Tonight my "boys" are on their own - there are a couple leftover burgers and a package of brats they can grill out, but I'm headed to a get-together with some friends and Swimmer Girl is in Joplin MO, volunteering a week to help clean up storm debris.
I am trying some new dishes this week, including a new bean salad recipe, a BLT pasta salad, and a version of Chicken Divan that has the broccoli stuffed in a rolled chicken breast. We'll see how that goes...
So what's everybody else fixing for dinner tonight?.
I like the idea of the artichoke hearts with the avocado and shrimp. I'm always looking for good summer salads!
I just picked a few beans and a bunch of cucumbers, the latter of which I am going to slice, marinate and freeze for winter salads. Most of these are from a volunteer cucumber plant which started fruiting a lot earlier than the ones I sowed this year!
Recipe? I opened the cupboard doors and used whatever fell out... Started with the shrimp which were already cleaned, cooked and de-tailed, chopped those up, tossed in a couple of scallions, a handful of celery, diced up a seeded tomato left over from the day before, cooked up some radiatore, drained a can of artichoke hearts. Cut most of the leafy part off the artichokes as they are sometimes too chewy, sliced up the avocado and drenched it with lemon juice and used them for garnish on top. I didn't want Mayo for dressing so I used a mix of vinaigrette and vidalia onion dressing. I thought it could have used a little more crunch.
I have trouble making small quantities of any kind of main course salad. By the time I get everything I want in it, there's too much for one meal. And sometimes two.
Quoting:I have trouble making small quantities of any kind of main course salad. By the time I get everything I want in it, there's too much for one meal. And sometimes two.
Ho Boy can I relate to that statement. Sometimes you'd think an army was coming to dinner. Fortunately the DH is fine with the same main dish several days in a row. And I have a small freezer
Darius, I looked up the site for Uncle Roy's Flowers of Scotland...there's lots of interesting stuff there, like Smoked Garlic Granules and Smokey Scotch Wiskey Salt. What about Moffat Magic Mushroom and Mustard Sauce??
Last night was the chicken won ton soup and it was very good. LOTS of won tons left over, I froze 'em. They look like little ravioli's.
Before DH retired, I didn't have this problem. He took it to work and nuked it for his lunch, while his coworkers stood around drooling. Now, we seldom eat lunch, just late breakfast and then an evening meal.
I have figured out how to do potato salad. l put out everything I need, and then I put half of it back. Ha. Then I have enough for two meals. Main courses like chops or marinara or ribs I don't mind having leftovers, they go in the freezer for a lazy day. If we have steak left it becomes ragout or soup or... They had a nice buy on sliced mushrooms yesterday at the market, so I carmelized a couple of Vidalias, and threw them in with some garlic and Worchestershire and pepper and those are now residing in the freezer. We have two uprights. I have sworn not to buy any more meat until I use up what we have in them.
Leftover steak is destined to become a steak sandwich here. In fact, my family will line up with plates in hand and beg and grovel if they hear there's a chance for steak sandwiches to be on the menu. (Nothing special - I cut them into strips, saute them with a little butter and worcestershire until they're just heated through, and then griddle some French bread slices to pile the meat on. But they really REALLY like 'em :-)
Okay you enablers - tomorrow I'll be nearby the Penzey's spice market so plan to stop there for the Aleppo pepper and Raspberry whatever it's called...and probably a few other things too. The address for Penzey's is exactly the same as Whole Foods so I'm guessing it's not a Penzy's store so much as Whole Foods carries their brand. Does this make sense?
Making an oriental salad. Got to get the napa still and the honey roasted peanuts. Got the dried cherries and the Chilean raisins ( dark/ sweet like molasses) and it is already almost three pm wow day off and cleaning most of day. I am getting slow or the clock is on speed.
I"m going to cheat with the mandarin oranges and use canned...I know..I know... I love this crunchy salad and even better left over.
The other day I wanted to make a mac-n-cheesy dish with shrimp and broccoli, so I did a béchamel sauce, added cheese, and then mixed it with the pasta to see if that would give the result I wanted. It didn't really; it was okay but not terrific. Today my 14-year-old granddaughter is over. She has some sort of bug, so she hasn't been eating, but she told me that she really had a yen for some mac-n-cheese. This time I got out Joy of Cooking, since I have actually never made macaroni and cheese, and followed a recipe with what I had on hand, which was provolone and grated romano cheese. She was thrilled with the results, and now, since I'm warming up the shrimp dish for our supper, I took a leaf from the mac-n-cheese recipe and beat up an egg with some milk, poured it over the shrimp dish, and added some grated cheese and breadcrumbs on the top. You learn something new every day!
I put together a variation on eggplant parmesan. sliced the eggplant,
sprayed on a little olive oil and then grilled the slices along with some
onion slices. I pulled out one of the last roasted tomato sauce pints from
the freezer and layered the veggies, fresh tomato slices & some fresh
mozzarella. Cooked it for a bit and it was delicious!
tonight we splurged with beef tenderloin, baked potatoes, roasted carrots and green beans. Ended with brownies and ice cream. My sister was over and she is very ill so it was good to cheer her up with some fun food. Actually DH made my sister a brownie/chocolate chip/fresh cherries/almond combo with ice cream.
Doss, that sounds good. How did you cook your tenderloin? I do a lot of pork loins and tenderloins but I've always shied away from beef because I can't seem to get it tender. (I know, the irony of a tough tenderloin :-) Any tips or pointers?
You could try Beef Wellington, the pastry dough keeps the beef moist and prevents overcooking. It isn't as hard as it sounds. I've had a stringy beef tenderloin on occasion and I don't know that there's much you can do with one that looks tough except maybe to brine it and then pound the living #$% out of it and flash fry it. Tenderizer doesn't do much except make the beef mushy. Maybe a marinade would help.
I just put salt and pepper on mine and cook it at 350 for 25-30 minutes until the internal temp is 130-135. More than that and it won't be any good. I have a recipe for a wonderful rub but it comes out just fine plain. Some people sear it before putting in the oven and that does give it a nicer edge. Here's the recipe for the rub.
Black pepper spice rubbed beef tenderloin.
1 and 1/2 tsp black peppercorns
1 and 1/2 tsp coriander seeds
1 and 1/2 tsp cumin seeds
1 and 1/2 tsp mustard seeds (preferably brown)
1/2 tsp whole cloves
1/2 tsp fennel seeds
4 green cardamom pods, crushed, reserving seeds and discarding pods
1 (1 and 1/2 inch) cinnamon stick, broken into small pieces
1 and 1/2 tsp coarse sea salt or kosher salt
1 2pound trimmed and tied center-cut beef tenderloin roast at room temperature for 30 minutes
1 and 1/4 Tbsp vegetable oil
Toast spices and salt in a dry 10 inch skillet over meduim low heat until mustard seeds begin to pop, 3-5 minutes. Cool completely then grind in grinder
Preheat oven to 350% rack in middle
Pat beef dry then rub spice mixture all over including ends. Heat oil in same skillet over high heat until it shimmers. Brown beef on all sides, about 10 minutes total.
Transfer beef to a small roasting pan and roast until meat registers 120 degrees for meduim-rare, 20-30 minutes. (internal temp will rise to 130).
Cut off string and slice beef. Serve warm or at room temp.
Note, beef can be rubbed with spices 1 day ahead and refrigerated. Let stand at room temp for 30 minutes before browning.
I buy my tenderloin at Costco. The raw meat freezes well which is a good thing since you have to buy two.
That rub looks good
I bet your sis felt cherished indeed
I roast at higher heat.
Like this recipe from fine dining.
