Thursday, October 31, 2013

Meal No. 846: Patty Melts

Man-o-man, I'm not being all that creative even though I'm home all this week. Home, but working locally each day. That eats into my leisurely time to plan and shop and prepare a good supper. So tonight had to be pretty easy again, and I put a pound of ground beef in the fridge into play and made patty melts. It's hard to beat this meal, but it sure lacks sexiness on a food-oriented blog.

Classic Burger Sauce
from Cook's Illustrated, July-August 2008, p. 11.
4 T mayonnaise
2 T ketchup
1 tsp sweet pickle relish
1 tsp sugar
1 tsp white vinegar
1/2 tsp ground black pepper
Whisk all ingredients together in a small bowl.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Meal No. 844: Not So Cajun Chicken

Thinking about the first meal in the new kitchen, as mentioned in a recent blog post, got me hankering for a repeat of it. This here is one of the Roediger House's most special meals: Not So Cajun Chicken.

Links To Recipe [in PDF]:

Not So Cajun Chicken (another version can be found here)

Monday, October 28, 2013

RoHo Halloween Party 2013

Last night's annual Halloween shindig at the Roediger House was another great time with friends old and new. And it was a reasonably rollicking one, running just past 4:30 am this morning. I wish I'd slept in longer.

I also wish I'd done a better job of taking pictures. This year's party seemed to draw people to congregate was a great evening to be out on that upstairs porch, looking out at the city skyline. I tried to keep the table filled with reasonable foodstuffs, in the meantime.

I did not manage to snap photos of all the evening's edibles, and I definitely couldn't get a picture of the 3:30 am warm bacon dip that I was commanded to make...and that was then eagerly descended upon.

Rotel Cups

Southwestern Dip

Fudge with Walnuts

Nutless Fudge

Artichoke dip, recipe courtesy of LeAnne Forney

Sylvia brought a fantastic tres leche cake.

This is all that I'll show you of my own costume:

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Meal No. 843: Sage-Crusted Pork Loin

As these meals are counted (beginning with the first one prepared in the new kitchen I added on in 2009), it's not been that long since I made this very same dish: just five or six meals ago. Of course, I've been on the road a little bit in the meantime. I also have displayed a tendency to return quickly to a recipe when it has made me very happy.

Last night, the sage-crusted pork loin was still good, but I fear my cut of meat was not as solid as a week or so ago when I last made this. It didn't keep me from getting a belly full at supper, though.

"Sage-Crusted Pork Roast with Roasted Vegetables," in Cuisine at Home, October 2009, Issue 77, p. 38-39.

Saturday, October 26, 2013

First Fire of Fall 2013

This morning was stupidly cold and I was up early. It was a perfect time to build a fire and to get the winter wood-burning season off to the right start.

I do love a fire.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Meal No. 842: Shrimp with Goat Cheese Grits & Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

This fantastic recipe, courtesy of my sister Allison in Indiana, and drawn from the Tupelo Honey Cafe cookbook she gave me, was yet again awesome.

The shrimp and roasted red pepper sauce are fantastic, prepared as directed from the THC cookbook. But it also helps that the Luquire stone ground grits are pretty amazing too. I saved out a portion of them to have as a snack the following day.

"Shrimp and Goat Cheese Grits with Roasted Red Pepper Sauce," in Tupelo Honey Cafe: Spirited Recipes from Asheville's New South Kitchen, by Elizabeth Sims with Chef Brian Sonoskus. Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC (2011), p. 100-101, 179.

Luquire Family Stone Ground Grits, milled in Greenwood, SC, which is where my father was when he died in 1981, interestingly enough.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

Meal No. 841: Angel Hair with Alfredo Sauce

Drove in from Frederick County, Virginia, and whipped up some pasta with alfredo. It wasn't very good tonight.

"Fettucine Alfredo," from The Joy of Cooking by Irma S. Rombauer, Marion Rombauer Becker, and Ethan Becker. New York: Scribner (2006), p. 327.

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

First Attempt: Rainbow Cake

I guess in the scheme of things, I don't make all that many layer cakes. But I followed a link that followed a link that followed some other link and I got very, very intrigued with the Whisk Kid's approach to making this very colorful rainbow cake. Not only do I not make all that many layer cakes, I've also done very little with food coloring, with the exception of a few attempts at red velvet cakes (and one red velvet cheesecake). I got a hankering to rise to the challenge.

