We came from here: http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/t/1244615/ but it's time to start a new thread! I'm honestly not sure what's for dinner tonight. I have a list of must-do's as long as my arm today, so it may be a catch-as-catch-can kind of dinner. What's on your menu for tonight?
Youngest son is coming for dinner and we've got a busy day. I put a brisket, carrots, celery, mushrooms, previously slow roasted cherry tomatoes and Vidalia onions in the crockpot. This should give us leftovers to take to Maypop tomorrow.
A friend of mine recommends Fungi Perfecti for mushroom kits. She's a hoot. Never to do anything just part way, she joined the mycological society when she got interested in mushrooms. I've considered growing mushrooms at times but have not tried it yet.
I had a clean-up the fridge and freezer dinner. Cabbage, red peppers, onion w/ground beef and homemade roasted tomato sauce. Its become a staple meal. Tastes great and so healthy!
That sounds so refreshing, Susan. Is "fresh sweet pea soup" from the garden? My peas are only four inches tall.
Speaking of gardens, that's where our day has gone. I was out from early until 6:15. I have simmered chicken for matzo ball soup and we are going to have some of that chicken in tortillas with fixings. Tomorrow night is the last night we can eat certain grains for a week, including wheat, so we are indulging now.
Half of my asparagus is planted in a rock-faced raised bed against the house, so it's warmer, and always a lot earlier than what's in the veggie garden. Even at that, these were just a few spears, not an abundance yet.
I so need time to get my garden going!!! I have to visit my parents this weekend so it'll have to wait 'til next. I do have peppers & tomatoes seedlings going in the greenhouse. Maybe the asparagus will be up - will check today.
Susan - what did you do with the acorn squash? I still have a number of butternut squash from last year I need to eat.
I've had to replant spinach, chard and leeks because almost nothing came up.
I scored with some duck confit from Maple Leaf Farms - super good price although for some reason they don't sell duck fat. So I'm going to try some tonight along with Pommes Sarladaises and a green salad. I had Pommes Sarladaises in Sarlat, and it was delicious. I can use some of the duck fat from the confit to cook it.
We are picking a few asparagus sprigs, but we had a bad infestation of voles this winter, and I think they ate a lot of the roots. Just make me sick, as it takes so long to get a bed of asparagus started.
One way I like to fix it is to heat olive oil in a skillet, add crushed garlic, asparagus and saute, then put a little balsamic vinegar over it right before serving. Yum Yum.
Ack, voles in the asparagus! Deb, you just reminded me that the asparagus in my veggie garden is just a few feet from that area where the voles ate parts of every single one of my sweet potatoes last year. So... I may not have any asparagus there anymore. sigh.
No such luck on peas out of the garden yet. Although we should be able to harvest some of the pea greens soon. The recipe I used was off of yesterday’s Chew. To my surprise the DH liked it and I wasn’t as happy about it. It’s healthy as it uses Greek yogurt instead of cream as a base. And it was easy to make.
Anyone have a served cold soup that they like and would be willing to share? I'm trying to find some that I can use in the summer. So far the experimentations have been only okay.
Yum on the asparagus. We’ve talked about planting some but haven’t yet. The rhubarb that we planted a couple of years ago looks like it died from the drought last fall. Or something ate it all. No sign of it in the garden.
Lavender arrived yesterday. We got both cooking and baking lavender. Now I just have to figure out how to cook with it.
We just cut it in half and baked it plain. It was a small acorn and so worked well that way. Ways we like to cook the acorn is (1) stuffed with a combination of pear, cranberries, honey and cinnamon; (2) sprinkle cinnamon sugar on the inside; and (2) Stuffed with apples, honey, and cinnamon: (3) cut in slices, tossed in canola oil and some kind of herb like sage. My parents used to stuff their acorn squash with spicy sausage. It's good that way as long as the sausage or meat is lean. If it's a high fat meat then the melted fat tends to pool in the acorn.
Susan, here is a cold soup that we enjoy, I think it is derived from a Southern Living recipe a number of years ago:
Cucumber Soup with Dill Cream
2 cups half and half -- divided
4 cucumbers -- peeled, seeded, and
2 green onions -- sliced
1 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 container sour cream -- (16 oz)
1/2 teas. salt
1/2 teas. hot sauce
1/2 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp. chopped fresh dill weed
Garnish: fresh dill sprigs
Process 1 cup half and half, cucumber, green onions and lemon juice in blender or food processor until smooth, stopping to scrape down sides.
Stir together cucumber mixture, remaining 1 cup half and half, 16 oz sour cream, salt and hot sauce. Cover and chill 8 hours.
Stir together 1/2 cup sour cream and dill; dollop on each serving, and garnish, if desired. Yield 1 1/2 quarts (6 one cup servings)
Prep time: 15 minutes, Chill: 8 hours.
Dinner is roasted chicken, green beans with onions and garlic, mashed potatoes, homemade noodles, and banana nut bread for dessert. Haven't had this for a long time, so am really looking forward to this meal.
Nice sounding meals. Glad to hear the garden is moving along and SO is progressing on foods he can eat.
We are headed into the garden for more planting this weekend. Seems like the herbs go in next. I've started putting out the tomato, peppers, and eggplants to harden them off. They go in soon. We started the watermelon and cantalope seeds inside this year to see if we get earlier or better yeilds.
I got into the kitchen and changes what we were having for veggies. Left overs from last night plus a salad made out of sliced fennel bulb, chopped fennel frons, sliced pear, dried tart cherries, and toasted hazel nuts with an overall dressing of verjus and mustard. Salad turned out well.
Tonight is the first night of Passover and we are having a quiet seder here in the mountains. Matzo ball soup with veggies for starters. An herb roasted leg of lamb with rosemary, garlic roasted potatoes, in schmaltz, and the last of our fall planted garden cabbages. That and all the ritual foods like roasted eggs, ground horseradish and a dish made with apples, ground toasted nuts, honey and spices. There is beautiful parsley in the garden for the spring green component of the seder plate. Now off to cook.
I know parsley is a biennial, but mine I planted last summer haven't come back. I was at least hoping for seeds. Can't blame it on the winter because it was mild enough that my ONE artichoke survived and it should flower and fruit this summer... if the frost tonight (and again later next week) don't do it in.
Everything is under control 'cept I almost went blind from horseradish fumes when the top to the food processor was removed. So strong it hit my lungs too. Phew! I make SO taste it every year. Must be just right since he was reeling and choking.
We don't have a formal seder plate at Maypop but SO sliced a 2" thick tree slab awhile back and that will do fine. We forgot to bring our haggadot, the ritual order of the service. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Haggadah_of_Pesach SO found several online versions. We'll be sitting at the table with the 'droids. That's pretty New Age for Old Toots. LOL
I am always offline from sundown on Fridays until after sundown on Saturdays so if I'm not back here this afternoon I want to wish those of you who celebrate Passover or Easter a very meaningful holiday. Of course good food wishes go without saying.
This year my rhubarb is large enough on all 3 plants for a decent harvest. So far I'm thinking a rhubarb BBQ sauce, rhubarb turnovers (maybe with another fruit like blueberries or raspberries, or maybe not) and a rhubarb sweet and sour sauce for chicken or pork.
I'll dehydrate and/or freeze whatever else I can safely harvest for use later.
I may still have some containers of Victoria Sauce from rhubarb; it's been in the freezer for years. We have rhubarb but I tend not to use it.
Last night we went out for dinner and I had Oysters Rockefeller, with lobster bisque for first. It was delicious. Tonight we're having lamb shanks and lentil in the crockpot, and tomorrow I'm doing my rather casual version of a seder. We always celebrate it on Easter Sunday because the kids are over and it's a good way to have everyone together.
Anything rhubarb is my favorite. I have a family recipe for rhubarb quick bread if you are interested in it. Usually we just cut the rhubarb up, throw it in a pan with a little sugar, cot it, and eat it by itself. Sometimes I also throw in some tapioca. We both like the sauce tart. It works great as a sauce over other things also.
Dinner is a fusion of two recipes. DH is cooking beef satay stir-fry.
I don't remember how we made the Victoria Sauce, Darius. I just looked in my old, yellowed "Receipts" looseleaf notebook but it's not there and I have no idea where I got the original recipe. I made it when we lived on our island in Washington State and haven't done it since. I think it was rhubarb and raisins and sugar cooked down into a sauce, but there may have been other ingredients, too, like cinnamon.
