The BTL’s weren’t great… putting them in the Panini maker wasn’t the best idea (hot, wilted lettuce=not so good). But, the potato salad was excellent. Next time we’d reduce the dill (we’re not huge dill fans), but the vinegar and lemon really add a nice kick to the potatoes. Mmmm.
Creamy Potato Salad with Lemon and Fresh Herbs
Makes 8 servings. Recipe from Bon Appetit.
3 pounds baby red potatoes
3 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
3/4 cup mayonnaise
3 medium green onions, thinly sliced
1 celery stalk, cut into 1/3-inch cubes
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh dill
11/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel
Bring potatoes to boil in large pot of water. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 17 minutes. Drain; let stand until cool enough to handle, about 20 minutes.
Cut potatoes into 3/4-inch pieces. Place 1 layer of potatoes in large bowl; sprinkle with some of vinegar and salt and pepper. Continue layering potatoes with vinegar, salt, and pepper. Add all remaining ingredients; toss. Season with salt and pepper. DO AHEAD Can be made 8 hours ahead. Cover and chill.
I’m hoping our run of bad eats is over. This salad was a refreshing treat! Plus healthy to boot!
Farmers Market Salad with Fried Shallot
Recipe from Epicurious, with adjustments.
1/2 pound shallots (we used more like 2 shallots)
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil for frying (ok more like 1/2 cup)
6 ounces of whatever green leaf you like best (we used red romaine and baby spinach)
1 tablespoon white-wine vinegar
sea salt to taste
Cut shallots into 1/8-inch-thick slices. Don’t cry.
In a heavy 10-inch skillet cook shallots in oil over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until golden. (The recipe says 15-20 minutes. Our shallots burned after 5. Don’t let them burn, or they will be extremely bitter. Better to undercook them than overcook them!)
With a slotted spoon transfer shallots to paper towels to drain and season with salt. Reserve 3 tablespoons oil for dressing salad and cool shallots to room temperature. (Don’t forget to save the oil!! That’s the best part of this salad!)
To make candied pecans, toss about 1/2 stick of butter and 1/2 cup of sugar into a small saucepan, along with a pinch of salt, some cinnamon, and a dash of ground ginger. Add pecans and stir until melted. Pour onto foil and let cool. Delicious!
Just before serving, in a large bowl toss together greens, reserved oil, vinegar, and sea salt. Sprinkle shallots and pecans over salad.
After a week of iffy food, who would’ve thunk that the end of the week leftovers meal would be the best one? Go figure!
Carbonara ala Leftovers
Basically this recipe was the same as this one, with a few small changes.
- Spinach instead of peas. We added about half a bag of baby spinach (leftover from our Roasted Veggie Salad) right at the end of the cooking, so it just slightly wilted.
- Added a few sprigs of fresh thyme in with the onions and bacon.
Carbonara is a great leftovers recipe. As long as you have a few slices of bacon, eggs, and some white wine lying around, you can do it, and throw in whatever else you have left in the fridge. Like I said, carbonara ala leftovers!
We also made a leftovers bruschetta, where we basically tossed the leftover veggies from the same Roasted Veggie Salad with some Parmesan, balsamic, and seasoning. Should have realized that if they didn’t taste good the first time they wouldn’t taste good the second time either. Oh well!
Some weeks, we do good (see: last week). Everything we cook is delicious and perfectly seasoned and nice looking to boot.
Other weeks, not so good. What sounds like a good recipe sometimes turns out to be bland, boring, or just plain bad. This was one of those weeks.
Black Bean Burgers with Salsa and Avocado.
Good concept, not so good execution. The patties had virtually no flavor, and they were practically impossible to cook. The recipe is here if you really want to try them. I’d suggest tripling the spices and seasonings at the very least. Also baking them might be a better solution vs. sautÃ©ing them, if anything just to avoid having to flip them. Again, it’s an intriguing concept, but just needs a little (ok, a lot) of refinement.
Roasted Balsamic Vegetable and Pecan Salad
Again, just a bit boring. It needed more of a dressing than just the little juice left from the veggies. We also made the mistake of adding Chinese Eggplant, which has a very tough and almost bitter tasting skin. Recipe here if you’re interested. It is a healthy meal, but needs some more work before we’ll make it again.
Bobby Flay, this time, you’ve not done so great. Maybe because we didn’t grill it, or because we used frozen salmon, or maybe because we used canned artichoke hearts, but this one was not so great. I liked it a bit more than Taylor did… the olive marinade was STRONG but had potential. The artichokes had potential as well… they just weren’t fabulous. The salmon burgers we made last week would have been a much better use for this salmon!
Oh well. You win some, you lose some.