Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Hurry-up, out-the-door supper

An artist friend is having an opening of his work tonight. The gallery's a good hour from here, so we're just about running out the door.

Sunday's squash cooked itself into a bit of soup. The leftover pizza was approaching its due date, so that was added to the menu. The last of the greens went into a salad.

That means it's time to hit the road -- off to look at paintings!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Rainy night, lazy supper

I knew I wanted something in the oven to make the day feel cozier. But what to make? I didn't feel like lifting a finger.

Happily, our housesitter didn't eat all the easy treats I'd left, so we're having chicken breasts stuffed with ham and cheese.

The rice has onions and coral mushrooms for flavour. Fresh asparagus (I keep trying to think spring) and salad are tonight's greens.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

First barbie of the season!

It was a beautiful spring day today. I managed to finish most of the pruning and cleaned up a couple of garden beds. So it seemed like the right night to kick off the barbecue season.

The steaks were accompanied by some fresh oysters. To the salad, I added nice hunks of the proverbial blue (bleu?) cheese. Chunks of baguette leftover from last night's supper, and we were set.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

New twist on an old favourite

When I was in the butcher shop yesterday, I noticed an item I'd never seen before: drumettes. Not the usual eensy chicken ones. These were turkey drumettes, and they are large.

If you haven't used or seen drumettes before, they're the top (meatier) portion of the wing. I guess in human anatomy, it would be the humerus.

It's a family supper tonight, and a Saturday at that, so a big pot of Turkey Cacciatore is what we're having. Whole wheat pasta, some steamed cauliflower and a baked squash -- so there are lots of choices for what to pour it over.

Salad, a baguette and then a fruit crisp (last of the peaches and raspberries from the freezer) for dessert.

My favourite people are always a great excuse for making a nice meal.

Friday, March 27, 2009

TGI Pizza Night!

For an awful lot of Fridays, pizza was our traditional standby. I'm not sure what happened to break that, but here we are, starting the tradition again. (Maybe. Who knows what we'll have next week?)

I bought an oven-ready cheese pizza when I shopped today. I knew we had some anchovies left over from Monday night's spectacular Caesar salad. Plenty of fresh vegies: mushrooms and beautiful green peppers, as well as some tomato bits left from last night. Some Italian sausage and even bits of ham. Definitely, a pizza with the works.

And yes, that's avocado chunks next to the salad. They're delicious squished on top of the hot pizza.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Buffalo gals...

. . . or not quite. It's actually buffalo burgers . . . only not quite those either.

It's buffalo meat patties, but I didn't have buns to serve them on, so maybe they're not really even burgers, but buffalo sandwiches.

There was a gigantic yam in the pantry, so I sliced that into strips, tossed them with oil, and let the supper bake itself in the oven.

With a few fried-up onions with mushrooms, a sliced-up tomato and some cottage cheese --presto -- there's supper.

Won't you come out tonight...and dance by the light of the moon?

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Creamy Green Sauce for a Spring Day

It's been a while since I've had pasta, so I was hungry for it. After all, it's one of the major food groups, isn't it?

So tonight it's tortellini with a creamy sauce full of mushrooms. But instead of its usual pale appearance, the sauce is looking quite green in honour of the still-new season. I spiked it up by adding an almost-pesto sauce I made from fresh basil, garlic and olive oil.

The salad has some basil leaves tossed into it too. Happy spring!

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Liver and perogies

Weird, I guess, but this is one of my all-time fave suppers. These are chicken livers, baked with garlic and olive oil.

The perogies are better than store-bought, though no, I didn't make 'em. They were part of a barter I managed at Christmas time with a friend.

The red cabbage not only makes a bright colour contrast, the sharp flavour balances the rest of the meal.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Plain supper, home sweet home

Because it was a day for unpacking, doing laundry and trying to catch up on emails and phone messages, supper was a matter of what was around.

While the washer and dryer ran, a pot of lentil soup simmered on the stove. And happily, there was one lemon and just enough lettuce to assemble a Caesar salad.

Satisfying. And good to be home.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Sabado/Saturday supper in the town square

The man with the tamales was in town tonight. Choices were chicken, pork, poblano with cheese, and even a dessertish one with a filling made of cornmeal and strawberries.

The hot dog stand was also open. Hot dogs, si, but how often do they come with onions cooked with bacon? Or for that matter, with hot peppers.
More strolling led to the taco place where the guys sat down for a soft taco and a quesadilla each. Me, I was more adventurous and had a sweet-cooked yam, sold from the charming venue of a wheelbarrow a woman was pushing down the street.

