Saturday, September 29, 2007

So what did I do this weekend?

Woke up Saturday, had some coffee.

Headed out to do the shopping... with a special stop. They opened up a Crate & Barrel dangerously close to me. I could spend lots and lots of money in that store.

But I was a woman on a mission today, and there was only one thing I needed, the Wusthof Asian Edge Knife Sharpener, since my knives (not Wusthof, I've got two nice Henckels santoku knives that I use the most) are terribly, terribly dull. One just about looks like it'd be a hacked up knife some halloween-type killer would use to off victims. At the end of the movie. And since dull knife = dangerous, it's damned about covered with as much blood sometimes since I am not that skilled with knives to begin with.

So... picked that up, and decided that my outlook on the world is just a LOT better when I've got a Crate & Barrel bag in my hands. Did the weekly grocery shopping, where I didn't even pick up that much, since I know I've got TONS of stuff in the freezer that needs to get used. It's ridiculous. I could probably feed the two of us for two months off all the stuff in the freezer.

Yet again, I realized too late that I had forgotten to put my wedding band on before I went to the grocery store (still fighting a battle with a skin infection and my ring not being totally clean and happy). Guys... please. Yes, it can be a place to pick up women, but pay attention to the signs. A chick with greasy hair and a baseball cap is probably just there to do her errends. And not looking to get picked up. And if you can't control your bratty four year old, don't even THINK a woman is going to give you the time of day.

Got home, and the hubby was busy digging out the front window well. We've had some flooding in the basement since we moved in, due in part mostly to the damned window well in the front filling with water and then leaking thru the window into the basement. Good times, good times.

Used my sharpener... my GOD... is that thing great. How did I live without it??? It's like I've got new knives again. Soooo happy! I'm totally going back for the one for "regular" knives. The hubby even WANTS me to so he can sharpen up his swiss army knife.

He dug out at least six inches of dirt and finally happened upon the drain in the window well. Well, that 'splains it. We stood outside for awhile and admired his work. That's right people... my husband can use a shovel. AND a post digger, since he finally got the hose post thing I bought at the start of the summer into the ground.

He still had some errends to run, so he went off and I cleaned up a bit, and also started some prep work. Also heated up some mutter paneer (one of the benefits of a large Indian population in the area... even the big chain grocery stores carry some decent Indian products, including already made curries and such) and some frozen naan for a quick lunch. Yum yum.

I had some really nice tomatoes that were on their last legs, so I blanched them quickly so I could peel 'em and seed 'em. Also made some garlic confit. I bought some really nice lump crab at the grocery store, and because I'm cheap, I only bought one can of it. I figure sometime this week, I'll make some nice crab pasta with a tomato cream sauce, similar to one I made awhile back - some boiled down cream, tomato pulp and garlic confit. (Everyone... in your Ina Garten voice please.... How bad could that be?) I'd actually have made the crab & pasta this weekend, but I forgot I got some nice fresh corn at the farmer's market on Friday , and want to use that before it goes south on me. And I was going to make a chicken and some dressing on Sunday. Which mean corn and brats for dinner on Saturday.

Anyway... so made the tomato/cream sauce, and it might be able to take a bit more tomato. I did make some tomato confit on Sunday with some romas I got at the farmer's market, but I'll deal with fixing the sauce when I decide to make the dish during the week.

Brats, potatoes, corn and a nice salad for dinner on Saturday. Nothing exciting. I usually buy the "Already cooked" white brats, that's what the hubby likes best. And glad I did buy the pre-cooked brats, since my grill was pretty much out of gas and it was cooking on a low low flame. Oh, I did use some tarragon dijon on my brat. YUM. And had tarragon butter on my corn. YUM YUM. And mixed the remainder of the butter and dijon together to have with my chicken on Sunday.

Today was low-key. Meant to clean out my car, but totally forgot to (go me!) until this moment. Putzed around the kitchen... today's efforts were tomato confit (for use later in the week):

Also prepped everything for the cauliflower gratin from the Bouchon cookbook. Here is the food-processed stems and some shallots, bay leaf, thyme and parsley simmering away.....

The blanched cauliflower and the sauce w/the cream before it got topped with cheese and panko....

I've always wanted to try oyster stuffing, and here's a glamour food-porn shot of that.....

The simple roast chicken from the Bouchon cookbook, which is just a chicken in my cast-iron skillet and a sprinkle of Penzy's Sandwich Sprinkle......

And my kitchen sink by the time I was done with everything.......

And despite all that... it was not the best dinner. The chicken was good, it always is. The stuffing was not good. I am convinced, I am stuffing impared. I really should just stick with Stove Top, since it always turns out better than my efforts at stuffing. Seriously. I followed a recipe but it was still dry and just... not good. I suck at stuffing. Go me!
The cauliflower gratin?? Disappointing. Cauliflower was still a little too crunchy for my tastes. Flavor was great, but just not happy with how it came out as a whole. As soon as I post this, I'm going to dump the mess in to the food processor and see if I can't just make a nice soup out of it. It'd be nice to have it be a total waste.
The hubby ended up totally with a new supper, he didn't eat the chicken. He reheated leftover brats from yesterday. I greedily ate my chicken breast, but then ended up eating a Lean Cuisine in addition to that. Ah well. At least I have chicken bones and I can make some nice chicken stock this week. And I had a leftover breast that I can something with this week, which is good. Not a total loss.

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