Sunday, July 25, 2010

Wishing You a Safe Trip Home

The other night we had company over for dinner that we have not seen in 2 1/2 years.  To their credit they looked well preserved for their absence.....only the gain in the height of their children gave them away.  Such special company gave rise to a lot of meal planning.   What to make that would complement the lovely summer weather we've been having that would not entirely stress me out.  Plus....let's face it....this lady can really we won't be having take out.  A lot of meals that come to mind require the long term use of the oven or stove which would make my house unbearably hot. A recent cookbook purchase solved my dilemma.  I soon decided to make a recipe for sticky chicken that a friend had shared with me quite a few years ago while visiting in Texas and along with it I made two recipes from the new Whitewater Cooks at Home cookbook.  The noodle salad and a salad with green goddess dressing were both tempting choices.  I would add some parboiled grated carrot to the noodle salad next time for a bit more colour, and I cannot say enough about the goodness of the green goddess dressing!  The greens can be altered if you do not care for some the more bitter greens (next time I would pick my own assortment).  I have not bought a cookbook in quite a while and I was reluctant to do so as I have quite a few already.  Well after flipping through this one in the store I decided that I was really tempted by is just a beautiful book!  And then.....I decided that I would buy it for my friend that was coming to dinner that night.......she would certainly appreciate its wondrousness (since she has mad cooking skills) and I loved the fact that it's Canadian and the recipes are typical of what you'd find here in a modern trendy restaurant.  A nice little souvenir for her to take back to NZ.  Well I cannot say enough about this book.....I know already I've done that........but I have 2 more copies already ordered plus 1 copy of their first cookbook Whitewater Cooks!  Dessert was not going to stress me out either and I went with my old standby of Chocolate Sauce and Cake served with a scoop of ice cream.  Most of the meal was prepared during the morning and even the chicken was grilled just after noon....dressed in its sauce and reheated in the oven along with the baking dessert just before dinner.  So there you have for a few recipes. For the Sticky Chicken recipe, another friend has it already typed out......and you can find it here.....go and have a's quick, yummy and kid friendly too if you cut down on the hot chilies:)
Green Goddess Salad
2 heads of butter lettuce
1 head of radicchio
The Dressing
1/2 cup mayonaise
1/2 cup sour cream
1 Tbsp minced anchovy or anchovy paste
1Tbsp lime juice
2Tbsp white wine vinegar
2 tsp tarragon, fresh chopped or 1 tsp dried
2 T chives fresh chopped
1/4 cup parsley, fresh chopped
1/2  cup spinach leaves, packed
Wash and spin greens of your choice and store them in a plastic bag lined with paper towel in the fridge for at least 1 hour....longer is fine too.  Might as well do it early and free up some time later.  Put all dressing ingredients into a food processor and process until smooth.  Store dressing in the fridge until ready to assemble the salad.  Do not assemble the salad until ready to serve as it will wilt.  Once the salad is tossed with the dressing, sprinkle with a bit of chopped parsley and Salt and Pepper.

Cold Asian Noodle Salad

1 pkg (500g or 1 lb) angel hair pasta cooked, drained and cooled
2 Tbsp ginger, fresh minced
2 garlic cloves minced
1 Tbsp miso paste
1/2 c rice vinegar
1/4 c soy sauce, Japanese
1/4 cup sesame oil
1 tsp curry powder
1 T sweet chili sauce
juice of 2 limes
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1 cup toasted peanuts, chopped
1/4 cup cilantro chopped
I decided to use rice vermicelli as the recipe did not specify wheat or rice based noodles.  I might like to try a tiny bit thicker noodle next time and will break up the noodle before putting it in the pot to cook to prevent noodle tangles.  My noodle package had no instructions, but I cooked them in boiling water for 4-5 minutes until the noodles were al dente.  Then immediately rinsed and set them in ice cold water to thoroughly chill them while I made the dressing.  For the dressing add all ingredient right down to the lime juice and mix with a whisk.  Add vegetable oil in a steady steam while whisking and store in a jar in the fridge until needed.  When both noodles and dressing are ready mix them and store in fridge (Mine fit in a large zip lok bag where it sat in my fridge until dinner time)  Transfer to serving bowl and toss with cilantro and peanuts and serve.

Now we are on our way back east to visit with family for a few weeks and our friends continue their trip and eventual return to NZ........So long good friends.....we are saddened to see you go, but look forward to seeing you all again soon:) 

1 comment:

Merry said...

Sounds like a delish meal! I have to break out the sticky chicken again soon. I am always looking for new recipes so I forget to use the old ones that I like. I will definitely try the salad dressing & noodle salad recipes though!