If you check the fine dining recipes for beef tenderloin you will find a few good there
Hard to find tenderloin nowadays that has good marbling which helps with the tenderness. I have mostly gone to standing rib when I get a hankering for beef and mashed pot with a wine sauce. Also let it stand to reabsorb the juices.
1 2-1/2- to 3-lb. beef tenderloin roast (preferably the head piece), trimmed of silverskin, at room temperature
1 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 Tbs. cold unsalted butter
3 large shallots, halved and thinly sliced lengthwise (about 1 cup)
3/4 cup dry red wine, preferably a fruity California Cabernet Sauvignon
1 sprig fresh rosemary, plus 1/2 tsp. chopped
3/4 cup homemade or low-salt beef broth
Tip: Tip: It’s important to let the beef rest before slicing it; this allows the juices to redistribute from the outside of the roast throughout the whole roast, making this lean cut very juicy.
Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 450°F. Brush or rub the beef with the oil and put the beef in a 9x13-inch roasting pan lined with aluminum foil. Season the beef generously with salt and pepper.
Roast the beef until an instant-read thermometer registers 120°F to 125°F for rare, about 25 min.; 125°F to 130°F for medium rare, about 30 min. (The temperature of the beef will rise 5°F as it rests.) Wrap the beef in the foil that lines the pan and let rest on a carving board for 10 to 15 min.
While the beef roasts, make the sauce. Melt 2 Tbs. of the butter in a 12-inch skillet over medium heat. Add the shallots and cook, stirring often, until they soften and turn golden brown, 8 to 10 min. Add the wine and the rosemary sprig and bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Boil until the volume of wine and shallots reduces to 1/2 cup, about 3 min. Add the broth and continue to boil until the sauce is reduced to 1 cup, about 5 min. Reduce the heat to low. Remove the rosemary sprig and stir in the chopped rosemary. Cut the remaining 2 Tbs. cold butter into small cubes and add a few of them at a time to the sauce, stirring to melt each addition.
Unwrap the tenderloin and stir any accumulated juices into the sauce. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper. Slice the meat and serve with the sauce.
If you get the Costco it will make several roasts and an end tucked to make four small out of the two.
Just a good ole grilled rib-eye steak, and a bottle of catsup.. Maybe a salad & potato.. Usually when steak hungry, all I want is the meat.. Medium rare.. Can't wait.. And it's even gonna get cooked for me by my BIL.. Great..
I have been making my own kefir so have a smoothie for lunch most days. I freeze banana, mango and berries so it's thick like a milkshake when all quizzed together. Ground flax seed adds omega 3 and fiber.
Three Costco double cut pork chops left the freezer this morning. I sliced them in half while they were still frozen and will pound them out later for breaded pork cutlets. I use non-fat yogurt or buttermilk instead of egg to wet the meat for breading. We have fresh mozz and basil, a salad and yard long beans as sides. I've got a canner full of garden tomatoes going as I tap this.
For years I fixed breaded pork cutlets and told hubby it was veal. He thought I was a budgeting fool to be able to afford veal on our income. As the years went by and he saw me breading pork...he said "You are a whiz Honey Bunny...your pork tastes just like veal!
Wish I had known about that in my younger days, Missing. I blew our wedding gift money shopping at the prime meat market because that was the meat I grew up with. I was ignorant to southern food then. I went to the regular grocery store and could not identify the meat let alone the cuts. We were both students, part time employed, living in a basement duplex next to a federal housing project. The chain grocery store had five gallon buckets of chitlins in the meat section and five gallon buckets of lard in the baking section. I didn't know a collard green from a mustard green. Guess you could say I was a real turnip seed! I've improved.
I got the tomatoes canned. Thankfully we nibbled enough figs to prevent me from having to make jam today too. There's a lot more on the trees though. I''ll roast the cherries.
Those figs look great -- do you get itchy picking?
Yes, the budget ( of 17 bucks for a weeks food ) went fast. Later we had a child with medical problems and his heart medication had to be compounded to the right dosage for toddlers and served up in thse little waxed packets - it cost 50 dollars! A huge sum! Evenings, my hubby mopped the black and white octagon shaped tile staircases so common in Brooklyn apt buildings just to pay for those meds. He hates those tiny black and white tiles... I think the tile hid a multitude of sins!
lt's magic...when you are poor the evil genies know just when you've squirreled away enough money for something your heart desires, and then they put the kibosh on an appliance or create some kind of havoc guaranteed to wipe out your nest egg.
Doss, I realized how that sounded after I posted. Meant to say cherry tomatoes.
Evil genies have been on our doorsteps for months. Termite tenting, Atlanta ice maker croaking and then the Maypop dishwasher. We just got our Atlanta ice situation under control and then the ice maker at Maypop died last week. At least I have a new dishwasher. lol I need to go live in a tent.
This morning we did our monthly food pick up at Costco for shelter distribution. That Cosco gets picked up twice a week. Four hundred and fifty six pounds of baked goods! Took close to an hour to load in ninety four degree heat, standing on the concrete paved delivery area. The van was loaded to the ceiling with trash bags full. We went in to do a little personal shopping afterward. The we brought the food to its destination and drove to the nearby international market to pick up some shrimp. We're having cold shrimp and remoulade, a saga blue brie and a potato scallion bread. The last two items came from Costco and are new foods for us. We'll also have marinated artichokes, kalamata olives, pickled garden veggies and cherry tomatoes.
Veined cheeses are among my favorites. Veined Stilton is as good as it gets. I was disappointed about a beautiful Stilton in the Costco case that was chock full of dried apricots. I dislike any other foods or herbs added to cheese. Mold is good though. lol I was looking for an easy dinner because of running around in the heat and time spent setting up a ferment for kosher dills a la Wolfie's (Rascal House). I'll have to cover them and cart them up to Maypop to keep checking for doneness.
I've had about a hundred lovely Stiltons in the UK. Never a bad one. Shropshire Blue, a relative of Stilton, is one of my top ever favorites. It seems when we go to Europe we eat huge amounts of cheese. We normally road trip and carry cheese, fresh produce and bread with us everywhere. Okay, off to prepare dinner (take the cheese out of the fridge). :>)
Laurel, how do you do your kosher dills? And do you then process them in a hot water baths? I have a bunch of cucumbers from the garden, and I just cut up a huge bowl full with my mandoline, salted them, let them sit for a day, and then put them in a 50/50 sugar/cider vinegar bath for another day and then I will freeze them in small packages for winter salads. They actually come out crunchy when treated like that. But I want to do some pickling with some other ones. A couple of years ago I tried pickling in an old crock we brought back from Washington State, but although they were good they weren't very firm. Later I learned that I should have cut off the blossom ends. Maybe there are other tricks I should have tried as well.
We had wild-caught salmon and new potatoes and beans and peppers from the garden, with cantaloupe for dessert. Nothing fancy. It's very hot here but at least we have a/c.
That's what my DS and I did when I visited her over there, decades ago. They were stationed in the midlands, so we hopped in her car and made the rounds to all the local cheese and bread shops. There was a bread strike going on at the time, so we needed to find small bakeries in the nearby villages, and there was usually a butcher and a cheesemaker near. I don't know why people complain about British food, we ate like royalty, Double cream, yum, We did a lot of walking too which is probably what kept us from turning into blimps.
GH, these are fermented pickles. No vinegar involved.
2 quarts water
3 Tbs kosher salt with no additives or use pickling salt
1 bay leaf per pint or quart
8 peppercorns (approx.) per quart
1/4 tsp. mustard seed per quart (approx.)
2 whole cloves garlic per quart or one per pint
1/2 cup fresh dill cut in four inch pieces (approx). Trim stem tips and use stems and fronds.
