All posts filed under: Simple Dinner Sunday

Curb Market Crawl – Meatier, Meat Sauce

Fennel Dee, Dee… ” I adore thinly shaved fennel tossed with a light olive oil vinaigrette, scattered on a fresh  roasted garlic and white truffle pizza.” … said by – absolutely no one at the Dahlonega Walmart… ever… And I know that because I found  Six – marked down, re-labeled, name changed and marked down again, and a Manager’s Special sticker attached – fennel bulbs at  my local meg-lo-maniacal mart for a whopping 2 bucks… total! Call me crazy – but that’s like finding out your cat makes diamond encrusted, solid gold um.. surprises in the litter box. During my last foray down towards points more cosmopolitan, in places with produce enhancing lighting and pressed green aprons, they were well over $3.00 per bulb! So.. yeah… I was stoked! and I bought 12. Granted – Wally’s isn’t exactly what you’d call a curb market, not by a long shot. But it was just off the main road…. and I did have to drive there…. … and did I mention it was 12? Needless to say – there’s going to be some “fenneling” to …

99 cans of chickpeas on the wall…

For the most part – they’ve been there a year. Back last October when I was preparing for the “Party with a Pretty Dress”, in the middle of packing the truck for the 5 hour drive, I rationally  ran to the market and picked up 15 cans of discount chickpeas. Thinking, that on top of all the other things I was making for the wedding, I’d whip up a gallon of fresh hummus as well… since I obviously didn’t have enough to do. I tend to over-plan. I tend to bite off more than I can chew. I tend to take the short bus to Crazytown at times. When I get like that people really ought to handcuff me to a steam table and spoon feed me ritalin until I succumb into a coma. Somewhere in the wee hours the day before the event, I came to my senses and bought readi-made hummus. But that left me with a boatload of chickpeas, and since it’s almost their birthday…. Chickpea Stew –  Riding the trolley several years ago …

Copper River Salmon – Salmon Pot Pie

Granted, it’s probably not the first thing that comes to mind when you say Pot Pie…. maybe not even the second… yet. First things first – A huge thank you to Copper River Wild Salmon and the Folks of Cordova, Alaska for all the hard work in managing the season, responsibly sustaining and catching all the beautiful salmon, and allowing me to represent your hard work in my posts this year. It’s been a hoot and a half –  and a blast. It’s been an honor, and I hope I have done you justice. This marks the end of the Copper River Salmon posts. The season, for intents and purposes, is over. And the salmon are making their way deep into the freshwater rivers and streams to get busy and do the nasty. I really should have done more before now with the shipment of Coho* they sent me, but I just couldn’t think of anything new.. and different.. and that you hadn’t seen 100 other times in 1,000 different incarnations. So I vacuum packed …

Simple Dinner Sunday – Pork Cutlets with Mushroom Sauce

I’ve never been one of those shoppers with a rigid grocery list. Sticking to a list, ticking off every little thing so you stay within $.50 of your budgeted grocery allowance just doesn’t work for me. I like the thrill of the economical buy. And, I do like a bargain. Reference the… 6 packs of ox tail for $1.95 a pack 1/2 bushel of okra for eight bucks family pack of 1.5 pound fryers (really, really tiny chickens) for 89 cents each industrial-sized bag of frozen chopped spinach… So, just imagine the joy of unearthing a 1 lb pack of “Cubed Pork Cutlets” for $1.35. I was over the moon happy. Really… Until, I got them home… Here’s the thing with cubed meat. Cubing is a process intended to break up the relatively tough muscle in bad cuts of meat. The protein feeds into the whacka-chopper, and it smashes 1/4″ divots into the slab of toughness. Top Round, Eye of Round, Brisket, Vein Strips – all good candidates for the cubing mawl… Pork? not so much. Pork, …

Simple Dinner Sunday – Mushroom & Eggplant Lasagna

I’ll readily admit it – I’m a carnivore. Meat, meat, meat makes my world go round. And, if this were only all about me, I’d probably only write about meaty food. But it’s not. I’ve got friends that are vegetarian, some that are vegan. There are the lactose, tree nut, gluten, casein, fungi, dairy, GMO, HFCS intolerant… so it takes more than a pile of hamburger meat to make a banquet. And, since the garden is kicking out the goods in high output these days – I’ve got a lot of produce to find ways to use. My thinking was – to finely chop eggplant and porcini mushrooms together, season them with fennel and seasonings (like Italian sausage and add it to a pasta sauce…. Taste-wise, it works. But, eh – textural wise, not the greatest mouth feel. So the next option was use it as the “meat” filling in a lasagna. Dinq! This recipe is Lactose Free, but not Dairy Free – I still haven’t been able to find a suitable substitution for Parmesan or sharper cheeses….yet. The Gluten Free …

