Monday, June 19, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/19-Jun-17: Still no news of Pogo. :-( And another excruciatingly hot day.

An earlyish meal. I completed my round of pressure cooker recipes in Madhur Jaffrey's Quick and Easy Indian Cooking with Pork or Lamb Vindaloo (Q&E, p33), using pork today since we had lamb a few days ago. I've made this recipe a number of times, with and without the pressure cooker. The pressure cooker gives wonderful meat, but I do miss the enticing cooking smell. Served with plain basmati rice and Pan-Griled Zucchini (MJ@Home, p173), another old favorite. For nibbles, I made Seasoned Radishes (MJ@Home, p6), but I seem to be the only one who likes them. A shame. Ed bought some chocolate custards for dessert when he went to get milk and bread. Not bad.

Tuesday/20-Jun-17: Lunched out today. Nothing happened in the kitchen. Hot hot hot.

Wednesday/21-Jun-17: Bill left today. Lunched out before catching his train. Shopped after that. Nothing much happened in the kitchen. Hot hot hot.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/22-Jun-17: Early meal today. We had a half dose of Roerbak van Pangasius met Rode en Gele Paprika (web). Didn't use panga, but lieu noir instead. Very good for how easy it was. Served over brown rice. That was all.

Friday/23-Jun-17: The horrible heat is over—hooray!

Early meal today. Made a half dose of Brown Rice Salad with Apples & Walnuts (PatSalads, p54). Easy and quite tasty, although I thought needed a bit more lemon. Mini magnums for dessert

Cooked up a pound of hominy, some for a coming meal, the rest for the freezer.

Saturday/24-Jun-17: Nothing much happened in the kitchen today. Dinner out at a cancer charity event.

Yogurt on overnight.

Sunday/25-Jun-17: This turned into use-up-leftover-bits-of-bread day. Not planned, but it happened.

I bought a batch of rhubarb shopping this week, thinking our rhubarb was about done for the year. Discovered yesterday there's plenty more still to be harvested. Started on the store-bought bit, by making some Rhubarb Bread Pudding, a recipe I got from EAT-L.

Last summer I collected recipes for Aubergines à la Bonifacienne within a few weeks of each other, from two different magazines (C&V, VPG)—two recipes, the same but different. For our meal today, I smerged these: Steamed the eggplant halves, rather than boiling (ugh). Used about 90g of dryish breads, soaked in milk. Used 200g of tomme de brebis (rather than 75g or 250g, since the package was 200g). Added two sprinkles of cayenne. Baked rather than fried. The recipes both called for 2 eggplant halves per person. This was actually quite a bit. Might be better to get bigger eggplants (mine were bio and smallish, the two were 500g; usually they're about 350g each), and serve a half per person.


Easy to make: Remove the flesh from the steamed eggplants, coarsely chop, then mix with the soaked bread (liquid squeezed out). Then stir in an egg, the grated cheese, a minced garlic clove, some chopped basil, S&P. Stuff this into the eggplant shells and bake for 30min. Pop under the broiler for 5min to brown the top. Yum.

Not sure who or where Boniface is and what the connection with stuffed eggplant is.

Then a big salad. We're stuffed.

A while later we had some Rhubarb Bread Pudding with a bit of ice cream. Good stuff.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, June 12, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/12-Jun-17: We had our main meal early, leftover chiles rellenos casserole. Still good it was. With a bit of mâche and some guacamole.

All day house cleaning, ironing, getting ready for Bill's arrival tomorrow.

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/13-Jun-17: BookChatters, then finish up cleaning. I made dinner (midst a big thunderstorm and open skylight) while Ed picked up Bill. We had Ginger, Soy and Garlic Chicken (web) from the bbq. A bit salty (too much soy sauce?) and nothing special. Chicken did have a nice texture. Served with a made-up salad of soba noodles with roasted bell peppers. This was pretty tasty, but needed a bit of salt.

Wednesday/14-Jun-17: Off to the thumb doctor this a.m., then home. Finished off the shopping list while Ed took a nap. Then lunch at Chez Steph. Followed by shopping.

Put lamb on to marinate for tomorrow's meal. Made Apricot Chutney (web), to replace the apricot chutney from the book that we didn't like.

Thursday/15-Jun-17: Early meal today. Ed barbecued Sweet Milk-Marinated Grilled Lamb with Sweet and Hot Apricot Condiment (Thrill, p151). We didn't like the Sweet and Hot Apricot Condiment last time, so I served the Apricot Chutney I made yesterday. Yummy stuff. Served with the recommended Sweet Potato Salad (Thrill, p302; cookbooker). This needed a bit of tweaking but was quite good, a nice change from potato salad.

Yogurt on overnight. Put what's probably the last of our raspberries on to macerate and prepared "broth" for ice cream.

Friday/16-Jun-17: What a day! Bathroom flooded, with plumbing apparently blocked between there and the fosse. At the time we were discovering this, the delivery man cam with the new dishwasher. The door was inadvertently left open and Pogo went walkabout. We've scoured the neighborhood, but he hasn't returned. We're hoping that since he was out without his collar (just been brushed) that he was picked up as a stray and we'll find him at the pound tomorrow. Fingers crossed.

Back to Time-Life for dinner this afternoon. We had Geschmorter Schweinsbraten mit Kapern—Braised Pork Roast with Paprika, Capers and Caraway (TLVienna, p38). I cooked the meat a bit long, spending time looking for Pogo, so it was a bit too done, but the sauce was yummy. Served with potatoes boiled in their jackets and peas&shallots.


For dessert with has some raspberry ice cream, again made with the mascarpone cream. Yum.

Saturday/17-Jun-17: Pogo still hasn't returned. We visited the fourrière, hoping to find him there, but no luck. Have papered the area with flyers now.

Nice dinner. Made Harissa Chicken with Leeks, Potatoes, and Yogurt (web). Had slightly over a kilo of thighs, so upped everything that much. Really yummy and easy. Some lemon tarts from the boulangerie in La Rochefoucauld for dessert.

Sunday/18-Jun-17: Still no Pogo.

We're not overly happy with the new dishwasher. The usability part is ok, but the baskets feel unsturdy and they don't stay on their tracks very well. And the top drawer for silverware, which I loved in our old machine, is difficult to fill. I'm sure the machine holds fewer dishes that our old one. Kind of wishing we had spent the money to replace that one exactly.

We ate out for lunch today, so nothing much happened in the kitchen.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 1
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, June 5, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/5-Jun-17: Change of plan today, since I forgot to defrost the lamb yesterday and will have that tomorrow. Ate from the freezer today instead, some yummy carrot soup. That was about it in the kitchen.

Tuesday/6-Jun-17: Dinner was Spicy Cumin Lamb Skewers (Yang Rou Chuan) (web). I didn't take the meat off the chops, but used the spice mix as a rub and cooked them under the broiler. Extra delicious. We probably ate three people's worth of meat between us. This rub would probably be good on other meats. I didn't use the oil and Shaoxing wine. Accompanied by plain rice and a half-dose of Hot and Spicy Wrinkled Beans (Chinatown, p106), which we've enjoyed before. No dessert necessary. Ed thought it would be nice to finish the bottle of wine we started. I'm a bit tipsy.

Yogurt on overnight.

Wednesday/7-Jun-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Warm & Spicy Fish Salad (PatSalads, p95), which I've made before and is still good. I used rocket/arugula/roquette instead of spinach for the salad, and probably more than they intended. For dessert I made some raspberry ice cream. Raspberries from the yard. Vanilla ice cream made with with part mascarpone cream and one part cream cream. Yummy stuff.

Thursday/8-Jun-17: With my French teacher's help, I finally managed to get our new dishwasher ordered. It will be more than a week till it arrives, but at least that's in progress.