Heat one quart water and salt to boil. When salt is dissolved add cool water. Trim pickling cukes (kirby) and leave whole or slice in spears or make fat, 3/4" to 1" slices. Pack clean jars from dishwasher or hot, well scrubbed ones. If using slices, layer with garlic cloves, peppercorns, and mustard seed. You can slice the garlic but whole is fine. Place a bay leaf midway in each jar. Pour liquid over pickles and store pickles in a cool spot with cheese cloth and rubberband covers or drape all the jars with a clean dish towel. Do not cap jars as these are undergoing fermentation. Taste a pickle after forty eight hours. If you make slices they may be ready. It can take up to a week for whole pickles and a few days for spears. The longer you wait the more sour they will become. When they get to your preferred flavor, cap and refrigerate. These cannot be pantry stored and are not processed. They are like the fresh kosher dills from the fridge section of the store. They last for many months in the fridge.Tweak the dill and garlic to your taste. Some folks use pickling spice but I don't care for it in kosher dills.
Oh it's cherry Tomatoes! That makes a lot more sense.
Tonight we ate from the freezer. I had some pecan crusted chicken with roasted spiced red potatoes. We added roasted carrots and green beans that were in the fridge. It was almost 100 here today so it was wonderful to leave cooking to the past and enjoy the results in the present.
Laurel, so these aren't preserved but just refrigerated? Sounds very easy! But how many cucumbers do you need for that recipe? I know that's hard to state because they grow to such varied sizes; how many quart jars would you expect to get from one batch?
We do have a space problem in our refrigerator, though...
I make lacto-fermented pickles too... using almost everything from cukes to carrots and grape leaves to keep them crunchy. I have two Harsch crocks but usually use wide mouth mason jars because there's just me (and my neighbor Buster) to eat them. I make sauerkraut and cukes in half-gallon jars and quart jars for beets, carrots and other smaller veggies. Having several varieties really IS like going to Wolfies, Laurel!
After they finish fermenting, I cap them and store them on the concrete floor at the back of my root cellar where it's cool/dark all year. My fav from last year was some garlicky cauliflower. The BIG advantage of ferments is the added nutrition from the enzyme activity.
I could stick mine down in the basement, but it's not completely underground so it may not be as cool as your root cellar. So that might not be safe. I will check your link; thanks! This year's crop of pickling cucumbers is beginning to produce so I need to do something soon!
GH, they are preserved, just not processed. Canning makes them last indefinitely but I've kept ferments for a year. You know they are no good if the liquid gets cloudy. Storing in a cool basement or root cellar is one way to do it. They won't store for as long as in the fridge and they will continue to sour. Check the jars regularly for continued fermentation so you don't have pickle bombs. I am going to check my canning books to see if I can overlay my ferment recipe to their canning instructions. I hesitate because usually processed pickle recipes contain vinegar and sugar, even what is called "kosher dills".
The recipe above should give you enough for four quarts/eight pints of brining liquid. You can mix up a batch of the brine (I make double batch and keep it handy) and make enough pickles to fit your storage space as an ongoing project. Aside from the veggies Darius mentioned, green tomatoes are really excellent. It's an especially good way to deal with those zillion and one cherries. I have two humongous fridges in Atlanta but only a wee one at Maypop (with a dead ice maker). I do fermenting in the city where I have a busier schedule than in the country and can the bulk of the produce up there.
Okay, I'll give it a whirl. Can I use French sea salt instead of kosher salt? And I have to check the state of my dill, too. I think if I cleaned out the refrigerator I'd have room to store some pickles; some stuff has been tucked in the back regions forever!
We have a refrigerator in the basement that I have running right now for the salad cucumber slices I have soaking in vinegar and sugar for freezing. But it's an old unit and not very energy-efficient, so we only use it for special jobs. Like if DH gets clams and we can't eat them right away, or I'm aging freshly-butchered chickens or deer.
Laurel, I use whey to jump-start the fermenting processing and cut down on the salt... If I'm not making cheese and have whey, I just drain some yogurt. A quart jar of pickles only needs ~4 Tbs. whey and 1 Tbs. non-iodized salt.
Leslie, the only concern I have about sea salt is the mineral/clay content. I love the taste of Sel Gris from Guerande, but the mineral substrate can harbor bacteria. I use pickling salt in my ferments and cheese, it's cheaper than Kosher table salt and essentially just plain, clean non-iodized salt.
Two seconds after I got off here DD called to say she's been invited to do a canning workshop, August 2nd, at an organic farm in Maryland. A local TV station is coming to tape the workshop. Last year she did a goat butchering and hide tanning workshop at another farm school. She keeps an urban farm, home remodeling, food, beekeeping and whatever else blog but has not been posting much in recent months because her job is time intensive. I'd be happy to send anyone interested the link via DM.
Today is a travel day. I am defrosting a roasted chicken and will see what the garden has to give up when we get there.
Thanks for the lacto-ferment info Darius.
GH, Darius is correct about the salt. Plus which, minerals and additives like anti-caking agents, can make your pickles come out weird colors.
Interesting...I use sea salt in mine, because I buy it in 50 lb. bags, and haven't had trouble. I have never used whey, but I sure am curious to try it now. The first time I made these, I was pretty sure it would end up being a science experiment...I cultured the liquid before I would taste them, what a ginormous geek.
I've got some that I bought in France, but I have no way of knowing how pure it is. I just got some kosher salt at an Amish market this afternoon; I am hoping that they didn't just pour all their salt in different bags with different labels because it looks the same as their other packages!
That just sounds too funny...kosher salt from an Amish market. Kosher salt should look course compared to regular table salt. It's called "kosher salt" because it's used for koshering meat. There is otherwise nothing special about it. It used to have no additives but now some brands have anti-caking agents. The granules are large to draw off blood from meats without melting and washing away 'cause the meat must remain salted for at least one hour. My Bubby and mom used to have special boards to lean at an angle into a drain pan. The meat was salted and then left for that hour. Animals were slaughtered and the meat was butchered according to dietary laws but that last step was not done by the butcher but rather the homemaker. Today the meat comes ready to cook. That and plucking and singeing chickens have gone the way of the Kelvinator. I'd not waste your lovely French sea salt on making pickles, GH.
I just like the flaky texture of kosher salt with some foods. Since I'm a vegetarian, it's kinda funny, my old aunties laugh at me, but I roll with it. My sea salt is mixed with 10% dendritic sea salt (by me) to prevent caking and it has some other mineral salts, but they've never caused pickle water to cloud. I've always wanted to play with dendritic salt and food, it is chemically structured to be absorbent, it seems like that HAS to have some kind of food use, smoked or flavored salt, something...
Given that I buy salt 200 lbs. at a time, I'd hate to have to buy another kind. It's larger crystals than table salt, more the size of sanding sugar, but not flaky like kosher salt.
I made a three cheese mac 'n cheese to go with the cold roasted chicken last night. Jarlesberg Swiss, pecorino and cheddar were on hand. Remember the cherries (:>) Doss) I roasted with garlic and oil? I topped the mac with those and their juicy goodness. That made it over the moon. Twice roasted tomatoes.
This morning I was in the garden at 6 a.m. and back in the house at 8:45. Bet you can guess what I'll be doing today. There's plenty of mac ' cheese left for tonight and schnitzel from the other night.
I doubled up on our dinner last night, and took half to a couple whose wife recently had rotator cuff surgery. Came home and just as we sat down to eat, oldest son popped in, so I had all "my boys" around the table for supper.
Marinated and grilled chicken with a smidge of barbeque sauce to glaze them, corn pudding, marinated sweet-and-sour bean salad, BLT pasta salad and peach cobbler and ice cream for dessert. I should probably run a 10K this morning to work it off. Instead, I'll just go pull some weeds and sweat it off that way :-)
That mac 'n cheese looks delicious. And what a tomato haul! Talk about abundance! Do you use a tomato machine to separate the seeds and skins from the pulp? That's what we do, but we only just started getting our first ripe regular-sized tomatoes.
