Easter Monday — The Leftovers.

Add a little chopped boiled egg on top for garnish so everyone knows what this is — or even paprika a la grandma.

DEVILED EGG DIP–Leftover boiled eggs are whirred up with typical deviled egg ingredients for a yummy, addictive dip! Lovely for those attempting to make deviled eggs, but have found the eggs are not happy being peeled. Also perfect for those just too lazy to make deviled eggs or who can’t find their deviled egg platter. Same great taste/less hassle.

Yesterday was a long day. While Easter is always Easter, it can be many other things as well. Stuff on opposite ends of the teeter-totter. There are worship services; there are egg hunts. Kids eat chocolate bunnies; adults feast on deviled eggs. Tulips adorn tables; lilies are carried to hurting friends. Children are born; others folks cross the river, as my nephew’s wife did in the early part of the day. Some are buried, as was my mom in the Easter of ’85.


I think the thing about Easter holidays in particular is you don’t know what the weather’s going to be like.
Read more at https://www.brainyquote.com/topics/easter-quotes_2

Kate Garraway

Continue reading

BAKE A HAM FOR SUPER BOWL SUNDAY

Super Bowl LV week has arrived in all its glory and, despite the American national religion of watching football not being one of my favorite ways to worship, I’m thinking this year might be different. During the nearly year of Covid-Life, we’ve missed a lot of our regular activities and that’s hurt; we’re shell-shocked across the board. But Super Bowl, the game’s yearly high holiday, will be mostly like it always has been. Not much has changed, hmmm? We’ll be at home gathered around the altar of the BIG TV. Cases of communion beer will be bought and stored in a cold garage; chili or pulled pork could be bubbling in the slow cooker to feed all who come; and tall bags of chips with deep vats of dips might triumphantly work to knock last month’s healthy New Year’s resolutions right into the gutter. There will, as always, be Monday morning hangovers for the Monday morning quarterbacks and, hard as it is to imagine, we’ll then soon be on to March Madness. But in the meantime, it’s life as usual and thank goodness! Even for the unenthused like me, it’s time to get ready for the game, prepare for the halftime show, and plan SUPER BOWL FOOD— everything from endless apps to favorite mains and football-shaped desserts! This year, I might even have a little bit different plan for that meal:

Continue reading

Mesa Apple Tart and Other Miracles

While our world feels like a fearful, indescribable mess — and it is, dear friends — I can handle it better if I’m baking. Especially for a holiday and, like it or not, Easter’s coming. Think renewed life, rebirth, clean beginnings — positive thoughts for anyone of any faith or none. We need this now, even if only two are gathered. A holiday for a duet is a tender occasion and while there’ll be a gorgeous lamb chop a piece and not our huge traditional Italian roasted leg of lamb for a crowd, we’ll also have dessert to remember this spring by.

One of my Easter tables.

I’m looking at Susan Hermann Loomis’ recipe for lamb chops. You might, too. (Do you know Susan’s work? She’s one of my very favorite cooking teacher/writers.) I squirreled away the chops weeks ago, but there’s still time for you to get some. Or something else you fancy more.

Need more Easter or Good Friday ideas? Just type “Easter” into the search window. You can also type “brunch,” “eggs,” “lamb,” “Friday Fish,”etc.

Continue reading

Asparagus for Lunch, Asparagus for Dinner…

DSC01506(1)

I’m about to grab Dave, shove him on a plane, rent a car, and head for northern Michigan to watch spring arrive, drink wine with friends, hunt morels, and just sit around watching my favorite lake in the whole wide world. If it’s warm enough, we’ll spend a little time in a canoe or kayak.

While we’re gone, it’s asparagus time. I wondered if you might not like a roundup of the best of the blog asparagus posts so that you have something good and fun to cook for a couple of weeks. Scroll through and see what you like.  Enjoy spring cooking, get out the grill, and be well….  Catch you later when May flowers are blooming.

