A mother-daughter conversation on food and cooking (mostly)

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Baby Eggplants

These two-inch baby eggplants were on sale at Sprouts fifteen for a dollar
this week, so I scooped some up without knowing how I'd prepare them.

I half-peeled them and cut them in half--Dick doesn't like the peel,
but I do--and instead of brushing them with oil, I put them in a plastic bag with
some olive oil and salt and shook them.  I put them on a piece of foil in a
baking pan and broiled them, turning once, for about 10 minutes total.

They were nice and brown on the outside but tender inside.

After letting them cool to lukewarm, I dressed them with olive oil,
juice of one lemon, a tablespoon of capers, a chopped tomato, and generous
salt and pepper.  It was delicious, even more so the next day.
This would be a good appetizer as well as a vegetable side dish at a meal.

Christmas Marmalade (Grammy’s Recipe)

3 large oranges
1 lemon

Cut in quarters, remove seeds and center membrane, and chop finely in a food processor or grinder.

1 20-ounce can crushed pineapple
6 cups sugar
¼ cup water

Combine oranges, lemon, pineapple, sugar, and water in large kettle.  Bring to boil, then cook at slow boil for approximately ½ hour, or until mixture jells slightly when dropped from a spoon.

1 small jar maraschino cherries, drained and chopped

Remove from heat and stir in cherries.  Pour in sterilized jars and seal.

This recipe is infinitely variable.  I often use a mixture of puny citrus fruits from our trees, and sometimes omit the cherries.  I usually store it in the freezer.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Yum--Roasted Okra!

This is a new way of preparing okra for me.  It's better than candy, I swear.  I asked to borrow Susan's copy of The Roasted Vegetable by Andrea Chesman and she GAVE it to me.  I plan to try many more of the recipes.

Roasted Okra

1 pound okra pods
2 tablespoons olive oil
Coarse salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Oil a large shallow roasting pan.

Toss okra with oil and spread in pan.

Roast for 15 minutes, shaking pan occasionally to turn, until pods are well browned.

Serve sprinkled with salt.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Condiglione: Fresh Tuna Salad

I used some leftover pan-broiled albacore to make this dish, which is loosely based on the recipe in La Place and Kleiman's Cucina Fresca.

I broke up the albacore and mixed it with 3 cloves minced garlic, slivered red bell peppers, chopped green onions, halved cherry tomatoes, and chopped fresh basil.  I dressed it with liberal olive oil, lemon juice, salt, and pepper and garnished it with hard-boiled eggs and black olives.  It was a perfect cold supper for a hot day.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Sonoran Hot Dogs

Green chiles! Hatch green chiles! The Fresh Market was roasting and selling Hatch chiles a few weeks ago, and though the staff didn't seem to quite know how to roast them (they were quite underdone), it was no problem at all for me to brown them a bit further in a dry cast iron skillet. Also the guy roasting them was wearing a sombrero and serape, like exactly nobody in New Mexico, but I'll take what I can get. The movement of green chiles eastward is a good thing.

We had people over to watch football last night. I made posole, and Will made Sonoran hot dogs, so it was quite a Southwestern feast.

The posole recipe I've evolved is very, very similar to yours — boneless pork, onion, garlic, green chiles, hominy, oregano. But I don't use any tomatoes, and I add carrots and bay leaves and a little cumin. Sometimes it needs a touch of lime juice at the end. For yesterday's batch, I tossed in some pork bones and a Maggi chicken cube as well. Very tasty. Even with mild green chiles, it was too spicy for the French guests, but they liked it anyway. For the Americans it was just right.

Will is very adept at wrapping hot dogs in bacon. This time he used two presoaked toothpicks in each dog, which seemed to keep things neat.

The Sonoran hot dog fixins:
  • mayo mixed with sriracha 
  • sour cream
  • beans
  • onions
  • tomatoes
  • grated cheese
  • pickled jalapenos
  • cilantro
We forgot to buy radishes, but I do like thin slices of radish in there, too. And I eat small fresh chiles alongside. Delicious.

At some point, someone spiral-cut one of my aribibi gusano chiles and put it in a half-bottle of Jameson, which actually ended up tasting pretty good. It was that kind of night, I guess.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Whacking Brussels Sprouts

In San Diego last week I had a fabulous lunch of the world's freshest swordfish accompanied by Flash-Fried Brussels Sprouts.  They were so delicious I vowed to make them as soon as I got home.

