Use it or lose it: the six-month cookbook elimination race


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Use it or lose it: the six-month cookbook elimination race

Editado: Set 29, 2019, 10:29 pm

Hello Cookbookers!

This looks like just the group to help me reduce the number of cookbooks I've accumulated--way too many considering how rarely I cook, how unequipped my kitchen is, and skills basic.

My idea is to cook at least ten dishes from each cookbook I have in the next six months. Those where I can't find at least that many recipes I like and can reasonably expect to want to prepare more than once, go out.

Only the few cookbooks with sentimental value are outside competition, and the ones with literary connections.

Plus (not a small plus either), I hope this will force me to cook more and eat out less.

Today's effort:

Recipe #1 from The vegetable dishes I can't live without, "Leek chips".

Preheat oven to 250F, coat baking tray with oil (I did it very sparingly). Cut off the root and dark green ends of leeks and discard (I keep the green for soups), slice leeks into 1/4-inch slices and wash in a large bowl of cold water, separating the rings. Dry on towel, gently patting as necessary.

Distribute on tray. Then it says to "toss lightly with oil" but that makes no sense if they are laid out on the tray already. Besides, I didn't want them to be too oily--so, skipped that. Bake for 30-60 minutes until you notice them crisping and browning. Mine were done in 35-45 minutes. I didn't "stir them occasionally" because I wanted them to retain that nice round shape. Salt & pepper to taste (only pepper for me).

This was excellent (I love leeks) and enters my recipe collection.

Recipe #1 from Supermarket vegan, "Avocado-tahini dip with lemon"

I reduce the amounts to suit my singleton household. Two ripe avocados, juice of 1.5 lemons (I like lemoniness), 3 overfull tbs tahini (use more or less to taste), 1 finely chopped clove garlic, cayenne pepper, paprika, black pepper. Just a dash of salt instead of 1/2 tsp. I ran out of parsley (made a humongous bowl of tabouli yesterday), so skipped that extra.

Very tasty, although I gladly eat avocados plain, and enters the recipe collection.

Set 29, 2019, 10:20 pm

Wooo, I got member # 777!

Editado: Set 29, 2019, 10:40 pm

>2 LolaWalser: LOL a very good portent!

Great idea for eliminating cookbooks, but your exceptions pretty much apply to all the cookbooks on my shelves. :) I love the sound of the leek chips, and have done a very similar thing with brussel sprout leaves. The outside ones you take off before you cook the sprouts.

Set 30, 2019, 5:22 am

I think I'm with pgmcc of The Green Dragon on this. Think of those poor innocent little books left (sob!) homeless by this plan (snf!). I shall have to send an SOS to the Dragon's Enforcers to see that no harm befalls the books.

As a case in point, I might mention the Hungarian Cuisine book Better Half and I bought as a souvenir in Vienna in about 1981. It was only about 30 years later I started cooking from it, but now Mr Venesz's gulyás, tokánys and pörkölts are staple winter fare!

Set 30, 2019, 4:49 pm

>3 MrsLee:, >4 hfglen:

Interesting! I buy the tiniest, tightest Brussels sprouts I can find so hardly ever peel anything off, but I can see how that would work.

Ah yes. Getting rid of books ain't natural. The problem is chronic lack of space. I don't even have a proper kitchen really, it's basically a bit of counter between appliances. The cookbooks are piled in a huge vertical stash in one corner and along the counter. Many haven't been touched in years; any recipes I adopt go into my handwritten collection (the REAL cookbook) so it's rare that I need to consult the source.

But this is going to be tougher than I thought, I keep finding reasons to keep this or that. Am I seriously going to make my own cheese, in a year of Sundays? Never. But how can I give up Je fais des fromages (I make cheeses), with instructions such as (for "Aragatski"-Russie):

--half a litre of cow's milk milked the previous evening
--half a litre of goat's milk milked in the morning

Besides, it's tiny, surely I can find a snug little corner for it yet--and so it goes.

This morning (yes I actually cook at the crack of dawn) I made a thickish soup of three squash (acorn, buttercup, butternut), green bell pepper, one whole celeriac and (added at the very end) bunches and bunches of baby spinach.

Embarrassing confession: despite living in North America for the best part of the last 25 years and counting, I have never cooked with squashes other than zucchini. I've eaten winter squash dishes, but as they seem to be on the sweet side, which I don't enjoy too much, I don't crave them.

But now I'm on a mission to try as many vegs as possible and this was fantastic.

First I roasted the squashes whole at 400F. The point was to soften the skins so take them out whenever they puncture easily. Halved them, scooped out the seeds and stringy bits, then the flesh--it was easy enough simply to spoon it out. Peeled the celeriac, diced one half and grated the other (using both smaller and larger grate bore). Diced a whole green bell pepper. Oh that wonderful smell!

Heated the oil, added cumin covering the entire bottom of the pot, sauteed a clove of garlic. Would have added an onion but forgot I forgot to buy them; it was not missed though. Added the bell pepper and celeriac, gave them a few minutes in hot oil, started adding the veg stock (0.5 L, about 2 cups). Threw in all the golden, yellow, orange squash, mashing it here and there. Added water and a few dashes of salt and black pepper, let it cook on low-medium about 30 minutes (until the celeriac is easy to mash), then wilted about 200g baby spinach in it. This was great. I think some crumbled Feta or a touch of lemon would go well with this, as the squashes are (to my taste) really sweet. This is a dish I'll want to make many times again--maybe replace the butternut with another acorn, or some other less sweet squash.

But who to credit now. I first bought the squash and then looked around for recipes. I consulted a whole bunch and went looking for pictures on the internet. I used the green bell pepper because I had it in the fridge whereas someone else had written roasted red peppers. This too is how cookbooks work, isn't it.

Editado: Set 30, 2019, 5:25 pm

Mensagem removida pelo autor.

Editado: Set 30, 2019, 5:25 pm

I thought you were supposed to consult half a dozen cookbooks, then put them all away and go into the kitchen to do what you had intended all along. Or at least make noticable changes to the recipe you decide to 'follow'.

Which is why I have about 500 cookbooks. Fell down on the job. Only three new ones from our trip to England.

(Somehow an edit shows as a new message.)

Editado: Set 30, 2019, 6:58 pm

>7 MarthaJeanne:

Five hundred!! Suddenly my problem seems pathetically puny. :)

Do you find that the internet has replaced that impulse to consult the cookbooks, in part at least? I think it depends also on how long one has cooked. I didn't really start cooking until I was out of grad school, and even then it wasn't a regular thing. There wasn't much time to get attached to or learn from cookbooks, and now that I spend more time in the kitchen (or aim to), there's the internet with its ocean of info.

