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November, 2017...What's for dinner???

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126 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:07 am

cookingirl

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Happy Thanksgiving to all!

127 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:16 pm

Bugster2

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We are having a heat wave. It is already in the 90's. Not exactly Thanksgiving weather.
This year my sister wants me to cook the turkey in an oven bag because she says it stays more moist. We shall see. It is going to be a simple T-day: turkey, dressing, mashed, gravy and green bean casserole. Momofuku's crack pie for dessert.
Been checking out the Black Friday deals. My food processor bit the dust about a month ago. All of the plastic around the stem that holds the bowl, shattered. It was a KA. I have been doing research and it had come down to the Cuisinart Custom 14 or a Breville Sous Chef. Last night I was wishing I could see how they performed when I got the idea to look on YouTube. Sure enough, a woman was testing the KA Pro Line, the Cuisinart Custom 14 and the Breville Sous Chef. The KA mangled everything. The Cuisinart wasn't great at chopping parsley. It left a lot of long stems while the rest was minced. Onions were the same: chopped but with huge chunks left over. Cheese left large chunks in the bowl and on top of the grating blade. It sliced tomatoes just fine. The Breville was perfect at every task. So Breville it will be. Now I have to choose between the 12 cup and a 16 cup. The 16 cup is huge and comes with all the disks and bells and whistles. I think it may be over-kill for my needs so I am going for the 12 cup. Breville is one of those companies that rarely discounts and doesn't allow coupons. Amazon has the 16 cup for $40 less and I found another store that is offering 20% off even though they shouldn't. Kohls gives you $15 dollars in Kohls Cash for every $50 spent so I am going to buy from Kohls and take my husband shopping for some new clothes. That is the best deal I have found.

128 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Thu Nov 23, 2017 6:03 pm

Niagara Visitor


Good for you, but I am tired just from reading about all the testing. Happy Turkey Day AKA Thanksgiving! I imagine there's turkey all around, I am making some Oxtail stew for myself.

129 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Thu Nov 23, 2017 7:15 pm

Bugster2

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Niagara Visitor wrote:Good for you, but I am tired just from reading about all the testing.  Happy Turkey Day AKA Thanksgiving!  I imagine there's turkey all around, I am making some Oxtail stew for myself.  

I am tired too. I was up until 3AM researching. Got up at 6AM. I managed to sneak in an hour nap at 11. It is a big investment so I needed to make the right decision. It is in my nature to do it and hunt for the best price.

130 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:30 am

UNCLE JIMMY

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Bugster2 wrote:We are having a heat wave. It is already in the 90's. Not exactly Thanksgiving weather.
This year my sister wants me to cook the turkey in an oven bag because she says it stays more moist. We shall see. It is going to be a simple T-day: turkey, dressing, mashed, gravy and green bean casserole. Momofuku's crack pie for dessert.
Been checking out the Black Friday deals. My food processor bit the dust about a month ago. All of the plastic around the stem that holds the bowl, shattered. It was a KA. I have been doing research and it had come down to the Cuisinart Custom 14 or a Breville Sous Chef. Last night I was wishing I could see how they performed when I got the idea to look on YouTube. Sure enough, a woman was testing the KA Pro Line, the Cuisinart Custom 14 and the Breville Sous Chef. The KA mangled everything. The Cuisinart wasn't great at chopping parsley. It left a lot of long stems while the rest was minced. Onions were the same: chopped but with huge chunks left over. Cheese left large chunks in the bowl and on top of the grating blade. It sliced tomatoes just fine. The Breville was perfect at every task. So Breville it will be. Now I have to choose between the 12 cup and a 16 cup. The 16 cup is huge and comes with all the disks and bells and whistles. I think it may be over-kill for my needs so I am going for the 12 cup. Breville is one of those companies that rarely discounts and doesn't allow coupons. Amazon has the 16 cup for $40 less and I found another store that is offering 20% off even though they shouldn't. Kohls gives you $15 dollars in Kohls Cash for every $50 spent so I am going to buy from Kohls and take my husband shopping for some new clothes. That is the best deal I have found.

