1/9 food finds

while at the farmers market and out and about we found a few fun things to try or think about trying.

Root veggies are the spotlight at the farmers market this week   

I bought some pretty pink and blue potatoes…these are colored clear through so they lose their color less than those with just a colored skin

It’s been cold so the avocado su ply train is getting a bit week.    

Tiny iceberg lettuces!


Assorted cute little lettuces

And a Penzeys trip  


My penzeys haul this week… The Turkish oregano was free (coupon)


Macaron for Jim at lemonade

Buffalo milk butter at whole foods


Cognac barrels!  I already have the bourbon barrel version at home waiting to be savored

Needed to try my Singapore spice from penzeys so made a sort of Singapore noodle


And some tofu lettuce cups



Yup, I Tried To Make Pupusas And Curtido with an ensalada rusa on the side

I have always wanted to try this and the Gluten Free & Easy magazine (from the editors of vegetarian times) had a recipe…and as I hunted for a side, ensalada rusa kept popping up as a popular Central American dish   

First the cabbage is chopped and carrots shredded and onions sliced.  Boiling water poured over all

Drained the lot and poured boiling vinegar, sugar, salt and oregano over the top and put it aside


The ensalada rusa is boiled eggs, potatoes, and mayo…plus..


Cooked beets.  Every recipe said red beets which makes the whole dish pink…but I only had golden ones so that’s what I used

Pupils a dough is super easy…masa, baking soda, salt, cumin, and water

16 balls with holes that get stuffed with corona cheese or beans


I thought I took a pic of the frying version…but nope…so they got fried in my cast iron, placed in the overnight at 230 until I was ready to serve

The hit sauce is hidden there…just puréed and simmered dry guajillo chili, fresh tomato, garlic, broth, and that’s it    

And here’s my source


New Year’s Day food

new years day is usually about snacks and the inevitable greens, sauerkraut, and black eyed peas.

First is a beautiful pile of a new rendition of one of my favorite appetizers.  Peppers stuffed with goat cheese, mint and cucumber.  The original recipe was for peppadews.  At Xmas I found jarred cherry peppers which were nice because of the subtle heat…and then for New Years I used jarred piquillos which were nice and gave a whole new flavor and texture (plus a wide stuffing space)   

The simmered sauerkraut hit the pan–this likes at least a three hour simmer and is even better with smoked pork or nice German sausages in the mix.  A whole bottle of dry white wine goes in, a little sugar and salt, and juniper berries, a few cloves and a few peppercorns.  A bay leaf.  This year I added some fresh thyme and Rosemarie…all of the latter to be removed before serving 

Deviled eggs!   Using vlassic new spice dills and my grandmas spice blend in top of the usual suspects of mayo, mustard and celery seed



Leftover cheese hunks from the night before (ps..I like every Cheese that wicked river makes particularly the steakhouse)…chips and Suzuki crackers and a nice dip with an avocado mixed in (try this sometime…it adds a layer of creamy flavor without distracting form the dips other flavors)

Dinner is the summer kraut, simmered kale and mushrooms in broth, and some smoky black eyed peas.


Shakshouka gets Italian spice

I made this the same night I made the spice blend…quick easy weeknight dish.

Into the pot goes canned tomatoes (1 roasted and crushed and 1 chopped)…a can of limas and a can of cannelini  .. Some low sodium chicken less chicken flavored broth and a touch of water and I let it simmer and reduce   

Omg…don’t talk about the lid of my pot–this is my favorite everyday pot and whatever…it gets a periodic scour otherwise just a quick wash

Anyway…make some wells, add the eggs…these happened to be from my friends hens in her own yard given to me the day they were laid

Cover them up and about 7/8 minutes later they are perfect


Pair with some gluten free focaccia from Palm Springs Thursday night street fair with an olive oil and balsamic dip

A quick salad with evoo and tarragon white balsamic


The vinegar is from Palm Springs too 

Nye Eats

Looks like I got more booze shots than food.

It was a whirlwind…home from work at 6:05 and guests at 7

A cheese array and selection of crackers both regular and gluten free.  A cheese fondue which you see melting and gluten free baguettes, mushrooms, carrots, tomatoes and cornichons, a homemade dip with penzeys Tuscan sunset….shrimp and homemade cocktail sauce…and voila!  I didn’t get to my other planned dishes but this worked  

The plan was to play Game of Thrones Risk but devolved into a couple random card games and idle chatter

Maria brought us a nice pink hello kitty sparkler which I paired with a splash of Pama for Maria and Jim 


While Ryan and I killed two bottles of Take the Black stout in my new Game of Thrones steins…chased by the enjoy after 12/26/15 seen below

Then Ryan and I had jalapeño margarita with the most awesome mix ever! And we used a reposado  


Yes, besides the game of thrones steins, everything else was drank from Barbie glasses

That sparkling Syrah was very very nice!


The subsequent pictures have been censored.