Set 30, 2019, 8:46 pm

It's interesting to read about having a massive number of cookbooks; I'm not sure how many I have, but most of them I've had for nearly all my life. I almost never consult any of them, though. Most of my cooking skills were from learning from my mother, my daddy (who was the better cook when it came to regular meals), and numerous relatives. Home Economics was a course that I took in Junior High, and I got in trouble now and then when I would correct the teacher (the idea that you couldn't easily replace baking powder with baking soda and salt, for example).

I do have favorite recipes from some of my books, though most of my recipes are just written on index cards, and some of them have been handed down by memory from various relatives. Baking powder biscuits, layer cakes (chocolate and yellow and white were the standards), and cooked frosting.

Now I want biscuits for dinner, and that will have to wait for another day.

I may try to count my cookbooks this evening. I'm curious, now, as to how many I have. I love librarything. It's always interesting, in so many unexpected ways.

Editado: Set 30, 2019, 10:06 pm

>9 Lyndatrue:

So cool you got to learn from your parents, I wish I had. But in my childhood we had cooks, then mum ruled the kitchen with an eye to Total Control Of Everything At All Times, and then I left for the uni. I shudder to think of some of my "experiments" in feeding myself then.

I once boiled fresh sardines pilchards to be precise, with a dim notion of making fish soup. No more need be said.

Editado: Out 1, 2019, 1:45 am

If you want to replace baking powder you need baking soda (bicarbonate of soda) and something acid. Lemon juice, cream of tartar, sour milk, molasses, honey (it takes a lot of honey), vinegar, yoghurt. Also, things leavened with soda can't wait around. They need to go right into the pan as soon as they are mixed. Most baking powder releases more carbon dioxide when it is heated. Soda has the immediate reaction, and that it it. Yeast is a great leaven, of course. Or beaten egg whites.

I learned a lot from my mother. But a lot more from living in many different cultures, and knowing people from many others. My favourite 'tourist attraction' is a supermarket. Of course, decades of getting supper on the table every evening didn't hurt. We eat out a lot more now that my husband shares the cooking. Also now that there are just the two of us. But mostly for things that we don't make ourselves, and at restaurants where my first reaction won't be that I could do it better myself for a lot less money.

The internet is useful when you need to figure a new ingredient out, but I rarely use it for cooking. For one thing, the iPad keeps blacking out just when my hands are the messiest. Really good cookbooks are great reading material. A recent favourite is Salt, fat, acid, heat.

>5 LolaWalser: For an easy fresh cheese, place a coffee filter in a (really clean) filter holder or funnel over a large bowl or glass, and start ladling in yoghurt. You can probably add more yoghurt after a while. After a few hours you can peel the filter off the cheese. Add salt to taste. This is good just like this, or with garden herbs. The whey (you will end up with at least as much whey as cheese) can replace water in bread or stews, or add it to a smoothie. I've come to the conclusion that most cheese making only makes sense if you keep milk producing animals. Supermarket milk is expensive for this, and the processing is not good for the cheese process. But it's interesting to read about. I'll let someone else keep the goats.

Out 1, 2019, 6:38 am

>7 MarthaJeanne: Wot? Only 500? My aim is to have at least one from every country / region in the world, plus Better Half's collection and those we inherited from the Aged Mother. (Of course, finding ones from, say, the South Sandwich Islands is a mission :-) )

Out 1, 2019, 7:23 am

I only need cookbooks from countries we have visited or know people from.

Out 1, 2019, 7:45 am

>12 hfglen: Must ... not ... make ... joke ... about ... lunch ... recipes ....

Out 1, 2019, 10:23 am

>5 LolaWalser: I recently went through my cookbooks with the goal of eliminating the ones I knew I wouldn't use again. I pulled them all off the shelf. When I was done an hour or so later, I thought I could do without one of them. Then I put it back on the shelf because getting rid of one seemed pitiful. :)

Yes, the internet has affected how much I search in my cookbooks. So easy to find a recipe fast for an ingredient I want to use, or a technique I need to know suddenly. I still use my cookbooks as inspirational source material though. I read them through, try out various recipes in them until I have a handle on the methods and flavors of the culture or era, then they repose on my shelves to be looked at fondly, sometimes pulled down as a reference, etc. Quite a few are historical and I only refer to them when I am trying to revive or learn an old cooking method.

Out 1, 2019, 11:53 am

>14 haydninvienna: Difficult, there. 99% of the inhabitants are penguins.

Out 1, 2019, 5:30 pm

hfglen (#12):

Not quite the South Sandwich Islands, but there's a new cookbook (The Island Kitchen) from the Indian Ocean islands (Mauritius, Seychelles, etc.) that looks interesting. I have a sample on the tablet that I'm perusing - our current rule is that we do not have room for more new physical cookbooks, so either we have a one-in-one-out policy or we get them in electronic form. Here's a review.

Editado: Out 1, 2019, 7:56 pm

>11 MarthaJeanne:

That sounds too easy not to try! Does the fat content of the yoghurt matter? I buy the highest I can find in the ordinary supermarket chains here, and it's 6% only. I especially like the idea of using the whey later--I love it when I can use everything about a food.

I still sometimes daydream of making my own mozzarella (practically subsisted on it plus tomatoes when I lived in Italy and perennially hunger for that squishy goodness) but I can't get over the hurdle of finding unpasteurised milk, even cow's, let alone water buffalo. Apparently raw milk is illegal in Canada. I get why people want to be cautious but it still seems too harsh. People have drunk milk straight from farm animals for millennia, we can't have gone so fragile in a century. The imported fresh (well, "fresh") buffalo mozzarella, when it shows, is insanely expensive.

>12 hfglen:

Nice idea--do you know how many countries you've covered so far?

>14 haydninvienna:

Need... to... hear... the ... joke...

>15 MrsLee:

Ha, I can see that's probably what will happen here too. If anything, the way recs for cookbooks fly around here, I'll count myself lucky if I don't end up adding to the stash!

It's not often these days that I feel friendly about the internet but the cooking vids are precious. Being able to see what people do, compare versions--especially for a basic cook like me, it's become indispensable.

>17 lorax:

Finally someone who ran out of cookbook space too! :)

One in, one out is an attractive idea. If only I could trust myself to abide by the rules...

