Dinner

Pasta Sausage and Cherry Tomatoes

This morning is vastly different from last Sunday around here. Last weekend we hosted my son and daughter-n-laws wedding reception that we had to postponed from last year. The weather was excellent for the majority of the party, the rain came later which we were all grateful for. There were twelve of us staying over and fourteen plus two dogs for breakfast.

At the moment it is me and the dog. I am glad I picked the last of the produce from the garden as this morning was the first frost of the season. I picked a dozen or so green peppers, too many jalapenos and a bunch of cherry tomatoes.  My kitchen is clean, the dish washer running, the beds are stripped and in the washer and I have hung out the first load of laundry on the clothes line – ahhhhhh. Don’t get me wrong I loved having everyone here but I also love some peace and quiet.

If you are looking for a quick come together meal this is it. It was fast with very few ingredients and the flavor was banging. You do need to make sure to really brown the sausage in order to get the most flavor for the finished product.

Pasta Sausage and Cherry Tomatoes

dclarkabal
a quick delicious meal for you and the family

Ingredients
  

  • 1 pound Pasta orecchiette or I had some specialty lasagna bites
  • 5 links sweet Italian sausage sliced into bite size pieces. casing removed
  • 3 tablespoon Olive Oil
  • cherry tomatoes sliced in half
  • ¼ cup white wine
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper a little more or less according to your tastes
  • 4 slices provolone chopped into small pieces

Instructions
 

  • Cook the pasta to al dente according to the package directions. Drain and reserve a cup of the salted pasta water.
  • In a large skillet heat to medium high heat, add a little olive oil and the pieces of sausage and cook till browned on all sides. Transfer to a plate and set aside.
  • In the same skillet add a little more oil if needed, along with the tomatoes and crushed red pepper. press the tomatoes and cook until they softened about 4 minutes. Add about ¼ cup or more of the white wine and let it reduce for about 2-3 minutes. Add some of the reserved pasta water. Season with salt and cook over moderate heat, scraping up all the browned bits and crushing the tomatoes, until the liquid is reduced by half.
  • Add the pasta to the skillet along with the sausage and cook for another 2-3 minutes stirring until everything is combined. Remove from the heat and add the cheese stir to combined. Transfer to bowls and serve right away.
  • side note my husband really liked the leftovers too.

 

Sausages & Lentils with Herb Relish

The herb relish in this recipe is divine. My husband wanted to stock pile it. He loved it so much that he felt it could go on anything. I don’t know if he was being silly or actually serious until he went to get a Honey Nut Cheerio and dipped it in it. No surprise; it didn’t work. I am shaking my head as I writing this.  Needless to say we had leftover sausage and my daughter had to make 2 more batches of it. Yes my husband is one of those scoops instead of dips if you get my meaning.

I also want to point out that my daughter has introduced many different options as far as starch goes. We are a meat and potato kind of family. Most of my meals consist of a meat, starch and a vegetable.  Mostly a potato in some form, or a rice. Now we have Lentils and Farro as options.  Farro being the most recent one and a huge hit.

Sausages and Lentils with an Herb relish

dclarkabal
a great flavor dish that comes together pretty quickly and all in one pan
Course dinner
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients
  

Sausage and Lentils

  • Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 6-8 sausage links
  • 1 onion finely chopped
  • ½ stalk celery finely chopped
  • 1 medium carrot peeled and finely chopped
  • ¼ pound pancetta
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • cups dry white wine
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 2⅓ cups lentils
  • 2 bay leaves
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Relish

  • 4 cups soft herbs leaves such as parsley, basil, mint, chives or a mix of what you have on hand
  • Tablespoons capers drained and rinsed
  • 2 cloves garlic minced
  • ½ teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 7 Tablespoon extra virgin olive oil