Dinner was Rhubarb Khoresh (Roden, p360), a kind of beef stew, with rhubarb from the garden (maybe the last for this year). The stew was one of those glad-I-made-it-don't-have-to-do-it-again things. It's strange that the garden rhubarb is almost gone, but I still haven't seen it in the store. Served with plain rice, Beet Salad (Roden, p68), and Michoteta—Cream Creese and Cucumber Salad (Roden, p65). I've made both of the salads before. Both are good, but the one with feta and cuke really scratches my itch. Then some of the raspberry ice cream.

Friday/9-Jun-17: Found traces of another kitchen mouse, another one that especially likes cantuccini. Sigh.

Dinner was Chiles Rellenos Casserole (CL90, p147). It's the first time I've made this in quite a while. Used a big can of poblanos. Quite yummy. Then a salad. Then we finished off the raspberry ice cream. Yum.

Yogurt on overnight.

Saturday/10-Jun-17: Early meal today, a half recipe of Bang Bang Shrimp (web). Pretty good stuff, and fast and easy. I substituted smoked paprika for regular, which was a mistake. Served with a big salad.

Sunday/11-Jun-17: Mouse was in the trap this morning. Ed dropped him off (possibly too close to the house) on his way to singing this afternoon, so we had a fast dinner from the freezer. Mongolian Beef, served over rice with a side of broccoli. Okay and filling.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, May 29, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/29-May-17: Early meal today. We had a halfish recipe of Spicy Jerk Pork Chicken with Pepper Fried Rice (BHG/apr13; web) Well, it would have been pork if I'd defrosted that. Instead I defrosted a baggieful of boneless, skinless chicken thighs. Used a red bell pepper and one of the French vaguely spicy pepper/chiles for the banana pepper, and shaoxing wine for the white wine or dry sherry. Very good and easy.

Discovered I have lots of ground almonds in the fridge freezer. Need to use those up.

Tuesday/30-May-17: We were supposed to eat out today, but Ed forgot, so I made a clean-out-the-fridge meal. Searched for broccoli tomato sauce blue cheese and came up with this, which I did very loosely, using roasted broccoli instead of spinach. Had some leftover tomato sauce and filled that out with two tomatoes. Wasn't bad.

Wednesday/31-May-17: Shopping today. Our dishwasher is on the fritz. Ed's been working on it but without much success. First it was saying it was clogged up, as it does occasionally, then it's saying it's leaking. On-going issue.

Dinner was a halfish recipe of Grilled Salmon with White Bean and Arugula Salad (CL/jun16; web). Very nice dinner salad. I'm going to stick the recipe in Pat's salad book, since it fits right in with that.

We went to sit outside to eat and it immediately started drizzling. Because of the forecast high winds (which haven't happened so far), the pergola is furled. So we had a slightly damp dinner. But tasty.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/1-Jun-17: Dinner tonight was a halfish recipe of Pollo all'Arribiata—'Enraged' Chicken (TuscTable, p123). Good it was. Was surprised to find a bottle of chianti (Piccini) at Leclercc to use for the sauce. We finished the rest of it, so feel a bit happy tonight. Lots of sauce left, which we'll have over pasta for lunch one of these days. Served with tagliatelle (end of a multi-grain one plus some regular) with olive oil and chopped parsley as suggested.

Ed fixed the dishwasher today -- yay!

Friday/2-Jun-17:Lunch out today, so not much happened in the kitchen. Replanned our menus a bit, since we had steaks for lunch and there was more beef due up in a few days.

Oops, dishwasher not fixed. In moving it back in place, a connection came loose. Ed found this and plugged it back in. In the wrong place. Electric fizz. No more dishwasher. Back to hand washing for a bit.

Made a half recipe of Two-Tomato Jam (BoldVeg, p232), which is a go-with for tomorrow's meal.

Yogurt on overnight in anticipation of something needing yogurt in a few days.

Saturday/3-Jun-17: Interesting meal today. Our main was a half recipe of Grilled Eggplant and Toasted Pecan Salad (BoldVeg, p78). I see belatedly that this is supposed to be a salad or side dish; that explains why it seemed so skimpy. Served it over brown rice. It was good, but nothing extra special, but ... The recommended Two-Tomato Jam go-with (really a chutney) that I made last night was a star, definitely a keeper. To fill up the plate, I made Spiced Beets (30MinInd, p88), which I made several times already. Pretty and tasty. For dessert there was Carrot-Apple Halwa (BoldVeg, p240). This was pretty good and easy enough to do while other things a happening.

Sunday/4-Jun-17: Early meal today, a half recipe of Pasta Pentimento (EatingTog, p170; cookbooker). A really yummy pasta dish. Then a salad. Then the last of the halwa.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: yes for May, no for Jun; #4 BREAD: no for May, no for Jun

Monday, May 22, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/22-May-17: Early meal today, and yummy it was. I made a half recipe of Shrimp Scampi Fra Diavolo (I got it from EAT-L, here it is on the web). I used frozen, cooked shrimp; might add them a bit later than the recipe suggests. I didn't have any bucatini and no "fat" spaghetti-type thing except linguine (although I realize as I type that I have some spaghettoni in the freezer and that would have been perfect), so I used cascarrecia instead. I didn't think it was right, but Ed did. Then a big salad.

Tuesday/23-May-17: Early dinner today. We had Grilled Maple Sriracha Chicken Kebobs (web), grilled outside. A bit too sweet for either of our tastes; sriracha is already sweet and didn't need the extra sugar. Served with Roasted Garlic Lemon Broccoli (web), which was pretty good, and some roasted potatoes. We were full.

Wednesday/24-May-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was a half recipe of Cod with Beans, Corn, and Pesto (web), easy and fast and not bad at all. (Cod was on special today, hooray.) Served with some boiled new potatoes. Strawberries and cream for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/25-May-17: We attended a repas dansant with sanglier à la broche today. Delicious food and lots of it. Nothing happened in the kitchen today.

Friday/26-May-17: Early meal today. We had Lemony Seared Sea Scallops over Angel Hair (web). Tasty, but ... the recipe serves four (it says), divided among six bowls. Oh? And 8oz of pasta to serve four or six? I sort of halved it and used 6-ish oz of pasta (whole wheat spaghetti) for the two of us. It was good, though. Then a salad. For dessert there was Apple Berry Clafouti (MC), a recipe I've had for quite a while. A third recipe with one apple and a handful of frozen cranberries was a nice dessert for two.

Saturday/27-May-17: Off to the vet with Sophie this morning. Looks like she was in a fight yesterday and got some bad scratches on her backend. Conehead for her, with anitbiotics and painkillers, for a few days.

Dinner was a half recipes of Sauté de Dinde aux Olives, Riz, Blé, Sarrasin et Quinoa (VPG, web). This is part of a meal (for Wednesday). I made the go-with starter, Faisselle Baltique (VPG, web), which was interesting. Google Translate thinks faisselle is "cottage cheese," but it's not. It's kind of a very fresh cheese, a bit sour, but still nice tasting. (Good cottage cheese is not to be found here. We were very spoiled in NL for that.) This kind came in individual servings, which were turned out on some slices of cooked potato, surrounded by some smoked salmon, and topped with a sauce of olive oil, a bit of the whey drained from the faisselle, and coarse mustard. Should have been topped with chopped onion, but I used the tops of some green onions in pots. I served the sautté, squares of turkey scallops cooked with green olives in tomato sauce, with trio rice rather than Uncle Ben's rice, wheat, buckwheat, and quinoa mixture.