I really love Oysters Rockefeller and fried oysters; there's also a scalloped oyster recipe that's good. A couple of Sundays ago we went with friends to an oyster and ham dinner at a local fire hall; none of us ever touch the ham, and the oysters are all-you-can-eat. We do make pigs of ourselves!
The BBQ sauce sounds good. I've never grown rhubarb and have only eaten it a few times in my life. It is not so common in the hotter south.
Leslie, my mom used to make the best oysters Rockefeller! We were just talking about them a few days ago. Maybe Darius remembers the restaurant, Tony's Fish Market. They had wonderful ones too. Lobster bisque brings back memories. We had that as a first course the first night we were married with a surf n' turf dinner. Looking back this is not sounding like such a healthy diet. lol Have a good seder. Have you seen the two minute seder on line? It's a riot. http://www.slate.com/articles/news_and_politics/low_concept/2006/04/the_twominute_haggadah.html
I think I vaguely remember a Tony's Fish Market, over on the Beach, IIRC. We never ate out much, but there was a great Portuguese restaurant in downtown Miami some boyfriend took me to when I first started dating.
I'm back in Atlanta and already made a huge mache salad for dinner. We'll have that with leftover matzo ball soup.
Leslie, since we forgot to bring our haggadot I went looking for something online and found this downloadable one. http://www.haggadah.btinternet.co.uk/ It's short and more simplistic than our usual radical social "fix the world" haggadot but is perfect for a blended family and young children.
Celene, those matzo balls sound delish. I don't know what they are doing to chickens these days (actually I do). My schmaltz was white and not yellow.
Laurel, nice haggadah. We don't really do any sort of service; I'm basically the only Jew and we never did a seder when I was growing up so I don't know how to conduct it. We have gone to friends who celebrate it properly and that was an excellent experience, but I don't think my family would have much patience with a lengthy service at home.
Leslie, then there are the seders that start at five and go 'til midnight. The little kids are asleep under the table. The adults that left their hollow leg home can't handle four glasses of wine, plus what they drank from Elijah's giant cup while the kids are off looking for the afikomen, are down there with them.
Celene, you would think with a diet of GMO corn today's schmaltz would be eggstra yellow.
I should learn to make matzo balls. You'd think since I dated (and almost married) a Jew for 7 years, I'd know how. But his father was a baker not a cook, and his mother hated me. Howie ended up becoming orthodox, and owning a renowned Jewish bakery on Alton Road.
Matzoh balls are really easy. I have a recipe that my mother and grandmother used; the only thing is that I always have to let them cook for much longer than the recipe directs to get them to expand enough so that they're truly light. Why didn't Howie's mother like you - because you weren't Jewish or did your personalities not mesh? If he ended up becoming orthodox it's probably a good thing you didn't marry; I have a friend who has turned orthodox and I find her very narrow-minded and biased now.
Leslie, she didn't like me because I wasn't Jewish, nothing personal. She made several vituperative calls to my mother when Howie was home on leave (Air Force), but his father really liked me. They lived clear across town when Howie and I started dating, and years later after my mother had remarried, the Gorens bought the house directly across the street from my mother's new house. They were cordial, of course... but never really friendly.
Darius, just think of all the great food Howie is missing. You wouldn't have had to worry about matzo balls. Many a Jewish cook makes matzo balls that should be registered as ammunition.
I had a boyfriend from an Orthodox family. He was less observant than his folks but more than what I grew up with. I'd go to New York and stay with his family (mom, dad, sister, brother) in Washington Heights, where every single family in every apartment building for miles was Orthodox. I was surprised they liked me. Compared to them I was a heathen. Actually it was the sixties and I was a bit heathen. :) Those stays were a real education in observance since my family was Reform. We observed but the practices are not the same. Orthodoxy was like a different religion. Friday afternoons were dedicated to scurrying about preparing for Shabbot (Sabbath). Every Friday sundown to Saturday sundown is considered a holy holiday. Special foods were cooked and placed on hot plates because the stove cannot be lit on Shabbat. Toilet paper and paper towels were torn and stacked in advance (so as not to render or cut). All lights that needed to be on were turned on before sunset and left on because you can't turn on/off lights once candles are lit. The refrigerator and oven light buttons were taped in, so as to stay off, because you would otherwise be turning on the light if you opened the door. Today major appliance makers have what's called "Shabbat mode appliances" where the lights can be cut off or programmed to go off on Shabbat. The "shabbos goy" (building custodian) carried the keys and pocket money of the father since carrying money or adornment/keys is not allowed. He had to let us in and out of the apartment. He was tipped out after sundown on Saturday. After the three hour morning service on Saturday the entire congregation went to the home of the rabbi and his family for a cold luncheon previously made and delivered (because you can't carry) by volunteer congregants. We walked to the synagogue, then the rabbis house and then home. That was the first and last time I wore heels. The experience helped me understand how my dad grew up as an Orthodox Jew in New York and how my grandfather lived as an American immigrant. I can understand what attracts people to practice a faith or philosophy in a strict and literal sense. There is really no difference here then with an observant Buddhist or Krishna or Mennonite or Catholic. There is a hope to be more spiritually in touch. But I am really off track and off topic here...Meanwhile, the boyfriend was a really nice guy and so was the family but he wasn't "the one". He ended up marrying a girl who was not Jewish. His family disowned him and never spoke to him again. So sad.
Laurel, fascinating! And interesting that the son ended up marrying a non-Jew. Obviously their religious inculcation didn't take or he would never have considered that. The ultra-Orthodox people I have met seem to be almost as rabid as many of any other religion's ultra-orthodox, and that always concerns me...
We have friends that are Orthodox, and they're just like us, with more dietary restrictions :) Some of my father's relatives are observant, others not-so-observant. Because of hard feelings about my parent's mixed marriage, I didn't have as good a relationship with some of my father's family until my great-grandmother came to this country and made them act like grownups for the sake of the family. A job she passed down to me, lol.
Did anyone see the trio of different-colored matzo balls on the Epicurious website? I like the look of that, but I can hear my Zia Sophia starting to hyperventilate, like a disturbance in the force. She's the one who grumbled about sweet potato latke with sour cream and caramelized pecans, while eating about six or eight of them.
Celene, there's Orthodox and there's ultra-Orthodox, at least among people I've run across. The ultra-Orthodox dress differently and seem very judgmental about people who don't follow their beliefs. Maybe I've just come across an odd sample, though.
Good for your great-grandmother, bringing some sanity to the family!
My grandmother kept kosher, except when we went to Atlantic City in the summer and caught crabs off the deck. She had plates she called "crabadische"...
For dinner tonight: Easter brunch leftovers. We had 10 guests celebrate Easter with us. I made 1/2 ton too much food. So, tonight, it's anyone's pick of: chichen liver pâté, caramelized balsamic onions, asparagus mousse, gravad lax with cream cheese and onions, broccoli and cashew salad, potato salad, baked ham, french bread, and black forest cake - all of that homemade, of course. Thank Him above that yesterday's guests all took away part of the leftovers. It makes leftovers easier to manage.
Last week, I was neck-deep in PlantScout corrections. Taxonomy fun and games - whew! We did eat, but I'm not sure I could tell you what I cooked. Last night we enjoyed an Easter supper instead of traditional mid-day meal: ham, macaroni & cheese, green bean casserole, Coca-cola cake and fresh strawberry shortcakes. Deviled eggs were also on the menu, but as I started putting away the leftovers, I discovered the platter of them in the fridge. Ooops. Egg salad, here we come.
Regardless, it was nice having all the kids over for a meal, even if it wasn't quite the typical Easter holiday. There's a ginormous plastic egg filled with green shredded stuff and candy eggs and bunnies and candy-looking carrots. I don't drag out the childhood baskets any more but I do still buy them candy. Eventually the rabbits will become ear-less, then head-less and the foil-wrapped eggs will be nibbled to pieces. Traditions and habits die hard.
This morning, my coffee maker managed to eke out two cups of coffee before breathing its last gasp. I'll be on the hunt for a replacement before nightfall. (I'd take a lunch break and head to town now, but our tenant called to say the plumbing in the master bath at the old house is acting up, so I'm waiting for the plumber to call me back and give me an ETA on when they can meet me over there and get things unclogged.
I just put a 6 lb. pork shoulder roast in the oven, after marinating it overnight. 20 minutes at 500º, and then cooked in a slow oven until done. I still have several butternut squash in the pantry; guess I'll roast one while I have the oven going... and steam some fresh asparagus. I'm not getting as many spears as usual. Either the roots are aging, or it doesn't get enough rain in that bed due to the roof overhang.
