Archive for November, 2014

23rd November
2014
written by admin

Week 47 – November 19, 2014 – November 25, 2014
Made on November 19, 2014

This week I made meatballs in the slow cooker using a recipe I found on Allrecipes.com. I had been wanting to try and make meatballs since I had these amazing ones during one of the Woodinville wine tasting events years ago. I don’t know if it’s possible to recreate meatballs as good as were at that event, but I’ll try. And the first step to that is learning how to make them in the first place.

I pretty much followed the recipe as is, except I used panko breadcrumbs instead of Italian breadcrumbs. I imagine that I changed the flavor a bit by using panko… but that’s what I had at home. The comments recommend baking the meatballs before putting them in slow-cooker, to help keep them together. I didn’t, but I did do all the prep Tuesday night and left the meatballs in the fridge overnight. Perhaps chilling them like that helped them stay together because I didn’t have too much of a problem with them falling apart. Additionally, the comments say that you can add cheese to the meatballs to make cheesy ones. I would have totally done that if I had read the comments first. I also recommend paying attention to how large/small you’re chopping the onion. A large chop will make it easy for the meatballs to fall apart. I chopped the onions up pretty small to help them stay together.

Overall the meatballs were good. I should have used more parsley. I think as I cook more, I’ll learn the right amount of herbs and spices to make things taste good for me.

22nd November
2014
written by admin

Week 46 – November 12, 2014 – November 18, 2014
Made on November 15, 2014

I actually made this before the biscuits, but I’m counting this one as the bonus because it just seemed too simple to count. Also, I didn’t get a picture of it.

I made it for a pre-Thanksgiving potluck a friend was having. I originally wanted to make the biscuits for it, but someone had already claimed biscuits so I was trying to think of something to bring that was Thanksgiving-y and wasn’t taken. I used this recipe from Allrecipes.com. I had frozen cranberries in the freezer. So I left them out to thaw for a few hours. Then I already had sugar and orange juice in the fridge. I didn’t squeeze orange juice fresh from oranges, I just used orange juice from a carton. I’m not sure if that’s what you’re supposed to do… but that’s what I did. I also put in a few drops of vanilla extract. I don’t know if the vanilla made a difference but people seemed to like it just fine. If you’re ever in the need for a last minute cranberry sauce recipe, this one works well.

21st November
2014
written by admin

Week 46 – November 12, 2014 – November 18, 2014
Made on November 17, 2014

This week I decided to try these biscuits. The picture on Food and Wine made them look so good! However, mine didn’t turn out as well… I don’t know if the butter wasn’t chilled enough, or maybe I kneaded the dough too much, but they didn’t fluff up at all. I was disappointed. I also didn’t taste any of the gruyere. Perhaps I left them in the oven too long even though I took them out 5 minutes before the recipe called for? Or maybe I should have put more cheese than the recipe called for?

I really wanted this recipe to be good. It sounds like it should be. But I don’t know how to fix it.

I did you this opportunity to use some of my finishing salts. I used a different one on each column of biscuits and I was excited to taste that the salts did add a change in flavor. I ended up liking the lava salt the best on these biscuits.

20th November
2014
written by admin

Week 45 – November 5, 2014 – November 11, 2014
Made on November 10, 2014

I think I must have thought I was still behind, because I’ve been cooking a lot recently…

I also decided to make some chili as it’s been getting colder. This is a recipe I use from Allrecipes.com. I love being able to throw things in the slow-cooker and then come home to a delicious meal. I just use this recipe as a guide though. I usually add more meat and only one can of beans instead of two. I also only put in one onion instead of two. Other than that, I keep the recipe mostly the same. Depending on how spicy you like your chili, you can add or remove some of the cayenne pepper. I usually put a little less than 1 tbsp.

19th November
2014
written by admin

Week 45 – November 5, 2014 – November 11, 2014
Made on November 9, 2014

I was going to a friend’s place for a birthday party and wanted to bring something to share with everyone. Some friends and I threw this dip from Food & Wine together. Unfortunately, we were in a rush so I didn’t get any pictures. The items on the ingredients list weren’t the easiest to procure. I ended up getting goat cheese logs, cocktail onions, the pickled jalapeño, and a substitute for peppadew peppers from Amazon Fresh since I couldn’t find anything appropriate at the store. For the peppadew replacement, I got roasted red peppers. Other than the frustration over finding the ingredients, the recipe was super quick and simple to make and very tasty. I would definitely make it again if I wanted to go through the effort of getting the ingredients.

