Monday, June 4, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/4-Jun-18: Day wasted dealing with a Mac problem when Calendar data was destroyed when I tried to sync the Mini with MacBair. The Apple guy couldn't figure out how to get the Calendar to accept the restored file of data, so I had to go back to a manual backup I made last Friday. Lost several days of writing, plus all my old Travel calendars. Very unhappy, totally wasted day.

Our meal was Broccoli Rice Casserole from Scratch (web), made with brown rice. This is kind of mac-and-cheese with broccoli and rice instead of macaroni. Pretty good. Strawberries and the rest of our buttermilk ice cream for dessert.

Tuesday/5-Jun-18: Indian for dinner. I made Oven-Roasted Chicken Tikka (MadeIndia, p36; cookbooker), using turkey oysters (that nice little muscle at the back of the pelvis on both sides) instead of skinless, boneless chicken thighs, of which there were none at the shop last week. I made the suggested side, Chaat Salad (MadeIndia, p192; cookbooker), which we both loved. And some plain basmati rice and some Yoghurt with Cucumber and Mint (MJ1, p162), the best raita recipe. For dessert, store-bought rice puddings topped with a sprinkle of cardamon, almost, but not quite, kheer.

Bit of a gully-washer this evening. It flooded the entry and under the stereo. Water dripping from the ceiling on the other end of the room.

Wednesday/6-Jun-18: Late meal today. I made Lighter Chicken Enchiladas, a recipe I collected from EAT-L in 2013. Made it up as a casserole, which is much easier than rolling enchiladas. Used up my tortillas. Used more turkey oysters instead of chicken. Used mimolette for the cheese, and much more than asked. So-so. Served with Mama's Spanish Rice and guacamole. We're stuffed.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/7-Jun-18: Shopping today. Another set of people on Thursdays. Funny.

Our meal was Sicilian Swordfish Stew (Braises, p85; cookbooker). The recipe was a bit off, but the result was delicious. For dessert, a nectarine and some strawberries, topped with a bit of cream.

Our raspberries are going crazy. Need to pick some tomorrow morning.

Friday/8-Jun-18: Ed finished Cath's tiling today, while I did a mountain of ironing.

Leftover broccoli-rice casserole for dinner, and a salad, followed by two store-bought rice puddings.

Saturday/9-Jun-18: Made up some Strawberry Rhubarb Quick Jam (GrainAM, p71; HandyBook) with rhubarb from the potager and strawberries from shopping that look like they won't get eaten.

Leftover strange enchiladas, Spanish rice, and guacamole for dinner. Ice cream bars for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight. Power blip shut it off, but it seems to have cooked long enough nevertheless.

Sunday/10-Jun-18: Ed had a concert today, and I no had way to get there so stayed home and did Stuff.

Dinner was Pork Chop with Rhubarb (Pomiane, p129; cookbooker). This is just pork chops with rhubarabsauce instead of applesauce. Good, though. (Rhubarb from the potager.) Served with orzo (with lemon juice and parsley) and Asparagus with Chive Blossom and Sesame (web). The asparagus with okay, but wasn't the best veggie choice with the rhubarb&pork.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3; #3 COOKBOOK: bye for June
Cookbooks of the month: bye for June
This month: #4 PASTA: bye for June; #5 BREAD: bye for June; #6 GUESTS: bye for June

Monday, May 28, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/28-May-18: Started another batch of Ratio bread.

Our dinner was a half-dose of Bobotie (200Budget, p136;  cookbooker), made up in individual casserole dishes. A bit odd, but very tasty. Followed by salad. Then some chocolate corn flake cookies.

Tuesday/29-May-18: Pizza tonight. It always takes longer than I expect, but I never remember to start earlier. And a problem with the pizza dough made it even longer. I made, more or less, Artichoke, Goat Cheese, and Olive Pizza (BoldVeg, p195; cookbooker). That's all we had.

Wednesday/30-May-18: Shopping today. Some impulse buys with sale stuff. The season for green asparagus seems to be over; still some fat white ones, but we prefer the green ones.

Dinner was Salmon with Yogurt-Curry Sauce (web); pretty good stuff. Served with polenta and peas with pearl onions.

Thursday/31-May-18: Jiggled the meal plan today and ended up with Mediterranean Shrimp Pie with Feta Crust (PotPies, p152). Not really a pot pie, but tasty. Because feta doesn't really make a satisfying crust, we sliced some bread for soppy. Then a big salad. For dessert, some locally made chocolate-dipped madeleines that were on sale this week.

