Wildly adapted from a Delish recipe
Sometimes a recipe comes from a cascade of little events. Today, I bought some soft pita bread for my wife—she has two temporary crowns and her usual pita chips would be too had for her to chew. Later, she decided—since we had pita bread—that what she really wanted for dinner was chicken shawarma. “Real” shawarma is roasted on a vertical spit, which is device that is out of the range of most home cooks. The meat for shawarma is also usually marinated for at least a day. How was I going to satisfy my wife in less than an afternoon?
Karl’s Quick Chicken Shawarma
Daughter Eilene is having friends over and she asked that I make sesame crackers. While these crackers are tasty and thoroughly addictive on their own, they do not constitute a meal. I decided to make some spinach dip and lay out some cheese and salami to round out the meal.
Karl’s Spinach Dip
Wife Jan just had temporary crowns put in, so she is having trouble chewing. I am planning to make a ham and sweet potato dinner—I will be mincing her portion of ham. Normally, I would simply steam some broccoli, but I suggested broccoli soup instead—wife agreed.
Karl’s Broccoli Soup
The last time I made this dish I left out the garlic and onions—daughter Miriam has not been handling alliums well lately. This time I am making it as a weekday dinner for those family members who love garlic and onions. I made a couple of changes—like using tomato paste and canned tomatoes, instead of fresh—to make things easier for me.
Karl’s Weekday Italian Wedding Soup
I was making mapo douf for dinner and I decided that a cucumber side dish would be nice. Since the last time I made this dish I discovered crispy chili oil. While using Sichuan chili oil would be an appropriate choice, it is such a production to make that a commercial version is sometimes useful to have on hand.
Karl’s Chinese Smashed Cucumber Pickles II
Loosely based on a King Arthur recipe
Panettone is a classic Italian Christmas sweet bread. It has been a dish non grata in our house for years—since I almost choked to death on a dry commercial one on a Christmas long ago. Wife Jan thought that if I made a fresh one I would not have that problem. I had my usual problems with other peoples recipes, the quantities seemed a little off and I changed the dried fruits to those we had/preferred.
While I am sure that our mothers did not invent the original dish, it was a common holiday treat in both of our house growing up. Sweet Medjool dates stuffed with crunchy peanut butter and dusted with powdered sugar says “Christmas” in our house. These are easy to make, but they do not last long—even when there are no children around. Wife Jan, of course, decided to improve on the recipe this year by adding some spice.
Jan’s Peanut Butter and Spice Stuffed Dates
A few months ago, I made challah rolls and crackers for one of my dinners. This weekend Jan asked for a crab feast, so I thought I would make this delicious bread again. Instead of making a classic braided loaf, I decided to make challah dinner rolls with half of my dough for Miriam. I turned the rest of the dough into crackers to please my wife. Of course, I could not make it exactly the same.
Karl’s Saffron Challah Dinner Rolls/Crackers II
Crab season just started and wife Jan asked for a crab dinner. Growing up, her family would cover the table with newspapers and feast on several crabs. Coleslaw is the obvious salad to go with a dinner like this.
Karl’s Colorful Coleslaw with Pecans and Crystallized Ginger
I am making Thanksgiving dinner and I had decided to have green beans as a side dish. However, I wanted something I could prep ahead and just pop under the broiler, when the turkey came out. Harcourt Verts are a thin French green beans that would be perfect for this purpose. Since I was using French green beans I thought that using fancy red d’Anjou pears would be a go together.
Note: I had a bit of a disaster. I was transferring my photos from my phone to my computer and I did not notice that not all of the pictures made it—they did however, delete from my phone when I cleaned it up. Continue reading