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Dinner - The Polyphonic Food Blog

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A slightly strange chili recipe (I guess it isn't that strange)- pretty much empty the fridge chili- onion and garlic, ground beef, kidney beans, celery, green pepper, serrano pepper, ground chili powder, garlic salt, pepper, cumin a little cinnamon, crushed and diced tomatoes, a little tomato paste and a little beef stock.

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Pot roast with potatoes, carrot, onions, and garlic
Trader Joe's Italian style rosemary crackers

I started the pot roast on top of the stove in a dutch oven and then put it in the oven at 300-325 for several hours before turning the oven off while I went out for a couple hours. It stayed warm in the Le Creuset in the oven until dinner time. The braising liquid was red wine and beef stock and the flavors built up really nicely over all that time. The meat was delicious. Bread to sop up the gravy instead of crackers would have been better, but oh well.

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Teriyaki beef tacos with spinach, pickled onion, lettuce, yakisoba sauce.  

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Leftover lamb meatballs and potatoes with tahini sauce and pine nuts
Roasted chicken legs and wings*

Yesterday was just a weird day...

 

*We also had an impromptu stuffing with this. I had roasted the whole chicken over a sliced onion and scattered the last of some homemade croutons I had made under and around the bird. The long-cooked onions and bread broke down nicely (I basted a little during cooking) and made "stuffing."

 

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Green leaf lettuce, Campari tomatoes, toasted pine nuts, and champagne vinaigrette
Baguette slices and butter
Lasagna roll-ups

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Veggie Rigatoni (I don't really know how much veggie is actually in veggie pasta, I am sure it's just a marketing ploy), italian sausage, shallot and butternut squash with olive oil, parsley and parm.

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Black bean soup  with sour cream and cilantro
House of Blues spinach - artichoke dip
Rosemary focaccia with Maldon sea salt flakes
Filet Mignon topped with baby arugula and Easter radish salad
Chocolate shortbread hearts

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Salad of napa cabbage, baby arugula, baby romaine, and radishes; ranch
Leftover black bean soup
Chicken sandwiches (avocado, tomato) on focaccia

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Chicken noodle soup
Toasted baguette slices
Leftover spinach-artichoke dip
Seared leftover filet mignon
Baked potatoes; sour cream; bacon; jarlsberg

I managed to reheat the steak without overcooking it, which was a win. It was rare enough that a really quick sear in a scorching hot cast iron grill pan got it heated without cooking it a whole lot more -- to medium-rare. We each left about half of our filet the first go-round, so I guess we could have just shared one.

The soup was the last of the chicken meat from a previously roasted chicken; broth from the carcass + a little left from a box of broth used for black bean soup; chopped carrot; onion and garlic powders; salt and pepper; and, broken vermicelli.

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Manhattan clam chowder:  I made lobster stock from spiny lobster is that my neighbor caught.  It’s been in my freezer forever and I decided it was time to use it.  I had to reheat it, and strain it, as there was quite a bit of icky stuff at the bottom.  

The base of the soup was spicy turkey Italian sausage, onions, carrots, celery, and garlic.  After cooking this for a while to brown the sausage, I added the lobster stock, canned diced tomatoes, saffron bloomed in hot water, chopped potatoes,  coriander and lemon juice.  After it cooked for a while, I decided it needed more punch, and added some tomato paste and dry vermouth.  

When the potatoes were almost cooked, I added a 10 ounce package of lovely frozen clam meat that I bought at Wild Fork Foods (A chain that specializes in all manner of frozen proteins, from exotic game to ground beef. Their stuff is great)  and more lemon juice.  Finished it with parsley and some Tabasco. Enjoyed with a ficelle from a local bakery. 