I was out early and then back in this morning, too. Picked a bunch of cucumbers, some dill, and a few grape leaves. I'm sure you know what I'm going to be doing next! Cukes are chilling in the refrigerator and then I have to heat the water and the salt...
I have an ancient Victorio Strainer for pureeing tomatos, and it works like a charm. But I fasten it to a deck railing and do it outside because no matter how careful you are, tomatos SQUIRT! I'll probably roast some small ones too but I like the puree. Hmm, now I want spaghetti for dinner, no matter what the temperature.
Laurel, it looks like you have your work cut out for you! I won't have enough homegrown 'maters to put up this year, but I'm hoping next week to pick up a box of peaches to dry and a box of tomatoes to roast and puree. And I meant to say that mac-n-cheese looks mighty inviting :-)
The corn pudding is pretty standard - I use a chub of frozen creamed corn, a box of cornbread mix, some eggs and sour cream, and maybe a handful of sharp cheddar. It falls somewhere between cornbread and a veggie and it's always been a favorite of younger son (I knew he wasn't going to bite on the salads.)
I realize I didn't say how many cukes, GH. About twenty pickling ones for four quarts. My kitchen smells like a kosher deli with those pickles bubbling away and only a kitchen towel covering them. I found some recipes for canning fermented pickles in the new edition Ball Book. They would probably be more like the Mt. Olive shelf brand kosher dills than Clausen or Ba Tempte which are cold cased.
I got a food mill attachment as an add on to the meat grinder attachment for the KitchenAid mixer gift I received this past Hanukkah. I blanch and skin tomatoes for canning but leave the seeds. I'll run them through the mill to make tomato sauce 'cause the seeds can make sauce a little bitter.
Laurel, I figured it all depended on the size of the cucumbers. I ended up with three half-gallons of cukes so I had to make up some more brine for the third one. And I put the pickles down in the cellar where it's cooler; is it cool enough in a kitchen with the a/c at 74? I did spears, so I will check in a couple of days to see how they are. And then I need to make room in the refrigerator. I already chucked some very old ricotta and some old applesauce that I found way in the back, so that will help.
We have a Victorio-type strainer for tomatoes that was in DH's family for several generations. When we got it we had to make a new gasket for the site where the disperser attaches to the funnel/grinder, but it works well. I cook the tomatoes down first to make it easier to separate the skin and seeds from the pulp, and to reduce the volume a little, and then I cook the pulp down some more after the tomatoes go through the strainer. I do use the strainer on the porch, though, because it drips a bit. Here's my granddaughter operating it several years ago!
Yours is older than mine, I have a plastic hopper. My DD had the all metal one. He was the one who told me I had to get it when he saw the bumper crop of tomatos I had ...I think it was 76 or 77. They do last forever. I like your made in Italy bowl too. LOL
Yes, the kitchen is def cool enough to ferment the cukes, GH, and I love that mill! Pretty granddaughter too.
Terry, we have a few peaches on our trees. Maybe just enough for some 1/2 pints of jam. SO brought home two more grocery bags full of figs from a rental house we have yesterday. I love fig jam and created a winter tart a year or so ago using my fig jam and fresh apples. There were tons more on the tree but I was thankful he quit at two bags. Between having babies and canning I don't know how us women survived those pioneer days. True grit I reckon. Guess crop failures were mixed blessings like, "We're going to starve come winter but at least I don't have to can over a wood stove in August!"
My Dm cooked on a wood stove until the early fifties. Man, I tell you laundry days and canning made that kitchen into a sauna. And we kids weren't exempt either, more wood, more water, etc. I still make my own jam when the peaches, and raspberries are bountiful and am amazed at how easy it is, with a gas cook top, and "mod cons" as they say in Britain. It was an all day event back in the day.
I remember when I was a small girl the big doings at my great grandmothers house. They'd build a fire outside and had this giant copper pot with a big copper spoon that was used to cook down apples for apple sauce. All the ladies would help with the big project. I don't know if they did other types of preserving the same way but I do remember the applesauce. My great grandmother also cooked with a wood stove in her little kitchen til the day she died at age 99yrs. She made wonderful cherry pies in that oven.
I'm feeling pioneery enough doing three loads of laundry today AND hanging them on the line in this heat. Ran to the seed and feed to pick up some seed. Now to start canning. I could use a longer day and a younger me. Always wanted a wood cook stove. We have a wood heat stove in the basement that we use as much as possible in winter. It has room for one pot on top but I'm not standing down there to cook. I've used it when we've been snowed in and the electric goes.
Darius, that peach with raspberries sounds fantastic! I just planted Heritage raspberries this year. Got a way to go.
Laurel, we heat our house mostly with wood, but our stove is soapstone and the surface never really gets hot enough to cook on. We had all sorts of Little House on the Prairie plans when we switched to wood, when our kids were small, but alas...Our kitchen cooktop is LP gas, so that was always functional even when we lost power. We got gas for that very reason.
I knew folks in rural Vermont in the '60's who cooked and heated the home with a wood cookstove. She told me that once you get the hang of regulating the temperature, it works really well. Especially if you have ready access to good firewood.
We have enjoyed wood heat in many of our casa's over the years. Love it. Once lived on a 23-acre Christmas tree farm! Plenty of stumps.
Tonight I'll bbq some chicken breasts and try some of the Raspberry Enlightenment I picked up at Penzey's the other day. (What a store! Got away only spending about $30.) There's some fresh corn and roasted beets...fresh bread. Desert will be store-bought pumpkin raisin walnut bread splashed with a little Bailey's and some Jameson, topped with yogurt. Enjoyed in the 'cool' tub. (We drain and refill the hottub in summer and soak before bed...get that old core temp down some.)
I had a wood cookstove when I lived on my farm in Boone. My first few baking attempts were 1) a Thanksgiving turkey, and 2) a lemon meringue pie. I ended up taking the turkey to my mother's to finish, and I won't even mention the pie!
My wood heat stove here can hold 2 good sized pots, and I used it a lot last year when we had no power for 10 days. I was sure glad to have my glass Chemex coffee pot, although it doesn't ever get put on the stove. (I have a 30 year old Stanley SS thermos to keep coffee hot.)
We are having a hellacious thunderstorm right now, power has been off several times for just minutes. We've had at least 2" of rain in an hour and it's still coming down... gotta go before I lose this post.
I am planning a vegan dinner for house guests tomorrow. Dessert is the part I am still pondering. I am thinking of trying a chocolate gelato recipe from Eating Well mag... It uses coconut milk and no dairy or eggs. Any other ideas? Poached pears maybe...
DD called me a while back about an easy summer dessert for vegan guests. I suggested granitas. She's now done it a couple of times. So refreshing for this time of year. Google Sweet Huckleberry to see her take. I'd say if you have a nice fruit to poach, poach and chill it or make it into granitas. If they drink alcohol you can poach it in a nice liqueur like orange Curacao, which is cheap and not exotic or dose the fruit after poaching. Watermelon granitas are good this time of year. There are lots of vegan cookies out there with lists available online. You could serve a granita with store bought cookies.
Ooohhh, Tam... Thanks for mentioning poached pears! I have some canned Belgian pears poached in red wine I should use up... saved for a rainy day. ^_^
The rain has mostly abated but I have ducks in my yard, swimming! My next-door neighbor has creek water 150 feet or more up in his yard in the lower spots. Mine is only about 20 feet in from the normal creek bank, about 5 feet shy of my sweet potato bed right now. However, there's more on the way shortly and the creek is swift.
I've got three rows of sweet potatoes in this year! Just hoping no critters get 'em (like voles).
