Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Nachos for dinner

Every now and then I get the worst craving for nachos, usually during Monday Night Football or on snow days.

And tonight for dinner.

I made chili-roasted broccoli & grape tomato nachos, with garlic and a mix of cheddar and mozzarella cheese.

And when I make them myself, for just me, I can make them how I like them - with a very thin & even layer of cheese over all the chips, a layer of roasted veg, a sprinkle of cheese over the top, and the whole thing dusted with chili powder. Then baked until the cheese is melted and the outer edge chips are almost toasted.

Now, I can't help trying to eat them all, but inevitably I make more than I can really eat. Which is fine, because leftover nachos are like leftover pizza: even better cold and eaten in the morning for breakfast!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

A nice read for a rainy night

For dinner tonight I sauteed some tiny little gnocchi and made a little tomato sauce with garlic and smoked paprika to go with it. I had a small glass of wine and sat down with my copy of Simca's Cuisine.

I love this cookbook, which is why I permanently "borrowed" it from La Maman. This cookbook reads marvelously, it's as though Simca (Simone Beck) is talking to you directly: a lovely French Tantine who explains what her "trucs" are and encourages you to make a mayonnaise and to go for brisk winter walks through the woods.

The nice thing about this particular cookbook is that it is arranged by menu, rather than by recipe, which takes the recipe mix-and-match conundrum off the table so to speak. I admit to being horrible at menu planning. It stresses me out.

Simca prefaces each menu with a story and with tips ("conseils") before giving you the recipes and there is a section at the end of the book with a collection of basic recipes. I read about making baked grated apples, and a chocolate cake with whiskey and raisins, and about terrines and cheeses and wine.


I am ready for it to be cool enough to really start cooking again!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Down Cape Eat-a-Thon Part 1

When: Friday night

Where: Blue Moon Bistro - a place Pam recommended when I told her I was going "down Cape" for the weekend.

(oh lordy, these photos are craaaaaaaaaaaaaaaap. I apologize. I don't know what happened. Well I do know what happened - I wanted to eat more than I wanted to take arty photos! Enjoy anyway!)

French Onion Soup and Duck Liver Mousse

Beet Salad and Caesar Salad

Shrimp Scampi and Clams Linguini

Butternut Squash Ravioli and Cedar Planked Salmon

Profiteroles & Creme Brulee

An overview:

I had the Duck Liver mousse with a gorgeous wine gelee on top. The mousse was lovely and soft, which paired nicely with the strong wine gelee. The only thing I might do differently would be to serve it with slight less hard toasts. They really were a teeth-breaking kind of hard and I just ended up eating the mousse with a fork.

For dinner I had the shrimp scampi with linguine. The shrimp were perfectly cooked, very shrimpy-winey-garlicky tasting which is exactly how I always want scampi to taste but it hardly ever does. The shrimp is served over linguine, a little handful of noodles which was another plus. It is a small pet peeve of mine when scampi is served with 5 dinky little shrimp over 10 pounds of oil & minced garlic slathered noodles that have been over-cooked within an inch of their sadly flaccid selves.

Then for dessert the Evil Twin and I split the Profiteroles. The good: the profiteroles were filled with the most delicious vanilla gelato from Ciao Bella. The bad: the pastry shells tasted as though they'd been frozen for too long or something.

Of course since I love custard of any kind, I spooned up a few tastes of the creme brulee and I can say that it was very delicious.

All in all I would say that the Blue Moon Bistro was a hit. The service was great and the food was fresh and delicious. I know that the folks I went with said they'd go back with others and the nice thing is that it is a year-round restaurant which is not always the norm "down Cape". (Wellllll, I think they might be closed in March?? Call ahead.)

Still to come: Down Cape Eat-a-Thon Part 2..... Stay tuned!

Monday, September 7, 2009

Happy Labor Day

I am currently on vacation "Down Cape"

Just so you know, I have eaten the equivalent of a first-graders weight in food and also have gotten so blind drunk that I had 12 hours of bed spins.

True story.

So until I can sort out all the photos & words, let me just leave you with this: I ate a chocolate bag.

Yep, a bag made out chocolate and filled with brownie, banana, ice cream, and chocolate sauce. It was incredible.

Diet? What diet?

Happy Labor Day everyone!