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What's for Dinner #340 - the Pre-Christmas Rush Edition

Everyone around me is sick or getting sick, so I'm hibernating this Christmas Eve. WFD? Spaghetti & meatballs. I also taste tested the artichoke dip I'm bringing to dinner tomorrow by heating it in a little ramekin. That recipe is kind of gross yet I could probably eat the whole thing. Dang is that tasty.

I'm also bringing spinach & endive salad, dauphinoise potatoes and some mini chocolate cupcakes. I've tried to avoid too mych indulgence but the next two days are off the books.

Wishing everyone a beautiful, happy and healthy holiday!

What's for Dinner #340 - the Pre-Christmas Rush Edition

You are all my heroes, making so much delicious food so close to Christmas. I've had quite a few dinners out lately but tonight I had some nibbles - blue cheese stuffed olives, cashews and pretzels and then I made a little french bread pizza with mushrooms. Because many of these dinners out have been impromptu, I just tossed a bunch of food that's gone bad - I hate, hate, HATE to do that. I'm not grocery shopping again until Saturday.

Now to make a batch of peanut butter blossoms for work tomorrow, then on the the celebrations!

Dec 23, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking
2

What's for Dinner #340 - the Pre-Christmas Rush Edition

So sorry, boyzoma. Thinking of you and your family.

Dec 23, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner #339 -- The Advent Edition [through Dec. 21, 2014]

It really is! The bacon came with a crock of Stilton, a petite boneless ham, cheddar, toffee peanuts, cranberry relish, split pea soup mix, honey mustard, chocolates...she's extremely generous.

Dec 17, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

What's for Dinner #339 -- The Advent Edition [through Dec. 21, 2014]

Feeling the usual overwhelmed week before Christmas. There's just crap strewn everywhere. I need a maid. I did come home to some serious bacon (a gift from my dear auntie), so I got that going for me. Which is nice.

Not sure what to call this: quick marinated mushrooms, marinated beets with horseradish,salami, cornichons, ham, and baby yukons with melted sharp cheddar.

What's for Dinner #339 -- The Advent Edition [through Dec. 21, 2014]

It feels like the 25th has creeped up on me - but that's typical of most years. Have three or four more gifts to purchase.

This time of year I tend to cook a big batch soup on Sundays to be able to grab throughout the week. This week's variety is chunky vegetable, and a big bowl of that and half a grilled cheese on wheat are WFD.

Best Seasonal/Holiday Trader Joe's Items.... for 2014

When I was at my TJs tonight I overheard that the Candy Cane Jo-Jos are dunzo.

Dec 12, 2014
gemvt in Chains

What's For Dinner #338 - Winter Wonderland Edition [through 12/14/14]

Thanks lingua! Although I have a Trader Joe's produce aversion, I have yet to have an issue with the endive there and I think it's either $2.99 or $3.99 for three.

What's For Dinner #338 - Winter Wonderland Edition [through 12/14/14]

What a pisspoor couple of days it's been because of this storm. Hideous commute home last night followed by endless rounds of shoveling of heavy snow. Bah humbug.

WFD: I'm on a bit of an Ina Garten kick. Tonight I'm having her endive and avocado salad, even though the dressing called for lemon and the lemon I have is of indeterminate origin. It's not *brown*, at least. I'll probably supplement with some roasted potatoes.

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - December 2014

Surprising YAY to the Shrimp Spring Rolls in the prepared foods area. Tasted very fresh (even though I forgot about them and the best by date was yesterday, oops) and are relatively healthy. I'll try the tofu ones next, these might be a go-to.

Dec 10, 2014
gemvt in Chains

What's For Dinner #338 - Winter Wonderland Edition [through 12/14/14]

We had a holiday lunch at work and I ate a mini quiche, 3 stuffed mushrooms, salad, chicken satay, a metric ton of sweet & sour meatballs, baguette with butter and half a flourless chocolate cake and half a maple cheesecake (they were individual sized and someone had already taken the other halves, so I figured...). So for dinner I'm roasting a few horseradish crusted potatoes and will saute some spinach, perhaps with feta. Seasons eatings indeed!

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

Mmmmm...corn chowder. With a little spinach to make it feel healthy.

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

We are having the rain/snow mix in Vermont. Yuck!

I made another batch of Ina Garten's lentil vegetable soup today, to have around for lunch this week. I third the recipe and I ended up giving half the batch to my dad, who loves it, but I'll still have it for a couple days. It is the perfect lentil soup (without ham or sausage, that is...)

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

For dinner I am making black bean tostadas. Normally I make my beans with beer. It turns out the bottles in my fridge are shandies, and I just didn't think it would work, so I just used water. Used tons of onion, garlic, cumin and smoked paprika to oomph up the flavor. I also stirred in a bit of TJ's Hatch Valley Salsa - which goes just a tad beyond my heat tolerance - lime juice, and cilantro. We shall see.

