Archive for November, 2007

I’ve Been Slacking.

Today is the last day of NaBloPoMo. And I was doing so well…… But i missed a couple days. Things have been busy, and strangely, food has not been a priority (WHAT??)

For example, while fending off a nasty cold with Airboune and Cold-Eeze, I just couldn’t even think of something to make for dinner last night. The only thing I was craving was ice cream. I called Husband for ideas, and he reminded me I’m an adult and can eat ice cream for dinner. Oh, yeah, Wanna pick some up? And he did. But he also recommend I pick up a take and bake pizza at Papa Murphy’s on the way home.

Good idea. So I chose to do a large pizza. On Husband’s half I did Gourmet Italian and on my half the Gourmet Vegetarian. I was worried about the crust because it look really thin, but it baked up really nicely. The crust was far from soggy and was even crisp in the middle. that’s a priority in my pizzas. Its all about the crust. And the vegetables on mind were endless, with peppers, onions, mushrooms, zucchini and even artichoke hearts.

It was good, and we were happy, and I didn’t have to cook!

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An Impromptu Stir-fry

For Sunday’s dinner, we both wanted anything but turkey, and nothing to do with mashed potatoes. We chose, then, to make a stir-fry. I ran through the new Super Target and picked up as many fresh, organic vegetables as I could find, including green and red peppers, carrots, zucchini, onions and mushrooms. A bit of chicken and a packet of sauce (is that really cheating) and we had dinner.

I love stir-fry’s and I’m not sure why we don’t make them more often. They’re so versatile. I’ve used pork and beef and have skipped the meat all together. I’ve used water chestnuts, or bamboo shoots, or just peppers. I guess anything could go. This would be a great dish to whip together after a trip to the farmers market. Which I terribly miss, by the way.

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By Special Request, The Good Earth.

A good friend, who moved away years ago and just refuses to move back, has a favorite restaurant in town and requested I post about it. Well, this past Saturday, Husband and I were in the neighborhood early in the morning and stopped in for breakfast. It was his first time there, and it didn’t disappoint. I rarely get there for breakfast, and was happily surprised when our server offered a “complmentary caramel bun.” Well, that’s a no brainer. We split it and then I picked up the plate and licked it. Not really, but I could have eaten another dozen of the little guys. But then, the main dish:

I chose a breakfast quesadilla, because really, you can never go wrong with a quesadilla. This one was full of eggs, black beans, tomatoes and other goodies, served with guacamole, sour cream and salsa. It was huge, and I only could down half of it. But no worries, the rest of it was gulped down a few hours later.

The Good Earth is not a vegetarian restaurant. Many people think it is, but really, its more about fresh ingredients, hormone-free meats and tasty grub. Oh, and it is vegetarian friendly, which at times can be hard to find. Its a favorite, had been for a long time. And its not fancy, but its consistent, friendly and yummers.

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Thanksgiving, Part 2.

On to the main course.

On paper, as in a recipe in a magazine, cooking a turkey sounds really easy. Start it in a hot oven, turn it down and when the dark meat is 165 degrees, pull the bird out the often, and let it rest. But what happens when the carver announces that the bird is still bleeding? I guess put a cover on the potatoes, put some foil on the yams and pour another glass of wine.

After a slight delay and a quick debate on if its safe to eat undercooked poultry, we sat down at the table. I listed the menu the other day, so I won’t bore you with it again. But the photo above shoes the Yams with Orange-Chipotle Glaze. They were good, but could have used more bit, at least they weren’t too sweet. Also in the photo are the Wasabi and Green Onion mashed potatoes. They were excellent. Potatoes, cream and butter, what could go wrong?

On the other end of the table were the roasted green beans (in a hot oven until toasty), the cranberry sauce and a cornbread stuffing with root vegetables. I really liked the stuffing because of the surprises. There were all kinds of vegetables, including carrots and parsnips and even some mushrooms. But all the flavors melded together really well.

So even after a turkey fiasco dinner was great. While cooking we were fortunate to spot a family of deer as well as a few wild turkeys. They were happy to be outside, and not in the oven.

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Thanksgiving, Part 1.

Lets start with appetizers…

It has become a bit of a tradition to make Husbands favorite, Tuna Tataki, on Thanksgiving. Its fairly simple, some ginger and sesame seeds, soy sauce, lime.. sear the tuna for just a minute and serve. I just adore raw or seared Tuna, look forward to this fabulous treat every time.

And then, of course, cheese. We had a garlic cheese, a brie, cheddar and some great smoked gouda. It always reminds my of my crazy days waiting tables at the Pannekoeken Huis. Smoked gouda and metwurst omelette? And this wine was darn good as well. Slightly fruity and very refreshing.

