What's for Dinner #32 - the Spring Has Finally Sprung! Edition - April '18

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Frittata friday using up some straggling zuchinni and potatoes and bits of cheese.

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I’m so glad you enjoy that potato leek soup :slight_smile: i have many happy memories associated with it. It’s still rather cold here, i need to make roasted celeriac myself! I love it yet hesitate to deal with the prep. Gorgeous meals as always

Frittata or omelette gives me comfort and makes me happy in all types of cuisines. Eggs are amazing.

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It is a classic French soup, good but yet so simple, need a minimum of ingredients. Better with a good broth. But at times it is just to get rid of “aged” potatoes and leeks.

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forgot pictures of mapo

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Long day included helping Mom with some bills and other stuff, going over to my sister’s to feed their cats, and a traffic-bound drive home.

BISO chicken breasts marinated in olive oil, lemon juice, minced garlic, dried oregano, ground sumac, Aleppo pepper and salt. Roasted in a hot oven.

Sides were leftover rice and some steamed green beans with toasted almonds. And wine.

Gratuitous pics of glamour shots taken this morning before I left the house of Finn and Alfie.

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I was having a Rice Vinegar Crisis and finally picked some up yesterday (why do stores only sell the sweetened seasoned stuff?? I just want regular no crapola in it rice vinegar!) so I celebrated by making more cucumber salad! I know, it’s totally a problem…

I also made that amazing radish kimchi salad with the rest of my enormous daikon- i just cooked the daikon about five min so it was firm/tender and used my white kimchi and baby arugala. Added in some cubed smoked tofu.

Plans to go out to dinner tonight fell through, they woke up sick this morning.
I had the rest of the kimchi salad and just boiled a few veggie tofu dumplings i dipped in a mix of one part soy sauce, 3 parts black vinegar with a few shards of ginger (the Google told me this was what the fantastic dumpling diping sauce is at din tai fung and it’s damned close to what i remember)
Glass of reisling a la carte.

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Linda, they don’t want you to go!


Got back a bit later than usual from a day out in the Tyrolean capital Innsbruck thus dinner had to be fast and easy.

Asparagus from the Italian side of Tirol.

Austrians are hell-bent on local products and quality Austrian products. I want to try their quality products (they have different quality control seals) and this beef is the first meat I got.

Tiny asparagus so young you can eat it unpeeled. I don’t have such tiny asparagus at home.

My lodging’s kitchen. Looks OK but not very well equipped at all. It’s strange to use a normal sized oven, dishwasher, cupboards, counter space etc. Mine appliances are only 2/3 the size and counter space is only as wide as the oven.

Where I sit.

Where I eat. It’s a nice holiday flat, in a typical Austrian alpine country house. There’s a steam cabin, infrared sauna etc which the owners let you use. I used the steamer on the first night, it is only separated by a door from their wine cellar. Wow, nice (both the cellar and the “wellness room”)!

Imagine this when I say “Austrian Alps”. About to land but look at all these peaks. Innsbruck is spectacularly situated in a valley to be capital of Tirol. Mountains are absolutely everywhere you look, literally 360 degrees.

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I’m headed to Salzburg today myself. Go Alps!

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I have been there (well, 1997) it was so beautiful! One of my favourite cities.

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Hats off, knowing how much great dishes coming from that 2/3 size.

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Ended a short stay in Vienna with a lovely dinner last night of Bärlauchcremesuppe (ramp cream soup) and pork shoulder in an apple -caraway-speck sauce with Bärlauchkartoffelpuree at a place near Schönbrunn called die Metzgerei. Very cozy and off the beaten path, so not at all touristy.


Then some ice cream from Tichy before catching the train. Apricot and caramel. The texture was incredible. The caramel flavor wasn’t too interesting on its own but complemented the tangy apricot (the star of the show) perfectly. Tichy itself is a Vienna institution and a fun throwback - it was packed on this gorgeous day!

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Of course, now I’m thinking of @biondanonima touring Salzburg like the von Trapp Family children and singing Do-Re-Mi. :wink:

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I want a video of the @biondanonima version!

