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RandaLea

I love Trader Joes

I love the Thai Green Curry Sauce. Simmer 6 skinless chicken thighs in the sauce and make some basmati rice. Great flavor!

Mustard-Roasted Fish

This is one of our favorite ways to serve fish. Great for entertaining since you can prep it ahead of time and serve right out of the oven. Another great one from Ina.

Not just a slump--a string of cooking failures!

Wow, you are really distracted. Are you in love?

New Le Creuset, now what to do with it...

While I totally second the bread suggestion, I would make your favorite braise. Pot roast, lamb shanks, soups and stews. I just look at my Le Creuset dutch oven and I want to start cooking. You will love these!

Cook the Book: 'At Elizabeth David's Table'

I hate to sound pedestrian, but I love Ina Garten's approach that preparing good food for people you love is the cook's greatest joy.

The Crisper Whisperer: Winter Crudités with Marcella Hazan's Bagna Cauda

I grew up eating Bagna Cauda with my dad's Italian family, but had never made it for my family until this recipe prompted me. They were a little skeptical--anchovies?? But they lapped it up with broccoli and cabbage. We also use a slice of bread to catch the drips and mop the corners of the pan. Now my college-age kids ask for it!

Cook the Book: 'Around My French Table'

The one I'll be on next week to Seattle. All hotels, flights, etc are paid for with various points so told DH that I intend to eat VERY well!

Cook the Book: 'The Book of Tapas'

I was surprised to see the sauteed spinach with raisins, as that was my go-to dish at my favorite tapas place, La Bodega in Kansas City.

What would you do with Pesto?

I totally second the pizza idea. Stir it into some mayo for a great sandwich spread or dip for veggies. Stir it into hot pasta with a little pasta water and add broccoli or asparagus with some chicken or shrimp--which would be great hot or cold. Add to about any soup. It also freezes beautifully.

Money Saving Tips On Food

I have to second the notion of baking your own bread. It is not difficult or mysterious. Two books to check out at your local library are "Artisan Bread in Five Minutes a Day" and "Kneadlessly Simple." The techniques work for busy people.

Also, seasoning and flavors become important when you're working with "blank canvas" foods like beans and poultry. Think smoked paprika, garlic, ginger. Caramelize a pan of onions and eat them with everything.

Aioli! - What now?

Yes, I did. It was going well at first, then about half way through it broke. I think I added too much oil at once. I started with another yolk and whisked in the broken sauce. It worked beautifully after that. It was reallly thick and basically formed a ball in the bowl. I added a few drops of water which thinned it out and lightened the color a bit.

Sounds like I need to try it on a potato salad. I have a some baby reds on hand.

Aioli! - What now?

french tart - It was David's post that inspired me!

Serious Efforts: Homemade Ice Cream (including Lactose-free)

We are enjoying the Buttermilk Ice Cream recipe posted by Deb at Smitten Kitchen. It calls for 12 egg yolks, but on her advice I cut that back to 6 or 7. Still very rich and delicious with that slight tang from the buttermilk. Heaven with summer fruit. I don't think I'll be able to face store-brand vanilla again!

Aioli! - What now?

Made my first batch of aioli last night. We tucked it into pitas with grilled veggies--Yum! I'd love your ideas on what I can do with the rest of it.

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