Friday/1-Jun-18: Ed worked at Cath's doing some tiling today while I did stuff around the house. She fed up so he wasn't very hungry for dinner.

Which was Sriracha-Soy Sauce over Egg Noodles (VT; web; cookbooker). Used 300g of fresh tagliatelle with all the sauce. This was a good dinner for two, although Ed couldn't eat all of his, so I'll have it cold for lunch tomorrow.

Saturday/2-Jun-18: Ed did more tiling today and came home pooped. I defrosted the chest freezer, also pooped. (The leftover noodles from yesterday were good cold.)

Dinner was Thai Green Curry Pork Tenderloin (web). This was supposed to served three, but the two of us did a fine job on it. The meat and its sauce were delicious. Served with Chinese 4-Ingredient Fried Cabbage (web), which was pretty so-so. And rice. For dessert, a mixed fruit salad. We ate tastily.

Sunday/3-Jun-18: Dinner was Buttery Garlic Herb Chicken with Zucchini (web; cookbooker). Easy and very yummy. Served with Clotilde Dusoulier's Perfect Roasted Potatoes (web; HandyBook). Nice dinner, outside under the pergola, watching the rain.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH:4; #3 COOKBOOK: yes
Cookbooks of the month: BoldVeg and 200Budget for May/bye for June
This month: #4 PASTA: yes for May/bye June; #5 BREAD: yes for May/bye for June; #6 GUESTS: yes for May/bye for June

Monday, May 21, 2018

This week in the kitcchen

Monday/21-May-18: Stormy day today, with a swarm of bees, who disappeared just before the beekeeper arrived, just to make it interesting.

Our meal was Carrot-Lentil Soup with(out) Rosemary-Garlic Croutons (BoldVeg, p52). (Didn't have the oomph for the croutons, but it wasn't a big problem.) Pretty good soup. Served with Baguette Sandwiches with Asparagus (web; cookbooker). All good.

Tuesday/22-May-18: Our meal was a half recipe of Chipotle Shrimp Coleslaw (web), served over long-grain brown rice. We bought thought the coleslaw might be a bit weird, but very good. The brown rice gave a nice underlying chew to go with the crunch. I had just less than 150g of frozen cooked shrimp and was too lazy to open another package. More would have been better. Still, a tasty and enjoyable meal. Mini ice cream bars for dessert

Wednesday/23-May-18: Shopping today.

When we got home, I made some guacamole to eat with Doritos that Cath got us.

For our meal we had Fish in a Green Sauce (Foolproof, p50), made with tuna. This was yummy. The sauce was a bit runny because I added too much water. As sides there were Stir-Fried Cauliflower with Green Chilies (Foolproof, p90) and Potatoes with Cumin (Foolproof, p94). The cauliflower was good. My medium cauliflower, though, was about 1.7kg; I'm wondering where Jaffrey finds large ones weighing 450g? I used about 300g of florets, which was a bit much for the two of us. I had some nice newish potatoes, so didn't peel them. No matter. We ate generously and well.

Thursday/24-May-18: Pasta today. I made Southwestern Corn Pasta (PastaMach, p73; cookbooker). Served with Cilantro Pesto from the freezer. Pretty good stuff. Then a big salad. Then Ed made a little fruit salad (apples, strawberries, and banana) with mascarpone cream. We ate yummily.

Friday/25-May-18: Our meal today was Stir-Fried Thai Green Curry Chicken with Aubergines (HomTravels, p152), over rice. This was quite tasty. I used about half the meat (skinless, boneless thighs) with more or less all the sauce. Fast if you don't count roasting the eggplant, which you can do ahead. Ice cream for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight

Saturday/26-May-18: Stormy day today. Many electric outages. There was an outage of several second which turned the stove clock off. When stove clock isn’t set the ovens don't work. Oops.

I started a loaf of bread based on Ratio. I'd typed out the recipe, but managed to get the ingredients not in order of use, so ended up with too little salt, and almost too much yeast. (That's when I realized something was wrong.) The yeast seems to be working at least a bit in the loaf-to-be. The bread is in the fridge overnight to be baked tomorrow. Think my yeast is on its last legs. There is a bit of activity in the bread, but I couldn’t get much proofing action in. Will toss it.