Out 1, 2019, 8:10 pm

>17 lorax: I kind of decided the opposite because I find that I want to be able to flip back and forth for reference in my cookbooks, and write notes in the margins, and possibly my age? I've tried cooking from a couple of ebook cookbooks and I didn't like it, so vowed to only buy paper cookbooks. I do take photos of internet recipes and store those on my tablet and I love using them. So I am inconsistent. :)

Out 2, 2019, 3:52 am

>18 LolaWalser: I use the standard 3.6% yoghurt, and am happy with my results. Consistancy varies with the length of time you let it drip. If I wanted a richer result, I suppose one route would be to mix sour cream or creme fraiche into the yoghurt at the beginning. The other route would be to let it drip overnight, and then loosen it with heavy cream.

My results have been a pleasant spread for bread, or new potatoes and I haven't really experimented beyond that.

Out 2, 2019, 7:25 am

>17 lorax: I have Genuine Cuisine of Mauritius, a curiosity mainly memorable for a recipe for curried monkey -- vervet monkeys are a pest here.

>18 LolaWalser: No, but I could call up my catalogue if you really want to know.

Out 2, 2019, 12:21 pm

>20 MarthaJeanne:

I'll try it with a similar one then. The 6% yoghurt is an all-around convenience because I don't normally buy any heavier dairy products, it replaces sour cream for me.

>21 hfglen:

Oh, I thought you kept track. Only if it interests you! This reminds me--must un-dig that huge Mediterranean recipe book I have somewhere, with entries by adjoining countries. That would up my score somewhat.

Out 2, 2019, 2:08 pm

I'm going to make some tonight. I had the choice between the 3.6% and 10% Greek yoghurt. I checked, that is made with a combination of milk and cream. But I didn't buy it. We often have sour cream around, but usually I prefer the yoghurt.

Out 2, 2019, 3:05 pm

>23 MarthaJeanne:

Is it thick enough to replace commercial cream cheese? I'm thinking I haven't had lox & bagels in forever and I'd never buy cream cheese for anything else.

Out 2, 2019, 3:42 pm

Thick enough, yes, different mouth feel, because none of the various additives they put in the commercial cheese.

Out 2, 2019, 4:44 pm

I like the sound of that.

Out 3, 2019, 9:56 am

I've made lovely soft cheese (I added herbs to mine) with Greek Gods plain yogurt. I buy the kind that is not low fat. It was a fun project with my great-niece. Pretty easy, too. Mix in herbs, pour into cheese cloth which is in a strainer over a bowl, let sit in refrigerator for a day or two, depending on how stiff you want your cheese. I used herbs which had too strong of a flavor the first time.

Editado: Out 3, 2019, 9:58 am

If you add the herbs (and/or salt) after the straining you have better control over how strong the flavour is. Also the whey is more usable.

Editado: Out 3, 2019, 6:59 pm

I made a very simple lentil dish I often had but never prepared myself before. For this recipe I'm crediting a cookbook although I modified it in notable ways.

Classic vegetarian cooking from the Middle East & North Africa, Recipe #1, "Lentil pottage" (mujaddara)

Salloum writes that this is the dish for which Esau sold his birthright to Jacob--intriguing eh!--but what really caught my eye was replacing rice with bulghur (I use rice every now and then, but prefer not to, exception being for such stuff as beans & rice, and dolmas... and that's it I guess.)

Rinse a cup of lentils and bring to boil in 5 cups water (I used 4). Decrease heat and simmer (he says 30 minutes but if you use red lentils like I did--because supposedly that's probably what Esau tasted--your lentils will cook much faster. Say 15 minutes.) Slice 2 large onions and saute them in oil (olive oil with avocado oil for me).

First point of divergence: Salloum says to add the onions to the lentils, along with 1/4 cup bulghur, and salt, pepper and 1/2 tsp cumin. I did not do this, instead I crisped the thinly sliced onions and set them aside.

I added the bulghur to the lentils, salt, pepper and 1 whole tsp cumin and cooked the lot until the bulghur all expanded--about 5-6 minutes.

Salloum then adds 2 tbs butter. I skipped this.

The result was very tasty (what can possibly go wrong with lentils and cumin?) but mushier than I like--the curse of red lentils. I covered them with the onions and some parsley. Yoghurt went great with this.

I'll try it next time with green lentils.

Also a tip about the bulghur--I only had two grades, the finest which I use in making tabouli, and the slightly coarser which I use for thickening some seafood dishes... I used the latter, but I'd recommend using the largest bulghur you can find, so that both the lentils and the bulghur preserve their shape.

Editado: Out 8, 2019, 12:37 pm

Potluck Sunday with friends is a good day for home cooking. My contribution was

A platter of figs, Recipe #1, "Tomato Bread"

Slice good crusty country bread and toast. Rub a halved clove of garlic gently across the toast. Rub a sliced ripe tomato, hard, reddening the toast. Top with a nice anchovy and sprinkle some olive oil. Just lovely.


Complete Indian cooking, Recipe #1, "Bangalore Chicken Curry"

Slice finely two large onions and saute in oil or ghee (oil for me) about 5 minutes until soft and golden. Add 6 chopped cloves garlic, tsp turmeric, 3/4 ground coriander, 3/4 ground cumin (I added whole tsp of each) and cook stirring another 3 minutes.

Take a bunch of cilantro (leaves mostly) and 3 large deseeded chopped fresh green chiles and blend into a paste. I used a mortar (I really need to get a mechanical device of some sort for these jobs), so took my time--used it to brown the chicken a little with the onions (1 fresh chicken cut up in 8 pieces)--eventually got it shall we say chunky-pasty.

Add the paste to the skillet and coat chicken pieces in it as completely as possible. Let cook about 10 minutes, turning the chicken a few times.

Add 1.25 cup unsweetened coconut milk (I added the entire 400 ml can as it's not that much more), 5/8 cup chicken stock (again a weird amount! I added 3/4 cup--of chicken bouillon, sorry, just don't have the freezer room to stock stock) and salt to taste.

Bring to boil then lower heat, cover, simmer @ 50 minutes, stirring and turning the chicken occasionally. When done, stir in tbs lemon juice, taste and adjust salt if necessary.

Take out the chicken and increase the heat to reduce the curry sauce to desired consistency. Pour over chicken.

This was just so damn finger-lickin' good! First time I cooked with coconut milk! (I have had a prejudice against all things coconut.) The big glop of congealed cream startled me a bit.

