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Leftover salad and vinaigrette
Baked chicken drumsticks
Anson Mills Sea Island red peas over leftover brown rice
Braised kale with carrot, onions, and jalapeno

I'd had the peas in the freezer for 11 years or, rather, that's when I first purchased them and put them in the freezer. Previously -- also quite a long time ago -- I had cooked some of them. This used the rest of the package. I followed a recipe from the Anson Mills site but served them over brown rice I had already cooked rather than the grits it called for. Kale seemed like a good accompaniment, so chopped up a bunch I had stored away in the crisper and threw it into a pot with a diced sauteed jalapeno and some water. At the end I cut up and mixed in the onion and carrot that had been cooked with the peas (which the recipe called for discarding -- GAH! ūü§®).

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My husband made baguettes for the first time so that we could have banh mi and they were fantastic.  We used this recipe and it definitely was a good one: https://www.vietworldkitchen.com/blog/2007/05

Dinner party tonight: Hors D'oeuvre Homemade Cold-Smoked Salmon, Creme Fraiche, Home-baked Pumpernickel Julia Child's Chicken Liver Mousse [an outrageous recipe--heavy cream, a whole stick of butte

Tonight was vegan night at Casa TrelayneNYC and I'm snacking on some chilled diced pineapple as I type this... The first two pictures are approx. 1 kg of wild and cultivated mushrooms.

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Sourdough boule with butter
Sliced tomatoes and avocado, crumbled bacon, Caesar dressing
Leftover arugula and Parmesan ravioli with lemon butter and baby arugula
Mushroom, mozzarella, and arugula stuffed chicken breasts

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Caprese salad
Sourdough baguette
Leftover chicken drumsticks
Zucchini strata
Roasted broccoli

Periodically I go from being breadless to having an overabundance. Yesterday we ate a lot of various forms of bread. The strata, an Ottolenghi recipe, was excellent. Between a milk/cream mix and half a dozen eggs, this has a lovely puff, and there's a browned Parmesan crust on top. My arm got quite a workout between grating the 3/4 cup Parmesan and two zucchini for the strata. There is a lot of this left.

I roasted the broccoli during part of the strata cooking time, and heated the drumsticks on the broccoli pan for the last 10-15 minutes. I used a deep red heirloom tomato in the salad, which I thought was quite artfully arranged. The cheese pieces for that were bocconcini rather than full size mozzarella balls. I made little sandwiches out of some of the salad components. The baguette, from Souk, was perfectly executed. It's a shame that baguettes are only at perfection for a short time because there's a lot of that left too.

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Baby arugula, tomato, pickled cucumber, bacon; mustard - tomato vinaigrette
Cheddar-jalapeno bread
Blue corn tortilla chips
Guacamole
Baked breaded chicken thighs
Green beans almondine

The bread came from Souk. Their breads we have tried (3) have been great. This is the second loaf of this and it is fantastic. The jalapenos are super hot. I'm wondering if they pickle them in house.

I hadn't made guacamole in quite a while because I've been having trouble finding decent avocados. They've been terrible for months (either that or I should be grateful that avocados are where I'm having my bad luck...). I bought a bag of the little ones last time I was at Trader Joe's, even though I normally buy full size. They were and continued to be rock hard and I figured it was more of the same luck. Then they slowly started to soften and the ones I've opened have been really good quality.

Green beans boiled for a bit, then drained and tossed into a skillet with hot butter and toasted sliced almonds so everything could be mixed together for a minute, plus a generous squirt of lemon juice. The beans were from Wednesday's Watkins Market, which I hadn't been to in a long time.

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After a week off from cooking, last night was pork loin from WF, brined and cooked low-and-slow on the charcoal grill, slathered with a little bottled bbq sauce for the last 15 minutes or so of roasting. The result was pleasantly smoky and still moist. Vegetables were grilled zucchini, sweet onions, and Roma tomatoes. Being lazy, I pulled out a box of "Far East" brown rice pilaf that had been hiding in the back of the cupboard for some time. My 2 dining companions were OK with it but I thought it was pretty bad -- the wages of sloth (in fairness, I think their mushroom-flavored version is decent).

