While we lived in China—1988-1990—we would occasionally be invited to a family meal by our Chinese friends. One Chinese New Year, Mrs. Wong made us lion’s head meatballs—with her own family’s recipe. Lion’s head meatball is one of the good luck dishes of Chinese New Year’s. The big round meatball is meant to represents the lion guardian spirit that will protect you through the next year.
February 13th was Fat Tuesday and wife Jan asked for Louisiana food for dinner. She sent me several URLs for “Louisiana salads.” Some had ingredients that were very un-Louisianan. Others were very starchy—since I had decided on red beans and rice as my main dish, I wanted something a bit lighter.
Adapted from a The Guardian recipe
I have made a Moroccan chicken tajine before, but there is no set recipe for that title. This leaves open a wide variety of options in what to include in this dish. The last time I made this I heavily spiced the chicken, but in reading the discussion of The Guardian recipe, I learned that you may make it so that the chicken is the star attraction of this stew.
Several month ago, Eilene asked me to make Mac and Cheese sometime when her friends came over. While I have made this dish several times for her friends, this time she wanted something different. She wanted me to use pancetta, brie, apples, and almonds—instead of the usual cheddar or Emmentaler cheese. She also did not want me to use macaroni, but some kind of spiral pasta. Since, I am always sneaking in more vegetables, I also added some leek to the mix.
Whenever I make a Japanese feast I usually include miso soup. The soup broth itself is quick and easy to make, by itself it is simply dashi—a Japanese soup base—with some miso added for flavoring. After that, you may add pretty much anything you have available. Today, I decided on bay scallops, tofu, enoki mushrooms, green onion, and I happened to have some daikon sprouts, because I had also made hamachi shots for this meal.