Archive for September, 2010
Back in the winter of 2000, I had the opportunity to live and teach scuba diving on a tiny island off the East Coast of Thailand called Koh Tao. Koh Tao is the furthest North in a small island chain in the Gulf of Thailand, consisting of Koh Saumui (anyone seen Meet the Parents?), Koh Phangan, and Koh Tao (translated, it means Turtle Island). It was, to put it mildly, paradise. My beachfront, private bungalow was $5/night, and the food was incredible. This may be one of the reasons that I don’t cook Thai food very often…because there is absolutely no way that I could begin to replicate the dishes that I ate over the course of that winter, and I most times don’t even want to attempt it.
That being said, I have no problem making a spicy Thai peanut sauce. Why? Because while I was there I never once ate a spicy peanut sauce. I want to say that it’s an American adaptation to Thai food, because while they cooked with peanuts quite often on Koh Tao, they were always left whole and cooked into a dish, or crumbled on top of pad Thai. Peanut butter was not a staple on the island, so I feel no compunction about cooking this meal. And while it certainly can’t be called “authentic”, it had a lot of the flavors that I remember, and was, in short, delicious. And it’s super easy, and quick.
In the vein of using sour cream in alternative ways, I wanted to share a recipe that has been in my Mom’s family for generations. This is a cookie that I grew up eating, and I have very fond memories of these. Soft, creamy, like cake, with a sprinkling of cinnamon and sugar on top. I’m not much of a baker, as those of you who know me might have already figured out, but after making the sour cream pancakes the other day I was determined to bake up a batch of these cookies for old times’ sake.
Quesadillas are one of my favorite snack foods, because I almost always have the ingredients around to throw one together. Flour tortillas keep forever in the fridge, and if you have cheese, some vegetables, leftover chicken or beef of any kind, salsa, hot sauce, sour cream, or any combination thereof, you probably have enough things to whip up a great quesadilla.
If you’ve been reading frequently, you will know that it’s blue crab season in Connecticut. Last weekend I pulled two dozen from the water in about 30 minutes, which wound up being far too many for two people to eat in one sitting. After picking out the remaining crab meat, the obvious choice was to make crab cakes. Behold, a breakfast fit for kings:
This past weekend at the Cape I woke up early and decided to make some pancakes. Unfortunately I didn’t have any milk at the house, but we did have a large tub of sour cream. Remembering vaguely a recipe for sour cream pancakes, I did a quick search online and found a wonderful-looking recipe from Smitten Kitchen for sour cream pancakes. I had to give them a shot.
Last weekend I was at my marina in Connecticut and I saw a friend of mine pulling something out of the water with a net on the dock across from me. Upon further inquiry, I found him with a big bucket of blue crabs, plucked fresh from the water. I immediately grabbed my net, and went to work. How can you pass up fresh blue crabs?
I stumbled across this site via a blog I read…and couldn’t help laughing. If you don’t know what to make for dinner, and you’re mad enough to swear about it, you should probably visit this site.
**Warning: STRONG, BLUNT LANGUAGE.**
This past weekend, for Labor Day, we cooked up 2 pork shoulders for tacos and pulled pork sandwiches. My friend Katherine Horsman was kind enough to send over her favorite pulled pork recipe, which is a citrus-based, spicy sauce that was absolutely delicious. Since we were doing two pork shoulders, I mixed up a batch of home made barbecue sauce for pulled pork sandwiches the next day. Behold the beauty of the pork shoulder:
I love cobbling together a breakfast from the odds and ends lying around in the fridge. Today I had extra chopped onions and peppers from our seafood feast, a couple potatoes, eggs, bacon, and plenty of cheese. A modified frittata with a home fry crust seemed to be the obvious choice for breakfast.
During my recent trip to San Francisco I stayed with my friends Ilse and Tommy in their home in the Haight-Ashbury district. To thank them for their hospitality I decided to cook them dinner the night before I left, and since I was wandering around down in the Fisherman’s Wharf district earlier that day, the obvious choice for a special dinner was fresh dungeoness crab.