Instructions
 

Sausage and Lentils

  • Heat the olive oil in a sauté that can go into the oven and has a lid. Brown the sausages all over. they do not need to cook through just brown for now; remove and set aside. Add the onions, celery, carrot and the pancetta to the pan and sauté until the pancetta is browned. In a measuring cup; mix the stock and wine.
  • Add the garlic and lentils to the pan along with the bay leaves and toss with the vegetables. Add the 2¼ ups of the stock and wine mixture and bring to a boil, season with salt and pepper and add the sausages back to the pan. Transfer to the oven.
  • Cook uncovered for 15 minutes, stir and add the rest of the stock mixture, cover and bake for 25-30 minutes. The lentils should be tender and the liquid mostly absorbed. Taste for seasoning adjust if needed.

Relish

  • either chop the herbs and capers finely or mix them with the other ingredients in a food processor and whip them together. Taste for seasoning.

recipe adapted from: From the Oven to the Table 

Gnocchi in a Tomato Broth


Who knew my daughter would try making gnocchi before I did. It has been on my to do list for a long time now. But she did, she made it the other night with potatoes from our garden as well as using up some of the last cherry tomatoes from the garden sitting on the counter.

She along with many others believed, including myself that making gnocchi was difficult. So much so that she was nervous that we would have to order out dinner just in case it tasted terrible. It did not, and we all loved this whole dish. It was much easier than she expected; which is why she was so nervous. The tomato broth has a whole lot of flavor and they complimented the soft and pillowy gnocchi wonderfully.

She found this recipe in a the Smitten Kitchen cookbook and since it made so many extra gnocchi we will be having this again very soon, we froze them individually and stored them in a ziploc bag for future use.


The broth has SO much flavor and is so light, I am surprised we have never made it before. When I make soups it is almost always with chicken broth. But I really liked this and might have to rethink using this in some fall soups, since it is almost soup season. OK technically I have already made soup. We have cold nights here in NH now.

Gnocchi in a Tomato Broth

dclarkabal
a light and flavorful dish

Ingredients
  

tomato broth

  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium carrot chopped
  • 1 medium stalk celery chopped
  • 1 small yellow onion chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic peeled and smashed
  • ½ cup white wine
  • 1 28 ounce whole or chopped tomatoes with the juice
  • small handful of fresh basil leaves plus more for garnish
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • Kosher salt and black pepper to taste

gnocchi

  • 2 pounds Russet potatoes roughly 3-4 potatoes
  • 1 large egg lightly beaten
  • 1 teaspoon table salt
  • 1¼-1½ cups all purpose flour plus more for dusting surface
  • freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano for serving

Instructions
 

Potatoes

  • Preheat oven to 400°F. Bake potatoes for 45 minutes to 1 hour. depends on the size of your potatoes, until a thin knife can easily pierce though them.

tomato broth

  • Heat oil in a heavy bottomed pot over medium-high heat. Once hot add the carrot, celery, onion and cook together for 5 minutes. If they start to brown lower the heat to medium. Add the garlic and cook for 1 minute. Pour the wine in to deglaze the pan; scrapping up any bits from the bottom of the pan. Cooking the wine until reduced by half. Stir in the tomatoes, mashing them a bit with a spoon if whole. add the basil and stock and simmer until the tomato broth thickens slightly, about 45 minutes. Strain out the vegetables in a fine-mesh colander, and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

gnocchi

  • Let the potatoes cool for 10 minutes after baking them. peel them and run the potatoes through a potato rice, or grate them on the large holes of a box grater. cool them to lukewarm, another 10 minutes. Add the egg and salt, mix to combine. Add ½ cup of the flour, and see if this is enough to form the dough, add another ½ cup of flour and mix again. Add ¼ cup flour and see if this is enough to form a dough that doesn't easily stick to your hands. If not add the last ¼ cup of flour, a tablespoon at a time, until the dough is a good consistency - soft and a little sticky, but able to holds it shape enough to be rolled into a rope. Knead the dough together briefly on the counter - just for a minute.
  • Divide the dough into quarters. Roll each piece into a long rope, about ¾ inch thick. Cut each rope into ¾-inch lengths. At this point you can use a floured fork or a gnocchi in a single layer on a parchment-lined tray. You can use this tray to freeze them individually and then transfer to a ziploc bag.