             Swordfish with Ginger-Asparagus Rice and Mango Salsa Continue reading

Spring Lamb Stew

IMG_2309

Here in Colorado, our biggest claim to food fame may be western slope peaches. Oh, August…2d209-food-peach-afm

Unless, that is, you’re crazy about lamb like I am. You might remember I once ordered Colorado lamb in London and was very glad to get it.  I really did do bangers and mash the rest of the time.  (Read about American lamb here.)

I adore Colorado lamb (and love eating locally!), but it’s not always readily available or reasonably priced, so….

Once in a while, I just do the expedient, less expensive thing and buy a big boneless leg of lamb at Costco with the rest of the crowd.  Why not?  Continue reading

Cream of Pea Soup with Mint, Scallions, and Sharp Cheddar or Easter Leftovers

IMG_7444

Note:  an Instant Pot version of this soup was posted in April of 2018.  The printable recipe on this post includes instructions for both the stove top and Instant Pot versions.

It is a joy and at times a true puzzle to figure out how to use up leftovers, but a good cook lets nothing go to waste.   Or, as Winston Churchill said,

Never let a good crisis go to waste.

And it is at times a “crisis’ in the fridge:  2 boiled eggs, two pieces of bacon, a quart of milk nearly gone bad, a bowl of boiled potatoes, and one piece of sad stale baguette are in your direct view every time you open the door.  Why isn’t there a lovely fillet of salmon, a great bottle of Chardonnay, and deeply-green spinach just out of the neighbor’s garden? Instead of a fresh fish meal, you make a quick potato soup topped with toasted breadcrumbs and then chop together a little egg salad for crackers as a side. And often you’re happier than if you’d cooked from scratch. (Aside: In Seattle, you’re fined $25 if food is found in your garbage.  You must use and eat or compost.)

below:  dogs all dressed up for Easter

IMG_7434

Tuesday morning’s “crisis” (OH DEAR) was a bit of cold Asparagus Vinaigrette with Chopped Eggs I had taken to friends for an Easter Eve supper.  Holiday leftover crises are somewhat worse than the traditional what’s-in-that-tupperware? problem.  Well,  I just heated a small plateful in a skillet and cooked two eggs on top for my breakfast:

IMG_7439

Continue reading

Snow Cap Bean and Ham Soup — Bye-Bye Easter Ham Bone

IMG_5604If you’ve read More Time at the Table for long –and we’re just about to celebrate our fifth birthday — you’ll know I adore beans and particularly love bean soup.  I feel overwhelmingly rich when there’s a ham bone in the refrigerator just waiting for me to throw it in the pot one morning.  While I’ve made bean soup for many years, it rarely comes out exactly the same as it did the time before and while I’m not always sure why that is, I’m happy for it.  Of course the taste is dependent upon which dried bean you use and there’s the rare occasion I’ve used a few different cans of beans when there was no time for the long indulgent soup pot.  Or it might taste differently because of the seasonings or the type or amount of ham.  In this case, I pulled out the Easter ham bone (originally a 7-pound ham that now had been nearly, but not quite, picked clean for sandwiches) and looked in the pantry for a bean just a bit different the typical white, navy, black, split pea, black-eyed pea (actually a legume), etc.

Last time I was at Williams-Sonoma, they had, as they often do, a basket of marked down food products.  I’m willing to pay their price for several items I can’t get elsewhere and that are worth it.  Great vanilla extract, for instance. California olive oil.  But there are other items I’ll spring for only when they’ve made it to the mark down rack.  This is where I’ll buy really expensive Italian or Spanish olive oil that I wouldn’t pay the original $50.00 for.  I’ll pick up unusual cocoa or coffee at half-price.  And this is where I bought Snow Cap Beans, which are heirlooms, for $5.99 (15 ounces) instead of $11.95. Continue reading

Egg and Ham Sandwich with Greek Goddess Dip and Radish Salad or Using What You Have on Earth Day

IMG_5582After Easter there is a plethora of goodies in the refrigerator.  The blessings of not only having enough to eat, but more than enough (witness my weight problem and perhaps yours, too)… are beautiful if sometimes embarrassing.  “An embarrassment of riches” is what it’s called, I think.   Others might use the pejorative meme, “First world problems.”   I choose to be grateful, but careful.  Full of breath, but conservative in the best sense of the word.  In a country where 30- 40% of our food is discarded, but

48.8 million Americans—including 16.2 million children— live in households that lack the means to get enough nutritious food on a regular basis. As a result, they struggle with hunger at some time during the year.