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Tonight was leftovers (more of the salad from last night + homemade croutons; green beans almondine; roasted broccoli; and, stuffed chicken breast) and noodles and cheese, which is an Armenian casserole that is just what it sounds like. I made the variant with cottage cheese, which is how my MIL has always made it (there's another with feta). The other cheese is muenster. Egg noodles. Butter. Eggs. Parsley.

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Salad (romaine, tomato, cucumber, red bell pepper, avocado; Caesar dressing)
Cheddar - jalapeno bread
Turkey meatballs
Eggplant Parmesan
Egg noodles with basil, Parmesan, and evoo

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I didn't feel like cooking last night, so got some frozen chicken breasts out of the freezer, put them in the Instant Pot along with some BBQ sauce, apple cider vinegar and Worcestershire sauce for 25 min.  Hubby made mashed potatoes and dinner was served. 

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With 4 lbs. of shrimp and no empty freezer space to speak of, I'm on a quest to use shrimp quickly. The first pound or so of them got boiled with Old Bay and tossed into a skillet mix of old and new: white rice, black beans, pulled pork, jalape√Īo, yellow heirloom tomato, onion, Cholula sauce, and scallions. It was really good!

We also had corn on the cob.

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On 8/16/2020 at 9:00 AM, Pat said:

Periodically I go from being breadless to having an overabundance. Yesterday we ate a lot of various forms of bread. The strata, an Ottolenghi recipe, was excellent.

I was working on freezer taming today. All the stock components became stock and got canned. And some of the leftover bread and frozen cooked chicken, and a bunch of other random stuff became strata. Which then went back into the freezer, but at least now it is in the ready to eat section rather than the DO something with this section.

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On 8/16/2020 at 9:47 PM, Pat said:

I hadn't made guacamole in quite a while because I've been having trouble finding decent avocados. They've been terrible for months (either that or I should be grateful that avocados are where I'm having my bad luck...). I bought a bag of the little ones last time I was at Trader Joe's, even though I normally buy full size. They were and continued to be rock hard and I figured it was more of the same luck. Then they slowly started to soften and the ones I've opened have been really good quality.

A number of years ago, after a run like that, I gave up on mainstream stores for avocados. Now, I only get them at central American stores, and have MUCH better luck.

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9 hours ago, saf said:

A number of years ago, after a run like that, I gave up on mainstream stores for avocados. Now, I only get them at central American stores, and have MUCH better luck.

In my opinion, the best avocados are from Mexico and California. The season for Mexican avocados runs from end of summer til May. Now this season we find mostly Peruvian avocados which I find to be inferior- often totally unripe until they ripen after a week or so and then often have large rotten areas or those nasty small fibrous brown spots.

The Peruvian avocado supply is relatively new to US. About a dozen years ago I travelled with a group of college students to Peru and we met with some agricultural minister who purported to have found a way to export perfectly ripe avocados.My experience has been that he over promised.

Check the label on the avocado. the Mexican avocados will hopefully be back in the market soon

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One of the avocados still has never ripened. I don't think it's going to, but the batch over all was good. I had been seeing comments from other people online that they were having problems finding decent avocados too. It seemed to be a California issue. There's so much going on out there and the US economy is so dependent on the state, I won't be surprised if it affects numerous agricultural products going forward. The avocados I see that have labeling are almost always California or Mexico. The one I noticed from Peru was not very good.

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Last night's dinner:

Shrimp with homemade cocktail sauce
Whole wheat spaghetti with basil, tomatoes, walnuts, zucchini, salmon, fresh mozzarella, and Parmesan
Leftover zucchini strata

The spaghetti was based on a Geoffrey Zakarian recipe. I added salmon (broiled wild sockeye) and mozzarella (boccacini) because I had them.

I went heavy on the lemon making the cocktail sauce and got the balance just right. I boiled the shrimp in Old Bay again. I never use Old Bay, yet I have it on hand. This has proved to be a good use of it.

