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Dinner! 2010


Jmahl
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No pictures, but after finding some lovely gigantic zucchini and fresh fennel at the Farmer's Market this morning, I made stuffed zucchini boats and roasted fennel for dinner. I sliced the zucchini lengthwise, scooped out the insides and chopped it up, added a minced onion, a couple of minced garlic cloves, two eggs, one half pound each of ground veal and Tuscan sausage from Whole Foods, shredded Asiago cheese, chopped fresh basil and panko crumbs and mixed it all together. Restuffed the boats and sprinkled with Parmesan and then dumped a big can of crushed fire roasted tomatoes over the top. Baked at 400 degrees for about an hour and it was delicious. Fennel was less successful as it became a bit dried out and stringy, even though I'd tossed it with some olive oil and balsamic before putting it in the oven. Next time I'll braise it...

Katie M. Loeb
Booze Muse, Spiritual Advisor

Author: Shake, Stir, Pour:Fresh Homegrown Cocktails

Cheers!
Bartendrix,Intoxicologist, Beverage Consultant, Philadelphia, PA
Captain Liberty of the Good Varietals, Aphrodite of Alcohol

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kayb – I’m glad that you liked the shrimp and corn. When Maggie talked about it on her blog, she talked about how simple, but how amazingly good it was. She was RIGHT!

Loving the corn and black bean dishes, too! Time to make a bowlful of that. It goes with just about any summer meal that I can think of.

dcarch – your pork tenderloin is just awesome looking. So thin and crackly looking!

Mr. Kim smoked a leg of lamb Saturday:

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It was just as delicious and juicy and perfect as the last time:

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We also had roasted asparagus and potatoes:

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And possibly the LEAST appetizing looking dish I’ve ever served:

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These are wax beans from our CSA box. They tasted fine (stringy – my usual complaint about fresh beans), but, boy, they were ugly. I’ve never eaten wax beans before and the flavor isn’t different enough to put up with that horrible color. Regular green beans for me from now on.

Some lovely Russian black bread that we got at Whole Foods:

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Plated:

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Dinner tonight:

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Another breakfast for dinner from me. Salad, ham and Cheddar omelets and more of those lovely beans :hmmm: .

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Wonderful food, everyone. Kim, that smoked lamb looks great. I could eat that! :smile:

For dinner last night, a stirfry/braise of pork strips, green beans, garlic, fresno chiles, roasted chili paste (nam prik pow), and fresh basil.

In the wok, ready to be served over hot rice.

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To make this stirfry: Heat oil over high heat in a wok. Saute 3/4 lb tender pork strips until the meat is parcooked and browned. Remove to a bowl. Heat more oil in the wok, & toss in 3 cloves of garlic, chopped. Let cook briefly until softened. Add in 2 fresno chiles, slivered with seeds. Toss and cook for a minute or so. Add in 3/4 lb green beans, trimmed and cut into pieces. Toss and cook the green beans until they are slightly softened and glossy. Return the meat to the pan, & combine. Stir in 1/2 cup water, and 2-3 TB of roasted chili paste (nam prik pow). Cover the wok, lower the heat to moderate, & let the mixture cook until the beans are tender and the meat is cooked through. Check occasionally, and if necessary, add more water so the mixture doesn't burn. Uncover, season with 2 TB fish sauce and if desired, a few pinches of sugar. Add in 1 cup of fresh basil leaves (preferably Thai basil) and toss until wilted. Taste and adjust for fish sauce and/or salt. Serve hot over steamed rice.

For dessert, Strawberry Sorbet. The strawberries at the market have been great, very ripe and sweet.

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To make Strawberry Sorbet: Boil 2/3 cup sugar and 1/2 cup water over medium heat in a small saucepan for 5 mins. Let cool completely. (I put the syrup in a pyrex bowl and stick it in the freezer.) Wash, drain, and hull 4 cups (1 quart) of strawberries. Puree in a food processor or blender. Combine the berry puree with the cooled syrup. Add 1/4 tsp kirsch. Chill the mixture thoroughly, and freeze in an ice cream maker. My adaptation of the recipe in Lindsey Shere's Chez Panisse Desserts.

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Tonight we had a Roasted Split Chicken. I roasted the halves on a bed of giblets, onion slices, lemon quarters and a fresh thyme and rosemary bundle. The chicken was really juicy and the house smells amazing! We had it with garlic mashed potatoes, pan gravy and buttered green peas.

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Dinner time found more blistering hot temps, with much more humidity than coastal SoCal is used to. No way was I turning on the oven, nor the range top.

