped up, and industrial fans were a'blazin' on the soaked carpet areas, which were fortunately limited to the hallway, bathroom, and a small portion of the living room, so nothing really got water-damaged, hooray(?)! They're scheduling the carpet cleaners for tomorrow, apparently. Poor Boots the cat is completely traumatized.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          So after all that, WFD turned out to be a chili cheese hot dog from Sonic. I even forgot to ask for mustard and onions to make it more palatable... oh well.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          At least the weather is lovely. Humidity up here seems to be remarkably less than in Florida, so I walk outside, think "How hot is it?" and then am continually shocked to see it's actually 90 or above. Louisiana, though, was a brief return to the sauna. It's good to be back.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          ETA: Forgot to mention that car food was a trip to Cracker Barrel. Chicken livers, fried okra and turnip greens. And biscuits.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          2 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          1. re: speakhandsforme

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            OUCH on the fridge flood! Sounds like the landlord done good with getting things cleaned up. Hope the kitty is better this morning having you home. :-)

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            1. re: speakhandsforme

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Bummer on the flood but sounds like the landlord is doing everything right. Chicken livers, fried okra, turnip greens and biscuits -- be still my heart!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            2. In spite of everything that happened over the week-end, including a tornado a couple of towns down the pike from us for heaven's sakes, G managed to put together several very nice meals. All from The Banh Mi Handbook, and then instead of Macaroni Monday we simply threw left-overs on a plate, complimented by a fresh salad, and called it dinner.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              WFD: Today is our CSF delivery and even though I don't know what kind of fish we'll be getting I've already decided to cook it with a Ratatouille since there are several eggplants, zucchini, and various other vegetables that ought to be cooked. I really love Ratatouille or it's Italian counterpart, Caponata. It covers a lot of territory and is great either warm or cold.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              5 Replies
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Me too, but I am alone in this house. I usually make ratatouille, but I really want to do a caponata. Do you have a recipe you particularly like?

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                1. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Honestly Roxlet, After all this time I just wing it. All the vegetables I have on hand that I think ought to be used up immediately go into the pot. First, in EVOO chopped onion and garlic are fried, Then sequentially toss in large diced zucchini, eggplant, fresh tomatoes, yellow squash, maybe a carrot, celery,. Let each saute for a couple of minutes. If the VGs look as if they're too dry a splash of either red or white wine is added. Next add S & P, add Pomi chopped tomatoes, fresh or dried basil & oregano, 2 t RPF.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  This bubbles away at a heavy simmer w a cantilevered cover till the VGs are just tender. It doesn't take too long... maybe it's a 1/2 hour, then I taste to see what stage they're at. A stir every now and then is a good thing. During the last few minutes heat is turned up to reduce the sauce a bit. Sometimes I add vinegar instead of wine plus throw some raisins into the pot for an agro dolce.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: Gio

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    That's great! Thanks so much!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. re: roxlet

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    This here is my favorite recipe for caponata. It's fairly involved (to me at least), but totally worth the effort. And makes a whole bunch, too.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 lb eggplant (preferably small but not Asian)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon coarse sea salt (preferably Sicilian)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 1/4 to 2 1/2 cups olive oil
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    11 garlic cloves (from 2 heads), chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2 tablespoons tomato paste (preferably from a tube)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 (28-oz) can whole Italian tomatoes, finely chopped and juice reserved
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    5 celery ribs, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1 large onion, chopped
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/4 cup drained bottled capers, rinsed
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/3 cup toasted slivered almonds
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/3 cup red-wine vinegar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/4 cup sugar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1/2 teaspoon black pepper

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cut eggplant into 1/2-inch cubes and transfer to a colander. Toss with 2 tablespoons sea salt. Let drain 1 hour.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    While eggplant drains, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a 4- to 5-quart heavy pot over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking, then sauté three fourths of garlic, stirring, until golden, about 1 minute. Add tomato paste and cook, stirring, 1 minute. Add tomatoes with their juice, then reduce heat and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, until thickened, 20 to 25 minutes.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Bring 3 cups salted water to a boil in a 1- to 1 1/2-quart saucepan, then cook celery until tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Drain in a colander and rinse under cold water to stop cooking.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Gently squeeze eggplant to remove excess moisture and pat dry. Heat 1/4 inch oil (about 2 cups) in a 12-inch heavy skillet over moderately high heat until it registers 360°F on thermometer, then fry eggplant in 4 batches, stirring and turning constantly with a slotted spoon, until browned and tender, 3 to 5 minutes per batch. (Return oil to 360°F between batches.) Transfer to paper towels.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Pour off all but 2 tablespoons oil from skillet, then reduce heat to moderate and cook onion and remaining garlic, stirring occasionally, until golden, about 10 minutes. Add tomato sauce, eggplant, celery, capers, vinegar, sugar, pepper, and remaining teaspoon sea salt and simmer, uncovered, stirring occasionally, 15 minutes. Cool to room temperature, uncovered, then chill, covered, at least 8 hours.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: linguafood

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Thanks, sounds fabulous, and very rich!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                2. Ran out of time to make dinner between the pool and yoga yesterday, so I just put together a quick chopped salad of kale, raisins, tomatoes, chevre, roasted almonds and maple balsamic vinaigrette. We supplemented with leftover Chinese.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Tonight: the stuffed peppers and eggplant

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  1. re: ChristinaMason

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Still no stuffed peppers. We had leftover lasagna, spicy chicken Italian sausage, and salad. I grated yellow squash and asparagus, added a good handful of quartered grape tomatoes and tossed with the last of the maple balsamic vinaigrette to marinate. That was combined with a chopped heart of Romaine and a goodly amount of goat cheese. I topped the salads with prosciutto crisps I made in the oven. It was delicious - almost tasted like a BLT.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  2. I am going to have corned beef and cabbage for dinner this evening-
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Cheating a little by using packaged corned beef.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Boiling the beef now on stove with pickling spices, onions, and pepper.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    1. re: jpr54_1

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Last night was another tasty rendition of fish tacos, with refritos on the side and really cool French beans that are dark purple until you cook them. Massively overpriced from the farmers' market ($5 for 250 g = $10 a pound) but they were outstanding steamed with a bit o' butter.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      A Bay Area Hound and her SO are arriving today so will be dining out for the next several days. First up, dim sum, then Vietnamese tonight, woot!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      It is very hot here (for Vancouver at least) so I'm quite happy to let someone else do the cooking!

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    2. Wow, I'm late to this party! The song Summertime can only make me think of one thing. A local flooring commercial. They are all narrated by the same grating woman, and this very short clip (not my own) sums up the feelings of an entire city of four million. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sYSJ3Z...
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Dinner last night was seared filet with brandy mushroom cream sauce. I got the recipe and idea from the cooking channel and made a handful of tweaks. It was quite tasty and totally diet-free! Sautéed spinach and grape tomatoes with garlic on the side.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Tonight is still undecided. I'm going to go to the market soon and see what strikes my fancy. I'm definitely in a Mediterranean mood. The ungodly heat returns tomorrow, so a few nights of takeout will be on tap.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      1. re: alliegator

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        "Diet-free" - I love it and am absolutely stealing that one.