I would go with the Breville too!...
One thing I experimented with, was chopping onions and celery to obtain the size I wish; without pulverizing or skipping causing big chunks.
That was by using only the small cuisinart mini processor.
It is smaller in diameter ( obviously ) and the food to be chopped just volcanos up and showers down to get a quick even chop.santa

131 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:43 am

Bugster2

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UNCLE JIMMY wrote:
Bugster2 wrote:We are having a heat wave. It is already in the 90's. Not exactly Thanksgiving weather.
This year my sister wants me to cook the turkey in an oven bag because she says it stays more moist. We shall see. It is going to be a simple T-day: turkey, dressing, mashed, gravy and green bean casserole. Momofuku's crack pie for dessert.
Been checking out the Black Friday deals. My food processor bit the dust about a month ago. All of the plastic around the stem that holds the bowl, shattered. It was a KA. I have been doing research and it had come down to the Cuisinart Custom 14 or a Breville Sous Chef. Last night I was wishing I could see how they performed when I got the idea to look on YouTube. Sure enough, a woman was testing the KA Pro Line, the Cuisinart Custom 14 and the Breville Sous Chef. The KA mangled everything. The Cuisinart wasn't great at chopping parsley. It left a lot of long stems while the rest was minced. Onions were the same: chopped but with huge chunks left over. Cheese left large chunks in the bowl and on top of the grating blade. It sliced tomatoes just fine. The Breville was perfect at every task. So Breville it will be. Now I have to choose between the 12 cup and a 16 cup. The 16 cup is huge and comes with all the disks and bells and whistles. I think it may be over-kill for my needs so I am going for the 12 cup. Breville is one of those companies that rarely discounts and doesn't allow coupons. Amazon has the 16 cup for $40 less and I found another store that is offering 20% off even though they shouldn't. Kohls gives you $15 dollars in Kohls Cash for every $50 spent so I am going to buy from Kohls and take my husband shopping for some new clothes. That is the best deal I have found.

I would go with the Breville too!...
One thing I experimented with, was chopping onions and celery to obtain the size I wish; without pulverizing or skipping causing big chunks.
That was by using only the small cuisinart mini processor.
It is smaller in diameter ( obviously ) and the food to be chopped just volcanos up and showers down to get a quick even chop.santa  

I have the mini and it was a lifesaver when I had all of that dental surgery. I ground everything up so I could eat. It is a great little machine. Mine is starting to show stress fractures in the plastic of the chopping blade. When It goes, I will buy another.

132 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:13 am

UNCLE JIMMY

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Well..... it's all over! Bellies are full, gobble gobble is in the big pot that Tina made soup out of the carcass.
All the the tons of leftovers, are packed away into the refrigerators to turn into mold and unrecognizable growths before they get thrown out! LOL.... I have nothing to do about it.

We all got stuffed..... I took a siesta for two hours, and Tina mommy, is watching tv.

DIL's mom stopped by on her way to visit her Sister and enjoy a meal. She left here to continue the last 20 minutes to her sisters place, and *WHACK*....S*&^%$#%&I^..... Damn!!!
At the top of Budd Lake Hill, she gets side swiped by a car that was in the fast lane.
Fender and wheel damage, and shaken up. Then of course, the phone call to Sherrie and Jimmy with tears and quibbling. She was ok, the car was still driveable, and the guy that hit her...was an ex- cop ( retired ). Mad

If you or anyone were to ask me what's for dinner tomorrow, I would say hot dogs, or hamburgers, or a sub sandwich with the works.....
I did eat turkey today, but enough for the year already. My turkey limit, is d o n e !

133 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:43 am

bethk

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Admin
YAWN.......Boy, I'm STILL tired! I slept a full night but I'm still groggy, my hips still hurt, my feet are still screaming at me......

Boy, it was a GREAT DAY!!!!

I seriously do not know how I did it when I was cooking for 15. I made a small (by past year standards) Thanksgiving Dinner for 5 people and I was totally exhausted last night. Thank goodness I have Mr. Amazing to do all the cleaning for me, he was a trooper!

