tasty nom nom an exception to the daily meal

20Jul/130

Too much fuss

Dear Dinner People - The fuzzies and I are very sorry that you had to share a fuzzy fussy evening with us. The fuzzy is doing better, we are still tuning the medication. We hope you enjoyed the evening, all things considered.

 beverage, in vintage style blue Ball jars 

I was checking out  chow's patio pounder recipes (that title wins!) but couldn't decide which to make. Then I saw this Carrot Orange Ginger Bourbon cocktail. I took a short cut and used Knudsen's Orange Carrot juice, and G bought Vernor's Ginger Ale (of course). Splashed with booze, and served with a bendy straw. I was wrong in thinking it was a girly drink and did not have enough ingredients on hand for more rounds. I know nothing about dinner people's beverage preferences!

I was starving and think we waited an excruciating long time for G to finish the sausage stuffed little peppers. One of our favorites. I think he was done much sooner but took All The Time lining up the peppers perfectly on the plate, charred side down.

Untitledeat appetizer first

For dinner, we had meatballs made with spicy italian sausage, ground pork, and ground chicken breast, with lots of flat leaf parsley, liberal addition of grated parmesan cheese, long squeeze of anchovy paste, handful of crushed croutons, black pepper and an egg.

Untitledmessy plate 

Meatballs were served with caramelized onions and peppers, polenta, and marinara sauce.  I used Newman's. I forgot about the sauce, and left it on simmer, while I watched the Ticket to Ride Boardgame with Scott video.  When I took the lid off, the red sauce splatter was spectacular. There should be a Kitchen Olympic event for sauce splatter. I added a last minute cucumber red onion salad, so we would have something green for dinner.

We took a break while I settled down the fuzzy. Even though it was touch and go evening, we managed to try a new game - Ticket to Ride BGG. I concur with Boardgame Scott, it is a good entry game. It is a route building game - each person selects routes, draws and spends train cards to build those routes. Points are given when segments are built, then again at the end of the game. I like the part where points are deducted at the end if a selected route is incomplete. I got caught where I didn't realize I do not have enough trains to build a route towards the end of the game.

Untitledtrains on the map of United States

I think we all enjoyed this game. Though there was much table talk about making wooden pieces, to replace the plastic trains. I think we are spoiled by Rio Grande games, where their pieces are usually wood.

Until next time, hope it will be a less eventful evening.

15Jul/130

Crab Walk

Dear E,

I thought it was funny when you were surprised at the menu this time around. "Crab cakes for the main course?" It's not strange to me, Maryland-girl that I am. If you have crab cakes as an appetizer, doesn't that wreck your palate for everything that follows?

crabcakeaction-1217
crab cake action shot

N makes my favorite crab cakes. Ever since he made me a crab cake years ago, I have been spoiled for all others. When he suggested making crab cakes this time, I was fully behind it.

N's crab cakes don't have a lot of filler. He uses some green onion, Old Bay, panko, egg, s&p... but they are almost all crab. He puts the seasoning into the egg and then blends it into the crab meat, which keeps it fairly evenly distributed.

While N made the crab cakes, I threw together a quick remoulade sauce based on this one at Simply Recipes. The tricky flavor in it? Dill pickle juice. I had no idea!

crabcake-1218
plated

Add a little piece of corn and some of my randomslaw, done!

After I set the table, a certain spoiled cat thought I set a place for him at the table. Bad boy!

tomato & fennel salad
tomato & fennel salad

I also made a second salad after I read a few people suggest this as a good side for crab cakes. My new favorite salad! It's an Ina Garten recipe but let's just call it tomatoes, fennel, lemon juice, cider vinegar, s&p, and olive oil. N believes it would be better with some thin sliced sweet onion. I disagree. I ate so much of this salad. I added some of the fennel fronds from the top to it for some green color.

In order to cool it down without popping it into the fridge, I placed a bag of ice on top of it for an hour or two before dinner. I'm looking forward to making this one again soon with some of my tomatoes.

After dinner, I swapped seats with G and we played Uno (you won? I think) and then we played Carcassonne.

carcassonne
Carcassonne Win!

I never win Carcassonne. If N and I play one another, he always destroys me. If I win Carcassonne once against N, G, and you that could just be luck.

If I win twice in a row, the rest of you must have it's-too-hot brain! It was good for my ego to win twice.

Next time you can meet our new residents. They'll be part of Tasty Nom Nom dinners in one way or another soon!