item 1 (red cooked chicken legs) would be yet another disappointment from my book “spices.” i’m sure the recipe had a lot of promise and somehow i made it bland...maybe with my dried spices or my lack of pretty food styling (the picture in the book, which used whole star anise instead of dried anise seeds, for example, was quite tempting). i mean, i simmered the red sauce, let it infuse, and then poached the chicken for a while and all i got was...vaguely spiced chicken. truly, i don’t know why i should have been so upset. this was just a quickie dinner anyway, meant to use some of the chicken and the last of the rice and maybe play with some of the spices.
item 2, however, is more easily fixable, i should think. nigella’s ‘crepes cannelloni’ recipe suggests meat sauce and a tomato puree. i didn’t feel like making meat sauce, and i sure as hell didn’t feel like pureeing anything, so i spiced up some diced canned tomatoes and threw in a few portobello slices for each crepe and topped it with more tomato chunks and a fresh hunk of mozzarella from blue ridge. the promise was there, i could taste it, especially the way the melted cheese blended with the tomato blended with the crepes, but it definitely needs 1) more spice and 2) a meat sauce. at least i got in a meatless meal for the week!
was so overwhelmed by all of the tomato i needed to seriously cleanse my palate for dessert, so i just had a few spoonfuls of my new improved blood orange sorbet (which had more sugar, zero lime juice and, for some reason, a beaten egg white).
am feverishly looking forward to the weekend and what might lie ahead. for tomorrow, bangers and mash (from kitchen diaries). friday my tub of ricotta meets its destiny. saturday will be fresh bread, soup (since i finally have milk, cream, white mushrooms AND porcini mushrooms) and a new risotto for dinner; and sunday will be one of the vegetarian stews i’ve been pondering.
next week: lamb-filled flatbreads? one of the tempeh or seitan sautees? i love the new butcher counter at the tenleytown whole foods. everything looks so trim and delicious, it fills my head with ideas. twice now, i’ve been drawn to the lamb--and i don’t even like lamb--with a notion of trying either a tagine-style stew or one of nigel slater’s recipes. he seems to have no issues whatsoever with lamb.