What's Cooking (Take Two!)

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Sat Dec 14, 2013 8:32 am

Karen, that baked spaghetti sounds wonderful.

It was cold out last night, so I warmed up with Sichuan stir-fried ground pork with hot peppers.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Sat Dec 14, 2013 10:50 am

We had a late dinner, much later than planned, so condensed. Not as in Condensed Soup, just a mix of rice and ground beef cooked together with a lot of Mexican spices served on the same plate as a simple chiffonade of romaine lightly dressed with oil and vinegar. No wine, even! At my house, it doesn't get any more basic than that.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Sun Dec 15, 2013 11:03 am

The rest of the ground pork went into last night's Beijing meat sauce noodles (tsa chaing mein).

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Wed Dec 18, 2013 4:42 pm

Tonight I'm going to barbecue pork chops which by then will have marinated for 24 hours in soy sauce, red chile oil with sugar and rosemary. I'll serve those with mashed sweet potato and a cilantro-cabbage slaw.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Wed Dec 18, 2013 9:27 pm

I love the idea of mashed sweet potato. Have you tried the Asian Yams, that are very pink skinned but white inside? Delicious. I'm doing a dinner similar to yours tomorrow night. Will post about it tomorrow.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Wed Dec 18, 2013 10:45 pm

Karen/NoCA wrote:I love the idea of mashed sweet potato. Have you tried the Asian Yams, that are very pink skinned but white inside? Delicious. I'm doing a dinner similar to yours tomorrow night. Will post about it tomorrow.


Karen, no I haven't tried those, didn't even know they existed. Will have to keep my eyes peeled for them (no pun intended). Love weird/different produce, and that stuff like the Okinawan yams (purple inside) are starting to show up in conventional grocery stores.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Rahsaan » Wed Dec 18, 2013 11:27 pm

Karen/NoCA wrote:I love the idea of mashed sweet potato. Have you tried the Asian Yams, that are very pink skinned but white inside? Delicious. I'm doing a dinner similar to yours tomorrow night. Will post about it tomorrow.


I also really enjoy mashed sweet potatoes with mixing and matching the various kinds of sweet potatoes. The flavor from a mixed batch can be great, although depending on which kinds are used the color can get a bit 'grey'. And some of the Asian varieties tend towards a 'gluey' texture. Still, sweet potatoes are one of the best parts of winter!
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Thu Dec 19, 2013 12:05 pm

Rahsaan wrote:
Karen/NoCA wrote:I love the idea of mashed sweet potato. Have you tried the Asian Yams, that are very pink skinned but white inside? Delicious. I'm doing a dinner similar to yours tomorrow night. Will post about it tomorrow.


I also really enjoy mashed sweet potatoes with mixing and matching the various kinds of sweet potatoes. The flavor from a mixed batch can be great, although depending on which kinds are used the color can get a bit 'grey'. And some of the Asian varieties tend towards a 'gluey' texture. Still, sweet potatoes are one of the best parts of winter!


I love mixing potato and sweet potato, too. A single garnet yam blended into a larger quantity of classic russet turns the mash super-super silky and the prettiest shade of coral.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Thu Dec 19, 2013 9:13 pm

Tonight is flank steak which has been marinating since yesterday morning in wine, oo,garlic, fresh oregano, ancho chile powder, lemon juice, green onions, little brn. sugar, s & p and will be grilled to less than medium rare and sliced very thin. Two sides, a Asian yam, rubbed with coconut oil, baked and served with black truffle butter. Coleslaw, red and green, cabbage, fresh corn kernels, fresh cilantro, shredded carrot, fresh jalapeño, orange bell pepper, red onion, all sliced very thin. Dressing is veg. oil,rice vinegar, honey, fresh lime juice, sea salt, and freshly ground multi-colored peppercorns. This is dressed about 2 hours before serving.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Sat Dec 21, 2013 3:16 pm

I butterflied a chicken this morning, it is sitting in lemon juice/zest, evoo, fresh rosemary, thyme, fresh garlic, s & p. It will be broiled on each side until golden, then roasted to finish. We have fresh lemons from our tree again, and I like to roast lemon halves along with the chicken to drizzle over the chicken before eating.
Two sides, accordion, Yukon Gold potatoes, stuffed with a bay leaf, thyme springs and sprinkled with rosemary. A drizzle of evoo and butter over the top, then baked. Baby zucchini sautéed with Serrano, sweet Italian and jalapeño peppers.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Sat Dec 21, 2013 8:46 pm