Cooking the gnocchi

  • Place the gnocchi, a quarter-batch at a time, into a pot of boiling well-salted water. Cook until they float - about 2 minutes - allow to drain and then place into a wide rimmed bowl
  • Reheat the tomato broth. Pour broth over the gnocchi. Garnish with small basil leaves or slivered basil. and or freshly grated Parmesan Cheese or even some fresh ricotta

Tagine Chicken with Olives and Preserved Lemons

I received a lovely gift from my sister-in-law when she came to visit a couple of weeks ago. Firstly let me say this is not my first tagine recipe that I have blogged about. However because of my sister-in-law this is the first one in an actual Tagine.

What a unique cooking vessel. Not unlike a cast iron pan that you must first season before using, the Tagine needs a little attention ahead of time as well. Both pieces need to be completely submerged in water for 6 hours up to 24 hours. Then you need to dry them off and let them sit for an hour, take 3 tablespoons of olive oil and rub into the base and inside of the lid. Then you place both pieces; separately in a cold oven and turn on to 350’F and let them bake for 2 hours.

I know quite the process, up side is you only have to do this process once as long as you use your tagine again within 6 months. The consensus from the fam is we want to explore more Moroccan food. The aroma and flavors are warm and inviting so flavorful.

I do have to admit my first go around with the this recipe could have gone a lot smoother had I read the recipe myself. We had all had a very stressful day/week and had the chicken marinating over night so we were making this dish with not a lot of time. My daughter read me the directions and I followed. It took way longer than it should have, it was still delicious but I was not thrilled; it just added even more stress to my day. So I will tell you here to brown your chicken and the onions in a frying pan before adding to the Tagine to finish the job. It will go much more smoothly for you.

You will need a diffuser so the clay pot is not on an open flame

Chicken Tagine with Olive and Preserved Lemons

dclarkabal
A warm your belly dish that fills your home with a wonderful aroma
Course dinner, Main Course
Cuisine Moroccan
Servings 4 servings

Equipment

  • Tagine
  • Frying pan

Ingredients
  

  • 5 cloves garlic finely chopped
  • ¼ teaspoon saffron threads pulverized or steeped in water as we did
  • ½ teaspoon ground Ginger
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • ½ teaspoon cumin
  • ½ teaspoon turmeric
  • Kosher salt and black pepper
  • 4 chicken thighs or you can cut up a whole chicken and use all the pieces
  • 2 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 medium onions sliced thin
  • 1 cinnamon stick we didn't do this, this time around
  • 8 green olives pitted and halved
  • 8 kalamata Olives pitted and halved, we didn't have on hand
  • 1 large preserved lemon quartered, pulp removed and thinly sliced
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • ½ lemon juiced
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh parsley chopped for garnish

Instructions
 

  • Mix garlic, saffron, ginger, paprika, cumin and turmeric together plus a 1/2 teaspoon Kosher salt. Add pepper to taste. Rub chicken with mixture, cover, refrigerate and marinate 3 hours to overnight
  • Heat oil in heavy skillet. Add chicken, and brown on all sides. Remove to platter. Add onions to skillet, and cook over medium-low heat about 15 minutes, until lightly browned. Transfer to tagine, if you are using one, or leave in skillet. If using add the cinnamon stick
  • Put chicken on onions. Scatter with olives. Quarter the lemons, remove pulp and cut skin in strips. Scatter over chicken. Mix stock with the lemon juice. Pour over chicken.
  • Cover tagine or skillet. Place over low heat, and cook about 30 minutes, until chicken is done. Scatter parsley on top, and serve
Keyword Chicken, olives, preserved lemon, Tagine

 

Soba noodle salad with roasted chicken


Current situation is I am in the den trying to write my blog, my sister-in-law is in the kitchen doing dishes, her husband is helping my husband with his snowmobile seat replacement. My brother-in-law and his GF just left to head home to the Cape which is why I am in the den trying to write. Oh and my daughter and her BF just woke up and came downstairs. To say it was a hectic kind of morning is an understatement. Oh and I forgot my son came down with his dog to run and play with my dog and they are both roaming around the kitchen.