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Tonight we had what I'm calling a "steakhouse dinner":
Caprese salad over chopped romaine (heirloom tomato, boccocini, basil, and All-Purpose Italian vinaigrette)  
Shrimp with lemon and cocktail sauce
Broiled prime NY strip steak
Baked potatoes with sour cream
Lemon basil wax beans

The aging romaine needed to be used, so the Caprese was assembled on top of it. Added a crunch element ^_^. The dressing was leftover from our All-Purpose pizza and salad takeout meal.

More shrimp boiled with Old Bay. Steak from Costco, same as the shrimp.

Potatoes from TJ's, and that was the best baked potato I've had in ages. They weren't baking through properly, so I kind of gave up on them. This was my first attempt in a long time, and it was successful. I love baked potatoes so this was an outsized victory.

Tomato and the wax beans from the Deep Roots Farm at the Wednesday Watkins farmers market. The beans were boiled as far as tender-crisp, drained, and mixed with lots of lemon juice, a little butter, and all the remaining bits of basil that weren't up to being in the beautiful saladūüôÉ.

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Following the lead of many of you on this thread, I have been trying to eat things out of the freezer and the pantry. The box of couscous in the pantry had expired in 2018. Oops. I made the couscous with chicken stock, lemon juice, and basil. It was fine. I use it as a base for a bunch of sautéed vegetables with Kalamata olives. I had squash, celery, red pepper, and onion, which I seasoned with garlic, salt, pepper, basil and thyme. It was a pretty plate, and a very nice dinner.  

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Saturday

Prime NY Strips from Sam's  Very

Green Beans from local farmer market charred with grill pan

2013 Elyse Cabernet.  My wife and I thought this was too thin for our taste.  Not bold and deep 

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Yesterday we continued the freezer taming, grilling a roast that had been frozen for too long, along with a bunch of farm market veg. We can grill eggplant for boba ganoush well, but eggplant medallions are never as good as we want. Corn on the cob on the other hand, so good grilled. Oh, and salad. And a cake from David Lebowitz's blog, half size, with the odds and ends of plums and blackberries left from other projects, with some brown sugar vanilla ice cream. Cheap Argentinian Malbec from Rodman's. Pretty tasty!

More freezer work tonight with Fetteh using leftover chicken, leftover pita bread and chickpeas, all from the freezer. Recipe a loose set of guidelines in this case. Salad of course too. Later there will be experimental Persian ice cream. It is supposed to have wafers with it, but I can't make those, so it will come with vanilla pizelle.

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Leftover-centric meal tonight:
Chicken mushroom noodle soup
Leftover salad with AP Italian dressing
Leftover pork shoulder roast in gravy
Leftover wax beans

The soup came from the last of the poached chicken breast and broth created by the poaching, with shiitake mushrooms, a couple kinds of onions, and dried basil and oregano.

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I made Keema Matar with ground beef, peas, diced onion, a cubed Russet potato, Passata, cinnamon, cumin, garlic, fresh grated ginger, frozen peas, curry powder, and a bit of fresh habenero from the patio garden, served over rice. Yum, glad I have leftovers!

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Been slacking off on posting, so ...

Saturday was charcoal-grilled rib eye steak with steamed fresh green beans and ?? probably simple buttered pasta. 

Sunday was grilled shrimp (cayenne, cumin, oregano, garlic) with more buttered pasta and frozen green peas with carrots.

Monday was steamed fresh asparagus, panko-crusted cod (adapted Jonathan Waxman's halibut Milanese), and orzo.

Tonight will be grilled soy-sauce-marinated Atlantic salmon, leftover pasta from Sunday, and fresh steamed broccoli.

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BLT+ salad (romaine, bacon, tomatoes, sliced steak, walnuts, banana peppers, feta; Caesar dressing)
Salmon, potato, onion, and bell pepper frittata with camembert and manchego
Turkey meatballs in tomato sauce

I had a small amount of camembert left, so I cut it in cubes and added it to the frittata mixture. Some grated manchego went onto the top after it was about 3/4 done baking. Lots of different leftover proteins in this meal.

