Archive for April, 2012

April 30, 2012

Day 171

Thai-Style Chili Sauce

I used this in a stir-fry. But, since I only used one tablespoon, it didn’t make much of an impression. So I stuck my finger in the jar and scooped up a taste. This is most definitely something old Niki would have never, ever done. (Plus it’s a little sketchy, hygiene-wise.) I survived, though. Straight out of the jar, it was a bit sweet for my taste. But I can see it starring in a fine stir-fry. Just have to kick it up a notch next time.

April 29, 2012

Day 170

Semolina Quinoa Spinach Cakes

For my first introduction to semolina I used this recipe from Food & Wine. Despite the impression I give to the left, mine were a lot rounder and crumblier than the pretty square ones they have in the magazine. And it was quite a project — not something you can just whip up on a whim. Was it worth it? Meh. Needed more … something. Maybe they were just a little too tame after my walk on the wild side last night.

April 28, 2012

Day 169

Slutty Pasta

Puttanesca sauce — supposedly born of Italian whores — double-teamed me: I was exposed to both capers and anchovies in one night. (There’s supposed to be olives in there too, but I refused. I’ve tried those little bastards every which way. Just don’t like ’em.) Anyway, this strumpet snack was great. I’ll be visiting that corner again real soon.

April 27, 2012

Day 168

Mozzerella/Soppressata Roll

When I looked at this I thought I would have to cook it. The meat was red and red meat is supposed to be cooked, right? But my husband told me, no, it’s like salami, you just eat it. I’ve never had salami, so the description didn’t help in the least. Since I was still unconvinced, he flash-fried a slice for me and slapped it on a saltine. Not exactly fine dining, but pretty good. Would be lovely scattered on pizza.

April 26, 2012

Day 167

Goat’s Milk Caramel with Sea Salt

I always feel a little guilty when I count a treat as a day’s try — like I’m cheating if I’m not tackling head cheese or something. But this was definitely a new experience: not only have I never tried goat’s milk (although I did give goat’s cheese a go back on Day 48), I was also ignorant of any caramel that didn’t come in mass-market candy bars or little plastic-wrapped cubes in the baking aisle. This cube came from Asgaard — a nearby farm once owned by artist Rockwell Kent — and it was much better than those supermarket jobbies. The lovely sprinkling of salt nuggets was especially nice.

April 25, 2012

Day 166

Pickled Daisy Buds

What fun! Food-of-the-day Kelly brought these back from a weekend in Montreal (yes, our closest city is in another country). No one from the office had ever tried them, either. So it was a group sample. Thumbs up all around for these tiny vinegar bombs with just a smidge of sweet.

April 24, 2012

Day 165


I always suspected I would eat roadkill one day. I just thought I’d be a lot older and more impoverished. (Since I have zero money saved and it’s iffy that my kids will like me in another 20 years, my retirement plan includes a lot of scavenging.) But this little guy wandered in front of a friend’s truck and — voilà — roadkill in the freezer ahead of schedule. Round here, that’s like winning the locavore lottery, but I wasn’t so thrilled. I had one run-in with a venison steak in college — late-night, pan-fried in a dorm. Didn’t go well. I can’t remember how it tasted, but it smelled like holy hell. That was the same smell I was treated to when this hood ornament was frying up. (My husband claimed it smelled good, but he isn’t offended by his feet, either.) After getting past that, and the idea of highway tenderized meat, it was somewhat edible. But I think I’ll let my husband finish up the remains.

April 23, 2012

Day 164

Dill Pickle Potato Chips

I’ve hardly ever met a chip I didn’t like. ‘Cept for Salt & Vinegar. That should have given me a clue that this vinegar-based food wouldn’t do it for me as a chip. Live and learn.

April 22, 2012

Day 163

Crunchy Pork Kimchi Burgers

(It’s sitting on a bed of baby spinach, if you’re wondering what those booger-colored things are underneath.) I found this recipe in Food & Wine, the magazine I accidently renewed for the next seven years. (Don’t ask. Wine drinkers don’t have the best memories.) It’s a genius idea: stuff ground meat with kimchi and scallions and other good things, then bread and fry up the patties. I even kind of liked the sesame/ginger mayo I whipped up with it — and I don’t do mayo.

April 21, 2012

Day 162

Havarti Cheese

The cheese aisle is a strange and confusing place. I try to limit my exposure to curdy things … I’ll eat American slices in a grilled sandwich (the real kind, not the oil-based cheese food in planet-killing individual wrappers) and I’ll eat mozerrella on almost anything, but that’s just about as far as I’ll go. Maybe a blend of pepper jack and cheddar in a mac-n-cheese (a dish that I boycotted for decades before I started making it myself). I grabbed havarti in a new-food shopping blitz, but I had to look it up when I got home. I was hoping I could swap it into a grilled cheese (because eating uncooked cheese is generally out of the question — a chalky mess). The internet assured me it would melt, so a couple slices of buttered bread later I was digging in to an almost exact replica of my normal American-filled grilled cheese. A bit anticlimactic, but not unpleasant.