(No Kid Hungry dot org)

you can see why a food blogger would think twice before cooking, eating, or posting anything at all.  There are moments I’m shifty-eyed and clench-jawed just thinking of recipes that discuss things like the quality of certain cheeses or chocolates that easily set one back $25 a pound.  Add in to this mix the concepts revolving around our fascination with being thin (witness the folks in magazines or on tv) and a faithful, earth-loving person begins to be more than confused. Continue reading

Carrot Cake Cupcakes or Bunny Cake

 
 
Carrot Cake Cupcakes
 
What better for Easter dessert than carrot cake?  I’ll freely admit I love carrot cake and am happy for an excuse to make it; Easter’s one of those rare times when I whip up a big fattening dessert and don’t worry about it.   There are usually some other folks willing to eat most of it and I can send leftovers home  with children.  All right, I do keep a bite or two for Dave and I to share on Monday.  There’s a link about making the bunny cake, though it’s fairly obvious, and if you make the cupcakes, let the kids decorate them with the cream cheese icing and jelly beans.  They’re pretty on a big tray filled with Easter “grass.”
 
IMG_5569
.
Disclaimer: I decorate about one cake a year, so forgive my cake. I do always have fun doing it, whether for adults, kids, or a mix.  This old-school bunny method has been around for decades and is simple and easy for children or for anyone who doesn’t have cake decorating skills or equipment.  Icing, jelly beans, licorice whips, and food coloring-dyed sweetened coconut are all you need..
 
(below:  Miss Gab and Tucker all ready for Easter.  Miss Gab wanted a bonnet I refused to buy.)
 
IMG_5558
..
 
Note: This recipe has shown up on the blog before, but it bears repeating. It comes from our housekeeper at Woodlawn Plantation –where I worked years ago — Grace Herson.  If we had someone special coming for dinner at Woodlawn, Grace made carrot cake.  When I left, the women in the house wrote a cookbook for me.  Grace’s addition was this cake.
 .

Grace’s Carrot Cake

Warnings: This cake, while totally delicious, is prone to a sink hole at its center for the 9×13 or 2 9″ layer versions. Fill it with icing and no one’s the wiser. After years, I still can’t fix the problem.

UPDATE:  The hole in the center problem can be helped by either grating the carrots by  hand and pressing out extra moisture with paper towels or grating them with the food processor and letting them dry for 30 minutes on sheet pans and then pressing out extra moisture with towels. (See photo at bottom of post.)  The problem evidently comes from the weight of the extra water in the carrots.

The cupcakes easily run over and sometimes have a hole, too.  Don’t overfill the cupcake tins and, if they still over run, scrape them each back off the tin carefully and remove to cool on rack. Trim, cool completely, then cover with icing!

makes 1 9×13 cake,  2 9″ layers for one bunny cake+, or about 24 cupcakes      
 
2 cups whole wheat flour
2 cups sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 teaspoons baking soda
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
4 large eggs (I use extra large at altitude or add an extra egg.)
1 1/2 cups vegetable oil (I use Canola now)
3 cups grated carrots (blotted dry w/ towel if you use food processor or the extra liquid will make the cake sink-which it may do anyway.)
1 cup chopped walnuts
 
 
Icing:  8 ounces cream cheese, 4 Tablespoons softened butter, 3 1/2  cups powdered sugar, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract.
.

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  (If you make cupcakes, use 350 F.)

 
Cake: mix dry ingredients together and add eggs, oil and mix well. Add carrots and nuts and mix well again. Turn into greased 9x13x2″ pan  or scoop into cupcake tins* and bake 45-55 minutes for cake, 25-30 for the 9-inch pans, and about 20 minutes for cupcakes or until a toothpick stuck in middle comes out clean. Cool well in pan, if making the 9×13. Remove cupcakes from the pans and cool on racks.  For 9-inch round pans –used for bunny cake — let them cool in the pans about 10 minutes before turning out onto racks to cool completely.  Bang pans soundly on the counter before tipping out.
 
