Monday, May 24, 2004

Friday night we were going to have chicken, but Jeff said he felt like we'd had a lot of chicken lately. I pointed out we actually hadn't had ANY chicken in over a week, but apparently, this wasn't about what we had or hadn't eaten.

So we got some ground beef and bacon and cheese and onions and had hamburgers with grilled onions. And bacon. And cheese. Yum. My hamburger secret could not be simpler- add a little Worcestershire sauce to your ground beef.

Saturday night we had our future wedding officiant over for dinner and, since I'd been reading Something From The Oven: Reinventing Dinner in 1950s America and was that day on the cake chapter, I decided to also bake a cake. We had steak with a chimichurri-style sauce and oven chili fries, both thanks to the current issue of Everyday Living, and a from scratch chocolate loaf cake thanks to Nigella. It was a really lovely evening, and it reminded me what a pleasure it is, good food and good wine and the company of friends.

Sunday we finally had our chicken- since I had reached the Julia Child portion of Something From The Oven, we had chicken breasts poached in butter with cream sauce. Julia seems to think chicken breasts will poach in a covered casserole at 400 degrees in 6 minutes. I suspected that wouldn't happen. I was right. (However, her tip for telling when the chicken was done, by touch- was dead on. The chicken was springy right when my instant read thermometer said it was done.)

With the chicken we had creamed spinach. Although I used stock, instead of cream- Julia does not say if this has a different name, but it was incredibly delicious, and just as good as creamed spinach at a reduced calorie rate. (Though you do still saute the spinach in butter, and fold in some butter at the end, so it's still not light. But it is goooooood.)

I was going to make bread, too, but decided on a JC dinner too late to make french bread. Instead we had homemade dinner rolls, from The Cook's Bible. If anyone knows American dinner rolls, y'all, it's going to be Christopher Kimball. I was raised with the frozen rolls in the carton- and those are fine- but these rolls were exquisite. I made the fan rolls, which were a little fiddly, but had the same shape as those boxed frozen rolls, which is what I wanted.

In fact, I brought one into work with me and think I'll go grab it right now. Mmm.