This is kind of a typical day around here, and I am not complaining.


This simple salad recipe was fast to come together and really quite delicious; even the next day for lunch it was great. I am not sure if it would have made 2 days for lunch but I would love to make this again and so would the fam.

I am not sure who came up with the grocery stores roasting a bunch of chickens and selling them but I think they were brilliant. I buy them fairly often for our house and at least once a month for my in-laws who we are still grocery shopping for. We started shopping for them due to Covid but since they are in their 90’s I think it is more of a convenience for them plus I pretty much get carte-blanche for the most part of what to buy so I know they are eating pretty well.

Soba noodle salad with soy-lime dressing and roasted shredded chicken

dclarkabal
a light but filling and delicious salad for dinner or lunch or both
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

soy-lime dressing

  • 1 tablespoon freshly grated lime zest
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed lime juice roughly 3 large limes
  • 2 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 1 teaspoon Sriracha hot sauce
  • 1 clove garlic minced
  • 1 teaspoon packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons canola oil
  • 1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

salad

  • 8 ounces soba noodle
  • 2 cups roasted chicken shredded
  • ½ English cucumber we used ours from the garden, halved lengthwise, seeded and sliced into half moons
  • 1 cup edamame, shelled cooked according to the package instructions
  • ½ cup coarsely chopped cilantro leaves plus more for serving
  • 2 scallions thinly sliced on the bias
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds plus more for serving
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • freshly grated lime zest and wedges for serving

Instructions
 

Dressing

  • in a bowl, whisk together the lime zest, juice, soy sauce, Sriracha, garlic and the brown sugar. Whisking constantly, add the oil in a slow steady stream. The dressing, you can make the dressing ahead of time and it can be kept in the refrigerator in a airtight container for about a week.

Salad

  • cook the soba noodle according to the package directions. Drain and then rinse with cold water and set aside.
  • combine the noodles, chicken, cucumber, edamame, cilantro, scallions, sesame seeds in a large bowl. Add the dressing and toss to combine. Adjust the seasoning to taste.
  • divide the noodle salad into 4 bowls and sprinkle with sesame seeds, cilantro and lime zest and serve with lime wedges.

Tuna Poke Bowl

 

I can say without a doubt that just a few years ago I would not be talking about let alone making and eating raw fish. This is my first time making a poke bowl and it was SO good. I am looking forward to making it again. So are my husband and daughter; we all really enjoyed dinner the other night.

I fried up the wontons in a little oil after cutting them into triangles.  We chose mango, avocado, pickled ginger and I didn’t have scallions so I added chives. I think it could be even better with scallions.

Tuna Poke is a Hawaiian salad of raw tuna marinated in soy sauce, sesame oil, and a few other flavorings. We had ours over sushi rice with some yummy toppings. I will share with you how I made mine and you pick and choose how you make yours.

I hope you all enjoy the last weekend of summer – not technically just seems that way!

