Tout de Suite

Hello long lost readers. It’s hot as hell in Washington, DC, so when it came to making a French-themed fete for Bastille Day, Coq au Vin was out of the question. Essentially anything Julia Child would make was out of the question. We needed light, refreshing, and fresh. So the dinner I ended up making was more of a French-inspired dinner, but with lots of good stuff from all over.

It began in the early afternoon with some prep. Pate Brisee in a food processor, i.e. the best kind:

I also made some basil sweet syrup (more on that later…)

And of course, very slowly caramelized onions

The meal commenced with this plate of goodies (with Manchego, Havarti, Jarlsberg and Feta)

It continued with a little appetizer of stuffed fried zucchini blossoms  (I stuffed them with red onion instead of shallots)

It went on to this onion tart

But we couldn’t help and have a drink before digging into the tart. My sous-chef/best-friend/cocktail-master/benetton-twin made this gorgeous Blackberry Caipirinha

Which was a perfect summer drink

And then proceeded to pull the tart out of the oven, burn my arm really badly, drop the tart face down, which meant we ate this instead. It was still delicious but a bit on the salty side.

Luckily, the faux Niçoise was still real pretty

Dinner ended with delicious grilled peaches, honeyed mascarpone, and the delicious basil syrup (an amalgamation of three recipes which worked real well)

And to all, bon nuit!

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Unemployment=Delicious Food

Well, that’s a pretty unusual outcome, but it is only to be expected in my universe of unusual outcomes. With graduation behind me (time!), the onset of summer (beautiful produce!), and the abundance of hungry friends (friends!), I present to you, the first awesome meal of summer. This was to celebrate one of my favorite people, and we were joined by the two other favorite people with whom I reside. Come to our home for food. There’ll be cake here almost 87% of the time. I’m not sharing these recipes (all my own) because then you would have no reason to come visit me.

First course, yellow heirloom Gazpacho (with a lisp)

Salad course, Avocado and Grapefruit salad

Main course, super-salty goodness of a pizza. Potatoes, Mozz, Pecorino, and Spinach.

Finally, a strawberry clafouti. (Okay, that’s a lie. I made this a couple of weeks ago for brunch, and to be honest it was disgusting. But, it wasn’t my recipe, so whatever. And it photographed really well. In reality last night we had coffee ice cream covered in decaf freshly brewed espresso, that WAS my idea, and it was delicious. I commend me).

Never left the shtetl

Actually, as it turns out I grew up eating almost solely Moroccan food and have very little nostalgia for the Shtetl. But, my mother knew what she was marrying into, and she taught me to make a mean chicken soup. I added the Challa and Brisket. And before I knew it I ended up with a carcass of chicken and a pound of brisket fat in the garbage can.

A whole chicken. WOAH.

A brisket bigger than my face

Carnage

Challah strands

4-braid and 6-braid

Shabbos stars

Beautiful stamping

Holiday leftovers

I haven’t posted since Thanksgiving. WHAT?!

I made a couple of new things over the last few months. Highlights included these chicken meatballs in a spicy preserved lemon sauce.

Served with Orzo, these made me reconsider my suspicion of preserved lemons.

For dessert, made some Pear Clafouti, mostly because pears are pretty:

They were baked in what is essentially pancake batter. Everything is delicious in pancake batter.

It’s fall, and it’s chili

Fall is here!

Here’s a weather appropriate meal for you: Chili (with coffee, cocoa, beer and lots of beef) and cornbread (to which I added cheddar, jalapeños, and scallions). Had a bunch on the first cold night, on the second cold night, and froze the rest for the next cold night!