Peach Butter Bingo 4 – Peach Butter Pot Roast

Granted, I probably could have come up with a better… more creative… less vision-o-breakfast conjuring name for the pot roast… but it is what it is. This is the last of the Peach Butter Bingo recipes you..you in the back… stop rolling your eyes…. This pot roast is deceptively simple, with a huge bang for your flavor buck. The thing is – pot roast is pot roast, and unless you do something exceptionally bizarre with your preparation, they pretty much all taste the same…. meat…potatoes…veg. I had a little of the Peach Butter BBQ sauce left over in the fridge, and things being what they are, it wasn’t going to hang around in there forever and wait for me to grill up something else. So I looked at the sauce… a 1/2 cup of peppers, garlic, sweet, tang, hot and wondered what it would be like to use it as the only seasoning in the pot roast. This one is a winner. The peach butter isn’t overpowering, but adds just enough sweet balance to the …

Simple Dinner Sunday – Sock(eye) It To Me!

Let’s talk about salmon.  Wild Salmon vs Farmed Salmon to be exact. Normally I wouldn’t call people out  – well, I do… in a veiled tongue-in-cheek kind of way – but this is something I really cannot let ride, and it’s been nagging me the past couple of weeks since the program aired. And before you get all “You’re just saying this because you’re doing the wild salmon thing”… it’s not. A couple of weeks ago America’s Test Kitchen showed their viewers how to cook a perfect piece of salmon. As a segment of that program, they had a fishmonger on that bad-mouthed wild caught. He flatly stated that he would never eat wild caught salmon, using statements like: ” I want to know what my salmon has been eating…” ” Wild salmon forage unchecked, mercury and other toxic chemical contamination is a very big possibility…”  ” Wild salmon is less fatty and fewer Omega 3 fats…” ” Farmed salmon are a sustainable product…” “Farmed salmon is more readily available and less expensive…” All very valid concerns …

Simple Dinner Sunday – All up in your grill…

It’s the Memorial Weekend and I’d be remiss if I didn’t have a grillin’ thang or two to add to the backyard hoo haa. And since I’m not going to be doing the cooking tomorrow.. you get it today. And, since I kinda lean that way anyway, it’s a couple of stupid simple dishes from the Asian inspired side of the road: Sweet Chili Pork Blades and a Quick Griddle Kale Stir Fry Okay, I say simple – and I mean it. So that means I’m pulling together a couple of bottled and canned things to speed up the process. 1st, you’re going to need a bottle of this: Thai Sweet Chili Sauce Yes, I can make it myself.. and you probably can too – but why bother. You aren’t going to make it as good as what comes bottled up for your enjoyment, and remember.. we’re doing things quick today. Do make sure you find the sauce with the shredded carrots and turnip in it… if you can. (Hint… this one has it.) Right then, …

Demons

Click! Whirrrr…. rr   rr r Bing!         We’re writing tonight? yes        Cool, are we finally talking about FTLB? no.. Why not? It’s.. complicated. It’s a heavily polarized subject at this point in time.. and nothing I say will do anything but inflame the issue…. and I don’t like doing conflict –  that’s why. Oh, then are we talking about our 2-year anniversary? Two years doing THIS! 2 WHOLE        YEARS  at the reins of Plate Fodder!, man.. aren’t you stoked? Eh, I don’t wanna… Why not? I don’t know… everyone does. I mean,  It’s a deal to me – but It just isn’t that big of a milestone and I doubt anyone else would be interested. You know, I get the excitement and I get the joy, but that isn’t predicated on anyone else following along. This is what I do… I cook.. I write…        You’re in a foul mood tonight… No, just pensive        about? No idea… just hit me earlier in …

Rolled Pork Roast with Coriander Chutney

I prowl the international markets in the Atlanta area, a stalker – if you will. I rummage through the oddities of greenery in the fresh market – I poke at the slabs of petrified fish stacked like cords of funky hardwood – I jiggle the vats of condiments and kimchi trying to digest the ingredients – I’m entranced at the sparkling rows of  sauces, ointments, seasoning powders and poultices… my fingers tracing along the minuscule and confusing ingredient listings for that one component that one day will make that one stellar dish. On a recent foraging outing I came away with a bottle of very green Coriander Chutney. I had absolutely no idea what I’d use it for… but I didn’t already have one… and the pantry shelves still had a couple of inches that weren’t occupied. So, home it came – and on the shelf it went… next to the disturbing jar of MudFish (bought during a particularly vulnerable moment) and the plastic bottle of dried baby shrimp that sound like a maracas if you shake them while singing …