tasty nom nom an exception to the daily meal


Fowl and Fish

Good day, E!

A few weeks ago our next door neighbor went fishing and caught a bunch of salmon. He brought us a few to smoke. N smoked them with a lot of seasoning and a few of them are a bit over-seasoned. "No problem," I thought. "I'll just make a spread."

salmon spread

I flaked half of a filet of salmon and then added 6 ounces of cream cheese and 4 ounces of crème fraîche to it until it was a spreadable but light consistency. N suggested adding green onion to the spread directly. I decided against it in case the green onion would lose their crunch and I just served them on the side with some quick pickled red onion. It was pretty good on store-bought fresh-baked pumpernickel bread.

While we ate all of the salmon spread, N grilled chickens.

N brined two chickens overnight. He coated them in some hatch chile barbeque sauce I made* and then smoked them with a bit of mesquite. They took a bit longer to cook than usual for some reason.

j's plate

I threw together a quick, super-tart cole slaw (oops). I shredded the carrots and added them and they turned the entire batch a pale orange color. Not appealing! I did want it to be a bit tart to counter the slightly-sweet bbq sauce, but not THAT tart.

After an afternoon excursion to Cabela's resulted in the truck being hit and our trip taking a bit longer than expected, I supplemented with some store-bought scalloped potatoes. Since the cole slaw was horrible and G doesn't like chicken, I'm glad I added the potatoes!

After dinner, G suggested we play Settlers of Catan again. I fear he will suggest it every week until he wins a game!

not more settlers of catan!

We played two rounds -- you won the first one, N won the second. I guess that means more Settlers of Catan next week? Oh no. I might have to banish our copy with the Uno deck.

* Hatch Chile BBQ Sauce
6 fresh Hatch chile peppers
2 TBSP olive oil
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
1 medium yellow onion, chopped
1/2 cup Guinness
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
1 29 oz. can tomato sauce

Roast chile peppers over flame to blister and char all sides. Once charred, place peppers in paper bag to sweat for 10 minutes. Remove the charred skin along with the stem and seeds then rinse the peppers under cold running water.

Heat olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic and onion and cook until tender. Add the chiles along with the remaining ingredients. Bring to a simmer and cook over medium-low heat for 30 minutes. Remove from heat and let set for 10 minutes to cool slightly.

Place sauce in food processor or blender and puree.


New math

Hi J - Wow. TIme flies when we are busy with canine appointments. It has been two weeks since this dinner and weather has definitely turned to early fall.

At a little after 4pm on that Saturday, after noticing G had set up the charcoal already...


me: what time are you starting the grill?
G: 5pm
me: I thought you said the cooking time is 2 hours+
G: yes.
me: doesn't the charcoal take half an hour, and then resting time.
G: there is that.

And there you have it. Never mind that was an exact repeat of an earlier conversation in the morning.

Untitledradish and cheese

I present to you food backup plan A - radish with cheese. I found some radish in the drawer that needed a little love. I stw and selected the first recipe. I made a quick cheese, drizzled with olive oil infused with lemon zest and garlic, and ground peppers.

Untitledcharred bits of tongue

Plan B - beef tongue. Marinated thin sliced beef tongue with the usual suspect of soy sauce, rice vinegar, and gochujang. The special ingredient was yuzu wikipedia. I added some to the marinate and sprinkled more just before serving. I like the sweet tangy taste of the citrus.

I did neglect to take a picture of my plate. I only have a photo of the [store bought] marinated tri-top roast. Served with [store bought] au gratin potatoes and simple romaine salad. Oh wait, I think it was scallop potatoes. Someone with more potato knowledge should explain the difference between au gratin and scallop, or read this chowhound discussion threat.


After dinner, who had the bright idea of Settlers of Catan, again? G, who also switched up the colors, which caused all kinds of issues.


I think N won this one. I've blocked out this six bijillionth Catan game.  Hope you enjoyed the evening. See you next time.

Filed under: dinner review No Comments

See Food Diet

Dear E,

It feels like laziness when I plan a redux menu. A couple of weeks ago we were laughing at the memory of you eating thousands of mussels at dinner a few years ago. I decided we'd see if my favorite eastside fishmonger had mussels for this week.

