This past week I had the closing shift three times, and for the second time in two weeks, back to back nights. It may not be that awful if our dog, Daisy, slept past 4 a.m. My husband takes the 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. wake ups and I get up with her after 4 a.m. She's usually settles down after a trip outside, some water and her breakfast. Afterwards she proceeds to spend rest of the day napping.
On Thursday, I dragged myself to the gym to get the body and mind going. Then the nagging question, what's for supper? Back in March 2007, Wegmans published a recipe for Gingered Beef with Broccoli and Stir-Fry sauce. The active time is 20 minutes, so you gotta love that!
My daughter has friend from high school whose family owns Alexian Pate and Specialty Meats, in Neptune, NJ. A while ago, she gave me several pates. I love pate, perhaps it's because my mother use to eat Mother Goose liverwurst and I too acquired a taste for it. Pate's texture is reminiscent of those days, but now is in a whole other world texture and flavor.
I'm the only one in the family that would eat meat pates. Alexian also makes vegetable terrines that my family will eat. However, what do with delicious duck liver mousse with cognac? I offered to bring it a party at my brother's house this weekend, but he said they're more the "PB&J" crowd. Instead, I purchased some won-ton wrappers and made a quick ravioli out of the pate. Not knowing what would happen to the filling when boiled, I used about a teaspoon. In hindsight, I could have filled them more or used my ravioli cutter to have less dough surrounding the filled.
I have to work three nights this week, so again it becomes a cooking challenge. Once again, I sifted through my recipes and I came across yet another one from the old Cooking Live show, one of the original Food Network shows hosted by Sara Moulton.
Coq au vin ("rooster in wine") with shiitake mushrooms is chicken cooked in wine. While some recipes may call for the dish to be cooked on the stove top or oven, this recipe was done in a slower cooker. Instead of fresh pearl onions, I went the frozen route, which worked just as well. In lieu of fresh shiitakes, I used my dried Williams-Sonoma dried wild mushrooms (blend of shiitake, portobello, oyster and chanterelle mushrooms), that I resuscitated in some hot water for approximately 5 minutes, drained and added water to the slower cooker. In checking some other recipes on line, I noticed the use of burgundy wine. This recipe called for white wine
I was off today and was able to make a great supper for my husband and I. I stopped off at Whole Foods on my way home from the gym. I found on sale Bell and Evans whole chicken for $1.99/lb., what a deal! I've had in my possession a recipe from the TV show Cook's Country for Skillet-Roasted Chicken and Stuffing (February/March 2013) that I was dying to make.
Despite what the calendar says, it doesn't quite feel like spring just yet. Just prior to the snow last week crocuses were coming up in my garden and my husband clipped a lone daffodil. However, yesterday it was still cool enough to enjoy a meatloaf for supper.
Last evening I was working the closing shift. It's always a challenge to plan a meal that can be done ahead, but yet reheated for my husband. So I rummaged through my file and came up with barbecue turkey burgers. It is yet another item from my Gourmet Magazine collection (recipe by Lauren Holden Mead), vintage September 1996.
As it is the Lenten season, I am abstaining from eating meat on Fridays. I found in my files a recipe for Hawaiian Tuna Burgers with Maui Wowee Salsa. I believe my husband found this recipe somewhere years ago and I finally decided to make it.
I grill year round whether there's rain, snow, heat or cold weather, I'm out there. Last week Whole Foods had Bell and Evans bone in chicken breast on sale for $2.49 lb. It was a great price for chicken that consistently cooks up moist and tender. In my files I had a recipe for grilled chicken with lemon, garlic and oregano from the July 2002 issue of Gourmet Magazine.
I have to admit, I didn't pick up fresh oregano at the food store, so I used dried. Instead of the 1/4 cup the recipe called for, I used approximately 1/8 cup or slightly less. The only other non-pantry item that is required is fresh lemons, I don't use or recommend reconstituted lemon juice. As I only prepared three bone in chicken breasts, it took about 45 minutes to make the sauce and cook the chicken. I rounded out the meal with a starch and veggie. My husband really enjoyed the chicken prepared this way.
In my blog I have already spoken of Fontanarosa Gourmet Specialty Foods in Totowa, NJ. During my last visit there, I purchased a package of grilled pears and Gruyere cheese ravioli. Well, I finally made them last night. Oh my gosh, they were delicious! When I purchased the ravioli I asked what type of sauce I should make. The salesperson suggested a butter sauce with pears.
A former teacher, shop-a-holic, empty-nester redefining quick, family approved dinners.