by gwen harlow


Recipes: Chicken and dumplings, chard with garlic and raisins

Posted by on Jan 21, 2010 in photo, recipe | 2 comments

Chicken and dumplings

Chicken and dumplings
1 lb. chicken breasts
1/2 c. chopped onion
1/2 c. chopped celery
1/2 c. sliced carrots
1/2 lb. mushrooms
6 c. chicken stock
Thyme, rosemary, basil, other herbs of choice, chopped
Salt and pepper

Dumplings: 1/2 c. milk and 1-1 1/2 c. pancake mix

Sauté chicken til cooked. Cube.
Sauté onions in dutch oven. When translucent, add celery and carrots. Cook 5 minutes. Add stock, mushrooms, herbs, chicken. Salt and pepper to taste.

Mix milk & pancake mix, should be doughy. Form balls and put on top of stew once boiling. Lower to simmer, cover, and cook til toothpick stuck in dumplings comes out clean, 15-20 minutes. Eat.

Chard with garlic and raisins
Rinse and strip two bunches chard off stalks. Spin off excess water and chop up. Sauté 6 cloves diced garlic in 2 T olive oil in large pot about 30 seconds. Add half the chard, toss, when it gets a bit wilty, add in other half and toss. Throw in a handful of raisins and toss some more. Cover and lower heat, steam 5 minutes til chard is soft.

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Recipes: Bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin; roasted potatoes and mushrooms; honey-glazed carrots

Posted by on Jan 20, 2010 in photo, recipe | 0 comments

Dinner! Nom!

Cook in this order:

Roasted potatoes and mushrooms
Wash and cube a pound or so of potatoes. Place in casserole with 1/2 lb. button crimini mushrooms. Sprinkle with olive oil, salt, pepper, herbs and spices, then toss. Cover with foil and cook at 450° til tender, about one hour.

Bacon-wrapped pork tenderloin
Butterfly 1 lb. pork tenderloin [how to], sprinkle with salt, pepper, and spices/herbs you like. Roll up, and place in lightly-oiled casserole. Slice some bacon in halves, wrap these over the tenderloin and secure with toothpicks. Cook at 450° until center of meat reaches 160° [mine took about 45 minutes].

Honey-glazed carrots
Heat a couple T. butter in a dutch oven. Slice 1 lb. carrots into sticks about 2″ long [I quarter on the fat end], add to pot, then coat with honey. Toss, cover, and simmer about 20 minutes til tender.

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Posted by on Jan 14, 2010 in photo, recipe | 0 comments


Limca! Now available at our corner store.

Tonight’s dinner: Old Bay Shrimp Scampi [made with New Bay, SO FLIPPIN’ GOOD] and broccolini with some kind of Chinese-style sauce Chad whipped up.

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Chad and his fancy-pants dinner

Posted by on Jan 9, 2010 in photo, recipe | 0 comments

After about six months of cooking, starting with absolutely no knowledge at all of anything domestic, Chad has officially surpassed my culinary skills.

I had to wait til midnight to eat but it was totally worth it.

Skirt steak with paprika butter
Sunchoke-kale hash with Farro
Food & Wine (January 2010)

If you’re a veggie, don’t look.

Chad and his fancy-pants dinner

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January 4: It’s the food

Posted by on Jan 5, 2010 in photo, recipe, to-do list | 0 comments

Today we made a menu for the week for the first time in ages, bought far fewer groceries than we usually do [planning! it works! who knew!], and for dinner made pizza [Chad has become THE best pizza maker ever, click through on the photo for what went on mine] and Brussels sprouts* [D swore she hates them but ended up picking the leftovers out of the pan. HA! It’s totally the bacon.] and it was soooooo good. Lousy picture but worth documenting nonetheless:

January 4: Pizza and Brussels sprouts

* I think lexica is the one who shared this recipe: cut the ends off the sprouts and halve, toss in oil, sprinkle with salt and pepper, then bake. I went the stovetop route because the oven was full of pizza, then I tossed in some chopped-up leftover bacon and cooked for a couple minutes.

And here are some of the trinkets I bought at the swap meet yesterday:

Antiques mart score

Also today I did another thing from my extremely detailed list of every single nook and cranny in this house that I am going to clean, sort, and purge the hell out of. One a day hopefully. Today was the cookbooks, got rid of a bag full. And I got my Yelp elite status for 2010 which means more awesome parties with free food and booze.