Tuna Poke Bowls

dclarkabal
a great introduction to raw fish, comes together quickly and has wonderful flavor
Prep Time 20 mins
Course dinner, Main Course

Ingredients
  

  • ¼ cup + 2 Tbs soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon sriracha or Sambal Oelek
  • 2 teaspoons ginger freshly grated or tubed
  • 3 scallions, white and green parts thinly sliced - or chives
  • 1 pound sushi-grade ahi tuna diced into ¼ or ½ inch pieces
  • 2 cups sushi rice cooked according to package instructions

toppings - optional choose which ones you like

  • sliced avocado
  • sliced cucumber
  • edamame
  • pickled ginger
  • diced mango
  • toasted sesame seeds
  • wonton crisps

Instructions
 

  • in a medium bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, vegetable oil, sesame oil, honey, hot sauce, ginger and scallions. Add the tuna and toss. Let it sit in the fridge for a minimum of 15 minutes up to an hour.
  • to serve, scoop some rice into a medium bowl, top with the tuna poke and whichever toppings you chose. There will be a little extra sauce if you wish to drizzle over the top of everything.

Sheet Pan Chicken and Cabbage

Procrastination is the word of the weekend!

I feel like every time I go and do something on my list I have a “squirrel” moment. We were all going to a pool party yesterday afternoon. Brings me back to my youth; I wonder if that is where my love of parties comes from hmmmm interesting.  I was going to write my blog, pack the cooler, suits and extra clothes before we left. Instead I went out to the garden to weed and harvest, then I came in and processed a ton of tomatoes, divvied up some granola I made and picked up the house?

So here I am about to sit down this morning and write. Squirrel lets strip the bed and start the laundry, and oh the dishes and I should really take the pile off my desk aka the drop zone so while my pictures are downloading I will have it already to do. I have issues I know!

So here I am again, and please don’t think this recipe isn’t something I really want to share, It was so good I had the two leftovers for lunch last week. Plus I overheard my husband talking with someone at the party about what my wife made with some cabbage from the garden and it was really good. I love sheet pan dinners, they are super easy and all the ones I have made are blog worthy.

Sheet pan chicken and cabbage

dclarkabal
comes together quickly with great flavor
Course dinner
Servings 4 people

Ingredients
  

  • 8 pieces bone-in skin-on chicken thighs and/or drumsticks
  • 1 head cabbage
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ cup olive oil or melted coconut oil
  • 3 tablespoon soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice wine vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon Sriracha
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions
 

  • pre-heat oven to 425°F and grease a sheet pan
  • Season chicken on both sides with salt and pepper. In a small bowl add the oils, soy sauce, vinegar, and sriracha. You don't have to use the sriracha if you don't like a little heat but I strongly recommend it. Add a little less if you want. Pour 1/4 of this mixture over the chicken. Note if you are using melted coconut oil you will want the chicken at room temperature. I didn't do this and it coagulated. Let it marinade while the oven pre-heats 10-15 minutes.
  • Cut the cabbage in half through the core, cut the each core again, keep doing this until you have slices of cabbage, all a little less than and inch thick. I removed my core which is why mine are not holding together in chunks. Your choice remove or keep intact. Season the cabbage with salt and pepper then place in a large bowl and cover with the leftover marinade.
  • Place the chicken on the sheet pan and into the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and place the cabbage around and under the chicken if needed. Back into the oven to roast for 20 - 25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through. Transfer the chicken to a platter and return the cabbage to the oven to get a little caramelized about 10-25 more minutes. Serve warm.

Spaghetti with lemon and summer cherry tomatoes


Mary Mary quite contrary how does your garden grow?

I would say; if asked that it is doing OK; just OK because somethings are doing way better than others. I would argue that it’s more the weathers fault than my own; how could you dispute it? July was the rainiest on record, August has been hazy hot and humid and still a bit damp. Later today we are supposed to get rain and wind from hurricane Henri. Even being an hour and a half from the coast we still feel some of the weather. Flooding is being talked upped quite a bit over the weekend around here. If you are on the coast please stay safe!

Back to the garden – our sunburst cherry tomatoes are popping. I picked all I could yesterday and will be making this recipe sometime for dinner this week. If you like simple recipes that pack a punch of flavor and you have an abundance of cherry tomatoes; this one is for you.
My daughter made this last weekend while we were away so I only had the leftovers for lunch. Even a couple of days later it was delicious. Super flavorful with just a little heat.