Our dinner was Spicy Pork Rolls with Minted Yogurt (200Budget, p130; cookbooker). This was super yummy with turkey scallops, rather than pork, and no minted yogurt. We're a bit short on veg this week, but I found this easy and delicious recipe for Roasted Thai Curry Cauliflower (web). And then there was rice. We ate well. Even though we've had Thai two nights in a row.

Sunday/27-May-18: Finished off the Ratio bread. Pretty darn good stuff.

More storms this afternoon.

Our meal was Ten-Minute Asparagus and Brown Rice (web). Nothing 10-minute about it if you make your own brown rice. I liked this; Ed didn't. Oh well.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 5; #3 COOKBOOK: yes
Cookbooks of the month: BoldVeg and 200Budget
This month: #4 PASTA: yes; #5 BREAD: yes; #6 GUESTS: yes

Monday, May 14, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/14-May-18: For tonight's meal we had Sweet-and-Sour Cabbage with Peanut Sauce (BoldVeg, p135; cookbooker) with Red and Green Polenta (BoldVeg, p176; cookbooker) as suggested. The cabbage was an interesting dish, a little weird at first, but grew on you. Mini ice cream bars for dessert.

Tuesday/15-May-18: Worked on the meal plan (and list) today, trying to use up as many of the veggies in the fridge as possible.

For our meal, we had Pasta with Asparagus-Lemon Sauce (web). This was quite good. I made all the sauce with half the pasta. The pasta (malfada) was generously sauced, but not excessive. Following some of the comments, I used the zest of a whole lemon and added the juice to the sauce, and I roasted the tips with a minced shallot and garlic cloves. Very tasty. Served with a made-up salad of grated carrot, cuke that was quartered and finely sliced, radish, and a bit of onion, all with a lemon vinaigrette. Quite good it was. Some goat cheese for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Wednesday/16-May-18: Shopping today.

When we got home, to use up some of the buttermilk, I made Buttermilk Coffeecake (TLSouth, p119).

Our dinner was Salmon with Lime Courgettes (200Budget, p178). The salmon was ok, but the zucchini was very good fun, cut in long thin strips, sautéed, and tossed with lime zest, juice, and chopped mint. Served with orzo. The coffeecake for dessert was a hit.

Thursday/17-May-18: Breakfast for dinner today. I made Ned and Crescent's Favorite Multigrain Pancakes (Gospels, p205)—a whole dose and then froze half for another meal. Served with some of the chamomile syrup from Saturday.

Friday/18-May-18: Busy afternoon cooking:
  • Made some Favas and Pearl Onions with Olives and Herbs (VegA2Z, p66). Favas from the store this week; pearl onions left from last week. This recipe has in interesting way to treat the onions. You pour boiling water over them, then cut off the bottom and peel. (I only cut off the top if it was "ugly.") Peeling is much easier this way—hooray! The favas were cooked (steam-sautéed) without peeling the individual beans. I added extra olives because I thought the dshes needed them; Ed thought it was too much. This was an okay dish. Think I prefer my favas peeled and bright green. 
  • Mama's Garlic Coleslaw (MC; HandyBook). 
  • Baked Potatoes on the Grill (MC), but cooked in the toaster oven. Two smallish potatoes for the two of us. I found it way too much. 
  • Craig Claiborne's Ultimate Hamburger (Tabasco, p88). Still a good way to do a hamburger.
For dessert, we finished off the Buttermilk Coffeecake. Yum.

Yogurt on overnight.

Saturday/19-May-18: We went to Gamm Vert today and bought some plants, geraniums, three hanging pots, etc. For our meal, I marinated two kip filets as in Chile-Soaked Grilled Chicken (BigFlav, p180), without the accompanying the Indonesian Catsup, that we didn't think was needed last time I made this. The chicken was good. Served with asparagus, simply grilled with salt and pepper, and penne of red lentils and carrots. Then a salad of romaine lettuce. Then some Buttermilk Ice Cream (MC), kind of tan colored because I used sucre de canne, rather than white sugar.

Sunday/20-May-18: We lunched at La Bellone today, before going to Chalais for a concert. Nothing happened in the kitchen.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 4; #3 COOKBOOK: yes
Cookbooks of the month: BoldVeg and 200Budget
This month: #4 PASTA: no; #5 BREAD: no; #6 GUESTS: yes

Monday, May 7, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/7-May-18: Our meal today was Prawn & Crab Cakes with Chilli Jam (200Budget, p182; cookbooker). For a veggie side I made some Stir-Fried Mixed Vegetables (ThaiCC, p80). And some plain rice. Pretty good meal. For dessert we had more of the Chocolate-Glazed Banana Cake. Yum.