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Well, my dinners have not been photo-worthy lately, but they’ve been tasty enough. Last weekend I made a brisket for my son’s best friend (actually, my third son) whose father, the family brisket maker, passed a couple of years ago. I used the Instantpot and was pretty happy with the results.


Then we had French onion soup with good beef stock from a local butcher and cheesy sourdough toast for dipping. A simple red-leaf salad w/vinaigrette paired nicely with the soup.

From leftovers, there were sourdough, caramelized onion, sharp cheddar and brisket sandwiches. I’ll save you from the pictures of the unrecognizably mangled sandwiches, but they were probably my favorite meal of the week. Quite rich, though.

Last night I pulled the last of the Rick Bayless hybrid recipe for mole poblano from the freezer and made enchiladas with rotisserie chicken and guacamole. Again, very homely pictures but tasty food.

I’m lacking inspiration for tonight’s meal, so it may be Indian takeout or pizza.

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I have been thinking of making that for weeks…but no homemade chicken or beef stock, I only have fish stock now.

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I’m doing the Sound of Music bike tour tomorrow and if there is a sing along, you know I’m participating! I do a pretty mean Lonely Goatherd yodel if I do say so myself!

More ramps for dinner tonight - Bärlauchkasnocken. Basically cheesy spätzle with a ton of garlicky rampy goodness.

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I was going to use the last of the homemade chicken stock, but then remembered that the stock from the butcher shop was quite good. I happened to get out of work early and had some leisurely time to head there. It’s from Savenor’s in Cambridge, Mass. It’s in Julia Child’s old neighborhood and according to the shop, she used to frequent there. The stock is $10/quart US currency, which is cheaper than I could probably make it. They claim to simmer it from 48-72 hrs. It’s worth spending a few dollars on for a dish that is all about the onions and the broth.

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I would love that! Enjoy Salzburg. I save it for another trip.

Went hiking in the afternoon. Perhaps I’m supposed to reapply sun cream every half hour? I got a dark tan now. Hiking photos below dinner photos.

Got back from hiking, had a couple of beers and got on with making dinner. I always buy something fatty from goose or duck and save the solidified fat to cook with instead of buying or bringing along oil.

Crisp-fried Tyrolean Speck and torn pancakes. Based on a traditional Austrian dish called “Kaiserschmarrn” (Emperor’s mess) which I make once in a while for lunch. But I have the Speck and rye flour and came up with something similar.

I was thinking maybe the rye flour would be too heavy for the batter to be fluffy but it turned out OK. Yesterday I saw an 80’s blender hidden in 1 of the cupboards and thought I would make my version of Kaiserschmarrn today. The fluffiness of the pancakes comes from beaten egg whites.

Let’s face it, besides the hiking I’m actually here for the Speck. :pig:

Some wine after dinner before going to the cellar to use the steam cabin. So nice after hiking in the sun.

A few hiking photos from this afternoon. The wind has been ferocious and literally non-stop since last night and still no sign of it dying down. It was extremely bright and sunny I saw nothing on the camera’s screen. Not satisfied with the photos as I had no control over them when in the bright sun.

It started out easy but the climb was relentless. Just continuous ascend. When this path ended (not long after this photo was taken) the next part became more rugged and muddy, with some ice and snow even.

Josef keeps his bees here.

Taking a break here.

Look what I found. Hiking trail becomes luge/skeleton track in the winter.
Downhill skiing has its own track. I saw that they intersect at some points. There are a few people still skiing today.

On the way down now.

Another surprise. Children’s playground in the woods. I did see a few hikers along the way. A young couple with a pram and an infant in it. Austrians are avid hikers and skiers and this is their playground.

Came back down the the main paved road to catch the bus back, this is where we waited for the bus, right next to a traditional restaurant. Typical traditional Tyrolean dishes are their specialities, plus today’s offerings on the sign outside. I know how to make all these Tyrolean meals so that’s what going to be my dinners in the coming days.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold