Tag Archives: dinner

Chicken Matzo Ball Soup – PROPA!!

2 May

Actually, I lied.  This is the version of the soup I make when I’m a self-piteous ball of frowns.  It’s a low-labor-intensity meal.  Just throw a buncha stuff in a pot, cover with stock, and boil until it’s soup.

A pile of Delicious.  In Broth.

A pile of Delicious. In Broth.

I started with my trusty Boston Organics veggies: carrots, a yellow onion, and some potatoes.

Why is this picture so dark?  Oh yes, it was because of my personal storm cloud.

Why is this picture so dark? Oh yes, it was because of my personal storm cloud.

Regular soup base: carrots, an onion, celery, herbes de Provence, salt&pepper.

Wooden spoon not added for flavor.

Wooden spoon not added for flavor.

My mama always adds a LOT of dill.

What's the dill-io.

What's the dill-io.

Then I just threw the rest of the ingredients into the pot, covered with stock, and simmered for 1.5 hours.  You don’t have to cook it that long.  It’s pretty much done after about 30 min.  But I like for the meat to fall apart and for the potatoes to make it nice and starchy.

A soup is born.

A soup is born.

Aaaaand meanwhile, in the other pot, I just made some matzo balls according to the recipe on the box.  Nothing spesh.

Did y'all notice I only own three pots? Bet you didn't know you can make matzo balls in a sautee pan!  Thanks, Necessity!

Did y'all notice I only own three pots? Bet you didn't know you can make matzo balls in a sautee pan! Thanks, Necessity!

Soooo that’s it.  Recipe:

Chicken Soup

3 big carrots

3 big celery stalks

1 yellow onion

3 bay leaves

1/2 tsp herbes de provence

2 tbsp olive oil

big handful of dill

1/2 lb of potatoes, peeled, chopped

1 lb chicken breast (that’s about 3 chicken breast halves)

3 cups of stock, chicken or veg
Chop all the veggies into bite-size chunks.  Cook them down a bit in some olive oil with the herbs.  Add potatoes and chicken and dill.  Cover with stock.  Put the lid on and come back when it’s soup.

For matzo balls, I forget the proportions.  But what you need to have on hand is:

Matzo meal

vegetable oil

two eggs

water

seasoning if your mazto ball mix doesn’t have it already. All I added was salt and pepper. My mama also adds chopped dill.  It turns the matzo balls green.  Tee-hee!

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Okonomiyaki – A Symphony in the key of “Cabbage”

13 Apr

Yaaaaay Okonomiyaki!!! Remember that friend who gave me that awesome Kyocera ceramic santoku knife? He also introduced me to Okonomiyaki.  Then I became obsessed with it on a subsequent trip to Japan, but I never thought to make it at home.  I don’t even know how I made the leap between Okonomiyaki and an over-supply of cabbage.

btdubs, I can't find my camera, so forgive the impersonal photos.  I'll fix this post when my camera comes out of hiding.

btdubs, I can't find my camera, so forgive the impersonal photos. I'll fix this post when my camera comes out of hiding.

Ok, the basics.  Okonomiyaki is like a big, savory Japanese pancake with lots of fun toppings like katsu sauce and dried bonito flakes.  The batter is just flour, baking powder, a little dashi or veg broth.  The bulk of the pancake is shredded cabbage and two eggs.  The remaining contents of the pancake are totally flexible – you can add any meat, bacon, shrimp, squid, fish, veggies, whatevs.  I added diced shrimp, bean sprouts, and enoki mushrooms.

Another option is to buy a kit like this:

Okonomiyaki kit...complete with hilarious translated instructions and adorable Japanese cartoons.

Okonomiyaki kit...complete with hilarious translated instructions and adorable Japanese cartoons.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The perk of the kit is that it contains the special yam powder.  That yam is hard to find.  It’s also kinda gross and viscous.  Sooooo let’s go with the powder.

So you make the batter and throw the rest of the ingredients into a big bowl.  Give it a few good turns but don’t mix too hard.  Then take a scoop, put it on a griddle or frying pan, and smack it down into pancake-shape using a spatula.  When it’s done, eat it with BEER!!!