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Happy Turkey Day!!

I wish everyone a very, merry thanksgiving. I’ll be cooking and sipping wine and cuddling with the dog. So enjoy your day off and always have fun in the kitchen!

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I finally tried it. Bewiched.

There’s a new deli in the neighborhood, and while I’ve stopped by there many a late afternoon for one of their butter-laden oatmeal or peanut butter cookies, I haven’t truly attempted a meal. the main reason is the price. These guys have gotten a lot of press. The paper covered them last week and gave them a great review (3 of 4 stars). There are a couple of dialogues on Chow.com.

Most sandwiches fall between $9.50 and $11.50. That’s fine for dinner or on the weekend, but for an everyday lunch, it just can’t happen.

So, today I went down for soup. Co-worker has raved about the soup since the place opened, so I decided to give it a shot. There were four soup offerings today, and they all sounded good. They had their Ministrone, Tomato and Bread with Basil, Beer Cheese (that brought back memories) and Shrimp Bisque. Knowing the cheese or bisque would send me to the couch for a nap, I chose the tomato. And I was pleased.

The soup was served piping hot and was loaded with tomatoes, fresh basil, chunks of great bread and I even saw a few roasted garlic slices. And it tasted like everything I just listed. Very fresh, perfect for a quick lunch on a cold November day. And it was served with dense, crunchy bread. And I got a cookie. Peanut Butter this time.

So, yes, I recommend it. But maybe bring a friend, share one of their huge sandwiches. or go for the soup and a cookie, plenty of food and a little change in your pocket as well.

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Spelt Bread

I’ve been experimenting with alternative foods, and discovered a tasty treasure with Spelt Bread. It is really very low in wheat and gluten, so easier to digest. And the best part, is that it actually tastes like bread! I have to have peanut butter on something for breakfast almost everyday. And this spelt bread stuff is ready to tackle my Real Chunky Peanut Butter.

Here are a couple links for more information. But try it, I think you’ll be surprised.



Note: Regarding a photo of the peanut butter toast…. I ate it too fast. So, no photo. But you all know what peanut butter toast looks like, right?

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Such a fun word to say. Yam, yam, yam. I’m making them for one Thanksgiving dinner and got this response when I offered to bring them to the second Thanksgiving.

“No, Sam-I-Am, I do not like yams. I do not like them on a tram, I do not like them served with jam – I do not like them Sam-I-Am!! Sorry I couldn’t resist.”

I don’t like them served with jam either, just a bit of butter and they’re perfect. Since there are so many misconceptions about these fabulous, and ugle, vegetables, I thought I’d look up some details.

Wikipedia says,
Yams are high in Vitamin C, dietary fiber, Vitamin B6, potassium, and manganese; while being low in saturated fat, sodium, and cholesterol. Vitamin C, dietary fiber and Vitamin B6 may all promote good health[3]. Furthermore, a product that is high in potassium and low in sodium is likely to produce a good potassium-sodium balance in the human body, and so protect against osteoporosis and heart disease[4]. Having a low level of saturated fat is also helpful for protection against heart disease

I work with a woman who will just pop a yam into the microwave and eat it as is. They’re sweet, and hearty and make a fabulous meal on the go. I’m not sure why I don’t bring them home more often, except that Husband doesn’t like them. Sweet Potato’s are grown in the U.S. and are often called Yams.

I’m also a fan of Cooking Light, so here are a few recipes with yams. If you try one, let me know how it is!

Praline Banana-Yam Pudding

<!– DATA0:Sweet Potato-Pecan Pancakes
DATA5:Cooking Light
Sweet Potato-Pecan Pancakes

Yam Nuea Yang (Spicy Beef Salad)

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Thanksgiving Menu

There’s not much eating going on since I’ve been under the weather for the last couple days, but we did plan our thanksgiving menu, so I’ll share that since it sounds fabulous.

For an appetizer, Husbands favorite Tuna Tataki (we like Wolfgang Pucks recipe on foodnetwork.com), and my favorite, a cheese platter.

Roast Turkey with Truffle Gravy (Nov. 07 Cooking Light, page 136)

Wasabi and Green Onion Mashed Potatoes (Nov. 07 Bon Appetit, page 155)

Cornbread Stuffing with Roasted Fall Vegetables (Nov. 07 Bon Appetit, page 144)

Roasted Green Beans

Spiced Cranberry-Orange Sauce (Lund’s Real Food, Winter 2006)

Yams with Orange Chipotle Glaze (Lund’s Real Food, Winter 2007)

Good Bread with Herbed Butter

For dessert, a apple-lingonberry pie from a local bakery.

And wine, plenty of wine.

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