Author Topic: Best dinner in town is usually at home  (Read 988 times)

ACyclist

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Best dinner in town is usually at home
« on: November 09, 2017, 07:12:14 PM »
We live in a small town.  Dining out is not an inexpensive option for eating.  That seems very anti-moustachian.  If you or someone in your family is a great cook, you are often left disappointed.  Tell me a recipe or food ideas that you have used that is a winner.  I'll share some of mine as well.

Tonight, I made turkey, spinach feta burgers. This recipe for the burgers:

http://allrecipes.com/recipe/158968/spinach-and-feta-turkey-burgers/

I served them on flat bread and I make my own version of Tzatziki:

Tzatziki (forgive me, I don't measure)
greek yogurt
minced cucumber
mint (dried or fresh depending on season)
dill (dried or fresh, seasonal)
lemon or lime juice (your choice...I use what my mood tells me)
dash of garlic
liberal amount of good olive oil
cumin to taste
salt and pepper

Note:  If I posted this in the wrong zone, please forgive.

englishteacheralex

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #1 on: November 09, 2017, 07:29:56 PM »
I have several options that I consider as good as take out.

My favorite lately is thai yellow curry.

The secret is the Mae Ploy yellow curry that you can get off Amazon or at some thai restaurants. Or at a restaurant supply store or Whole Foods.

This is what I do:

Turn the Instant Pot on saute and put oil and yellow curry paste in with a tablespoon of turmeric for color. Add sliced yellow onions and some minced ginger if you have it. Let the onions turn translucent and super yellow with the spices. Add diced potatoes and diced chicken breast plus a can of coconut milk. Turn the instant pot on manual and cook for 5 minutes. When it's done, add a tablespoon of fish sauce and a tablespoon of brown sugar.

Bam. Thai yellow chicken curry. If you're feeling fancy, brown some chicken thighs for about 5 minutes in the instant pot on saute first thing you do, take them out and THEN go through the onions/curry paste routine, and THEN deglaze with a little white wine along with the coconut milk. Then add your diced potatoes, diced chicken breast, and the whole chicken thighs that you just browned.

It's seriously as good as a thai takeout joint. If I used coconut cream instead of coconut milk it'd probably be even better. Oh, sprinkle cilantro on top if you've got it.

Bon appetit.
I journal at https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/journals/the-aloha-journal/msg1267277/#msg1267277

Tales of a haole teacher whose futon washed up on Oahu over a decade ago.

ACyclist

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2017, 07:45:30 PM »
I wish this forum had a like option.  That curry sounds very nice.

soccerluvof4

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2017, 05:39:03 AM »
This is one of my go to meals and it turns out perfect everytime. Porkchops baked in the oven on Uncle Bens origianl long grain rice. Absolutely  delicious and my kids love it too! Also great the next day.

http://joyslife.com/easy-baked-pork-chops-and-rice-recipe/ 
" In life you don't get what you deserve you get what you negotiate"

ixtap

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #4 on: November 10, 2017, 11:43:58 AM »
This is one of my go to meals and it turns out perfect everytime. Porkchops baked in the oven on Uncle Bens origianl long grain rice. Absolutely  delicious and my kids love it too! Also great the next day.

http://joyslife.com/easy-baked-pork-chops-and-rice-recipe/

We used to do that with stuffing!

Goldielocks

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #5 on: November 11, 2017, 12:34:56 PM »
Ginger Coconut Dahl

So amazing.  So easy.  Less than $12 for 8 servings, including banana and rice.  Entertainment ready, even for people that don't like meatless.

https://www.mitchellssoupco.com/product_p/rc-dahl.htm


littlelykke

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #6 on: November 11, 2017, 01:24:01 PM »
Lovely idea! I agree, sometimes when eating out, I think 'I could've done this better'. Luckily we have a lot of amazing restaurants around. And we love it, always gives us a lot of inspiration. But not tonight.... Because we have decided to save our money and not eat out for the rest of this year. Which is quite unfortunate.