Luckily, I'd found the first beautiful figs of the season at my Trader Joe's yesterday. They were perfect. I had 1/2 an 8-oz. block of cream cheese that needed to be used, so I let it sit at room temp for about 1/2 an hour (all it needed in this heat to soften....), minced up a couple of fat garlic cloves, and mashed in maybe 2 oz. of crumbled feta cheese until the mix was fairly smooth. Smeared that over the cut side of my halved figgy gems, sprinkled the cheese mix with fresh ground pepper, and wrapped a ribbon of prosciutto around the little package.

They were sublime.

With a crusty pain rustique roll, and a ripe heirloom tomato (again thanks to TJ's for both these) sprinkled with coarse sea salt, and a very cold glass of Chardonnay, it was an entirely lovely, and cool, evening.

No pix, my brain was too melted from the heat of the day...maybe next time I make the little figgy flavor bombs. Because there *will* be a next time.

--Roberta--

"Let's slip out of these wet clothes, and into a dry Martini" - Robert Benchley

Pierogi's eG Foodblog

My *outside* blog, "A Pound Of Yeast"

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Kim, every time I see that smoked lamb, it makes me want to go to the store and get one and smoke it that day. Which is what I'll be doing here in about 20 minutes. I'm not one to complain about working from home on Fridays.

Dcarch, I just bought a deep fryer. That tenderloin - wow.

So, I attempted three pizzas yesterday, and let's just say I'm out of practice. The first turned into a calzone, more or less, and the other two had too thick of a crust. They were good and tasty, but I expect better. I also need much more practice with the 'peel to stone' action.

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Kim, every time I see that smoked lamb, it makes me want to go to the store and get one and smoke it that day. Which is what I'll be doing here in about 20 minutes. I'm not one to complain about working from home on Fridays.

Dcarch, I just bought a deep fryer. That tenderloin - wow.

So, I attempted three pizzas yesterday, and let's just say I'm out of practice. The first turned into a calzone, more or less, and the other two had too thick of a crust. They were good and tasty, but I expect better. I also need much more practice with the 'peel to stone' action.

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Thanks, Rico! I'll pass the compliment on to Mr. Kim. Can't wait to see pics of your lamb. I think that pizza looks wonderful - gooey and crisp all at once - EXACTLY like pizza should be!

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Grilled Steak with Herbs, oven fries made from Yukon Gold potatoes, and a cherry tomato salad. The tomatoes were the first of the season from my CSA. I split the tomatoes and tossed them with garlic-infused extra virgin olive oil & a dash of salt. That's all, & they tasted so good. When I grill steak with herbs, I use the fresh herbs I have around. Today's mix was Thai basil, oregano, and thyme. The original recipe comes from Alice Waters' The Art of Simple Food. It's available here:

http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/grilled-sirloin-steak-with-herbs

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I had a taste for grilling some lamb last weekend. I really don't care for those boned, rolled and tied leg of lamb roasts that you find in the supermarkets. I just have some sort of problem dealing with those darn nets the meat is wrapped into and I often find the meat is broken into uneven chunks. I prefer to buy a bone-in leg of lamb and butcher it myself. Takes some work but then I get two roasts-the one I boned and butterflied and grilled on the barbecue, a bone for the stockpot, then a small bone-in leg of lamb I put in the freezer to roast this fall.

I marinated the roast in a mixture of mint, cilantro, basil, parsley, garlic, olive oil and pepper. Just before grilling I seasoned the roast with some salt, that's it. I used regular charcoal briquets and grilled the lamb for about 20 minutes per side over indirect heat.

To accompany the lamb I simply cut some heads of romaine in half and dipped them in water to rinse off any dirt, then brushed them with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper and grilled them for about 5 minutes a side. I served the romaine with some of the same, (yet fresh), marinade used on the lamb.

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Dinner time found more blistering hot temps, with much more humidity than coastal SoCal is used to. No way was I turning on the oven, nor the range top.

Luckily, I'd found the first beautiful figs of the season at my Trader Joe's yesterday. They were perfect. I had 1/2 an 8-oz. block of cream cheese that needed to be used, so I let it sit at room temp for about 1/2 an hour (all it needed in this heat to soften....), minced up a couple of fat garlic cloves, and mashed in maybe 2 oz. of crumbled feta cheese until the mix was fairly smooth. Smeared that over the cut side of my halved figgy gems, sprinkled the cheese mix with fresh ground pepper, and wrapped a ribbon of prosciutto around the little package.

They were sublime.

With a crusty pain rustique roll, and a ripe heirloom tomato (again thanks to TJ's for both these) sprinkled with coarse sea salt, and a very cold glass of Chardonnay, it was an entirely lovely, and cool, evening.

No pix, my brain was too melted from the heat of the day...maybe next time I make the little figgy flavor bombs. Because there *will* be a next time.

I would kill to be able to get fresh figs here in Kansas. I have fig envy.