I decided I wanted an ice cream maker so am using the occasion to make the chocolate gelato. But now that I've looked at granita's maybe I'll make a batch of those too. My girlfriend doesn't drink and they are bringing their son so no alcohol but they look very refreshing.
You can make a non-alcoholic watermelon granita with a little lime juice, a little sugar and a lot of melon, blended up and frozen.
I have a lot of buttermilk leftover from red velvet cakes last week. I might just have to whip up some peach sorbet to use some of it before it goes south. No dinner tonight - my husband "treated" (ahem) me to a date night at the race track. Truck series racing. He has had season tickets forever, and I have never been to a race. Guess I had no more excuses to offer up tonight, so off we went. Yay me :-)
Yep Terry - I was thinking either watermelon or perhaps peach granita. I have the chocolate gelato cooling on the counter. I'll be running down the road to a wonderful little store selling local produce & plants to see what looks good.
All those icees sound grand, I'll have to check into them more. Never heard of 'em.
Tonight I will try that tomato pie you all raved about. But I will try a polenta crust for it instead of the pre-made store bought thingy. Should be great as the polenta will better handle a bit of runny-ness,
When my DD went into the army in '42 (close enough) he was finally stationed near Arlington, VA. For a short time, while looking for housing near the base, we lived in Baltimore. There were street vendors selling paper cones of chipped ice with flavoring drizzled on them. I was crazy for them! They were soooo good, and it was soooo hot there. I came from the south shore of Lake Superior in northern Wisconsin, and never had experienced heat like that. One of those icey cones was a real treat.
Well they had a nice peck of peach seconds that looked very nice. Enough perfectly ripe ones for the granita so that's what I've made. I made a syrup of lemon & lime w/sugar and blended that with a couple pounds of peach. Its been in the freezer for about an hour and is just starting to freeze around the edges.
I'm making brushetta as an appetizer and have a quinoa & black bean dish for a side (its got fresh corn & tomato in it and is a bit south western tasting). The main dish is going to be a red curry w/tofu and green beans. I'm using a lot of stuff from my garden - even the shallots and onions are from my garden. The red pepper is not quite ripe - another week and they'll be ripe. (Laurel - thanks for all the suggestions! I'll use them another time.)
Mary, I also have a recipe for a cornbread pizza crust that might work for this pie. You parbake it then finish it with refried beans, seasoned beef, cheese, chilies, etc. Holler if you want the recipe.
1 1/4 cup flour
3/4 cup cornmeal
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup milk
1/4 cup olive oil
Preheat oven to 400. Stir crust ingredients together. Place on pizza stone or greased pizza pan. Let rest 3 to 4 minutes, then use a rolling pin to make a 12 to 15-inch circle (or square it off if you're going to cut it in squares). Bake for 12 minutes. Remove from oven. (From here, continue with the tomato pie recipe.)
I've only used it as a flat crust, but I'm pretty sure you could push it up the edges of a tart or pie pan.
Tomatos stuffed with shrimp and artichoke hearts, on our leaf lettuce picked this morning, and pasta aglio e olio with a little squeeze of anchovy paste that DH never knows is in there...because he HATES anchovies. What he doesn't know... makes my dilnner more delicious...
Wanna, some wild edibles are little more than survival food, but daylilies actually taste good. Most people think the daylily came originally from China because it is a traditional ingredient in many Chinese dishes. My god-father loves all the different versions of Hot & Sour soup so daylilies tend to find their way into the soup pot around here. Aside from Asian food, I’ve never done anything more sophisticated than sauté the buds or roots as a side dish. I have a strictly vegan friend who is a huge fan of the roots. You can eat them most of the same ways you eat potatoes, just keep in mind they are sweeter. I only use the “wild” orange fulva kind (tawny daylily, tiger lily), but I’ve heard Stella de Oro is also edible. You can stuff the blooms in the same ways you would squash blossoms. I even have a recipe for daylily cheesecake. lol.
Thanks, Missingrosie. I haven’t had a blood test yet, but I feel more energetic taking the B-complex you suggested.
Tammy, what I call “dry frying” is frying with the absolute minimum amount of oil you can get away with.
We’ve been eating lots of cucumber sandwiches lately. Cukes seem to thrive on the over-abundance of water we’ve had recently. The okra is also producing so I think shrimp gumbo and cornbread will use what we have, but make a nice change. I'm reading a book set in the Louisiana swamps so it goes well with my book. lol.
Thanks for the ideas on what to do with all the cucumbers. ~Nadine~
Rummaging in the chest freezer for pork shoulders to make sausage, I discovered a petit filet which I shall have for supper... with sliced tomato/fresh basil and an oven-baked potato since the AC has cooled the house. I picked up 3 heirloom tomatoes at the market this morning since mine are still a couple of weeks away... and some local peaches. Mountain peaches are never as good as the South Carolina peaches, but they do smell lovely. Now I wish I had some vanilla ice cream...
Since it is still hovering near 106 (actual, not index) supper is chilled cucumber soup w/ dilled sour cream, country style ribs, pasta salad. Of course it is county fair week here, always the hottest week of the year.
Had warm peach cake the other day and it was served with a lemon ginger ice cream but I opted out for vanilla bean..anyway the chef wanted to spice it up a tad I think and he sent three slices of one of those mountain peaches out on the plate...and when I bit into it there was a thin thin layer if hardened sugar on it ..like what you might find on the top of creme brulee but much much thinner. So I guess that is what needs to be done to jazz up those mountain peaches.
The canner is full of lemon mint fig jam. Hoisin sauce beef ribs are in the oven. I made baked potatoes for another meal just to make use of the oven while it was on and blind baked a pie crust for another tomato pie while at it. I've got yard long beans and more leftover food than I know what to so with. After canning four quarts and one pint of tomatoes plus one quart and one pint of tomato juice last night I still have three huge baskets of tomatoes.
my vegan meal was a big success. My guests really liked the quinoa w/black beans & corn but thought the dessert was the highlight of the meal. Everyone had both peach granitas & chocolate granitas. I love feeding people who so enjoy their meal!
The tomato pie, on cornbread crust, was a hit. DH says, "Is this that crust you make for polenta pizza?" No, says I, it's a different one. Not as dry. Thanks Terry, it was very good, lots of pie left over.
I stir fried 'shrooms, onions, garlic, hot peppers and zucchini for the filling. I forgot to mix in the mayo with the cheese before topping off the pie with mozzerella and Dubliner aged white cheddar, [sans mayo]. This pic is before the cheese topping.
I can't get the scanned recipe to convert to something I can post here. meezers and Terry, if you d-mail me an email address I can send the recipe that way...and anyone else who may be interested. It's from a Moosewood cookbook...Molly Katzen.
Tammy, sounds like you had a lot of fun. Aren't those granitas wonderful?
Mary, I'd like to have some of that pie for bkfst. please.
I'm up early to garden and make meat and tomato sauce for canning. Still trying to put a dent in these tomatoes and now there's another basket of cucumbers sitting on the counter. The good news is I am able to stream movies. I watched Stieg Larsson's "The Girl Who Played With Fire". It was easy to keep up with the subtitles while stirring jam for two hours. lol
Darius, I've got a tiny Celeste fig tree here at Maypop but the Brown Turkey fig at the rental house is huge. We have a second Brown Turkey fig at our home. It sits on the edge of the woods and the animals get most of the fruit. I've seen a fox come and feed off the low hanging branches.Okay, off to work. I'll check in later.
Laurel, come on by, I'll slice you up a big piece!
Here it is Terry, I re-scanned it as a jpg. Your cornmeal crust was actually better, not as dry. The author fooled me calling it a polenta crust. Many times I made it using polenta meal, which is much coarser than cornmeal and it was even more dry so I had to put a note to self not to use the grits (polenta grits). Anyhow, I may add some parmesean cheese to your crust next time, see what effect that has but all-in-all, we liked yours better.