I picked up three Dungeness crabs a couple of hours ago that were killed, cracked, and cleaned by the fish guy. I was going to just boil them up for dinner tonight, but we were invited to have supper with friends just now, so I will have to try something different. I found a recipe on Epicurious in which you take cooked crab and roast it ina very hot oven until heated through with butter, garlic, thyme, and shallots. You pull the crab out and then make a quick pan sauce with a little orange juice and orange zest. I'll probably boil up the crab shortly and then do this recipe tomorrow. Not quite as simple as the boiled crab I was going to do, but not too elaborate either.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Sun Dec 22, 2013 1:20 am

Mike Filigenzi wrote:I picked up three Dungeness crabs a couple of hours ago that were killed, cracked, and cleaned by the fish guy. I was going to just boil them up for dinner tonight, but we were invited to have supper with friends just now, so I will have to try something different. I found a recipe on Epicurious in which you take cooked crab and roast it ina very hot oven until heated through with butter, garlic, thyme, and shallots. You pull the crab out and then make a quick pan sauce with a little orange juice and orange zest. I'll probably boil up the crab shortly and then do this recipe tomorrow. Not quite as simple as the boiled crab I was going to do, but not too elaborate either.

Not sure I understand the crab you bought as killed, cracked and cleaned......the you were going to boil them????? Crab is brought into Redding everyday from the coast, 2 1/2 hours away. It is cooked, then put on ice. When they are sold, they are cleaned by the fish guy, wrapped and sent home with you. At home, we crack it, for our guests and serve. Then it is picked by all of us, and gobbled up. :D FWIW, you can use eat crab the very next day as planned the first day. It holds quite well. Gene's dad was a commercial fisherman after retirement and actually a few years before. We are old time crab eaters, and if it is very fresh will hold for two or three days, and is still excellent. Beware of those who sell it previously frozen, I can tell, and call them on it. :evil:
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Sun Dec 22, 2013 3:27 am

Karen/NoCA wrote:Not sure I understand the crab you bought as killed, cracked and cleaned......the you were going to boil them????? Crab is brought into Redding everyday from the coast, 2 1/2 hours away. It is cooked, then put on ice. When they are sold, they are cleaned by the fish guy, wrapped and sent home with you. At home, we crack it, for our guests and serve. Then it is picked by all of us, and gobbled up. :D FWIW, you can use eat crab the very next day as planned the first day. It holds quite well. Gene's dad was a commercial fisherman after retirement and actually a few years before. We are old time crab eaters, and if it is very fresh will hold for two or three days, and is still excellent. Beware of those who sell it previously frozen, I can tell, and call them on it. :evil:


These were live at the fish market. I could have taken them home that way but the people I bought them from will crack and clean them for you for free. I decided to let them do that part of the job.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Christina Georgina » Sun Dec 22, 2013 6:53 pm

Lovely salad - pink grapefruit, avocado, pomegranate, green onion tops dressed with lime juice a bit of oil, pinch of palm sugar and cumin. Very seasonal looking and wonderful flavors
Mamma Mia !
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Mon Dec 23, 2013 7:27 pm

Christina Georgina wrote:Lovely salad - pink grapefruit, avocado, pomegranate, green onion tops dressed with lime juice a bit of oil, pinch of palm sugar and cumin. Very seasonal looking and wonderful flavors


Sounds wonderful. I'm a super big fan of avocado and citrus fruit.

Last Saturday night was our neighborhood wine group's annual Christmas dinner. For 40. I made one of the sit-down courses (there were three), while others did the rest and all of the appetizers. But I was the HFIC, so I also bought all the wine, all the door prizes, hired kitchen staff and pulled together other volunteers for setup, décor, tablescape, menus, sound system etc, and was both emcee and kitchen manager/expediter throughout. By Sunday, about all I could muster for dinner was something super simple like baked potato and salad. I really wanted chicken and noodles, but didn't have time to make it--so that's tonight.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Paul Winalski » Mon Dec 23, 2013 9:10 pm

I'm going with a totally untraditional Christmas dinner this year: Cajun andouille and chicken gumbo. Starters beforehand will be pate with truffles on toast, with a grand cru Burgundy to accompany. Probably vintage Port and a local New England blue cheese for afters.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Tue Dec 24, 2013 4:05 am

Christmas Eve dinner is all seafood: clams on the half shell, crab and shrimp cocktail, lobster ravioli with saffron cream sauce.

