Since I’ve been home from Kentucky, I’ve done quite a bit of home cooking. I remade that lime cilantro salmon and made a couple of alterations. The tweaks made a difference; of course, they were made to suit my own taste: sauce was a little thicker and the skin was crispier. With a more reduced sauce, the flavour is more concentrated and with a crispier skin, well, everyone should love a crispy skin. We only had the option of buying a big bunch of cilantro to make this recipe so I had to find something to make that would use it all up before it went bad. I landed on a cilantro pesto. I didn’t follow the recipe to a T, I always add extra garlic and if the recipe calls for cheese, put a little more. I was skeptical trying out a cilantro pesto because obviously, cilantro has a very strong, distinct flavour, in fact I was never really a big fan of it up until recently. Made fresh, the pesto was super tasty but eating it for leftovers wasn’t as enjoyable. The cilantro flavour wasn’t overwhelming, I think the white wine vinegar balanced it out, the cayenne added a little kick, walnuts for texture and parmesan to make everything better. This recipe was not only super yummy but it’s also convenient for when you have a lot of cilantro and don’t know what to do with it.
Last Wednesday, we got our first Goodfood box. Liam’s aunt is already a member so she was able to send us a free one. If you don’t know about Good Food, it’s a genius concept. It’s like those goodie boxes that send you different snacks or socks every week but instead of already made meals they send you recipes and all the necessary ingredients to make the meals. They send you the exact amount of ingredients that you need so that you’re not left with, for example, a bunch of cilantro when you only needed a quarter-cup of it. If Liam and I weren’t sent a free box, it would be about $60~ for three meals for two people. Every meal we made we had something leftover for the next day. It’s about ten dollars a meal per person and they have family, vegetarian and gluten free options and you can easily opt out just for the week if you want to. For every week you decide to participate, your food will be delivered in an insulated box with ice packs. At the moment they’re only delivering to the Maritimes, Ontario and Quebec but if you’re in those areas and are interested in trying out a box you can click this link to sign up and you’ll get your first box free. If you’re not interested in this week’s menu, you can easily skip this week and continue skipping until there’s something on the menu that you’re interested in! You get a free box and I get credited 25$ so it helps me a lot too!
Our first recipe from Goodfood was Steak with Mosto Cotto glazed Mini Eggplants. I’m not usually a fan of steak but I think I accidentally chose this recipe. Liam doesn’t like eggplants so it was a bit of a lose-lose for both of us but it was a lot of fun to be in the kitchen together and cook it up. We sort of messed up with the steak, when we first took it off the stove and let it rest, we made our first cut and found that it was WAY too rare. We were aiming for medium rare so we tossed it back on the element. The steaks were thick and juicy which is what I like in a steak. We just seasoned it with salt and pepper which we were advised to do but I think that’s perfect for a good piece of meat. The mini eggplants were glazed with mosto cotto, which I’d never heard of but tastes like balsamic glaze but a little sweeter, then roasted in the oven. The mini eggplants were small enough to eat like figs and they were nice and sweet from the mosto cotto. We also made mashed potatoes and a red pepper tapenade. The mashed potatoes were obviously delicious, the red pepper tapenade was acidic and complimented the steak. We also “charred” some scallions but they just turned out flimsy so we didn’t eat it. This picture is really not aesthetically pleasing with the limp scallion, meat juices and bad lighting but this is our end product. It kind of looks like a face. Somethings I would change for next time: Cook the steak on a higher heat and I think that would make the scallion less limp.
Our second meal was Dry Ramen with Bacon, Roasted Garlic and Greens. If you look at this recipe then you’ll see how the ground pork was browned and in my picture, it’s not as brown. There was a bit of a mix up while I was cooking and I added the liquids before
browning the pork. This fucked up my process in the long run because I didn’t get to cook off the pork fat properly so the texture was way too viscous. I chose this meal because I really like ramen, and bacon…. and roasted garlic… So it was really the whole package for me. The greens that you see there are yu choy and garlic chives. I’d never tried yu choy but I’m a big fan of Chinese greens. I tried it raw on Liam’s recommendation but found it was too bitter for my taste so I spit out the little piece that he gave me. It was a lot better cooked and I enjoyed it a lot. It was interesting because my favourite thing about ramen is usually a good broth therefore choosing this, I was doubtful but was actually satisfied with the flavour. I want to remake this recipe correctly because if the texture wasn’t so sticky, it would’ve made for a much better experience. I may have overcooked the noodles as well teehee. Somethings I would change for next time: Obviously brown the pork before adding the liquids, cook the noodles less.
Third and final meal was a Summer Vegetable Risotto. I haven’t eaten risotto many times before but always enjoyed it so I wanted to try this one with zucchini and asparagus. The last time I ate risotto was a while ago so I wasn’t sure exactly how it should have turned out but I found that it was a thick and sticky texture. The flavour was good and
everything else was great. The recipe called for lemon juice and to garnish with lemon zest which created a multi-dimensional flavour profile. There was parmesan cheese in this too! Other than being really thick and sticky, I enjoyed this meal a lot. Why is everything I make sticky? (This just in, my mom said the risotto is supposed to be thick and not soupy. Aight.) Somethings I would change for next time: I think I cooked off too much liquid for my arborio and that’s why it turned out thick. My element browned my garlic and shallots quickly so I should probably cook it a) in a smaller pot and/or b) on a lower heat.
I had a lot of fun cooking with Liam this week and we’re looking forward to getting our next GoodFood box. Aside from a lot of home cooking, Liam and I went on a double date with some great friends at my favourite izakaya in Montreal, Imadake. I didn’t take any pictures because I was so in the zone of eating and socializing but I intend to go back just so I can write a post about it. It was awesome food with awesome company which is all I ever really want in life 🙂 I know I’ve been a lazy butt lately but thanks to everyone who keeps tuning in!
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