We had a family party dinner at this restaurant called Smokey Tomato Cafe. Very cute place. It’s close to my husband’s family in Downers Grove, IL. The place is so tiny, they can only seat 20 people at a time, if that. So they restaurant was closed for our private party. Everything was amazing. You can tell everything is made with a lot of care.
We had lemon and rosemary roasted chicken. That was SO amazing. Then we had this spice rubbed flank steak thing that I was so curious about the rub. I had to make it! I asked the chef but he only said salt, pepper, garlic powder and cayenne pepper. And I could tell that the flavor is more complex than that. The 2 things I could tell from the rub are coriander and cumin. So the search began when I got home and I found this recipe.
I’m going to have to try this again when the weather is nice. I used my grill pan to cook the chicken. With the real grill, I’m sure it’ll taste even better.
On the dish that he served us had some charred tomatoes. So I did that as well! I did it quickly on the grill pan while the steak was resting. It got some of the beefy goodness that’s left on the pan. yummmm.
Don’t mind my earrings and a couple issues of Time magazine in the shot.
Per my recent post about Chioppino - totally unrelated to my chowder topic, here’s the yummy Choppiono from Anchor Oyster Bar in SF. I’ve made some chioppino before. The recipe is totally not real since I’ve done some research about this before. But regardless, the one I made tasted good. Just didn’t taste like THIS AMAZINGNESS POSTED HERE. Supposedly, it’s not on their regular menu. So even if you don’t see it on the menu, ask for it anyway. We had a light dinner between 3 girls. We ordered some oysters and a bowl of this (again) AMAZINGNESS. And we left happy. The rest of the stuff on the menu also looked really good!
This was my attempt for a potato dish to take to a Spuds and Suds Party, but I did not win. I lost to some sort of potato casserole with cream of mushroom soup…go figure.
Anyhoo. I’m happy I got to try this recipe. I usually don’t like chowder. Too much cream for me. But a couple weeks ago, I was in San Francisco visiting my very best friend. She took me to this place called Anchor Oyster Bar for their amazing Chioppino.(Fish/Seafood stew originated in SF area by Italian Americans - More on that next time) The restaurant is very smart. They have a dry erase board outside of the place and you can just write your name and your time of arrival on there. The guy will come out and call your name when your table is ready. It’s a tiny place! Probably 7 tables total, and some seatings at the bar. The set up is similar to another Oyster bar I’ve been to in Boston (Neptune Oyster Bar) But that place is a chaos town. People were getting pissy because of their system. Why am I talking about this right now? The food is amazing and totally worth the wait though.
Ok, back to the chowder! The guy at Anchor brought clam chowder out for everyone who’s waiting outside in chili SF weather. It was INCREDIBLE. I don’t know if I could eat a whole bowl of that. But those few bites that I had was divine.
So that inspired me to find a chowder recipe to enter to this spuds and suds party. On top of that I have a log of chorizo already in my fridge.
I’m not sure how many kinds of chorizo are there. I decided to stick with the one I have out of laziness. It worked though! The grease of chorizo turned the chowder to orange… Doesn’t matter! It tastes awesome. I let the chowder simmer on the stove longer than the recipe says. So it thickened a little more and I was able to spoon out some excess fat.
I just finished eating it for lunch today. Nomnomnom.
I’ve tried making this before, but failed. I didn’t have this AMAZING cooking rack. This evening, I couldn’t take it anymore. So I just went and got it just for this recipe.
When I didn’t have the cooking rack, they don’t crisp up. Well, the edges did a little bit, but I wouldn’t call them chips.
This time…nomnomnom. The cooling rack is 17” x 12” and it would be perfect for ONE large sweet potato. But I had 2, so they overlapped a bit and I had to use a rack from my roasting pan this time too.
I chopped a spring of rosemary. I didn’t know what “crush” means and how much I need. It smelled amazing. I LOVE rosemary.
This is a side for my Grill Pork Tenderloin with Mustard-Dill Sauce.
I was in the office when the timer beeped. I asked my husband to take it out of the oven. By the time I got to check on them, half of them were gone. Good result, I suppose.
I’ve been working all weekend. And it seems like the more I work, the more I want to cook. Found this recipe on Pinterest today. I usually eat cottage cheese and fruit for breakfast. Now that it’s getting cold, and nectarines or berries are hard to find (or too expensive), I MUST find an alternative.
I also been wanting to make my own granolar bars for so long, but the only one thing missing from my pantry is the rolled oats. FINALLY. I have all the ingredients. Granolar recipe will be next weekend’s goal. For now it’s this!