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pierogi – the figs sound fantastic. I found a wonderful sounding recipe for fig-lemon preserves a few weeks ago and have been wanting to try it. They had beautiful looking figs at Costco last weekend and I was desolate that I didn’t have time to make the preserves.

David – that lamb is absolutely gorgeous and so is the romaine. I love grilled romaine, but haven’t made it myself yet.

Shelby-girl!!! Hey! Haven’t ‘seen’ you lately. I must not be hanging out at the cool eG spots!

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RobirdsTX, once again you and I have the same idea, this time the black bean and corn salad. Don't you love it? I've also been known to just spoon it over sliced avocado and eat it...or spread crostini with mashed avocado and lime juice, and spoon that on top.

Dcarch, I had my first deep-fried crispy spinach recently in a restaurant....I don't normally care for cooked spinach, but this was wonderful. How hot do you have your oil, and what kind of oil do you use?

Dyjee, love the look of that stir-fry. I have some pork in the freezer that may call for that....

It's been a nutso week, so little cooking. I did make chicken quesadillas last night.

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And today I've put my first-ever attempt at corned beef into the brine and popped it into the fridge. Had to adjust the Alton Brown recipe slightly, because I could not find plain old saltpetre, and wound up using Morton Tender Quick, the sugar-salt-saltpetre combo. I used two cups in a gallon of brine for a six pound brisket, which is reposing in a giant zip-loc in my fridge for the next 12 days. Half of it will be corned beef, the other half I'm going to put on the smoker and make pastrami. Wish me luck.

Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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All stunning dinners, especially the fried egg thing. I'm a sucker for egg dishes. :)

No-cook dinner tonight, with outside temps reaching 90 degrees (with the humidity it feels like an oven), so...

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Background, in the ramekin: Scallop and plum ceviche, courtesy of Mark Bittman's recipe, viewable here: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/14/dining/14mini.html?scp=1&sq=scallop+ceviche&st=cse (I subbed in cilantro instead of tarragon)

Foreground: A variation on chopped salad. This version has heirloom tomatoes, cantaloupe, apricots, Sungold cherry tomatoes, scallions and mint, with a dressing of a scant pinch of sea salt and 2 tablespoons lime juice.

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Aloo gobi (potato and cauliflower curry), with mint raita over steamed jasmine rice

If you've ever had aloo gobi in an Indian restaurant, homemade is WORLDS better, with cleaner/lighter flavors. Restaurant versions are typically carbohydrates in a bowl.

It is positively unfair to tease us with that DELICIOUS photo and not give the recipe.... may i be so bold as to ask for it please.....

Also Pierogi your fig "bombs" sound fab, looking forward to trying those myself

791.JPG Its been achingly hot here too so a couple of light suppers - shop bought hummus and veggies with home made tabbouleh and feta

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and then home made mouttabel with the left over tabbouleh and veggies, i've also got the remainder of a 7kg watermelon (the smallest i could find) in my fridge which is being used as a salad with walnuts and feta cheese and also injected with tequila for a picnic at the beach

"Experience is something you gain just after you needed it" ....A Wise man

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-------------.dcarch – your pork tenderloin is just awesome looking. So thin and crackly looking!Mr. Kim smoked a leg of lamb Saturday-------

Thanks. In the first picture you can see the knife that I make which is razor sharp to cut the pork. I noticed that you have a way to orchestrate a meal with all compatible dishes that compliment each other.

----.Dcarch, I had my first deep-fried crispy spinach recently in a restaurant....I don't normally care for cooked spinach, but this was wonderful. How hot do you have your oil, and what kind of oil do you use?Dyjee, love the look of that stir-fry. I have some pork in the freezer that may call for that....----

I just used vegetable oil, I am not sure how hot it was. I never measure when I deep fry.

I made a tomato mozzarella cheese salad tonight. Tomatoes were from my garden, called Lime Green Salad (and some cherry tomatoes.

dcarch

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Grilled meat again, this time beef hasina kebabs. I picked the recipe up twenty years ago from Pat Chapman's Curries; it's a long time since I looked at it.

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The beef is a lean and tender cut that was going spare after a barbecue yesterday. I altered Pat's hasina recipe by using a lot of knife-minced garlic in place of most of the onion; otherwise it's marinaded in salt, chopped fresh red & green chillis, peanut oil, a little lemon juice and some home-blended curry paste. Onion segments marinaded together.

The tomatoes came off the plants on my dearly-cherished balcony :rolleyes:

Edited by Blether (log)

QUIET!  People are trying to pontificate.

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Penne with manouri cheese, fried breadcrumbs, garlic, olive oil and parsley.

Manouri is a Greek semi-soft sheep's milk cheese. Substitute feta or goat cheese if unavailable.