They did! Nice, fresh Penn Cove mussels. They also had a few different sizes of oysters and N picked out a few of them as well before supplementing with some very large oysters from Whole Foods.

n shuck

For appetizer, N did Oysters Nick, his version of Oysters Rockefeller. He tops the oysters with hot sauce (Pain is Good Batch 37 Garlic Style) and garlic butter, then tops with a bit of shredded romano and grills it. The cheese is mostly there to hold everything else together.


These oysters were enormous!

Saturday morning I knit and flipped through a couple of cookbooks looking for a salad that would go along with mussels. In Jasper White's The Summer Shack Cookbook I found a green bean, red onion, and blue cheese salad.


I blanched trimmed green beans, tossed them with shredded romaine and quick-pickled red onion and a simple dijon vinaigrette I added a bit of blue cheese to. I topped the salad with more crumbled blue cheese and chopped Kalamata olives. I think it worked out with the main event...

Just as he did a few years ago, N made two types of mussels: garlic butter wine mussels and Thai green curry mussels.


Lots of cilantro, lemongrass, fish sauce, lime zest (we had trouble finding kaffir lime leaves-- I should just buy some the next time I see them and stash them in the freezer), shallot, garlic, coconut milk, and green curry paste for the Thai green curry mussels. This recipe looks fairly close to what N made.

After dinner, you treated us to mooncakes from Regent Bakery & Cafe. You mentioned an NPR piece about refrigeration of mooncakes -- it is both interesting and funny. Refrigerate moon cakes now, after hundreds of years of storing without refrigeration? Never.


I think my favorite mooncakes were the egg custard ones, followed by the winter melon.

The autumn harvest coincides with football -- the first weekend of real college football season led to the boys watching the end of the UW game while we made coffee and shared mooncakes.


Once the football game was over, we didn't have much time left in the evening so we just played a round of Uno. I tried to convince us to play something else with no luck.

Funny how your "lack of strategy" led to you winning Uno, isn't it? Until next time...

Filed under: dinner review No Comments

More pork with that

Pork, that's what's for dinner.

Untitledsavory snack

We started with a  quick snack of some salumi, with some peppers and fresh mozzarella, drizzled with some olive oil and balsamic vinegar. Quick, simple, and tasty.

For dinner, we had thick cut pork chops from Fischers. But what to do when face with don't-want-another-usual-brine for pork chops? add beer. I modified the brine recipe by mixing beer with chicken broth, instead of water, and added some rosemary.  Let me pause and say it was very nice to get the pork chops, via Amazon Fresh on Friday night. I did not have to hassle G to go to the store on Friday evening, or get up early on Saturday.

Untitledpile high

I had intentions of getting some greens, but couldn't find any, so default to a boxed herb salad, dressed with mustard vinaigrette.  And we should have more pork. I sauteed some bacon, with apples and a celery root with some red onions. I couldn't taste the difference between the apples and the celery root. But eating the leftover at room temperature a couple of days later, the celery taste was more visible. I will probably not use the celery root again, it added no value.

What is not pictured are the potatoes G made. When I gave him the menu, he decided we needed another item. I vetoed corn (which we had last time together), then he suggested potatoes. "N likes potato". I do, a little too. My less-carb plan was foiled. I mentally blocked out the item until the very last minute, when I remember we do not have fixings. The horror. Thank you for bringing sour cream and chives.

After dinner, we tried a new to us games - Family Business BGG. Because of  the family and death theme, it reminds me both of Gloom BGG and Guillotine BGG. The object is to be the last one standing. Lots of [killing] contracts, double cross,  family influence, etc.  Mob members are lined up when a player puts a contract, they may be counter or rescue. Once there are six mob members lined up, mob war starts, and does not end until they are all dead, or peace (card). When there are six mob members left, Mob War is trigger, and the last one standing wins.

There was a bit of stare-off-in-space where someone plays a counter card, and it becomes that player's turn. It is like Uno, where Reverse and Skip can be a snoozer,  for the other players.

UntitledSt Valentine's day in my hand

Family Business - new to us #gamenight J's hand

For a filler game, I generally like it. I am formulating a .. ahem.. strategy ... if it can be called that ...  to be the last one standing. After all the killing, we default to Settlers of Catan, where I had yet another bad placement and lost, spectacularly. Good thing there were Loacker Quadratini Lemon Wafers, the cookies made losing yet another game of Settlers of Catan bearable.


I won Catan tonight! #gamenightJ wins

 That's a wrap. I hope you enjoyed the evening. See you next time.