Yogurt on overnight

Sunday/28-May-17: Dinner was a half recipe of Tonnarelli al Granchio e Rucola—Tonnarelli with Crab and Rocket (ClassPasta, p107). This was very yummy, easy, and very pretty with the colors of the Italian flag, red, green, and white. Served with fresh pasta. To match the chili flakes in the sauce, I added some to the pasta. Rolled to 5 and cut as spaghetti, which turns out sort of squarish and fairly close to tonnarelli. But ... chili flakes don't cut well in spaghetti. Tasted good though.

Followed by Clafoutis aux Cerises (VPG; couldn't find on web). This was supposed to be the dessert for last night's dinner. An interesting recipe because it used cherries (griottes) from a jar, two for me since I couldn't find the 500g one asked, and slightly more than asked. Also odd that it was cooked in a skillet on the stovetop, supposedly turned over using a plate to brown on the other side. I put the skillet under the broiler to finish up. Pretty good it was.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, May 15, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/15-May-17: Ed still not feeling well, so he had a soup of chicken stock with some whole wheat noodles. I made myself some Shredded Chicken Tacos (Tinga de Pollo) (web), using the last of the Thanksgiving turkey. Not bad it was, if a bit sweet, even though I cut way back on the sugar.

Tuesday/16-May-17: An easy-on-Ed's-innards meal this afternoon. I made a half recipe of Spaghetti with Zucchini and Lemon (MW@Home, p195). This is an old favorite recipe that I haven't made in a while. For me, there was a little salad of sliced tomato with basil. Then a mini magnum.

Wednesday/17-May-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was 15-Minute Thai Coconut Curry Salmon (web). Oops, had only one instead of two tablespoons of green curry sauce. Maybe it would have been better with two, but it was quite good with only one. Used fresh salmon rather than frozen. Can't say it took 15 minutes, but it was done in well under under 30 minutes, and it was good. Served over rice and that was dinner.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/18-May-17: Leftover casserole of aiguilettes for our main meal today. It was pretty good reheated. I had a mini magnum for dessert. Have had the munchies all day too. Ate half an avocado from the fridge, a hard-boiled egg, and a packet of two cookies.

Put some black beans on to soak.

Friday/19-May-17: Cooked up the beans. Saved some for tomorrow's dinner; froze the rest.

Nice dinner, a halfish recipe of Roasted Pork Tenderloin with Chili Sauce (web; web). My varkenshaas was about 575g; a whole recipe asked about 1350g for four. We had more than enough for two. But it was delicious; not very hot at all. I didn't add the sugar and didn't miss it. Served with polenta and some steamed (hand-)gesneden snijbonen. Ed thought the plate was so pretty it deserved a photo, so here you are:


Saturday/20-May-17: Busy day today. We put out tomato plants and seeds for zucchini (there was only one seed in the packet!), eggplants, haricots verts, fêves, and kousebanden.

Got a second folder thing (a trieur, en français) for recipes. All the veggie recipes remain in the old one; fruits and nuts go in the second one. I collect all my, for example, mushroom recipes, clip them together and put them in the M-Q section. Seems to be a good way to work. Pulled out some of my fruit recipes for the semi-sorted stack of dessert recipes and ran again into the question: Should they be sorted by ingredient (chocolate, pear, banana, etc.) or by form (custard, pie, muffin, quick bread, cake, etc.) They're by form right now, but I'm leaning back to ingredient. Decisions, decisions.

Make some super banana bread following this recipe. I have no idea where this came from. I just found the unannotated copy in my stacks. If you recognize it, please let me know. It made an excellent loaf of banana bread.


Dinner was Harissa Sweet Potato Hash (web), served over brown rice. It was colorful and tasty.

Sunday/21-May-17: Ed didn't feel well enough to sing today, and I didn't feel well enough to go. Sigh.

Early meal of Walter McIlhenny's Chili (Tabasco, p89). This was quite tasty, but the meat was a bit on the tough side. Might use the pressure cooker another time. Served with Corn Bread (Joy, p 578) and guacamole. All good stuff.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 2
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no
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Monday, May 8, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/8-May-17: Dinner was Marinated Chicken Spiedies with Garlic Sauce (web), chicken marinated in olive oil, lemon juice, cilantro, and parsley, grilled on skewers, then plopped in toasted bread. (My first batch of bread caught on fire under the grill, a bit dramatic.) Pretty tasty. Made a whole recipe and the rest will appear later in the week. Served Orange Carrot Salad (web), that I made last week, this time with the carrots cut on the mandoline. The mandoline is marginally easier, but more to clean up, and it wastes so much of the carrot. I've got lots of carrot bits in my freezer sack for the next batch of chicken stock now.

Tuesday/9-May-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Tamarind Seabass with Cucumber (Jamie; unable to find on the web, an annoying feature of Jamie magazine), made with cod. This was okay, nothing special. Ed thought the tamarind flavor was too strong; I thought it was fine. Served with plain basmati rice and Stir-Fried Green Beans with Garlic (QuickWok, p130), which Ed liked especially and I thought were just okay. We evened it all out with some mini magnums (one classic, one white with almonds).

Wednesday/10-May-17: A day out today. Left early. Home late. Didn't think we'd be hungry, but we ended up eating our leftover pizza. Then fell into bed.

Thursday/11-May-17: Remembered we had the remains of a jar of some pretty good salsa verde when I saw the recipe for Salsa Verde Burgers (web). Used some slices of Maasdam cheese, minced some jalapeno slices, and called it pepper Jack cheese. Not bad at all. For a side, there was Summer Rice Salad (Rodale, p129), an old favorite I haven't made in a while. Some strawberries and cream for dessert.

Friday/12-May-17: Early meal today. We had Aiguillettes de Canard Gratinées (VPG, not to be found on the web). I made a half recipe, which should serve two and we will have two meals of it. Interesting assembly, easy to make. Cook some carrot coins and some broccoli bits. Make a sauce with milk and cream thickened with potato starch. (I used about half of the half asked and had a really thick sauce.) Purée that with about half of the cooked carrots and broccoli, adding and egg, S&P and a bit of grated nutmeg. Lay some aiguillettes (these are the narrow bits on the back of breast halves) on the bottom of a casserole, top with the remaining veggies, pour the puréed mixture over this, and top with some grated gruyère. Pop in a 210C/400F oven for 20 minutes.

Trying to get our US taxes done today.

Saturday/13-May-17: Oops, forgot to put yogurt on last night, so we're a bit short now. Didn't notice till too late to start it this morning.

Early meal today was a half recipe of Artichoke Puree with Sun-Dried Tomatoes (PeV, p32). Pretty good, but I didn't trim the artichokes well enough so there were some unpleasant fibers. And a salad. Ed not feeling well.

Made the top and bottom for tomorrow's dacquoise.

Yogurt on overnight.

Sunday/14-May-17: Finished off the Raspberry Dacquoise (web) for Cath's birthday do. Mine isn't nearly as pretty as Clotilde's, but it was pretty darn tasty.


I'd planned to make a salad with Monday's leftover chicken spiedies for dinner, but Ed's not eating, so I dumped them into what's left of Wednesday's rice salad and that's what I had. Easy and not too bad.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, May 1, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/1-May-17: Earlyish meal today. I made a halfish recipe of Spaghetti con i Turini—Spaghetti with Field Mushrooms (Field, p79). Instead of chicken broth to add liquid to the cooking shiitakes, I added a slog of white wine. Used whole wheat spaghetti. It was good. Then a salad. We were full.

Tuesday/2-May-17: Earlyish meal again. I picked last week's chicken, froze some of the meat, and made Moroccan Chicken Salad Pitas (CL/may14; web) with the rest. No pitas in the freezer (oops), so used some naans from the freezer. Pretty good stuff. Also made the accompanying Orange-Carrot Salad (web), which quite good. It would be fast and easy if I hadn't made all those matchsticks myself. Might try the mandolin next time.

Wednesday/3-May-17: Shopping today. Followed by an xray of my thumb. "C'est cassé," he said, as if I hadn't already figured that out.