Tuesday/8-May-18: Our meal was Rosemary-Flavored Chickpea and Spinach Soup (WorldVeg, p598; cookbooker). Finished off the Chocolate-Glazed Banana Cake.

Wednesday/9-May-18: Shopping today.

Our meal was Fish Kebabs & Spring Onion Mash (200Budget, p174). The kebabs were good, and the smashed potatoes with crème fraîche, chopped cilantro and red chili, and spring onions were a treat. Some roasted asparagus on the side. For dessert, some store-bought rice puddings.

Cookcooks: I've done two recipes from 200Budget, but there will be none from BoldVeg. We're outing three times in the next days, with company on the remaining days.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/10-May-18: We ate at a local Sanglier à Broche repas today. We're stuffed. Nothing happened in the kitchen.

Friday/11-May-18: Chopped up lots of vegetables for Marinated Vegetables à la Greque (VegFeasst, p76; cookbooker) and put them on to marinate.

For dinner, we had hamburgers at the bar where No Direction was playing their last gig with Albie. Nothing further happened in the kitchen,

Saturday/12-May-18: Cath and Hannah for dinner. We started with the Marinated Greek Vegetables. These were good. Served with some sliced baguette to soppy up the marinade. For our main, there was Asparagus-Ricotta Phyllo Tart (VT/may08; web; cookbooker). Put a bit of lightly dressed mâche with some cherry tomatoes on the plate. Dessert was Pears in Chamomile Syrup (O&C, p553; cookbooker). Everything was yummy.

Took the extra baguette and the last bit of tart to Vanessa.

Yogurt on overnight.

Sunday/13-May-18: I had some of the marinated vegetables over a bit of mâche for lunch. Pizza after Ed's concert. Nothing further happened in the kitchen.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3; #3 COOKBOOK: yes
Cookbooks of the month: BoldVeg and 200Budget
This month: #4 PASTA: no; #5 BREAD: no; #6 GUESTS: yes

Monday, April 30, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/30-Apr-18: Our meal today was Barbecued Poussins with Za'atar and Roast Pumpkin Houmous (BirdHand, p160). Well, sort of. I used one coquelet for a half recipe, rather than two poussins, and grilled under the broiler. There was no pumpkin or other winter squash in the shop last week, so I smerged a couple of on-line recipes for plain chickpea hummus, which turned out pretty good. And roast asparagus. We ate well.

Made the meal plan (and list!) for next week this afternoon. Planned on using BoldVeg for May's cookbook, but noticed I also had a number of recipes for 200Budget planned. Decided I'll try to use both throughout the month. We'll see.

Tuesday/1-May-18: Looks like BookChatters is moving to the first Tuesday. This month and next month moved just because, but it turns out to be easier for our meeting locale if we stay on the first Tuesday. Meeting today caught me a bit off-stride, since it was the first day of the month.

Our meal was Slow-Cooked Lamb and Spinach Curry (MadeIndia, p107), which was quite yummy. Easy to make, but does take quite some time, most of it unattended. Served with Caramelized Onions and Jeera Rice (MadeIndia, p155). Ice cream bars for after.

Wednesday/2-May-18: Out meal was Chickpea Dumplings in Sweet Potato Gravy (web), served over brown rice. Fairly so-so. Didn't use vegetable suet (sounds horrible) for the dumplings, but yogurt, water, and a small slog of oil.

Thursday/3-May-18: Shopping today.

Soup and sandwiches for dinner. The soup was Salmon Soup with Tomato, Dill, and Garlic (CL/may16; web). Ed liked this, I didn't especially. There was no reason to "brown" the salmon in a skillet before cooking in the soup. Interesting that the recipe used water and fish sauce for the broth rather than fish stock. It was edible, but no a do-me-agai. The sandwiches were, sort of, Creamy Avocado/Guacamole Egg Salad Sandwiches (web), These were okay. Some millefeuilles from the boulangerie for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/4-May-18: Our meal today was Rice Noodles with Lemon Chicken (200Budget, p144; cookbooker). This was easy and quite tasty. Some store-bought, packaged brownies for dessert.