Editado: Jan 19, 2020, 2:16 pm

Need a master post to keep track of cookbooks and # of recipes.

1. The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without---------------------------1

2. Supermarket vegan----------------------------------------------------1

3. Classic vegetarian cooking from the Middle East & North Africa-----1

4. A platter of figs and other recipes-------------------------------------1

5. Complete Indian cooking----------------------------------------------6

6. Down with boring old food!-------------------------------------------2

7. Biscotti: Recipes from the Kitchen of The American Academy in Rome, The Rome Sustainable Food Project--1

8. The Voluptuous Vegan-----------------------------------------------2

Out 7, 2019, 2:18 pm

Chilis or chiles?

Editado: Out 8, 2019, 1:44 am

>32 LolaWalser: It has been my experience that "Chilis" refers to more than one pot (or container, or recipe) of "Chili" where "Chiles" is the plural of the various vegetables that are known as "Chiles" and are used to make Chili.

Clear as mud?

Out 8, 2019, 12:37 pm

Thanks, that helps. Chili for the dish, chile for the veg. Will correct above. Hmm, gets a bit confusing when I think I just bought "chili" powder spice... but nm, from now on, fresh veg=chile.

Out 8, 2019, 3:06 pm

I would spell both chilli.

Out 8, 2019, 5:17 pm

MarthaJeanne (#35):

Yeah, that's the British English spelling.

LolaWalser (#34):

Powdered chiles, with no additional ingredients, should be labeled as "chile". "Chili powder" is usually a blend of many spices, including chiles but also cumin and others (often black pepper and oregano).

I have, um, many different varieties of dried chiles in my kitchen, and several varieties of powdered chiles. I do not buy chili powder mix - I make my own. I have my cookbook purchasing under control, at least as far as physical cookbooks, but I'm a sucker for spices.

Out 9, 2019, 4:21 am

>36 lorax: I have neither under control. Trying to decide right now whether to throw my current szechuan pepper away and harvest my tree or just keep using last year's. The darn tree keeps getting bigger and producing more.

Out 9, 2019, 6:26 am

>36 lorax: Ah! Now I begin to understand at least some tex-mex recipes for chilli con carne. Here chilli powder is pure ground dried chillies (the hot kind), and ladling it into the stew by the tablespoon (or cup) full would rapidly make the result inedible. What proportion of the mix do the authors of those tex-mex recipes expect to be the hot stuff?

Out 9, 2019, 12:34 pm

>35 MarthaJeanne:

Heh, my spelling's all over the place already.

>36 lorax:

Oh my, thanks for mentioning that, I had no idea--this is the first time I bought that!--because it comes up a lot in that Indian cooking book.

If you don't mind sharing, what's your recipe? I'm on board for making my own spice mixes when possible (just the other day I made garam masala according to a colleague's recipe--oh what heavenly smell...)

Out 14, 2019, 9:01 pm

The Indian book jumps ahead of the pack with two new recipes:

Complete Indian cooking, recipe #2, "Rice with vegetables"

This caught my eye because it uses fresh and frozen vegs and I wanted to use up the remains of the latter I had. Amounts I used were reduced from the original but keeping to the ratios more or less.

Sliced one zucchini, diced two bell peppers, and mixed that with @ 2 oz frozen vegs. Set aside to defrost.

Heat oil (or ghee) in a large saucepan, add half the spice mixture and fry gently 2 minutes.

The spice mixture: 1 tbs ground cumin, 1 tbs ground coriander, 0.5 tbs chili powder, 1 tsp turmeric, 2 tsp black peppercorns (crushed), 1 tsp salt.

Stir the vegs into the frying spice mix to coat them with it; then take out and keep warm.

Heat more oil in the saucepan and add 2 thinly sliced onions, 3 thinly sliced garlic cloves, and 1 3-inch ginger root. I forgot to buy fresh ginger root and had to add powdered ginger, argh.

Add 1 3-inch piece of cinnamon stick, 10 cardamom pods, 10 cloves, and (optional) 0.5 tbs lovage seeds. I skipped the last ingredient as I'd never even seen it in the wild (i.e. grocery) and must investigate more about it.

Add the remaining spice mixture and fry the lot another 2 minutes.

Add 1 cup washed basmati rice to the pan and stir well until all the grains are coated with spices. Pour in boiling water (about 1.5 cups at first for me) and boil gently uncovered until the rice is cooked but firm. Stir occasionally to prevent sticking and add more water as necessary.

The recipe then says to drain the rice and mix with the vegs, but I just let the water cook away (my basmati is whole grain so takes a bit of cooking) and added the vegs to the pan to mix it all up.

Then it says to scatter golden raisins and slivered almonds, I skipped that.

This was some of the yummiest rice and vegs I ever had and definitely the perfumiest. I think Indian cooking will become a must for me just for the way it makes a place smell.

Also made Recipe # 3, Raita--perfect side dish for the above:

2 cups plain yoghurt, mixed with 6 thinly sliced scallions, 1 chopped (deseeded etc.) fresh green chile, 1/2 thinly sliced English cucumber. First salt the cuke and let it rest 30 minutes, then pour off the water before mixing into the yoghurt.

Out 15, 2019, 6:37 am

>40 LolaWalser: I've seen at least a dozen raita recipes, all with yoghurt flavoured with different things -- spices, boiled potatoes, tomatoes, you name it. Some of them are great.

Out 20, 2019, 9:17 pm

>41 hfglen:

Sounds interesting. Habits are funny things, I'm so used to having yoghurt plain I never really considered mixing it up. Well, except for tzatziki now and then, which this was similar to.

This week saw another THREE recipes from the Indian cookbook done. I had about 750g ground beef I wanted to get rid of, divided it like Gaul in partes tres, and made two types of meatballs and stuffed peppers.

Complete Indian cooking, Recipe #4, "Kofta in yoghurt" (amounts reduced from the original)

Mixed about 1 cup ground beef, 1 cup bread crumbs, 1 finely chopped fresh green chile, 0.5 onion, finely chopped piece of ginger root, 1 tsp ground coriander, some salt, 1 beaten egg; shaped into meatballs--I got about 10--they were not huge.

Heat the oil in a pan add meatballs cook until well browned and done. Drain off excess oil on paper.

Pour yoghurt (about 0.5 cup) into a bowl, add meatballs, garnish with chopped cilantro.

Simple--yummy--can't be beat.

Recipe #5, "Meatball curry"

First put together the spice mix: tsp turmeric, tsp chili powder, tsp ground coriander, tsp powdered ginger, tsp ground cumin, tsp salt.

