30 March 2016

The Weirdest Salad I Ever Loved ...

Up til just a few years ago, you couldn't pay me to put a Brussels sprout in my mouth. No offense to my Mom, but she'd ruined the little cabbage for me. Her one and only method of preparation was to boil the heck out of the poor things until they resembled khaki bits of Army fatigues and serve them plain as can be with a pat of margarine and some salt and pepper. She also always bought the biggest (and thus more bitter) sprouts she could get. Why, I'll never know. Consequently, this little vegetable made it real fast to my shortlist of BLECCH!

It was SB who turned my attitude around. Oh, and Yotam Ottolenghi. SB showed me how to roast Brussels sprouts. YO showed me how to dress them up all pretty and sweet.

29 March 2016

Indian Lamb Curry

Yesterday's Easter lamb roast got lush treatment today! An intense curry powder preparation made its way through the grinder and waited to be melded with onions, garlic, and ginger. The lamb roast was cut into chunks and braised slowly in a broth of oil, chicken stock, tomatoes, and all those onions and aromatics! The house smells divine! We'll have to air it out for two days to get the curry aroma to dissipate! Right now, though, it's heavenly!

28 March 2016

An Aside ...

I got my steamer out the other day.

I cut little rounds out of these square won ton noodle wraps.

I lined the steamer trays with lettuce leaves.

And then, I made pork dumplings.

Yup. A tray for me and a tray for SB. We had an Asian feeding frenzy.

26 March 2016

A Quiet Saturday Morning and Hot Cross Buns

All week long, I've tried to make these traditional rolls ... it's just been one thing after another and tangled schedules that have kept me from the kitchen work table and oven. But ... this morning ... it was an enforced quiet that made me stop. Stop. SB left early on for a men's breakfast at our little church. The dogs napped in the sun and I found myself smack dab between the darkness of Good Friday and the joy of Easter Sunday.

It was time to make the batch of hot cross buns ... a spicier batch than I've made in the past ... big ones. Buns large enough for a cup of tea or coffee. Buns that won't disappear in a couple bites.

24 March 2016

Nigel Slater's Chicken, Olives, and Lemons

Tucked in under all those olives, onions, lemon and saffron are the juiciest chicken thighs ! They spent the day in a spicy marinade paste that consists of a boatload of smashed garlic, cumin seeds, smoked paprika, turmeric, sea salt, black pepper and olive oil. Oh boy! Can't you just smell the kitchen while these cook?

21 March 2016

Spicy Pimento Macaroni & Cheese !

Ask any of my old friends, ask any of my family members and they will have to nod in agreement when I tell you that I LOVE macaroni & cheese. I LOVE IT! Like so many of us, it's been the comfort food choice for years. When I'm strapped to find a dinner menu I want to make, I fall back on a mac&cheese casserole. When it's midnight and I'm having the 'drank booze have the munchie blues', I whip up a pan of stove top mac&cheese. When my kids were young and worshiped the ' Kraft blue box' mac&cheese, I indulged them. Over the years, I've gotten a neat list of good macaroni & cheese recipes that have everything from lobster to cauliflower to bacon added to zing the casserole up a bit!