Dinner was a huge success if you consider the compliments from the guests. Of course, they are all non-cooks and use restaurant holiday buffets as comparison....ANYONE can cook better than most buffets, IMO. That's where the food service mass-produced food is reheated in the restaurant's hotel pans.

My turkey came out of the oven particularly pretty this year. I don't know if it's because it was a Honeysuckle White, if it was because it was a little 11 pounder or if I just got lucky. I did the same as usual ~ a key being, I think, the overnight it sat in the refrigerator uncovered so the skin could dry out. Before roasting I stuffed the cavity with lemon rinds, onion, celery and thyme sprigs. I pushed some butter with thyme under the breast skin and brushed melted butter over the bird before a healthy sprinkle of s&p. I started it at 450° for 30 minutes (well, OK, 20 minutes.....the high heat and butter caused the house to fill with smoke so I cut it back to 325° early) and then covered the golden bird loosely with foil for the 3 hour roast. The skin was golden and crisp ~ just like a magazine picture. When I took it out of the oven the thigh registered 185° and the breast was at 180° which was fine with me.

I left the bird covered in foil on the side of the stove for a good hour and it stayed hot....the long wait for the sides to be cooked must have been just right because it was really moist and juicy without any pink even around the joints. (Man, nothing turns me off more than seeing PINK on turkey or chicken.)

My vegetable sides got rave reviews! The Brusssels sprouts with bacon, shallots, grapes and walnuts was a hit. The Green Bean Casserole with the homemade mushroom sauce using shitake and oyster mushrooms was especially good, to me. Even Dane (who doesn't usually approve of adding sauces to vegetables) commented it was really tasty. I roasted the mushrooms and then let them simmer in the roux thickened sauce. The mushroom flavor was very pronounced and much better than the can of cream of mushroom soup.

But the mashed potatoes got the most conversation. I made my usual 'make ahead' potato casserole ~ boiled potatoes, stewed onions (chopped onion simmered for 30 minutes or more, very low, in a half stick of butter until almost mush), cream cheese, sour cream and s&p. All three of our guests were commenting on the taste.

Ana (from Brazil) has been here to eat before. She loves an invitation as she just doesn't cook for just herself much at all. I can understand that. I will have to make a point to invite her more often as she enjoys everything I cook (EXCEPT the turkey - she says she doesn't eat anything with feathers.......no turkey, no chicken, no duck, no goose) Jimmy, YOU can understand, huh? But she sat the casserole of mashed potatoes right next to HER plate! Hahahahaha Of course, she's about 92 pounds and eats in tablespoon measurements.

At the end of the meal, Sharon commented she thought it was the best Thanksgiving Dinner she had ever eaten. All I could think to say was, "Thank you."

Bill was most complimentary, as well. He really liked the complex variations to the potatoes and vegetables, stating he had never had better.

How can you not feel wonderful after lovely guests like that sit at your table?

134 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 11:47 am

Bugster2

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Since my food processor was broken I couldn't make any pie dough. Making pie dough by hand is too painful for me so I thought I would buy a ready-made pie crust. I have tried grocery store brands, Pillsbury and Betty Crocker. Pretty inedible as far as I am concerned. I had read where Trader joe's crust was good and so I bought a box. It comes frozen and I defrosted it. After defrosting I unrolled it and found that most of it had cracks, so I re-rolled and patted it to get it sealed. Put it in the pan and par-baked it. It came out with a couple of cracks so I filled it in with a butter-flour paste and baked it again. Looked fine when I pulled it out of the oven. Poured in my filling and baked it. During baking the crust cracked again and the pecan filling leaked under the crust creating a welded on mess. I can say that the taste and texture of the crust was excellent though. As good as homemade. I scraped out the filling and Katie and I have been eating it by the spoonful. The crust would not budge so I had to soak it overnight in hot water to get it out of the pan. How can I prevent the filling from leaking? I will have to do research and ask King Arthur Flour.
Got the turkey carcass in a 12qt pot on the stove. It is creating a hot turkey fug but I will get some great stock for the next batch of turkey gravy.