Spaghetti with lemon and summer cherry tomatoes

dclarkabal
a simple summer pasta with a punch of lemon and heat

Ingredients
  

  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 5 cloves garlic smashed and sliced
  • 3 pints cherry tomatoes 1 pint halved
  • 1 teaspoon habanero chile finely diced
  • 2 lemons zested and juiced
  • 1 pound dried bucatini or use thick spaghetti if you can't find it
  • cup Parmesan Reggiano grated or use pecorino, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup fresh basil leaves roughly chopped, plus more for serving
  • 1 cup fresh parsley roughly chopped, plus more for serving
  • 2-3 links Italian sausage optional

Instructions
 

  • Heat the oil in a large saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, do not walk away from the stove. Cook until it is light brown, about 2 minutes. Add all of the tomatoes and chile. Season generously with salt. Cook until the tomatoes begin to burst, 8-10 minutes. Stir in half the lemon zest and all of the lemon juice. Continue to cook until most of the tomatoes have burst and begun to break down, 3-5 minutes. Set them aside and cover to keep warm.
  • Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the bucatini and cook according to the package directions until al dente
  • Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water, drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Add the tomato mixture, grated cheese, and ½ cup of the pasta water to the pot and toss to combine. Add additional pasta water, as needed, to make a light sauce. Stir in the fresh herbs and a generous drizzle of olive oil. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve warm with a sprinkle of fresh herbs, more grated cheese and some lemon zest
  • If using sausage, slice 1 to 1½ inch pieces and sauté in a pan until browned and cooked through. Add on top and around the pasta once plated

 

Grilled flounder with a tarragon (mostly parsley) lime Escabeche

Served along side roasted potatoes from our garden

 

How many times have you had something stick to your grill, oiled and or hot enough not it happens. I do not proclaim to be a grill master by any means. I have always used a gas grill so it goes without saying that if I were to grill on charcoal flame it would take some adjustment on my part. Who knows maybe some day I’ll bite the bullet and get a dual grill, probably not!

Anyway here is a method of cooking that might be of some interest to you if you are to ever need to cook a delicate fish on a grill, any type of fueled grill. Plus it adds a little lemon love to your fish which is always welcomed in my world.

The Escabeche is a Spanish sauce and a great way to add a little punch of flavor to such a delicate white fish. Were tarragon is a or can be a powerful herb; my daughter was making this recipe from her Cook Beautiful cookbook and the smell of the tarragon made her quite gun shy so her sauce had more parsley than tarragon. I will share with you the recipe how it was written but you do you and make it however you want.

Grilled flounder with a tarragon (mostly parsley) Escabeche sauce

dclarkabal
a great way to grill delicate fish with a nice sauce

Ingredients
  

Fish

  • 4-6 large lemons 1 lemon per fillet
  • 4-6 fillets
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

Escabeche

  • 1 clove garlic smashed
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 limes zested and juiced
  • 1 cup packed fresh tarragon finely chopped
  • ½ cup packed fresh parsley finely chopped
  • 1 jalapeno pepper seeded and deveined finely diced
  • Kosher salt and black pepper

Instructions
 

Fish

  • Preheat grill over medium-high heat to about 400°F. Cut each lemon into five slices, discarding the ends. Drizzle the fish with olive oil and season with salt and pepper.
  • Add the sliced lemon on the grill in clusters of five. Place one fillet on each cluster of lemon slices. Make sure that none of the fish is touching the grill grates. Close the lid and let the fish cook through. roughly 6 to 8 minutes. Using a wide spatula, carefully lift the fish and lemons off the grill. Serve with the Escabeche sauce

Tarragon Escabeche

  • mash the garlic clove with salt to make a paste.
  • in a bowl, whisk together the oil, lime juice and zest, along with the mashed garlic. Add the tarragon and parsley and jalapeno. Stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper and set aside until ready to use.