Tammy, Sounds like dinner was a hit. Desert sounds wonderfull also. As always, your house is the place to be for a good time. BTW - We just got our first sungold tomatoes off of the plants and they were a big hit. I mixed them with some of the red cherries that we have for a tomato, basil and lime salad tonight. Very good.
Terry, I'm interested in the corn bread pie crust. I can't have yeast so have been looking for a substitute for regular pizza dough. Does the corn breaf crust turn out to be soft or firm when you make it?
Dinner was a rotissirie chicken (on the grill) stuffed with a lemon, garlic, and rosemary; baked sweet potato; a tomato basil salad with lime juice; and fresh basil/almond pesto on crackers.
Mary, I'd love to come by but I'm picking ten pounds of tomatoes a day that need attention. Then there's the okra, beans, cukes and peppers will be ready very soon. We harvested the first Greek pepperoncini tonight. I made six quarts of tomato sauce with onions, peppers and herbs. It also had sweet sausage and beef. The food mill on the KithcenAid worked great. It is a little messy.
I'm a little confused about this polenta discussion. Grits are not the same as polenta. They are from two different types of corn. Dent corn for grits and flint corn for polenta.
Laurel, yes, I know grits are not polenta, that was just my wordsmithing to remind myself not to use the coarse ground polenta for this crust recipe. It's too tough. I knew what it meant as a note in my cookbook, was just trying to 'splain it to Terry and the group, since it came through in the scanned copy.
SusanKC, it's firm but not tough and not soggy at all. That course ground polenta crust I was making (in error) needed a sauce to soften it. It may be the milk (half and half was all I had on hand) that made the difference because the two recipes are very close in ingredients.
Thanks Mary, I've printed off a copy of the recipe. What kind of corn meal are you using for the crust?
Maypoplaurel, No flatbreads yet. Do you have a recipe for one that you like? I was making a lot of quick breads and biscuits but got tired of it. Lately we've been using whole grain tortias from the store.
Tomorrow I will pick up a loaf of italian bread and we will have sandwiches - peppers and eggs topped with a few slices of tomato. Mondays are hard at work and it will be a quick and easy meal. I love bread. Good bread hard to find here in the shops. No bakeries -- at least not like the kind we had in the northeast.
SusanKC, you might be interested in a book by Jeffrey Alford and Naomi Duguid, "Flatbreads and Flavors". It's an around the world look at all kinds off flat breads, from injera to naan to tortillas. That's my go to reference. If you want just a recipe for basic pita I can send one. Alford and Duguid have several books out, all excellent. I also have "Mangoes and Curry Leaves". Julia Child hosted one or both of them on several occasions for flatbread demonstrations.
Celene, I prefer chapati...thinner than naan. You know how when I go to Miami I'm always posting about running to the roti shops?
SO made a Beautiful salad with grilled Japanese garden eggplant, onions, peppers and topped with feta and roasted chicken left from the other night. Cukes, tomatoes and arugula also from the garden. Another tomato pie is about to hit the oven and I'll multi task the oven by roasting several pounds of cherry tomatoes for another night.
Oh, goodness. Try turkey shawarma and fixin's the next time there are cutlets hanging around. Bon Appetite and Epicurious have recipes on line. It's important to add the tahini sauce and tomato relish. Pickles and peppers are great too.
Buttermilk is magic. So under appreciated for what it can do for baked and fried foods.
yes meezers, it's great. You can season the corn flake crumbs too, garlic powder and cayenne at minimum. :-)
Laurel, that does not sound simple and fast...but most definately delicious. I'll look at the recipes and plan one. I had all the ingredients for the piccata on hand. tahini sauce and tom relish...errrr, not so much. Thanks for the tip.
We did the bad thing and had corn tortilla tacos wrapped around chicken and green chiles then fried, with all the usual taco toppings and refried beans. I think whatever I ran off this morning came right back on in the first bit or two :-)
Laurel I checked the cookbook shelf and have a copy. Gift from someone a couple of years back. Any suggestions as to what you like in it?
Went to a cooking class tonight at whole foods on locally grown tomato. They had the growers there also. Was very fun. They cooked basil stuffed tomatoes, minestroni, grilled tomato/mazarella/bread kabob, and a corn/black bean/avacado/tomato salad. Gave me some new ideas for what to do with all those summer tomatoes.
I defrosted chicken breasts in buttermilk and chipotle hot sauce all night, this morning I'll bake them with cajun seasoning and panko for oven-fried chicken, with some cauliflower, broccoli and cheese, and a baked sweet potato with strained yogurt. Dessert: watermelon. I will probably just eat watermelon, I can embarrass myself with how much I can eat.
Dunno Laurel, it would have been near Springfield which is where my brother lives now. It's been several years ago but I still remember the crunch, the squirt of juice into my mouth and the awesome flavor.
Mangoes and avo's are good too but must be peeled first. Pick, rub the apple on your jeans and bite away!
I'm with Laurel... A ripe mango, straight from the tree! Someone has to pick it and peel it for me as I'm allergic to the sap in the tree, and in the skin. Store mangoes from storage don't affect me since the sap has long ago dried out.
I haven't had a really good, tasty mango since the last time I was in Miami in mango season, which has been many years.
I have had bananas cut fresh from the trees in Miami and the islands that bring tears to my eyes. Red bananas and lady fingers. Oh my. Now all that said my number one favorite is a ripe, juicy tomato from one of forty five plants in my own garden!
Unfortunately I've got a squirrel beating me to the punch. Note the already consumed pit sitting next to the snack in progress. SO called me over to the window the other night day to watch this fellow running back and forth to the tree. No peach jam here this year. Hope he gets the runs. :>)
I remember setting a clamshell type box of strawberries outside for a couple hours. Imagine my surprise as I watched a Douglas squirrel digging a strawberry out of a nearby planter box!!!!!!!! He scampered up a tree trunk and enjoyed his snack. I then realized he had been snagging berries from the clamshell (by pushing against the lid, reaching in, and hauling the strawberries one at a time to his cache in the newly planted boxes!!!!!!!!!!
Meatloaf, potatoes au gratin and a hastily thrown together cuke and tomato salad with a creamy dill dressing. It was too tangy and should have had a few hours to chill and mellow out. But the meatloaf was decent, and my crew made a pretty good dent in everything.
I had some of those local peaches for dessert last night. Pretty tasty (the Brix was 13). I sliced them, added a scoop of strained yogurt, sprinkled with lime basil and drizzled with a tad of local honey.
Susan, the left one is a German Johnson and the right is a Pink Oxheart. I am growing about twenty five or thirty types this year with some repeats, all but four are heirloom and/or open pollinated. We also have three types of eggplant, eight or ten kinds of peppers, four finds of heirloom green beans, three kinds of cucumbers, okra, collards, southern peas, carrots, beets, kohlrabi, kale, chard, arugula, cabbage (two green and one red type), asparagus, two kinds of winter squash (delicata and butternut), and tomatillos. We have just torn out the zucchini and yellow squash to prepare for Fall cole crops. Arugula and broccoli go next.
I love BLTs, Nutz!
Darius, those peaches sound terrific. Are you measuring Brix for sugar control or just curious?
I discovered a package of frozen chicken wings with a split in the plastic. There's some freezer burn. I'm going to try and revive them. Not sure what I want to do to them. My brain is tomato boggled. I canned six more quarts of tomatoes before leaving Maypop yesterday and ended up hauling home the remainder...