Further research revealed that they had most likely been deep-fried, which is something I do not do.  It's a mess, and it makes my missing gall bladder uneasy.  So I decided to fry them in about a quarter inch of canola oil, which worked out fine.  Heat the oil really, really hot and let them get good and brown, even a little crispy around the edges.  Mine took about seven minutes.

It looked like the restaurant ones had been halved and flattened, so I whacked mine with a rubber mallet.  It was fun and provided a nice release.  I think it make them cook faster.  I drained them on paper towels and seasoned them with salt, pepper, and a little ground cumin.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Cod a la Portugaise

I wonder where I got this recipe?  I was surprised I hadn't posted it before, as it's so simple and flavorful.

1 onion, thinly sliced
2 cloves garlic, crushed
1/4 cup chopped parsley
1 sprig fresh thyme, or 1/4 teaspoon dried
1 cup chopped tomatoes (canned OK)
1/2 cup white wine

Place the first six ingredients in a large skillet and simmer for five minutes

1 pound cod, cut in serving pieces and seasoned with salt and pepper

Place fish in skillet and bathe in sauce.  Simmer, covered, for five or ten minutes until just done.  Cod cooks very quickly this way.

1 tablespoon butter

Remove cod to serving dish and keep warm.  Boil sauce to reduce by about one third.  Stir in butter and pour sauce over fish.  Serve at once.

Thursday, September 5, 2013

An Afternoon Meal

My sister Katherine put on the nicest spread for a few family members on Sunday afternoon:  wings with blue cheese dressing; salmon and trout which she and Greg had smoked; kidney bean and celery salad and a tomato salad; a goat cheese log with apple and nuts.  Everything was cold or room temperature so it was very relaxing as well as delicious.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Pulled Pork

Pulled Pork

Here's how I do my pulled pork.  The recipe came from a newspaper many years ago.

Make a dry rub by mixing these ingredients together:
3 tablespoons paprika
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon brown sugar
1 tablespoon dry mustard
3 tablespoons coarse salt

Rub this blend all over a 5- to 7-pound pork roast (preferably a shoulder or Boston butt).  Cover and let rest in refrigerator for 1 to 24 hours.

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Place pork in roasting pan and cover.  Roast for 6 hours, removing cover after about 4 hours.

Remove from oven and let meat rest for 10 minutes.  Then pull the meat apart with two forks until it's shredded.  Add some barbecue sauce to keep it moist, and serve with extra sauce and cole slaw.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Zucchini Fritters and Sea Bass Tostada

I tried the Zucchini Fritters from the Bon Appetit link you put in your July 30th post.  They were delicious and easy, and the dipping sauce was especially perfect!

And a few days ago I had the most wonderful Grilled Sea Bass Tostada for lunch at Bluefin.  There were two small crisped flour tortillas layered with flavorful beans and rice and topped with a fillet of sea bass and drizzled with a sort of chipotle crema.  It was supported by a spicy and crispy coleslaw.  Just heaven.

Friday, August 16, 2013


Speaking of beautiful sandwiches, I made a classic bacon, lettuce, and tomato sandwich for lunch today and it was so good I almost cried.

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

For Future Vegetable Reference

Here are some novel ways to cook vegetables — roasting radishes, searing cucumbers, adding liquids other than water to the steamer.

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Silly Sandwich

On Friday's All Things Considered, there was a piece announcing the results of a listener recipe contest. The winner was an odd sandwich called Diane's Dad's Summer Sandwich. I couldn't get it out of my head all weekend, so I bought all the ingredients for it while I was at the grocery store this afternoon.

The sandwich contains crunchy peanut butter, sweet onion, cucumber, tomato and sharp cheddar cheese, in that order, bottom to top, on whole grain bread.

The order, according to the recipe submitter and the NPR hosts, is paramount — the sandwich supposedly isn't as good with the ingredients in a different order.

I made one for dinner (along with an arugula salad).

Was it magical? No. But it was very, very good.

While I was eating it, I remembered that White Trash Cooking (actually an amazing tome, scholarly and warm) has a recipe for peanut butter and Vidalia onion sandwiches. Apparently the peanut butter-onion sandwich was a favorite of Ernest Hemingway, too. So that's an established flavor combo.