Christmas Day dinner is traditional: starter of endive with blue cheese and walnuts, then a roast goose served with Cumberland sauce, roast acorn squash and mixed basmati/wild rice. English pudding, a pear tart, and chocolate-orange ice cream for dessert. Kingston Black cider and riesling to go with.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jenise » Tue Dec 24, 2013 5:14 am

Jeff and Paul, your dinners sound fantastic.

We're throwing in our lot with another couple with whom we've never spent a night under the same roof. A little scary, but they're lovely people--both liberal, both super-skilled cooks and both besotted animal parents, so we have a lot in common. Christmas Eve is going to be Italian--she's doing pasta with some kind of sausage sauce and I'm throwing in a white asparagus antipasti with shrimp. Christmas Day, dinner will be a roast prime rib for which I'm providing a bread pudding (Mike F's leek/mushroom recipe from many years ago), a nutmeg & horseradish scented spinach/kale gratin, and an early course of foie gras torchon. I'm also doing a breakfast--a chile relleno pie based on Ines's from last weekend, which I loved, but made with chorizo.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Tue Dec 24, 2013 1:25 pm

Dungeness crab feed tonight with good friends.... tomorrow night is prime rib with all our favorite sides to go with it. Tomorrow morning is our taditional Royal gin fizzes while opening presents around the tree....after breakfast, of course....which will be light, just fresh fruits and home made muffins. Merry Christmas to all of you.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Jeff Grossman/NYC » Tue Dec 24, 2013 2:32 pm

Wow, two of you making prime rib. I didn't know it was still so popular.

I like the idea of a white asparagus and shrimp appetizer. How will you dress it?
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Tue Dec 24, 2013 7:24 pm

It is very popular on the west coast and has been for as long as I have known. Our butcher cuts off the bones, then ties them back on for anyone who asks. Makes it very easy to cut and serve. I keep the bones to use along with other bones to make a beef stock for Julia Child's French Onion Soup...her classic version. I like to make it right after the first of the year.
We are having asparagus too, both white and green. It makes such a pretty dish. This year, I am steaming them, add a dressing to marinate and serve them cold. Makes for an easy and delicious side dish. A little sprinkle of sweet paprika is pretty on the colors too.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Mike Filigenzi » Thu Dec 26, 2013 2:25 am

I thought about doing prime rib for tonight's meal but I've found it to be way too fatty for my taste in the past. I ended up getting a New York strip. The plan was to roast that and serve it with a potato gratin and cauliflower tossed in EVOO and parmigiano and roasted. The English woman who's staying with us (Victoria) wanted to do their version of pigs in a blanket, which is pork sausage links wrapped in bacon and tossed in the oven until browned. Everything came out very nicely, and a 2004 Cedarville cab went beautifully with the roast.

Unfortunately, around 1 PM my wife was hit by an express train of a stomach virus. Fever, nausea, the whole nine yards. She was in no shape for supper, which is too bad because the menu was pretty much designed around her tastes. I may have to re-create it in a couple of days.

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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Karen/NoCA » Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:50 pm

I had some very meaty lamb shanks in the freezer, so I made a ham and Anasazi bean soup this morning. Cooked the shanks (with onion, carrot, celery, peppercorns, bay leaves) yesterday so I could remove the congealed fat today. Beans were so fresh, they cooked in about an hour in the strained ham stock. Added carrots, potato, onion, celery, lots of garlic, thyme sprigs, and bay leaf, and will add celery leaves at the end of the cooking time. Will serve with a sprinkle of fennel pollen. A salad with greens from the garden, ruby red grapefruit sections, avocado, French Tarragon, spring onions, with a light champagne vinaigrette.
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Re: What's Cooking (Take Two!)

Postby Carl Eppig » Sat Dec 28, 2013 4:47 pm

We have Jacob's Cattle Beans baking in the oven as I type. Will match with some leftover day after Christmas ham, and salad. Will wash all down with lotsa ale! Should make for a noisy evening.
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