Part of what's supposed to be cool about this cake is that it looks so ordinary when you walk into a party with it:

But then you cut into it, and here's what you get:

It's a pretty moist and tasty cake, and I chose to go with a lemon flavored Swiss buttercream frosting on it.

I didn't get the colors exactly right for what the instructions called for, but at least I was finally able to use my special order of unicorn tears.

"Say It With Cake: Super Epic Rainbow Cake," from the Whisk Kid blog.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Meal No. 840: Lamb Meat Loaf

Before last night's movie night, the plan was for a contingent from 6th & Vine to be here for a bit of supper. Sickness and headaches wiped out half the crew but that's all right: these ain't shabby leftovers to have on hand.

The meal: a return to that amazing recipe from the Tupelo Honey Cafe in Asheville for lamb meat loaf. You can't beat this one, folks. And the smashed sweet potatoes (also a Tupelo Honey Cafe recipe) were yet again just about perfect. Throw in a mess of green beans and you've got yourself a fine dinner.

"Lamb and Multi-Mushroom Meat Loaf" (p. 150) and "Smashed Sweet Potatoes" (p. 128), in Tupelo Honey Cafe: Spirited Recipes from Asheville's New South Kitchen, by Elizabeth Sims with Chef Brian Sonoskus. Kansas City: Andrews McMeel Publishing, LLC, 2011.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Movie Night 2013, No. 4: House of Dark Shadows

The final movie night event at the Roediger House for 2013: House of Dark Shadows

Good Lord, this movie is horrible. Which is why this evening's crowd that gathered in the chill October air seemed to enjoy it so much: it was fun to watch a film that never meant to be campy when it was made back in 1970, and that makes it pretty awesome for a fall movie night.

It didn't get as cold as the 2009 showing of The Shining, when temps at the end of the movie were at 43F (with a Real-Feel of 38F!). But it was still down to just shy of the upper 40s when things wrapped up tonight. What cracks me up is that the night turned into another great impromptu upstairs porch party, where we were all bundled up but enjoying the great view of a rising nearly-full moon over the city skyline (sort of like this).

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Meal No. 839: Asian Pork Tenderloin

I have a notebook with recipe clippings in it, having thought from time to time that I should pare down all these recipe magazines that I have coming into the house and just save what looks good. One of those clippings is for Asian Pork Tenderloin, thanks to Cuisine at Home.

This is a recipe I'd only made once before, and on that previous occasion, the big turn-off was the Chinese five-spice powder that it calls for. That spice mix has two or three flavors in it that are just not my thing.

But I still had a generally favorable impression of the dish, recognizing that I might have to tinker with it if I gave it another go. That was this evening's fare, and the results were pretty darned good. I can't tell you exactly what I did to replace the spice combo but on this occasion, it worked.

"Asian Pork Tenderloin," from Cuisine at Home, December 2006, Issue 60, p. 36. You can snag the recipe if you're willing to read through the comments on the Cuisine at Home online forum page for this dish.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Meal No. 838: Blackened Grilled Tuna

I have a tendency to return quickly to a well-received recipe, maybe because it's fresh on my mind, or maybe because the featured item is still on a good sale at the grocery store. Whichever is the explanation this evening, I'm already serving up a grilled tuna steak along with risotto, following the four-hour drive home from Shenandoah County this afternoon. I don't think the tuna was as good as the one from this past Sunday, but the meal still hit the spot.

Thyme, Marjoram, and Parmesan Risotto, based loosely on Emeril Lagasse's directions found in "Shrimp and Asparagus Risotto Casserole."

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Brand-New Cookie Recipes

As the summer wrapped up and we moved into fall, I got the urge to pull out some saved but untried cookie recipes. These first runs were greeted reasonably well by those I pawned them off on.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies

White Chocolate Snickerdoodle Pudding Cookies

Butterscotch Macadamia Nut Oatmeal Cookies

"Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies," from King Arthur Flour online.

"White Chocolate Snickerdoodle Pudding Cookies," from Something Swanky Desserts and Designs.

"Butterscotch Macadamia Nut Cookies," from King Arthur Flour online.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Vanilla-Glazed Cinnamon Biscuits

I had some cinnamon filling left over after making struessel to top off a recent batch of French toast cupcakes, and I always need to practice my biscuit making. I figured today I'd give this the ol' college try, and by college try, I mean the idea came from my college roommate Jimmy Randolph, who is himself a master biscuit maker.

I, however, am not.

