Smoky Polenta with Soy, Butter and Mushroom

SmokyPolentaWithButterSoyandMushroom

Fresh polenta is one of my favorite things. For those who aren’t familiar, when you make fresh polenta, it’s basically a thick corn meal porridge – and an excellent vehicle for way too much cheese. I have your attention, yes?

Meaty, intense porcini mushrooms are great with this. The original recipe called for fresh mushrooms but David mixed it up with some kale for greenery instead and we were not sorry at all. Also, adding in the smoked cheddar was key – I know there wasn’t bacon in this, but you really could’ve fooled me.

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Black Lentil & Roasted Cauliflower Salad

BlackLentilAndCauliflowerSalad

I hesitate to call this a salad. This is mostly because I had this one summer long ago where I ate only (not awesome) salads. Ever since, whenever you say the word, all I can think of is a wilty pile of lettuce with carrots on it, dressed with ancient low-fat Italian dressing and my hangry tears.

(Seriously, though. Recently I was ordering lunch and they were out of all sides but salad I really thought I was going to cry. AND IT WASN’T EVEN THE MAIN PART OF THE MEAL. Which is to say, 10+ years later and I still have, ahem, issues)

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Albóndigas with Bitter Greens

albodingaswithbittergreens

Do you like … meatballs?

How about GIANT meatballs? (there’s no way this doesn’t end up sounding like one big double entendre, right? Hmm.) Big, luscious, meaty balls bursting with the flavors of Mexico?

I’m glad I, ahem, have your attention.

Truly, though, I didn’t ever really think to make a Mexican meatball. It’s always been a much more Italian undertaking for me. That thing with loads of parmesan and a super zesty tomato sauce. Maybe some spice.

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Smoked Salmon Corn Chowder

Smoked Salmon Corn Chowder

So, through a series of events, we’re currently without a furnace. This wasn’t a problem until this week when the sun disappeared, the temperature dropped like a very cold rock, and we’ve been huddling by the fireplace ever since.

This is the thing that you eat by said fireplace. Not to brag, but since David made it, not me, I’ve gotta say – it’s the corn chowder all the other corn chowders aspire to be. Northwesty style! (Salmon in everything, please!)

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Crab Salad on Buttered Rye

crabsaladonbutteredrye

So, there are a few things lately that we should’ve written up, but this one was too pretty to resist. I mean, those gorgeous heirloom tomatoes with the sunset coloring. The delicate ovals of red peppers. The snowy white crab studded with pickled green beans. Wait, what? You didn’t catch all those details from my super skilled cell phone photography? Shocking!

Luckily, in addition to being a looker (in person, anyway), this dish has a lot of other things going for it. It’s simple. It’s lightning fast. Continue reading

Dal Makhani with Perfect Couscous

DalMakhaniWithPerfectCousCous

Okay, we realize we’re mixing our food origins. You know. India. Northern Africa. But, thing is, we didn’t have any rice and the fine folks at America’s Test Kitchen taught us how to make non-mushy/stuck together couscous last night, so we had to try it out. Had to. With dire necessity!

Turns out, the couscous is such a good idea. You toast it up beforehand to deepen the flavor, then add a lot less liquid than people usually say and the result is a perfect, loose, toasty-tasting couscous. Which, coincidentally, goes really well with the dal even though, you know, people don’t usually do that.

And a word on said dal: you can make this with a little butter or a lot of butter. Continue reading

Moroccan Lamb Meatloaf

MoroccanLambMeatloafSo, I’m not sure how many of you knew about my meatloaf obsession, but if you didn’t, let’s just say this: I’ve eaten a fair amount of meatloaf in my time. *cough cough vast understatement* That in mind, this meatloaf is far and away the best one I’ve ever had. Like, we’re talking easily! Hands down! For super realsies times infinity!

See, the thing is, it’s surprisingly easy for things to go awry in a meatloaf. Too greasy, too bready/spongy or just flat-out dried out. It’s always so sad, because: meatloaf, guys! It could be the most wonderful thing you’ve ever eaten in loaf form!

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