Short version: Pork chops, sauteed calabacita/tomato/green onion, snacks and vodka
Long version: This was one of two nights I was in Taos with my brother and sister. We had a late lunch at a Mexican diner when they arrived, so we cooked dinner at our rented condo pretty late.
Because I am a peasant woman at heart, I travel with food. I had brought a bunch of garden vegetables with me, along with butter. So I sauteed diced calabacita in butter with some diced tomato, and green onion we had bought at the store. The pork chops also came from the store. My brother grilled those.
The snacks we had beforehand consisted of dilly beans I brought with me, plus tortilla chips and sharp cheddar cheese from the store. These accompanied vodka with lime and seltzer.
A very nice dinner, I must say.
The home crew had steaks and leftover spaghetti with tomato sauce.
Short version: Tamales, sauteed green beans, peaches and cream, more snacks and vodka
Long version: Taos night #2, and another meal cooked at the condo. We had been walking around all day and were pretty worn out by the time we got back to the condo at 4 p.m. Luckily, we had purchased tamales and peaches at the farmers market in the morning, so it was an easy meal.
I steamed the tamales in a big skillet with a layer of knives and spoons on the bottom to hold the tamales out of the water.
Improvised tamale steamer.
The green beans came from my garden, and all I did with them was saute them in butter.
I also used the last of the tomatoes I brought with me, green onion, cumin I found in a cupboard, and a bit of the brine from the dilly beans to make a salsa for the tamales. What I really needed was some sour cream, because WOAH, those were some spicy tamales. As are all purchased tamales, in my experience.
The peaches were peeled, diced, sweetened with honey I found in the cupboard, and then doused in the heavy cream I had bought for coffee. The peaches could have used another day to fully ripen, but they were still good.
This night's snacks were pickled cucumbers I had made the day before by heating the brine from the dilly beans after all the beans were eaten and then adding the cucumber I had brought with me, sliced. My sister also made guacamole, which we ate with tortilla chips. And more vodka, lime, and selter.
I prepared most of this meal, and let me tell you how easy cooking for only three adults is. It was so much easier than my daily cooking, it didn't feel at all like a chore.
The home crew had man food. More on that momentarily, but first, a directional sign from a truck stop rest room on my way to Taos.
My sons were not amused. (I must admit I rolled my eyes at this, too.)
Short version: Lasagna-ish skillet, strawberries and cream
Long version: While I was gone, A. discovered that almost two gallons of milk had soured. Loathe to waste that much milk, he looked up what to do with it, and ended up making two batches of ricotta with the sour milk and a bit of vinegar to separate it.
You just never know what that man will do. I was very impressed.
The kids loved it and ate it plain, but he made a TON of ricotta. Like five cups. I used some in this meal.
A. made man food the day before, which consisted of ground beef, potatoes (from the garden, yay!), tomatoes, and rooster stock. The kids all liked it, and there was a LOT left over.
Using that as a base, I fried that in butter, then added some canned spaghetti sauce, garlic powder, frozen green peas, and the ricotta cheese A. had made. The end result was like lasagna, but without noodles. It was exceptionally good.
Strawberries were on sale for about the cheapest I'd ever seen at the store I stopped at before coming home. So I bought four pounds. We ate almost two pounds this night, sliced and covered in sugar and heavy cream. Yum.
Short version: Steak and mushrooms, rice, raw baby carrots, broccoli, watermelon
Long version: It is a tradition at our school that the history teacher grills steaks for every student and employee for lunch on the first day of school. There were about five steaks left over that the school cook had planned to use for something, but never did.
Week-old cooked steaks can't be served at school, but I have no problem with it. I sliced them and fried them in butter with the mushrooms she also gave me.
The carrots and broccoli came from the school, too. They were left over from the salad bar last week.
The watermelon wasn't from school. It was from the first grocery store I went to in Taos with my brother and sister. I saw watermelons WITH SEEDS and could barely contain my excitement. These are the first real watermelons I've seen all summer, which is why we haven't had any watermelon yet this summer.
It will probably be the only watermelon we have this year, so I'm very glad it was a good one.
Short version: Improvised pizza, leftover meat, green salad with vinaigrette, baked apples with cream
Long version: I spent most of the day harvesting tomatoes, green beans, and calabacitas in the garden, and then roasting tomatoes, green beans, and calabacitas in the kitchen.
The tomatoes, plus a couple of heads of garlic, basil, and balsamic vinegar, became roasted tomato sauce.
I was also making bread this day, so I used some of the dough to make pizza crust. Except I didn't have the pans I needed for stretching out the dough, because the pans had roasted vegetables on them.
So instead, I just put a lump of dough on my smaller cookie sheet, roughly stretched it out, and then when it was baked, cut it in half longways to make two small pizza crusts. By that time, I had finished roasting the vegetables and could wash one of my big pans to put the crusts on.
I used the roasted tomato sauce for the pizza sauce, and A.'s ricotta cheese, some pre-shredded cheddar from the school cafeteria, and some shredded home cheddar for the cheese. One pizza had some finely diced ham that also came from the school cafeteria.
The lettuce and radishes in the salad were from the cafeteria, too. There really were a LOT of leftovers from the cafeteria last week.
Tomatoes and cucumbers from my garden, though.
And the apples for the baked apples were from the tree next to Rafael's house. A. and the kids picked them while I was gone. This variety doesn't break down enough to make applesauce, but it's okay for baked apple. Peeling and slicing that many small apples is definitely a labor of love, although baked apples are awfully good.
Short version: Taco meat, tortilla chips, watermelon
Long version: I used the rest of the ground beef man food, along with a bunch of sliced tomatoes left from the cafeteria, to make taco meat. I was out of tortillas, but I brought a bag of leftover tortilla chips home with me from Taos, so we used those to scoop up the meat.
And we finished the watermelon. I'm so happy that I found a real watermelon before the summer was over. I had pretty much given up for the year.
Short version: T-bone steaks, leftover rice, leftover roasted calabaza and green beans, raw tomatoes, strawberries and cream
Long version: Did I go a little overboard buying fruit in Taos? Yes. Did anyone mind? No.
Okay, your turn! What'd you eat this week?