A year Ago: Avocado salad w/ balsamic reduction.
A few years back, I received a cookbook from my cousin lyndi about thai food. I hate to admit that up until now, I hadn't used it (sorry lynster). I made this masaman curry recipe from it and it knocked my socks right off. I tweeked it a little bit, using lamb, not beef, substituting fresh for dried jalps, and adding some lemongrass to the coconut milk and then removing it later. one of the best curries I've ever had.
The middle pic is one of my favs, chicken in a pot. Super easy to do, just cut up a whole chicken (preferably free range, I have been using chickens from "plum creek farms") and sear it on both sides (seasoned with salt and peps.), then, in a dutch oven or heavy casserole, add some well seasoned veg (I used potatoes, carrots, turnips, celery, parsnips, mushrooms, and garlic), a couple drizzles of olive oil, a bay leaf or two, some rosemary sprigs, and then top with your chicken pieces ( I like to use the breasts, thighs, and legs, and then keep the back and wings in the freezer in a big ziploc until I get about 3 or 4 chickens' worth and then make stock with that). add about 12 oz. of liquid, preferably, stock, wine, or water (only if you don't have the other stuff) and put it in the oven at 350F for about 2 hours. seriously a great meal.
the last photo is from dinner last night. I didn't want to heat up the house as we've turned the ac off, but had a lot of that leftover chicken and was going to make cajun chicken and rice with it, so I decided to do that but use a cast iron pan and then grill as a heat source. Pretty fun way to cook. I actually enjoyed it a lot. I'm trying to experiment with different cooking sources, you know, just in case I were to buy a house that needed a complete kitchen remodel and was without a conventional heat source for an undisclosed amount of time...hypothetically speaking of course:).
nonfoods: Ran into my old friend "z" yesterday. ended up spending the evening with him and his lady friend. Super fun time. Also chilled with iske squared on saturday, went to the half blood prince, and ate dinner at the peacock. James ordered the vindaloo and I was shocked and amazed that he could eat something so hot. I tried a piece of his chicken and it ripped my head off. He handled it like a boss!
DISH recommends: Thailand the Beautiful Cookbook. A very very good book on thai food. Just getting into this one, but don't expect to be disappointed.
Lodge cast iron skillet:doesn't matter what size. I got mine a few years back and it is one of my most used pans. Totally loves it. try it on the grill, super fun and your house stays cool, plus your neighbors will be taunted with the delicious smells.