19th November
2014
written by admin

Week 45 – November 5, 2014 – November 11, 2014
Made on November 8, 2014

First of all… I caught up. I’m actually cooking something the week I’m supposed to be cooking something! Hurray!

The last post I talked about having friends over for dinner. I talked about the appetizer in that post, well, in this one, we’ll look at the main course. Again, my friend is vegetarian, so I made this vegetarian casserole from Food & Wine. The recipe itself calls for a chicken broth. I used a vegetable broth to make it actually vegetarian. I also couldn’t find beefsteak tomatoes, so I just used tomatoes I found at the store. I don’t know if that changed the flavor at all. Lastly, I think I went a little overboard with the cheese, but you know you can never go wrong with adding more cheese. :) The casserole was ok. It could have used a little more flavor/interest. Maybe some more salt and pepper, or some other spices. It wasn’t bad, but it also didn’t “wow” me either.

18th November
2014
written by admin

Week 44 – October 29, 2014 – November 4, 2014
Made on November 8, 2014

This week, I had a couple friends over for dinner and since of the friends is vegetarian, I started looking into the vegetarian dishes I have pinned. I usually don’t look at those recipes, so this was a good opportunity to check them out. For our appetizer, I decided to make a this salad I had found on Food & Wine. When I went to the grocery store, I didn’t know what radicchio looked like. Apparently it looks like a smaller red cabbage. But it’s not a cabbage. Also when this recipe says “bitter”, it means it. I used toasted walnuts instead of hazelnuts because that’s what I had at home. The nuts really helped cut through the bitterness, as did the cheese. I don’t recommend eating this without something to cut through the bitterness.

17th November
2014
written by admin

Week 43 – October 22, 2014 – October 28, 2014
Made on November 2, 2014

Something I had been wanting to do for a long time is try to make Ratatouille like in the movie. I had seen this pinned on Pinterest and decided it was time to try it out. Overall, the recipe was easy to follow, it was just a little time consuming. I definitely recommend reading through the whole recipe first, so that you can figure out how to parallelize actions. I spent a bunch of time chopping one thing while things were roasting in the oven, instead of chopping everything first. The other recommendation I have is to pay attention to the diameter of the vegetables you get. If you get a super wide eggplant, but super skinny squash, layering the slices will be odd because the smaller diameter pieces will get lost.

16th November
2014
written by admin

Week 42 – October 15, 2014 – October 21, 2014
Made on November 1, 2014

This week I decided to try this recipe for South Indian Beef Curry from Food & Wine. I wasn’t sure what to expect with this recipe. I wasn’t sure what it meant by hot chiles, so I ended up with Thai Chilies because that’s what I found at the store. Overall, it was pretty easy to make, but I found the recipe to be very dry. That is, there wasn’t much curry. It was definitely Fragrant South Indian Beef, but there wasn’t much curry there. I’m curious about how I can change this recipe to create more of a curry here. I would try this recipe again.

15th November
2014
written by admin

Week 41 – October 8, 2014 – October 14, 2014
Made on November 1, 2014

I’ve been meaning to try this recipe for a while. It’s something I had seen on Food & Wine and it sounded interesting. I didn’t know what Bottarga was so I figured this recipe would give me a chance to find out. Well, it turns out it’s a type of roe and it’s not easy to find. Instead, I decided to just use roe that I could find at Whole Foods. The one I got was one commonly used on Sushi, but as I write this… I can’t remember the type.

In any case, I wasn’t a big fan of this recipe. I couldn’t figure out what kind of consistency the eggs should have in the end. The recipe calls for cooking the eggs for about 12 minutes, but mine would always be done way ahead of that time (I tried making this recipe a few times to see if I could do something differently). Maybe if I had actually found Bottarga, I would have like it better, but it also seemed like a lot of trouble to go through for some eggs on toast.

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