Mix 1 cup ground beef with chopped up 0.5 onion, 1 garlic clove, and half the spice mix. Stir well and bind with beaten egg. Shape into balls.

Heat oil in the pan, add the meatballs, fry about 5 minutes. Remove, drain, keep warm.

Add 0.5 onion, 1 garlic clove to the pan, cook gently until soft (4-5 minutes). Add the remaining half of the spice mix and cook about 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Add the meatballs and coat them in spices. Add 0.5 cup water, bring to boil, then lower heat, cover and simmer gently 30 minutes. Garnish with mint or cilantro.

These were also great. Pretty foolproof recipes so far, I'd say.

Recipe #6, "Bell peppers stuffed with beef, rice, and tomatoes"

Heat oil in the pan, cook 1 chopped onion until golden. Add spices: tsp ground coriander, 0.5 tsp ground cumin, 0.5 tsp chili powder, and cook about 2 minutes. Add ground beef and cook, stirring, until browned. Add 3 tbs rice and salt to taste, cook for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and let cool.

Slice 2 large bell peppers (mine were green) lengthwise, discard seeds and cores, fill shells with the beef/rice mix.

Heat more oil in the pan (if necessary), add the bell peppers. Pour a little of the canned tomato juice into the peppers and the remaining juice and tomatoes into the pan. Bring to simmer and cook for another 25 minutes, until the rice is tender.

I adore stuffed bell peppers and this was a fantastic variation, what with the Indian spices, nice for a change.

It's really good to be getting a grasp on how these spices are used. The Mediterranean/Middle Eastern cuisine which is my base (and what I love best) favours fresh herbs more than spices, apart from those that became traditional (pepper, cinnamon, cloves, vanilla...), so I have a lot of insecurity about handling them. But none about eating!

Out 21, 2019, 2:28 am

>24 LolaWalser: Just out of curiosity I bought the 10% fat Greek yoghurt. Tasting it, it seemed a lot less acid than the 3.6% yoghurt I am used to.

The Greek yoghurt took longer to start dripping than I am used to, and the filter filled up before I had the whole package in. I got only about 1/4 liter of whey instead of over 1/2 liter with the 3.6%. This means, of course that I have a lot more cheese. It is creamier, less acid, and would make a good replacement for cream cheese in any uncooked use. I added herbs to part of it, and bought spice mix for liptauer cheese to another part.

Out 21, 2019, 12:44 pm

I've never seen 10% yoghurt here but then I wasn't looking for it either... I'll try this with my 6%--still need to buy some cheesecloth first (also need to start writing shopping list down instead of relying on memory!)

Out 22, 2019, 10:14 am

>44 LolaWalser: If you have clean cotton or muslin, you can use that instead of cheesecloth.

Out 22, 2019, 12:58 pm

Except for some dusting cloths, no free-form textiles around, I'm afraid! But I need to get some cheesecloth anyway, it's what I use for the bouquet garni of herbs in soups etc.--only the last piece I bought lasted a good six years before getting used up.

Out 31, 2019, 7:17 pm

Spent half a day rushing from one annoying appointment to another in heavy rain but at least was able to go home earlier--this was important because I've a colleague coming for dinner--and got lucky in the grocery with a beautiful octopus!--was thinking along the lines of salmon fillets but what could be more perfect for Halloween than Cthulhu:

There wasn't time to check ALL the cookbooks for a recipe to change from my usual but I discovered that, shockingly, neither of the two Marcella Hazans nor Julia Child include any octopus recipes. Tanis gives one recipe with boiling and while I'm sure he knows what's he about; no no no--gimme baked or grilled any time.

So I just did what I usually do, prepped the octo and laid it out on top of some tomato, onion, shallots, garlic; poured a bit of olive oil on top, plus salt and pepper, and herbs (rosemary, thyme, bay leaf) mostly on the veg.

Cover with foil and make a pouch. Bake in oven at 240 F for two hours. (Thirty minutes to go...)

I am doing a cookbook recipe for one of the sides, so, Down with boring old food!, Recipe # 1, "Nut and Parmesan ravioli"

I made them yesterday and dried overnight so the only thing that's left is to boil them and garnish.

Combined 100g flour and 1 egg, plus two tbs olive oil and a pinch of salt. Kneaded the dough for several minutes then let rest 1 hour. In the meantime, prepared some cubes of Parmesan. Divided the dough and rolled out each portion as thinly as possible. It wasn't perfectly thin because it turned out my rolling pin had done gone crack'd from side to side (gives you an idea how often I use it--never, basically) so I was rolling the dough in jerky little spurts to avoid scoring it with the cracked side.

Cut the rolled out dough into strips and wrap each around a Parmesan cube and a nut (I used walnuts).

The end result were 8 unpretty dumplings I'm definitely NOT calling "ravioli". Nevertheless, I don't see how these chubby boys could possibly fail to be super tasty.

The recipe calls for 100 ml cream to pour over them and garnish it with chives. I'm OK with chives but will be using yoghurt instead of cream. A little grated nutmeg and it will be perfect.

Some vegs roasted in the grill pan and a cup of rice to go with. Olives and hummus.

Out 31, 2019, 10:03 pm

Love the idea of octopus for Halloween dinner.

Nov 1, 2019, 5:06 pm

>48 MrsLee:

That was some rare serendipitous perfection! The grocery I went to carries fresh octopus and squid not-so-rarely, but not regularly either, and their other outlet I almost went to, never. Great ending to a crummy day.

The Parmesan-Walnut dumplings were indeed yummy and so very filling they were not, as I feared, too few for two. Besides Parmesan is such a strong cheese I don't know that one could eat lots in one sitting--I did not skimp on those cubes for sure.

Nov 3, 2019, 10:35 pm

All that talk about sweet things in Mrs Lee's thread made me check and yes indeed--I have a grand total of one (1) recipe book dedicated to sweets--cookies, as it happens. Poor little solitary Biscotti: Recipes from the Kitchen of The American Academy in Rome, The Rome Sustainable Food Project.

I've made maybe three sweet things ever, so this recipe percentually ups my score something crazy. And omigod, it's so fab, I'm so glad I chose it first.

Biscotti, Recipe #1, "Honey and cardamom cookies"

Ingredients: 350g flour, 3g baking soda, 6g ground cardamom {I always buy pods only, so I freshly ground the seeds from about 30-40 pods--green cardamom}, pinch of salt, 2.5ml rose water, 60 ml honey (I had manuka honey), 2 tbs milk, 60g butter, 80g granulated sugar, 1 large egg, 40g confectioner's sugar (did not have this, it's for dusting the cookies so skipped it).

