Saturday, September 23, 2006

Ode to Dave's at Willy World
Oh Dave, your food was so good
It was excellent to have a such a cozy place in our hood.
Because you've closed down
I write this with a frown
we are sad to see you go
cause we so wanted you to grow
What a dream
Paying one price for salad bar, entree and ice cream
But that kind of quirk
just didn't work
If it were our place
we would've kept pace
putting the cars in front and the deck out back
It can be ours if the price is right
try as we might
Does the big screen TV come with the deal?
Come on, Open for one last meal!
We never got our chance to say "so long"
Goodbye to Dave's at Willy World
Sniff :-(
MMM, The other night we had some friends over and I made this spiced chicken and lentil dish that turned out to be so tasty. It was a takeoff on a recipe I found for Moroccan chicken, but since I didn't have some of the ingredients and I had others I thought might work, I changed it round.
The recipe relies on the tang of vinegar to really make the lentils flavorful.

I washed and trimmed four large boneless, skinless, breasts and then cut them into strips that I marinated in oil, garlic, 2 tablespoons chili powder, corriander, and salt and pepper. Refrigerate for several hours.

I cooked a pound of organic green lentils in turkey broth (found them in the new bulk section at Hannaford's) until tender and then transferred them to a bowl and dressed them with 1/2 cup olive oil, 1/4 cup red wine vinegar, 1 tablespoon chili powder, and a sprinkling of corriander, salt and pepper to taste all wisked together (you can add some cumin too, but I didn't have any) Set bowl aside.

Saute about 1/2 an onion over medium heat until translucent and soft and add the chicken, letting it get good and colorful. Cover and cook for 2 minutes and then if you want add more spices and some chopped dried apricots and turn to coat and cook another few minutes until chicken is just cooked through and tender. Take off heat and let sit for a few minutes while you get the lentils ready to assemble the dish.

Mound lentils in the center of a large platter and then add chicken around the outside of the platter. Set in the center of the table with serving spoons and let everyone help themselves. Serve with sauteed vegetables (I did squash, zucchini, colored peppers, and fresh tomatos sprinkled with garlic and oregano).


Tuesday, September 19, 2006

The YMCA pig roast was on Saturday, and though I couldn't go, I told them I would make some pies...five pies to be exact.....What could be easier than making a few pies for a dinner? Well, the darn task took me all day. As Greg said, "if you charge your hourly rate, you just gave $1000 to the Y!" .....grumble grumble...I guess that I should have cheated and bought the pie crusts. What you see in the photos is three of the five, I made two apple with oatmeal brown sugar crusts, two peach caramel lattice pies and one open-faced wild blueberry. I want to make the peach caramel again so that I can try it and may do it for tomorrow night's dinner. After tossing the peeled and sliced peaches with sugar, cinnamon and cardamom, you let the mixture sit and sweat juices for 30 minutes while you make caramel sauce. To the caramel, you add cornstarch dissolved in water, whipping cream, and then the juices from the peaches. Pour back over the peaches and then put into the partially baked shell. Lattice the top and bake for 45 minutes or so, tenting the top with foil so that it doesn't burn.

Hope the folks at the Y liked em!

I made a disasterous dessert for a friend's birthday party. Another friend called and said that she was making a Mexican fiesta night dinner and I said "Let me make a Mexican cheesecake" It was my first time cooking with gelatin, and it will be the last too. The cake tasted fine, it was just the texture that got me. The gelatin didn't distribute evenly and so there were what felt like big balls of gelatin in every bite. I thought, well it could just be me, but when someone said "this is delicious! Whats in it besides gelatin?," I knew I was in trouble.

Oh well, what doesn't kill you makes you stronger, right?