Luckily we also love to cook and we decided to try some new Mexican recipes, since we couldn't go to our favorite Mexican restaurant. And they turned out AMAZING! I had constantly the feel as if we were eating out. Absolutely delicious, we're gonna make this more often.

The dish is called 'chilaquiles' and it's made from leftover (stale) tortilla and leftover poached chicken that is shredded. We made everything from scratch. So here comes the whole list of recipes.

First, the poached chicken.
We used 3 chicken breasts for this (because that's what we had left and it needed to get finished), but a whole chicken would work just as good.

Put the chicken in a pan, cover generously with water. Add: 1 onion (diced), 1 tomato (diced), 1 spicy red pepper (diced), cilantro, salt and a bit of chili powder. Bring to a simmer and cook (whole chicken: 1 hour, chicken breasts: 5 minutes) till it's done.
Than let the chicken cool down a bit and shred with two forks. Filter the broth and use in a number of other nice recipes
And you're done.

While the chicken is cooking or cooling down, make the salsa:
dice 1/2 an onion and put it in a large bowl, together with the juice of half a lime and a tablespoon full with freshly chopped cilantro.
Meanwhile: roast 4 whole tomato's, 1 whole jalapeno pepper and 2 cloves of garlic (in it's skin) in a dry, hot pan. When it's (a bit) blackened, mash all of it together. Just remove the skin of the garlic cloves first :)
When it has a nice consistency, mix with the onion, lime juice, salt and cilantro and bring everything to taste. Put aside.

Than make the chicken filling for the chilaquiles:
Put the shredded chicken in a pan, together with 250 milliliters of chicken broth and most of the previously made tomato salsa.
Bring to a simmer and stir regularly.

While this simmers, you make the fried tortilla's.
Pour some oil in a pan (layer of half a centimeter) and heat it up, so you can fry something in it. Cut some old tortilla's in pyramid sized chips. Put the chips in the pan (in batches), fry quickly and get them out. Sprinkle immediately with salt and put aside till you've finished them all.

Now it's time to put it all together!
Put the oven to 180 degrees Celcius.
Grab a oven dish and put in some of the fried tortilla's. Cover with the chicken-salsa-mix. Repeat previous steps once.
Put some sour cream on top and top off with cheese to taste.
Pop in the oven for 20-30 minutes. Take out when the cheese has melted and is golden brown.

Eat while still warm.
We ate it with some of the extra salsa, that I had hold apart, with some quickly made guacamole and the left over sour cream. It was absolutely delish! Highly recommended. Just make sure you have the time to make this. It took us 90 minutes from start till it was ready to eat. A lot longer than my dinners usually take, but on the weekends I don't mind cooking something that takes longer.



Dusty Dog Ranch

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #7 on: November 11, 2017, 03:44:40 PM »
The best advice we got before moving to the sticks was "learn to cook all your favorite ethnic foods". Luckily we were ahead of the curve and already making our own Thai and Indian food at home in the city. Now it's a matter of stocking up on certain ingrediants when we visit friends there. We are growing our own lime leaves and lemongrass. I need to try galangal next.

I just finished a bowl of delicious Tom Kah. I don't have a link, but if you look for one, the recipe needs to call for lime leaves, lemongrass, galangal, fish sauce and green curry paste. Use the full-fat coconut milk, not the 'lite' stuff. It needs the fat to absorb the flavors of the herbs. You can use a firm white fish instead of chicken. That one's called Tom Pla.

littlelykke

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #8 on: November 25, 2017, 05:02:03 AM »
I have a new fantastic recipe: Indian Lamb Saag (basically lamb, cooked in spinach/onion/garlic-sauce).
It took me a full morning to make this, but the end result is amazing. I put 8 single sized portions in the freezer and we have 2 regular dinners (2 persons) out of it.

I used this recipe from the Hairy Bikers: http://www.womanandhome.com/recipes/533722/traditional-lamb-saag
Only alteration I did: I didn't bother with the spices. I had them all powdered available already, so no mortar for me. I used: 1/2 teaspoon cardamom, 1 teaspoon cumin, 1 teaspoon mustard seeds, 1 teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon turmeric. Just skipped the step with the mortar and put them straight in with the onions, after they had nicely browned.

runbikerun

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #9 on: November 25, 2017, 05:14:18 AM »
A recipe I've been using this year: vegetarian chilli.