Mix flour, baking soda, cardamom, salt. In a small bowl mix together honey, milk and rose water (omg the aromas!!!). Cream butter and sugar, then add egg and mix until smooth and fluffy.

Add dry ingredients to the butter mixture, then the liquid ingredients, mix until combined.

Wrap the dough and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Remove from fridge and divide the dought in two. Make logs of each portion, about 4cm in diameter. Wrap the logs in parchment paper then bag and freeze for at least 1 hour or up to 2 weeks.

When ready to make cookies, bring dough to RT, slice logs into 5mm thick slices (mine were somewhat thicker), and bake 10-12 minutes at 180 Celsius (350 F) until the edges turn golden.

Unbelievably delicious, to smell and taste.

Nov 4, 2019, 2:23 am

Sound lovely, but I use cheap honey for baking because a lot of the healthy aspects of honey are destroyed by heat.

Nov 4, 2019, 2:01 pm

>51 MarthaJeanne:

I wasn't even aware of any health aspects to honey! What, it's not just sugar?

Yeah the manuka honey (from New Zealand I think) is on the expensive side but it's the only organic, one-country type to be found in the stores I usually go to here. However, as I don't normally eat honey--I use it practically only to add to ginger infusions when sick--I don't mind the occasional splurge.

In Europe I had a habit of buying honey because there were so many wonderful fragrant varieties locally, organically made--lavender honey, rosemary, sage, acacia, wildflower etc. and I knew for certain what they were. Lost the habit in North America, especially Canada where the most common product is a dodgy mix of domestic and imported honey, origin unspecified.

I don't think there are any bees in Canada. I've never seen a country so devoid of insects. This summer I fell into rapture on seeing a single ladybug on a wall.

Editado: Nov 4, 2019, 2:14 pm

Manuka honey is supposed to have strong antibacterial properties and help heal wounds and such- that's why it's so expensive.

In Austria we're beginning to see more dead insects on our windscreen. It was getting so that you could drive for hours without having to clean, so this is an improvement.

Nov 4, 2019, 3:52 pm

Interesting about manuka, had no idea.

Yes, poor bugs, we've done for them and everything else...

Nov 20, 2019, 7:33 pm

No new recipes but I chanced on a new grocery, a Korean chain, and picked up a bunch of gai lan AKA Chinese broccoli--I've loved this veg in the restaurants, why have I never cooked it myself?--anyway, now I did. Such lovely crunchy stems. Blanched it about 5 minutes then sauteed with garlic--wonderful brilliant dark green colour--had no sauce--just a bit of salt, black pepper, lemon.

Also picked up fresh mackerel fillets and just cooked them in the saute pan after the gai lan 4-5 minutes on each side until the skin was crispy. Fantastic.

Oh yes. The cheesecloth and a new colander have been secured. Next up, experimental cheesemaking.

Nov 21, 2019, 6:42 am

Late to this thread. I've a measly 60 books tagged as cookbook, and some of those are great british beer guides. But given I seem to share the approach in >5 LolaWalser: skim a few indexes and make something up along those lines (not helped by OtherHalf being allergic to several common ingrediants), I probably have enough. I do enjoy cooking though, and have more or less finished having the kitchen extended so that I've plenty of space to do so, bliss.

Have you actually removed any cookbooks yet?

Editado: Nov 21, 2019, 8:01 am

>56 reading_fox: Cooking is so much easier since the boys grew up and left home. I can avoid strawberries and mussels (me) and white carbohydrates (diabetic spouse), but I had one son with egg intolerance, and another who broke out if he ate anything from the squash/melon family. (Like the small amount of pickle relish some companies put in certain dips.) And both of them went hyper if they ate chocolate anything. The third son didn't seem to have any allergies. Must be something wrong there!

Have you ever had birthday apple strudel? Strudel looks good with candles! Or birthday shortcake with a choice of fruits? I like sour cherry or peach. But the candles aren't easy to position. It's hard making desserts when you can't use egg, strawberry, or chocolate and have to really restrict sugar. But I never let anything restrict my cookbook purchases.

Nov 22, 2019, 9:53 pm

Have you actually removed any cookbooks yet?

Heh, no--I haven't even unearthed all of them yet... March 31 is the deadline. But at this rate they are all for the chopping block!

Nov 26, 2019, 12:05 pm

Hey now!

Yes it's tiny, I just wanted to see what happens... I like it!

Nov 26, 2019, 12:24 pm

Nov 26, 2019, 2:57 pm

>60 MrsLee:

It looked so cute I was tempted to nurse it along a few more days but then I got hungry and ate it. /monster

Incidentally, how long CAN this cheese stay out? Or do y'all do this in the fridge? I keep a chilly apt so leaving it out for a night didn't bother me but now I wonder.

Nov 26, 2019, 3:20 pm

I do it on the counter. For one thing, yoghurt doesn't easily get infected with other bacteria or mold. For another, I just don't have space in the refrigerator.

Nov 26, 2019, 3:31 pm

>62 MarthaJeanne:

Over how many days? Also, do you squeeze it occasionally? It looks as if it could almost be made solid by and by.

Nov 26, 2019, 3:50 pm

I generally just let it drip overnight. Since I use a coffee filter, squeezing or other manipulating is not advisable.

Nov 26, 2019, 6:53 pm

I do mine in the fridge. Live in a warm climate and we try not to fight that too much by using a lot of a/c. I let it go about 3 days, sometimes on the second day I will gently squeeze to see if more whey comes out. I think it could be left longer, and properly squeezed. The last batch I made kept over a week in the fridge without molding. It did lose a bit more whey on the plate. That was a batch of half yogurt, half sour cream.

Editado: Jan 2, 2020, 2:33 pm

Well December was a bust as a health crisis left me with no appetite to speak of, but it's time to shift into gear again... Yesterday I made lunch (more of a dinner really) for a jet-lagged neighbour-friend and nibbled along. For the vegs I braised chopped kale with garlic and a touch of pepper, lemon, red chile. A weak commercial (why can't one buy decent bread in North America?) approximation of "pane rustico" from the freezer, gently toasted only to soften and bring out the bready aroma.

