Friday, January 29, 2010

Stay Tuned!

I know it's been a ridiculously long time since I posted a blog update, but I promise there will be a slew of new posts coming very soon.

Thanks to everyone who has stuck with me during this slow time.
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Monday, January 04, 2010

Christmas Dinner

This year my mom took over the cooking of the traditional Christmas feast. She made a standing rib roast, which my stepdad expertly carved:

... as well as Yorkshire pudding with the pan drippings:

My mom took these pics because I was feeding the baby, so I don't have closeups of the green beans with almonds or the mashed potatoes, but here's a table shot:

And my plate with a little bit of everything:

The meat was done perfectly, nice and rare. Everything was fantastic and a great meal to celebrate our first Christmas with Baby Girl. Dessert was a yummy, dense chocolate cake:

... and coffee. I could have eaten half the cake, it was that good.
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Sunday, January 03, 2010

Christmas Morning Strata

I made the traditional Christmas morning strata for breakfast this year.

What I love about it, besides it being so delicious, is that you make it the day before and just bake that morning. Look at all that gooey cheesiness:

My mother-in-law brought cinnamon rolls:

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Saturday, January 02, 2010

Christmas Eve Dinner

For Christmas Eve dinner I wanted to make something special, so I turned to one of our favorites - baked stuffed shrimp:

I just love the way the shrimp look all ready to go into the oven:

I also made baked potatoes and we had my favorite asparagus as a first course:

... roasted asparagus topped with a fried egg, salt, pepper and some grated Pecorino cheese. Delish!

Baked Stuffed Shrimp
Slightly Modified from Cook's Country Feb/March 2008

4 slices hearty white sandwich bread, torn into pieces
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup bottled clam juice
1/4 cup fresh parsley
4 scallions
2 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest and 1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper
1 1/4 pounds extra-large or colossal shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon butter, melted

Adjust oven rack to upper-middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Pulse bread in food processor to coarse crumbs. Transfer crumbs to broiler pan bottom and bake, stirring halfway through, until golden brown and dry, 8 to 10 minutes. Remove crumbs from oven and reduce temperature to 275 degrees.

Add parsley, scallions and garlic to the food processor and pulse until finely chopped. Combine crumbs, mayonnaise, clam juice, parsley, scallions, garlic, lemon juice and zest, mustard, cayenne and 1/4 teaspoon salt in large bowl.

Pat shrimp dry with paper towels and season with salt. Grease the broiler pan with vegetable or other light oil. Using a sharp paring knife, cut a 1-inch opening along the back of shrimp (where the vein was located) to butterfly it. Arrange the shrimp cut-side down on the broiler pan. Divide bread crumb mixture among the shrimp, pressing it into balls between the tails and body. Bake 10-15 minutes for extra-large shrimp or 20-25 for colossal. As soon as the shrimp turn pink, they're done.

Combine lemon juice and melted butter. Remove shrimp from oven and drizzle with lemon juice and butter mixture before serving.
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Friday, January 01, 2010

Breakfast Sandwich

My stepdad brought us some sourdough bread so I made breakfast sandwiches:

Scrambled eggs, crispy bacon and melted cheddar cheese pressed between buttered slices of bread.
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