Sent it back. 10/13/17

We went out to dinner with our son here in St. George. We have a minimum that we have to eat at the restaurant associated with our subdivision so it makes sense to have our fancy dinner out there. I know that our mantra for dining in Utah is to have as few intermediary steps as possible between the meat or produce and the final dish. This means for instance “kill cow, cook cow, eat cow.” So when I ordered cheese filled ravioli in a pomodoro sauce with squash tips I knew it would probably not go well. And it did not.

Overcooked cheese ravioli and tasteless pomodoro sauce served with undercooked zucchini cubes served at slightly less than room temperature

What a pile of unappealing glop! The ravioli were stuck together under cold congealed melted cheese. Squash tips? Really? Don’t you mean zucchini cubes? Plus the messy presentation did not add any redeeming factor to the dish.

I ate one ravioli and sent the plate back.

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The past few days. 10/12/17

We have been busy getting ready for our son’s visit so cooking has been rather slap-dash and few pictures have been taken. On 10/9 we had spaghetti with a meat sauce that I unfroze and then pepped up with some fresh components. It was, being pasta, delicious!

Spaghetti with meat sauce

On 10/11/17 we had turkey sausage and Autumn soup.

I eat turkey sausage as a faux hotdog. Here it is slathered with mustard and relish (archival photo)

On 10/12/17 we made flank steak fajitas for the first night of our son’s visit.  He is a big fan of Mexican food. This came out okay but not great.

Steak fajita with non-fat yogurt crema (archival photo)


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Chicken Monday. 10/9/17

If it is Monday it must be chicken. We are creatures of habit.

Sous vide half chicken breast, rutabagas, broccolini, and gravy

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Insulated fish. 10/8/17

I am really surprised that I have not posted this dish before. I guess it fell out of favor when Chilean sea bass became so expensive. John once wrote out the recipe for me to use in a cookbook that a charitable organization was compiling. I will include the recipe after the picture. The fish comes out looking like an ice cream sandwich and it is really delicious.

Insulated fish (Chilean sea bass) with new potatoes and steamed cabbage

Recipe for insulated fish (serves four)

1 lb. firm white fish, preferably Chilean sesame bass 3/4 to 1 inch thick cut into 4 pieces, 1 clove garlic, 2 inches of carrot chopped, zest of one small lemon, 1 package of sliced mushrooms, 1/4 cup parsley, 1 small shallot, salt

Place carrot, shallot, garlic, and lemon zest in food processor. Process. Add mushrooms and parsley. Process. Put mixture in a pan with a little olive oil and some salt and cook to death. Sequester half the mixture. Make four beds out of the remaining mushroom mixture. Season fish and place on top of four beds. Top with remaining mixture. Bake in 350 F oven (upper third) for about 8 minutes then broil for 2 minutes making sure it does not burn.

John tested for doneness with a thermopen before doing the broiling. Luckily Chilean sea bass is a very forgiving fish when it comes to overcooking.

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Celery soup! 10/8/17.

While John was washing windows this morning I whipped up this vegan celery soup for lunch It is really easy and I think it could be done with a variety of vegetables. It is adapted from a recipe for celery soup on the Epicurious website.  Their recipe calls for a stick of butter. I used 2 tablespoons of olive oil instead. It also calls for using chicken stock and I used vegetable stock instead.

Celery soup

Chop an onion, a whole head of celery, one waxy potato, and 2 cloves of garlic.  Cook them in the two tablespoons of olive oil with seasoning until the onion is translucent. Add 3 cups of stock and simmer until the potatoes are cooked, about 10 minutes. Add 1/4 cup herbs and blend or food process until smooth. Adjust seasoning. Serve with a drizzle of olive oil and a celery garnish.

Can you imagine doing this with other vegetables? I can!

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High fiber side dish. 10/7/17

Since I am trying to bring down an upwardly creeping glucose level, I am making sure I eat some increased fiber especially when I eat an item with a high glycemic index content. Tonight’s no-no is a white bread hamburger roll. Tonight’s side dish is fiberful white bean and brussel sprout warm salad with a parsley lemon vinaigrette.

Cannellini beans with brussel sprouts in a lemon parsley vinaigrette

This concoction was inspired by a NYT recipe for white beans with asparagus and a tarragon dressing. I just made mine with what I had at hand.

The dressing of olive oil, lemon juice, and parsley came out really well. I think if I make it again, though, I would sub in smaller white beans. The cannellini beans were too mushy. Maybe if I had soaked the beans and cooked them instead of using canned ones they would have had more structure. But since this is supposed to be an easy side dish I think I will merely try a different canned bean.

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Penne with tuna and broccoli. 10/6/17

We have been driving for the last two days so we wanted to make something easy with ingredients that we had. Since we had brought a head of broccoli with us from home and we always have a can of tuna and some pasta around, this was an easy and tasty dinner to make.

Penne with tuna and broccoli

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