135 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:22 pm

bethk

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Admin
Bugster....next time try lining your pie pan with parchment paper. That's what I do with my crostada to remove it whole from the pie pan. It's easier to get it to form to the shape if you cut into a circle first and then crumple it tightly and then smooth out ~ a Martha Stewart hack.

It makes pie pans easy to clean up.

I'd probably try baking my pecan pie at a lower temperature for a little longer time in hopes it didn't get caramelized so much.....just a suggestion.

136 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 12:52 pm

Bugster2

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Hadn't thought of parchment for a pie pan. Do you line the bottom and sides? I would think some folding of the paper would be needed in order for the paper to lie flat.

137 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:19 pm

bethk

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Admin
First I fold the parchment into a triangle shape so I can measure from the middle of the pie plate and make a sort of 'round'....then I open it up and crumple it tightly into a wad. Then I smooth it out and it easily forms to the inside and up the sides of the pie plate ~ OK to have it larger because that gives you something to pull on when you want to remove your cooled pie from the pie plate.

Don't try to move a warm pie or it'll just fall apart and end up on your counter top.


((don't even wonder how I know that!))

138 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 1:32 pm

Bugster2

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I just watched a clip from Jimmy Fallon on Thanksgiving fails that his viewers sent in.
The funniest was from a dummy (we have all been there) who took a frozen pie out of its' foil pan and attempted to bake it directly on the rack. Mess? you wouldn't believe.
Another was from someone who said he/she was in the kitchen with grandpa while he was making mashed potatoes. While he was mashing, his denture fell out into the bowl. He picked it up, put it in his mouth, and said "Don't you dare tell a soul". OMG. Too funny!
Another was from a girl who said that when Dad was carving the turkey, there was pink juice oozing out of the leg cut. Dad said it was just leg juice. OK. She wouldn't eat it but everyone else did and everyone, except her, got food poisoning. What a nightmare!
There were several pics of fried turkeys that were charred black. Another pic of an outdoor turkey fryer on fire.
Another of a girl who thought the bag of giblets was stuffing and cooked it in the turkey.
Another story of an aunt that was supposed to bring the turkey and forgot it. The family had sides for Thanksgiving.
My sister once put in a turkey and forgot to turn on the stove and didn't discover the fact until 6 hours later. She cooked it anyway. Why no one got sick I will never know. I wouldn't touch the thing.

139 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 6:50 pm

NormM

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Speaking of black turkey. One year I tried a Martha Stewart recipe where you soaked cheesecloth in wine and butter and draped it over the turkey and baked it that way. I put it in the oven, got dressed, came back ten minutes later and smoke was coming from the oven. The cheese cloth was starting to catch on fire. I took it off with tongs and tossed it in the sink and finished cooking the turkey normally. It turned out just fine but the cheesecloth was black and smoking in the sink until I turned on the water and put it out. I hate to think what could have happened if I was out of the kitchen any longer than I was.

http://r2j1cp@gmail.com

140 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 7:00 pm

bethk

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Geeze, Louise! Makes you NOT trust Martha about anything, huh?

Tonight is leftovers. I was amazed I was able to actually eat last night. Usually when I prepare a big meal I lose my appetite completely. But maybe I wasn't as stressed with only 5 to cook for.

So, tonight is turkey, dressing, gravy, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole....maybe other stuff but I can't think of it right now.

141 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:59 pm

Bugster2

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I know what you mean Beth, you dine on the smell.

142 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 10:57 pm

UNCLE JIMMY

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Tina had an appointment, and on the way home she stopped at Piggy's Deli.
Brought me a roast beef on a kaiser roll; with tomato, onions and mayo.

I wanted nothing to do with turkey.

I'm reading the mail....and we got a big poster like ad for Povitica Bread, from Kansas City KS Strawberry Hill ; boing!! It rang a bell. Norm grew up in strawberry hill, I think he said!
I will say though, those Povitica breads look mighty good.

