Starting out 2019

December 30, 2018

How do you cook your blackeyed peas? And what kind of greens do you have to fulfill your New Year’s Day luck requirements?

To take the second item first, I often make slaw, figuring that’s cabbage, and cabbage is a green. But last year, I actually cooked some mustard greens that were edible. Not good enough I wanted any more the rest of the year, but edible.

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Obligatory good-luck dinner for 2017 on Jan. 1.

Obligatory good-luck dinner for 2017 on Jan. 1.

Well, hey there, all y’all! Didja MISS me?

How it was, was, like this. There were enough leftovers I didn’t cook for three or four days after Christmas. Then I left for Nashvegas to babysit AGCs 1 and 3 while their parents, the bums, were off vacationing in Key West.  Now, tending to an energetic kindergartener and an energetic pre-schooler is NOT real conducive to cooking, though we did manage a couple of things.

Like the above obligatory black eyed peas and cabbage for New Year’s Day. The kids were suspicious about it, but finally agreed they liked fried potatoes. One of them liked the cabbage, the other the peas. I’ll call it a win.

I made the peas as if I were cooking red beans and rice, with turkey kielbasa and tomatoes and onions and spices. They were quite excellent. I used Rancho Gordo blackeyed peas, for good measure. My good luck for 2017 should be well assured.

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Similar to above illustration, which I stole off the web because I forgot to take one.

Similar to above illustration, which I stole off the web because I forgot to take one.

I have cooked my first turnip greens.

Yes, faithful readers (all 23 or so of you), it’s true. I am 60 years old and, until yesterday, had never cooked a turnip green. In related activity, I did not eat turnip greens, or kale, or collards, or poke sallet, or spinach, or any other kind of cooked green leafy thing.

Not certain how I managed to grow up poor, in the South, in the country, and intensely dislike turnip greens, but I did. When Mama would cook them, I’d find an excuse to be somewhere else. When I couldn’t be somewhere else and they were on the menu, I’d eat peanut butter and jelly.  Or something.

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Happy….well, you know

January 1, 2014

Bacon Jam. Perfect way to start out the year.

Bacon Jam. Perfect way to start out the year.

2014 is, in fact, proceeding apace here at Chez Brockwell. Amazing Grandchild 3 spent the night and he and I ushered in the New Year, both sound asleep (albeit I was racked out on the couch). I woke up at 12:30, toasted the event with the last of my mimosa, and went to bed.

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Sorry, kids. I just haven’t had the oomph to get the camera out and take pictures, though I’ve turned out some decent meals. And I’ve shopped, and gotten my hair cut, and my nails done, and had a couple of interviews, and generally enjoyed my week here.

Made a really, really good salad the other night, loosely patterning after one of the plethora of recipes folks have been posting on Facebook lately. This one I had to track via Pinterest to eventually get to, and I don’t remember whose blog it was, but I altered it enough I don’t guess I have to credit them, anyway. But whoever-mystery-blogger-you-were, thanks for the inspiration. Pinspiration. Whatever.

Edamame and Quinoa Salad with Sorta-Kinda Thai Dressing

  • 3 cups chopped red cabbage. I grated it, initially, decided that was going to be too fine, and chopped it.
  • 1 bag frozen shelled edamame, cooked according to package directions
  • 1 cup quinoa, cooked according to package directions
  • 1 1/2 cup roughly chopped raw snow peas
  • 1 1/2 cup diced carrots

Dressing

  • 1/2 cup creamy peanut butter
  • 3 tbsp rice vinegar
  • 2 tbsp sesame oil
  • 3 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp grated ginger
  • sriracha to taste (I used about 1/2 teaspoon, I’d guess)
  • dash of fish sauce
  • chopped cashew nuts

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Crappy cell phone pic, but it meets all the New Year's requirements. I am replete.

It is officially 2011. I gots my luck with the black eyed peas; I gots my money with the cabbage; I gots whatever you are supposed to get with the pork.

And I gots my mama’s cranberry salad, just Because I Can. My mama did not make this for 30-odd years, and I did not make it for another 20-0dd, for nothin’. This is good stuff.

This cabbage. You need to make this. This is officially Sweet Baby Jesus cabbage. It comes from Food52 participant Fiveandspice, who terms it “suspiciously delicious cabbage.” She does not lie.

You takes you an onion and two garlic cloves, and chops them fine. You commences to saute them in two tablespoons of butter (OK,so I used more than that. Sue me.) whilst you grates up a tablespoon of fresh ginger, which you adds to the skillet.

Then, while that gets all nice and soft and translucent and fragrant over medium heat, you takes you a medium head of cabbage, you cores it, and you commences to slice it thin, thusly:

Yet another crappy cell phone picture, but you get the idea.

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I am happy to report I have begun 2011 in the kitchen, which I believe is just a fine, fine place to spend some time early on the morning of the first day of the year.

The black eyed peas are soaking (I didn’t start them until this morning, as I’m not cooking them until dinnertime). The pork loin is rubbed down in one of my favorite spice rubs, wrapped in several layers of plastic wrap, and basking in the fridge. And because I didn’t want NS to go hungry between this morning’s pancakes and dinnertime, I used last weekend’s leftover beef roast, a couple cans of diced tomatos, and a bag of frozen mixed veggies and threw together a pot of vegetable beef soup.

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I hope everyone had as peaceful a New Year’s Eve as I did. Someone had to call me at midnight and wake me up; I’d gone to sleep on the couch, Kindle in hand, reading some thriller novel about folks trapped in a cavern with descendants of the Incas, beneath the Andes. Hey, it was free.

I was planning on going to a party last night. But it was way the hell and gone the other end of the lake, and it was going to be 28 degrees before morning, and I was dealing with the remains of the sinus crud, and there was football and basketball on TV and I’d been to the liquor store and grocery store. That, my friends, is a balance heavily tipped in favor of staying home. So I did. Child C, a partier much after her mama’s heart, stayed home as well. We ate potato-corn chowder, which was quite good.

Today I’ll cook black-eyed peas, and maybe some kraut and smoked sausage, just because one is supposed to have cabbage for NY day as well, and, well, kraut is cabbage, and besides, I’ve got some. And cornbread. May make some shrimp dip to go with chips and football. And think about New Year’s resolutions.

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