Yes, Brix will measure sugars, but it's actually more than just sugars that are being measured; it's dissolved solids. The Brix degree (Bxº) is determined by the way all the dissolved substances in a solution refract the light that passes through the liquid.
Exactly how much the light is refracted is determined by a number of factors:
• The number of dissolved atoms in the solution
• The atomic weight of the dissolved atoms
• The structure of the molecules formed by the dissolved atoms
Higher Brix certainly means higher sugars in fruits (and thus better taste), but higher Brix indicates a number of other things too, such as a plant's health. Plants with high Brix in their leaves/stems are healthier (they are getting balanced nutrition from the soil) and do not attract pests (Nature's Clean-Up Crew). High Brix fruits and vegetables will simply dry out over time if left on the counter, rather than spoil and rot.
I had a refractometer for years, bought for testing the sugars in grapes meant for wines. It was a long time before I learned it could also measure vegetable juices, or even the juice in emerging leaves of plants to see if my amendments were balanced enough to produce healthy plants to make healthy vegetables. The tastiest beans I ever grew had a Brix measurement off the scale. I never did figure out exactly what combination I used that year in soil amendments.
I wish I'd seen this yesterday - last night's dinner was more garden oriented - fresh refrigerator pickles, marinated sweet peppers, fresh spaghetti sauce with all my own ingredients (except for EVOO) including roasted red peppers and dried tomatoes and lots of garlic. And some excellent chicken sausage from Sam's Club.
I'm loving reading your menus - lots of ideas here that I hadn't thought of! Thank you.
We had to drive up north (yes, there is north of us!) for a funeral today at a Lutheran Church. After the service, and the 21 gun salute for the deceased, the church ladies served lunch. I thought I had been transported to Lake Wobegon. There were more entrées on those tables than there are at our favorite chinese buffet. They had five or six noodle casseroles of varying types, a dish of rigatoni with red sauce...and wait for it...corn! (?) German and French potato salad, macaroni and cheese, lasagna, sausage and kraut, rolls and ham and cheese to make a sandwich, pickles, two different cheese plates, meatballs, jello salads, cucumber salad, and a few more dishes I missed as I staggered down the line trying to keep my plate level. Then there was the dessert table. Thirteen (I counted) different desserts. Cakes, brownies, bar cookies, some kind of lemony fluffy cream on a graham cracker crust, strawberry rhubarb something, and cherry cheesecake bars. I made the remark to the minister about Lake Wobegon, and he laughed and said his last church was in Minnesota, so he wasn't at all surprised at the spread. Some things were brought by the family but the church ladies made quite a few of them, did the table settings, and the clean up. We will have NO dinner tonight.
I could use another ham sandwich though. And a piece of that chocolate lava cake!
Cindy, it's hard work in the kitchen keeping up with the garden this time of summer. What's your zone? Let me know when the garlic thing is happening at Loganberry Farm. If I'm around you're welcome to come over to Maypop.
I'm going to hold off on the wings because we had a sizable lunch. I'll make grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches with a bit of Smithfield ham SO smoked a while back. We have our newly brined pickles too.
No lutefisk!! I'm a tad disappointed but maybe they didn't want to stink up the church!! LOL My DGM used to make it with a white sauce, and served over boiled potatos. I like lefse too. We grew up on that stuff. I made Kroppkakor not long ago, but it didn't taste as good as what I remembered. I blamed the lack of salt pork, which is hard to find, I used smoked bacon.
I think it was the lutefisk that got those Valkyrie women screaming. P.U.! That goes on my short list of No Eats. The other is boiled chitlins. They smell like a 1950's home permanent. Hot sauce does not help. I have eaten some weird and stinky food in my life (and loved it) but not those two items.
Terry, your church does this every Sunday? No wonder you are always running. Bible camp must be murder.
While pregnant in 1977/78 I lived in a home where chitlins were cooked often. I started to say weekly but my memory may be exagerating things...whew...there were days Alice...never did actually eat them.
Tonight I have rubbed a boneless skinless chx brst with just Aleppo pepper, wrapped it plastic wrap and will ask hubby to use minimal other flavors on it (no secret sauce) when he cooks it. I've been using that pepper [new to me] and want to really taste it. Maybe baste with chicken broth.
Left over roasted beets/onion/garlic, no 5-minute bread...waahhhh. Maybe a small salad.
We still have shad in the freezer, so we had our shad-loving friends over for dinner and did the whole smoker thing again - dry rub on the shad first and then smoked low and slow for three hours, toward the end of which I added some roe that I had brined and seasoned with rub and then grilled quickly in butter in a hot pan. Along with that we had risotto with porcini, oven-grilled asparagus (from the freezer), and our own tomatoes with basil and garlic and balsamic vinegar and just a spurt of oil. Our friends brought some homemade blueberry cake from freshly picked berries and vanilla ice cream for dessert. We went out for a long slow boat ride first; they hadn't been up our river in a while and we wanted to see how extensive the stands of a globally endangered plant are. Not very, but it varies from year to year. Beautiful day for a boat ride, too - 80's and low humidity. We saw kingfishers, a least bittern, and a green heron, along with the osprey in the nest across from our dock. The eagle didn't show.
The only thing I ever ate that grossed me out, as the previous posters were discussing, was andouillette, at a brasserie in Paris. It smelled and tasted like something that should have been in a toilet. Gaak! I really tried, too. Even DH couldn't eat it, and he has a stronger stomach than I do.
My husband loves lamb, but I've always been timid about trying to cook it, so he orders it off the menu occasionally when we're eating out.
I LOVE tapioca. Not just regular ol' tapioca pudding, but my grandmother made a fruit salad she called "frog's eyes" with tapioca. (If you don't love tapioca or slippery foods, that one probably won't entice you to try it, but it's one of those wonderful childhood memories and I've got a bag of tapioca pearls sitting here waiting for me to take a stab at it.)I'
Laurel, no - not every Sunday. Whew. More like 4 or 5 times a year :-) And while I adore the spread they put out and the tradition it represents, I find myself less likely to overindulge on those days. One pass through the line with a bit of this and a tad of that, and maybe a second pass for something that really hit the spot. It's more about the conversation and fellowship for me.
I have no idea how I'm going to find time tomorrow to make preserves but I have a bag of ripe figs being delivered to me this morning. Woot! A friend of ours does landscaping and one of his clients is elderly and doesn't give a ...well, a flying fig...about picking them herself. So he's picking and bringing the bounty to me for processing, and I'll repay him with several jars of preserves and one to give to the tree's owner. He's also getting me pears in a few weeks - same song, second verse. Pear honey, here we come!
Any tips or pointers on making fig preserves? I've always just eaten them fresh or eaten someone else's preserves.
I have relatively few food dislikes, more textural issues--like wet bread, overcooked broccoli, cabbage, or cauliflower, can't drink a liquid thicker than water, grainy apples, gelatinous but not totally gelled textures, etc. Dislike for brussels sprouts, meat and anything remotely fishy are never, ever going away.
I like tapioca too...and cottage cheese. Often when I'd be eating cc at work someone would say "Are you on a diet?" I don't think I want to know what wannadanc 'knows' about tapioca. What I don't know won't bother me...dee de deee deee...fingers in ears. :-)
I dunno about that...I have a child who reluctantly entered the world two weeks late (I think he'd still be in the womb if it were possible for a 23-year-old to be in there), and he has intense dislike of a lot of textures. I blame it on me caving in and letting him eat McDonald's food when he was a tot. In retrospect, should have held my ground and pushed more fruit and veggies. It's not like he was going to starve to death :-)
My sister was born with no sense of smell and has always enjoyed foods with lots of textures. Tapioca was a favorite of hers when we were growing up. I always figured she probably couldn't taste much and so was drawn to texture in her foods.
