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Sunday, June 26, 2011

Scallops and chicken, potatoes and cookies

A cooking weekend--my kind of relaxation. This weekend my daughter Jordan and her family got the benefit of my cooking. Last night, while Christian was working, Jordan and I had scallop cakes with lime/cilantro mayonnaise. The recipe, said to serve six with sliders, called for 2 lbs. scallops; I decided to halve it--three servings would be plenty I thought. Even then, I goofed--I bought medium sea scallps when, since I was going to chop them anyway, I should have bought the much cheaper bay scallops. I told Jordan, whose nickname in some circles is "Princess," that she really was getting a meal for a princess and she countered with, "You wanted to cook it."
If you decide to go with one lb. scallops, rough chop them in the food processor and then add
1/2 medium Vidalia onion, which you have diced and softened in 2 Tbsp butter
1-1/2 Tbsp. flour - I ended up adding more
1-1/2 Tbsp. bread crumbs
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1 egg, beaten--I cracked it into the edge of the bowl with the other ingredients and then whisked at it with a fork--why dirty another dish?
1/4 c. chopped chives--I have them on my porch and after rinsing use scissors to "chop" them
1.4 c, chopped cilantro leaves--I did this in my small counter-top food processor
1 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
1 tsp. fresh grated ginger

Mix above ingredients. If the mixture is too wet, add more flour. Shape into patties--I made regular size patties rather than sliders and still came out with six from the 1 lb. scallops. One was an adequate serving for each of us.
Chill patties at least half an hour, more is better.
Dust patties with flour
Fry in 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil at medium heat until golden brown on both sides--scallops cook quickly, and you don't want to overdo them.

Serve with cilantro mayonnaise
Process together,
1 peeled garlic clove, chopped
3 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
A few dashes of Tabasco or similar hot sauce
1/2 tsp. Dijon mustard
1/2 c. cilantro

Add this mixture to 1/2 c. mayonnaise and season to taste with salt and freshly ground black pepper

To go with these, I roasted broccoflower. You can buy cauliflower for about $1.50 a head; broccoflower is $3.99 and doesn't taste that much different, but the color is pretty. I put flowerets on a cookies sheet, tossed with olive oil, salt and pepper, and roasted at 350 for about 20 minutes. Then dressed them with the tiniest bit of vinaigrette. Jacob refused to eat the broccoflower and had a hot dog instead of a crab cake.

Today the crab cakes made a wonderful lunch. And I still froze two!

Tonight, with Christian joining us, I made a chicken recipe I found on my favorite blog, Mystery Lovers Kitchen, courtesy Krista Davis, who got the recipe, developed by Chef Jesse Thomas, via Jaden Hair at Steamy

Baked Parmesan Garlic Chicken Legs

Well, first off, I love chicken thighs, so I used four thighs for the four of us. You'll see in a minute why they're not as suited. Sprinkled them with a mixture of
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. dried rosemary (I have huge rosemary bushes and never have dried rosemary, so I cut it early in the day--it dries inside just fine and becomes crumbly, but you cannot process that stuff at all)
1 tsp. Kosher salt
1/2 tsp. cumin
Bake the chicken at 425 for 45 minutes--or since thighs are thicker than legs, maybe just a bit longer.
Before you take them out of the oven, mix
3 Tbsp. olive oil
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2 tsp. salt
1/4 c. grated Parmesan

Remove chicken from oven and roll in cheese mixture. Well, thighs don't roll as well as legs, so I just kind of spread the cheese mixture on top. We removed it and the good seasoned skin for Jacob, and he loved the chicken.

Oven fried potatoes: for four of us, I scrubbed and thinkly sliced six medium red potatoes, added a good bit of that rosemary from my front yard, and a good bit of salt and pepper. Then tossed it all with olive oil (I used too much--be careful) and put it in the hot oven with the chicken, which was both good and bad. It cooks pretty fast at that high tempearture and some pieces were burned, though on the whole the potatoes were crisp and good.

What I didn't cook this weekend: lemon lime basil cookies. The recipe intrigues me, but I knew my family wouldn't eat it, and I don't need cookies around here. I gave the recipe to my neighbor, hoping he would cook it right away and appear at my door with samples, but that didn't work. It came from the July issue of Bon Appetit, so I'm sure you can find it via Google or Epicurious if it sounds as good to you as it did to me. And I have a nice healthy crop of basil, even some mint basil. Bet that would be good in it.

Wonder how much I gained this weekend?

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