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Dinner 2016 (Part 9)


Steve Irby
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 A simple stirfry with tofu. 

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

...I just let people know about something I made for supper that they might enjoy, too. That's all it is. (Nigel Slater)

"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

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3 hours ago, mgaretz said:

El Pollo Loco-style chicken again.  This time I forgot to add the yellow food coloring!  Served with pinto beans doctored with a bit of Sweet Baby Ray's Hickory BBQ sauce, salad and the last of the Old Soul Zin.

 

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So I Googled El Polo Loco chicken and it says it's fired grilled. Are there specific spices that it is cooked with? Looks great!

 

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16 hours ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

Well, I had dinner, but it is a sad tale. Everything on the plate was pretty bad, and worse, I was completely responsible for this gustatory failure.

 

My husband did not excoriate anything, nor did he praise it, as he usually does. He did not eat more than a few forkfuls. I was similarly disappointed, but I choked mine down because I was hungry.

 

I served the leftover salt and pepper shrimp, and as I had been warned, it loses its crispness if not eaten quickly. I ate a couple of heads and tails and most of the legs, and peeled the bodies and ate those. My husband ate one, but spit most of it out. Peeling his own shrimp is just not something he's interested in doing. They were so good the first time fresh cooked, but this dish does not lend itself to leftovers.

 

I had a stash of purple hull peas in the freezer that I had been anticipating since I bought them. They were frozen from fresh. They were the mealiest pulses I believe I've ever eaten.

 

I made a salad with lemon tahini dressing, green bell pepper, grated carrot, iceberg lettuce, peeled store bought cucumber and a garden tomato. It was a waste of the garden tomato, that was very good when I chomped on the stem core and a wedge I snitched while preparing the salad. The dressing was fine when I tasted it for seasoning, but the finished dish sucked hard. I really don't know what happened, but I think I prefer a leaf lettuce with lemon tahini dressing.

 

It doesn't help that my husband brought home a nasty respiratory infection that is messing with our taste, smell and ability to even draw breath. Yeah, I'm sick. That's my lame excuse, but I think this is one of the worst meals I have ever had, where every single dish was really, really bad.

 

I also made a creamy herb sauced angel hair pasta. I later figured out why it was sticking together so badly. I forgot to add the butter! I have made this dish a hundred times or more.

 

Bless his heart, my husband requested the leftovers for lunch. xD I knew he wouldn't eat the shrimp, so I gave him the purple hull peas and some of the pasta with his container of cantaloupe he did not eat yesterday in favor of the catfish sandwich I also sent. Every thing else went down the garbage disposal. I almost never do that, but I could not face this terrible food again. If my husband is smart, he will ditch the food in the construction dumpster, except the cantaloupe, get one of his guys to bring him takeout, and bring the container home pretending he ate it. 

 

Well tomorrow is another day. I am sure dinner will be better then. Well I sure hope so anyway.

 

It's difficult when a great cook like yourself has an off day. Just wipe it from your memory and take care. Feel better soon.

 

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1 hour ago, demiglace said:

 

So I Googled El Polo Loco chicken and it says it's fired grilled. Are there specific spices that it is cooked with? Looks great!

 

 

Yes.  According to the "official" recipe it's marinated in pineapple juice, vinegar, lime juice, oil, fresh garlic, oregano, finely ground chile, salt, pepper and yellow food coloring.  I marinate overnight and I substitute a 50/50 blend of orange and pineapple juice for the straight pineapple juice and some sriracha for the ground chile.  They grill it on an open flame grill (gas) and the chickens are cut in half when grilled, then chopped into breast/wing/thigh/drumstick after cooking.  These days I buy the breasts and thighs in the "value pack" when they are on sale, portion them into double meal sizes (2 breasts, 4 thighs), seal them with the marinade on a low vacuum setting on my chamber sealer (because I want the marinade to be able to move) and marinate in the fridge, turning every so often.  Then I cook one pack and freeze the remaining pack or packs.  The double meal size gives us leftovers for the next night.

 

I cook them on my pellet grill at 425F for about 45 minutes and I don't turn them during cooking.  If anyone wants the recipe measurements, I am glad to post them.

Edited by mgaretz (log)
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Mark

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2 hours ago, mgaretz said:

 

Yes.  According to the "official" recipe it's marinated in pineapple juice, vinegar, lime juice, oil, fresh garlic, oregano, finely ground chile, salt, pepper and yellow food coloring.  I marinate overnight and I substitute a 50/50 blend of orange and pineapple juice for the straight pineapple juice and some sriracha for the ground chile.  They grill it on an open flame grill (gas) and the chickens are cut in half when grilled, then chopped into breast/wing/thigh/drumstick after cooking.  These days I buy the breasts and thighs in the "value pack" when they are on sale, portion them into double meal sizes (2 breasts, 4 thighs), seal them with the marinade on a low vacuum setting on my chamber sealer (because I want the marinade to be able to move) and marinate in the fridge, turning every so often.  Then I cook one pack and freeze the remaining pack or packs.  The double meal size gives us leftovers for the next night.