The result had interesting but not compelling flavors and pretty much the whole batch (except for the sample slice) got tossed into the garbage. C'est la vie!

"Fluffy Biscuits," from Cook's Illustrated, May 1993, accessed online.

"Simplest Vanilla Glaze," by Mark and Michael Klebeck with Jess Thomson. In Top Pot Hand-Forged Doughnuts: Secrets and Recipes for the Home Baker. San Francisco: Chronicle Books (2011), p. 132.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Meal No. 837: Sage-Crusted Pork Roast


How come I don't think to whip up a meal like this more often? Tender, succulent, perfectly seasoned center cut pork roast, roasted vegetables, and some basic canned peas. This was just a l'il ol' weeknight meal and it was almost like there was a special occasion at the Roediger House.

"Sage-Crusted Pork Roast with Roasted Vegetables," in Cuisine at Home, October 2009, Issue 77, p. 38-39.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Meal No. 836: Pit Pot Roast

It's been too long since I fired up the kamado grill. Anticipating a gathering here on this fine Monday evening, I grabbed a good-sized chuck roast, rubbed it down with Wild Willy's Number One-derful Rub last night, and got it onto the smoker just before noon today. By late afternoon, when I added tomatoes and an onion-and-beer mop to it, it was looking and smelling fantastic. That's also when the sun finally came out after about a week's absence.

The Cinderella glaze and sauce that went with it this evening was made previously for another kamado meal. I brought it out of the freezer and heated it up to go with it. Some seasoned lima beans and my friend Cindy's recipe for cheddar potato slices were a symphony of overindulgence.

Kamado Meal #21

"Pit Pot Roast" (p. 128-129) and "Cinderella Glaze and Sauce" (p. 124-125). In Smoke & Spice, by Cheryl and Bill Jamison. Boston: The Harvard Common Press, 2003.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Meal No. 835: Coriander & Ginger-Crusted Grilled Tuna Steaks

I really liked this recipe when I tried it the first time but it's taken a while to get back to it. I especially like the avocado-wasabi-ginger sauce that goes with it, although it turned out this time a little runny. The risotto was especially good tonight.

"Coriander & Ginger-Crusted Tuna," in Cuisine at Home, Issue 93, June 2012, p. 14-15.

Thyme, Marjoram, and Parmesan Risotto, based loosely on Emeril Lagasse's directions found in "Shrimp and Asparagus Risotto Casserole."

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Meal No. 834: Spice-Rubbed Roasted Salmon

My good friend and fellow Project CRISS Master Trainer Peggy Clark very thoughtfully gave me some Penzy's spices when I joined her back in June for a training she was doing in Florida. This evening's roasted salmon fillet was topped with one of those spice combos and cooked up to perfection. I had some brown rice and broccoli florets with it, along with some chilled rosemary dijon cream sauce (the spotty stuff that almost blends in with the right side of the plate in the photo above).

Guidance for the Chilled Rosemary Dijon Cream Sauce was found in the recipe for "Poached Salmon," in The Ultimate Southern Living Cookbook, compiled and edited by Julie Fisher Gunter. Birmingham, AL: Oxmoor House (1999), p. 216.

Friday, October 11, 2013

Meal No. 833: Hamburger Supreme

"Hamburger Supreme," from the late Mrs. John T. (Glynn) Johnson of Buies Creek, North Carolina, via Janice Jones Bodenhamer.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

October Day Lilies

As the remnants of Tropical Storm Karen passed over this slice of North Carolina heaven, it finally began to feel more like fall. The weekend leading up to this rainy weather event held onto its summerishness and Saturday felt downright hot, with temps about 12 degrees above normal.

After a decade in the Roediger House, and finding each summer that the established day lilies I inherited with the house had a short mid-summer blooming spell, I must tell you how pleased I am at getting more out of the new ones that I have planted. I was also surprised that some of them popped out with some fresh fall blooms, long after I thought they were done showing off for the year.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

A Looky at the Cookies (of late)

Red Velvet Cookies for the September Gallery Hop
Delurk Gallery and Ember Gallery
Cap'n Crunch Cookies
(because the visiting Sheryl insisted)

Cap'n Crunch Cookies

Cap'n Crunch Cookies

"Red Velvet Cookies," in Cuisine at Home, September/October 2013, p. 46.

"Cap'n Crunch Cookies," found online at The Capitol Baker, with credit going to The Sugar Plum Blog for inspiration and the source of the adapted recipe.