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Salad (baby spring mix and tomatoes)
Leftover lasagna roll-ups (filled with cheese and baked with marinara) plus new lasagna roll-ups, stuffed with spinach artichoke dip and baked with heavy cream and bread crumbs
Garlic bread

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I made a one-pan chicken and lentils recipe from the Post last night, but I didn't have the right size pan. It called for a 9"x 13" metal roasting pan and my only metal roaster is bigger than that and deep. I had to decide between using metal in the wrong size or something else in the right size. I think using the bigger pan was a poor decision. I added chickpeas and spinach to the pan too to try to fill it up more. In the end, I don't think I really liked the recipe that much, though, so there's not much point in trying again with the correct size pan. I think it was the lentils I just didn't care for with this. Something similar using all chickpeas might be good, but I'm just not a fan of these one pan recipes that have you opening and closing the oven a bunch of times to add certain ingredients every X minutes.

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Pizza!

We bought fresh dough and mozzarella from Vace, I had some leftover pasta sauce in the freezer, and I slow cooked some onion until they started to get a bit caramelized.  I'll have to say, we were pretty impressed with the Vace dough.  I left it on the kitchen counter for a couple of hours and it continued to ferment and expand.  We were able to make two medium sized pizzas.  I cranked the gas oven to 550 degrees, cooked them on heavy weight 1/4 sheet hotel pans for 10 minutes.  I probably could have pushed them to 12 minutes to toast the crust and mozz a little more.  Expect the pizza crust to come out a little more bread-y and soft rather than chewy and crisp.   But overall, great success.

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I made peas and potatoes with curry last night to go with leftover Indian food that we had- rice, chicken korma, eggplant.  

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Beef vegetable soup made from the last of the leftover pot roast
Grilled cheese on rye (jarlsberg, mozzarella)

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Mushroom soup, eggplant with black bean sauce and basil (I CANNOT get this dish to turn out like I imagine it, no matter what recipe I try. I'm about to give up and just eat it at restaurants. Anyone have tips? I don't expect the eggplant to turn out exactly right since I'm not deep-frying it, but the sauce is always so bland at home and so zippy yet comforting at Thai restaurants), stove-top mac-n-cheese, and banana bread. Tuesday is my home day and I always end up cooking whatever is hanging out in the fridge so they won't go bad.  Earlier this week the batch cooking included red beans and rice, orange-cranberry scones, and bourbon chicken.

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21 hours ago, Sundae in the Park said:

eggplant with black bean sauce and basil (I CANNOT get this dish to turn out like I imagine it, no matter what recipe I try. I'm about to give up and just eat it at restaurants. Anyone have tips? I don't expect the eggplant to turn out exactly right since I'm not deep-frying it, but the sauce is always so bland at home and so zippy yet comforting at Thai restaurants),

Are you using Thai basil? If so, maybe add more. That does lend a much zestier flavor than the sweeter basil.

Last night was a baby spring mix salad with bacon, tomatoes, cucumber, and ranch; a half batch of Ina Garten's French lentil soup with sausage; and a second batch of rosemary focaccia from the remaining dough. I've tried two different pans for the bread and ample olive oil, and it has stuck both times. The focaccia is good but the sticking is frustrating.

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Shrimp tacos with chipotle crema, salsa, cilantro lime slaw and guac along with roasted kalettes from Twin Springs Farm.

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Last night was turkey tamales with tomatillo salsa and avocado.  The previous night was roast pork with baby zucchinis in butter.

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Tonight I made ricotta blintzes from Smitten Kitchen Everyday. The flavor of the batter (which included orange zest and currants) was great, but I had trouble with the directions for forming them by hand-tossing in flour. I lost a lot of batter that got stuck to my hands. (The recipe yielded 16; I got 10.) The temperature given for frying was too high and they over browned and dried out some. I wish they'd worked better because the batter was nice.

They were supposed to be served with honey but I used maple syrup. I also put out some smoked salmon, dill, and sour cream for the blintzes.

I cooked up a bunch of pork sage breakfast sausages as well. (That's one reason I went with maple syrup instead of the honey that would have had to be heated. I love maple syrup with breakfast sausages.)