Glad you survived your week, Terry. I'd leave the eggs as grab and go snacks. Sounds like you did double duty with the holiday cooking.
I pulled stuffed cabbage out of the freezer for dinner. We are going out tonight and wanted a one dish meal that could be warmed up easily. While digging around I grabbed a flank steak to marinade and grill tomorrow.
I think the stone-faced bed (with a concrete bottom) growing the asparagus is the only spot on the entire 19 acres that the moles/voles cannot access. It's about 2 feet deep and doesn't get water-logged. In fact, I'm thinking of adding a new row of just male asparagus closer to the front. What's in there now is Mary Washington, mixed.
I finally had a chance to do a grocery run. It seems like its been months. DH has been grabbing a few items for me each time he is out scouting for the perfect banana. (Does anyone else go to three stores if necessary to get just the right bananas?) Late but I put together a chicken, mushroom & broccoli pasta dish. Grapefruit for dessert.
Darius - when I was growing up, I liked my bananas the ripest of any of the family. They were always all eaten before they were ready. lol I am so happy that my DH & I are so compatible! We both enjoy them the same ripeness. :-)
MaryP - DH looks for the biggest bananas he can find.
The muffins are okay. The blueberry scones from ealier in the week were better.
3/4 cp of low fat milk
1 large egg
1/4 cp of almond oil ( or canola with 1 tsp of almond flavoring)
1 tsp vanilla
1.5 cps of cooked quinoa
1 cp of whole wheat flour
1 cp of barley or quinoa flour2 tsp of baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
Combine dry ingredence. Combine wet ingredence. Mix 1/2 dry into wet then mix the rest. Cook for 20 minutes at 375degF. Makes 12 muffins. 190 cal each.
I'm with the green banana group, ripe bananas are only fit to use for banana bread. Tonight is grilled rueben sandwiches, slaw and ??? Stayed in the garden planting too long to give supper much thought, but squash, cucumbers, green beans, beets, basil, lettuce, cilantro, and parsley are in. Water lilies in the pond are divided and re-potted. Still resisting planting tomatoes and peppers yet. Flower planters are filled, best find was the black petunias. Will add a few patio veggie planters when we do the garden veggie plants, when we get back late next week. (Don't want to explain covering and uncovering all of them and hope it gets done.)
I had no idea so many folks like green banana's. I guess I'll have to try one, can't say that I ever have. I like them nice and yellow, before they start to brown. Over ripe ones I peel, break in sections and freeze for smoothies.
Tonight is leftover Turkey Tortilla Soup that DH made yesterday. What a treat that was! He does not normally get involved in the cooking but recently commented he'd like to try his hand at that particular soup - so I [very quickly] located a recipe. ;-)
If you look carefully to get all the thin strings (along the length) of somewhat ripe bananas, they will have less of a ripe banana taste. Strange that I can abide the taste of ripe bananas in banana bread, but not in fresh bananas nor banana pudding.
I do NOT like green or firm bananas, Sam I Am! I don't like them mushy, but to me they taste better when they are all yellow and a bit soft.
We had leftover kosher chicken from Sunday night, along with matzoh kugel and broccoli. Kosher chicken is so much tastier, juicier and more tender than the other kind; it was nice to be able to eat it, just DH and me, without all the hullaballoo of kids and toddlers. My supermarket offers free turkeys, hams, or kosher chickens for special holidays if the total of your purchases for a specified number of weeks exceeds $300, so because I had heard non-Jewish foodie friends rave about kosher chickens I got one with that offer a few years ago, and now that's what we always get when we have a chance. I even do kosher turkeys for Thanksgiving.
I have found Alton Brown's gazpacho recipe and it is to die for. I'll be making some later on this morning so it's nice and cold by dinner time. The tastes have to mingle and meld for a few hours. His recipe calls for olive oil, but I omit it altogether. The result is just great.
Pleasant surprise on Monday morning: I found the most gorgeous sweet red bell peppers at our local green grocer for next to nothing: 8 peppers for $2! And they are the size of a grapefruit; ideal for stuffing. I'll also make some deep fried yucca wedges with a side of peanut sauce to accompany the yuccas. Green grapes and Comté cheese for "dessert", followed by cigars and a generous glass of port wine quietly sipped on the terrace should round up the evening rather well. Life is good with a little planning.
Supper will be some chopped pork roast with some of the rhubarb BBQ sauce I made earlier today (I canned 10 half pint jars), and some fresh spinach lightly steamed. (The BBQ sauce turned out wonderfully tangy and tasty.)
We're having sausage in red gravy with ravioli tonight, and I scored some broccoli raab at a farmer's market so I'm sautéing that with garlic and olive oil for a side. Last night we finished up the lamb shanks with lentils; I got that from a new French Slow Cooker cookbook.
Shrimp and Grits? Are they cheesy grits or just straight up grits? :-)
It came from the accupuncturist/herbist. It's proably a herbal form of an anti-fungal. That's what the Drs give me when I get antibiotic shots. It's really about getting the balance back when I react to yeast/mold. When I eat a pizza I take one because the bread, cheese, and tomato sauce are issues with yeast/mold. Pizzas are rare in the house now although we've had a few lately.
Had a similar omlette this morning with kale and onions. I'll try it with garlic next time. BTW - It was red kale and I really like the taste of it.
Susan, yup, that's the one. This is the first recipe I've tried; it was good but not fantastic. I'll let you know about any others. I love cooking French and I also love the ease of crockpots so this one seemed a natural. There was no prep at all for the lamb shanks, though - just dump everything in the crockpot and walk away. I have other crockpot cookbooks that have you brown the meat and do other preliminary steps before filling the crockpot and leaving it. Usually I like those results better.
Tonight I will try Celene's Spaghetti - olive oil, garlic and peppers. Sounds wonderfully simple and good. Thanks for the idea. Today will likley be a wild and crazy day of tax preparing since we only have a very few days left to 'git 'er done'!!! Whew.
Darius, what about that rhubarb BBQ sauce? How's it done?
Dinner this week has been hit-or-miss, and really more miss than hit. My MIL has been in the hospital after a nasty bout with a virus over the weekend, so we've all taken turns hanging out with her; she's tentatively scheduled to come home today.
I have a roast I bought earlier in the week that I may put in the slow-cooker for tonight, and do some crashed or mashed potatoes to go with.
I have one lone ripe banana hanging out on the counter. Not enough for bread, and too ripe for anyone in my family to eat. I like green bananas and ripe bananas until the brown spots are bigger than the yellow patches. Then it's onto bread or cake or cookies.
There were two kinds of red kale listed when I was looking for recipes yesterday. One of them was russian. I don;t remember the other name just that the colors of the underside of the leaves were different. One is red and the other is someother color like maybe bluish. We have the one that the undersides are red. I'll see if I can find the article and post it.
Class is over for today and I am very tired. Three more weeks and only two classes then I'm done.
Dinner is either left over chicken cacciatore or out for the dinner. Depends how tired I am by the time DH gets home.
I've been busy with communications regarding the Miami house. It went on the market last week. Hope the activity keeps up. We have an interested buyer who has agreed to the asking price if the bank will come close with an appraisal for the loan. Fingers crossed. That kept me occupied until almost nine last night and the fish did not get cooked. It's fish tacos tonight.
Terry, glad MIL is improving and can go home. I'm sure she's getting the best care.
that redbar kale looks like what I grew last year. too tired to look. pretty sad 'eh?
I had a very long day. I made a quick veggie saute w/chicken and put it over ww pasta. Tasted good.
I'm going to be bi-coastal for the next few months. I sure hope I can find time to get the garden in and that DH takes care of it. I'll be in CA every other week. I scheduled the first couple trips to leave Sun afternoon but I need to revisit this. I definitely need the weekends!
I hope you have safe travels. There are several things I would do when traveling a lot. One is book a weekend there and have the DH travel out. The other is fly Monday Morning and Thursday/Friday night. With the last I had to work longer hours while there.
Tonight's fare: lentil and vegetable soup, garlic-studded roast boneless loin of pork with baked potatoes and a baked casserole of red cabbage, red onions, diced apples and homemade balsamic vinaigrette. Now, if I could just think of something good and on the healthy side for dessert...
I was mostly just grousing, Leslie. There are many things I can cook since I keep a 4 gallon bottled water jug atop a ceramic dispenser for drinking water. I just hate the accumulating pile of dirty dishes, utensils and cookware.
