Two or three new recipes this week! And, because you’re very lucky, one of my top notch very expert photoshop jobs so you really feel like you were there when it happened! Here’s what we had:
Buffalo chicken salad, pasta salad
The salad was mixed greens, buffalo chicken from frozen, cut in strips; blue cheese, and crunchy fried onions from a can. Clara made a nice pasta salad with one of those infused olive oils, parmesan, feta, lots of garlic, black olives, and basil from the garden.
It had a kind of potluck feel, but still a fine summer meal.
Hamburgers, pasta salad, cheezy weezies
Damien made the burgers outside
and I spent the afternoon putting in tiles for the backsplash in the kitchen! I’ve never had a backsplash before, much less put in a marble backsplash by myself, and I . . . did not do it right. But it looks pretty and I am happy. I still have to do the ceiling, and then I will do a follow-up kitchen reno post. Here is my post about the walls, floor, and trim.
Damien made his trademark Fancy Sandwiches For All.
He split a bunch of baguettes down the middle and drizzled the bread with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, then layered plenty of ham, prosciutto, salami, and pepperoni, mozzarella, tomatoes, fresh basil, and Italian seasoning.
I know I always say that whatever sandwich I’m currently eating is the ideal sandwich, but I’m telling you, this was a good one.
Chicken burgers, chips, strawberries and blueberries
If I were a millionaire, I would still have frozen breaded chicken burgers on potato bread buns with horseradish sauce every few weeks. Yum.
I went shopping on Tuesday and for once remembered to serve the berries on the same day I brought them home. Aldi berries are so cheap — I think the strawberries were $1.29 a pound, and the blueberries were 99 cents a pint — but you really cannot dawdle.
Jump to Recipe
I was at the store and made my usual desperate attempt to match up my pepper list with the pepper bins and the pepper labels, and then I went home and asked Facebook what I had.
It seems I had four Anaheim peppers and a bunch of habañeros, which was a pepper error, because I meant to get some other kind of pepper, but I forget what. So that was pepper error #1. Pepper error #2 was when I heard everyone saying they were super hot, and I was like, “oh, okay, I like hot stuff, but not too too hot, so I will only use two habañeros in my chili.”
I roasted the peppers along with a bunch of tomatillos and jalapeños on a greased pan.
Then I let everything sort of steam itself under plastic wrap, then I skinned them all. This part is fun.
Then I put all the skinned peppers and tomatillos in the food processor with a bunch of onions and garlic and cilantro, and puréed it. That is fun, too, but the picture came out blurry.
I did not seed any of the peppers first. This was pepper error #2a.
I cut the pork into chunks and seared it in oil with plenty of salt and pepper. I wish I had let it brown up a bit more, but at least I didn’t crowd the pot for once.
Then I put the puréed salsa verde into the pot with the pork and let it simmer for several hours.
You can add water or chicken broth, but I wanted it fairly thick. Just before serving, I squeezed some limes over it and served it with cilantro and sour cream.
And now for pepper mistake #3: I ate so much of it. It hurt my whole face and I was sweating from my toenails by the time I was done, and I kept getting more sour cream, but I ate so much. I sopped up the sauce with tortillas, and congratulated myself for not even suffering any heartburn afterward.
My confidence continued until Thursday morning.
Thursday went something like this:
But, that was some really good chili verde.
Greek chicken skewers, yogurt sauce, rice
Jump to Recipe
I made a marinade out of lemon zest and lemon juice, tons of fresh mint, olive oil, honey, and salt and pepper, and marinated chicken breast chunks for several hours, then threaded them on skewers with grape tomatoes and wedges of red onion. Thunderstorms chased us inside, so we had to broil rather than grill it, but it was still tasty. Fresh mint is the best.
Corrie took this picture and is very proud of it:
And I was fairly proud of the meal overall. I served it with pita and yogurt sauce and, as you can see, white rice. Benny made the yogurt sauce.Jump to Recipe
I spent several hours wondering if I should make stuffed grape leaves, and then realizing it was 5:00 and far too late, so I just made a big pot of rice. I made so much rice I may use the leftover for inauthentic grape leaves made with leftover cooked rice today, and no one can stop me! The wild grapes are going nuts this year, and I love cooking with foraged stuff.
