March 19, 2011
A gorgeous spring Saturday here in the Spa City; an afternoon at the races, a few winning tickets, and a good dinner and decent bottle of wine. Life gets a little better, but not a whole awful lot.
NS loves flank steak more than most anything in the world, except for maybe pizza and hamburgers. And he’s had a lot of pizza and burgers since he’s had a flank steak. I intended for this one to go on the grill, but the races ran long, and I seared it off on the stovetop, instead. I believe we’ll be grilling tomorrow, as it is supposed to be yet another beautiful day.
I put the steak in a marinade of balsamic vinegar and olive oil, with some meat tenderizer, before we left for the track, and stuck it in the fridge. Stopped by and picked up salad makings on the way home, and let the steak come up to room temp while I made the potato gratin.
This thing was astoundingly good. Foolishly good. So good I nearly swooned from the pleasure of it. I peeled about five medium sized russet potatos, sliced them thin, and par-boiled them. A bit too long, in fact, because some of them came apart. I layered them in a nine-inch, deep-dish pie plate with a healthy helping of cheese in between the layers — about three-quarters of a cup of a combo of cheddar, monterey jack and asiago — sprinkled with white pepper, then topped with another half-cup or better of cheese. Poured about 3/4 of a cup of heavy cream — I didn’t measure, it may have been less; just enough to come around the top layer of potatos — on top, and topped it off with panko. Baked it 45 minutes at 375, and it was absolutely marvelous. I may eat what’s left for breakfast.
October 3, 2009
This was not dinner:
It was, however, one good reason I had a good appetite for dinner, of which we have no photographs because, well, we just don’t. And it was nothing out of the ordinary, but it was good.
September 20, 2009
Well into a weekend visit here, I’ve had a couple of excellent meals and watched the Hogs lose, and am cooking for my hostess today.
Hit a couple of my favorites so far — Bhan Thai Friday night, Bluefin last night. Bhan Thai was, as usual, excellent; great tum kha, a little heavier on the lemongrass than many versions one sees, lots of silky cubes of tofu (I was having chicken in my main dish, so opted against chicken in the soup. I had the Lovely Ginger Chicken, a chicken, onion, bell pepper, carrot, mushroom stirfry in a really nice ginger sauce. It wasn’t a jump-out-at-you gingery, but a nice smooth broth with a rich taste that was standout when one soaked one’s jasmine rice in it. Not the best thing I’ve eaten off that menu, but I’d not turn it down.
Bluefin was, as usual, good sushi; had all my favorite rolls, plus edamame that were, disappointingly, overcooked. Some sake, half of which I brought home.
May 30, 2009
….because I have cooked a kick-ass dinnerand I have a queasy stomach and don’t want to eat. I’ve tasted. That’s enough.
We are having grilled tuna in plum-chipotle glaze; steamed and chilled sugar snap peas in a dressing of sesame oil, olive oil and rice vinegar, with a tad of minced ginger; caprese salad with farmer’s market tomatos; and zucchini fritters.
Damn, I wish I didn’t feel queasy. But not only am I too damn old to get pregnant, I haven’t been exposed recently, so I know on two counts that ain’t it.
The tuna is with the plum-chipotle glaze from the 1217 cookbook; maybe a half-cup of plum jam, a tablespoon of chopped chipotle in adobo. Stir it, nuke it, stir it again. Grill the tuna steaks (these were about an inch thick) on one side, maybe two-three minutes; flip it, glaze the cooked side with the glaze, give it a minute or two; glaze it again.
The peas — string the snow peas, steam them until crisp tender. Dump them in a bowl, sprinkle with sesame oil, olive oil and rice vinegar, and sprinkle with minced ginger. I would have sprinkled ‘em with sesame seeds for the looks, had I had any. Stir and chill.
The caprese salads — well, it’s a caprese salad, and pretty much self-explanatory.
The fritters — one of the kids’ favorites –
- 2 medium zucchini
- 2 eggs
- a shot of half-and-half
- 2 tbsp grated sweet onion
- 1/2 to 1 sleeve Ritz crackers
- Vegetable oil for frying
Grate zucchini; mix with eggs and half and half and let stand for 20 minutes on countertop. Add 1/2 sleeve crushed Ritz crackers. If needed, add more. Combine and dip out by spoonfulls into hot oil. Fry over medium high heat until golden brown.
Tasted good, anyway, if I didn’t manage anything but a sample of everything.