Dinner was tuna steaks, on sale, probably a bit old. Accompanied by Pan-Charred Asparagus (web), which was ok, but I think I prefer the roasted ones, and some boiled new potatoes. Some store-bought custards with caramel for dessert.

Thursday/4-May-17: Dinner was Spinach Leek and Feta Cheese Frittata (web), which was pretty good. I made in in my 9" cast iron skillet, and used five whole eggs rather then 3 whole and 3 whites. It was good. And all we needed.

Friday/5-May-17: Another early main meal. We had Magret de Canard au Poivre (VPG, can't find it on the web). Pretty good. Served with carrots and frozen peas (no longer frozen, of course) and some of the gramigne pasta that I got for another recipe a couple of weeks ago.

Put lamb steaks on to marinate for tomorrow's meal.

Yogurt on overnight.

Saturday/6-May-17: We had a half recipe of (Harissa-Marinated) Lamb Salad (web). Lamb steaks were marinated overnight with harissa and lemon juice, then grilled and sliced. Served on a bed of roasted veggies (eggplant, zucchini, sweet potato) atop couscous with ras el hanout, with dollops of yogurt with chopped fresh mint. No S&P anywhere in the recipe; a bit of salt needed at the table. Simple and good.

Sunday/7-May-17: Yogurt on overday.

Pizza night tonight. I started with Piled High Zucchini and Cheese Topped Pizza (web). Didn't really make this, but used the shredded zucchini mixed with cheese as one of the main ingredients. For the dough, I used Easy No-Knead Pizza Dough (web), which is definitely a keeper. Pizza started with some of my tomato-free pizza sauce based on roasted red bell peppers from a jar, then the shredded zucchini mixed with goat cheese (for the cheese), then some slices of grilled eggplants, some grilled broccoli, some chopped black olives*, some capers, shredded mozzarella, grated Parmesan, and a sprinkle of red pepper flakes. Yum.

* A couple of weeks ago, we had pizzas out after a movie. We both ordered pizzas with black olives as one of the feature ingredients. Three black olives each, we got, more like a garnish than an ingredient.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, April 24, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/24-Apr-17: Spent the afternoon filing some chicken recipes and hoping to toss some of my stack. Didn't manage to toss many at all. There are just too many recipes needing to be made. I've got +/-180 recipes in the "bird" category, chicken, turkey, duck, pintade, etc. At two a week that's ninety weeks, a year and a half. Without collecting any more. Sigh.

Lunch didn't happen till about 4pm, so dinner was late. I wasn't very hungry and definitely didn't feel like making fresh pasta, which was on the plan. I got some frozen tagliatelle from the freezer to make Fettuccine al Salmone (PastaBible, p136). This was yummy, if a bit on the rich side with lots of cream and butter. Followed by a big salad. Nothing further needed.

(A nice thing about making pasta is that it forces me to clear off the peninsula counter. That's where all the Stuff accumulates until I have a reason to put it all away.)

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/25-Apr-17: Oscar to the vet in the early afternoon. Then I made a not-so-early dinner, but since we didn't have breakfast till noon, it worked out all right.

I made Lamb with Onions (Q&E, p32), the last pressure cooker recipe in that book that I haven't tried. (One more to do that I've made before.) Very good and really easy, just dump everything in the pressure cooker, give it a stir, seal it up, and go. Served with plain basmati rice and Green Beans with Mushrooms (Q&E, p86) without the added tomato (ran out). All tasty. After a while we had some mini magnums for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Wednesday/26-Apr-17: Shopping today. Dinner was Snapper with Fresh Tomatoes and Capers; the recipe came from The New American Heart Association Cookbook, 7th Edition; I copied it from GoogleBooks. Used lieu noir (saithe) rather than snapper. It was good. Served with orzo and some roasted asparagus, a few left from last week and a new, smaller package of organic ones. Some store-bought riz au lait for dessert, topped with a couple of strawberries, which didn't really go well with the texture of the pudding. But tasted fine.

Thursday/27-Apr-17: Early dinner was Yogurt-Curry Marinated Chicken Thighs (web), easy to assemble and quite tasty. Broiled the thighs. Accompanied by a quarter recipe of Rice with Peas (MJ1, p149) and some canned corn. For dessert, there was Crème Fraîche Ice Cream (MC), made with sucre de canne, so it was fairly beige, but still tasty.

Friday/28-Apr-17: Pogo is really sick today, a bit worrying. Throwing up, not eating, breathing funny, trembling, weaker than usual. Made a vet appointment for tomorrow morning.

Yes, finally got the peninsula counter cleared off and we had fresh pasta tonight. It was Fettuccine alle Verdure (ClassPasta, p92). I cut tagliatelle rather than fettuccine, and I cut them at 5 rather than 6. I may prefer fettuccine at 5, but we thought the tagliatelle were a bit too thick. Still quite edible though. The sauce was okay, nothing special. As we were eating, I thought it could have used some fresh parsley stirred in, or maybe some shredded basil. Then a big salad.

Ed was being very helpful clearing up, scraping all the excess flour into the recycle food bin. Then he bobbled the bin and turn in out onto the dutch oven, wok, and floor below. Big mess to clean up. Oh well.

Saturday/29-Apr-17: Pogo was better this morning, no longer trembling, breathing easier, but we went off to the vet anyhow. We're treating symptoms now, hoping it just goest away. If they recur, he'll get some serious testing. He did manage to walk up the stairs by himself tonight.

Early meal today. Broccoli Soup with Lemon-Chive Cream (web), with was pretty good, with tuna salad sandwiches. For dessert, some nice almond paste pastries from the boulangerie.

Sunday/30-Apr-17: Dinner was way late tonight. My fault for not calculating properly how long it would take. When we finally got there, we had Jamie Oliver's Chicken in Milk (all over the web, web, web), a very popular recipe. And justifiably. We ate half. I'll use the rest for a mreal in a couple of days (or else it goes in the freezer). Lots of sauce left; thinking it will turn into a soup in the next days. Served with Clothilde Dusoulier's Perfect Roast Potatoes (web), which I had to cook under the broiler since there wasn't an oven at the proper temperature. These turned out great. And Haricots Verts in Walnut Oil (HandyBook; Bard, p216). We're stuffed.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, April 17, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/17-Apr-17: Early meal today before we went off to a concert. We had Shish Taouk—Lebanese Chicken Skewers (web). Put the chicken to marinate last night. Pretty good, although I think thighs might have been even better. Served with orzo, roasted asparagus (two spears from the garden, the rest left from last shopping), and a grated carrot salad. That was all.

Tuesday/18-Apr-17: Lunch out today. Nothing happened in the kitchen.

Wednesday/19-Apr-17: Shopping today. The salmon I'd planned uses up something else, but tuna was on sale. This meant a bit of last-minute replanning so we could have both.

Tonight we had grilled tuna, somewhat overdone, my fault; with steamed asparagus and tagliatelle with sautéed mushrooms. For dessert we did serious damage to our chocolate Easter bunnies, previously neglected.

Thursday/20-Apr-17: Early meal today. We had Baked Cheddar Polenta and Salmon with Crushed Pea and Garlic (web). Pretty good, but a bit long on the polenta. I love the stuff, but I'm stuffed. Some strawberries and cream for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/21-Apr-17: Dinner was a half recipe Gratin de Brocoli, Pomme de Terre et Merguez (VPG). (I haven't been able to find a copy of this online, unfortunately.) Quite good for a throw-together kind of dinner. Cooked potatoes, broccoli, and merguez are tossed together with a bechamel sauce (homemade here, rather than store-bought as the recipe asked), then topped with gruyère (some aged comtè instead), baked for a bit, then put under the broiler to brown. Yum. Made a salad but the half recipe was more than enough for two, so the salad goes on till tomorrow.

