Sunday, March 29, 2009

Beef Strogan-zola

We made this Emeril recipe for "Beefy Mushroom Gorgonzola Sauce." It was a cross between a Stroganoff and a creamy Gorgonzola sauce. Probably not very good for us, but damn delicious, and used up lots of things we had lying around: one last sprig of rosemary, a pound of CSA mushrooms, some gorgonzola cheese, the rest of the cream and beef stock...

Friday, March 27, 2009

Cookies n' Cream Cupcakes

Cookies and cream cupcakes, made per Tim's request. The frosting kinda looked like mud in the end, but it tasted pretty damn good!


Last night we had Mom's BBQ pulled pork sandwiches for dinner (mmmmmm), and this morning, Chuck, Tim and I all have the day off, so I made hash with the leftovers. I used regular and purple potatoes, an onion, and eggs fried over easy from my CSA, sprinkled with cilantro. Finally, we topped it with some of the leftover BBQ sauce. Pretty damn good.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Lovin' the latkes.

These honey-ginger carrot & parsnip latkes are the BOMB! I made them out of necessity (many carrots and parsnips came in this week's CSA share), but ultimately, with the addition of some great applesauce and some sour cream, they were totally worth it.

Also, the perfectly cooked pork tenderloin wasn't too bad either ;-) Made on my double-burner cast iron grill pan.

If you're wondering about the lack of green veggies in this meal, don't fret. We had big green salads using the baby greens from the CSA. They just didn't make the photo...

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Sticky Buns!

Mmmm... sticky buns! Care of my favorite (and only) bread book.

Green eggs, no ham.

I had a craving for this egg recipe that I had when I visited Liz in Atlanta. This Rachael Ray recipe seemed reasonably close to what I remembered, and it was. Pretty good overall, but I think I liked the restaurant's version better. I finally remembered the name of the restaurant, the Flying Biscuit, and it turns out they have the recipe online! I think the feta is key, rather than the cheddar that Rachael calls for...

Monday, March 16, 2009

Pizza for Grandmother's 95th...

We made pizza for Grandmother's 95th birthday. We used the dough recipe from ye olde bible of quick and easy bread-making, and improvised with our own toppings. Martha discovered how to not slide the pizza off onto the pizza stone (the key is low angle and small shimmy-shakes, NOT high angle and giant shove, which makes a calzone-like pile of dough and toppings, and sends the olives flying). They came out great, everybody loved them.

White pizza with marinated artichokes, mushrooms, prosciutto and kalamata olives (on mine, Theresa's and Martha's, at least).

Red pizza with Italian sausage and mushrooms (on half).

Butter-braised Turnips = Double Meh

I thought that the method of preparation might make up for the fact that I'm not enamored of turnips thus far... butter-braised? Seemed like a winner, but again, no dice. Meh. I just think I just plain don't like turnips, officially.

Asian Dumpling Soup = Meh.

Made this soup to use some cabbage, garlic greens and mushrooms from the CSA. Meh.

We spiced it up a bunch with soy sauce, ginger, and Sriracha, but no dice. Still meh.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Adjusting the San Diego house color scheme

So... the San Diego kitchen remodel has launched a number of tangential projects , including building the new fence/gate at the end of the driveway and installing an on-demand, tankless water heater.

This week's offshoot was to change the color scheme of the house paint. "Autumn Bark" is now being applied to the roof eaves (after a failed attempt with "Sedona at Sunset" which resulted in what looked like a visit from the Great Pumpkin) and "Saguaro" has been added to the blocking at the tops of the shingle fields. Digging the pop of color, which matches the front door and new fence/gate color.
Also tackled this week was repairing the sprinkler line that runs along the side of the house. The line, which supports 10-12 sprinkler heads, was removed back during the foundation dig. The plants received lots of rain during January and February, but the sun is back out and supplementary water was in order.
The soundtrack to this week's projects was "Tonight" by Franz Ferdinand.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Salmon Eggs Benedict with Blender Hollandaise Sauce

A "cleanin' out the overcrowded fridge" breakfast made with smoked salmon leftover from a birthday party Jennifer went to last weekend, english muffins we always have hanging around, eggs, dill from the Aerogarden and an easy hollandaise sauce made in the blender.

The blender hollandaise is from a recipe I found in the Washington Post food section several years ago. As far as hollandaise goes, it's very lemony, but pretty easy, relatively speaking- less stirring and watching to make sure it doesn't break. The lemon flavor went especially well with the salmon and dill.

Blender Hollandaise Sauce

Makes 1 cup

Make sure the egg yolks, lemon juice and hot pepper sauce are at room temperature; otherwise, the sauce could turn out too thin. If it is too thick, add warm water by droplets with the blender on low.
Adapted from "The Blender Cookbook" by Ann Seranne (Doubleday, 1961).

6 oz (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter
3 egg yolks, room temp
2 TBS lemon juice
1 tsp hot pepper sauce, such as Tabasco
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp freshly ground black pepper

In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, heat the butter for about 2 minutes, until it is bubbling (do not let the butter brown).

Place the remaining ingredients in a blender and blend on high speed to mix well.

With machine running, pour the hot melted butter into the yolk mixture in a slow, steady stream through the hole in the blender lid.

When all the butter has been incorporated, the sauce is done. It should have the consistency of a creamy salad dressing. Serve immediately.

Greek turkey burgers!

Mmm... this is the second time I've made these turkey burgers, very loosely based on Rachael Ray's Spanikopita burgers. Here's what I did (approximately, since I was throwing stuff in without measuring both times I made the burgers):

Makes 4 fat burgers

1 lb ground turkey
olive oil for sauteeing
some onion, chopped (about 1/2 C)
2 cloves of garlic
half a bag of baby spinach (you could use frozen spinach, too, if that's what you have- drain it)
1 egg
some dried oregano (1 tsp)
salt and pepper
handful of breadcrumbs (about 1/3 C)
1/2 C feta cheese, crumbled
1/3 cup kalamata olives, finely chopped

- sautee the onions in olive oil until soft, add garlic after a few minutes
- throw in spinach, sautee until wilted, turn off heat
- put turkey in a large bowl
- throw everything else in with the turkey, mix with your hands
- form into 4 large burgers
- sautee the burgers in a teeny bit of olive oil (Rachael said 5 minutes per side, but mine took a lot longer for some reason)

Serve on toasted buns with a greek yogurt sauce. For my yogurt sauce, I combined the yogurt with salt and pepper, some fresh lemon juice, and dill and mint from the Aerogarden. I made homemade buns/rolls with the dough I had sitting in the fridge.

Jennifer makes Giada's raviolis

Jennifer made some tasty raviolis with leftover roast chicken and Giada's recipe. Pain in the ass to roll out, but good flavor! She got to use her nifty ravioli press, which she was quite excited about.

Also served: homemade baguette with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dip and spinach salad with bacon and eggs.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

I like turtles.

Turtle brownies
... 'nuff said.

Deliciously local...

Yum... spinach, beet, goat cheese, walnut and dried cranberry salad. This is our new standard salad. Even better with chopped apples instead of the cranberries. With balsamic vinaigrette.

Homemade bread and local sharp cheddar cheese from Whispering Brook Cheese Haus, grilled. Mmm.

Curried parsnip soup with apples... parsnips and apples care of my CSA.
Only 4 1/2 more blocks to go...will do in Jamaica

Batch number 3 for '09 up to around 2+ gallons.