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Takeout night! Cuban sandwich (him), pan con lechon (me), and tostones (shared) from Mi Cuba. Quite good, but the sandwiches do not travel as well as we had hoped.

Also salad.

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Tonight was the last of the shrimp, with cocktail sauce; leftover pork and bean burritos; and, couscous with salmon and peas. We also had some Chex mix I made this afternoon as a pre-dinner snack.

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Salad (romaine, tomato, cucumber, bacon, feta; vinaigrette)
Leftover steak plus red wine - mushroom sauce
Corn on the cob
Green beans

The secret to the excellent (if I do say so, myself) mushroom sauce for the steak was what was effectively (but not literally) a demi-glace made from successive rounds of cooking with what was originally the pork broth from a shoulder roast. It was thick and shiny after its gravy phase, and the remnants of that went into the skillet after I sauteed shallot and button mushrooms and then deglazed with red wine. I can't recall the last time I made a sauce for steak that came out this well.

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14 hours ago, Pat said:

The secret to the excellent (if I do say so, myself) mushroom sauce for the steak was what was effectively (but not literally) a demi-glace made from successive rounds of cooking with what was originally the pork broth from a shoulder roast.

That sounds wonderful.

Last night I made 2 margherita pizzas, following the Robert's recipe for dough that was published by the NYT a few years ago. Spinach salad for her, arugula for me.

I really shouldn't be allowed near flour. I tried to be careful, but turned the front of my black t-shirt mostly white and I'm still finding flour scattered about in various parts of the kitchen and dining room this morning. The dough turned out ok and I think I know how to improve on it next time. This is only my 4th or 5th attempt over multiple decades so I'm still making rookie mistakes -- need more practice.

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Salad (romaine, tomato, cucumber, radishes, bacon, walnuts; vinaigrette)
Savory cake with ham, cheese, and herbs
Hotdogs
Peas and carrots

The savory "cake" is from a Post recipe for a French appetizer quick bread. We had a few thin slices of it with salted butter to accompany our meal. When I went to wrap it up after dinner, damn, is this thing heavy. I had an open package of sliced ham from Trader Joe's that needed to be finished, so I think I put more ham into the bread than the recipe called for, but that doesn't account for all the heft ūüėä. My husband jokingly said I said should make this for our next cocktail party. (NB: We don't have cocktail parties even in ordinary times.) Anyhow...it's pretty good and the kind of thing I could just eat for a meal in itself.

That was only one of the breads we had with dinner. We also had hotdog buns, the top split ones from TJ's to go with the excellent A&H kosher hot dogs they sell.  Bread #3: sourdough croutons for the salad.

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Salad (baby arugula, walnuts, nectarine, tomato, shaved Comte cheese, croutons; vinaigrette)
Hamburgers on brioche buns (with Swiss and mushrooms)
Roasted beets
Sumac and hot pepper roasted broccoli

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Bouranee Kadu - afghan "pumpkin" with garlic yogurt sauce. CSA sent me a biggish kabocha squash and I remembered how much I liked this dish when I had it years ago at Afghan Grill in Woodley Park. I googled and found 2 slightly different recipes. Turned out rather good - lightly fried the squash, then added spices and tomatos to make a curry like sauce...finally stirred up some salted plain yogurt with minced garlic and drizzled the garlic sauce on top and sprinkled with chopped mint. I kind of picked and chose between the 2 recipes I found and failed to follow one of my cardinal cooking rules - always pick the one with onions. It would have been better with less water in the sauce and some sauteed onions.

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I've been reading yet another Andrea Camilleri inspector Montalbano novel which led to a craving for pasta with seafood. So last night was linguine with scallops, red pepper flakes, garlic, Italian parsley and lemon juice. Not bad, but I should have added some lemon zest into the mix, which would have better balanced the flavors. The vegetable was a melange of asparagus, sautéed creminis, and grape tomatoes.

