Filed under: Breakfast, Meat&Fish, Vegetables | Comments (2)
This is what we had on New Year’s day at my house:
And it was perfect!
The holiday season is over, and as much as I heartily welcome it each year; I am always ready to bid it farewell in January. Having the holidays fall on a a Tuesday this year really messed with my head. I can only handle merriment once a week and it’s usually on the weekend. Therefore, Monday felt like Saturday, and Tuesday was Sunday for sure! And Joe’s special is the perfect food to eat on a lazy Sunday– which is why we had it on New Year’s day. (Got that?)
Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area I remember Original Joe’s, I don’t however remember Joe’s Special. Maybe that’s because when I was a kid, I didn’t like eggs. Yup, I wouldn’t eat them, especially scrambled, as they are in this dish. I am still quite [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish, Pasta | Comment (0)
Last year my dear friend moved away. And he left me booze, a lot of booze. This friend was not implying anything about my alcohol consumption, it was just that he was moving cross country. You know how grumpy police can be about traveling with open containers, especially over state lines. So when he moved, I became the owner of the remnants of his well-stocked bar.
Most of it is gone, save for the rhubarb and the orange bitters (a little goes a long way!), and a very large bottle of vodka. I am not much of a vodka drinker. If given the choice between a vodka or gin martini, the gin wins out every time. So I’ve begun to search for ways to use up my vodka. And one of the best things to cook with vodka has got to be Penne alla Vodka, essentially marinara sauce, enlivened with vodka, [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish, Sandwiches | Comments (3)
It all started with some leftover New England (split down the middle) hot dog buns from a weenie roast last week. Or maybe it was our first CSA pick-up and a small bunch of of almost chartreuse, baby dill. Correction– it could have been the radishes, straight from the ground in our small vegetable garden. But what about the green garlic that I bought at the farmers market, so bright, and simply hinting at the pungency to come? It could have been that. Or maybe at was a mixture of all of those things that led to one delicious fish sandwich.
Remember the tomato fiasco of 2009? Those tomatoes would just not ripen. Well, Brian and I are trying again; but this time we’re putting the vegetables in the ground. We have peas, arugula, some tomatoes (keep your finger crossed), and radish. [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish, Pasta, Vegetables | Comments (4)
As in the soup, because I made my own cream of mushroom– for a very specific purpose. This week I had my first tuna-noodle casserole. I did not grow up with casseroles. My dad never liked a one-pot meal, and my mom didn’t really care, so I had a childhood free of Durkee French Fried Onions. Frankly, I never liked tuna fish from a can until I was in college, so a tuna casserole was not in my culinary lexicon.
But recently my mother started making them for herself . Maybe she was finally feeling that empty-nest syndrome, or maybe she was hearkening back to her own childhood in the 1950s, filled with tuna-noodle casseroles. Either way she started to rave about them. At first I was appalled; this casserole always sounded like a train wreck to me. But then, as I started [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish, Sweets | Comments (6)
Have you ever looked through a cookbook and seen a recipe that was so bizarre, with such a unique list of ingredients, that you could not imagine what it tastes like? It recently happened to me.
I checked out the New York Times Heritage Cookbook by Jean Hewitt from the library. It is an out of print tome from the 1970s celebrating regional American cooking. While glancing through the dessert section from the Midwest, I stopped at Dymple’s Sausage Cake. If I were driving a car, I would have slammed on the brakes so hard, whiplash would have set in. Among the usual list of sugar, flour, and spices, were a few ingredients that made me stop in my tracks. Listed were: lean sausage meat, raisins, walnuts, pulverized gumdrops, and cold, strong coffee.
I read it again and again. There were no eggs, and only [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish | Comments (4)
Live Maine lobsters!
Growing up in California, eating lobster has a bit of stuffy reputation. The only restaurants that serve them are the starched white napkin sort. Served with mini forks and pokers, sometimes you are given a grown-up bib with which to eat them. But in the summers in New England, it seems you can’t drive more than a few miles without running into a seafood shack that sells lobster of all sorts– in a roll, sumptuously stewed in a bisque, steamed, or grilled. This is definitely one of the perks of living here.
We have been in Connecticut for over a year now, but I had never cooked my own lobsters. Well, that all changed this weekend. I picked up at a passel of snapping, spiky-shelled crustaceans, steamed them off in a bit of salted water, and served them up with wedges of lemon [...]
Filed under: Fruits, Meat&Fish, Vegetables | Comment (0)
Did all of you have a nice Thanksgiving? It’s hard to believe this Fall holiday has come and gone as quickly as a potato waiting to be mashed. Now, gearing up for the Christmas holidays begins. I must say, that for as excited as I get each November, I am always happy to say goodbye to my gravy boats and my roasting pans until next year. For as festive as Thanksgiving may be, it always makes me feel like I have been run over by a freight train for the few days following.
Away go the potatoes, scrape the bowl clean; the stuffing is neatly wrapped in crinkly foil; cranberry relish is nestled in Tupperware containers, waiting to dye the plastic; globs of congealing gravy go into the fridge; and the crowning achievement, the bird, is sliced and ready to be saved. Just like the shopping [...]
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Recently, I was invited to a small party. It was at a typical apartment in a college town, a house that had been sub-divided, all sharing a front door. Paint was peeling off the door jamb, and the remnants of stickers from some forgotten band, no doubt a favorite of the previous tenants, were stuck to the front windows. The door was answered, hugs exchanged, then our host led us out back. “I know it’s a little cold, but we’re taking advantage of the weather while we still can. Grab a blanket if you want one.”
The e-vite had read, “Bring a dessert, we’ll supply the wine!” I placed my pie on the table, next to the brownies supplied by one guest, a chocolate fiend no doubt, and the figs supplied by a health nut, and then I sat back down to enjoy the backyard. The [...]
Filed under: Meat&Fish | Comment (1)
I love to entertain. The days before I have a dinner party are spent ruminating over what I will serve, deciding what is at the peak of freshness, thumbing through food magazines for inspiration, furiously cleaning the apartment, and oh yes, thinking of how each of my guests will get along with one another. Though I may think long and hard, about what foods to serve, often times I resort to the same standbys. In the winter this usually means an entree that is hearty, rib-sticking, and often times braised. This way I can prepare it, and forget about it for hours, letting the oven do its work.
But in the summertime, when the weather is warm, and the produce is displaying its array of bright hues, I favor salads. But salads? Some guests may be a tad disappointed when they sit down for a [...]
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Although New York is on the Atlantic coastline, and I lived there for two years, somehow I couldn’t imagine a crustacean cruising around the major metropolis area. So I went two years without eating a lobster roll. And for anyone who grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area, like I did, the lobster roll is a thing of seafood lore, something only to be heard of and spoken about in hushed voices while picking up the latest line-caught seafood from Half Moon Bay.
But now that I have moved to Connecticut, lobster abounds in the summertime. Steamed, grilled, and of course rolled, these succulent babies are served up in a variety of different ways, at a variety of different establishments. But for my very first lobster roll, I went to Chick’s in West Haven. Chick’s is truly a relic from the past, not much has [...]