Saturday/22-Apr-17: Up and out early this morning to go to the Saturday morning walk-in hours for our doctor (nothing serious). After we got home and ate breakfast, I made Seviyan ki Kheer—Vermicelli Pudding (MJ1, p192), a recipe I've made repeatedly, trying to get it just right. This time I followed Jaffrey's timing for cooking, rather than volume. And it worked! I used raw brown sugar rather than white, so the color was a bit tan. I used ground cardamom rather than crushing or grinding seeds, which didn't give as nice a flavor. Still, it was altogether very successful.

Had an itch for Shrimp Biryani but couldn't remember from which book I made it not too long ago. Found a recipe online (web), which turned out to come from a book I have (MJ@Home, p214), the very recipe I've made. Did it again. Yum. Served with Cachumber—Tomato, Onion and Green Coriander Relish (MJ1, p172). And kheer for dessert. Lekker!

Sunday/23-Apr-17: Early meal today (the better to work on ironing). We had a half dose of Grilled Chicken Breast with Satay Sauce (CL dec16; web). The chicken was good, but neither of us were impressed by the satay sauce. Something missing there. The published go-with was Cucumber, Carrot, and Orange Salad (web), which was good, but the sauce lacked a bit of something; more vinegar needed perhaps. And a bit of buckwheat crozets on the side. Followed by the uneaten salad from Friday, and then by the rest of yesterday's kheer.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, April 10, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/10-Apr-17: Back from Bordeaux this afternoon, collecting Pogo and the cats along the way. Dinner from the freezer, a beef stew we didn't much like the first time and it didn't improve in the freezer. Made a salad, but we didn't eat it. Tomorrow's lunch perhaps.

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/11-Apr-17: Oops, the salad has to wait another day. Our lunch was Vaguely Vietnamese Slow Cooker Pork Tacos (web) from the freezer. Again, made the Vaguely Vietnamese Carrot-Cabbage Slaw as a go-with. Next time should do all the shredding with the cuisinart. All good stuff, though, and we're full.

Wednesday/12-Apr-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Mahi Mahi with Curry-Yogurt Mayonnaise (Desperation, p283; cookbooker), with tuna instead of mahi mahi. Served with roasted asparagus, trio rice, and the salad we didn't eat on Monday. For dessert, some store-bought suisse pastries.

Thursday/13-Apr-17: Defrosted a varkenshaas (aka filet mignon du porc or pork tenderloin), marinated it in some defrosted charmoula sauce. Also used that to flavor some slices of eggplant. Grilled on on the bbq. Served with a half dose of Mambo Rice (web), which was pretty darn good, and a made-up salad of avocado, tomato, cilantro, and lime juice. All was good. We're full. (And I drank too much wine. I won't tell if you don't.)

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/14-Apr-17: We went to Angoulême to do some errands today. Both had omelets for lunch. Then we didn't feel like dinner, so I'm off plan for the week now. Harvested the first rhubarb of the season and made Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake (MC), pretty good stuff.

Saturday/15-Apr-17: Plans changed today. I ended up not cooking and we had a pizza after a movie. Serious replanning needed for the next days.

Sunday/16-Apr-17: Early dinner was Gramigne con Verza e Salsiccia—Cabbage and Sausage (Geometry, p135; cookbooker). Never heard of gramigne before, but found the exact thing labeled "short spaghetti" at the grocery. The whole dish was yummy. Followed by a salad. and the last of the Rhubarb Upside-Down Cake.

Yogurt on overnight. Chicken on to marinate for tomorrow's early meal.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 2
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, April 3, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/3-Apr-17: Earlyish meal today. We had Orecchiette with Ricotta, Broad Beans and Mint (Diaries, p194; cookbooker). Didn't use orecchiette, but my mini-lasagnas, malfada, I think they're called. This was good. First favas of the year. Then a salad. That was all.

Tuesday/4-Apr-17: A bit of a replan tonight since I had defrosted kip filets that I didn't really need. Dinner was Cashew Chicken Coconut Curry (web); I collected this recipe in 2014. My printed copy says to use broccoli or red bell pepper; having a red bell pepper needing to be used, that's what I did. Either broccoli or a combination of broccoli and red bell pepper would be fine. Turns out I didn't have enough cashews, but it could only have been better. Served the curry over leftover Cilantro-Lime Black Bean Rice from the weekend. Also had some asparagus and mushrooms that needed using. A quick search turned up Asian Asparagus and Mushrooms (web). This was easy and quite good. A nice meal altogether; we were full.

Yogurt on overnight.

Wednesday/5-Apr-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Visburgertjes (web), about a 1/2 recipe with 300g lieu noir. Good, they were. Served with Broccoli in Oyster Sauce (Delightful, p58) and Cucumber Salad (Delightful, p51). Ed thought the salad made a nice abstract picture:


For dessert we had some store-bought torsades, a twisted pastry with some tiny chocolate chips.

Thursday/6-Apr-17: Early meal today. We had Goan Pork Vindaloo with Potatoes (web). This is a Madhur Jaffrey recipe; I haven't yet found it in any my books, but haven't done an exhaustive search yet. Anyhow, it was very good. Did it in the pressure cooker; it wanted a bit more water than she says. I added some extra, but it should have been a bit more still, at least one cup altogether. Ground peppercorns with the first batch of spices rather than grinding them separately. Used the full 1tsp of cayenne; it was hot but a long way from too hot. Altogether good. For a side there was Tangy Green Beans with Ajwain and Ginger (SpiceKitch, p38), an old favorite, still good.

Friday/7-Apr-17-Sunday/9-Apr-17: Spent these days in Bordeaux, a long weekend to see Yo-yo Ma perform with Kathryn Stott, with three good meals tossed in.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 2
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, March 27, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/27-Mar-17: A bit of bad planning since we had shrimp two nights ago. But tonight, there was a half dose of Crevettes au Curry et Concombre au Gingembre (C&V, but irritatingly and unfortunately not findable on their site). A shame, since it was good and easy. Came with a nice little salad of shaved cucumber with a neutral oil, sesame oil, lemon juice, and sesame seeds (and I added a pinch of cayenne). For dessert there was, sort of, Peach Parfait with Amaretto Cream (MW@Home, p318); I used canned peaches and we ended up eating all of it. Yum.

Tuesday/28-Mar-17: Discovered we have a new mouse in the kitchen. This one likes a new mushroom-flavored pasta that I've recently bought and haven't tried yet. Likes it some much that he/she opened the sack, then wandered around inside it, pooping as he/she went. Had to throw the whole sack away, sadly.

Dinner from the freezer, West Indies Salmon Patties (MC; web), which were quite good. Served with West Indies Green Beans (web), also good, and Caribbean Yellow Rice and Pigeon Peas (MW@Home, p154). I made a half recipe with yellow split peas, which I cooked at lunch time, for the pigeon peas. I think this is meant as a main course because we have more left than we ate. Was tasty though. Mini magnums for dessert.

Wednesday/29-Mar-17: No sign of our latest mouse friend this morning.

Shopping today. After putting up the groceries, I made a Prune Cake (MC), an easy cake, using up some of my surplus of walnuts.

Dinner was Papillote de Cabillaud à la Courgette, Citron Confit et Sauce au Yaourt (VPG; haven't found on web). It was pretty good. Forgetting about the zucchini under the cod, I roasted some of the asparagus I bought today. Reheated some of the Caribbean Yellow Rice as a side.

Yogurt on overnight.

Thursday/30-Mar-17: Early meal today, since we're out this evening.

Heard the first cuckoo of the year today.