 

I cook them on my pellet grill at 425F for about 45 minutes and I don't turn them during cooking.  If anyone wants the recipe measurements, I am glad to post them.

 

 

mgaretz, we had one of these at Maynard and Kildaire Farm Roads for a few years. Many years ago, the Los Tres Magueyes Mexican Restaurant took over the site. I have no idea why El Pollo closed, because I thought they were great, and got many work lunches from there. I remember when they installed the large gas line to the place for El Pollo Loco. It was pretty disruptive because that area has been developed at saturation for years, (at least for our mostly one story community) and they accidentally cut some other utility lines. There are none of the restaurants in the area now.

 

I would love your recipe details, although I'll be cooking the chix over charcoal, but I don't think that will hurt it at all.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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I made spaghetti and sliced kielbasa cooked in the same pasta  pot. In a 10"/25 cm skillet, I sauteed a huge crushed clove of garlic slowly in 3T butter meanwhile. I had also peeled and chopped the stem from a broccoli crown and cut the florets into small pieces. The stems were added right to the pasta boiling pot in the last five minutes of cooking, and the florets went in a minute later. I added pasta cooking water, a little crushed red pepper, and a little Knorr Caldo de Pollo chicken bouillon powder to the garlic butter. I added a bunch more crushed pepper to my portion and some grated Parm to the plated dishes, including the portion I reserved for my husband's lunch tomorrow. This was served only with a side of North Carolina muscadine grapes that were halved and seeded before plating. He did mention the tough skins, but I love that about these grapes. Such flavor, that can't be approached with a more mainstream variety!

 

This time, be both ate everything on our plates. I plated most of the sausage on my husband's dinner and lunch plates, because he likes it a lot better than I do. I like the broccoli/garlic butter spaghetti without it, but did not dare serve a meatless dinner tonight after last night's FUBAR meal.

 

He brought home his empty containers today, and either he ate them or he dumped them. I don't wish to know. I could not have done a repeat, but you have to do certain things in order to tolerate each other for 17 years, I have found. Anyway, I'm sure he'll be genuinely happy with his lunch tomorrow.

 

Hopefully, the evil kitchen spirits that plagued me yesterday have moved on.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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14 hours ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

 

mgaretz, we had one of these at Maynard and Kildaire Farm Roads for a few years. Many years ago, the Los Tres Magueyes Mexican Restaurant took over the site. I have no idea why El Pollo closed, because I thought they were great, and got many work lunches from there. I remember when they installed the large gas line to the place for El Pollo Loco. It was pretty disruptive because that area has been developed at saturation for years, (at least for our mostly one story community) and they accidentally cut some other utility lines. There are none of the restaurants in the area now.

 

I would love your recipe details, although I'll be cooking the chix over charcoal, but I don't think that will hurt it at all.

 

All the ones near us in the East Bay closed long ago (but SoCal has tons).  They did just open one fairly close, but still a 20 minute drive.

 

Anyway, here is the marinade recipe.  This is for 1 chicken, or like I do, 2 breasts and 4 thighs.

 

1 tbs white vinegar

2 cloves garlic, minced

1 tsp salt

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1/8 tsp pepper

1/2 tsp sriracha

6 ozs of pineapple/orange juice (see below)

2 tbs lime juice

1 tbs olive oil

8 drops of yellow food coloring (optional)

 

For the juice, I use the small 6 oz cans from Dole.  They make a Pineapple/Orange blend, but it can be hard to find in that size.  (The cans come in a 6 pack and they are perfect for this recipe as you have no leftover juice and you don't even have to measure.)

 

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Mark

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Last night's dinner was sandwich night.  Option one was a riff on a grouper "reuben" I have on vacation sometimes, but of course I can't get grouper here.  This was made with leftover haddock from the prior evening's fish tacos.  It bears no resemblance to a real reuben, but it's tasty.

 

reuben.jpg

 

And option two was a seared salmon on ciabatta with avocado mashed with onions and a few other things and topped with bacon.  I saw this idea in one of Ina Garten's cookbooks.   All the components were good individually but for me personally they did not really go together in the sandwich.

 

salmon sandwich.jpg

 

Now I get to grill tonight's dinner in the pitch black.  Summer is truly over.

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We had baked spaghetti and sourdough bread.  The spaghetti was like a simple lasagna with spaghetti instead. I left out some of the cheese because I thought it had enough without it.  The sourdough was a raw loaf I put in the freezer a month or so ago, thawed out and baked for dinner tonight.

