If you don’t feel like lifting a finger this holiday season, check out the list of places you can eat on Christmas Eve and Day. It’s beautiful. And updated.
Lesley, our Happy Hostess, also has recipes over here for those of you who like to make Christmas dinner from scratch.
Tamales seem to me a rather odd Christmas tradition, if only because I would happily eat one (or more) on any other day, any time of the year. The same can’t be said for the palatability of some of the other trappings of Christmastime. It goes beyond palatability, even – there’s a safety concern here. If you hand somebody egg nog in April, you might get punched in the face. If you jam out to Mannheim Steamroller in July*, you’ll likely be institutionalized – and for good reason.
But tamales are good all the time, and Christmas is as good an excuse as any to indulge. This recipe is about as uncomplicated (and probably gringo-y) as tamale making gets, so if you’re an experienced tamale maker…. well, why are you reading a recipe for tamales? You should really spend your time more wisely. But for the novice, this is a good place to start. These also freeze well, so if you don’t have anything to do a couple of weeks before Christmas (hint, hint)…1 Comment »
I don’t know much about quinoa. I know that, inexplicably, it’s pronounced KEEN-wah. I have also heard whisperings that it comes from South America and it’s the reigning Healthiest Grain in the World. (Suck it, oats.) But that’s it. Whether or not quinoa existed prior to 2011 is really a gray area for me. In the meantime, however, it has carved out quite the culinary celebrity.*
I’m always skeptical of these buzzed-about fad foods, but it turns out quinoa is pretty, pretty good. It’s delicious, really. It has a strong flavor for a grain (seed, technically), nutty and earthy, with a texture akin to hominy grits getting it on with couscous. All good things.
My first stab at using quinoa was a cold chicken salad with some pomegranate – a couple of so-called super foods mixing it up, no big whoop. It was bright, fresh, and delicious. For whatever reason, it got me thinking it would be interesting to desecrate a holiday favorite – stuffing/dressing – by building it around quinoa. So I did, and it rules. It does not taste like you’re eating anything nutritious, which is usually a good thing, right?
Anyway, I couldn’t decide which recipe to go with, so here’s both. Enjoy.1 Comment »
It’s an awkward week for recipe bloggists — big holiday last week, Christmas isn’t for a month. Sigh. There’s nothin’ to do, man*! What am I gonna talk about, cheeky uses for Thanksgiving leftovers? You know years in advance the kinds of depraved things you’re going to do with your leftovers; you don’t need me to remind you that tacos are in play.
Alas, there’s a job to be done here. I’m not that big into snacking**, so I wouldn’t usually get too excited about something like chips. Likewise, I try to dispense with the superlatives in regard to my own recipes. Whatever, walls are coming down today.
These are the best mother-expletiving chips I’ve ever had.
Continue reading "Look What I Made: Root Veggie Chips"
Ryan Conner over on D Home has consulted with Liza Garza, owner of Sissy’s Southern Kitchen & Bar, on her favorite tools and recipes for Thanksgiving. Check out Garza’s five spice brined turkey and easy peasy squash casserole.
“Spatchcocking” is just the fun way to tell people you’re butterflying a bird, by taking out its backbone. Why would you do such a thing? Well, it’s much easier than it may sound, and your chickens and turkeys will cook quickly and evenly — cutting the time almost in half.
5 Comments »
I love Thanksgiving. Food, family, not working on a Thursday, football. Food. Thanksgiving has it all.* Unless you’re planning on doing some banking, mailing of letters or fasting, in which case you’re sadly out of luck. Still, the food.
The thing I don’t particularly like about Thanksgiving is actually… some of the food. Awkward! Look, I dig turkey, mashed potatoes, turducken stuffed with stuffed jalapenos, all of that. But green bean casserole is not something I think of as being terrifically edible. Yeah, I know, that’s un-American. Fine. It’s just that I have a shaky history with green beans. We’re only now getting to a place where there’s trust.2 Comments »
Well, the election is over. Finally. I, for one, am relieved. Now we all can get back to concentrating on what’s really important: eating enough food so that we don’t starve* and watching cat videos on the internet.
I think I can help with that – the food part, anyway.