1 tin tomatoes
2 tins mixed beans
1 tin sweet corn
Chilli powder
Cumin
Crushed chillies
Garlic
Salt and pepper

Simmer the tins of mixed beans until soft (I use a dash of bicarbonate of soda to help the process along), then add the tomatoes and corn. Throw in two or three cloves of garlic, roughly chopped, along with two heaped tablespoons of chilli powder, a heaped tablespoon of cumin, and a teaspoon of crushed chillies. Add plenty of salt and pepper, and simmer until it's thick. Lasts from Sunday to Thursday in the fridge at least: I've never tested beyond that point. The above gives enough to produce three days' worth of lunches for a large man who does a decent amount of exercise, so could well go to four or five days for someone smaller or less inclined to running interval sessions.

If you have leftover meat you want to use up, you can add it at the same time as the tomatoes and corn: I've had good results throwing in a heap of diced chorizo I had left over, which added a really nice edge to the flavour.

Eat with whatever carb you feel like - rice, chips, garlic bread.

frompa

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #10 on: November 25, 2017, 04:12:49 PM »
The best dinner in town depends on what's in the house.  Right now it's oodles of leftover turkey, so we picked off all the remaining meat, then threw the carcass in a big pot of cold water, tossed in the veggie scraps we'd saved and frozen over the last few weeks.  Voila, turkey soup.  It's very good.  And we made some of Julia Child's pain de mie - the perfect white bread, enriched with milk and a good bit of butter, terrific.  That's tonight's dinner... it's different every night.  !!

horsepoor

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #11 on: November 26, 2017, 10:17:09 PM »
Aahh, we had a nice dinner tonight.

Boneless, skinless chicken breasts pounded out a little bit, salt, pepper, tarragon, garlic and dried cherry tomatoes (last three from the garden) then covered in 2 large leeks, sliced up.  A few pats of butter and some grated gruyere cheese on top, and into the oven.

On the side, golden beets steamed in the Instant Pot, then they joined the chicken in the oven on their own sheet pan with some bacon grease, salt, urfa chile (favorite new ingredient) and red wine vinegar.

Rimu05

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Re: Best dinner in town is usually at home
« Reply #12 on: November 27, 2017, 01:30:43 PM »
Curried beef stew . Recipe isn't mine, but I do modify a little

1. Beef (1 or 2 pounds)
2. One onion
3. Two tomatoes (If you love tomatoes, add more)
4. 3 tea spoons of curry powder
5. One tea spoon of smoked paprika
6. A  tea spoon of black pepper
7. A tea spoon of thyme (the original recipe says fresh thyme, I just use the store bought spice one)
8. Table spoon of garlic (I like garlic)
9. Tablespoon of ginger

If your beef is the tough kind, boil first. If it's your regular ole American beef that you don't need to boil, just add a tea spoon or table spoon of olive oil on a medium high setting. I find beef is oily and it also releases water when sautéed so I just put a tea spoon of oil. I sauté for about ten minutes, then lower the heat and let it boil for five mins with the juices are released. I then remove the liquid and put it in a cup (kind of like a beef stock) and set it aside. If your beef doesn't release any juice and just browns nicely, skip to the below.

In the now mostly cooked beef, I add the onions and sauté for for about 4 minutes.
Add garlic and ginger and sauté for another two minutes-ish.
Add tomatoes, curry powder, smoked paprika, thyme and pepper and sauté. Now, tomatoes also release a lot of juice so if you like a more soupy like stew, you can let the tomatoes cook for about six minutes and then add the stock you set aside and some salt. Salt is personal so if you like a pinch, add a pinch, if you like a tea spoon, add a teaspoon.

Leave to simmer for thirty minutes.

I eat mine with Ugali and sukuma wiki. (Kenyan corn meal and collard greens or sautéed kale)

PS. Beware of coworkers eyeing your food in jealousy and constantly asking you what you made because it smells amazing. Every single time.