DSCN3751.jpg

DSCN3753.jpg

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Several meals:

Grilled chicken breast with tomato chutney, grilled veggies (zucchini, tomato, onion, red bell pepper) and white/wild rice pilaf with leeks, topped with fried leeks.

DSC01668.jpg

 

Grill smoked steel head trout with golden beet/horseradish relish, potatoes and salad.

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Grilled pork chop with creamed leeks, apples sautéed in butter and finished with brandy and garlic mashed potatoes. Not the best plating. It isn't something I usually think about.

DSC01672.jpg

 

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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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The continued Shirataki Noodle experiment:

 

This Tofu Noodle:

Marinated ( macaroni noodles ) in a tomatillo sauce w Corona Beans/ Pickled carrot/ Maple Bacon/ chili flake/ parsemilo- 

 

My least favorite texture noodle .. cut..  just weird

29845240855_e8c69ff9d0_o.jpg

 

 

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Its good to have Morels

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19 minutes ago, Paul Bacino said:

The continued Shirataki Noodle experiment:

 

This Tofu Noodle:

Marinated ( macaroni noodles ) in a tomatillo sauce w Corona Beans/ Pickled carrot/ Maple Bacon/ chili flake/ parsemilo- 

 

My least favorite texture noodle .. cut..  just weird

29845240855_e8c69ff9d0_o.jpg

 

 

I've never seen Shirataki like that, did you make them ?

Edited by sartoric
Correct spelling (log)
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We had part of a thick hickory smoked ham steak with over easy eggs, muscadines, 1 homemade blueberry pancake each from the freezer and one slice of toast to sop up the egg yolk. I was going to make biscuits, but as the latest development in my summer long battle with the landlord, they asked me to cut off the air conditioning, until tomorrow to dry out the condensation backup so they can try applying a sealant. This won't work either, but I'm complying for now, so no oven tonight. I missed the biscuits, and if they don't show up tomorrow before it gets really hot again, the air is going back on. :P

 

The rest of the ham steak is probably going to end up in a quiche later.

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> ^ . . ^ <

 

 

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On 9/18/2016 at 6:19 PM, Anna N said:

image.jpeg

 

Lamb chops and grilled hearts of palm with a balsamic glaze. 

 

Never thought of grilling hearts of palm. Now on my list.

 

On 9/18/2016 at 8:20 PM, robirdstx said:

Meatloaf with extra bbq sauce and buttered Green Beans

 

image.jpeg

 

Been jonesing for some meat loaf, too. But per @rotuts, no bell pepper for me!

 

On 9/19/2016 at 5:00 PM, sartoric said:

Crab with lime chilli garlic dipping sauce, a salad, and crusty bread.

 

image.jpegimage.jpeg

Lord have mercy, but that looks wonderful. Wish I'd been on your guest list.

 

21 hours ago, Thanks for the Crepes said:

I made spaghetti and sliced kielbasa cooked in the same pasta  pot. In a 10"/25 cm skillet, I sauteed a huge crushed clove of garlic slowly in 3T butter meanwhile. I had also peeled and chopped the stem from a broccoli crown and cut the florets into small pieces. The stems were added right to the pasta boiling pot in the last five minutes of cooking, and the florets went in a minute later. I added pasta cooking water, a little crushed red pepper, and a little Knorr Caldo de Pollo chicken bouillon powder to the garlic butter. I added a bunch more crushed pepper to my portion and some grated Parm to the plated dishes, including the portion I reserved for my husband's lunch tomorrow. This was served only with a side of North Carolina muscadine grapes that were halved and seeded before plating. He did mention the tough skins, but I love that about these grapes. Such flavor, that can't be approached with a more mainstream variety!

 

This time, be both ate everything on our plates. I plated most of the sausage on my husband's dinner and lunch plates, because he likes it a lot better than I do. I like the broccoli/garlic butter spaghetti without it, but did not dare serve a meatless dinner tonight after last night's FUBAR meal.

 

He brought home his empty containers today, and either he ate them or he dumped them. I don't wish to know. I could not have done a repeat, but you have to do certain things in order to tolerate each other for 17 years, I have found. Anyway, I'm sure he'll be genuinely happy with his lunch tomorrow.

 

Hopefully, the evil kitchen spirits that plagued me yesterday have moved on.

 

Isn't it great when the evil kitchen spirits depart? Lord knows, they've been at my house before...

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Don't ask. Eat it.

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22 minutes ago, kayb said:

Been jonesing for some meat loaf, too. But per @rotuts, no bell pepper for me!

 

No bell pepper in my meatloaf! The green bits you see are celery. Celery and onion are sauteed until soft, but not brown, allowed to cool, then added to the other ingredients.

Edited by robirdstx (log)
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