Yes, a good sandwich would be wonderful. I don't eat much bread anymore, nor keep any on hand (homemade or not) but a grilled cheese sounds great right now. Or a Reuben!
Granola bars Darius? Ugh, sorry for your troubles. Been there. Done that. It's not so much fun.
The other night I made the spaghetti Celene mentioned, adding and stir frying some asparagus I had on hand. It was great. Best part it was easy to prepare with stuff already on hand. Thanks for the inspiration!
I'm about to start some chile verde...the store has tomatillo's 2#'s for a buck and there's frozen tamales to use up. I'll freeze the extra chile and order more tamales!!
I finally tried chicken pot pie. I bought 14oz ramikens a few months ago but just hadn't put them together. I used store bought puff pastry to for the topper. They were really good! Have two extras - hoping they are as good the second time around.
We had brasciole (thin beef slices wrapped around stuffing) in red gravy with spaghetti last night. The kids were most appreciative; they love pasta. Tonight some of them will be here again and I'll probably do something with chicken. Their palates aren't very sophisticated so I may just bake it with barbecue sauce and serve it with baked beans.
We ate at one of several neighborhood Persian restaurants last night. Optional locations are necessary with this cuisine because of the varying nights they have belly dancers. They circulate around the tables like the mariachis did when Mexican restaurants became de rigueur. It's hard to converse when someone is clinking finger cymbals in your ear (not to mention has their navel in your face). I've taken to calling the restaurant of choice to make sure there are no dancers that night. We shared tahdig, a rice dish that's intentionally burned to a crispy golden crust on the bottom, a smokey eggplant spread http://www.onetribegourmet.com/2011/03/kashke-bademjan-a-persian-eggplant-spread/ served with walnuts, cheese and mint, koofteh (Persian meatballs) and grilled lamb skewers.
Tonight we will grill tri tip to go with an antipasto salad topped with cheeses and freshly grilled veggies.
Supper is far from my mind right now, but at least we have running water in the house again. I froze some things knowing I wouldn't get to them right away, and didn't take anything out to thaw once we got water again this afternoon. That's probably best because I have a huge pile of dirty dishes and cookware to tackle first. There are times I really wish I had a dishwasher, but not often. I'll likely have breakfast for supper.
I don't know if this would help in the future, Darius, but we keep a trash can filled with water for emergencies at Maypop. What with being spring fed, and the cistern located several hundred yards downhill, heavy rains or electrical outages can put us out of water. It beats hauling water uphill from the spring head.
Darius - great to hear you have water again! We haven't had a working dish washer in 12yrs. Don't miss it except on the occasion of a dinner party perhaps. But even then, we can wash everything pretty quickly.
Laurel - The smokey eggplant dish sounds delicious!
We just had leftover chicken pot pie. As good the second time - just warmed up & crispened in the oven.
I'm making veggie chili. I will prob. grill a chipotle-lime chicken breast and slice it over DH's portion. If I'm ambitious and we have no work emergencies overnight, I'll make some whole wheat and flaxseed corn muffins to go with it.
Last night was my birthday dinner. We had Alton Brown's gazpacho, garlic mashed potatoes, grilled lamb chops and fresh beets with a bottle of Château Ste Michelle Cabernet Sauvignon. Oy Ve, was that good. Happy birthday to me, WooHoo!
Tonight is going to be a chicken pot pie with large chunks of chicken meat, carrots, onions, celery all sitting in a glorious homemade béchamel sauce, in a pâte brisée that would make the nefarious Martha squirm with envy. Move over, Martha: let a real cook take care of dinner. Crimony, can this bear cook! LOL.
We will have "Fend for Yourself" tonight. We both have meetings early this evening...so it will just be pick and choose from leftovers from the fridge or grab something on your way to or back from the meetings.
Happy birthday, Sylvain. Sounds like a great dinner. I love beets!
Susan, I've got to do something fast with the remaining pile of butternuts here too.
We arrived at Maypop. I ran out and cut grass right before the skies let loose. Our out of town company visiting in Atlanta will join us here at Maypop after work. I'm making a variety of bites including spicy rosemary honey nuts with cheeses, a brisket grilled pepper and onion pizza, and grilled asparagus and eggplant agrodolce.
Hope to get to serious veggie planting in the coming days.
Everything sounds wonderful! Gazpacho. Garlic smashed taters. chicken pot pie...and grilled asparagus. We all *do* know how to enjoy a table.
Tonight it's grilled pork chops, fresh beets (my first harvest of this season) not sure what else, crash hot taters maybe.
After our oven died about a month ago, the bed broke last week. We've been practically sleeping on the floor on a bad mattress. The bed was old, a platform bed circa 1978, pretty teak finish but that stupid particle board underneath. Surprised it lasted this long. DH has been researching mattresses and I insisted on a new frame as well. We found a nice, solid wood queen platform bed at Cost Plus World Market for $600 and we got 10% off through their rewards program. It's outfitted with a Sealy Posterpedic pillow top. Be still my heart. Looking forward to a good night's sleep finally...zzzzzzzz
Leslie, I was reading a forum about wood chips as mulch, and one guy got a bonus in his 3-4 dump truck loads of chips... lots of morels! Most of the dried mushrooms I have are local chanterelles I dried, and some porcini, but only a few of some other kinds. I love mushrooms.
Happy Birthday E_G, sounds like you had a good celebration. Darius, I'd love to have mushrooms to harvest right in my backyard. I have a great Wild Rice and Mushroom soup recipe I'll upload if you are interested. It's very good.
My new range arrived yesterday - you know you're old when a new kitchen appliance excites you. There is a middle burner, hard to see in the picture and a removable griddle. It's no 'top-of-the-line' model but the difference from the Amana that came with the house is astounding. And it's LEVEL!! I had DH drag out a level before the installers left and we had a big laugh that the guy got it perfect.
Nice looking Stove. Being the engineer I am I noticed all the buttons (engineer's dream) and the nice wide oven window. HAve lots of good cooking with the new stove!
I've seen starter kits for mushrooms for sale several places on the web and then once in Craig's List. I'm guessing that it's not that hard to grow a batch. BTW - I think that the Chew anounced having a program something on how to grow mushrooms in ground coffee. I'm not sure if it's tomorrow or not.
Dinner tonight is roast turkey, salad, and a rhubarb-black raspberry whole wheat cake.
Future SIL is an electrical engineer. He specializes in microwave communications and tracking research. He will complete a second Master's in applied mathematics this fall. He keeps a dry erase board on the back of the bedroom door for those "Ah hah" moments.
I am home alone with the beasties for a few days. Meal planning involves wild hairs with leftovers.
Mary - terrific stove! And how cute is little Maggie! :-)
I'm not finding time to cook much lately. I finished work late the last couple nights - just had some eggs w/toast last night. I hope to find a place to stay in Ca that has an equipped kitchen so I can eat in most nights there.
I have a friend who is really into mushrooms - she gets those inoculated plugs and grows her own on logs outside as Darius suggested. Someday I will give them a try.
I wanted to be a Civil Engineer but in college was told over and over "Women don't build bridges and roads", so switched to mechanical. I'm very mechanically inclined but hated mechanical engineering for some reason. Probably designed one too many cams, LOL. I actually worked in biomedical engineering but there was no degree for it back in the dark ages.
Luckly I had college instructors and parents who encouraged me to be what I wanted to be. Post graduate engineering bosses were a mixed bag. The first one had the theory that if you couldn't take apart and put together a bicycle then you wouldn't ever be a good engineer. Took me until years later to realize that he must have been having a lapse in good judgement. Why else would you test an electrical engineer with a clearly mechanical question. He should have been asking about things that get powered.
I think dinner is out tonight. I've been in class all day and I'm tired. The instructor tends to get snappy with some people on things and it makes for a long 8 hours.
I'm another engineer. Dad thought it was a bad idea for me - I'm actually not very mechanically inclined. But its worked out - my communication skills (and people skills) are very highly prized. :-)
I spent a couple hours in town with a new group of middle school kids working on the school garden. Its a very poor school and about 80% of the kids come from family below the poverty line. Last year I got them a bunch of asparagus so that there would be something to harvest in the spring. Today we harvested a small crop and cooked it up in the home economics lab. Only one of the six kids have ever had it before. It was a HUGE hit. What a wonderful experience!
For dinner I made salmon cakes from leftover from the other day. Turned out really well. Oh - and had asparagus from my garden. soooo good.
