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Dinner 2015 (Part 6)

Anna N

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Franconian smoke beer braised pheasant legs (imported from north eastern UK), with juniper berries, garlic and Speck/smoked air cured pork belly. Drank the same beer that was used in the braise.


Hope you can see something in this brown mess.





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This is a recipe I cut out of the NYTimes some months ago - a Sam Sifton column.  Chicken Shawarma.  This is a dress rehearsal for the meal that I am always responsible for on Christmas Eve for extended family.



Chicken thighs marinated in lemon juice, olive oil, cumin, turmeric, paprika, pepper flakes then roasted with quartered red onions.




Served over rice pilaf (it should have been basmati rice but I didn't have any to my surprise). Topped with white sauce ( yogurt, mayo, lemon juice and garlic) and red sauce ( ketchup cooked down with red wine vinegar and hot sauce) with chopped tomatoes and cucumbers and olives. Fried eggplant with garlic, pine nuts and parsley as a side. 

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If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. Cicero

But the library must contain cookbooks. Elaina

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Lamb with pickling spices (achar gosht), a Bengali recipe that is listed in the Uttar Pradesh section of Madhur Jaffrey's A Taste of India.


I'd made this before so knew to make some changes... 1/4 tsp salt for 2 pounds of lamb never seemed right. I subbed ghee for the specified vegetable oil. I got bone-in shoulder instead of the boneless specified, which meant a longer cooking time. And I doubled the amount of lemon juice.


It's an odd recipe - a semi-braise with almost no liquid. The meat simmers in the copious quantity of ghee plus its own rendered fat, and then a very small amount of lemon juice. The result is dry on the outside, juicy and falling apart on the inside, and incredibly tart, aromatic and spicy.


You start by stuffing slit chiles with a mixture of whole spices: cumin seeds, black mustard seeds, fenugreek seed and nigella seed:




A bunch of whole spices then go in the oil (bay leaf, cinnamon, black cardamom, whole peppercorns and cloves), followed by onions, and then after they are browned, the lamb (which I salted as it browned, French-style):




Once the lamb browns, you add a ginger-garlic-onion paste and brown that thoroughly (and really thoroughly - 10 minutes - needs a lot of attention). Then salt, turmeric, cayenne and a ton of ground coriander seeds, well mixed. This simmers for a while tightly covered, then you add the chiles and lemon juice:




I served it with Tilde rice and apple raita with black cumin seed:



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I pulled the aforementioned rump roast out of the fridge yesterday, set it in a roasting pan, and seared it for 10 minutes in a 500-degree oven. It turned out with a lovely dark crust, and a beautiful rare inside, not quite fork tender after four hours SV at 125 degrees.


But -- it had very little flavor, once I got past the coffee-ancho rub on the exterior. I know rump is a very lean cut and thus has little fat or collagen to lend flavor, but I really thought the SV cook and the overnight in the fridge afterward would allow the seasoning to penetrate a bit.


Any suggestions out there on how to cook rump roast? One comes in my beef order every year, and I have yet to cook it in a fashion I enjoy it.

Don't ask. Eat it.


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Stir-fried loofah with pork.  Mướp Xào Thịt Heo, one version.  Closely based on this recipe.


I used angled loofah (Luffa acutangula) and Berkshire pork loin sliced up, and lots of scallions.

Peanut oil, sliced-up red cipollini onion, sauté till browning; pork slices (pre-marinated w/ sea salt, white pepper, palm sugar, corn starch, some oil), lightly crushed white parts of scallions trimmed to ~2 inches, "stir-fry" till half-done (more or less); de-ridged loofah sliced into rounds, fish sauce [Red Boat], fold/toss around, some water, stir some more, cover for a minute or two; more white pepper, trimmed green/upper parts of scallions (~2 inch pieces), a bit more palm sugar & fish sauce, toss around. Serve.


Water spinach (kangkong a.k.a. ong choy a.k.a. rau muống; Ipomoea aquatica) stir-fried w/ chopped smashed garlic & a sliced de-seeded hot long green chilli. 


A modified rau muống xào tỏi.