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Last night was roasted broccolini and cherry tomatoes, with tahini-yogurt sauce and basil; curry-roasted chickpeas and cauliflower; farro, toasted pine nuts and halved raw cherry tomatoes. I put out extra sauce for serving. It was inspired by a description I saw of a dish Jose Andres' operation had been serving out of the TFG kitchen for government employees during the shutdown. (Description of the original: "roasted broccoli and basil tahini bowl with tzatziki, curry roasted garbanzos, farro, and cherry tomatoes.")

I seasoned the broccolini with evoo, salt, pepper, and ancho chili powder. The ancho added a little fruitiness. This was a solid meatless meal. Without the yogurt it would have been vegan.

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Leftover lentil and sausage soup
Pan-grilled baby back ribs
German potato salad

I'd noted the rib recipe a while ago, after I saw it on David Lebovitz's blog, and only finally got around to making it last night. I had vacuum-sealed extra ribs I had after making a different recipe and defrosted them for this. I didn't note how much that was but probably 3/4- 1 lb. This employs a grilling technique used in France that can be done stovetop with a grill pan. The ribs sit for a while after being coated with a spice rub and are then are grilled about 7 minutes on the fattier side, turned over and done 20 more minutes with the pan covered. They came out really well, nice and tender. It didn't take much more than 1 1/2 hours start to finish (though I used all pre- ground spices, approximating the amounts, since the recipe calls for 2 lbs. of ribs.)

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Leftover German potato salad
Pan-grilled NY strip steak
Roasted asparagus over cauliflower rice, topped with a fried egg

We split the steak and each had a veg portion topped with the egg. This was awesome.

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If you're a vegetarian, you're probably going to want to skip this post.

;) 

Every year, B and I invite our friends over for a dinner party the night the Oscars are held. This year, I decided to make pernil asado, inspired by a lunch I had at my firm's offices in Silicon Valley. That meal was so delicious that I *had* to learn how to replicate it at home.

Pernil asado con mojo
Arroz con gandules
Green salad, house vinaigrette
Sugar-free deep dark chocolate ice cream
Blackberry-lime pie, whipped cream

The ice cream was homemade and the pie from Whole Paycheck. (I decided to take a break from baking this weekend.)

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The sofrito for the arroz con gandules (for non-Spanish speakers, that's rice with pigeon peas) was decidedly non-traditional.

Clockwise from left: minced onion; minced onion and garlic; minced green pepper; minced cilantro; minced celery. Not shown is 1 tablespoon lard melting in a pan.

I ultimately decided to omit the cilantro in the sofrito. Essentially you're sweating the vegetables until they've softened, a process that will take about 20-25 minutes. Salt and pepper at the end.

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710 ml chicken stock
85 g minced cilantro
120 g sofrito
a pinch of saffron
14 g dried oregano
822 g canned pigeon peas
1 large onion, chopped
120 g pitted green and black olives
85 g bacon, diced
30 g tomato paste
350 g rice

You can view the recipe here, and the above ingredient list has changed a bit from the original but the process is the same: https://www.saveur.com/…/Arroz-con-Gandules-Rice-and-Pigeon…

Not shown is a Dutch oven with 1 tbsp. (12 g) lard which I substituted for the canola oil in the Saveur recipe.

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This is about 12 lbs. (a little over 5.5 kg) pork shoulder with skin and bone. We roasted it at 200 F(93 C) for 11 hours.

Recipe is here:  https://afoodobsessionblog.wordpress.com/2014/07/31/pernil-borinquen-a-slow-cooked-puerto-rican-pork-roast/?fbclid=IwAR1bRSsX3VyFd24q0sMdHWPsTRrAkYhCaYbuCn8Xyi5OjnvRFhaC2j_hcSM

To go along with this, we made some mojo:

28 g dried oregano
28 g ground cumin
60 garlic cloves, chopped
940 ml orange juice
940 ml lime juice
salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

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We're definitely making it again. For sure.

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