Banh Mi with Marinated Pork

I have finally payday loans houston had a banh mi! I first learned of the Vietnamese sandwich from the LA Times in November. Then it seemed everyone was talking about them. The NY Times, LAist and multiple foodbloggers. My sister said even my high school newspaper had an article about them. I loved the idea of so many direct payday lenders flavors coming together, so I couldn't wait to try it.

Since I hadn’t gotten a chance to seek one out payday loans direct lender when I was last in LA, I had to make my own. When the Mizzou Meat Market had fresh Braunschweiger on sale, I knew it was time. And

what better time than National Picnic Day?

If my first banh mi wasn’t going to be from a Vietnamese expert, I wanted to do what I could to make mine as best as possible. The pork tenderloin and braunschweiger were from the university, which raises and butchers meat down the street from me. I bought an egg from the Root Cellar market, which sells products from local farms, and I made my payday loans portland or own mayonnaise. I picked up a payday support center daikon from the Asian market downtown and pickled it with shredded carrots. I made the bread from scratch. I grew the cilantro in my front yard.

I wasn’t messing

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around with this sandwich.

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Andouille Onion Galette

It’s a fine skill to be able to plan a menu and execute it well. Lately, though, I’ve been taking pride in my new ability to cook on the fly, especially when it means making something out of nothing, as it did with this galette.

For at least two weeks, I’ve been trying to get by with what I have until one of my less car-deprived friends takes me to the grocery store. I was almost ready to give up and go to a restaurant yesterday, but then after reading MFK Fisher talk about onion tarts, I remembered that onions were just about the only vegetable I had, and hey, maybe I could make one of those galettes I always admire on the blogs.

So I found a recipe for a savory dough with flour and cornmeal, put that together in 10 minutes, then let it chill for an hour. In the meantime, I remembered a package of andouille sausage deep in my freezer. As for the onions, I started to cook them with a little salt and olive oil. We were out of butter so I used a splash of my roommate’s heavy whipping cream. I poured in some sherry and sprinkled in some herbs de Provence for added Frenchness. I assembled the galette, and it was ready shortly after my friends arrived.

I was nervous serving it, but they loved it (and so did I). My friend Amy just wanted to try it since she already ate, but then she went up for seconds. Between bites, Kat looked at me and shook her head, disbelieving or admiring or both.

The tart was rich and needed a side dish. I really wanted some salad greens with a light vinaigrette, but I was fresh out of anything green. I did have three carrots, though, so I shred those and tossed them with balsamic vinegar, olive oil and sunflower seeds.

Voilà, another little something out of nothing.

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Chorizo Taco Salad with Corn Salsa

Last week I picked up a pint of beautiful cherry tomatoes at The Root Cellar. I popped a whole one in my mouth and it was like candy (which is a wonder because I didn’t even like tomatoes really until I got to college). I was so happy to finally have a tasty tomato after months of winter. But the sun was shining that day in Columbia, and I decided to make a meal that would feel like my perennially warm home of Los Angeles: a light and fresh taco salad.

I love beans and cheese too, but this was not a day for those. This day was about the fresh tomatoes and greens I had picked up. I made a sweet and spicy corn salsa with the cherry tomatoes. Then, I filled the tacos with a chorizo and ground beef mixture, green peppers and red onions (cooked, but still tender), the salsa, sour cream and cilantro. I put the tacos on top of a bed of greens for presentation, then we went out to my front porch, and smashed the tacos and mixed the whole thing together to eat as a salad.

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Frittata!!

Someone told me that his mom once used five successive exclamation points in a note saying she was making frittata for dinner. At that point I had never tried frittata, but I knew I must if it roused that much excitement in someone. Now I love to make it, and it has become a default meal if I have a lot of eggs and vegetables. If you’re not familiar with frittata, it’s like a crustless quiche, or a baked omelet. 

I love to put ricotta in frittata, if only so I can say “ricotta frittata” over and over. I made this one just before spring break when I needed to clean out my refrigerator. No ricotta unfortunately, but I used up a zucchini, a Chinese eggplant, half a red bell pepper, leftover chorizo and most of my eggs. It made a nice dinner and breakfast before my flight.

Plus, it’s so easy, you’ll be singing like my friend Kat did, “Hakuna Frittata! It means no worries!”

 

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Chili and Cornbread


Most of the recipes we offer on He Cooks She Cooks are more like guidelines. We know we don’t have the authority to tell you how exactly to make something. We barely listen to the great chefs whose recipes we look at. The way we see it, there are infinite ways to make great food. As long as you have an idea how you want something to taste in the end, you can keep adding till you get there — or somewhere close.

This chili, for instance, is unbelievably forgiving. Beans, vegetables, meat (or not) and spices. Throw varying amounts of those in a pot, simmer for a while, then serve.

We had ours with homemade cornbread. I finally made the New York Times recipe I’d been wanting to try all year: Brown Butter Cornbread with Thyme and Farmer Cheese. How could you go wrong with those ingredients, right? Well the result wasn’t bad. It just…wasn’t how I like my cornbread. I guess I, like Deb in the Smitten Kitchen, like my cornbread on the sweeter side, but didn’t know it until I had this much more savory version. If you’re in the camp that would prefer something like this, then by all means, go thyme and brown butter crazy.

In the meantime, here’s a list of what we put in the chili. Add and subtract ingredients as you wish.

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Andouille Sausage and Roasted Poblano Peppers

“Sweetness. Saltiness. Sourness. Bitterness. Every delicious bite you’ve ever tasted has been a result of these four tastes coming together on your taste buds. We taste them as individual notes, and in concert.”

The Flavor Bible

Poblano Andouille

This particular meal is a symphony. Not only in flavors, but in textures and all other senses. I’ve started to think about how food is always improved by creating a better balance of tastes and textures. What’s better than a salty, crunchy tortilla chip? A salty, crunchy tortilla chip with a glob of cool, smooth, slightly spicy guacamole.

The Flavor Bible offers the following formula:

FLAVOR = TASTE + MOUTHFEEL + AROMA + ‘THE X FACTOR’

Taste being those four feelings experienced by the taste buds. Mouthfeel being the texture experienced by the rest of the mouth. Aroma being what the nose perceives. And X-Factor being everything else you experience from the dish (visual, mental, emotional, spiritual).

But back to the almost-musical andouille and roasted poblano recipe I found at Bitchin Camero

The plate is covered with cold, crunchy lettuce and bitter cilantro. It’s drizzled with olive oil. On top of that is a smoky roasted poblano pepper (soft, slightly spicy, but also a little bitter). Then we put a layer of soft brown rice mixed with salsa (spicy). On top of that is a warm medley of andouille sausage (salty, meaty and spicy), corn (sweet), onions (sweet) and salsa (spicy). Then we put chunks of quesadilla cheese (warm, creamy) and sour cream (cold, creamy). We took a bite, and instantly remembered what we forgot: a good squeeze of fresh lime (sour).

Every bite of this dish has the four tastes and a varied mouthfeel. You can hear the lettuce crunch in your mouth. You see several colors on the plate. You sniffle a little from the piquancy. And the kitchen smells great for hours.

I had leftovers probably four times during the week, and each time my tastebuds were equally happy. Make your tastebuds happy too. Make this dish.


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