Ice all cakes when completely cooled, piping icing  onto cupcakes and topping with a bit of tinted coconut and 3 or 4 jelly beans, if desired.
 
Refrigerate if not eating that day. Cake freezes very well for up to one month.
.
*I like muffins and cupcakes baked right in the greased tins so that the cake batter hits the hot metal directly for a nice crust instead of steaming in the paper liners.  If you’d like to use paper liners, which many bakers do, please feel free.
 
+The two nine-inch layers form the bunny:  one layer is her body and the other layer is cut into three pieces that form the two ears and the bow tie.  See Bunny Cake directions below.
.
 
Icing: Beat cream cheese and butter together very well for 2 minutes. Slowly add powdered sugar (or you’ll have a big mess). Beat in vanilla and whip icing until very smooth.
.

bunny cake:   If you’d like to make this into a bunny cake, follow these directions.

 

{printable recipe for cupcakes or 9×13 cake}

 
Here’s what my 9×13 cake looks like with my oh-so-artsy carrot at center.  (Just draw a carrot with greens freehand with a toothpick and fill with orange frosting for carrot and green for the greens.)
.
 
0a91a-100_4646
 .
Sing a new song,
Alyce
 
 
below:  drying out the shredded carrots.
 
 

38 Power Foods, Week 36 — Rainbow Trout — Pan-Fried Trout Brunch with Red Pepper-Zucchini Potatoes and Fried Eggs

 
Skip the quiche this Easter and fry up a tasty rainbow trout to go with your eggs and a big platter of potatoes with peppers and zucchini. While this is a lovely and not too time-consuming brunch (no do-aheads), it necessitates planning and … well …and doing things in approximately the order (see below), as fish waits for no one.  
Servings:   One fish will serve two people generously.  There’s plenty of Avocado-Basil Mayonnaise and potatoes for four. If you do have four, you’ll need to buy two trout and cook one, putting it in the warming oven while you cook the second.   Alternately, each of the four of you could have a small serving of the single trout.  With the eggs, it’s a filling meal.
       

1.  Make the coffee.  You’ll need it.  Take four eggs out of the frig. 
2.  Set the table–including butter, jam, salt, pepper, water, etc. (Or have a helper do this.)
3.  Make the avocado-basil mayonnaise and place on table.*
4.  Slice half a lemon and put on table.
5.  Make the potatoes and vegetables; place in 200 degree oven to keep warm.*
6.  Set up toaster with bread, but don’t push down yet.
7.  Make the three large dishes with flours and wet mixtures for fish.*
8.  Heat oil in skillet to fry fish.
9.  Set up skillet for eggs; melt butter.  Turn off.
10. Fry fish.*  When you turn it over, start the eggs and push down the toast.
      A helper at this point would be nice.
11. Pour coffee.  Bring oven vegetables out and place on platter.
12. Drain fish on a paper-towel lined baking pan or platter.
13. Gently place fish on top of hot potato mixture.
14. Butter toast and serve up eggs.
15. Enjoy it while it’s hot served with the Avocado-Basil Mayonnaise.
*=Recipe included

AVOCADO-BASIL MAYONNAISE

To the work bowl of a food processor fitted with steel blade, pulse together until pureed:
1/4 cup mayonnaise
Flesh of one avocado
1 tablespoon chopped onion
1 tablespoon chopped basil
1 teaspoon whole grain or Dijon-style mustard
Pinch each:  kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
Generous shake or two of hot sauce
1 tablespoon lemon juice
Makes about a cup.  Refrigerate leftovers well-covered; use for vegetable dip or salad dressing.

