Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Meal Plan #7

This meal plan got a late start due to my preparations for a mini-Oscar-mostly-foodie party last night. I lost track of the day and ended up having to do my planning Monday morning instead. The Oscar/foodie party was a great success, at least food-wise. Party-wise, it ended at 8PM when I had to take D home to bed. Apparently, at least according to the clerk at Safeway, all the good stuff happened in the first half-hour anyway, so I didn't miss anything.

Thanks to our delicious food last night, I have a new cookbook on order: Whitewater Cooks at Home. Actually, I have TWO cookbooks on order, because I mistakenly ordered Whitewater Cooks at first, not knowing there were actually two very similar cookbooks by the same author. Oh well, if cookbook 1 is as good as cookbook 2, I won't be sorry. We enjoyed a veggie plate with fantastic miso-sesame dip, caramelized onion and blue cheese tarts, goat cheese terrine, and dates, stuffed with goat cheese and wrapped with basil and prosciutto. All from this amazing cookbook. Every page looked completely unique and delicious. When I come across a cookbook that has ideas in it I've never seen before, I can't resist buying it.

My own contribution to the meal (my sweet miniature dessert) was a hit. I opted for the Caramel Carmenitas, little tartlets filled with caramel pecan buttercream. Oh. My. God. Imagine a tart filled with creamy, nutty, sweet silk. That is something I will definitely make again. I'd share the recipe, but it's very long, so will provide it only if asked. It took me two tries to get the caramel right, but even the first, botched try tasted delicious, and I formed that batch into caramel chews, so it wouldn't go to waste. I have a long-standing love affair with the Bon Ton in Vancouver, and have long considered it a goal to recreate some of those amazing silky pastries. This dessert could have been a Bon Ton confection.

Thanks to my sister's intention to stop in for dinner on Monday night, on their way to B.C., I planned a steak dinner and pulled out the last of my locally grown chanterelle mushrooms for risotto. Thanks to the charming weather we experienced here in Saskatchewan yesterday, the roads were all closed, and they didn't make it. We very much enjoyed our meal of the most beautiful filets mignon from my dad's beef, seasoned only with Kosher salt and smoked pepper, chanterelle mushroom risotto, and roasted Brussels sprouts and asparagus. Responses from my diners (hubbie and D) were (hubbie): "Ooh. Roasted Brussels sprouts. Me likey!" and (D): "Steak! Steak! Steak!" We managed to control ourselves and sample only one pastry each, in an effort to leave some for my sister (who is also a fan of the Bon Ton). Sister is arriving right away for lunch. Hopefully the leftovers will be as enjoyable as they were last night.

So the rest of the week's meal plans are as follows (sourced mostly from Moosewood's Simple Suppers):

Baked tofu (marinated with soy sauce, sesame oil, ginger and garlic)
(Not-so)Hot and Sour Stirfry (the recipe calls for packaged coleslaw mix, but I have both green and purple cabbage to use, and frozen organic green beans—Canadian grown—from Costco, which I decided to use in the recipe instead of buying 'fresh' imported ones)
Egg Noodles

Fish with Grits and Greens (this one calls for catfish, but I'll be using the pickerel in my freezer). Hubbie came home from grocery shopping last week with collard greens, so I'll be using them in the most traditional way. I'll be using the last of my smoked cheddar in the grits, which I think will be tasty.

Hubbie is away during supper at a work event, and we're heading out of town first thing Friday morning, so I'm going to pull a container of leftover lamb and kidney bean stew from the freezer for me and D to enjoy.

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