Oscars!

Feb. 27th, 2011 11:02 am
eurydicebound: (Sherlock)
Matt's doing a Oscars post, so it seemed as though I should too.

We're doing an Oscars party tonight, you see. This is my first year of actually paying attention to the Academy Awards. I find it very strange to note that I've seen all the Best Picture, Supporting Actor/Actress, Best Actor/Actress, Animated Feature, Art Direction, Cinematography, Directing, Film Editing, Original Score, Sound mixing, and Adapted and Original Screenplays nominations. I've seen all but one Costume Design nomination (The Tempest being the sadly missing one), all but one Vis[livejournal.com profile] innocent_man's LJ, if not here (I'm terribly bad about photo posts).

So, the menu:

Drinks
The Social Network -- Appletinis

Appetizers
The Fighter -- Beef Tartare
Winter's Bone -- Winter Salad (flowering kale, apple, endive lettuce, orange vinagrette, croutons)

Entrees
Black Swan -- Slow-cooked turkey breast with sage, onion, and thyme, with a duo of sauces: black mole and cinnamon-nutmeg bechamel.
The King's Speech -- Crown pork roast with stuffing

Sides
True Grit -- Smashed red potatoes with red-eye gravy
127 Hours -- Squash! (scalloped butternut squash)
The Kids Are All Right -- Artichokes, with garlic and lemon

Desserts
Toy Story 3 -- Cupcakes of some variety. Heather's making these, and they're a secret. There will apparently be some sort of Maple buttercream involved. I'm excited.
Inception -- Parfaits! (layers, you know.) Espresso-soaked ladyfingers, chocolate-kahlua curd, more ladyfingers, orange curd, more ladyfingers, whipped cream.

And now, without further ado, my picks for the Oscars:

Read more... )

Food!

Dec. 9th, 2010 11:09 am
eurydicebound: (pomegranate)
So, [livejournal.com profile] innocent_man has this thing wherein he recreates the TV show Chopped on Food Network. He does this by having nearby people pick four random foodstuffs, and then improvising dinner around them. Most recently he worked with a sort of golden ale, millet, onions, and blueberry-lime jam. The results were amazing, as his always are.

Afterward, Teagan asked if we could do Chopped dessert. Sarah, who was over for the evening, got roped into it as an assistant. She does not cook, however. Matt then went and picked ingredients with Teagan: limes, raspberry jam, and jelly bellies (courtesy of Teagan).* Teagan's solution was to get marshmallow fluff, put jelly beans in it, some sprinkles, and a bit of lime juice over the top. She reports that it was quite tasty. I could not eat that, though, as I would die of sugar shock, so I came over to help make an alternative.

We had leftover dried bread for stuffing from Thanksgiving, so I decided to make a bread pudding. I combined 4 eggs, milk, 1/2 cup sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a bowl and whisked that together. Sarah buttered a square baking dish and put the dried bread and some dried cranberries in it. I then poured the egg mixture over the bread and added a bit more milk, as it didn't seem there was enough liquid. We dotted the top with some margarine (damn you, lactose intolerance) and baked it at 350 for 30 minutes.

I then went over to the stove and got a saucepan out. I melted some margarine, added sugar and stirred until it dissolved, then put in the juice of two limes, a tablespoon of raspberry jam, a pinch of salt, about 1/4 tsp of ginger, a generous splash of key lime rum from the alcohol cupboard, and about a teaspoon of vanilla to round out the flavor. I let that simmer and reduce down a bit, stirring frequently.

When the pudding was done, it had a nice color on the top and was cooked through. Sarah dished it up, I spooned a generous bit of sauce over it, and voila! Vanilla and cranberry bread pudding with lime-raspberry and rum sauce. Not too bad for making it up as I went, really. Whew. It really was good, though.

*Yes, I left out the assorted jelly bellies. My tolerance for this game only goes so far, and I could not fathom what to do with them, other than put them in along with the cranberries, and just... ugh. :P Sue me. :)
eurydicebound: (kick)
Tonight we ventured further into the world of grilling with steak. Boneless top sirloin, to be exact, each one about 5, maybe 6 ounces, tops. Salted and peppered them on both sides and stuck it on the grill. I think in the end I may have cooked them a bit longer than I should have for how I normally like my steak, but it was still good -- and I have leftovers! Not sure what to do with steak leftovers, mind you, but I'm sure I'll come up with something.

Side dishes: cherry tomatoes and fried okra. It's the first time I've made fried okra since... well, maybe ever. In Oklahoma I could buy it frozen and pre-battered, and I've made that once or twice, but never from the beginning and never once I moved up here. Of course, I can't get that up here. Heck, I was shocked when I found okra at all in the freezer section -- probably helps that I live in a highly "ethnic" neighborhood, and the local Safeway realizes this and skews things accordingly. Anyway, so since fried okra is the only civilized way to eat it, I took it, dredged it in flour, then quick-fried it in a hot pan coated with cooking spray. It's still not the healthiest thing in the world, but it's normally considerably worse for you (deep fried!), so I take solace in that.

I think overall it was a success. I feel sorta bad that prior to this my Foreman grill had sat in a drawer for the better part of a year, but I'm doing my best to change that. Thus far, I think I'm being pretty successful.
eurydicebound: (domestic)
In an effort to stop eating out quite so frickin' much, I have resolved to cook more at home again, especially on the weekends when I have the time to do so. Tonight was my first attempt at a real meal for me in ages.

Not having a real grill but not wanting to cope with heating up the kitchen, I pulled out the George Foreman grill. I bought salmon on Friday as my default is to shy away from cooking protein and I want to break that habit.

I then found a recipe for Maple-Glazed Salmon on Cooking Light's website. I'm not hugely into maple, but I was willing to give it a shot. It turned out very well.

Recipe behind the cut. )

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