The main, Recipe #2 from Down with boring old food!, "Pork chops in milk and cinnamon":

Heat (don't boil) 2 cups milk with 3 tbs cinnamon. Let it cool, pour over the meat (four not-large, boneless chops was the case) and marinate at RT 1 hour.

Heat a skillet (no oil), place chops in, pour half the marinade over them and cook until the liquid is well reduced (10-15 minutes). Sprinkle the chops with 1 tbs cinnamon and cook on both sides. Season with salt and pepper. Deglaze the skillet with crème fraîche or sour cream (um, I used water) and pour over the chops.

This was nice. I'm fairly used to cinnamon added to meat (beef and lamb) in Middle Eastern recipes, and it worked well with pork chops too.

Editado: Jan 19, 2020, 2:19 pm

Two super simple recipes from The Voluptuous Vegan:

#1, "Asian Slaw" (these are the cookbook's amounts, I reduced everything by half)

Place 6 cups shredded Napa cabbage into a large bowl, salt (1 tsp), mix, and place a weighted plate on top. Let rest 30 minutes until the cabbage has wilted, then drain off the collected liquid.

Add 3 minced cloves garlic, 1 minced red jalapeño (deseeded), 2 tbs minced fresh ginger, 1/2 cup chopped cilantro, 2 tbs apple cider vinegar, toss well together, let rest 30 minutes.

#2 "Roasted Chickpea Nuts"

Preheat the oven to 375 F. Mix rinsed chickpeas (she specifies using canned, 1 can, as a shortcut) with 2 tbs oil, salt, 1 tbs fresh lemon juice, 1 tbs minced ginger, and cayenne pepper to taste. Spread out on parchment paper and roast 45 minutes, stirring a few times, or until the chickpeas are shrunken and brown.

The chickpeas were delish. I'm not a fan of cabbage but am on quest to eat as much veg and various veg and ALL the veg that's out there, and this was a fine quick salad. I actually had only it and chickpeas and peanuts for a meal and it all went together great, lots of flavour and very filling.

Mar 16, 2020, 2:46 pm

Of all the things that I could imagine ending this project, a viral pandemic wasn't even among the top 50...

I'm not in the mood for tossing books out, as ordinarily I'd drop them off at the library or the community centre, not throw into garbage, and yet I'm also not eager to look up recipes where I can't be sure I'll get the ingredients.

I haven't gone out of my way to stockpile anything. My cupboard space is limited (half of it is books), my fridge-cum-freezer just the condo average... In normal times I still behave like a European, buying small amounts of fresh stuff almost daily.

I've enough rice (figures--because I don't like it it lasts me forever!), some cans of beans, tomatoes, sardines... some frozen mixed veg, three chicken breasts... a boatload of spices (except bay leaves! aargh!)... today I got a carton of eggs, a bag of onions, some Feta cheese, and an armful of herbs, spinach, and celeriac.

Am cooking a beet/leek soup. Smells like heaven.

Mar 16, 2020, 7:16 pm

>68 LolaWalser: We're living in interesting times, unfortunately!

I'm very impressed with your ambition to cook 10 recipes per book - I've been trying to do something similar but have contented myself with one per book (and no time limit - I started in 2012 and have got about halfway through my collection).

Mar 16, 2020, 7:43 pm

>69 Sovay:

Now that is a far more sensible approach, which I'm adopting as of this moment. :)

Mar 16, 2020, 9:39 pm

>68 LolaWalser: I told my husband, I don't know about anything else, but I have enough spices to last for several years if we get shut in! We did make a run to stock up on some fresh veggies, meat and coffee.

Mar 18, 2020, 10:42 am

>71 MrsLee:

Yeah--I guess I'll end up with handfuls of rice on the menu--but at least it'll be flavourful!

Made a spanakopita to use up the phyllo dough I had in the freezer, with yuge amounts of fresh mint, dill, basil--aromatic wonder.

The stores around me suddenly have crazy prices on meat. I only wanted some ordinary beef bones for soup--no luck, but got the last pack of oxtail for double their price.

Abr 14, 2020, 10:17 pm

I wanted to use up the cake flour I had left over since the time I made cardamom cookies and decided to try making Faschingskrapfen from Die besten Mehlspeisen aus Österreich. Sad failure: the dough didn't rise, or not sufficiently, and although I soldiered on to the end and the result was edible (moderately enjoyably), it had absolutely nothing to do with the Platonic ideal of this dessert and let's not speak more of it.

On the upside, since I then had 6 egg whites to do with as I pleased, I predictably thought of the simplest thing I could do with them (let's face it, the only thing I could think of) and made meringues with a dash of rose water. To my infinite surprise, these turned out near-perfect--well in taste and consistency; as to looks, decidedly homely. Not winning any meringue beauty contests for sure.

But, whatever, I was so chuffed to have pulled off that crisp meltingness.

Editado: Abr 15, 2020, 1:20 am

My 'go to' recipe with egg whites is also meringues - but with a package of poppy seed filling mixed in. If I don't do any other baking in Advent, I make Pannetone, which leaves me the whites for the Mohnmakronnen.

Abr 15, 2020, 2:20 am

I freeze leftover egg whites in ice cube trays as they're really useful in small quantities for coating things (such as fish fillets) that then need coating in flour or breadcrumbs.

Abr 15, 2020, 4:37 am

I don't cook things that way, and unless I've got enough for the Mohn cookies just throw extra whites away. I would just never use them. (My former way of dealing with them was to put them in a small container in the back of the refrigerator. Then, when I came across the dried out moldy mess I could throw it away with no guilt, but some hassle. I've decided to ignore the guilt and save myself the hassle.)

Abr 15, 2020, 7:14 am

>76 MarthaJeanne: If I had multiple leftover egg whites I probably would throw them away, as I'm not sure what else I'd do with them other than make meringues which I wouldn't eat! But a single one (in two or three portions) is actually useful to me.

Abr 15, 2020, 7:28 am

I've often thought that recipes for baked goods that have an egg white wash are mostly to use up extra whites. I like them better without the egg whites.

Abr 15, 2020, 12:29 pm

>75 Sovay:

Hmm, interesting... *note*

>76 MarthaJeanne:

My brother was a madly finicky eater when he was little. There was a period when he decided egg yolks were gross and would eat only the white of the egg. That was my only other idea, to toss them in a frying pan.

I suppose they could go into a hot soup too for some extra body.

Abr 15, 2020, 1:15 pm

Egg drop soup is a lovely way to use whites. I usually make an omelet or scrambled eggs 🥚 the next day because it's easier.

