Sunday, January 9, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 7 and 8

Last night, Johnny kept going on and on about how well put together dinner was... an artichoke pasta finished with sherry and porcini butter. Yes, it was.

Sunday night, I made an Olsen Farms rack of lamb (WOW) seared and slathered in mustard and seasoned breadcrumbs and baked at 450 for 20 minutes. Too rare for J.

On the side: Brilliant puzzle. What is it? I asked Johnny. Apples? he guessed. Pears? Nope, not even close. Salsify. A stunning recipe from my friend Martha Foose from her upcoming book, A Southerly Course, which I love at least as much, if not a little more --- no, wait, I cannot pick a favorite --- than her James Beard-award-winning debut, Screen Doors and Sweet Tea. I was there in New York City the night Ms. Martha won and my deep regret is that I did not go out with her to celebrate. Next time for sure!!

I truly believe salsify is going to blow up big. Try it! It's like a parsnip on steroids. YUM!!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 6

This is the most ridiculously easy recipe based on a signature dish from my late mother-in-law. I almost feel like a cheat doing it because it comes out so dang delicious with so little effort.

I've promised to share the recipe with my daughter, who is starting to get into cooking... finally. I was the world's worst teacher. No warm and fuzzy moments in the kitchen. So, we'll try some long-distance lessons.

Dorothy's Beef Burgundy

2 pounds boneless chuck, cut into generous chunks
1 shallot, diced
1/3 cup flour
1/2 pound mushrooms, washed and quartered
1 tablespoon herbs de province
2 tablespoons salt/pepper (one each, then later taste and adjust... I also used truffle salt toward the end)
1 bottle red wine

Put the prepared beef and shallots into a Dutch oven. Sprinkle flour and seasonings on top. Pour in bottle of wine. Bake in 350 degree oven for three hours. Add mushrooms. Taste and adjust seasonings at this point. Bake an additional 30 minutes. Serve with buttered noodles or mashed potatoes.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 5

It's been so cold. I know, it's winter. Anyway, I decided to make a chicken/pumpkin curry with stock I made from leftover roast bird from Monday.

Only hitch: No chutney in the pantry! So, I made some quick pickle Granny Smiths and all was swell. Topped with slivered almonds and toasted coconut.

It made up for the disaster earlier in the day. I ruined a batch of brownies. Distracted, I added baking soda to the butter/sugar/egg mixture instead of sifting it into the flour and cocoa and the pan looked like a science experiment gone wrong.

Bummer. But I'm going to get back on that brownie bandwagon again soon. Maybe tomorrow.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 4

Made oyster po' boys last night. Which was accomplished in record time because Johnny and I went to see The Fighter and got home after 7. Sitting down by 7:30.

I totally love the Louisiana Fish Fry. It's perfectly seasoned and fries up super crisp. Use it for catfish, too.

Dressed these sandwiches in duck egg mayo, sliced tomatoes, shredded savoy cabbage on a hoagie roll. I wish the bread was better, softer. But pretty pleased with how it turned out.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 2 and 3

Made white bean minestrone Monday night with greens from the farmers market. Cooked the beans in Nana's bean pot. I like doing them that way because they stay intact. I added a little liquid smoke to the pot since I was going vegan with this batch of soup.

On Tuesday, I roasted a Stokesberry Farms chicken. It cost nearly $20, but it was really good: moist, flavorful, not fatty. I've got some stock simmering with the leftovers. I sure do love soup this time of year!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Dinner Diary, Part 1

Geez Louise!

Haven't posted anything since August, and yet... my comment box continues to fill up with spam.

So, I've decided to post a pic of my dinner making efforts. This might sound like a lot of navel gazing. Oh, lookie what I can do. But, honestly, it's about keeping a record of my efforts.

Last night, it was fried catfish, roasted fingerlings and Asian slaw. Oh, and homemade tartar sauce made with duck egg mayo. So good.

Oh, and did I mention, I'm available for doing some personal cheffing. I have references. And photos, of course.