One of my favorite restaurants in the whole wide world used to be California Pizza Kitchen. I just loved it- I always, always got the spinach and artichoke dip appetizer and the thai chicken pizza (on honey whole wheat crust!). When I find something I like at a restaurant, I am notorious for ordering it every single time I go back and this was no exception. As I have matured and my foodie-ness has grown in epic proportions, CPK just doesn’t have the same appeal it once did. That’s ok, it happens. However, every now and then I still get a taste for this uniquely delicious pizza and being the self-proclaimed foodies that we are, I suggested we try to make it ourselves. It turned out great and I encourage you to shake things up sometime and give this recipe a try.
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For St. Patty’s day I made an Irish beer beef stew. Originally I wanted to make stout braised short-ribs, but it turns out short-ribs were a little more pricey than I originally thought. We ended up purchasing a single bottle of Smithwick’s (an Irish red ale) and some beef shanks and enjoyed every bite.
I was going to call this a white lasagna but as you will see there are plenty of ingredients that are not white. Alfredo sauce was involved and I called on a previous recipe (which we featured twice) of ours for that. I won’t say that this was that difficult, but it did take a while which was well worth it because it was “one of the best things I made in a while.” That was an actual quote from Eileen about this great dish and I think she was right!
I’ve professed my love for homemade salad dressings on numerous occasions and I have made a few recently that were particularly delicious. The picture you see above is of a seared tuna salad with ginger-miso dressing, like one you would get a good Japanese restaurant. The work involved in this dressing mostly comes in the shopping for the ingredients! Otherwise, it’s pretty much a process of prepping the ingredients and throwing them in a food processor (or blender). It can’t get much easier and you will love the way it tastes.
A good thing about St. Patty’s Day, and especially March 18th and on is the surplus of corned beef and the reduced prices after the 17th. I always get one each year and this was no different. In recent years I have been rotissering (and making up words) the corned beef which turns out more like a lunch meat texture than a pot roast if boiled. Served with some roasted cabbage and made a few lunches also.
You see that gravy on the plate there? I have been calling it liquid gold because it was so, so good. You will be licking your plate clean, I can almost guarantee it. We recently received a Staub and this is another recipe from Molly Steven’s All About Braising using the cocotte. This was definitely a dish of a lot of firsts for me. This was the first time I ever cooked a whole chicken before, made stuffing from scratch (cooked inside the bird), and made such a delicious pan sauce. This may have been the best thing I ever made and it really was not too difficult at all. Like the pot roast it entailed many steps and a good few hours, but nothing was too technical or intimidating to take on. Again, this was a time consuming Sunday cooking event. I tried to time it so we ate before the AFC Championship game, but it took a little longer than expected and we ate at half time. Luckily since the Steelers had taken such a big lead my nerves were calm enough that I was able to eat!