Saturday night – 01/23/2016

Too be honest I am often at a loss for what to make for our Saturday night gathering. We have a lot of favorites, and they get a good rotation, however I really try not to do the same thing all the time. I asked one of our regulars what I should make and they suggested some Indian food. Here’s what I came up with…

Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans, and Chickpeas Curry
Tandoori Chicken
Basmati Rice

Chocolate Chip Cookies

Notes under the cut

Saturday night – 01/30/2016

A certain almost 14-year-old whispered in my ear last week that she would like pancakes for dinner this week. This is no surprise because pancakes for dinner is her usual request. In any event I am happy to oblige because, honestly, pancakes are my favorite for any meal.

4 batches of Alton Brown’s “Instant Pancakes” with real maple syrup and “pancake” syrup
Baked Ham
Watermelon, papaya, pineapple and Fuji apple fruit salad

Yellow cake with mixed-fruit filling and a simple buttercream frosting
Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Ice Cream

Notes under the cut

Slow-Cooker Barley & Lentil Soup

[Barley and Lentil Soup]The new year always brings an onslaught of “healthy eating” recipes. I suppose I’m not different as this soup is fairly healthy. Lentils and barley both provide a decent amount of fiber and carrots are good for you, right. I use a reduced sodium broth base and then add salt at the end via sriracha and/or a bit of Parmesan cheese.

As an aside, I like the concept of a slow cooker however in practice most of the recipes finish too quickly for them to be practical for me on a weeknight. When I work from home though I can take 10 minutes mid-morning, toss some ingredients together and then have dinner ready when I want to eat.
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Watercress and Endive Salad with Pistachios and Dried Cranberries

[Watercress and Endive Salad with Pistachios and Dried Cranberries]Our Christmas Eve dinner usually includes a plated courses in place of the family-style dinners we do for Saturday night. While the prep work during the day can be a bit annoying the salad course goes from component pieces to finished product in less than 5 minutes. When the plating starts folks know we’re about to get serious with the eating and find their places around the table.

This year used a recipe from The Way We Cook by Sheryl Julian and Julie Riven as a starting point. I’ve tweaked the ingredient list a bit and written up the instructions in my own words. Enjoy.

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