Tomorrow is:
– write and send cover letter [my first since 2000! what!]
– mail rent
– farmer’s market
– I might go to a happy hour meetup, or I might chicken out because I will only know one person there, but I am determined to meet new people, so I think I will go.

Wednesday is coffee with J.

This week is going well so far [*knock*], how’s yours?

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Glazed carrots, yum!

Posted by on Nov 18, 2009 in recipe | 0 comments

I don’t find carrots to be really exciting especially cooked and these were pretty tasty. Chad was just INSANE for them. The recipe is from Alice Waters’ Simple Food [which I LOVE, esp. for the veg recipes because I am a big ignoramus and it *is* all pretty simple]:

Peel the carrots and cut them into slices or sticks.
Put them in a heavy pot or pan and add water to come about halway up the carrots (don’t pile them higher than an inch or so) [next time, I would use less water than what I thought was half].
Add a good pinch of salt and a couple of teaspoons of butter per serving [I used about 4 pats for a pound of carrots. I also added a handful of brown sugar. Someone suggested honey instead and we will try that next.].
Bring the water to a boil, turn down the heat so the water is simmering, and cover the pan.
Cook until the carrots are tender.
Take off the lid and let the liquid boil down until it has made a buttery sauce that coats the carrots.
Remove the carrots from the pan immediately as the sauce will continue to reduce in the hot pan.
If it reduces too much, it will separate; add a bit of water to bring it back together.
Oil can be used instead of butter, but it won’t make as thick a glaze.
Right at the end of the cooking, stir in a spoonful of chopped cilantro, parsley, or basil [I did not do this due to inclusion of brown sugar].

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Fatty fall dinners, yum!

Posted by on Oct 14, 2009 in photo, recipe | 0 comments

I am either pregnant or having a growth spurt or it’s really, truly fall, either way I have been cooking a lot lately. It might also be because Chad’s been doing it so long and lord knows I love his mu shu and mongolian and black bean and plum sauce but I am a little sick of stir fry. Mama needs some solid, textured, comfort food once in awhile, especially when on days we have the most rain we’ve ever had.

It would probably be better if my cooking wasn’t in direct proportion to the amount of time we’re missing PE class. My ass is spreading by the minute.

Beef stroganoff

This was dinner tonight and super tasty. Recipe at Simply Recipes. I used the TJ’s tri-color egg noodles-shaped pasta which was good but not egg noodles. I will use egg noodles next time.

Coconut Rice, in Chad’s Grandma’s green glass bowl
This is my first time making any kind of rice pudding, I keep meaning to learn how to make the kheer they have at India Palace, because I could eat that stuff all day. This was also delicious, both warm [last night’s dessert] and cold [this afternoon’s snack].

From Cooking With All Things Trader Joe’s by Deana Gunn and Wona Miniati

Coconut Rice
1/2 c. jasmine rice [I only had basmati. It is still delicious.]
1/2 c. water
1 c. + 1/4 c. light coconut milk
3 T. sugar

Combine water, rice, and 1 c. coconut milk in saucepan [I also threw in a cinnamon stick], bring to boil. Reduce heat and simmer on low 30 minutes or until rice is cooked [it was under 20 for me]. Remove from heat and let sit 10 minutes.

The authors also suggest serving atop a drizzle of mango sauce and festooning with some mango chunks but I am not a huge mango fan so I garnished with more cinnamon. I like cinnamon.

Polenta with mushrooms [served with leftover chicken soup]
This was pretty good. I should probably learn to make polenta then it would be MAGNIFICENT.

And my chicken soup gets better every day.

From Cooking With All Things Trader Joe’s by Deana Gunn and Wona Miniati

Polenta with Truffled Mushrooms

Cook sliced-up pre-cooked roll of polenta in oiled pan for 4 minutes on each side, until lightly browned.

In separate pan, cook 2 c. mushrooms in a bit of oil. Add a bit of salt. I also added red pepper flakes.

Serve over polenta, drizzle with truffle oil and garnish with grated parmesan.

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Soup du jour: Stormy chicken!