POTATOES WITH PEPPERS AND ZUCCHINI

1 tablespoon each: olive oil and butter
 Pinch crushed red pepper
2 teaspoons crushed rosemary
2 large russet potatoes, unpeeled, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1/2-inch dice
1 small onion, chopped
Kosher salt; fresh ground black pepper
2 small zucchini, sliced in 1/2-inch rounds
1 clove garlic, minced  
2-3 tablespoons water 

Preheat oven to 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

Place potatoes in a microwave safe container with a splash of water, cover tightly, and microwave at full power for three minutes.  Drain.

Heat oil, butter, crushed red pepper, and rosemary in a large, deep skillet over low heat for a minute or two.


Pour the drained potatoes, red bell pepper, and onion into the heated skillet and season well with 1/2 teaspoon each kosher salt and black pepper; raise heat to medium.  Cook five minutes or until bell pepper is softening; add garlic and zucchini.  Spoon in water, stir, and cover.  Lower heat again and cook until all the vegetables are tender. Taste and adjust seasonings. Spoon vegetables onto an oven-safe platter or container and place in oven to keep warm while you cook fish and eggs.  When trout is about done (after turning over), remove from oven and place on a serving platter if needed.

PAN-FRIED TROUT

Don’t be scared; he doesn’t bite.

  • 1 cup all purpose white flour, divided
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper, divided 
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided 
  • 1/2 cup cornmeal
  • 1 tablespoon each chopped parsley and dill
  • 2 teaspoons lemon zest
  • Pinch ground cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk 
  • Hot sauce 
  • 1 approximately 3/4-pound cleaned rainbow trout, head and tail left on (rinsed and patted dry)
  • Olive oil
  • Canola Oil

 

1.  Into one of three shallow bowls, place 1/2 cup flour mixed well with 1 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper.
2. Into another bowl, place the rest of the flour, the cornmeal, fresh herbs, lemon zest, cayenne, 1 teaspoon salt,  and 1/2 teaspoon pepper. Mix well.
3.  Into the third bowl, whisk together the buttermilk and 4-5 drops hot sauce.
4.  Dip both sides of trout first in the flour-salt-pepper mixture, then in the buttermilk mixture, and last in the flour-cornmeal mixture.  Set on plate while you heat oil.
5.  Into a large, deep skillet, pour a mixture of olive and canola oil to fill the skillet 1/4 – 1/2 inch deep.   Heat over medium-high heat.  Gently lay fish in the oil and cook 4-5 minutes or until quite brown on one side.
6.  Carefully turn fish and cook another 2-3 minutes or until browned and, when tested inside, fish is firm and flaking.
7.  Drain fish on paper towels while you fry four eggs in prepared skillet (no recipe included.)  and make your toast.
8.  Gently transfer fish to the platter with the warm potatoes and vegetables.  
9.  Using a sharp, serrated knife and cooking fork, separate head from the body of the fish with a quick cut.  Gently pry apart the opened body of the trout to expose the spine, bones, and flesh.
Filet by removing as much of the skeleton as possible.  Cut fish in half and serve with eggs, potatoes, avocado-basil mayo, and toast.  I leave the tail on for serving.  Watch for bones!

You CAN also filet the trout before cooking; I think the trout is tastier cooked whole.

For detailed trout prep, check this out. 

… … … … …
rainbow trout are sustainable native American fish with a beautiful, delicate flavor.  To me, they’re the American version of sole, one of my favorites.  At about eight dollars a pound for fresh trout, they’re a perfect value for healthy, omega-3s and also have plenty of B vitamins and antioxidants.  Racking up a whopping! 260 calories per six-ounce serving (approximate) makes trout a top-value food.  Catch them yourself or buy farmed trout at your supermarket or fishmonger.
… … … …

 38 Power Foods is a Team Effort!

Stop by these other blogs and see what they’re cooking each week as we team up to bring you some of the healthiest cooking available:

Ansh – SpiceRoots.com  
Minnie Gupta from TheLady8Home.com

All sites may not blog power foods each week.

  

ON MY DINNER PLACE BLOG THIS WEEK:

MY VERY BEST FROSTED BROWNIES, A SMALL PAN:  

 

Sing a new song,
Alyce