I have 2 recipes from my grandmother's mother. One is for a golden cake that uses no whites, the other is an angel food cake. Neither turn out especially well for me, as the instructions and ingredient amounts are rather vague.

Abr 15, 2020, 4:13 pm

I doubt I'll ever bake something really well... dessert I mean. It seems to involve making more mess than cooking almost anything else. (Lifetime of labwork makes me anxious about the state of working surfaces, equipment etc.)

Abr 15, 2020, 4:36 pm

I tend to make fruit desserts these days, with boys all grown and flown, and my husband diabetic. My old Fanny Farmer has a 'Cottage Pudding' recipe that is a simple one bowl cake. But if you start rhubarb (and ginger) roasting in the pan before you mix up the batter, or slice apples in with cinnamon, or a mix of apricots and sour cherries... And top the fruit with the batter and bake it, you end up with an easy dessert that may not wow the eyes, but it does a good job for the taste buds. Just top the hot cake with some quality ice cream. I often add spices to the batter. I also use whole wheat flour and reduce the sugar, so that Jerry can indulge, too.

Abr 16, 2020, 6:58 am

Somewhere I read that in the Middle Ages, Portuguese nuns used incredible quantities of egg white to starch their habits, and therefore invented the well-known range of Portuguese desserts with improbable numbers of egg yolks to use up the bits that would otherwise go to waste. What their clothes smelt of a day or 2 down the line is best not imagined.

Abr 16, 2020, 6:02 pm

>80 MrsLee: You've made me want to go search my recipes, now. I have precisely those recipes, and I admit that it's been a very long time since I made either, but when I did, they were both delicious. They hale from my distant youth, when I lived for a time on a ranch. The men ate five meals a day (two of them light, the other three massive), and a slice of egg yolk cake with buttercream frosting was always a welcome entry for the last meal.

Abr 17, 2020, 12:17 am

>84 Lyndatrue: I would be interested to see your recipes if you find them, although I won't be making much cake for awhile.

Actually, I made a cake this morning which is delicious. I used the dregs from my wine making to create a sourdough starter. It is a very ugly color, but quite active and smells wonderful. I used that to make a cake with some of my homemade fruit mincemeat.

Abr 17, 2020, 2:51 am

>85 MrsLee: I used the dregs from my wine making to create a sourdough starter: you get A+ in creativity at the very least.

Abr 17, 2020, 9:49 am

I have been reading many back posts and found this one. Making cheese I have never done. I have no idea how many cook books I own. I like the local ones that are usually from churches and small organizations. I am like MarthaJeanne as when we travel we go to the local grocery stores/supermarkets. I still have powdered ginger I bought in London many years ago.

Abr 17, 2020, 12:08 pm

>82 MarthaJeanne:

That reminds me of a pâte brisée pie we used to make as kids--very simple dough, and once you lined the pan, you'd fill it with whatever fruit you had. Haven't thought of it in years...

>83 hfglen:

And people wonder why the human species didn't hang onto the olfactory skills of other apes... :)

Abr 17, 2020, 1:55 pm

>83 hfglen: That seems quite an extravagant option for starch! I seem to remember that one of the reasons 16th century English Puritan commentators gave for their objection to the wearing of wide lace ruffs by the rich was that the starch they needed was made from flour which could have been used to feed the poor, but I suspect wheat starch was both more economical and less smelly.

Abr 17, 2020, 2:08 pm

Dry egg white should not be smelly. Probably lasts better than wheat starch, and takes less preparation.

Abr 17, 2020, 3:39 pm

>89 Sovay: One assumes they kept hens! But any halfway decent Portuguese cookbook should have a bakery section replete with examples, often fancifully named, of goodies made with a gazillion egg yolks. Try, for example, Pasteis de Nata in Cooking the Portuguese Way in South Africa, among many other sources.

>90 MarthaJeanne: Thank you. One suspects that there would have been more than a few habits to be starched "by yesterday" in the convent laundry at any one time.

Abr 17, 2020, 8:01 pm

>85 MrsLee: I've been slow on this, but I haven't forgotten about it. I was disappointed to discover that I couldn't take the lazy way out. I have many recipes in a word document, but alas, neither yellow cake nor angel food cake were among them. I had two recipes that require a yellow cake as the base, but I suspect that they mean the standard yellow cake, and not the egg yolk variety.

When I had a houseful to cook for, I was more organized. It's been just me for more than fifteen years, and I've gotten lazy.

Abr 22, 2020, 4:50 pm

>92 Lyndatrue: No worries! I'm not baking much cake right now anyway, and you notice I'm too lazy to type out my recipes here. ;)

Abr 24, 2020, 12:14 pm

made tabbouleh... as I do, constantly...

plus this is now my screensaver...

Abr 24, 2020, 1:23 pm


Abr 24, 2020, 6:43 pm

The magic of pomegranate, innit?! Nothing else glams up dishes so. The glitter of food world... :)

Jun 15, 2020, 9:26 pm

I made cheese a few weeks ago, at the end of May. I forgot to salt it, so it came out very bland, but otherwise it worked. It was actually much simpler than I expected, and didn't require anything out of the norm as far as ingredients. It was fun.

Nov 7, 2020, 7:05 pm

First time ever I saw fresh sardines for sale here... "flown from Italy", oh my. Priced ridiculously in comparison to home markets, of course, there's hardly a cheaper fish available... my mum flipped when she heard, they cost me more than a fresh tuna steak would back home. Oh well. Carbon footprint and all that.

I rolled them in a mix of chopped parsley, garlic, lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, wine, salt, pepper and just a couple tbs of grated bread crust, then seared in a grill pan. Can't compare to grilling them over live coals on a beach, but hey, it's as close as I can get...

Nov 16, 2020, 3:54 pm

Oysters today. The fish counter calls to me ever more strongly--decidedly, I am homesick.

Oh! I "lost" a cookbook! The voluptuous vegan found its way to a neighbour better placed to admire it.

Nov 29, 2020, 6:54 pm

This was sooo yummy... a branzino too large for my grill pan but turned out to perfection under max broiling. The garnish is to satisfy my surviving parent's everlasting grousing, "but where are the contorni... you eat like a barbarian..."

Dez 25, 2020, 3:24 pm

Not sure why this came out so dark... A shrimp variation on a Dalmatian dish that originally calls for scampi (but where do I find scampi worthy of the name here...)... and, variating further, I added a Greek touch--three shallots and a small red onion; and a Syrian one (substituting bulgur for bread crumbs).