143 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Fri Nov 24, 2017 11:48 pm

NormM

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I did grow up on Strawberry Hill. Povitica bread is really good. English Walnut is all the people on the hill made when I was young. All the different flavors they have now are recent innovations. On a few occasions when I made it myself, I used pecans which is the best, in my opinion... but no one else makes it with that as far as I know. Once I had a couple of black walnut trees on the land of the house I was renting and made some with that. BIG mistake. It tasted awful to me.

http://r2j1cp@gmail.com

144 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sat Nov 25, 2017 8:08 am

Bugster2

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Beth, I noticed that you eat a lot of sweet potatoes or yams and I got this recipe in my email for soup that might interest you.

https://www.labreabakery.com/recipes/baked-sweet-potato-soup-cranberry-croustade

145 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sat Nov 25, 2017 9:16 am

bethk

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Admin
Thanks, Bugs! The recipe is similar to one I use (well, I don't always use a recipe but I do use the same ingredients and methods) for sweet potato and squash soups. I recently finished the last of my butternut squash soup I had in the freezer.....made the mistake of adding the chopped pecans before I froze it. They didn't taste as good as when I add them at the last minute as a garnish ~ came out kind of soft and off-texture so that was a 'learning' experience.

The other thing I've found is when I freeze my soups made from the sweet potatoes or squash is to not add any finishing half & half or cream. It's much better when added at the end of reheating and I usually use it to thin out the soup to get it to the consistency I want. One thing I always add when making the soups is freshly grated nutmeg ~ personal choice of a flavor I enjoy. I also most often add some fresh thyme when I'm simmering in the stock because I think it adds a nice background flavor.

146 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sat Nov 25, 2017 9:25 pm

bethk

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Admin
The thought of turkey or chicken or even hamburgers just didn't appeal to me.....

I rummaged around in the freezer and hiding among the containers of soup was a quart container of Jambalaya!

Made the last of the Trader Joe's California Sprouted Rice and put the two leftover Fresh Market herb knot dinner rolls in the toaster oven to warm.....SUPPER!


147 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sun Nov 26, 2017 1:55 pm

bethk

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Admin
Today I'm making a crock pot pork roast DD#1 told me about.....with adjustments for what I have on hand, of course. She assures me my substitutions won't make a difference in the final product.

I picked up a 2 pound pork sirloin roast (she usually gets a 4 -5 lb. pork loin). I thinly sliced an onion and put half on the bottom of the crock pot, added the pork roast and then covered the top with Kraft Catalina Salad Dressing. Then I topped that with 1/2 can of jellied cranberry sauce that I had cut into cubes and about the same amount of my homemade whole berry cranberry sauce (she uses one can of whole berry cranberry sauce). Finally, I sprinkled over the second half of thinly sliced onion.

I'll cook it on high for a couple hours and then drop to low until it's done.

She says she slices the meat and then puts the meat back into the sauce to coat it and keep it moist.

I'll let you know tonight how it came out.

148 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sun Nov 26, 2017 2:40 pm

Bugster2

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I want to try out my air fry feature on my Breville oven tonight. I want to try French fries but since I never make them I have no idea what is a good frozen fry to try. Do you have a favorite brand and style?

149 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sun Nov 26, 2017 3:06 pm

bethk

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Admin
I usually get the store brand tater tot 'crowns'.....flat tater tots.

I'm not a fan of any frozen French fry ~ but I do make 'homemade' and do the precook of the thin sliced potatoes in the microwave and then let them cool and dry out before frying or oven-frying to crisp up.

If I were to purchase a frozen one it would most likely be Ore Ida Brand.

150 Re: November, 2017...What's for dinner??? on Sun Nov 26, 2017 5:10 pm

Bugster2

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I can make a decent fry with a recipe I got from Norm. It is a McDonald's copycat. Good but time consuming. My husband prefers that type of fry. I am not familiar with frozen brands so that Is why I was asking. I guess I will try the Ore-Ida brand and see what he thinks.

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