Saturday/5-May-18: Today I made Italian Herb Baked Meatballs (web). I used 500g of ground beef (a big pound), made 20 meatballs, and froze half for a later meal. I used tomato paste instead of marinara and frozen chopped basil. For a sauce, there was Tomato and Red Wine Sauce from the freezer, topped up with the last of my accidental tomato paste (which probably wasn't needed). As a side there was Thyme-Garlic Roasted Asparagus (CL/jun07; web). Mini ice cream bars for after.

Sunday/6-May-18: Our meal was Thai Tortellini (BoldVeg, p189). Thai/Italian, an odd combination, but it worked. The recipe asked 1/2-3/4 Thai yellow curry paste. This is way to little; that amount was almost tasteless. When I added the coconut milk, I added another long tablespoon of curry paste to bring up the flavor. Kirchner suggests serving with steamed carrots, so I did, but I think a salad sort of thing would have been better. For dessert, there was Chocolate-Glazed Banana Cake (BoldVeg, p242; cookbooker), as suggested. Definitely edible, this.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 3; #3 COOKBOOK: yes for April, yes for May
Cookbooks of the month: BirdHand for April, BoldVeg and 200Budget for May
This month: #4 PASTA: no for April, no for May; #5 BREAD: no for April, no for May; #6 GUESTS: yes for April, no for May

Monday, April 23, 2018

This week in the kitchen

Monday/23-Apr-18: Well, it was supposed to be a pasta-making day, but I just didn't feel like it. So we had tagliatelle from the freezer, to make a 3/4-ish version of Pici ai Fegatini di Pollo e Radicchio—Pici with Chicken Livers and Radicchio (Lorenza, p130; cookbooker). Served with a big salad.

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/24-Apr-18: Our meal was about a third recipe of Lapin à la Moutarde (SaveurFR, p197), accompanied by steamed broccoli and buckwheat crozets. Nice tastes.

Wednesday/25-Apr-18: Oops, forgot my camera today. For our meal, we had a halfish recipe of Chicken Messina (BirdHand, p113), kind of a poor-man's (or lazy cook's) version of vitello tonnato. Very good it was, nicely poached chicken with a tasty sauce. Served with North African Zucchini or Squash Salad (MedHot2, p87), wherein I forgot to add the chopped mint, and Moroccan couscous. Tasty eating all around.

Thursday/26-Apr-18: Shopping today. I noticed some "vegetable" pasta shapes and bought a couple—some fusilli of chickpeas and corn and some fusilli of red lentils and carrots. We'll see how those are.

Our meal was Cod Steaks in Yogurt (MJInvite, p122), which was good enough, but not a favorite. Served with Rice and Peas with Garam Masala (SpiceKitch, p65) and Salaad (MJ@Home, p235). These both tasty. Some Häagen Dasz ice cream cups for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/27-Apr-18: Lunch at Cath's today. Nothing happened in the kitchen.

Saturday/28-Apr-18: Our meal was Chile-Crusted Scallops with Cucumber Salad (web), which was pretty good. The cuke salad was good on its own (more lemon juice, less olive oil than asked) and extra good with the scallops mixed in. Unfortunately the chiles started Ed off on a coughing jag. Served with some of the chickpea fusilli dressed with olive oil, butter, and black pepper. This was quite good.

Yesterday I found the recipe for Soupe Épicée au Chocolat (VPG; web) stuck in a book; made a half recipe for tonight's meal. I used 100g of 85% chocolate and 50g or 70% chocolate. Melted these in my double boiler. The cream is infused with cardamom pods, a star anise, cinnamon stick, a clove, and some freshly ground pepper. That's strained into the melted chocolate. Pretty tasty.

Sunday/29-Apr-18: Again, it was supposed to be fresh pasta today, but I didn't feel like it, or like I had the time. Used boxed pasta to make Linguine with Lemon, Garlic, and Thyme Mushrooms (at Food52: web; at Nigella's site: web). Good and easy. I've made this before, in June-2014, but collected it again. Worthy of a repeat. Served with roasted asparagus and a big salad. Some of the chocolate "soup," now solidified, with strawberries and cream, which didn't go at all.

Coquelet on to marinate for tomorrow's meal.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3; #3 COOKBOOK: yes
Cookbooks of the month: BirdHand
This month: #4 PASTA: no; #5 BREAD: no; #6 GUESTS: yes