Susan - a friend of a friend got me involved. Her kids go to this school and she's very involved. (She is just a wonderful wonderful person). She knew I was into gardening and thought maybe I'd be interested in helping out. Last year I was only able to get out there about 3 times 'cause I had conf calls the time they met. If they keep the Fri afternoon time, I should be able to join them when I'm in town.
A friend of mine did it at a local middle school here and her experience was good too. Volunteer work can be very gratifying if you find the right niche for yourself. A friend's church group bought dozens of tomato starts from me in Feb/Mar for their community garden. They want to feed the hungry in Phoenix. We'll do more seedlings in late summer for a fall garden.
I picked up a pack of red kale yesterday at a co-op, and found a recipe for sweet n' sour kale that sounds interesting. Maybe tomorrow, as I'm not feeling too great today. Some of that is a back-ache from too many hours driving over the last 2 days, but half of it was worth it for the grafting class I attended.
I'l be interested in what you think. BTW - I found the red kale good in stirfries and soups but a little too strong for scrambled eggs.
The grafting class sounds interesting and so do the trees that you brought back. A freind has a web site about fruit trees. He has lot of info on it. You might find it interesting. Look on the right bottom for links to growing info est. http://lawrencefruittreeproject.wordpress.com/
Susan, your veggie dinner sounds like a wonderful variety of flavors. Our peas are still a good week shy of flowering.
Darius, you're never short on projects. What trees did you bring back? I missed that post.
Last night I made veggie chowder over basmati rice. We spent most of the day working in the garden and had leftover chowder for lunch. Temperatures will be in the upper thirties tonight and probable frost tomorrow night. That's a big change from what the forecast was supposed to be. Here I am with dozens of tomatoes not planted. Broccoli, kale, collards and round two of cabbage are planted though.
We will have fajitas and fixings with leftover steak for dinner.
I missed that post too - about the trees you brought back. And what is a 'grafting' class? I guess it's grafting trees. A local nurseryman is 'building' me a lime/lemon tree. I hoped to plant it this past spring - yes peeps, spring is past for me, we hit 102° today...sigh...the nurseryman told me it is doing fine but still too small to plant out. I'm putting some corn in that spot for now. And beans and sqaush...tres sistah's.
I've been planting zucchini and the little sprouts just popped up. I grabbed some zucc from the market to hold me over as I'm craving a squash stir fry over buckwheat noodles. But tonight is pizza...first thing in the new oven. Should have happened *last* night but there was some mechanical difficulty (I don't favor those of you on here who figure this stuff out...). By the time DH realized I was flumoxed by the new buttons, (don't ask. I'm too embarrassed to share. ;-| ) I had ordered a pizza to be delivered. That worked.
I had found some organic chard at a market, so I bought a container of it and made gnocchi with chard and white beans, a recipe I copied from someplace or other. The gnocchi, chard and beans are cooked with diced tomatoes, onions, oregano and basil and garlic, and topped with mozzarella and parmesan cheese shortly before serving. It's a good vegetarian dish but DS was coming over for dinner, so I made country-style ribs in the crockpot, with diced tomatoes, garlic, oregano and basil and a bay leaf and some wine. They went well together and it was all quite tasty. For lunch we went to a crêperie where some of my French paintings are hanging, because I needed to change them out. I had a buckwheat crêpe with brie and walnuts on a bed of mixed greens.
I'm not a big chard fan either. Tried it and just moved on. Basically not a steamed green kinda girl. Maybe chopped and added to a ravioli or some such, but that's not my cooking style at the moment. Doing crepes is on my bucket list.
I used to make a lot of crepes because everyone seems to like them. I don't like pancakes, waffles or crepes. In fact, I'll go without breakfast if any of those are on the menu. I know, I know. Weird. I will make them for family. It sets me back a bit with Ethiopian food because restaurants serve dishes with a spongy, pancake-like bread, injera. The injera is used to pick up and fold around the various dishes It's made with teff flour, which is cool, but I don't care for the doughy, pasty texture.
I don't care for the texture of the teff Ethiopian bread either. The one we had looked and tasted like foam from a foam mattress. Not very appealing.
We have a whole wheat and oat waffle that is very good.
Pasta and sweet potato dishes turned out good and will be repeated anohter time. We both really like the sweet potato the best. Roasted sweet potatoes and roasted red onion that are seasoned with red pepper flakes, pepper and salt. Toss the roasted veggies in with black beans, diced red pepper, lots of cilantros, and verjus.
I don't think I posted the apple varieties I grafted. I believe they are all heirloom varieties:
Shockley (a North Georgia heirloom, keeps its shape well for pies and preserves) Ashmead's Kernel (highly-valued for juicing and hard cider) Cox's Orange Pippin (classic dessert apple, great for fresh eating, pies and cider) Arkansas Black (very long-keeping tart apple from Arkansas, thought to be a seedling of Winesap) Hewe's Crab (produces a delicious cinnamon-flavored cider that is both sugary and pungent. Thos. Jefferson planted his entire north orchard exclusively with this variety)
I feel a bit like Rip van Winkle..I woke up and I see y'all kept on cooking and eating while I was gone! Last week was one of "those" weeks. Trying to squeeze in getting the garden planted, plus getting several new landscaping beds in place. The cooking, cleaning and laundry fairies went totally AWOL at my house. We've put out an APB for them, so if you see them, tell them they are missed terribly around here.
I am thinking of something warm for dinner tonight - chicken and dumplings or chili, while we enjoy what I really hope is the last of the late spring cool temps. I'm keeping one eye on the veg garden this morning - it's in a low-lying spot that could get nipped by frost. Fortunately I have plenty of tomatoes and peppers I could replant if necessary.
Gosh, I wish I could grow all of those. Growing up in Vermont we had all the fresh apples we wanted. Here in Phoenix we can grow Anna's and one or two others, can't remember the name right now. Water needs are too heavy for me, my trees are indigenous types with the veggie gardens getting most of the watering.
The pizza last night was awesome! The crust was an olive oil bread dough recipe from the 5-min bread book, topped with kalmata olives, mozz cheese, a few shrooms and sliced red onion, parm and fresh oregano on top. Too yummy for words.
Susan, I'm going to try that sweet potato/black bean salad. Sounds good.
Celene, I've heard that Johnny Appleseed planted lots of apples from seeds. Those generally didn't make good eating apples but were good for hard cider. They say he was merely propagating hard cider in his travels, not apples!
I like hard cider well enough, but you'd need a nuclear cider press to get juice out of these hard little insipid apples. They're kinda variable, since they're grown from seed, some have very dry but sour flesh, like a very unripe Granny Smith, those are the best of the bunch, sadly. Even the horses wouldn't eat 'em. lol
Darius - Nice variety on the apples. The only one I've heard of is the Arkansas Black. Are they all heirloom apples?
Interesting story on Johnnie Appleseed. Looks like the stories left out a few facts. So do the apples survive the winter well also?
Laurel - What's your crepe recipe? I'm always trying to find new and easy things to cook for breakfast.
Sweet potates and black beans
For roasted part, cook the following at 400 degres for 35-40 minutes:
4 sweet potatoes pealed and cut in one inch cubes
1 1/2 cp of cubed red onions
red pepper flakes
For non-cooked part:
1 diced red pepper
2 cans of black beans
1 cup chopped cilantros
After roasting, let the veggies cool a little then toss with the non-cooked ingrediences, add the amount of black pepper and verjus that you want. I'm guessiing I used a 1/4 of a cup of verjus.
I like chard; in the fall it's the last thing growing in the garden, and it's very welcome then. I cook it sometimes with olive oil and garlic as a side dish, or it's a good addition to soups or stews, too.
Susan, thanks for the recipe. It's printed out and saved in the Recipe folder.
Darius, I'm saving my one Groasis box for trees I will plant this fall as part of our electric company's tree program. We get three trees if we plant them within so many feet of a west or east facing wall of the residence. They must be low water trees, apples are not and I think I need two apple trees to get apples. Maybe another year - I'd like to do it but have too much else going on at the moment. Our mutual friend has apple and peach trees in her [much smaller than mine] backyard.
Drop by anytime and I'll make you one of those pizza's Darius!!
I got 2 of the Groasis Waterboxx's but have 3 trees that could use them. Decisions, decisions. I wish I could have bought my own case lot of them, or at least have gotten 3 from Jayne. Maybe next year, when my apple grafts should be ready to set out.