Posted by on Oct 13, 2009 in photo, recipe | 0 comments

Soup du jour: Stormy chicken!

There was a storm coming in and I woke up all stuffy yesterday, so soup was in order. I made enough so I can have it for lunch all week.

It’s even better reheated with crumbles of cheddar on top.

Stormy Chicken* Soup
Sauté chopped shallot in olive oil. Add chopped celery [2-3] and carrots [2], and 1 cup cubed chicken meat [I have been using the canned white from TJs lately, it’s not quite as good but much quicker].
Add 4 c. chicken broth and 4 c. water.
Season with oregano, salt, red pepper flakes, black pepper, and chopped celery leaves to taste.
Once boiling, add 1/2 cup fideo [available in your Mexican food section, or just break up some vermicelli], then simmer 20 minutes.

Serve with fresh tortilla strips, baguette, or crackers.

* Vegetarian version: DON’T add chicken, and use vegetable broth.

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Ugly mugs and keeping warm

Posted by on Oct 8, 2009 in photo, recipe | 0 comments

Reading: One Simple Tip to Help You Start Your Day in a Better Way
Listening: Baby, have a ball mix

It’s cold again. It wasn’t supposed to be, but we had another record-matching low [set in 1970!] last night and the sun hasn’t come out to warm it back up.

So the mug meme seems appropriate. This is the one that got away, I have never seen anything quite so ugly yet endearing.

Also sorry I didn't get this

Ole’s Waffle Shop is our favorite breakfast joint here in Alameda, they have some pretty tasty coffee for an oldschool diner and the fluffiest pancakes around.

D'arby, hand, Ole's bending-over-backwards chef

Mama Buzz Cafe in Oakland is a great place to hang out, there’s a patio and art up in the side gallery and an ever-expanding menu.


For a little extra sugar rush, the beignets at Cafe du Monde in New Orleans.

Coffee & beignet #2

But of course.

And, as a special bonus if you made it this far, Peet’s has a coupon up, good for 2 drinks for the price of 1 through Sunday, October 11.

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Two-piece chicken dinner

Posted by on Oct 8, 2009 in recipe | 1 comment

Abby Tries Again is doing breakfast week but I haven’t been able to get up early enough, then when I do eat, I forget to photograph it. I did have the beauteous tartina [layer foccacia, pesto, mozzarella, heirloom tomatoes — today’s were red and green — pine nuts, and a drizzle of olive oil] at Julie’s Café with J. shortly before noon, which might count as breakfast, but I forgot to photograph that, too.

But it did get me thinking about making a real dinner [I haven’t in awhile, Chad’s been doing all the cooking, which is awesome though I have about had it with stir fry]. Someone posted a Roast Chicken with Lemon and Thyme recipe earlier this week and I was determined to make it — I had a chicken! and lemons! — but got derailed today by roasting a chicken with Gwynneth.

Gwynneth's Quick Roast Chicken and Potatoes, with Carrots

I deboned a chicken for the first time. I used all fresh herbs [Parsley, sage, rosemary AND thyme.] and a Meyer lemon from my garden. And I added a bunch of carrots to the potato steps [I tossed them in a bit of oil after draining instead of pouring it over after adding them to the chicken].

I made dressing, too, which I was missing several ingredients for but has turned out magnificently nonetheless.

Gwen's Magnificent Dressing

Gwen’s Magnificent Dressing
Serve with Gwynneth’s Chicken

Chop uncooked chicken liver [saved from chicken], sauté in olive oil.
Add one diced shallot, sauté til translucent.

Seach high and low for chicken stock, resort to that one last kosher onion boullion cube from last Passover and one novelty bacon boullion cube.
Add two cups water and boullion cubes to onions.

Throw in handful of cubed mushrooms.
Low simmer while you toast a scoop of sliced almonds in a bit of butter.

Tear up leftover 2/3 of yesterday’s La Farine baguette.
Toss everything in baking pan, put on top rack in oven with chicken [which is at 450°F, per Gwynneth] for last 20 minutes til tops of bread are crispy.

Remove from oven then pick at it while you wait for the chicken to cook.

Then serve with chicken, potato, and carrots that you are already too full to eat.

Chad, checking the chicken

Unless you are Chad, who has the metabolism of a bird and the capacity of a human waste disposal.

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