Oven dried (or sun dried) tomatoes, like pickles, are a food accessory. They’re more than a garnish, and they’re great to have around because you can incorporate them into so many things (sauces, salads, pasta, hummus, cream cheese, etc). While there are a few decent brands of sun dried tomatoes you can buy at the grocery store, the homemade variety, by comparison, is on flavor steroids, taking both the tartness and sweetness to an obscenely delicious level. And that’s just with tomatoes I picked up at Fiesta; I can only imagine how good homegrown would be.
Anyway, enjoy the recipe and – while you can – the break from the rhetoric, because I think the 2016 election cycle starts up in a couple of months…1 Comment »
Just like that, summer, the State Fair, Halloween… all gone for another year. Not to mention poor Big Tex, who’s gone forever to talking statue Heaven.
Anyway, Thanksgiving isn’t for three more weeks, and it’s a huge undertaking, so I’m taking the week off (cue Ferris Bueller music). Yep, even dudes who write recipes for leisure have to take a break from the kitchen every now and then.*
This week you get an entry I’ve been holding onto for awhile. Fortunately, it’s for croissants, which I think we can all agree are buttery, delicious, and awesome. And while this recipe is pretty involved, the intoxicating smell of a fresh baked batch of croissants coming out of your oven is worth it on its own. Enjoy.3 Comments »
I don’t know who this governing body is that keeps sanctioning food holidays, but I understand that Friday marks the observance of National Chicken Fried Steak Day. Or something like that.
I have to say that I find national well-liked food days to be a bit on the goofy, self-congratulatory* side, although I suspect that stance is exactly what got me blackballed from joining the food holiday governing body. Even still, the shame of having missed national burger day, taco day and, yes, even Denver omelette day gnawed at me. So when I got word that chicken fried steak day was a thing, I was eager to exploit it in the name of SideDish.2 Comments »
I like pork shoulder. Like a lot. I don’t know what it is… Pigs just have tastier shoulders than the other animals. Sometimes I find myself going to the store just to buy pork shoulder – not because I need it, because I’m bored.
Chili is the same way. Nothing to do for several hours? Chili-making time. Procrastinating on writing blog entries for SideDish? Chili-making time. But making the same chili over and over again is – forgive me, chili purists – dull. What makes chili interesting to me is its boundless adaptability. You can add more of this or substitute some of that. And there’s always a secret ingredient lurking about that you haven’t tried yet. The pursuit itself, whether perfecting an old recipe or figuratively rebooting the franchise, can become as much an obsession as the outcome.
Jump with me.3 Comments »
It’s Texas-OU weekend. I hope you didn’t need to use I-35E anytime soon. The Red River Shootout is the biggest game of the year and college football’s greatest rivalry, and it’s all happening right here in our own backyard. (And probably your front yard if you live off Lower Greenville.)
For me, personally, attending college football games is a bit much. I can stand and yell for three hours or I can start drinking at ten in the morning, but I’m too old to do both at the same time. I tip my cap to those willing to brave the elements at the game – the hordes of frat kids and fair-goers, the 11am kickoff, the Cotton Bowl itself – but come Saturday I’ll be comfortably indoors at a watching party, stuffing myself (spoiler alert: with pie), having a beverage or two, and hopefully cheering Texas to a one-sided victory.
Jump for some sexy pie-making action.3 Comments »
There’s a reason why the pecan tree is the official state tree. (Mob connections, maybe?) They’re also located, conveniently enough, all over*- including a gigantic pair right behind my apartment.4 Comments »
The State Fair starts tomorrow. I can’t compete with that. But I always say if you can’t beat ‘em, become a third party candidate, say a bunch of crazy stuff and ride the wave of publicity. So this week I’m going the opposite direction of fair foods. Anti-fair fare. Cheap, not fried, and meatless. Don’t worry, though; it’s filled with ricotta so you won’t become dangerously thin from eating it.
I don’t write a lot about pasta, because I almost never eat it. I’m continuing this trend, considering that this “ravioli” is made from wonton wrappers, not pasta. It’s a substitution that works well – especially if your ambition level lies somewhere between pasta from scratch and pasta from a box. I’ll be the first to admit that this is perhaps not the most attractive ravioli. (It’s in that awkward phase between being ravioli and being a steamed dumpling). In fact, you may run the risk of ridicule if your “cool” friends come by and catch you hanging out with this dish. Adults can be so cruel. But the joke’s on them because this ravioli is delicious, quick and surprisingly light for something made of dough and stuffed with cheese. Plus, it has freaky powers and will enact revenge. Enjoy.