I mean, seriously, how can it be bad? It’s all the favorite things. Banana, chocolate chips, berries, oat, milk, BUTTER, brown sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and milk. Yes, I know.
These are the before and after pictures.
There is really no excuse to not make food! This literally took one minute. The longest part is actually opening the can of chick pea.
1 can of chick peas - rinsed
A couples dashes of apple cider vinegar, or lemon juice (that would make it 1.5 minute salad)
A couple dashes of extra virgin olive oil
A couple springs of parsley - tore in pieces
salt and pepper
Toss all of that together. And boom, lunch is ready.
My husband was out of town for a few days and before he left I didn’t get a chance to really make him a good meal. So today’s dinner was important to me.
The sauce is WONDERFUL. I used 8 oz of crimini mushrooms and 8 oz of white button mushrooms. I would totally make this mushroom red wine sauce for just a grilled piece of meat. I kind of slurped the sauce a couple times. Yeah, it’s that good.
I couldn’t find the tarragon in my grocery store today. I’ve never used tarragon before. But I imagined it to be some sort of mild herbs. So…with my strange logical system, I cooked the steak with garlic, rosemary and fresh oregano. When I was making the sauce, instead of tarragon, I used flat leaf Italian parsley. The parsley totally adds that crisp and fresh flavor.
Seriously though, just throw your steak on the grill and make this sauce. Nomnomnom.
My husband was happy to be home :)
First time making chicken wings! Um…I had no idea there is so much butter in the sauce.
A couple of things I would change in this recipe the next time I make it are:
Reduce the butter from 6 Tablespoons to just 4 (I only used 5 this time and it’s still too much) Or I’d double the amount of hot sauce for saucier wings.
Another thing would be to not steam the chicken. I think sautéing them in oil in medium to low heat would do the job.
I actually used siracha instead of hot sauce. I think the flavor is better - not too tangy. Even that, I added a couple teaspoons of ketchup in there to round out the flavor.
Having the leftover for lunch today. Can’t wait!
And I did use the wing tips to make chicken stock just like Alton Brown says. He’d be proud.
So, I got a new job and that has been taking away time from cooking. Boo. Ok, maybe I have been cooking, but less. Just no time to post.
I grew up eating lots and lots of drumsticks. My mom loves the breasts, my dad loves the thighs, I love drumsticks. Happy family. More of the reason to love drumsticks is that they are SO cheap. Usually it’s $1.79 or somewhere around there. On sale, you can probably get them for $0.99 if not cheaper. Nomnomnom.
I combined 2 recipes together. The skinnytaste one for the sauce and another one from Foodnetwork for how to cook the chicken. They turned out crispy and awesome.
Here’s how you cook the chicken:
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Set a wire rack on a rimmed baking sheet. Put the drumsticks on the rack and season both sides generously with salt and pepper. Bake 30 minutes; flip the drumsticks and continue baking until golden and crisp, about 30 more minutes.
Meanwhile, make the sauce!
I also made sticky rice in the microwave. 1 Portion of rice, 2 portion of water. Put it in microwave for 6 minutes. Stir. Put it back for 6 more minutes. Let it sit and covered for 6 more minutes. And it’s time to eat!
I also made sautéed kale, Thai style.
2TBSP of oyster sauce, 2-3 cloves of garlic, 1 big bunch of kale - chopped.
Heat up the oil, and sautéed the garlic until golden brown. Add the kale, and the oyster sauce. Stir until kale is lightly wilt. Don’t over cook it. NOMNOMNOMNOM!
I save all my citrus peels whenever I use them for juice. A lot of recipes call for lemon/orange/lime zest. And this way it’s so easy to zest/grate too.
Well, first they were supposed to be be blueberry muffins. I thought I had some frozen ones in the freezer. My husband eats them as if they were candies. So I guess he did that. No more blueberries!! Good thing I got strawberries for my weekday breakfasts (low fat cottage cheese, sliced strawberries, honey and walnuts - SO GOOD! and good for you)
Also, I thought we had regular oatmeal, but that’s also out. He bought a new box for his breakfast. It has almond slices and raisins and even some granola.
I improvised! and they turned out delicious. They would have been a bit prettier with blueberries. But these are good, so nobody would care how they look anyway. Am I right? Or Am I right?
My lovers. Mint, oregano, Italian flat leaf parsley, German thyme, Thai holy basil (I’m not sure why it’s named that way), rosemary and sweet basil. Oh and mint and oregano came back from last winter. Magical!