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Deb Geisler
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December 2016
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Deb Geisler [userpic]
Cooking for two

In the non-tomato months, we buy hot-house specials...often cherry or grape tomatoes, or the very flavorful campari cocktail tomatoes. We had too many small campari tomatoes (that's a Wikipedia pic...these are about the size of golf balls), and they'd started to become wizened...what to do? You can toss them in sauce (since it doesn't matter for sauce if the flesh is at all firm), but we've got enough frozen sauce that we didn't need to make more, and I didn't want to waste the veggies.

The answer? Take the slightly wizened tomatoes, halve them, put them on a baking sheet, spray lightly with olive oil, lightly salt with sea salt, and bake them at 200°F for about 2.5 hours. Voila! You get great not-really-sundried tomatoes that go really well in lots of things. Put in some sort of container and refrigerate until needed.

Here they are, fresh out of the oven:

Note that these are actually quite small, and the pan itself is only 10" x 13".

Once they've been dried, these tomatoes have an amazingly intense flavor. Added to some garlic, olive oil, fresh spinach, and a bit of lemon juice and zest, they'll make a great dressing for cheese raviolis that are in the freezer. Serve them with chicken that's been in a lemon-oregano marinade. Mmmmmm.

Next, dinner tonight. I wanted Windy City tube-steaks (aka, Chicago-style hot dogs) for dinner. The dogs are substantial enough (with the base at .25 lb., plus many veggies and a roll) that one needs only a single side dish. We opted for potato salad, but we absolutely cannot trust deli potato salad not to be sweet. So we need to make potato salad...but not too much. One bag containing 8 small red potatoes for "steaming" turned out to be ideal.

In this small pot, the 5 potatoes look pretty big, but they are each only about 1/3 the size of a russet.

The other potatoes from the bag will be used later in the week with haricot verts and the usual to make......this sort of lovely Niçoise salad (photo is the one we had a few weeks ago)...


If you're in the neighborhood and want us to cook for you, of course, we'll make larger portions. :-)


what receipe do you use for potato salad?

Recipe? Hrm.

Well, I took the potatoes, boiled them, peeled them, chopped them up and let them cool. Added...some raw, finely minced onion, one diced hard-boiled egg, some diced red pepper, salt, dried mustard, dill seed, and then bound it all together using mayo that had been well mixed with a small amount of cider vinegar.

I could maybe give you measurements, but they'd all be lies.