I skipped the fish sauce (or oyster sauce) customarily added and simply salted it.

Hot peanut oil, salt, garlic, sliced chilli, trimmed washed water spinach. Toss around on high flame, cover briefly. Serve.


Eaten with lots of white rice, of course.

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Kayb --  wonder  if you had a Jaccard  ( one of those Poky things ) things !!  You could do a little Jaccarding  with the added spice on top the day before..  that's before you cook?


Just a thought!!

Edited by Paul Bacino (log)

Its good to have Morels

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Huiray, thank you for giving the basics.   That looks so good.  I need to make it. 


Last night's dinner.   Two Pizzas. Dough was made Sunday and left in the fridge overnight.  Half Double 00 flour and half my regular bread flour.





Topped with olives, tomatoes, sliced garlic and basil.




This one had homemade Italian sausage and mushrooms.




And there was enough dough left for a small batard. Sliced this morning for breakfast.

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Shelby – your Yorkies look wonderful!  So glad you tried them.  Even without heating the pan first it looks like you got a nice rise!!  And what a gorgeous roast!


happysnapperorgans – this recipe makes the best Yorkies I’ve ever eaten (including those made by my English relatives).  I crisp them up in the toaster oven the next day and they are STILL good.  The pan that Shelby used and holding the batter for a long time seem to be the secret! (BTW – I’d LOVE to know the origin of your name!)


Steve – fried oysters and green tomatoes.  Got my attention.



Jessica’s appetizers for Thanksgiving dinner at my MIL’s – crostini topped with goat cheese, pancetta and red wine poached figs:



Those bacon wrapped Club crackers with brown sugar:


These were almost gone before I could get a picture.  Both things were delicious.


A little giggle.  This is the gravy that my distinctly odd MIL saved:


The glasses are for comparison.  About the size of a shot glass and not half full. 


Last night - Oven ribs:


Just cooked in foil and then topped with Montgomery Inn BBQ sauce and honey.  Good, but smoked or grilled would have been better.  But for a rainy weekday, they were very welcome!  Plated with asparagus, corn and green beans:


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Needed a quick dinner tonight

Patagonian scallops tossed with guaillo, ancho and morita powder and seared. Tossed on top of a toasted corn tortilla topped with black beans laced with a chipotle purée I make, shredded lettuce, cilantro and diced tomatoes


Edited by scubadoo97 (log)
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It's my husband's birthday - this was his requested dinner. Pasta with cauliflower sautéed in olive oil and briefly steamed, taken out of the pan. More olive oil added, garlic browned, anchovies added and mashed and the cauliflower put back in. Parsley and bread crumbs added just before mixing the sauce with the pasta. Plus, of course (it's me) a salad. The wine was a Centine Toscana 2013 - very nice. My traditional birthday present to him is a dozen bottles of wine - this was one of them. It feels like cheating since I get to share the wine. :raz:

Edited by ElainaA (log)
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If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need. Cicero

But the library must contain cookbooks. Elaina

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Ann_T, you're welcome and thanks too.






Pork & beef+tendon balls [Venus] plus yellow & orange carrots simmered in fresh chicken stock/broth. Lots of Chinese-type spinach (washed & trimmed of course) folded in and simmered for less than a minute after they were wilted. Heat shut off, roasted vermicelli [Ahmed Foods] folded in/softened into the soup. Eat.

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Ann--Your pizzas always make me hungry.


Scuba and LiamsAunt--Scallops!  I need to see if I have some frozen, your dishes look SO good.


Baselerd--What I wouldn't give for one of those spring rolls.  *drool*


Norm--Your meals always look so perfect.  I have a nice ham bone in the freezer, might have to copy you.  And, I love your table centerpiece.


We get a lot of bang for our buck when we buy a prime rib.  I re-heated some leftovers the other night and made popovers again.  This time I didn't screw up the recipe and boy, they turned out great.  Ronnie really really likes them.




Last night we had the last of the prime rib.  Sandwiches on pretzel rolls.  I bought the rolls.  First time having them.  Need to find a good recipe and make them at home.  Darn good.




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Prime rib leftovers are a wonderful luxury, Shelby. :-)

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