Darius, it sounds like you got some really great apples, especially the Pippin. That one is not easy to grow though. I had a small one years ago that struggled and then disappeared.
Susan, I'm at Maypop and most anything recipe related is in Atlanta. I have always used Julia Child's crepe recipe and will try to remember to look it up when we return. Here at Maypop my cookbooks have titles like "Unmentionable Cuisine" and "Southern Cooking" by Mrs. S.R. Dull. I collect old Farm Journal cookbooks and other recipe book curiosities. Thanks for sharing your yummy dinner recipes.
Terry, you're excused from going AWOL during garden season (but don't put it on the fairies lack of ). Know that like the tooth fairy, there are no fairies to pick up the slack.
We love chard though SO had to get used to it. He describes it as "rich". I think it needs special handling to be at it's best. It blanches and freezes well for later use in stews or thick soups. Its bold flavor seems better suited to that than a lighter soup or just steaming and adding butter. It's great with cannelloni beans and fantastic sauteed in garlic and oil and tossed with toasted pine nuts and plumped currents or raisins. A little grating of Pecorino or Parm over that please. I've grown rainbow chard several times and will not again. IMO, the flavor is not there and the texture is inferior to the broader leaved succulent types like Fordhook or the Italian varieties.
It's cold in the mountains. We are using up firewood these last few nights which is saving us from having to schlepp it back to the shed. Ashes are lighter. :) I have made more soup. This time a veggie soup with giant rigatoni, cold stored garden turnips and carrots, canned garden green beans and tomatoes, fresh garden parsley and collards. There's still steak left. We stretch meat. I'm making steak and cheese wraps in spinach tortillas to go with the soup.
Laurel - I'm glad to hear that there are other varieties outt here that taste better than the rainbow chard. We grew the rainbow chard and let the woodchucks have it. Tells you how much we liked it. :-)
I'll have to look for the FordHook and see what it looks like. What Italian varieties do you like?
I've lost track of when the wedding is so forgive me if ask a how's the wedding planning going if it's already past. BTW - A number of my KC dance freinds were in Knoxville at a dance weekend recently. They had a very good time.
Terry - Forgot to say welcome back from being busy with planting.
Dinner is pot roast, carrots, onions, and left over sweet potato salad. DH almost said "yum" over the phone. He didn't but I got the general drift of approval anyway.
I've been on a pretty much unprecedented cooking spree just lately, so I thought I would play along.
Tonight I had mixed greens (collard, turnip, mustard, kale, etc) slow simmered in the crock pot with pork chops, garlic, onions, cayenne pepper, sugar, and chicken broth. I also had left overs from yesterday's corn pudding.
Luckily, I love leftovers (most things taste better the next day and no cooking), so I just cook a huge pot of whatever, eat a serving or two, and then put the rest in the fridge in single serving containers to enjoy over the next few days (or freeze). Unless I totally hate it, I eat it, sometimes adding additional ingredients to change it up a bit. If I like something, I don't mind having it for lunch and dinner and then again the next day as will be the case with those [yummy] greens.
I just put a pork loin in the fridge to marinate for dinner tomorrow - along with left over greens and corn pudding.
You forgot to mention yummy greens for breakfast. I really love them! If a batch is especially good I wake up wanting a bowl to start the day. A hunk of cornbread is nice but not required. Sometimes I need a second bowl to make sure they were as good as I thought.
SO went out and picked wintered-over collards to through in the soup pot. They were delish even though they are flowering. I've never had them with catsup. Are you saying you've got jalapenos ready to pick, Larkie? Wow, what a difference a few miles makes.
What??? No fairies? You gotta be kidding! When I think of all the time I wasted trying to find them and keep them on task...sigh.
The cooler temps have the benefit of keeping me indoors and cooking. We had pasta e fagioli and some fairly decent garlic breadsticks for dinner tonight. Tomorrow will probably be another stick-to-your-ribs meal.
And then it's back to another few days of marathon planting. I brought home a boat-load of plants from my excursion on Saturday. (Literally and figuratively - my "Bertha" is an Armada and her back-end was pretty well stuffed with plants.)
ROTF, MaypopLaurel, I love greens and like you I can't resist a really good batch. I'll eat them for breakfast, lunch, and dinner - and a snack, all in the same day. I was afraid to add breakfast to my list. Figured no one would understand. I had to chuckle when I read your reply. Once when I had really good greens left over in the fridge, I decided for some reason to fix something else, a sandwich, to take to work for lunch. When lunch time rolled around, all I could think of was those awesome greens at home in the fridge. All afternoon, I kept thinking about those yummy greens and how I was going to get a bowl of them when I got home. I even left work early that day to get home and get some of those greens. I thought I was the only one who enjoyed really good greens that much though.
Also, I like fresh pork (like the pork chops I had yesterday) cooked in my greens. I know most people cook them with ham or bacon or other smoked meat. Some even use smoked turkey legs, but always smoked. I'm sure I would like them with ham, but I would miss the wonderful flavor the greens impart to the fresh pork. My Grandmother cooked them that way, usually with less expensive cuts of fresh pork. I learned to enjoy not only the greens but also eating the pork from the greens. Now that I'm older, both the greens and the pork have become a sort of comfort food for me. I don't just put the pork in to flavor the greens. Sometimes I put the greens in to flavor the pork.
I haven't tried greens with ketchup either, Larkie. I have had them with tomatoes though, and that tastes good. I'm having some difficulty imagining them with ketchup, but that is probably good, too. Greens are good so many ways. I've had kale wilted on top of a pot of black eyed peas with chopped cayenne pepper on top of it all, and that was very good. I also tried a recipe for gumbo made with collards, okra, and red beans. I thought it sounded horrible, but it was so good I made a 2nd pot of it the next week. It's hard to have 'bad' greens no matter what you cook with them.
Laurel and DreamofSpring...how do you fix these greens? It's hard for me to get my head around greens bubbling with a pork roast in a slow cooker for hours. All I can see is a wilted, soggy mass. What am I missing here?
Not greens with pork roast. Sorry, I have confused you. Yesterday I cooked greens with pork chops, 3 chops in a large pot of greens. I'm marinating a pork loin roast right now to cook either tonight or tomorrow, depending on how long I marinate it. The pork loin will NOT be cooked with greens.
The vast majority of people cook greens with some form of smoked meat: ham, bacon, ham hocks, smoked turkey leg, etc. The purpose of the meat is to season the greens. (It's a southern thing but really makes the greens taste yummy.) It's important to note that I am in the extreme minority in cooking my greens with fresh pork (pork chops). I do this because my grandmother cooked hers with fresh pork (usually bones with minimal meat not pork chops like I do). As a kid, I learned to enjoy eating the bits of meat from her greens, the bits of fresh pork flavored with greens. I'm not sure it is something most people would like. I think to me it's a comfort food, reminiscent of earlier days.
My favorite is collards although last night I had mixed greens. When cooking greens the southern way we don't just wilt them, we cook them for a relatively long time, especially collards which tend to be a bit tough and strong flavored. I cook them all day in the crock pot to soften them. I use the crock pot because I don't want to spend hours in or near the kitchen keeping watch over a simmering pot. When cooked this way, whether using ham or pork chops, the meat usually ends up 'falling off the bone' tender, such that it breaks up becoming somewhat distributed in the greens. I guess you could think of it a bit like a soup, since you have chopped or torn greens, the juice, colloquially known as 'pot liquor', and the bits or pieces of meat. (about potliquor: http://heavenlyheartburn.wordpress.com/2006/03/28/potliquor/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Collard_liquor)
Bottom line, the pork chops do not (nor are they expected to) remain whole and intact like broiled pork chops. They break up into more or less bite size pieces of lean pork distributed in the greens. I LOVE the flavor the greens impart to the pork, but I'm guess this is largely because I grew up eating it this way. My grandmother also sweetened her greens with sugar (as do I), so the pork is infused with a concoction of [bitter] greens, sugar, salt or chicken broth, and cayenne pepper. (I add the chopped cayenne pepper or crushed red pepper flakes to mine. Grandma didn't do this.) The pork pieces are mixed in with the greens. I eat them together in a single dish or bowl, sometimes picking up a forkful of both together sometimes separately.