I've got enough maters to make a nice pan of roasted sauce today. And red peppers are finally ready too. Yippee!
Highly interesting!! I love cottage cheese and have even made a sandwich on pumpernickel rye with cottage cheese, thin slice of onion, salt and pepper...Okra I can live without, love lamb done right and brussels sprouts tender crisp with bacon. I guess my issues are with slimey, mushy too.
Can you pop the figs in the freezer and do them up later??
Perfectly perfect - and that IS all I know about tapioca. I eat a number of things others find disgusting - like raw oysters, I abhor bread pudding, but both my now adult sons adore it - having NEVER been fed such as that when they were in my care and custody. Life is strange, but what a wonderful assortment of choices are out there for us!!
Maypop – You have a lot of varieties. What are the dark cherry tomatoes in the bowl? Agree on the lutefisk. Blood sausage is another I thing that I have problems with it's smell & taste.
Meezer – Most of the farm or small town burials that I’ve been to have a post burial meal where the town drops by and leaves behind a lot of food. It always seems like everyone brings their best dish.
We also had the large tapioca growing up. We called them fish eyes and used them in a custard. I use the small version a lot with cooked fresh fruit instead of adding a lot of sugar.
Love baby lima beans. Have some plants in the ground this year and hoping to harvest a few.
I ran into someone who mentioned a web site where you can put in food allergies and it will pull up recipes that don’t contains those foods. Anyone have an idea what web site that might be?
I knew a family when I was small that had a orchard of pears. We used to go over and get several bushels from them. I remember more about the amount of pear products that they made then much else. Honey was one of them. They also made pear syrup.
Well things have turned lively here. The joke in our home is we'll eat anything if it's moving slowly enough. Boiled chitlins can slither around (and off) the plate pretty darn fast.
Susan the dark cherries are called 'Black Cherry' http://davesgarden.com/guides/pf/go/88786/ They taste like Cherokee Purple or Black Krim, IMO, and are larger than typical cherries. This is at the top of my cherry list and near the top of my tomato list. Fantastic for scooping out the seed and gel and stuffing with herbed goat cheese, a blue cheese and cream cheese mixture, gorgonzola or the like.
Terry, I use the basic Ball Book recipe with some twists...
1. five pounds of figs (equals approx. two quarts), washed and stemmed. I don't bother to heat them or chop them
2. 6 cups of sugar
3. 1/4 cup of lemon juice (that's about two lemons worth)
4. 3/4 cup of water
I got a wild hair (got lots of those) and added two big branches of mint, stems and all. Crushed them a bit in my hands first.The leaves cooked off and I removed the stems near the end. The smell was incredible. I always zest the lemons before squeezing. If you don't have a microplane peel, julienne and then chop. I've used freshly grated ginger with the lemon instead of mint and lemon.
Throw everything in a big pot because it burbles and spits as it thickens. You can pop the figs as they cook so no need to chop. I should have put newspaper on the floor around the stove. It took a looong time for it to sheet 'cause I did ten pounds of figs. More than two hours. Great for chatting on the computer or streaming good stuff. Do you know how to test it? When, instead of droplets falling off a large spoon separately, there are two droplets that coalesce at the center of the spoon and drip off as one blob it is ready. The spoon should be held sideways and not be hot. If you test and are not sure and want to test again rinse the spoon in cool water. I always can pints and then regret not making smaller jars. Ball has the cutest little squat half pint jars at Lowes these days.
Since today has a "T" in it I must can tomatoes. SO is talking about doing another fig run too. Those will have to wait 'til tomorrow.
I think tapioca deserves its own thread - an homage to its wonderfulness *grin*
Thanks Laurel; that helps a lot. No pectin, though?
And uhhh, newspaper on the floor huh? Tomorrow is going to be one messy day, bright and early in my kitchen. Good tip on the jars. I've got plenty of little jelly/preserve jars, but the first batch of figs deserve something a little special. (Of course, I may wind up saying the same thing about the pear honey and the pepper/onion relish I'm determined to try, and anything else I put my mind to canning in the next several weeks.)
Can anyone guess what our family and friends are getting for Christmas this year?
Dinner tonight is iffy. I have to be somewhere by 6:30 and my crew is accustomed to not eating until 6:30 or 7. So they might have to fend for themselves if I don't get something ready early.
Terry, no pectin is suggested in this recipe. I never use pectin in any of my jams anyway but certain ones def don't need it. To me it makes jam taste a little like jello because the jam isn't thickened naturally. If you can up some pints they are great for pies. I made a killer one with fresh apples and fig jam last year. I think I've done pear and fig pie too. My floor was a mess because I did ten pounds of figs. The pot was a few inches from being full and should only be about three quarters (see photo for jamming on the edge).
I'm going to pan saute those chicken wings tonight and then simmer them in fresh tomatoes, garlic and herbs. It will go with pasta and a salad.
Yep, Bubble Tea uses pearl tapioca, but cooked a bit differently. I had this in my files, no source on it, and intended to play around with bubble drinks at some point...
How to cook Tapioca Pearls for Bubble Tea:
1 cup Tapioca Pearls
6-8 cups water
Approximately 6-10 servings
1. The ratio should be a minimum of 7:1, water to tapioca pearls.
2. Boil water in a large pot.
3. Add in the tapioca pearls to boiling water.
4. The tapioca pearls should float in the water.
5. Boil tapioca for 10 minutes with the cover on.
6. Turn the heat off and let tapioca sit in the water for 13 minutes.
7. Rinse the cooked tapioca pearls in warm water and drain out the water.
8. Cover with bubble tea sugar syrup or brown sugar and serve.
Note: This is for those that want to make Bubble Tea at home and don't want to wait an hour. What I do is boil the tapioca pearls for 10 minutes and let it sit for 13 minutes. I rinse the tapioca pearls and then place in a gallon zip loc bag flat. Store in the freezer flat. When I get the urge, I boil a cup of water and put a piece of the frozen tapioca pearls in for about 2-3 minutes. Rinse, cover in sugar syrup and serve. It usually lasts a few days before it gets too mushy. Enjoy!
I planted a mess of shallots last fall. Something got into them this spring, and I only harvested 3 puny shallots. Tonight I sautéed all three, half with fresh haricot verts (Yum!) and half to add to some pork shoulder marinating for sausages.
In the final analysis, I had 3 quarts of figs (after I made myself stop eating them last night.)
And after a very bubbly, burpy morning (thank goodness for big kettles), I have 12 half-pints of preserves in water baths, waiting for them to boil. One half-pint is in the fridge and I'm going to try making some fig newtons - I've always wanted to try to make them, and now I can without worrying about using up all my fig preserves.
Four jars are going back to the source so he'll bring me more another batch or two of figs, and to repay the kind woman whose tree is chock-full of fruit.
The next batch or two will go in a mix of pint and half-pint jars - some to keep, most to give away. My husband works with some foodies, and I have some friends who have seen my blog and Facebook posts and are angling for a jar already :-)
And thanks for the tip on the squat square half-pints - I snagged 5 boxes (20 jars) today. They will be perfect for a few homemade Christmas gifts this year.
this is a new topic for another forum which I will post in but interested here since everyone likes to cook
do you have kitchen garden? I have a real small space (but sunny) maybe 6 feet by 4 feet and each year I end up either regretting what I planted or not so much regretting the choice but the space isn't really optimal for it (like it spreads too much or leaves seeds for next year and maybe next year I don't plan for those to sprout and take up space) So, what would you plant right outside your kitchen door to use to cook and flavor if you only had a wee bit of space in the sun? Also mention varieties (like if you choose basil...which?)
That definitely deserves its own thread since it's a topic that goes far and away beyond what we're having for dinner :-) But it's a really good question. We have a forum for vegetable gardening if you'd like to try it there?