For the toppings, I put furikake seasoning, which is pretty easy to find.  Sadly I had no bonito flakes.  But I did find this awesome katsu sauce and I highly recommend it:

Katsu makes everything better.  Or maybe just fried things.  I wouldn't like put it on ice cream.

Katsu makes everything better. Or maybe just fried things. I wouldn't like put it on ice cream.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Purple Sun Potato and Gold Turnip Gratin

8 Apr

Purple and gold!  An involuntary homage to the Lakers, I suppose.

Gratuitous gratinery.

Gratuitous gratinery.

So I made this gratin.  It has paper-thin slices of purple sun potatoes and gold turnips, some milk, some parmesan cheese, and loads of herbs de Provence.

The potatoes are super-pretty.

Purple Sun Potatoes, favorites of Louis XIV.  Not really.

Purple Sun Potatoes, favorites of Louis XIV. Not really.

So, I was gonna just do a potato gratin, but I thought it sounded kinda lonely.  So I searched my fridge  and…

Behold!!  The sacred turnip!!

Behold!! The sacred turnip!!

I got to slicing on my mandoline, which provided transparent slices of these burly roots.

OXO mandoline in action.

OXO mandoline in action.

So thin you could use them on a slide projector. Not really.

So thin you could use them on a slide projector. Not really.

Next I buttered my Le Creuset baking dish and layered it with a maze of potato and trnip slices.  In between each layer, I put salt & pepper, herbs de Provence, and parmesan.  Extra cheese on the top, and then added enough milk to just reach the top layer.

Gratin me up, Scotty

Gratin me up, Scotty

And then baked it for about 50 minutes at 400 degrees F.  And then it was dinner!

Gratin, chicken sausage sauteed with onions, and a salad. In my country, we call this "dinner".

Gratin, chicken sausage sauteed with onions, and a salad. In my country, we call this "dinner".

Shepherd’s Pie with Every Great Vegetable Ever

7 Mar

What to do with half of a leftover butternut squash and a surplus of sweet potatoes from last week’s produce box?  Definitely Sausage Shepherd’s Pie with Sweet Potatoes and Squash from Epicurious.  The most delicious thing about this particular shepherd’s pie is that I discovered that maple syrup and curry were meant to be together.

 

Makes me wanna herd some sheep!...but then again...lots of things make me want to herd sheep.  Sheep are hilarious.

Makes me wanna herd some sheep!...but then again...lots of things make me want to herd sheep. Sheep are hilarious.

I did, however, make a few amendments:

-Added Swiss chard.  No peas, no corn.

-swapped cream for half and half

-Swapped coriander for cumin.

Here’s the basic concept: Boil sweet potatoes, butternut squash, and regular potato all together.  Drain.  Add back to pot, add butter and maple syrup, commence Pagan Squash-mashing ritual.  Meanwhile, saute the filling: sausage, onions, garlick, Swiss chard and curry + cumin. Throw the filling in a delightful cobalt blue Le Creuset baking dish, add a beaten egg plus half and half, and top it off with a colorful hat of squash.

Here’s my trio of delightful winter starches, post boil.

Steamy

Steamy

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pagan Squash-Mashing, with maple syrup and butter.  Def wanna stick my face in that.  Like, when it’s cooled a bit.

Moments later...

Moments later...

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The filling is underway in the pan.  This is the part that makes the house smell amazing.  Especially the curry.  In our last apartment, Man-friend and I lived on a block with a very delicious Indian restaurant, and lots of Indian neighbors who apparently spent their days cooking torturously delicious things.  The block perpetually smelled like curry, and every time Man-friend and I passed someone’s kitchen window, we made a note to that we needed more Indian friends.  Which is obviously the main driver behind both of us going to business school.
But I digress!

Meanwhile, back in the pan....

Meanwhile, back in the pan....

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s the shepherd’s pie before going on the oven.

Shepher's Pie Tetris

Shepher's Pie Tetris

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

It’s pretty easy, and SUCH a great meal.