Week of September 19th
This is gearing up to be a wacky week in terms of menus as we have quite a few activities planned that include dining out. As such, I will be out of the kitchen for much of the week. So, what’s on the menu?
First, I will be slurping oysters and cracking into a nice fat crab or two at the Baltimore Seafood Festival. I recommend you do the same.
Also on the dining scene is an early, pre-theater dinner at a new (to us anyway) local restaurant — definitely more to come on that. We then have tickets to see the theater production of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. ( No lace Mrs. Bennet, I beg of you, no lace!)
And finally, I am attending my monthly Girls on Grapes night at Bin 604 with my good friend and partner in wine (among other things), Christina. We are actually given wine homework, which, get this, includes drinking wine. Oh how I suffer.
So after all of the above, below are my actual cooking plans for the week. I am only making two meals, but will be cooking enough for leftovers to get us through.
- Vietnamese Caramelized Lemongrass shrimp: I have made this dish several times and have yet to refrain from picking up my bowl and licking every last drop of this luscious, holy grail of Vietnamese sauces. The dish is easy to turn out once you have the caramel sauce on hand, so I suggest making a vat of it on a spare weekend and fill the pantry. While you’re at it, go ahead and make a batch of your own roasted chile paste rather than use the jarred stuff. Trust me. If you want a dish that blows your mind, take that extra step. Bonus — both the caramel sauce and the chile paste keep for several months, so double those recipes. That’s exactly what I did.
- Stir-fried broccoli with beech mushrooms and roasted chile paste: Use the same roasted chile paste I just urged you to make at home — two for one! No excuses now.
- Braised Indian chicken in white sauce with garam masala: serve this with a pile of Indian pickles (store-bought or homemade) and plenty of rice to soak up the sauce.
- Fried eggplant with chickpeas and mint chutney
- Grape Raita