We had Easy Smoked Sausage Skillet (web). This is from a Hillshire Farm ad in CL, I'd guess. Of course, there's no Hillshire Farm here; I used a morteau sausage. No frozen broccoli; used fresh and cooked that bit a bit longer which didn't hurt at all. Brown rice instead of instant rice. Turned out good. Serves 4-6? No. Three would be a good number. Four if you served it with a salad or some such. But it's pretty much a one-dish meal, so that seemed like too much trouble. Tasty it was.

Friday/31-Mar-17: Early dinner tonight. Sesame Eggplant and Spaghetti (BoldVeg, p180; cookbooker); a full recipe is dinner for two and that's what I did. Followed by a salad. We're both stuffed.

After an intense rainfall, we had water dripping in the living room and small puddle in the office. Looks like it's coming down inside the wall. Sigh. No damage, but annoying.

Saturday/1-Apr-17: Dinner was One-Pan Chicken Thighs with Cilantro-Lime Black Bean Rice (web). This was quite good, and easy to put together. I meant to cook up a batch of black beans, to use and to freeze, but didn't do it, so used canned. I think the recipe is meant for four, with only one thigh per person. That seems a bit skimpy; I usually serve two per person. I made it all; we ate four thighs; and there's a bunch of rice left. Followed by a salad. No dessert for me; Ed's having a mini magnum.

Yogurt on overnight.

Sunday/2-Apr-17: Ed was at choir practice today, and I defrosted the chest freezer; one of my favorite chores—not. But it's much easier when it's routine, rather than all iced up. Will try to keep to a 6-month schedule now.

Worked on merging and clearing out the "bird" part of my active stacks of recipe clippings today. Too many to try; every one looks good. Have to put on a throw-it-out hat to finish up this part. Almost 200 clippings in birds.

Dinner was Tournedos de Gigot au Citron Confit (VPG; web); strangely, while I got this recipe for VPG, the only on-line version I've found is from C&V, and it's the same recipe. Very odd. The idea is that you tie some slices of gigot up to make them look like tournedos. Well, ok. Topped with a sauce of chopped preserved lemon, lemon juice, rosemary pine nuts (too many), olive oil, honey, and S&P. Turned out pretty good, actually, if a bit of trouble to make. Served with steam-sautéed potatoes and shrooms with shallots and garlic; good stuff. Made too much, but Ed did an excellent job of finishing them off. Also had some Haricots Verts with Warm Mustard Vinaigrette (CL/jan-feb16; web), simple and tasty.

Haven't found further trace of our latest mouse. It's found its own way out or been eaten by a cat.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 4
This month: #3 PASTA: yes for March, no for April; #4 BREAD: no for March, no for April

Monday, March 20, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/20-Mar-17: Early meal today. We had a half recipe of Pan-Seared Pork Chops with Red Currant Sauce (web). Used brown rice instead of barley for the accompanying mushroom pilaf. And a salad. Then a Haagen-Dasz ice cream cup for me and a mini magnum for Ed.

Tuesday/21-Mar-17: Pogo sick overnight. Cancel today's events. Plan a dinner using odd bits from the fridge. We ended up having a quarter recipe, more or less, of Pasta with Tuna, Asparagus, Broccoli and Peas (web). Pretty good stuff altogether. I had a mini magnum for dessert.

Wednesday/22-Mar-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Dilled Salmon Steaks for Two (MC; web). Good, fast, easy. I didn't serve with teh zucchini and tomato stew as suggested, but with Oven-Roasted Asparagus (web) and some trio rice. Some store-bought custards with caramel for dessert.

Pogo still sickly. Getting better we think.

Thursday/23-Mar-17: Earlyish meal today. We had a halfish recipe of Garlicky Chicken with Feta and Oregano (Screamingly, p30; cookbooker). This was easy and pretty darn good. As suggested served with Orzo with Lemon and Herbs (Screamingly, p47; cookbooker) which was good, if too soupy as given. And the rest of the asparagus, roasted.

Friday/24-Mar-17: Dinner was a half recipe of Chilorio, Mexican Pulled Pork (web), more or less. Used cider vinegar instead of white vinegar. Used the pressure cooker, and it ran low on liquid, so the meat was sort of burnt to the bottom. We rescued what we could. What there was, was good. With my last good corn tortillas from the freezer, garnishes of onion, cilantro, and feta. Opened a bottle of what turned out to be pretty good salsa verde. (Have to remember the brand for when I order again.) Made a little avocado salad as a go-with. Good and we're full.

Saturday/25-Mar-17: Pasta day. There was Shrimp Dill Sauce (PastaMach, p135; cookbooker) over Dilly Pasta (PastaMach, p75; cookbooker), followed by a salad.

Sunday/26-Mar-17: Pogo betterish, if still not great.

Early meal today, our first eaten outside this year. We had The Most Delicious Meat Cubes (Q&E, p29), made with lamb. Have made this with pork before and without the pressure cooker. I think I managed to set the cooker for veggies rather than meat, but the meat was fine; maybe it would have been softer if I'd done it right, but this was not a problem. I added extra water and there was just barely enough to cook properly. If it had gone later, it might have been burnt as it was on Friday. Served with Indian Mashed Potatoes (Q&E, p90), which is yummy and I haven't made in a while. And there was Karhai Broccoli (MJ@Home, p148) to use up a bit of broccoli. All tasty.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, March 13, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/13-Mar-17: Worked on clearing out unlikely-to-be-used recipes from the active stacks of clippings.

Off plan tonight. Used up the last of the cauliflower to make a half recipe of Roasted Cauliflower & Mushroom Carbonara. (Think this is from a Jamie magazine, at least it's from some British magazine,but I can't find it online unfortunately.) I didn't have enough cauliflower, so I used some broccoli too; and a box of shiitakes for the mushrooms; and a packet of lardons for the pancetta. Turned out pretty good actually. Was too lazy to make a salad as a go-with, so this is all we had.

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/14-Mar-17: BookChatters in the morning; ENT, shopping at Grand Frais and Biocoop, and stop at pharmacy in the afternoon meant not much time for anything. Dinner was a half dose of Egg Curry (web), which turned out pretty good. Served with plain rice and Karhai Broccoli (MJ@Home, p148).

Wednesday/15-Mar-17: Change of plans today, since I wasn't ready with the meal plan and shopping list. Defrosted some duck sausages we got at a marché des producteurs last summer. Ed barbecued them while I made (more or less) Asparagus with Garlic and Balsamic Reduction (web). More or less, because I was short on balsamic vinegar—inventory failure. Also some buckwheat crozets. At Grand Frais yesterday, I not only scored some asparagus (from Spain), but also some blueberries from Morocco. Wasn't aware that blueberries were something brown in Morocco, in March, but they were delicious. I made a half recipe of Easy Blueberry Cobbler (MC 2BTried; web) in an 8" (or 9"?) square dish. Remarkably good for little effort. Ed wanted to eat it all.

Thursday/16-Mar-17: Shopping today. Dinner was Grilled Tuna Kebobs (web) under the broiler. Good, and could be done with swordfish or halibut. Served with trio rice and Harissa-and-Maple-Roasted Carrots (web). Made a halfish (maybe less, I didn't weigh) recipe of the carrots; started with a huge stack, but after roasting it looked like just one serving. They were good, though. That was all.

Friday/17-Mar-17: We were out early, early this morning for our 5-yearly bilan de santé. There before 8am; home about 11am. We both managed to keep going all day in spite of early start.

Dinner was definitely a hit. I made a third-ish recipe of Sautéed Veal with Sherry and Green Olives (EatingTog, p149; cookbooker), served with a some pasta. Made a salad, but we didn't feel like eating it. Instead we finished the blueberry cobbler, which was still yummy. This is really rather like a clafoutis, and is definitely a keeper recipe.

