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Posts Tagged ‘Dinner’

From Dish Paige!:

Even though it snows in October now, it’s still most decidedly Fall (or Autumn if you’re fancy), which brings us ever closer to MY FAVORITE HOLIDAY OF ALL TIME, Thanksgiving. My reasons for loving this holiday are pretty simple: 1) I loooooooove stuffing, specifically my mom’s sausage stuffing and only varietals thereof and 2) as someone with drawing skills at the Elementary level, I really like making that “turkey by tracing your hand” picture. All of this brings me around to last night’s dinner, which I stumbled upon in what I would consider a moment of genius.

Ingredients:
1 acorn squash, cut in half and seeded
3-4 slices crusty bread (I used an amazing multi-grain rye, but go crazy), cubed
1 small onion, chopped
2 ribs celery, chopped
2 sausages (I used a combination of sweet and spicy Italian, but again, use what you like)
5 sprigs of thyme
2 leaves of sage
A handful of dried cranberries
A sprinkle of breadcrumbs

Directions:
Preheat the oven to 475.


Place the prepared acorn squash in a roasting dish, lightly drizzle with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the squash halves in the oven until they are fork tender, about 35 minutes. Remove the squash from the oven and carefully scoop out the pulp into a bowl, leaving about a 1/4 inch buffer around the shell. Save the shells for later.

While the squash is in the oven, lay out your bread cubes on a baking sheet and lightly toss with olive oil, put them in the oven and crisp up into crouton form. Don’t forget about them like I did, unless you like “slightly” burnt croutons.

In a pan, saute the onions and celery in olive oil until they begin to soften. Remove the sausage from the casing and add to the vegetables, making sure to break up the big pieces of sausage. Just before the sausage is done cooking, sprinkle in the thyme and the sage and mix well. Add this mixture, along with your NOT BURNT croutons to the reserved acorn squash pulp and stir to combine.

Lower the oven to 350.

Scoop the stuffing into the reserved acorn squash shells, sprinkle with the dried cranberries and breadcrumbs and pop back into the oven until the stuffing is heated through, about 25 minutes.

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From Dish Danielle:

So clearly, winter is taking it’s sweet time to get here, and you’ll certainly hear no complaints from this Dish. To celebrate this season’s longevity I chose to make something I’ve been cooking up every fall since Norah (the infamous founder of the Whisk & Ladle supperclub), and I created this autumnal recipe a few years back. Some friends that run The Noble Rot, (a rambling wine saloon) asked me to supply them with a nice cozy fall appetizer for a shop opening last month, and I instantly thought of this tried & true W&L fall staple.

Ingredients:
7-8 leeks, trimmed, rinsed and sliced thin
7-8 green apples, peeled and roughly chopped
a bunch of butter
mushroom hazelnut stock*
1 can evaporated milk
1 bunch thyme, picked

This is a very easy soup. It’s totally fine if you don’t have precise amounts above—it’s all about improvising! (Ahem. And tasting.) Start by placing a large pot over medium heat. Throw a few generous chunks of butter in to melt. Now toss in your leeks and allow them to sweat for a good while, stirring every so often as to cook evenly. You may want to add a few more chunks of butter—or, olive oil if you prefer. You want the leeks to look slightly wet. Once they’ve mushed up a bit, it’s time to add your apples.

Add a few liberal pinches of salt as well. I typically let the apples sweat for a bit, (5mins or so), before adding any stock—if the soup pot is a bit crowded there’s no harm in adding a dash of stock early to really get the apples cooking. Either way this soup will turn out tasting delicious. Now it’s time to add a decent amount of stock—Since we’re making a pretty hearty amount of soup (you’ve probably noticed I don’t typically cook in small quantities…) I’d start by adding an entire quart. Now you want to bring the soup to a nice simmer, and let it do its thing. Now it’s thyme time. (Toss it all in). Check on it and stir every so, and if it’s looking too thick add a bit more stock. I would say you’ll eventually add another entire quart to the pot, give or take a cup. It’s all up to you and how thick you’d like it to be.