My great grandma’s spice blend

I made this year as part of my Christmas gifts to family.  This is a concoction that my great grandmother used to make and use mixed into the egg dip when she fried chicken.  After all the chicken was ready to go, she would fry the egg dip for her grandchildren to eat while she cooked (and later, this great grandchild who spent hours in the kitchen cooking with her).

The color and taste will never be exact because decades have passed and things change…this batch was a giant purchase from  Penzeys and she always used Spice Islands.  The exact ingredients have been hotly debated but I have transcribed my version from one that she wrote—however I think she took some liberties….(this is the same woman who taught me to cook by measuring things by her hand/eyebal).

I don’t make fried chicken but I love this on fried eggs and in deviled eggs (I assume that’s the mental connection with eggs).

She used to make it and give it away freely but in today’s dollars from penzeys it ran me about 17.65 a jar to make.

Below you see another actual mise en place from me which is rare.


It’s equal parts of onion and garlic and thyme and cumin and marjoram and more for a total of thirteen ingredients.  The mace and cloves need to be half portions though.

It all gets combined


Jarred in handy penzeys jars

And labelled!


I also dated the jars so it doesn’t get stale dated …however, after she died, I nursed my last jar for years and it still tastes like childhood:-)

Gluten free gnocchi with cannelini and chanterelles

continuing my holiday catch up Posts from the past two weeks ….  This was Christmas week.  I actually took the time for a mise en place as I prepped my gnocchi.  This gluten free gnocchi I buy from Amazon in a four pack which is fare less expensive than the gluten free one at sprouts or whole foods as is the olive oil that I have on Amazon subscription.  

I sautéed the elephant garlic, beans and chanterelles in olive oil with the penzeys pasta sprinkle spice mix

Boiled my gnocchi


Added the garlic greens

Added a quicks salad with olive oil and balsamic

And I had a quick weeknight dinner with minimal pots to wash

Gyoro-gyoro round two

my mother was in town two weeks ago and we usually hit sushi during her trips since she lives in the sushi desert…gyoro gyoro is a place we have tried in Palm Springs and now they have a location near us (they have 150 locations in Tokyo).  They have a great happy hour DAILY until 6:30 and a yelp coupon for 5 bucks off EVERY 25 spent.   So we raced home to pick her up and hit happy hour pricing . Gyoro-gyoro

Saki for her


Echigo gluten free rice beer.

Glutinous Sapporo for me


Shishito pepper with miso glaze (on the side for gluten man)

White fish and sauce on the sauce—loses its charm with no pretty presentation huh?


Yellowtail habanero sauce on side

Yakitori mushrooms


Yakitori Japanese sausages which are super tasty

Very nice roll wrapped in Cucs and gluten free…Monrovia roll


The sushi platter is on the happy hour menu and we got my mother to eat the shrimp and suck the head in pure Asian style

Three hand rolls happy hour special


Yellowtail belly

Avocado roll


These are balls wrapped in rice….they have salmon and pickled plum! Oginiri?  That’s not right but close…

The price of doing this late is I forget what foods we actually had (especially if I didn’t order them)

El patron-tofu burrito and margs 

I’m still playing catch up.  My mom came for a visit and wanted Mexican so we passed on the Friday ritual of el Queso Grande and went to Salsa and Beer who had a wait at 7 pm on a Tuesday so off to El patron .  Who tends to have great margaritas and sketchy service and used to have an extensive veg menu.  About a year ago they revised the menu and rebranded to become a gastro-cantina and elimates the awesome cauliflower relleno ….but they have a tofu burrito that rocks.


The ultimate Cadillac 

Mango on fire!


My mother with the salt less house marg on the rocks


Who can resist made to order table side guac?!?

My surprisingly good tofu burrito…they have a few dishes that you have choice of protein which includes a tofu option


Huevos rancheros

A quesadilla with fillings that I have forgotten


One of our last 2015 meals.:-)

Fun food finds 1/2/16

 We were Santa Monica farmers market bound today and since winter is usually bland I wasn’t taking any pics until I ran into this this thing so I started with the food pics….

Having no idea what it was, I bought some.  Wikipedia and several sites have cleared up my lack of knowledge…Mountain yams are a Asian tuber that turn into goo if you grate and get mucilaginous plus have an itchy skin that needs soaked in water and vinegar to neutralize…sounds like a winner here :-p


Kohlrabi are also in season as I found baby ones last weekend

Sun chokes have been about for a month or so but few in attendance this week–one vendor said the ground was too frozen to harvest  


Sweet limes…which I always look at but never buy….and they aren’t green!

Unhusked walnuts which I haven’t seen in person since I used to have to collect them from my grandpas yard


Mushrooms!  Including white truffle which I passed on hoping for black truffle soon…but I picked up some hedgehogs


My favorite cheese vendor provided me with a raw 1year aged white cheddar


Jim found giant macaron that are gluten free at the newly opened Lemonade

And I picked up the foodies coloring book at Barnes and noble!