Cumin

Lentil soup!

Dec 06, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking
3

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

Rewarding myself for a busy week with pizza from the local flatbread place. Garlic & butter base with sundried tomatoes, sausage, mushrooms, baby artichokes and caramelized onion. It's not home cooked but it's all I got tonight!

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

WFD - tofu tacos on soft corn tortillas. Not vegan though - cheese & sour cream were among the accoutrements, along with romaine, tomatoes, green onion, guac and cilantro.

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

These short, gloomy days are sapping the life outta me so I made a springy sauté of spinach, peas and leeks. Also finished the lentil soup. Come to think of it, spinach/peas/leeks sounds like it will make a nice soup, too!

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

The one I made is the lentil vegetable soup:

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/in...

Ina does have another recipe on the site for lentil soup with kielbasa and that looks wonderful, too!

Dec 03, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

Trader Joe's YAY/MEH/NAY - December 2014

Nay to the Irish Cheddar with Walnuts. Just too - grassy? gamey? Either way, I'm a Vermont cheddar girl so it didn't fly with me.

Dec 02, 2014
gemvt in Chains

What's for Dinner #337 - the It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas & Hanukkah 2014 Edition! [through December 8, 2014]

Probably baking one batch of spritz if that, but I made a big pot of Ina Garten's lentil vegetable soup last night and it's so good that I'll make it again this weekend. You simmer it for ages so it really becomes more of a stew.

Tonight was a wee catastrophe. The shrimp I'd bought a month or so ago at Shaw's and removed from the freezer for defrosting this morning smelled very off, and then I broke my salad spinner, so my hoped-for shrimp caesar salad turned into a plain caesar with somewhat soggy romaine. Can't believe how reliant I am on that gadget! I was still hungry of course, so I made a few TJ's meatless meatballs with marinara.

What's for dinner #336 -- The Thanksgiving 2014 Edition! [through 2 December 2014]

Allie, I loved reading about the fun and adventures you & Pap got up to. So sorry for your loss.

Dec 01, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking
1

What's for dinner #336 -- The Thanksgiving 2014 Edition! [through 2 December 2014]

Sorry, Gio. Hoping you feel better very soon.

Dec 01, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

What's for dinner #336 -- The Thanksgiving 2014 Edition! [through 2 December 2014]

After what felt like an eternity of Thanksgiving leftovers, moving into what I hope is an extended "let's just try to eat less food, lady" phase with a salad. Bibb lettuce, avocado, red onion, croutons topped with a homemade cilantro buttermilk dressing. Ina Garten's lentil vegetable soup is bubbling on the stove for lunches this week - that always makes me feel healthy.

What can I make with ground beef?

I like beef stroganoff with ground beef. And taco casserole!

Nov 30, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

Where could I track down a vintage Carbur's menu?

Once again I'm delayed in my response, but here's the recipe for Suzie's Sassy Sauce. Not sure about the fried cauliflower, though:

Suzie's Sassy Sauce:
1 gal Mayo
1 qt horse radish, well drained
1 qt Sour cream
1 cup Chili sauce
1 Tsp White Pepper
The yield is quite high; you may want to readjust the recipe. Enjoy!

And here is a link to the Cheese Soup:

http://brucecarlin.com/recipes/cheese...

Nov 30, 2014
gemvt in Northern New England

Anyone Remember Red Barn (fast food chain)?

It's so strange, as soon as I google imaged "Red Barn" I immediately remembered there being one in my city when I was very young. I think it's now a gift shop which is called the "gift barn" due to the building, but I'm not totally sure. Talk about a blast from the past!

Nov 30, 2014
gemvt in Chains

Uses for chestnuts

Wow, thanks for all the great suggestions! It's a much more versatile ingredient than I imagined. Most of the recipes I was finding were with Brussels sprouts, and I am sprouted out.

Nov 29, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

Uses for chestnuts

I bought a vacuum pack of chestnuts to use in a Brussels sprouts recipe and then forgot all about them. Any go-to uses or recipes for them?

Nov 29, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

So Far I've Made (from Thanksgiving leftovers):

I like to have a Thanksgiving redux. However, I eat everything but the turkey, so I'm currently warming mashed turnips, gratin potatoes, stuffing and brussels sprouts in the oven. For my appetizer I had brie cheese, crackers and gherkins. I cannot have any dessert around me (because I have a demon sweet tooth) so that'll be it.

Nov 28, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking

Best New Thanksgiving Dish

I used the Neelys recipe for Mashed Turnips and Sage. It was really delicious, but I might cut back on the milk next time.

Nov 27, 2014
gemvt in Home Cooking