Saturday/18-Mar-17: Early meal today. We had Chicken Thigh, Sausage and Red Lentil One-Pot Roast (web). I goofed and defrosted some skinless boneless thighs, rather than bone-in ones, so we had a real mixture. The skin on the bone-in thighs was remarkably crispy. I'm not a skin person, but this was good. I used Toulouse sausages, which were pretty plain. Something a bit more zippy would be nice; not smoked, I think. De Puy lentils, rather than the red ones might be nice. Takes a bit of unattended wall clock time, but very easy to assemble and cook. Followed by yesterday's uneaten salad. Then I had a mini magnum.

Sunday/19-Mar-17: The bread machine made (with a bit of help) Cayenne Cornbread (BigGerman, p182). The poor machine isn't very happy; sometimes the paddle needs a bit of help to get around.

We had our main meal early today. Cayenne Cornbread along with Potato and Green Chile Stew (web), which was even easier because I used three chiles from a little can. Very tasty for little effort.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, March 6, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/6-Mar-17: Another Big Blow today and we were without electricity for three hours. There was leftover meatloaf on the menu tonight, so we would still have eaten well in the dark. Served with peas and carrots (fresh carrot, frozen peas) and Spaetzle (MW@Home, p203).

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/7-Mar-17: Early meal today so we can go to a concert in Limoges this evening. We had Bangkok Shrimp, a recipes I collected from Betsy at EAT-L. She posted a shrimp version, but said  it was originally a beef recipe and that shrimp was recommended as an alternative. I found the beef version here, without the shrimp recommendation. The shrimp version uses lime juice instead of lemon juice, otherwise the same. This was yummy. I didn't have chunky peanut butter, so just used the regular stuff with some extra peanuts thrown in. Oops, no more carrots in house. Nevertheless, delicious. Served with Asian Green Bean Salad (web), also good. Seeded and chopped a regular tomato, rather than cherry tomatoes. Tasty meal we had.

Wednesday/8-Mar-17: Shopping today. We got there fairly early, i.e., in time for lunch, and the store was almost empty. Very strange.

Dinner was Grilled Salmon with Avocado Salsa (web). Good stuff. Salmon was rubbed with a mixture of salt, cumin, paprika, onion powder, ancho powder, and black pepper. Very simple salsa of avocado, red onion, lime juice, and chopped cilantro. All good. Served with polenta and two artichokes (impulse buy, on sale today) cooked in the pressure cooker, with a really simple dip of mayo and dijon mustard sprinkled with paprika. For dessert, some store-bought rice custards with caramel. We ate well.

Thursday/9-Mar-17: Dinner was disappointing, a half recipe of Daniel Boulud's Chicken Tagine (web). Took a long time to make and tasted pretty blah, not bad, just not interesting. Looked so promising. Over couscous. And a mini ice cream bar for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/10-Mar-17: Sorted through one of my ancillary stacks of recipes today; threw out some, need to throw out more.

Back to the pressure cooker with Mahur Jaffrey today, for Lamb Stewed in Coconut Milk (Q&E, p34; cookbooker). Yummy as usual, although it seemed to take a long time to assemble. As suggested, served with Stir-Fried Green Cabbage with Fennel Seeds (Q&E, p88; cookbooker). And some plain basmati rice. For dessert I used up some frozen cherries to make a half recipe of Clafoutis aux Cerises (VPG); haven't been able to find it on the web, but that's ok. This is a seriously non-standard clafoutis recipe and didn't work at all. It was more like a skimpy pudding with lots of cherries. Tasted fine, but it wasn't anything like a clafoutis.

Saturday/11-Mar-17: Meant to make pasta today, but didn't feel like it after a couple of days of long prep dinner. Used tagliatelle from the freezer to make a half dose of Tonnarelli ai Gamberi e Funghi (ClassPasta, p104; cookbooker). Followed by a salad.

Sunday/12-Mar-17: Lovely lunch out before a concert. Nothing happened in the kitchen.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: yes; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: no; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, February 27, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/27-Feb-17: We finished last week's Chicken Tortilla Pie for dinner, followed by a salad. For dessert we split a piece of the walnut-chocolate tart from the Massignac boulanger, good but rich.

Tuesday/28-Feb-17: Early meal today. We shared a half recipe of Eendenborst met Zuurkool (web), and really tasty it was. I used lardons fumés instead of katenspek (which is smoked, as I remember) and enough for a full recipe, since that's what was in the package. I made some simple buttered potatoes as a go-with, although they were hardly needed. And a salad that we ate later.

Wednesday/1-Mar-17: Shopping today. Not as early as I'd have preferred, but we did it.

Ed cooked dinner, bless his heart, while I reviewed for my French lesson tomorrow. We had a half recipe of Asian Salmon and Green Beans Stir Fry (web), which was pretty good if not great. For dessert, we had some chocolate pudding with "Vietnamese chocolate," keeping with the Asian theme.

Thursday/2-Mar-17: Dinner was a half dose of Scallops in Double Pepper Sauce (Tabasco, p62; cookbooker). Served over polenta. Then a big salad.

Yogurt on overnight.

Friday/3-Mar-17: Early meal today. I made meatloaf in the pressure cooker, which was super. Used a non-pressure cooker recipe sent by an EAT-L friend; I'm sure any recipe would work. For the glaze/sauce, I defrosted some of my "pizza sauce" made from roasted red bell peppers. Very good meatloaf. This one was seasoned with a bit of Worcestershire, cumin, dry mustard, and cheddar cheese (I used old mimelotte). Served with garlicky smashed potatoes and Buttered Beet and Carrot Sauté (CL/dec16, web). All tasty.

Saturday/4-Mar-17: Early meal today. A half recipe of Mushroom Risotto (web). I was intrigued by this recipe because it uses brandy as the "starter" liquid for the risotto where you might ordinarily use white wine. Can't say that I noticed the difference. The recipe is way short on mushrooms, only two cups for the full recipe. I used more than that for my half recipe and I can't say there were too many. Nevertheless it was tasty. Followed by a salad. Then bits of ice cream, a Haagen-Dazs cup for me and a mini Magnum for Ed.

Sunday/5-Mar-17: Dinner from the freezer tonight. We had Lamb Stew with Tamarind and Dumplings, which was tasty still, but the dumplings didn't like either being frozen or reheated; they had a very odd texture. Served over basmati rice (having forgotten about the dumplings), along with Carrots with Cilantro (MJ@Home, p149) and Roasted Curried Cauliflower (CL; web). The carrots I've made before, and they were good as always. The cauliflower was a clipping from CL; it's really easy and was surprisingly good. (I see there's a similar recipe with the same name that includes lemon juice and a bit of cayenne that I'll try before long.) We were full.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: yes for February, no March; #4 BREAD: no for February, no for March

Monday, February 20, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/20-Feb-17: When I made the meal plan last week, I planned a dish with scallops this evening, thinking there were plenty in the freezer. Not. So replan for today. And for tomorrow, since I seem to be coming down with Ed's lurgi, and we decided to postpone tomorrow's lunch out. Boo. So replanning done.

Tonight we had Pepper and Anchovy Pasta Sauce (MarCuc, p149) over spaghetti, using up the bell peppers that were on hand for the planned scallop dish. Followed by a salad using up the carrot and onion salad from Saturday's Indian-ish dinner. And some little Haagen-Dasz ice cream cups for dessert.

Yogurt on overnight.

Tuesday/21-Feb-17: Tonight's dinner was Tortilla Pie with Chicken (web), made with a can of salsa verde and double Glouscestershire for the cheese. Very easy and wasn't too bad, although the cheese probably wasn't the best choice. Then a big salad.

Wednesday/22-Feb-17: Shopping today. We're both feeling puny so we didn't get off till really late. Finally found packages of large frozen scallops without the coral today and snatched up three without checking the price. Ouch, €16.99 for 400g times three.

