Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Occupy Our Food Supply - Buffalo's Eat At Home Create & Resist Challenge

As part of my continuing conversation on food ethics, access, and security, I took part in the global challenge on February 27th, of actively engaging in the food system and making it mine. The challenge I set up through Occupy Our Food Supply specifically for Buffalo was:

I encourage you not to eat out today, Occupy your kitchen. Have an eat-in with your family and friends. Engage in a conversation about food, where it comes from, how it got to your table, and what the future of food looks like to you. Take the time, make something not from a box or a can. Sit and enjoy your meal without the distractions of tv, phones, or computers. Think about what you can do starting right now, in making a difference in your home, your neighborhood, your city, your state, your country, your world.

So we Occupied our head space, physical space, each other's space. We read, did homework, cooked, and got together to eat dinner like we do every night. 
We enjoyed a meal made from scratch. The pierogies were made the day before during another one of my cooking classes. 
The floss sauerkraut came from the Famous Horseradish stand at the Broadway Market. The sausages of course were polish and fresh from Spar's European Sausage Shop.
The cream sauce was minced garlic, grated parmesan, cream, and butter. All but the parmesan was local.
I encourage you to Occupy your Kitchen every meal you are able. Talk about your food, have a relationship with your food sources and "Think about what you can do starting right now, in making a difference in your home, your neighborhood, your city, your state, your country, your world."

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Persephone's Festival of Flowers Dinner, Wine, and Cakes

Today is roughly the start date of the ancient week long Greek Festival of Flowers honoring Persephone. So to honor one of our house "saints" we had wine and spring fruits and vegetables and an early spring hen and cakes to celebrate.
Place chicken in sauce and marinate for no less than three hours in the refrigerator. This vegan and gluten-free Peanut Lime sauce came from the Culinary Kiosk. Bake at 380 degrees for 45 minutes in a covered dish.
Small chop scallions, zucchini, and sweet pepper.

Gently wash the mushrooms and set aside for when it's time to plate your meal.
Stir fry the vegetables five minutes before the chicken is pulled out of the oven. Turn off the heat and cover. When you pull the chicken out, uncover and let sit for one minute. Re-heat the stir fry and toss in the blueberries.
 You can serve this with mashed potatoes, rice, or creamy smashed cauliflower. Bob and I shared Twisted's Old Vine Zinfandel, an outstanding pairing and a nod to Dionysus on a night of playing with the the ancient Greek myths.

The crocuses we found at the Lexington Co-op were closed up tight and deep midnight purple. By the time dinner was served they swirled open to reveal their deep golden throats.
The yellow paper whites were sweet and friendly.

Dolci's vegan cupcakes were our cakes for Persephone. Each a sweet reminder of youthful exuberance, wrapped in tissue thin paper; brimming over their edges with light creamy sweetness.
S'mores - Fluffy mallow topping on a ginger graham cake with a surprise chocolate center and graham and chocolate on top.

Almond Joy - the top was removed and the coconut frosting was thickly layered and the cap popped back on. Drizzled with chocolate and crusted with almonds, it was quickly devoured.
 Oreo - A cupcake version of the cookie!
Chocolate Peanut Butter - The perfect blend of two favorite flavors in one sweet treat.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Grinch Dip Roast

Yet another delicious crock pot recipe! This one is an eleven hour low heat roast with vegetables. The Grinch dip melted in from above and the vegetable juices soaked in from below. 

The Grinch dip is a blend of cottage cheese, plain yogurt, garlic, scallions, parsley, spinach, parmesan cheese, romano cheese, sweet bell peppers, salt and pepper. Layered thickly on top of a three pound roast which is surrounded by 1/2 cup minced portobello mushrooms, 4 stalks diced celery, and 4 thinly sliced carrots, and 1 1/2 cup vegetable stock. Serve this with Lundberg Wild Blend rice and Coleman's Mustard
Ridiculously delicious!

Monday, February 13, 2012

WJ Morrissey Irish Pub and Fish & Chips

Do you know what that is? 

That is a plate of the finest fish and chips in Buffalo.  

WJ Morrissey batters their fillet in Harp and the fluffiest batter and serves it with chips (french fries) and Mike's outstanding cole slaw. Mike's slaw has very finely slivered and chopped cabbage, carrots, and radishes and what my husband described as a bold zesty mix of mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and perhaps Coleman's Mustard. I was pretty sad to slide all of that luscious smelling slaw onto Bob's plate. Can't stand cole slaw, but this, this smelled and looked so good I was sorely tempted to test my body's ability to digest egg whites. As it was I felt done in by the teensy amount of yolk in the batter, but sometimes, and probably quite foolishly, I say "Egg allergy be damned! I want me some of that!"

I opted out of the traditional dunking of tartar sauce and went for malt vinegar and Colman's Mustard and the powerful spice knocked my nose askew! This is mustard and for those of you who think the watery yellow glop in a yellow bottle is mustard, I challenge you to try this. One tablespoon is generally enough for a whole fillet. This is the same mustard I use when making my homemade mac&cheese. Powerful stuff!

WJ Morrissey Irish Pub on Urbanspoon

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Taco Burgers

Mix two packets of Simply Organic's Southwest Mix of your choice with 1 cup of warm water. Soak pre-made patties in the liquid for at least two hours.

Broil or grill until well done. Serve with all the fixings you would normally have for your tacos like guacamole, salsa, veggies, cheese, etc.

 This variety pack of organic beer is produced by Peak Organic Brewing Company in Portland, Maine. Each style was very clean flavored and delicious to the last drop.

Serve on sandwich thins with veggies, salad, chips, and a tall glass of beer or Spritzer.

Monday, February 6, 2012

Lamb Shanks and Potatoes in Onion Soup

Layer in a crockpot lamb shanks from Spars, whole well washed potatoes, two chopped onions, and 3 cups stock. Set on high and serve 5 hours later.
There is a restaurant here in Buffalo that used to be the go to place for families. A diner that catered to everyone, not just the beer drinking tv watching crowd.

They did some major remodeling that did away with all of that including it's outstanding floor staff and change ups in the kitchen meant less of the favorites, like the lamb shank.

Although the lamb shank was done in cacciatore style there, I went for a simple stripped down version, which pleased my six year old to no end as she just loves onion soup.

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Marinated Chops, Salad, Armenian Rice Pilaf, Fingerling Potatoes

Marinate chops for 2 hours in Sesame oil, balsamic vinegar, minced garlic, and juiced ginger. Pan fry in a bit of olive oil until deep brown. Don't over cook these! Internal temp - 165 degrees.
The salad is well washed baby spinach, sweet red peppers, avocados, and organic Bunashimeji Brown Beech mushrooms
Basic Armenian Rice Pilaf:
2 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup orzo pasta
1/2 cup diced onion
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 cup uncooked white rice
2 cups veggie broth

The high in potassium fingerling potatoes from Wegman's grocers were boiled and served with whipped butter.