Meat Jun with Somen Dressing Chopped Salad

This recipe is a slight collaboration between my daughter and I; since I work from home my job was to make the marinade and add the steak to it so it had time to gather all the yumminess – which for only marinating for a couple of hours had a ton of flavor. This is another recipe from one of her favorite cookbooks Aloha Kitchen.

Trying to find some motivation on another rainy Sunday here in NH I know I shouldn’t complain about the weather as there are so many crazy weather patterns out there around the world and so much worse than ours. But this has been the soggiest July on record here in Southern NH. It actually broke the last record set back in 1915. The best crop in my yard are the mushrooms growing all around in my lawn. My poor garden is producing a few things here and there but my tomatoes are looking a little “under the weather”

We were fortunate to have a wonderful day yesterday; the sun was shining all day. We were able to go to a postponed fourth of July Paella BBQ party and spend some much needed time with wonderful friends we haven’t seen all summer. It was topped off with a little fireworks display and some yummy desserts.


My other job was to add the rice to the rice cooker. If it were not for my daughter I could say without a doubt I would not have ever had a rice cooker in the house. She had one when she lived in Japan and bought one almost immediately when she moved back home and we use it quite often; not only for rice but we put steel cut oats in it at night and set the timer so we have fresh warm oatmeal for breakfast – Great purchase!

My daughter took two recipes from the cookbook and made a lovely dinner

Meat Jun

A mixed plate you can make at home

Ingredients
  

Meat Jun marinade

  • 2 pounds round steak or you can use chuck, tri-tip or flank steak
  • cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon ginger
  • 2 garlic cloves
  • 3 green onions green and white, chopped
  • 1 cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon sesame seeds toasted, ground
  • ¼ cup sesame oil
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

dipping sauce

  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon gochujang
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar
  • tablespoon honey
  • 1 teaspoon sesame seed toasted, ground
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 garlic clove minced
  • 1 teaspoon ginger
  • 2 green onions thinly sliced

steak coating

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 5 large eggs
  • 3 cups steamed rice
  • oil for frying

Instructions
 

marinade

  • in a ziploc bag, combine the brown sugar, ginger, garlic, green onions, soy sauce, sesame seeds, sesame oil, and pepper. Close the bag and shake the bag well to combine all the ingredient. Add steak and transfer to the refrigerator for 1-2 hours.

Dipping Sauce

  • in a small bowl whisk together the soy sauce, gochunjang, rice vinegar, honey, sesame seeds, sesame oil, pepper, garlic, ginger, and green onions.

making the steak

  • Line a plate with paper towels and set aside. In a shallow bowl add the flour, in another shallow bowl, beat the eggs. In a large enough pan to fry the steak, add 1/4 inch of frying oil. and heat over medium-low heat. Once the oil is shimmering. Remove the steak from the marinade and discard the marinade. Set the meat in a dish, working in batches, dredge the meat, one piece at a time into the flour, shaking off the excess, then dip into the egg mixture, letting the excess drip off before placing each piece into the skillet. Fry until golden brown 1-2 minutes on each side. Set on the paper towel-lined plate to drain. Repeat until all meat is fried.
  • Serve warm with the dipping sauce and steamed rice

Somen Salad Dressing

a quick simple chopped salad dressing
Course Side Dish

Ingredients
  

Dressing

  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoon sesame oil
  • ¼ cup mirin

Salad

  • carrots shredded
  • cucumbers peeled, sliced into match sticks
  • cabbage shredded, or sliced thin
  • snow peapods diced

Instructions
 

Dressing

  • combine the sugar, chicken broth, soy sauce, sesame oil, and mirin in a jar with a lid. Shake together until the sugar has dissolved. Store in the refrigerator until ready to use up to two weeks

Salad

  • peel and slice the cucumbers, shred or buy shredded carrots, shred or slice the cabbage and dice the pea pods. Arrange on a plate and when ready to eat. Add some of the dressing and combine the salad.

 

 

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