Tomorrow will be a tricky one -- no laptop and connecting flights that won't put us home until after midnight. It might be a missed day for "what's fer supper" -- although it's likely the supper won't be one to brag about.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Friday stroll

Today, one of our last days in this village, has been one of many tastes. Fresh oysters on the beach in the afternoon, the evening spent strolling the streets of town, checking out which vendor's made what. 

I settled on a bowl of posole -- a beautiful soup filled with hunks of hominy. This batch wasn't made with the usual chicken or pork, it was filled with gigantically fat (and superbly fresh) prawns. Piled high with chopped cabbage, the bowl wore its own serving of salad.
I am happy and filled. Buenas noches

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Anniversary Potluck

There's a potluck supper party tonight for a couple who've been married 38 years. Any pair together that long understands that a relationship is a kind of potluck. A little of this, sometimes too much of that. But when it endures 38 years, the mix must be just about right.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I love it that we don't always know what supper will be. With street food it depends on who's in town and who's selling what on a particular evening.

We ended up at a place along the town square. It was a place where we saw everything as it was being made, from the tortillas to the barbecued pork -- or the course we were too full to try, sausages and fried cibollas (onions).

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

San Patricio y Melaque

The town was filled with celebrators. Although it feels as though we missed out on a chance for a range of street food, we had a lovely and muy civilized meal in one of San Patricio's restaurants.

In keeping with the date, the tablecloths (yes, tablecloths -- are we talkin' high end here, or what?!) were sprinkled with bits of green glitter and tiny shining shamrocks.
I chose fish (though I'm not sure what kind it was -- maybe snapper?) in ajo (garlic) sauce. The sauce proved strong enough that I shouldn't have any need for mosquito repellant for the rest of our stay. But hey, garlic is one of my middle names, so I was happy.

Monday, March 16, 2009


Well, that's not the real name for it, but that's what folks here call the tacos on the street. I guess because the family that runs the place spends so much time chop-chop-chopping the tomatoes and onions and other bits you get to throw onto your supper. Yum-yum. 

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Tropical paradise, homestyle

The friends we are staying with know how to make beautiful food. Tonight we're eating 'in' and having chicken that was 'breaded' with chunks of fresh coconut, then simmered in a spicy curry sauce. Rice and Greek salad round out the meal and make us feel very welcome indeed. For now, we're enjoying ourselves and moving slowly, definitely on Mexico time. 

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Once in a blue burger

No, that's not really right. The burger wasn't blue. It was definitely cooked, but instead of the more traditional cheddar or Swiss topping, it's covered with blue cheese. Or should that be bleu? Although where I'm in Mexico, maybe it should be azul? It's known here as the "Jane Burger" and is apparently named after a patron who first made the request. Whatever, it was delicious, and I'm happy to just be rolling along with the plan.

Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday night at the beach

Today was the day we moved on to the village of La Manzanilla. The drive was long, but we're comforted by the sound of waves and by one of my most favourite foods, chiles rellenos. Good food, good friends, and the beach to top it off -- really, this is hard to beat.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Girls' Night In

After a day of wandering an array of galleries and markets and shops, a quiet little supper of salad, bread and cheese looks like about all these two weary girls are up for. Oh yes, the last wee bit of yesterday's carnitas tossed on top. Buena noche.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Fresh from the Market

Today was a day for wandering the tianguis -- the travelling market that was in 'our town', Ajijic, today. Among other treats, we found gorgeous tomatoes, an avocado that was perfect, and a freshly baked baguette -- all of which went towards our supper on the patio.

The dish to the right is carnitas, bits of cooked pork that are similar to hard-cooked bacon. The dark liquid on the little dish is a gorgeously rendered-down balsamic vinegar sauce -- a treat my pal brought south from a specialty shop in Whistler, B.C.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

South of the borders

It was a long haul, but here I am in Mexico, listening to the sound of cicadas and just about ready to hit the bed. Our little supper was just the thing for three amigas who haven't seen each other for a while: crackers and two kinds of cheese, homemade pickles and a bottle of wine. Cheers to lazy days!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Monday night farewell

I'm leaving tomorrow, at dawn no less, for some lazy time in the sun. Who knows whether I'll be able to keep reporting on what my suppers are. All I can promise is that I'll try.

But tonight, while I'm packing, it's going to be Greek food. I'm heating up the last batch of the summer's lamb dolmades, baking a little lamb rack that had been lolling in the freezer, and rounding it out with some premade (needing only to be baked) calimari.

I added some grated cuke to a bit of store-bought dip and ranch dressing -- not quite tzatziki, but with a sprinkle of dill and some garlic, it will have to do. I did make some fresh homous, so that will help. A salad with feta cheese, and that'll do it. Whew! No wonder I'm going on hols...