Dinner was a half recipe of Cabillaud en Crumble de Jambon Cru (VPG; web, more or less). Tasty and pretty easy to make, except for finely mincing the ham and cilantro. Guess I could have used the cuisinart, but that seemed like more trouble to get out, plus the clean-up crew would prefer less work. Served with smashed potatoes and steamed broccoli. We were too full for dessert.

Thursday/23-Feb-17: Made up a batch of Oven-Roasted Tomatoes (HandyBook) and froze them.

Early meal today. We managed to eat a whole recipe of Curried Fried Rice (MW@Home, p226; cookbooker) which should have served four. Then we had the desserts I bought for last night—vanilla rice puddings. More rice, just what we needed. We've eaten tastily if without variety.

Friday/24-Feb-17: Dinner from the freezer tonight. Had some sauce for Barbecued Raspberry-Hoisin Chicken (web), but used it for pork chops. Made the brown rice as instructed (tossed with vinegar and sliced green onions) and some roasted green bean, which were pretty boring. All were pepped up by the sauce.

Saturday/25-Feb-17: Dinner out this evening. Nothing happened in the kitchen. (But very bad recurrence of old stomach problem that hasn't bothered me in a long time.)

Sunday/26-Feb-17: My tummy's still feeling bad after last night's problems, so there was not much happening in the kitchen. Ed had some leftover beef curry from the freezer. I had some brown rice from the fridge that I was saving to making a little side salad one night, topped with a bit of zingy sauce from something or other. It was good.

Yogurt on overnight.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, February 13, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/13-Feb-17: Dinner was Mille-feuille de Romanesco et de Saumon (web). I realized after serving that this was meant to be an entrée rather than the main dish. Oops. Then a plain salad, croutons only. Then a little dessert using up the last two squares of pâte feuilleté, filled with apple, créme fraîche, dried cranberries, almond powder, etc. Pretty tasty with a bit of cream on top.

Tuesday/14-Feb-17: Read through an issue of C&V this morning. Best issue in a quite a while. Maybe it's too bad I let my subscription lapse.

Valentine's lunch out today. Nothing further happened in the kitchen, except a bowl of popcorn.

Wednesday/15-Feb-17: Shopping today.

Dinner was Pan-Fried Salmon with Gnocchi (web), which was interesting but not great. Ed liked the fried gnocchi, something I don't usually do. Then a salad. We were full.

Yogurt on overnight. (Should have made it last night, but I was too lazy.)

Thursday/16-Feb-17: Early meal today. We had Eggplant with Yogurt Sauce (MC). Thick eggplant slices are brushed with lemon juice and oil, then grilled. This has a yummy sauce of yogurt, feta, finely chopped onion, mint leaves, and garlic, lemon juice, and cayenne. All served in pitas. Accompanied by Crushed Spiced Carrot Salad (Morocco, p78).

Friday/17-Feb-17: Dinner was Pork Chops with Hot Garlic Sauce (MC). I was lazy and used powdered ginger and garlic, but it was still good. I used some trio rice, the leftover romanesco, and some broccoli to make a go-with salad, which was pretty good.

Yogurt on overnight.

Saturday/18-Feb-17: This morning we found that one of our charming cats left us the remains of a mouse head just outside our bedroom door. Found in the night, I suppose.

Back to the pressure cooker for dinner. We had Lamb with Cardamom (Q&E, p30; cookbooker) over plain basmati rice, along with Carrot and Onion Salad (MJ1, p171). I made a full dose of the lamb and we managed to eat all of its deliciousness even though that was a bit of a stretch.

I'm making a little mini-project of cooking all of the pressure cooker recipes from Q&E. Have three or four recipes more to go now. Thought briefly about doing this for Cookbook Countdown, but really don't feel like I have the time right now. Why do I feel so busy?

Sunday/19-Feb-17: The cascareccia mouse seems to have disappeared, but today I found traces of the latest mouse, now deceased. This one had a liking for our cantuccini-like cookies, ones from Provence instead of Italy. Looks like I'll have to do a thorough clean of two banks of Ivar shelving tomorrow.

Dinner was a half recipe of Lemony Chicken Saltimboca (CL/nov12, web). This was very easy and very tasty. Served with Clotilde Dusoulier's Perfect Roasted Potatoes (HandyBook; web), an old favorite, and Roasted Green Beans with Walnuts and Rosemary (VT; web), which was quite good with very little effort.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 3
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no

Monday, February 6, 2017

This week in the kitchen

Monday/6-Feb-17: Leftover cheese enchiladas and Spanish rice for dinner, with some new guacamole. We're full.

Tuesday/7-Feb-17: Earlyish main meal today. A half recipe of Mushroom Pot Pies (web). Pretty good they were, but needed a bit of something, maybe garlic, to give the sauce a bit more oomph. And a salad. That was all.

Wednesday/8-Feb-17: Fresh pasta for our main meal. I made Mustard Pasta (PastaMach, p82; cookbooker). Maybe my flour was old or dry. I used the optional teaspoon of olive oil and still needed to add a second egg to make a dough that could be kneaded. The recommended sauce was Scarborough Tomato Sauce (PastaMach, p146; cookbooker)—think parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme. The sauce was good, but the taste overwhelmed the subtler taste of the pasta. Then a salad. And some mini magnums for dessert.

Thursday/9-Feb-17: Shopping day today.

Dinner was a half a recipe of Fettuccine al Tonno e Panna allo Zafferano (ClassPasta, p92), fettuccine with tuna and a saffron cream sauce. It was so-so. Would have been better to cook the tuna separately and serve slices on the pasta. Then a salad. Made a double-boiler bread pudding with the end of a bread that went stale quickly. Stirred in some chocolate chips just to see. Not something to do again. Won't stop us from eating it, of course.

Friday/10-Feb-17: A confusing day today. I was supposed to start a crockpot dinner in the afternoon, but didn't get to it. Changed to something else, then discovered I'd neglected to buy a major ingredient. Back to the crockpot dinner, but without the crockpot. We had Slow Cooker Chicken & Mushroom Soup (web), made in the Dutch oven. (Thought briefly about the pressure cooker, but didn't dare.) Made about a 2/3 recipe with my 500g of mushrooms. Add crème fraîche rather than cream at the end. Quite tasty. We ate it all. Then more of the bread pudding.

Prepared the dry brine that I'll put on a chicken tomorrow to roast on Sunday.

Saturday/11-Feb-17: Started yogurt early, then went to the doctor's walk-in hours (prescription renewal, no big deal) early-ish today, getting there just after 9am. Usually it's not very crowded on Saturdays. Today it was jam-packed. We got out after noon. Sigh.

Dry brined a chicken for tomorrow's meal.

Dinner was a halish recipe of Lentilles Vertes, Chou Romanesco et Saucisse (VPG). (This version is the same except that they use broccoli instead of the romanesco.) The chipolatas (sausages) that I used came from a vendor at one of last summer's marché des producteurs. Excellent they were. I used four for the two of us instead of two. The dish was good enough, but rather boring. It needed some sauce, maybe a dab of chicken stock with some mustard would have been good. Then we finished off the bread pudding.

Sunday/12-Feb-17: Unhappy day. Discovered this morning that Ed washed my expensive (worth every penny) chicken shears in the dishwasher last night. How many times have I told him that those don't go in the dishwasher?

Today's chickie was dry-brined with a southeast Asia flavor. As I've done before, I spatchcocked the chicken, browned it skin-side down, turned it and put another heavy skillet on top, then roasted for 45 minutes at 400F. Tasty thing. Served with plain rice and Thai-Style Green Beans (web). The green beans were old, but the dish still tasted pretty good.

Progress on goals
This week: #1 BACKLOG: no; #2 VEG/FISH: 5
This month: #3 PASTA: yes; #4 BREAD: no