Lamb Stir-Fry with Pomegranate and Yogurt

Lamb Stir-Fry with Pomegranate and Yogurt

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Vaguely Vietnamese Slow Cooker Pork Tacos

Spring seems like a good time to put away the slow cooker. Who wants beef stew when the daffodils are out?! (And by 'out,' I mean for sale at the local bodega.) But just when I thought I was done with this method of cooking for the season, I stumbled upon this recipe for Vietnamese tacos in the New York Times. Something about the Asian pear, cucumber, and cilantro slaw made it seem brighter and more spring-like so I gave it a try.

It's really good! To cut down on the weekday work, I used the Trader Joe's broccoli slaw shavings and just added the cucumber and Asian pear to the mix. When pulling the pork, I also tossed some of the extra fat.  It all came together very quickly, and if you make enough slaw, it feels like eating tacos and salad. Voila. Dinner is served. The flour tortillas were better with this, but the corn worked too.  Cheap, easy meal that I plan to put into serious rotation.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Lamb Stir-Fry with Pomegranate and Yogurt

About a year ago, I started an excel spreadsheet with a tab for what meals we are going to eat and a tab for the corresponding shopping list. It's nerdy, but it keeps me from running out to the store three times a day or from eating the same thing every week. The only complicated thing about it is that it has a column for me and Ryan and another column for the kids. Gasp! I know...we don't eat dinner together and we don't eat the same thing. Take that Parenting Magazine!

Before Xavier was born I thought I would be mixing flax seed into organic goat  yogurt and making elaborate kid-friendly vegetable dishes. Riiiight. My kids eat a diet of white rice, white pasta, white toast and milk. (Although they weirdly like salmon. Gag!) From my hushed conversations with other parents, it's safe to say that outside Park Slope, this is pretty typical. What's funny about it to me is that I don't care. I love food, new recipes, fresh spices, etc. so at first I found it strange that I was so unfazed by this behavior.  Last night, as I was unpacking the lunch dishes full of their uneaten vegetables, I realized why. I care more about not wasting food than I do about what they actually eat. Cheapskate! If they aren't going to eat crunchy spring asparagus and  marinated lamb, then I'm not going to waste it on them. So at 6 pm, the toddler dinner was served and eaten, and at 9 pm, Ryan and I sat down to this incredibly delicious, and surprisingly easy to throw together, dish of lamb, pomegranate, pistachios and yogurt.

I know...I know. It's a vicious cycle. If I don't serve it, they won't learn to learn to like it until they are ancient. But in the meantime, Ryan and I get all the leftovers.

Monday, April 13, 2015

Goodbye Winter Recipe: Beef Wellington

We kicked off spring this weekend in Central Park in style. Our picnicking skills were a bit rusty; there was a lot of chips and hummus and other standard fare (zzzzzz!), but the rose and cold beer was flowing. I spent hours just grinning stupidly, looking up and the sun and thanking the heavens that winter was finally over. Before I get lost in a frenzy of spring recipes, I want to share the most decadent recipe I made all winter - Beef Wellington.

On one particularly miserable March evening, Amie and I decided to have  a Dirty Dancing Dinner Party. This is a sign of true winter blues. It's not enough to just cook dinner, but you feel you need a theme...something to rally around, something to dress for, something to motivate you to log out of Netflix. We chose Dirty Dancing because Amie had a killer leotard to wear, we wanted to practice the "lift" and Patrick Swayze in a white tank top can warm up even the coldest of nights. Ha! I got a watermelon for the centerpiece, stuck a doll in the corner of my living room and cranked up the soundtrack. The food, however, was more complicated. The early 1960s aren't exactly the heyday of culinary innovation. Cream of mushroom soup anyone?

Beef Wellington is the exception. This is a ridiculously rich dish and I doubt I will make it more than once a year. I'm not sure the sauce is necessary, but Amie rocked the flambé. (Siberian brandy has some serious burning power)

So on that note, I say goodbye to winter. I'll take bland hummus in the park over filet mignon in the cold any day!

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Leek, Apple, Fennel Sausage and Goat Cheese Crepes

My friend Liz just had her third girl, Ciel, who is four weeks old and gorgeous. I figured this was the perfect time to show up at her house for an Easter feast...because who doesn't want to cook a holiday meal for a bunch of guests on three hours of sleep while juggling an infant?

My loud, jellybean-hyped family literally descended on her kitchen and ate her out of house and home last Saturday. She made absolutely delicious crepes. I have never been excited by crepes because they conjure up images of giant bottles of Nutella or greasy ham and cheese blobs. But Liz whipped up some crepes from a Crepe Cookbook that I'm seriously considering buying despite only being recently converted. The Leek, Apple, Fennel Sausage and Goat Cheese crepes might be the best thing I have eaten all winter. And it's been a long freakin' winter!

I'm not sure I could make the crepes as pretty at Liz did. I think giving her most recent daughters French names has infused her with Parisian culinary powers. I guess I'll just have to invite myself over again. Memorial Day crepes here we come!

Cookies trump crepes