Archive | September, 2011

It’s the Sunday Roast

25 Sep

Well, yes. The Husband is required for carving. Haven't watched that video yet.

We’re very lucky to have, at our farmer’s market, a lovely lady who sells organic, free-range chickens and their eggs. She actually has photos of her daughter chasing them around the farm, so you know that they truly get outside, rather than just having access to the outside. Chickens, apparently, are not the smartest creatures and if they don’t know there’s an “outside” it’s rare that they will use a door to get to it. So it’s nice to see that “free range” lives up to its meaning for once!

I’m a big fan of anything that’s not mass produced or factory “farmed”, so it’s a real treat to have her there. Seeing as how her eggs are 50¢ more expensive than Whole Foods, and a whole chicken is just $14, and two chicken breasts at Whole Foods cost $10, buying her product is a no-brainer. (And, thanks to this very instructive video, I’ve learned how easy it is to cut up a chicken into pieces!) Plus, you can make your own chicken stock out of the bones—especially after you’ve roasted a chicken. Continue reading

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The Grill’s Out of Gas, So It’s Pasta Night

18 Sep

This dish goes nicely with a glass of red wine, natch!

After we’d been grilling all summer, and even had a tank in backup, we ran out of propane for the grill. I was in a panic—what the heck was I going to cook for dinner?? For crying out loud, I’d even been putting pizza on the grill!

I finally pulled myself together. I mean, it’s like I’d never used the oven or stovetop before. Geez. The Husband can’t eat fish at the moment (not allowed by the acupuncturist for some reason) and we’d had chicken the night before, so I decided on some pappardelle that I knew we had in the cupboard. I wandered around the Gelson’s produce department, thinking about what would go with the Italian sausage or prosciutto that we had in the fridge. I settled on some beautiful, organic Swiss chard and a lovely red jalapeño, plus some nice pecorino Romano cheese from the deli. Continue reading

Barbecue as Pizza Oven

17 Sep

Now that's what I call a pizza, not those things that come in a box!

That’s right, you read it correctly. We got sick and tired of crappy pizza in our neighborhood (thanks, Gina’s, for changing your menu for the worse), and kept seeing some great grilled pizzas in my food magazines. I figured we’d give it a go—what could go wrong?

Exactly, said The Husband, and refused to try it when friends were over and wanted to do a test run. No problem! Strangely enough, the perfect opportunity came on a Saturday when we thought we had nothing in the fridge to rustle up. The Husband lamented that we had just been near Trader Joe’s and could have picked up some pre-made dough, but I scoffed. I’ve got yeast and flour and I’ll make fresh dough myself, no problems. Even though I always freak out that my dough won’t rise and everything will be ruined, it rarely happens. Continue reading

Burger Queen

3 Sep

This is a special occasion for me, as it turns out that the cow and I don’t get along. I haven’t been able to eat beef since I moved back from London. Dairy either. And now I think I know what’s at the root of the problem: the beef in this country is fed some weird hormones that really twist my stomach into knots.

Now that's what I call a proper burger.

Not that I need to eat beef often, for sure, but cheese? Are you kidding me? That’s just cruel. I love cheese, and sorry–none of the vegan stuff comes close. Except the stuff with casein in it, which is a) technically not vegan and b) milk protein, so it still does my stomach in.

But I made a discovery, finally. Cheese made with goat or sheep’s milk does not hurt my stomach! And neither does bison! Oh, happy days! Here’s the super delicious burger I made to test this theory out, and I’m happy to report that it was not just tasty, it was also painless.

There’s quite a bit going on in this recipe, and we used the same fries as before. This time I finally shallow-fried them in a little coconut and grapeseed oil mix, because last time I had to actually stick them under the broiler to get them to brown, and even after that, they still weren’t very crispy. And we’re still loving those Japanese yams for fries. Continue reading