Good times continued in Week 38. I was continually handing over more and more responsibility to our kitchen manager Rachel, and finding myself able to focus on things that I had neglected for way too long. I loved the feeling of working alongside someone, showing her the ropes, and then stepping away knowing it was taken care of. What a feeling of freedom!
Our children were in the midst of summer fun, sleeping late, hanging around in flip flops and shorts all day, wandering into the Hurley House kitchen from time to time to say hello. We were all exhaling a bit and loving the new rhythm.
WHAT I COOKED
Chicken with Goat Cheese & Basil, At Home
Summer Garden Pasta, At Home
Pecan Rum Raisin Ice Cream, Cooking for Jeffery
Jon Snow Fish Salad, At Home
Cheddar Corn Chowder, Barefoot Contessa
Kale Salad with Pancetta & Pecorina, Cooking for Jeffery
Peach and Blueberry Crumbles, At Home
Peach and Raspberry Crisp, Barefoot Contessa
Cranberry Orange Scones, At Home
Sopressata & Cheese Pastry, How Easy Is That?
Caesar Roasted Swordfish, How Easy Is That?
Sicilian Grilled Swordfish, Foolproof
Indonesian Grilled Swordfish, Back to Basics
Summer Vegetable Couscous, Make It Ahead
Truffled Chicken Liver Mousse, Make It Ahead
Summer Filet with Bearnaise, Make It Ahead
Root Vegetable Gratin, Cooking for Jeffery
Summer Rose Sangria, Make It Ahead
Tri Berry Crumbles, Make It Ahead
Chocolate Sorbet, At Home
Lamb Kebabs with Couscous, At Home
Couscous with Toasted Pine Nuts, How Easy Is That?
Tomato Feta Salad, At Home
Summer Fruit Crostata, At Home
Eggplant Gratin, Barefoot in Paris
Omelet for Two, At Home
Seared Tuna with Mango Chutney, At Home
WHAT I LEARNED
KALE SALAD WITH PARMESAN AND PECORINO.
Man, I really loved this. Out of all of Ina’s Caesar dressings that have failed me in the past, this one hit the nail on the head. It’s delicious, creamy, balanced, and free from the overly oily pungent raw garlic flavor so many of hers have. I loved the kale in this. It’s dark and textured and can really stand up to the dressing and other elements without wilting. The crisp pancetta is a knock out, and who doesn’t love crispy toasted bread cubes? Winner!
PEACH BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE.
Wow! A top ten! This is the best peach dessert of Ina’s I have made to date. Or, rather, it’s tied with her Ultimate Peach Ice Cream. Both of these have the magical quality of lighting up the natural peach flavor (even with subpar peaches) and making it shine. The blueberries are perfect here. Once again, who in their right mind has time or energy to peel peaches. Leave them on and carry along. No one will know the difference or care for that matter.
SOPPRESSATA & CHEESE PASTRY
Goodness gracious yes. Number one, this is super easy. Puff pastry. Dijon. Ham. Cheese. Bake. Number two, it has mad flavor. Number three, all of my children (even the picky ones) loved this. Number four, we fought over the leftovers which tells me I need to make this again ASAP.
PECAN RUM RAISIN ICE CREAM.
I realize this flavor isn’t for everyone. I’m not sure I even knew about it until Ina because she tends to love it and find a way to turn all of her favorite desserts into a rum raisin version at some point. If you do enjoy the flavor of rum with raisins, vanilla, and pecans, this ice cream is a dreamy dessert. It turned out exactly as promised and I served it to happy staff members on a summer day.