Mar 22, 2010

Cooking For Mama, For Husband, For Everyone.

Okay, first up, I am totally obsessed with buffalo wings (which I had never eaten before).  A client requested them, and I don't do frying (always burn or make greasy-soggy-mess), so I did some e-research and found my home with good old Alton Brown.

I find him completely annoying on television, but his recipes are usually solid, and these wings are no exception.  What I love is that the double cooking process (steam then bake), makes them super crispy, yet renders almost all of the fat.

Granted, you add all the fat back in when you toss the wings in the sauce, but I used less butter, used light butter instead, and added splashes of balsamic vinegar and Worcestershire sauce to tang it up.  The result is heaven.

I was nervous to make these for the client, so I had a trial run at home, and they were a hit with everyone.  I made them for another client today.

Mom is still in town, so we've been showing her the town via stuffing our faces (that's how husband and I roll).  We had to take her to Don Antonio's, and she loved her chicken burrito, which she saved half of and enjoyed a few days later while watching Damages.

Husband had his usual chicken enchiladas and I busted out of the box by ordering the Don Antonio's House Special:  Crispy chicken taco, Chile Relleno and Cheese Enchilada.  It was a lot of cheese.

Saturday was a play day for me and mama.  We started at the Santa Monica flea market where we purchased some funky wooden picture frames, then we went to the Santa Monica Farmers Market, where we did not eat anything organic.  Nope, amongst all that green bounty, we had gelato.

I had the rainbow cone, with one scoop of pecan pie gelato, mama had one scoop of coconut.  It was awesome.  She had it with my aunt and uncle and cousins the last time she was here for our wedding.  I'd never even heard of this place that is 2 miles away from my house.  So funny what you don't see until someone who doesn't know your city pops in.  Genius!  I probably won't go back until she comes back...

After playing for two days, it was back to work for me.  Above is a penne pasta in a simple stock reduction with toasted pine nuts, fresh basil, panko bread crumbs and shaved Parmesan.  Tasty!

I made them the buffalo wings, with roasted fingerling potatoes and...

Roasted green beans.  I love to roast everything, clearly.

Cheese and herb strata.  Simple egg casserole with torn french bread, thyme, aged cheddar and Parmesan.  Puffy and golden, it reheats perfectly.

Chocolate insanity brownies.  Fudge brownie with dark chocolate chunks and toasted walnuts.

Yeah, they look messy, but trust me, it was all I could do to not plant my face in the middle of this plate and eat my way out. Seriously.

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