A year or so ago, one of the writers wrote a very good article on cooking greens the southern way. The article mentions ham, ham hocks, and other commonly used meats. It doesn't mention fresh pork (like pork chops) as that is a very rare addition to greens. I've only been able to find one recipe on the internet that uses fresh pork. If you are interested in trying greens done the southern way, I would recommend reading the article (in article archives) as it covers most of the various things people usually add. You should probably try ham as an additive 1st before even considering fresh pork. The cooking method is pretty much the same regardless. Put everything in a pot and simmer until the greens are tender enough for your taste. I use: greens, meat, sugar, salt and/or chicken both, chopped onion & garlic (if available), and red pepper flakes (added at the end). There are no exact proportions, just 'to taste'. I add a handful of sugar at the beginning and then add more when done if needed (taste liquid). That's about it.
If you didn't grow up eating greens (in the south), I applaud your interest in possibly trying them. As you can tell, to most of us greens are a much beloved treat, a comfort food. I enjoy 'regular', non southern foods, too, along with foods from countless other countries and cultures (love anything 'southwest', btw), but I have retained a special love of a few such favorites reminiscent of my childhood. I don't do a lot of cooking, but when I want these things, I have to cook them. You can't buy good country/southern cooking anywhere. You have to make it yourself.
For the pork loin roast - I'm trying a new recipe for pulled pork, another southern favorite. BBQ is very much a regional thing in the south. Whereas many areas BBQ beef, in SC BBQ means pork, usually pulled pork served with a tangy sauce on the side made with mustard, vinegar, sugar, and spices. That's how I'm planning to do this pork loin. I have another loin in the freezer (they were a 2 for 1 deal). I plan to cook that one like my favorite aunt used to do, cut slits in the thin layer of fat (on top) and stuff slits with chopped green onions, herbs, garlic, and cayenne peppers, then roast in oven until done. Bon Appetit!
Now I'm going to the kitchen to try to make biscuits. I have never managed to do this right. Always end up making bricks instead, but I'm in the mood to make all my old favorites, so have to try again. Wish me luck. (Anyone need some bricks - for maybe a garden path?)
It's not surefire, but my "trick" for biscuits is to go light on the kneading (no more than a few gentle flips and flops; just enough to create some layering.) And I almost always use half unsalted butter and half shortening for whatever shortening the biscuit recipe calls for.
Have you ever eaten pea shoots? My farmer's market friend had a fresh-picked peck of them this afternoon and gave me a small bag of them. They are delicious! They taste like peas, which I don't grow. I do like the taste of peas, just not the texture.
They will go in my salad of just-picked mixed greens tonight!
Aren't pea shoots the little curly cue thingies that are on the pea vines? Not a sprout for sure.
I'm living in a hotel for the week. I have just stopped at a super market on the way home and picked up a salad bowl or frozen dinner. Tomorrow I'll go out for dinner with a colleague. Thank goodness the hotel has a microwave & refrigerator. But I do miss my healthy cooking at home.
When I used to travel a lot I'd grab a Safeway rotisserie chicken, some salad greens, some russet potatoes. You can do a lot with rotisserie (sp?) chickens and a mini fridge.
We finished up the rest of the homemade pizza last night with some salad. Tonight will be a stir fry with summer squashes and 5 min olive oil dough turned into foccacia bread. I almost like the foccacia bread better than a loaf.
DreamofSpring - thanks for all that detail, it's very interesting. Being a northern girl, Vermont, some of my favorites would make a southerner's tongue curl. How about klatskies? Cottage cheese, butter, flour dumplings cooked in milk eaten withlots of butter and sour cream. Then there's macaroni stuffing for turkey at Thanksgiving (elbow macaroni). I'll probably give the greens a pass but I appreciate your taking the time to explain it so well.
Terry - Thank you very much for the biscuit tips. That was apparently what I had been doing wrong. I handled the dough as little as possible, folding it only 3 times, and the biscuits came out light and fluffy for the 1st time ever. I ate 2 on the spot as soon as they came out of the oven. Just couldn't believe I had finally made biscuits. Years ago I pretty much accepted that I would probably never be able to make them. All of my other biscuits have been like small rocks.
I didn't try the 1/2 butter, 1/2 crisco/lard thing this time, but I will definitely try that next time. I'm going to try some other recipes (got a good one you care to share?) to find the best one. The one from Emeril uses 1/2 butter, 1/2 crisco like you suggested. I'm going to try that one next.
Thanks again! (Any tips for frying things and having them come out crispy, not greasy? That's the other thing I can't do right, and I love fried squash, zucchini, & eggplant.)
darius - I didn't know what pea shoots were either, so glad you expounded on that. The pics were most helpful. Good to know that part of the plant is also edible. I love peas, but I tend to eat them all raw. Fresh peas are hard to find in this area.
MaryMcP - Your list of Vermont favorites was precious. Good to know that we southerners are the only ones with some unique eating habits. I guess probably every region has some of those down home, regional specialties that just don't get published to the rest of the world. I guess I'll give you a pass on the greens, if you will let me slide on the macaroni turkey thing.
Well, my timing is way off - did I mention I don't usually cook - but other than being officially done around 4AM this morning (no, I didn't get up and deal with it, just left it cooking until later), the pulled pork (loin) turned out awesome. It had been brined for 24hrs in a mix of apple cider vinegar, water, and salt, then topped with ground mustard, cumin, chilli powder, and brown sugar, cooked for 8hrs (plus a couple more since I wasn't about to get up at 4AM), and then shredded with a fork. The result was very good. A tiny bit sweet, a tiny bit tangy, nicely seasoned, very low fat, super tender. Yum.
This was a new recipe and the best I've made yet. The best I've tasted anywhere, except for good, old-fashioned, pit cooked, and hardwood smoked pork, but it's a huge ordeal to do it that way. My BIL does the pit thing every year on new years. They sit up all night partying and watching over the BBQ. The result is fabulous. But this was very good and a lot less work.
I'm going very very retro tonight: puff bowl with tuna salad. I haven't done a puff bowl in more years than I'm willing to confess to. Middle son hates tuna fish (well, he hates mayo), so I'll make him a few tuna patties.
It's kind of like a bread bowl? You boil water and butter, whisk in flour, eggs and a bit of caraway seed, to make a batter. Pour it into a greased shallow pie plate or pan and bake it at 400 for 45 minutes or so. It puffs up, then sinks in the middle when it cools, which you fill with something - often a creamy warm meat dish or in this case, cool and creamy :-)
That does sound yummy - the puff bowl thingy. While researching how to clean and then season old cast iron I found a recipe for pop ups (pop overs?). You need this old time pop up maker, which is cast iron, and the right dough and it makes these light, airy pop ups to fill with delectable delicacies. I'm going to revisit that site.
DOS, my mother was Lithuanian and I suspect the klatskie recipe came from there. Dunno about the mac stuffing but that stuff was darn straight real good. Lots of giblets simmered in lots of butter. Butter and salt were her flavorings it seems.
What's with the mayo aversion? I've told DH, it has NO flavor, it adds moisture and takes on the flavors in the rest of the recipe. He will not touch anything with a drop of mayo - - - if he knows. heh heh...
Yes, Mary - that's what I was trying to think of. They are like a big, family-size pop-over :-)
The mayo thing. I don't know..two of my kdis eat it; one does not. The one that doesn't I I have sympathy for...I wasn't much of a mayo eater growing up. I have always liked it in tuna/chicken/potato/pasta salads but just not so much on sandwiches. It grew on me in adulthood...maybe it will for him, too.
I've been perusing recipes lately, since I've been in what will surely be a short term cooking mood. I saw a popover recipe somewhere. I read it, being curious. I don't think it required any special equipment. If I find it again, I'll post a link. The puff bowl and pop over thing sounds tasty and a bit elegant, but considering I have just managed my 1st edible biscuits, I'm going to wait a while before I try to make such magic with mere flour and other common ingredients.
Frankly, I wish I could trade places with the guys who are so intolerant of mayo. I like it too much. An aversion to it seems much healthier.
MaryMcP -- While those things don't sound so good to me, I can imagine they are probably very good just as with greens, grits, and other southern favorites which usually sound awful to others. A good cook can make almost anything taste good with enough butter and salt - or bacon grease and sugar.
Yeah, that's funny. I have a potluck dish that's always a hit: hashbrowns, sour cream, cheese and butter - how can you go wrong?? Okay sure, I'll post it. :-))
Lois Knoer's Hash brown Potato Casserole
aka : Leave No Potato Crumb Behind
Absolutely the BEST pot luck dish ever! Really.
