Solstice! and Menu of the week Dec 21: Cranberries!

Happy Solstice!  Solstice occurred around 7 am this morning.  The days will be longer soon!  This week’s ingredient is cranberries.  I guarantee you I will consume at least one cranberry vodka cocktail this week, plus we will use cranberry sauce on Friday with a turkey dinner.  Angela’s Kitchen  is this week’s gluten free menu swap host, so click on over there and check out all the great menus floating around.

This weekend I made three different batches of brittle:  pine nut, pumpkin seed, almond brittle with red chile and fleur de Sel; coconut cardamom brittle  and macadamia nut, almond, coconut brittle, both of the last two also had cayenne and fleur de Sel.  That heat combined with crunch and salty sweet  is so delicious!  It is the best brittle I have ever eaten and the first time I have made it.  I made the coconut brittle for a friend who has a peanut allergy and she loved it.

Sunday: Snowpeas with pork stirfry – a hold over from last week’s menu 
Monday: Latkes/potato pancakes with Weiss wurst
Tuesday: Vietnamese Chicken Pho – I still have fresh Thai basil growing in the basement greenhouse/room.  Organic free range chicken raised by my brother for this pot of soup.
Heading North for the holidays at the farm:
Christmas eve – shrimp cocktails and roast beef
Christmas day tradition: cheese fondue with veggies and beef fondue with many dipping sauces with baked potatoes, cheesy parm bread and salad
Christmas day after Roasted Turkey (extended family gathering) with hot spiced wine
Saturday night:  Hanging and likely eating too, at the Bluebird in Leland – traditional reunion weekend gathering spot for all those who no longer live in Leland, but are home for the holidays.

I am bringing apps for both Christmas eve and Day:  mini meatballs with porcini mushroom, parm and thyme, spinach veggie dip with tortillas, shrimp, hopefully some blue cheese gougeres, and a cheese and salami platter with lots of GF crackers.  Oh and pate, if it works.  I have a liverfree pate in the oven right now.  I used chestnut puree instead of liver hoping it will give a similar spreadable texture.  Country pate with homemade fermented dill pickles and dijon.  I have the whole week off to play and cook until we head North.

Happy Solstice and Merry Christmas!

i’m out

Menu of the week; Cocktail of the Week: Ginger lemon fizz Feb 18th

I figured out my menu plan before knowing the “secret ingredient” butternut squash, so I will see if I can fit it in somewhere, perhaps some butternut squash curry soup for lunch on a day when I am working out of the house this week. This week’s menu is hosted by Gluten Free Sox! Check out the new look of her blog today!

Cocktail of the week: Ginger lemon fizz

I made a simple syrup with loads of fresh ginger and lemon grass in it, add to some vodka, ice, lots of lemon juice, lemon wedge and top with soda water – refreshing and easy.

Sunday: Traditional with a flare

Roasted 1/2 chicken with lemon and herbs with roasted new potatoes (still from the farm) and roasted asparagus served with an herby yogurt. ( I thawed the last of our free range chicken and cut it in half, half for the roasted chix and the other half was poached for Tues and then once the meat was cooked, I threw the bones back in for the stock)


Lunch: Day off and Butternut squash curry soup (ha ha I had a can of butternut squash in the cupboard for a squash emergency)

Dinner: Italian momma’s house (Well, if my momma were Italian, I am sure she would have cooked this for me…)

Spinach and Ricotta stuffed Cannelloni (I hope, we will see if my pasta works out) in a bolognese sauce with fresh mozzarella – fun with the pasta machine on the day off!

Tuesday: Comfort food

Chicken pot pie and green salad – Thanks to Carrie for this idea! It’s finally time to try the croissant recipe for my crust!

Wednesday: Neuvo Mexican

Grilled Salmon in a roasted serrano pepper tequila cream sauce with Mexican style rice

Thursday: Irish rainy days

Leek and cheese soup with crusty wheat free bread for dipping

Friday: Indian

Lamb curry – that is unless we have too many leftovers in which case I will skip this as we are leaving for vacation for the next ten days in the morning! I am making an effort to cook with less leftovers and that takes some training on my part.


Seattle and Portland bound!

Menu of the week Feb 4th and cocktail of the week: Chai-tini!

I have jury duty this week, so since I my schedule is not in my control, I am going for more simplified meals, unless I get home early (I work out of my house when not on the road) then I might just change it up a bit. This week’s menu swap is hosted by Sally over at Aprovechar. Sally has successfully been dieting on top of a GF diet and has proudly lost 20 pounds. I should follow her example!

Cocktail of the week: I still have to come up with this, ideas anyone?  Chaitini it is!  See the lastest post for recipe and photo.

Added note: my darling BF brought home one of Jamie Oliver’s cook books from the library last night, so this menu is subject to change should he decide to create a Jamie dish, all of which look fabulous!

Monday: Southwest

Green chile stew with pork (ours), roasted green chiles and tomatoes from the garden and potatoes (still eating potatoes from the farm up North) (got home early so I have more time to cook)

are you going to gemmi that tomato? Green chile roast ripe ready to can tomatoes

Tuesday: All American

Homemade mac and cheese with a nice green salad (and I don’t have to go in for Jury duty! yea!)

Wednesday: Pacific NW

Wild Pacific Silverbell (I think, it came from Trader Joe’s) Salmon poached in wine with a light tarragon cream sauce, wild rice and broccoli rabe sauteed with garlic and maybe sprinkled with crushed hazelnuts or something North Westy like that.

Thursday: Rome around Tuscany (did you get the pun??)

Eggplant/chicken Parmesan (eggplant for me, chicken for my poultry craving bf)

Friday: A trip to Thailand

Pad Thai with tofu or Lard Nah with crispy tofu and asian greens (Friday is a long way off) and fried spring rolls made with rice wrappers. Maybe some hot and sour soup to go with it.

i’m out