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Tonight we had more of the savory ham and cheese bread (slices of it heat up really nicely in a 300F oven), along with this pasta recipe from Food 52, and green beans almondine.  The combination of the three foods was an even better  menu than I had anticipated.

The pasta, with ricotta and milk as the base for a creamy sauce, was really good. I had some trouble with the bread crumbs clumping up, but otherwise, no problems. I added a little extra garlic and more than a pinch of lemon zest. Will definitely make again.

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Roasted beet and baby arugula salad with crumbled feta; white balsamic vinaigrette
Slices of savory ham and cheese bread with butter
Chimichurri chicken thighs
Cheesy scalloped potatoes
Leftover corn
Leftover roasted broccoli

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Last night was dinner from the freezer - eggplant parm, and of course, salad. And garlic bread. And more blackberry dessert.

Tonight will be another use up freezer stuff dinner. Frozen beef from previous grilling, sliced up to make stroganoff, mushrooms from this week's farm market, with noodles. And of course, salad. And the final pieces of blackberry dessert. I shall miss the blackberry dessert. It is SO good.

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On 9/1/2020 at 8:50 PM, Pat said:

this pasta recipe from Food 52

The photo of the dish on that page is enough to motivate me want to make it.

Last night was mediocre take-out sushi -- better than no sushi?ūü§Ē

Tonight I was planning to grill hamburgers but then the storms starting rolling through our 'hood just before dinner time. Fortunately, halibut was on sale at whole-paycheck and I scored two nice loin pieces which I prepared with a sauce Grenobloise (ok, lemon-caper-butter sauce -- I don't have many opportunities to use my high school French). Leftover linguini with scallop sauce and steamed fresh green beans rounded out the meal.

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14 minutes ago, dwt said:

The photo of the dish on that page is enough to motivate me want to make it.

It looked quite a bit like that. The bread crumbs and creamy sauce made it look somewhat like carbonara.

The halibut plus the linguine and scallops sounds great. Green beans have been looking good lately. I just bought more at the farmers market yesterday.

Tonight:
Italian wedding soup
Baked chicken drumsticks
Mashed cauliflower with herb butter and lemon creme fraiche
Leftover green bean almondine

I used turkey (plain ground and sausage) for the soup. It's basically Ina Garten's recipe except using turkey instead of two kinds of chicken. I used ditalini for the pasta.

The mashed cauliflower was awesome, much richer and more caloric than many other cauliflower preparations I could have chosen:ph34r:, but awesome. I had some leftover lemon creme fraiche I had made to go with berry cake from the freezer the other night, plus the remainder of the container of the creme fraiche. That went into boiled cauliflower along with some of the reserved boiling water, a couple tablespoons of butter and 1/4 cup of so of fresh herbs I had on hand (dill, parsley, thyme, and rosemary). It was a big hit with my husband.

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15 minutes ago, saf said:

I want to eat this pasta.

It's pretty quick to make. It would have been faster but I had to make more bread crumbs. The total time on the site says 45 minutes and that's probably fairly close to accurate.

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Tonight we had the remaining slices of savory ham and cheese bread with butter; turkey picadillo; white rice; and, spinach au gratin.

The picadillo came out great. I've never made it with turkey before.

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Charcoal-grilled burgers last tonight, on brioche buns from WF. I was going to make a small salad with grape tomatoes but when I opened the box of arugula I'd just purchased Thursday I found quit a bit of it going badūüėí, so¬†green beans again. The burgers were a rare treat because we don't eat much red meat.

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7 hours ago, dwt said:

when I opened the box of arugula I'd just purchased Thursday I found quit a bit of it going badūüėí

I hate that, not just the going bad but happening so soon after purchase.

Tonight was -- I don't know what to call it -- bar food night. I'm really running out of ideas and energy. Potato skins with colby jack cheese and scallions plus sour cream/horseradish for adorning; soy-glazed turkey wings; and, mini-pita pizzas with mashed creme fraiche cauliflower as the base, some topped with roasted beet slices and feta and others with turkey picadillo. There was also some chopped heirloom tomato to go on the potato skins and/or pizzas.

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