Sunday, March 8, 2009

The comfort of a standby

Tonight we're both feeling tired. Partly from being out all weekend, partly from the shift to Daylight Savings Time. Partly from having eaten so much rich food yesterday.
Whatever the reason, all we were up for tonight was the comfort of hot chicken broth with wontons and baby bok choy.
Easy too.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Night out in the city

Tonight is a special treat -- supper at a friend's place -- and the friend happens to be one of the best cooks I know. He claims tonight's meal is not very fancy, but I'm beginning to doubt that. This decision is based partly on his track record, partly on the fact that he's mentioned two of my favourite words, polenta and duck.
The last time I had duck was at a birthday party in July, so that alone sounds like a spectacular (spec-quack-ular?) treat.
No photos possible until tomorrow. System here is too unfamiliar. Besides, the smells wafting into this little room are telling me it's time to be ready to eat!
PS Next day: the photo above was our first course at table, and appeared after several rounds of delightful appies in the living room. This avocado and shrimp salad is surrounded (clockwise) by tidbits of Dungeness crab claw, marinated seaweed, smoked salmon and smoked tuna, beet terrine, and teriyaki sablefish. And like I said, this was only the first course.
We also had the promised duck -- breast meat in a wonderfully rendered cherry sauce -- accompanied by steamed pea pods and an oniony polenta, otherwise known by its Romanian name, mamaliga.

After that there was a cheese course followed by fruit salad and baklava for dessert.

The video shows Peter engaged in one of the final steps as he prepares the corn meal dish.

Friday, March 6, 2009

Mexican Friday

I guess I must be practising for going south on holiday next week. Yes, Mexico, and after this winter, am I ever ready!

This afternoon I went to the freezer and pulled out a container of buffalo chili I'd made before Christmas. But a simple bowl of chili didn't sound like quite enough. So I rolled the chili in tortillas, poured a sauce over top, sprinkled on some cheese, and popped it into the oven.

There was part of a jar of salsa in the fridge. Freshening it up with some of that local fresh cilantro makes a big difference to it. Adding some salad greens, it's voila! Although oops, that's French, not Spanish at all. Guess I'll have to get out my little dictionary so I can do better next week.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Cooperative supper

Already this morning I knew: it was a mac 'n cheese kind of night. But when I stopped uptown for bread and milk, my eye landed on two very fresh-looking trout. Done. Then there was still a good chunk of broccoli in the fridge, so bingo -- pasta, fish and veg. They all just seemed to cook themselves as any good cooperative supper always ought to.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

Spicy mid-week special

It's never good to let life get dull. But there's no chance of anything like that tonight. I decided to use up a little jar of green curry paste, so I got a bit of pork out of the freezer this morning.

When I cooked up the meat, I added garlic and onions, then broccoli and baby bok choi. The curry paste was rounded out with some coconut milk and fish sauce. Because cilantro is still one of the only fresh greens supplied locally, lots of that went in at the end, along with some lovely whole almonds. Oh yes, a lonely baked potato was sitting in the fridge, so that too got added into the mix.

Pretty mixed-up and wow, very spicy! Still, no one can say mid-week is boring around here.

Oh, and the little golden circle? That's a bracelet from Thailand that bears this positive message, both in Thai and in English: Long live the King.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

I know that it's spring...

...because asparagus is on sale. Finally, it's half the price of what it's been all winter. With such a nice fresh veg, I don't feel so bad that the rest of the meal is store-bought frozen or boxed. Chicken breasts stuffed with broccoli and cheese (or some such facsimile) and the trusted cheesy potatoes.

I did doctor up the potatoes with onion and dried wild mushrooms. And yes, there's a salad, but isn't there always?

Monday, March 2, 2009

Monday night leftovers

What a treat to be able to have such an easy supper! We had such a bunch of leftovers from last night, all I had to do was divide it up and heat it in the oven.

Because I had a few chick peas/garbanzo beans in the fridge, I used them to make a bit of homous to go with the pita breads. I added feta cheese to the salad, and it was all as easy as if we were back at the restaurant.

Okay, there are dishes to wash in the kitchen, but who knows, maybe someone from the restaurant will show up and look after those too??

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Birthday goes Opa!

Our Sunday night supper was a birthday party. Because I'd been out at the prison all day again, it meant we had to celebrate at a local restaurant. Although we all shared around, family-style, I ordered a plateful of decadence, calimari. Probably not great on the cholesterol scale, but not something I make at home, so one of those tasty now-and-then treats.