Saturday, February 16, 2013

Menu Week of Feb 10

Su: pizza w/ Italian sausage & roasted red peppers
M: pasta w/ marinara sauce
T: roasted sweet potatoes & sauteed kale
W: out
R: V-Day dinner at Blackbird
F: gnocchi w/ sage butter sauce; salad

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Leftovers! Menu, Week of Jan 27

Su: left-over lemony lentil soup; bread
M: pasta with red sauce (made Sunday)
T: Beef Rogan Josh; Naan (made by frying peach-sized lumps of bread dough in ghee, 2-3 min per side)
W: Mexican Corn Chowder
R: omelet with left-over wild-mushroom ravioli filling (...still need to write up the original recipe)
F & Sa: out

Monday, February 4, 2013

Esther Ann's Beef Stew

Some of my earliest food memories are of eating this stew at my grandmother's house, and it was one of the first meat dishes I made on my own. Today there are a number of ways I could fancy it up, but it's too precious of a memory for that. For those without fond childhood memories to preserve, you might try switching in your favorite stew spices (marjoram, perhaps?) and browning the beef before starting the stew.

Esther Ann's Beef Stew

  • 2 lbs stew meat (Grandma uses top round), cut into large chunks, perhaps 2-3"
  • 3 celery stalks, cut into 2" segments
  • 2 medium onions, cut in lengths
  • 4 carrots, cut into 4 pieces 
  • 1 C tomato juice
  • 1/3 C quick-cooking tapioca
  • 1 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 Tbsp dried basil
  • 1/2 tsp pepper
  • 2 medium potatoes, cut into large chunks
Preheat oven to 300F.

Combine beef, celery, onions, and carrots in casserole dish. In a small bowl, combine tomato juice, tapioca, and seasonings. Pour over meat and veggies, stirring to cover.

Cover and bake for about 2 1/2 hours. Remove the cover and add the potatoes. Bake for another hour, uncovered, or until potatoes are very soft.

Can also be made in the crockpot by combining all ingredients and cooking on low for 8 hours.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Lemon Lentil Soup

This is another recipe from the Corinna Chapman series by Kerry Greenwood. (OMG - while I was looking up the series link, I came across a link to a mini-cookbook for them! Cannot wait to try. Ahem. Anyway...) I'm enjoying the series, but I'm also having a great time with the recipes Greenwood includes. This soup was no exception - easy to make, and very tasty. I did make a few minimal changes, because I can't seem to resist doing that, but it hews pretty close to the original.

Lemon Lentil Soup
adapted from Devil's Food by Kerry Greenwood

  • 2 cups brown lentils
  • olive oil
  • 2 medium–large onions, peeled and chopped
  • bunch of silverbeet (I learned a new word from this recipe: silverbeet is also known as chard), trimmed and finely sliced.
  • juice of 2 large lemons
  • ~ 2 C vegetable stock
  • salt and whole black peppercorns

Soak the lentils overnight or, if time presses or you forgot, cover with cold water and bring to the boil, cover and turn off the heat and leave for an hour. Drain, cover with fresh water (this reduces the flatulence quotient), bring to a boil in a soup pot and simmer until tender (which won’t be long, don’t overcook them) — maybe five minutes. Keep tasting.

Meanwhile, cover the base of a heavy sauce pan with olive oil. When hot, throw in the onions, stir, and cook until golden.

When the onions are ready, throw in the chard, turn the heat to high, and mix the onions and chard together. Cover tightly, turn the heat down to medium, and cook until the stems are tender. Add the lentils and enough stock to come barely to the top of the mixture. Add the lemon juice and about 20 peppercorns, coarsely cracked. Add salt to taste and simmer for about 15 minutes.