We had a spell where we kept running out of eggs, and the kids were just WORN OUT with my incompetence and malfeasance, because they want to cook themselves heaps and heaps of eggs for lunch every day. So I got 3 dozen eggs, and then forgot I had done so, and got 5 dozen eggs.
Guess whose children abruptly stopped cooking eggs?
It’s fine. I’m trying a new dish: Eggs migas. I bought corn tortillas, which I don’t normally do. The basic idea is to cut or tear up tortillas and fry them up in oil until they’re crisp, then scramble an egg into the pieces. You can add various things in while you’re cooking, or you can serve them as garnishes/sides after cooking. I think we’ll stick with salsa, sour cream, and maybe some refried beans. I’m excited! New Mexican food really hits the spot for me. I shall report back on our success.
Okay, here’s a few recipe cards:
Spicy Chili Verde
You can decrease the heat by seeding the peppers, using fewer habañeros, or substituting some milder pepper. It does get less spicy as it cooks, so don't be alarmed if you make the salsa and it's overwhelming!
- 5 lbs pork shoulder
- salt and pepper
- oil for cooking
- 2 cups chicken broth or beer (optional)
For the salsa verde:
- 4 Anaheim peppers
- 2 habañero peppers
- 4 jalapeño peppers
- 4 medium onions
- 12 tomatillos
- 1 head garlic, cloves peeled
- 1 bunch cilantro
- lime wedges
- sour cream
- additional cilantro for topping
Preheat the broiler.
Pull the husks and stems off the tomatillos and rinse them. Cut the ends off all the peppers. Grease a large pan and put the tomatillos and peppers on it. Broil five minutes, turn, and broil five minutes more, until they are slightly charred.
Take the pan out and cover the peppers and tomatillos with plastic wrap or tin foil for ten minutes. When they are cool enough to handle, pull the skins off the peppers and tomatillos. At this point, you can remove the seeds from the peppers to decrease the spiciness if you want.
Put the skinned tomatillos and peppers in a food processor or blender with the onions, garlic, and cilantro. Purée.
In a heavy pot, heat some oil. Salt and pepper the pork chunks and brown them in the oil. You will need to do it in shifts so the pork has enough room and browns rather than simmering.
When all the meat is browned, put it all in the pot and add the puréed ingredients.
Simmer at a low heat for at least three hours until the meat is tender. If you want thinner chili verde, you can add chicken broth or beer. At some point, if you don't want the pork in large chunks, press the meat with the back of a spoon to make it collapse into shreds.
Spoon the chili verde into bowls, squeeze some lime juice over the top, and top with sour cream and fresh cilantro.
Greek chicken skewers
Serve with yogurt sauce. Add pita and rice pilaf or stuffed grape leaves for a nice meal.
- 4 lbs chicken, cut into bite-sized chunks
- 3 pints grape tomatoes
- 5 red onions, cut into wedges
For the marinade:
- 4 lemons zested and juiced
- 4 tsp oregano
- 1-2 cups fresh mint, chopped
- 1/3 cup olive oil
- 1/4 cup honey
- kosher salt and pepper to taste
Mix together the lemon zest, lemon juice, olive oil, honey, mint, oregano, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken chunks and let it marinate for at least three hours.
When you are ready to cook, thread the marinated chicken onto skewers, alternating with tomatoes and onion.
Grill over coals or broil in a pan in the oven until slightly charred.
Serve with yogurt sauce.
- 32 oz full fat Greek yogurt
- 5 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1/4 cup lemon juice
- 3 Tbsp olive oil
- 1 tsp salt
- 1/2 tsp pepper
- fresh parsley or dill, chopped (optional)
Mix all ingredients together. Use for spreading on grilled meats, dipping pita or vegetables, etc.