Once the apples feel soft and mushy, add the half a can of the milk. If you have an immersion blender, here’s an opportunity to put it to use. I usually buzz this soup on the fastest setting to get it as silky as possible. If it’s still a bit too thick, now is when you’ll want to add some stock, (or the rest of the milk, your call). Definitely add S&P to taste.

When convinced, I’ve also been known to pass the soup through a chinoise, or fine strainer, for enhanced silkiness. This step isn’t totally necessary unless you’re trying to charm a room full of Michelin starred chefs.

*To make stock:

Fill your largest pot full of water to boil. Pell, rough chop, and toss in: 1 head celery, a bunch of carrots, 4 qts of mushrooms, a bunch of onions (6 or so?), leek tops (from the trimmings of leeks needed for soup!), the apple cores (from above ingredients as well), a bunch of thyme and a half lb of hazelnuts. Add a few large pinches of salt. Allow to simmer for a few hours, and taste to see how flavors are coming together. Salt again if needed, then strain out veggies. You now have a homemade stock. (sidenote: sometimes I reserve the hazelnuts from the broth that are now soft & tender to use as garnish on the soup…) Also, this recipe will likely yield you more stock than you need for the soup, so freeze for later use.

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From Dish Gwen:

Somehow over the last couple of weeks I accumulated three dozen eggs. Normally I go through a fair amount of eggs making cookies, pancakes, breakfast, etc, but three dozen was simply too much for my fridge to handle. Time to make a quiche or three.

Quiche is great because you can keep it in the fridge for several days and bring it out for breakfast, lunch and/or dinner until it’s all gone. I brought one to a potluck, another to work (to feed some hungry farmers), and kept the third to munch on at home. Plus you can pretty much use anything you’ve got in the fridge to round it out – cheese, meats, veggies, whatever. This time I used a bunch of Swiss chard from my farm, tomatoes and onion from the garden, and cheese from a nearby deli.

Step 1: Make a crust

Ingredients:
2 cups all purpose flour
1 tablespoon salt
1 cup butter (cold, cut into small cubes)
¼ cup cold water

Directions:
Whisk together the flour and salt, then mix in the butter with a pastry cutter or two knives. Don’t knead the dough with your hands or it will warm up and lose the ability to bake into a crispy, flaky crust – just hang in there for a few more minutes and keep chopping and churning till the butter breaks down into little pea-sized balls. Slowly add the water a few drops at a time, and keep mixing the dough until all the water is in there and the dough is consistent and sticky. Form the dough into a ball, roll it out in some flour, and lay the sheet of dough into a pie pan, forming it along the edges so that it is even all around. Bake at 400 degrees for 10-15 minutes until the crust gets golden brown.

Step 2: fill the crust

Ingredients:
1 cup Swiss chard, chopped into 1-inch squares
1 cup chopped tomatoes (with seeds removed)
¼ cup red onion, thinly sliced
1 cup Swiss cheese, cubed
6 large eggs or 8 small ones
1 tablespoon olive oil
2 tsp salt
½ tsp white pepper
½ tsp nutmeg
¼ cup parmesan cheese, grated

Directions:

While your crust is baking, get all of the filling ready to go. Chop your Swiss Chard and tomatoes, and toss them together in a bowl with a teaspoon of salt, white pepper and some olive oil. In a separate bowl, whisk the eggs with a pinch of salt so that the yolks and whites are well-blended, and sauté the onion on medium heat until it browns. When the crust is done, let it cool for 5 minutes or so, then lay the Swiss cheese cubes in the bottom so that they are evenly spaced.

Next spoon out the tomato/chard mixture on top of the cheese, then pour the egg mixture over everything. If it looks like the egg is going to overflow over the edge of the crust, don’t use it all, and if it looks like there isn’t enough egg to adequately fill up the crust, whisk up another egg or two and add it in. Top the whole shebang with the sautéed onion and a sprinkle of grated parmesan, then bake it at 350 degrees for 35-40 minutes or until the quiche is firm (it shouldn’t jiggle when you nudge the pan).

Let the quiche cool for several minutes – it’s best sliced and served at room temperature. Eat and enjoy!

* I’m only calling this “Swiss” because it’s got Swiss Chard and Swiss Cheese in it. My knowledge of Swiss cooking is limited to fondues and chocolate, which I have eaten with great vigor but never actually cooked.