This is a riff on penne con cacio e pepe. You can make this in 10 minutes ... 15 if you're not adept at peeling garlic cloves.

Prepare pasta according to package directions. Cook until al dente. Drain and reserve 2 tablespoons pasta cooking water.

Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a skillet, add thinly sliced garlic and scallions to the pan. Fry until garlic takes on a little color, about 30 seconds. Stir in 3 tablespoons breadcrumbs. If you don't have freshly made on hand, you can sub in plain unflavored breadcrumbs from the corner supermarket. Fry crumbs until golden brown. Do not burn. Remove pan from heat.

Add pasta to the skillet. Toss well. Add pasta cooking water to the pan if penne seems dry. Stir in manouri cheese and a handful of chopped parsley. Taste for salt and pepper, then serve at once.

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Blether, that recipe for hasina kebabs sounds delicious.

SobaAddict, I liked your penne with sungold tomatoes, & decided to do something with the half box of penne that's been sitting in my cupboard.

For tonight's dinner here, a starter of Baked Artichokes with Onions, Lemon, Black Olives & Mint, from Judy Rodgers' Zuni Cafe Cookbook. My favorite way to prepare artichokes. The artichokes cook slowly over a confit of onions. I love the aroma of the ingredients when I'm prepping the dish--the smells of olive oil, lemon & mint mixed with the sliced onions.

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The recipe is here. My cookbook says 4 cloves of garlic, not 2, & that's what I like to use. I usually cook the recipe with kalamata olives, & it still tastes good.

http://www.cookstr.com/recipes/baked-artichokes-with-onions-lemons-black-olives-and-mint

Followed by Penne in Spicy Fresh Tomato Sauce with Garlic, Olives, and Capers. (The olive jar got a workout tonight.) I wanted to cook something like pasta alla puttanesca, but not with the traditional tomato sauce. I had all these great heirloom tomatoes from the market, so I put together a fresh tomato sauce from those.

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To cook this pasta dish: Start boiling 1/2 lb of dry pasta and let it cook while preparing the sauce. In a large saute pan, heat 1/4 cup olive oil over medium heat, and add in 4 cloves of chopped garlic. Let cook briefly, then toss in 4 shallots, thinly sliced. Let the garlic and shallots cook until they are very soft and golden. Toss in 3 TB of coarsely chopped capers, 3 TB of chopped olives, and 1/4 tsp or more of red pepper flakes. Cook for a minute or so. Pour in 2 TB olive oil, let it heat, then add in 4 cups of tomatoes, preferably a variety of heirloom tomatoes, cut up into bite-size chunks. Let the tomatoes soften and release their juices, but still keep most of their shape. When the tomatoes have softened and warmed through, toss in 2 TB chopped fresh basil. Taste & adjust for salt; the sauce should be well-seasoned. Gently combine with the hot cooked pasta. (I barely combine the pasta and the sauce because I want to keep the tomato pieces whole. When you remove the mixture from the pan, it will combine some more.) Serve in a warmed bowl, garnished with more fresh basil and grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese.

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A dessert of Blackberry Ice Cream with sliced white nectarines. I couldn't resist the blackberries at the farmers market. I tasted a berry & almost swooned. But I had plenty of fruit at home, the berries were not cheap, and I walked away from the stall...for about five paces. Then I swiveled around & bought the berries. The vendor thought I was funny & knocked a dollar off the price. :biggrin:

The berries were worth it! This was one of the best ice creams I've ever made. It tastes like blackberry jam with cream, and basically, that's all it is.

To make Blackberry Ice Cream: Puree 3 cups of blackberries in the food processor. With a wooden spoon, push the puree through a fine sieve set over a bowl to remove the seeds. (Turn on some music while you do this.) When you have at least 1 cup of sieved puree, you can stop. In a small saucepan, heat 3/4 cup sugar with 1 cup whipping cream, stirring the mixture until the sugar dissolves. Remove from the heat. Stir in another 1 cup of cream and the sieved puree. Taste and add a few drops of vanilla. If desired, add some fresh lemon juice, a few drops at a time, so that the mixture tastes bright. Chill the mixture thoroughly and freeze in an ice cream maker. My adaptation of the recipe in Lindsey Shere's Chez Panisse Desserts.

I'm lovin' the summer produce at the market these days. :cool:

Edited by djyee100 (log)
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I love pork loin. In the summer, it's probably my favorite cut, because it's so simple to prepare and so good and feeds a good-sized crowd. This was on the grill Sunday:

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Tonight, it was stuffed pattypan squash. The stuffing was scooped-out squash flesh, cheese and sausage. OK, but it needed a lighter sausage; I'll make that adjustment next time.

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Don't ask. Eat it.

www.kayatthekeyboard.wordpress.com

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