What's for Dinner #69 - The "It's Gotta Be May" Edition - May 2021

'Twas kismet. I was craving peas but I didn’t know what I wanted to do with them. Faux arroz con camarones, the arroz being cauliflower rice. I left it sort of brothy? and didn’t try for a soccarat. A green salad with v/o dressing.


Wow, that doesn’t sound good. Great you still have your appetite as it all looks wonderful. Wishing you a speedy recovery.


Oh yum. Mushrooms and asparagus is one of my favorite combos. Enjoy your trip!


Haven’t gone with this in a while. Chicken cutlet over garlic mashed. Quick and easy comfort food.


Like it . Rice with prawns.

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Started out making arayes, which have been on my to-make list for ages.

But the lebanese pita I was repurposing for this was too thin… I managed to open just one properly, so I used half the meat mixture for 4 quarters.


Decided to make the rest into sfeeha / fatayer - my favorite dish from the local lebanese restaurant here.

A quick yeast dough with one rise (I followed Ottolenghi’s dough recipe for these). The result was really quite wonderful.

The dough was different from the restaurant ones, though, which are quite flat and soft. These puffed up more and were crisper and firmer. I might try a different dough next time.


Wow - yum!

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I made dinner for our friends who had a baby yesterday (we texted to invite them out, and they responded: “just had the baby an hour ago!” Fun surprise.) They’re vegetarian, so the meal was old-skool lentil tacos (filling done in the IP, naturally), smoky roasted cauliflower, crunchy and flour tortillas, all the fixin’s (sour cream, freshly shredded sharp cheddar and jack, tomatoes, lettuce, fresh salsa), homemade Mexican rice, and lactation brownies (basically added brewer’s yeast, an extra egg, almonds, oats, dark chocolate chunks, and almond butter to a good walnut brownie mix). And some tortilla chips and half a cinnamon-swirl loaf made by a neighbor.

We’re also having the lentils and rice ourselves as burritos tonight.


Just wow. All looks so delicious.

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I forgot to post last night’s dinner:

@buttertart’s pot-stuck tofu, cauli-jasmine rice (mostly cauliflower), miso-glazed hakurei turnips and Swiss chard, and TJ’s pork shumai:

And these were tonight’s lentil, rice, and cheese burritos. Hit the spot.


Bacon cheeeeeeezeburger drizzled with Worcestershire sauce before cooking to medium rare on a toasted brioche bun with caramelized onions on the bottom bun.

The lone side was Alexia garlic and pepper TOTS that I just found after a rearrangement of my upstairs freezer. And wine.


So I’m dancing around the kitchen to 70s rock, sipping a Negroni, making Ina’s marinara sauce for chicken parm when I remember that chicken parm has mozzarella, of which I have none. Why is it called chicken parm if it has mozzarella? Oh well, I’ve already strayed, no red wine for the sauce so I used vermouth rosso. I’ll just wing it. Pounded and breaded chicken thighs with marinara sauce and parm. Sides asparagus and peas with sauce gribiche , salad of tomato, cukes, red onion, chiffonade of basil with balsamic, evoo dressing.


We enjoyed another fabulous dinner at Drew’s in Keyport, NJ. Below is a link to details and pictures for those that are interested.


Fettucine (getting pretty good at the homemade pasta thing) with king oyster mushrooms and ramps, miso soup with spinach.



Turkey sausage, peppers, and onions. Can hardly tell the difference. Hardly. Sweet vermouth in the sauce. While the bread looks sturdy it turned to mush real fast. Ended up needing a fork. While this is of course no comparison to real pork sausage, we enjoyed this turkey version much better than chicken sausage. I’ve been going to the gym for a month strong now and am down 16 pounds (my GI issues probably helped too LOL). Trying to make better decisions without sacrificing too much flavor.

To drink was a Last Word. Okay, two. Cheated with Rose’s lime juice instead of fresh squeezed.


May I add what was for dessert? Well, my mom’s friend and coworker is vegan and routinely gives us vegan foods to try. My mom usually passes them along. Many are ethnic and delicious. Some are curious. All are worth a shot.

So when I saw a Trader Joe’s “Cheese-less” Cheesecake in the fridge, I thought, “Hmmm this will be interesting.” My recent mysterious GI issues have me watching literally every ingredient and aside from small amounts of cheese, I’ve avoided dairy the last three weeks. I figured this dairy-free dessert would be a somewhat tame way to end the meal.


The staggering amount of fat and added sugar didn’t trouble me. Whatever. The lima beans in the “cheese topping” didn’t phase me. The taste, however, was astonishingly and shockingly bad. I don’t think I’ve spit food out since I was a child. Thankfully I was standing in the kitchen right near the garbage. OH. MY. GOODNESS. It had this sharp artificial bite that really defies description for something made of vegetable matter. I’m not a cheesecake guy at all, so this was scarring. I was by myself at this point and even had to say out loud for confirmation, “My God this is awful!”. I’m at a loss for more words! Help!!!


Bomba rice , with red peppers, tomato , garlic and onion. Spices added . Sweet Spanish paprika and saffron. Red snapper . Cooked in my 16 inch stainless skillet. It was good . But . Cheers .


White bean and tuna salad. Actually “Yellow Eye” from Rancho Gordo.


Looks good!

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Brunch in today, Sunday.