omly: peacock tail feather (Default)
So I hadn't written a whole lot about it, because I was going through a lot of stuff with my grandmother's decline and subsequent death at the time, but there was lots of awesome and thoughtful stuff surrounding my birthday.

The Friday before my birthday, I took the day off and wandered the city on my own. I spent a lot of time downtown, in particular in the Boston Commons. I did some drawing of the large fountain near Park Street Station and listened to young musicians. I lay on a blanket on the grass, enjoying the weather and the movement of people. I did some knitting and wandered down Newbury Street to get some birthday yarn. (Windsor Button I miss you!) In general it was a day devoted to whimsy and art, which a thing that needs to be indulged in periodically.

Then that evening [personal profile] majes as always is a fantastic companion for that sort of culinary adventure. Our waiter was adorable and easy to communicate what we were thinking of to get suggestions. Other highlights included a particularly well balanced beet salad with goat cheese (a favorite in general but this was particularly well done) and lemon poppy seed bread with lemon sorbet, basil meringue, and sour cherries. ([personal profile] regyt , the sour cherries made me think of you!) I don't even care for meringues in general, so I was surprised that they were really good. Lemony things are a favorite anyways, but still the whole thing was outstanding. Oh and apple-pie-in-a-glass! I have no idea anymore what I ended up getting as a desert wine, but it was phenomenal. That description makes it sound cloyingly sweet, which it was not at all. There were definite qualities of apple and spices that made it reminiscent of apple pie, with just enough sweetness to smooth things out and not be considered a dry wine. 

The day of my birthday was also a planned beach outing for R's birthday. When [personal profile] majes and I arrived early to the beach it was empty, and it is my favorite part of the day on the beach anyways. The quiet with mostly just the sounds of the water was restful, and I delighted in the reflections on the water. It was good that we had arrived early though, as the beach began to fill up long before the rest of the crew showed up. [livejournal.com profile] ifuonlyknew arrived with R & T. T & J brought their kids. And G & A were there with the girls. There was a very good turn out, and I got to meet and talk at some length to several new people. (And hey if you know the username of anyone I saw that day, let me know!)

Also on my birthday proper the whole family (with the delightful Popple) went out for Thai at Sweet Ginger, which I wasn't familiar with in Somerville. Popple got the spiciest thing ever and tried to smoke out the entire restaurant. We were not to be deterred though, and opening the door helped the stressed HVAC system cope with the problem. (Love you Popple!) Not only was I appreciative of tasty Thai food, but also I appreciated everyone's consideration of the fact that I really like to financially support places in my home city. Then afterwards we headed to the movies, where we saw Monsters University with G with her girls as well. Fun!

I received thoughtful cards from [livejournal.com profile] jasra and [livejournal.com profile] ifuonlyknew.

And of course I got to go on a waterfall rappelling adventure with [livejournal.com profile] salvbard.

There was lots of amazing experiences with people I care about, AND I got to turn a prime number.
omly: peacock tail feather (Default)
Sunday lunch: beet and goat cheese arugula salad
Sunday: chicken drumsticks, rice, and farm share veggies
Monday: eggplant bolognese
Tuesday: ham steaks, colcannon, steamed carrots
Wednesday: minestrone soup
Thursday: - game -
Friday: - up to [livejournal.com profile] salvbard and [livejournal.com profile] jasra
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Sunday lunch: Hummus en Fuego, Balsamic Bruschetta
*made ahead for lunches: quinoa w/ kale
Monday: Creamy Vegan Potato Leek Soup
Tuesday: Carrot Almond Salad (with green beans instead of asparagus), Lemony Chickpea Stirfry
Wednesday: cherry tomato couscous
Thursday: game night!
Friday: Spring Pasta with summer vegetables instead :)
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
This week in our farm share we had gotten:
2 bunches arugula
2 bunches pea tendrils
2 bunches chard
2 heads romaine lettuce
2 bunches turnips
2 bunches cilantro
2 bunches baby bok choy
2 bunches carrots

I had a fabulous, but crazy full weekend. (More on that later.) As a result I did not do any meal planning for the week. Fortunately we are back into farm share season! I was totally able to put together dinner without having done any grocery shopping.

8-9 oz dried linguine
1 tbsp peanut or canola oil
1 tbsp sesame oil
1 tbsp minced ginger
2 tsp minced garlic
0.5 tsp hot red pepper flakes
6-7 small carrots, sliced
4-5 heads of baby bok choy, stems separated from leaves and both chopped into bite sized pieces
4 brown mushrooms
1 red bell pepper + 0.5 yellow bell pepper, cut into chunks
1 cup broth
2 tbsp soy sauce

Boil noodles until barely tender. Drain and keep warm. Meanwhile, heat a wok or very large heavy skillet over highest flame. Add oils, swirl the pan to coat the bottom, and add the ginger, garlic and hot pepper flakes. (Keep your face away from the steam. It is spicy!) Stir-fry for 30 seconds, then add the carrots, mushrooms and bok choy stems. Let cook for 1-2 minutes then add the bell pepper. Cook for another 1-2 minutes. Add the broth, greens and soy sauce, cover the wok, and let steam until everything is tender (~5 minutes more). Divide the noodles among 4 soup bowls. Portion the bok choy mixture over the noodles.
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Monday Tea Time: Lemon Balm Tea Cake (recipe below)
Monday BBQ: beer bratwurst, swordfish steak, grilled marinated vegetables, grilled balsamic asparagus, and honey balsamic bean salad
Tuesday: los restos
Wednesday: chickpea curry
Thursday: cream of tuna
Friday: JoCo concert! no idea what is going on!


In case you too have a lemon balm plant trying to take over the world, this is something we are trying with it:
Lemon Balm Tea Cake recipe (with optional lemon glaze) )
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Sunday: keilbasa, salad, sauteed spinach, and pasta with butter and sage sauce
Monday: sockeye salmon, steamed broccoli, roasted acorn squash with tomato sauce and goat cheese
Tuesday: (game night) chicken curry and rice
Wednesday: chili (I will likely be out, but it makes excellent leftovers and can be prepped ahead)
Thursday: red lentil soup
Friday: Grueyere sausage, spinach salad, and sweet potato

So I have both a sage plant and a lemon balm plant that are looking to TAKE OVER THE WORLD! Well or at least the raised bed they are in. Anyone have tasty suggestions of what to use them for/with? And/or would anyone like to take some off my hands?
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
It has been really nice to get back into cooking and meal planning. Last night I made roast beef, egg noodles, roasted CSA root veggies and peas. Today I made braised balsamic chicken, a white and wild rice mixture, and salad. Tomorrow will be tasty chicken & veggie coconut curry at [livejournal.com profile] jasra's house. I need more veggies still, but I don't feel like I am in a rut. And I am delighting at the challenge of using up what is in the house,.

Meal Plans

Jul. 11th, 2011 04:40 pm
omly: peacock tail feather (Default)
Sunday breakfast: breakfast barley
Sunday dinner: veggie stirfry with farmshare yellow and orange carrots, baby bok choy, and kohlrabi
Monday: veggie pasta (including csa sugar snap peas, carrots, and parsley)
Tuesday: wild rice with green lentils, sesame green beans
Wednesday: garlic shrimp and forbidden rice with mushroom and tarragon (with scallion and potato patties for Roger?)
Thursday: a variation of french green lentil & couscous salad with garden salad

Meal Plans

Jul. 6th, 2011 10:21 am
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
This past week's farm share: 2 bunches golden beets, 2 bunches yellow carrot, 2 bunches scallion, 2 heads romaine lettuce, 2 heads cabbage, 2 bunches kale, 2 bunches turnip and 1 pound sugar snap peas

Thursday Breakfast: carrot muffins
Thursday Dinner: pasta with sugar snap peas, mushrooms, yellow & orange carrots, kohlrabi and fresh herbs
Friday Breakfast: cream of wheat
Friday Dinner: grilled venison steaks, roasted yellow beets and carrots with sage, and garden salad
Sunday: leftovers!
Monday: 4th of July cookout!
Tuesday: sandwiches & garden salad
Wed Lunch: Red Lentil Soup
Wednesday: oil and vinegar based pasta salad, kidney bean and corn salad
Thursday: quinoa tabbouleh, grilled meats & veggies, salad and stewed rhubarb with vanilla icecream

Meal Plans

May. 1st, 2011 12:03 pm
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Sunday: jambalaya
Monday: pot roast
Tuesday: Tomato roasted red pepper w/basil and tortellini soup
Wednesday: chicken with saffron rice
Thursday: cottage pie
Friday: sesame noodles
Saturday: corn chowder
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Sunday - a Meyer lemon & basil variation of this lemon spaghetti recipe
Monday - [livejournal.com profile] cintyber used the last of the wedding leftovers with mac & cheese
Tuesday - blts
Wednesday - vegetarian red beans & rice with plantains & corn bread
Thursday - minestrone soup
Friday - cheesy pasta bake
Saturday - lentil soup?

It is that time of year where I start really thinking about cleaning out the fridge and freezer. The freezer I am emptying out more on general principle, but I like to completely empty and bleach down the fridge at least twice a year.

Plus I have been really enjoying working from what is in the pantry and coming up with meal plans buying a minimum of ingredients. And as an added bonus I find we eat more creative meals and less meat when I step out of autopilot, both of which are important to me.

What sort of things can you generally make out off your pantry? What are your pantry staples?

Meal Plans

Feb. 27th, 2011 07:48 pm
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Saturday: chicken and wild rice soup (mmm having our own canned stock makes all the difference)
Sunday: barbecue pulled pork, mashed potatoes, corn and pumpkin bread
Monday: steak salad
Tuesday: lettuce wraps
Wednesday: white fish, meyer lemon green beans, rice pilaf
Thursday: baked macaroni and cheese
Friday: home made pizza
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Saturday (today): vegetarian yakisoba
Sunday: pizza
Monday: chicken stirfry
Tuesday: asian leftovers (drunken noodle, thai basil rice, yakisoba, and chinese take-out)
Wednesday: mac n' cheese
Thursday: [livejournal.com profile] cintyber's baked basil chicken with some sort of yummy side
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Saturday morning: cinnamon rolls with a cream cheese frosting & sticky rolls with a toasted pecan glaze
Sunday: beef & barley soup
Monday: Hungarian goulash & sauteed brussel sprouts tossed with parmesan
Tuesday: steelhead, meyer lemon risotto & white asparagus

Hmmm I wonder what other tasty things we could think up to make this week.
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Last week I made a tasty Butternut squash soup (altered to make it [livejournal.com profile] cintyber friendly and to use parsnip since I still had a few from the CSA)

Sunday I made pork with a mushroom, paprika and sour cream sauce to serve over egg noodles. Normally we have been avoiding meals like that, but since C was out with [livejournal.com profile] ifuonlyknew doing some shopping it was a good chance to revisit this one.

Yesterday there was an iron rich meal of marinated tip steak with mushroom sauce (roughly inspired by this recipe but you know how I am about doing my own thing), "dirty" mashed potatoes, sauteed spinach and salad. (Yay [livejournal.com profile] crazybone it was nice to have you spontaneously over to have dinner with us.)

Today my house smells amazing as I have been slow baking homemade boston baked beans. I know most people think of these as a summer/BBQ thing, but I love them in the winter. Plus it makes me really happy to make some that [livejournal.com profile] cintyber can eat too.

Tomorrow I think will be pizza, but soon after will have to be yakisoba. It has been far too long since I made that.
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
We are keeping it a lot simpler this year. Nothing too interesting, but the only major place we are "cheating" with is lunch and the pie crust.

Breakfast:
monkey bread (chosen for [livejournal.com profile] cintyber since she had never had) & tea

Lunch:
antipasto/cheese & cracker platter

Dinner:
simple organic roasted turkey
turkey gravy
red bliss mashed potatoes
(CSA) butternut squash
(CSA) savory acorn squash with tomato and goat cheese
green bean almondine
[livejournal.com profile] cintyber's apple cider cranberry sauce
fresh dinner rolls
mead sparkling apple cider from the wedding reception

Dessert:
pumpkin pie (yay hopefully leftovers for breakfast tomorrow)
cherry pie (for [livejournal.com profile] salvbard) (cherries in freezer are MIA)
apple pie

Lamb Stew

Nov. 10th, 2010 11:53 am
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Recently I visited the farmer's market in Davis square and discovered this cute little local lamb vendor. The sell everything from wool to whole lambs, but I just picked up some stock bones and stew meat to try them out. Yesterday I made lamb stock in the afternoon to use in a variation of moroccan lamb stew. I had butternut squash left from the CSA, but didn't feel up to processing it. So I used CSA carrots instead. (And obviously no onions or shallots were involved, and the rest of the spices were adapted accordingly.) Reactions were fairly positive from those who had it, but with many of us in the household not feeling well that wasn't everyone. Given that I initially bought the lamb with [livejournal.com profile] cintyber in mind, I was a little sad that she wasn't feeling well enough to really have the stew, but at least there was stock in the house that she could actually have.
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Week 20: 2 bunches beets, 2 bunches carrots, 2 bunches turnips, 2 bunches parsnips, 2 pounds green tomatoes, 2 butternut squash, 2 sugar pumpkins and 2 blue Hubbard squashes

Week 19: 2 bunches swiss chard, 2 bunches carrots, 2 bunches mizuna, 2 bunches beets, 2 bunches radish, 2 bunches parsnips, 2 pounds peppers, 2 (giant) butternut squash and 2 delicata squash

Week 18: 2 bunches arugula, 2 bunches carrots, 2 bunches tatsoi, 2 bunches broccoli, 2 bunches red russian kale, 2 pounds kentucky wonder beans, 2 pounds zucchini, 2 (giant) butternut squash, 2 acorn squash and 6 green peppers

As you can tell, we have been getting lots of squash. It doesn't use a lot, but an interesting way to use some of the leftovers was roasted butternut squash pancakes. We added pecans for a little texture, which I think improved them.

Soup!

Jul. 21st, 2010 05:18 pm
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Dinner tonight of beef barley soup made from scratch (all the way from the stock) is made possible by CSA potatoes, kohlrabi, carrots, green beans and parsley (basically everything but the beef and the barley). Yum!

Yesterday's vegetable noodle soup had CSA squash, green beans, carrots, cauliflower, potato, kohlrabi, and parsley.
omly: peacock tail feather (squash)
Last night I made a variation of this summer squash gratin recipe where I added some thinly sliced kohlrabi to the potatoes (both of which I blanched before tossing with the squash to shorten baking time) and used sharp cheddar cheese (because it was what I had on hand). Yummy! The squash, potatoes and kohlrabi were all farmshare items. Served with a cucumber tomato salad (only the cucumbers were farmshare), this was a fairly CSA friendly meal.

Today, I need to make some carrot and butternut squash soup, which I will base on this carrot soup recipe. Umm yeah, I could follow directions, but I will leave that for the lab... (I also am interested in spinach and zucchini soup, but I will wait to see if we get any from the farmshare.)

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