I don’t know where or when the great sweet potato fry deluge began. One day sweet potato fries are a novelty on bar menus, the next you can order them at (wait for it…) Burger King. It just… it all happened so fast. Not that I’m complaining. I love a good french freedom fry, but after consuming roughly eleventy billion of them over the years, it’s nice to have options. An option, anyway.
For the make-your-own-food crowd, sweet potato fries present, shall we say, a challenge. Simply put, sweet potatoes are way effin’ different than potatoes. They have different levels of starch and sugar and water, so you have to treat them differently than potatoes to yield similar results.3 Comments »
I like fried pies. They remind me of, well, eating fried pies and enjoying it.
Like Snakes on a Plane, “fried pie” kind of says what it needs to say — even without the very loud help of Samuel L. Jackson — which is perfect because I don’t have much else to say about them, other than aah-(indecipherable)-hom-nom-nom, which is the self-congratulatory sound of bulldozing one into my face. Sadly, it loses something in print.
Plums are at the tail end of their harvest, hence the plums. Also, the weekend forecast is calling for highs around 80, basically winter, perfect pie frying weather. Now, I realize I’ve done a lot of frying here lately (exhibits A and B), and I won’t apologize for that. I will, however, offer an excuse — Nancy tortures me if I miss a deadline* — and a promise that I won’t do anything fried for awhile. Sigh. I guess.
As of last night, football season is on again, and with the Rangers poised to win the AL West yet again, it’s good times all around for the local sports enthusiast.
And for those who aren’t into sports, there are always food blogs.
Luckily, we all need food to keep from dying, so in that respect, food and football go hand in greasy, sauce-stained hand. Football, of course, means grilling (honorable mention: chicken wings). This season, we’re starting with some lighter fare: salmon burgers. You’ve got until early February to gorge yourself on burgers, dogs, brats and whatever else your inner fan demands. No need to overdo it.
Oh and do yourself a favor and buy beer for the game on Saturday. Kickoff and the start of beer sales on Sundays are, cruelly, at the same time. Don’t become another statistic. Continue reading "Look What I Made: Salmon Burger Recipe"1 Comment »
I’m not one of these wide-eyed, narrow arteried, “bacon makes everything better” optimists. Admittedly, bacon does, in fact, make most things better (notably life), but things like bacon cereal, bacon vodka and chicken fried bacon are all best left, well, uninvented.
I grew up in a bacon loving house, among a bacon-loving people,* and while I usually enjoy bacon in the standard, plated form, I can’t help but think from time to time, “Oooh, bacon on that would be good.” As such, I can relate to the sometimes ill-advised inclination to overdo a good thing (or disguise a bad one**) by adding bacon to it — the line between bacon decency and bac-insanity is so vague, you may not know it when you’ve crossed it.
Continue reading "Look What I Made: Maple Bacon Glazed Donuts Recipe"
Nancy – I was wondering if you knew or if you could ask the great people on SideDish where one might be able to find Fearing’s Texas Mop Sauce. You can buy it on-line from the Canyon Foods but I am trying to avoid the shipping costs. Central Market used to carry it but for some reason I have been told they have stopped carrying it. This stuff is very addicting and tough to cook a steak without it once you have tried it and unfortunately my last bottle has run dry.Any help would be greatly appreciated.
We love it too because it reminds us of Shimmer!4 Comments »
It’s Hatch green chile season, or so I’ve heard (can’t remember where), so I thought I would pander to that crowd this week, in the form of grilled grits with poached egg and Hatch chile cream.
As usual, when I do food from New Mexico, I like to throw in something shaped like Texas — people find that kind of thing “cute,” whatever the hell that means, and, though I can’t prove it, I’m pretty sure foods shaped like Texas are more nourishing than those shaped like other states. If the picture didn’t give it away, eggs get the Texas treatment this time. Of course, you can poach your eggs like normal (I guess), just, whatever you do, don’t try to shape them like Delaware. That would look and taste bad.
P.S. I threw in some fried stuff for no real reason. Enjoy!
Continue reading "Look What I Made: Texas Shaped Food Part II"