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From Dish Rachelle:

I’ve been sick the past week, and my diet can be summarized in three items: chicken soup with rice, hot tea, and ice cream (apparently I once told the Boy that ice cream was good for sick people. In retrospect, I’m not sure if I stand by the combination of dairy and a head cold, but it’s certainly good for morale.) I was all set to get my SLD done well in advance, but then this seasonal sneeze-fest hit, and I was begrudgingly glued to the couch. Cut to last night: with the help DayQuil (a wonderdrug) I’m feeling better, ready to prepare and eat real food, provided it wasn’t too labor intensive. I wanted something healthy and colorful, so this quick meal, which rates high on deliciousness scale and low on work, was perfect. It’s also a great way to stretch a good piece of fish – sort of the upscale meatloaf of salmon preparation.

Ingredients (makes 4 cakes):

1 boneless salmon filet, roughly 3/4 of a pound
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 Jalapeño pepper, ribs and seeds removed (to taste), chopped
1 tsp. (+/-) capers
1-to-2 tbsp. chopped dill
1-to-2 tbsp. chopped parsley
1 egg
Italian breadcrumbs
Salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat oven to 350.

With the sharpest knife available, remove silver salmon skin by peeling back a corner and following it, slowly, with your knife, staying as close to the skin as possible. On an angle, slice filet into very thin pieces, and drop into a large bowl.

Add garlic, jalapeño pepper (more seeds = more spiciness), capers and chopped herbs.

Crack an egg over the fish and mix until white and yolk are well combined. Sprinkle breadcrumbs over the mixture until desired consistency is reached (the cakes should be moist enough to manipulate into patties, but not too wet). Form salmon cakes and position on a baking sheet, either with a dribble of olive oil or aluminum foil underneath to prevent sticking.

Bake salmon cakes for 20 minutes. I served them with some pan-fried sweet potato (cut into 1/2-inch squares, sauteed over medium low heat with some chopped onion, a dash of cayenne, S&P, and then finished over high heat to caramelize the sides) and asparagus spears (baked for 9 minutes with olive oil, S&P). As I write, I’m enjoying a cold salmon cake on an english muffin, with two kinds of mustard – dijon and grainy – and some baby spinach. Great for dinner, great for the leftovers, so that I don’t have to push this recovering body too hard and actually leave the house.

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From Dish Gwen:

Have you ever come across a bag of potatoes that’s been sitting around so long that the potatoes are sprouting roots? I find such things in my home more than I’d like to admit. But not to worry – those taters are still good – fry them!

I grew up eating big Sunday breakfasts composed of eggs, bacon and home fries, and frying potatoes is something I’ve always enjoyed. Listening to the popping, sizzling oil and watching the potatoes turn from white to gold gives a sense of satisfaction that can’t be matched by mashing, boiling or roasting. Basically, frying completes me, and I’ll make and eat fries for breakfast, lunch or dinner any day.

Ingredients (this is easy):
5-10 small to medium potatoes
A couple-few cups of olive oil (extra virgin if you’re feeling fancy)
Salt

Instructions (also pretty easy):
Wash and clean potatoes (cut off those eyes and roots), and slice into thin rounds about ¼ inch thick. If you want a crispier fry (like a chip), cut them thinner. Heat a cup or two of olive oil in a deep skillet until it sizzles (test for sizzle by dipping an edge of one of the potato rounds in the oil – if it doesn’t say “ssss” then it’s not hot enough yet). You don’t want to burn the oil, so keep the fire at a medium heat, and if you see or smell smoke coming off the oil, turn the heat down a little but try and keep that sizzle going.

Lay the potatoes one-by-one in the pan, and be careful not to splash – that hot oil will definitely leave a mark. As the taters sizzle away, check them to see if the bottom side is browning – once you get a nice golden color, flip the potatoes with tongs and cook until both sides are golden-brown. Remove the fries from the pan, tapping off excess oil, and lay them on a cloth or paper towel (if you have a fry basket use that instead). Salt the drying fries liberally, and serve with bacon and eggs, burgers, grilled meat, or as the best part of a vegan smorgasbord.

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