2 lb bag of frozen hash browns (cubed style w/peppers) [thaw before cooking]
½ cup of melted butter
1 teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon pepper
½ cup finely chopped onion
1 pint sour cream
10 ounces grated sharp cheddar cheese
1 can cream of chicken (or mushroom) soup
Diced jalepeno or serrano (I use 2 serrano’s)
Coooked chicken or turkey meat
One can chopped green chiles
Mix all ingredients together and place in a 13x9x2 pan – no need to grease the pan
We've given up eating food in favor of growing it. Another back breaking day in the garden. It's coming long. I've tried to catch up here. You are all whipping up delicious dinners while I'm thinking of fast one dish meals, a hot shower and some Tylenol. I'm only able to get a couple of pages of reading on William Kennedy's "The Ink Truck" each night. When we were talking books a while back "The Help" was brought up. I picked it up again and read it as well as "Salt" and reread "Jane Eyre".
Darius, I posted at least a year ago about sowing peas thickly to make use of the thinned sprouts. They are wonderful in many ways. I grew up eating them in wonton soup.
I'm making chicken salad hoagies with the works (tomatoes, lettuce and home peppers and pickles) for dinner.
Pass the Tylenol, would ya? I set out all my haul from Saturday's trip to Jackson (except the stuff going in containers), so a few dozen (cough) perennials and shrubs, along with carrots and radishes and onions and strawberries into the veg garden. Transplanted the chard and fennel that were still valiantly hanging on to life in my elevated beds from last year. Watered everything, just to be sure it will rain.
Swimmer girl came home from school with a fever and that clammy look on her face that said she's caught a nasty bug..I'm hoping it's not the flu. I'm debating on dinner, since it looks like I will be dining late or alone, and this isn't a dish that really holds well for stragglers. I might be settling settle for something quick tonight, and take another stab at it tomorrow night.
I'll gladly share the Tylenol, Terry. We both have the vision though maybe a hair short on youth. What kind of fennel are you growing? After several attempts at spring planted Florence fennel I planted a patch of Florence fennel last fall. It basked in the glow of cold temperatures and is bulbing up gorgeously. Sorry to hear SG is sinking. Hopefully she is not flufull and the weekend is close at hand for recovery.
I'm feeling very special tonight. SO made the chicken salad.
It's just bronze fennel. The caterpillars loved it last year, so if I can pull it back from it's rather dried-out status it should be a good garden addition for another year.
She's just kind of blech at the moment. No intestinal stuff...just the achy clammy stuff that can come with a variety of bugs. But she really can't afford to be sick - she's about used up her sick days this year. (The fallout of mono two summers ago; if there's a bug on the breeze, she tends to catch it.)
Hope the chicken salad was delish - it's always better when somebody else cooks! I noshed on a carton of cranberry/fig Greek yogurt. Meh. A squirt of honey might have helped it but I was too lazy to tote it back down to the kitchen to doctor it up.
Sorry SG is not feeling well, give her a hug from her Nana! We finished up veggie garden beds today, planted a "garbage can" of potatoes, per the pin it post. We had record temps in the 90s the past couple days. It's supposed to cool down to somewhat more normal the next few days. Supper tonight was clean up of foods that won't fit in the low carb cycle we hope to achieve in the nearby future. We find that low carb works better when lots of fresh veggies are available, not sure how we'll fit in the container of new potatoes!!
Tammy, that makes me think of a really heart-clogging bad food I pinned the other day: pieces of hot dog sunk into cornbread muffin batter and baked. Like little corndogs. I don't remember the last time I tasted a corndog, but for some reason the recipe just reached out and pulled me in. I might plan them when I need a tailgating finger food or something to fill in on a casual buffet spread. (Definitely not a main dish kind of food :-)
Hope your travels are safe and swift, and your gardening is fun!
Only an occasional dog in this house for the humans. Usually a specific kosher brand that only DH remembers the name of and where to find it. The dog in the house also gets an occasional dog. She gets one whenever we practice her emergency retrieval system and she comes back on the emergency command.
No planting today only homework and walk with the dog.
Dinner was leftovers from last night. They were equally good tonight.
I have a pkg of Nathen's dogs in the freezer. When those are gone, I'm thinking I might not buy anymore. Aside from all the other reasons to give them up, I find them (all brands) way too salty, so much so that it ruins the taste for me. I can't taste anything for the salt. I've already given up on cold cuts for sandwiches, even turkey and chicken. They are all too salty. I'll have to carve my own, I guess. Seems like the only way to avoid all that salt.
I make sure any hot dogs I eat are nitrite free. And actually don't eat except when my one friend brings them (its called Pigs in a Blanket isn't it). But an occasional hedonistic treat won't kill me. :-) I think giving up the processed meats for whatever reason is a good think Dreams!
Dogs are a once-in-a-blue-moon treat. (Okay, I guess I do eat at least one during football season, simply because it's some sort of protein during the game.)
I grew up eating bright red franks made in the big burg of Fairbury Nebraska. Their dogs are legendary. At least in that region :-)
I'm sure they're chock-full of all the unhealthy stuff, but every once in a while...well, it's kinda like Cheetos. Every now and again I get a craving. And then several years will pass until another one hits.
The girl is better. She slept most of the day, then felt well enough to tidy her room (long overdue) and give the bathroom a lick and a promise.
I made the puff; it was as easy as I remember. (It just sounds intimidating, but it's really just boil, whisk, beat and bake.) We decided it was okay with the tuna salad, but would be better with something warm. Maybe a hot chicken salad next time? Went for a massage in the midst of a storm warning. Kept my phone at my side just in case the girl called to say the house was about to be swept up in a tornado.
No tornado, no hail, just a little lightning and even less rain. But leaving her at home will probably keep me out of contention for that Mother-of-the-Year award again this year.
I'm not saying I won't indulge in a hotdog with chilli and the works once every year or so, maybe at a ball game. Hotdogs are very rare around here, except at the game, so that limits the risk of running across one and being forced to eat it. I'm just not going to buy 'franks' by the pkg and take them home with me anymore. I figure you can safely eat almost anything if you only do so in moderation and on rare occasion - just don't take it home.
Glad to hear the daughter is doing better. A little tidying up is a very good sign.
"...just boil, whisk..." Oh, sure, that's what they said about biscuits, and it only took me a couple decades to get that right. Seriously, though, I might give that a try one day when I'm feeling particularly infallible.
Seems like I've exhausted my craving for comfort foods for the moment. Back to veggies. I love veggies. Right now I'm noshing on raw cabbage as a snack. Tomorrow I'm thinking about having crudites & hummus wrapped in tortillas.
I agree, all things in moderation. I use hot dogs for dog treats. Slice them into thin rounds and nuke for about 7 minutes. Great treats, microwaving them reduces the messiness and they break easily without crumbling. They can be frozen.
Not sure about dinner tonight, it will have to be easy as I'll be out all day. Probably bbq a chop, there's sweet corn and a potato.
My dog is a maltese. He weighs 4.5lbs. Because of his very small size, salt & fats overwhelm his system easily. Even things that don't seem salty tasting to me (like canned string beans) will cause him to drink a ton of water - and then you know what happens. Since I find hot dogs unpleasantly salty, they will surely do a number on him. I try to avoid giving him anything salty, because when he starts drinking large quantities of water trying to dilute all that salt, I fear the salinity may be harmful to his kidneys, liver, and other organs. Thus I try to only give him food that is salt free - which means products made for dogs and food that I steam for him sans salt.
Actually, seeing the dramatic effect salt has on his tiny system has helped to make me more aware of the salt in just about everything these days. In some foods like cold cuts, hot dogs, and American cheese, I can clearly taste the salt as it overpowers the flavor, but even when I can't detect the salt in a product, watching him try to drink his weight in water lets me know that it's definitely too salty regardless of taste. He's like my cold mine canary. Medium to large dogs can better handle the salt since it doesn't represent such a large percentage of their blood or body weight, but it might not be so good for them either. (Even a single bite of a hotdog will send tiny Widget (my dog) into a water drinking frenzy.
The fat isn't good for them either. My prior Maltese weighed about 10lbs (2x his size), but she still could not handle the fat content of food made for humans. One night after I shared Chinese delivery with her, I awoke the next morning to find her sitting there unable to keep her head up off the floor. She had pancreatitis requiring antibiotics, fluids (bolster injected under her skin), and special, low fat, salt free, bland food like boiled chicken and rice. Canary in the cold mine. I learned my lesson. For treats I give him small bits of freeze dried liver or healthy, home made dog biscuits.