Then I remembered a piece I wrote about strange Southern sandwiches several years ago -- and how good many of them were. Banana-mayonnaise, peanut butter-pickle, canned pineapple-American cheese.

The crunch of the cucumbers, peanut butter and onion in the NPR sandwich was very satisfying. And the cheese does bring a nice salty roundness to the whole thing. Cheese and peanut butter together make for a very filling sandwich, though — almost too much.

Were I to make it again, I'd put a super-thin layer of mayonnaise on the top slice of bread, and I'd salt the tomato. Sriracha would also go well in there.

But I think rather than duplicating it, I might experiment with some other peanut butter-vegetable sandwiches. Maybe add a hardboiled egg for a different kind of protein.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Pork Patties with Fried Cabbage

This is a tasty and quick dish, and very economical.  Grandma used to make it.  The cumin is delicious in the pork patties.

Pork Patties with Fried Cabbage (Bitoka de Porc au Chou)

 1 pound lean ground pork
½ cup finely chopped onions
½ cup bread crumbs
1 teaspoon cumin
1 egg
Salt and pepper

Mix ingredients.  Form into 6 patties.  Fry gently in olive oil and/or butter, about 10 minutes per side.

Remove patties and place on a bed of fried cabbage.  Add 1 teaspoon paprika to pan drippings and cook briefly, then add ½ cup cream.  Bring to a boil, turn off heat, and add ½ cup sour cream.  (I usually skip the sour cream because I don’t have it around the house.  I just use more cream).  Spoon sauce over pork and cabbage.

Fried Cabbage

½ head of cabbage, chopped
2 tablespoons butter
Salt and pepper

Fry slowly, turning often, for about 15 minutes.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Eating in Vietnam, Part 1

Will and I visited Saigon, Nha Trang, Da Lat, Hoi An and Danang, traveling by train, bus and plane and staying several days in each city. Here are some of the things we ate and drank during our 2.5 weeks there.

There is fruit everywhere in Vietnam. Every street corner. For breakfast at every hotel. Massive bowls of rambutan on the backs of scooters. Enormous durians. I’d never tried dragonfruit, which is beautiful but unfortunately pretty bland. There was plenty of mango — both the extra-ripe kind I love and some very unripe, starchy samples, which took a while for me to come around to. At one outdoor bar, a friend bought from a passing vendor a small bag of underripe mango slices with some chili and salt to dip them in.

  Banh xeo
I ordered this often, as it is the perfect lunch: fresh, varied, fun to eat, proteiny, vegetably. The most common variation was a huge yellow crepe, crispy around the edges, sometimes with a hint of coconut milk in the batter; it was folded around a little shrimp and pork and a ton of bean sprouts. That would come with a massive plate of herbs, lettuce and big mustard leaves. The first one I ordered, I sort of mangled my way through, but the next time, a server showed me how to eat it: Cut off a piece of the crepe and wrap it in a lettuce or mustard leaf along with some herbs. Here's a shot of one being made in Saigon.

I identified most of the herbs I ate during my time there — culantro, cilantro, rau ram, shiso, spearmint, Thai basil, rice paddy herb. But I could never identify the feathery herb on this plate. We were also served raw slices of elephant ear stalk a lot, especially with stews.

Cheese bread and banh mi
At one hotel where breakfast was included with our room, the breakfast menu was pretty minimal – just five or six items. I ordered Banana Bread. The server brought me two bananas and a small baguette. Will ordered Cheese Bread. His breakfast was Laughing Cow cheese and a small baguette.

Laughing Cow cheese is everywhere in Vietnam, maybe because it doesn’t need much refrigeration. All the banh mi sellers have it, and most every gas station and street corner vendor had bread and Laughing Cow cheese. I used to find it kind of bland and processed-tasting, but I actually got to like it after a while. Here it is with bread, fruit and a few other items at a riverside rest stop between Nha Trang and Da Lat.

I forgot to shoot any banh mi, because we usually scarfed these little sandwiches down rather fast. On most street corners in tourist areas there’s a lady selling banh mi. The best place was in Nha Trang and often had several people lined up. Fresh bread, a few kinds of pate and head cheese, a mild buttery mustard, pickled onions and carrots.

The bread was so delicious everywhere. We brought pastries once, but I made the mistake of buying what I decided upon eating it was a durian-flavored Twinkie. So that was pretty unpleasant. I meant to try fresh durian, which was everywhere, but never got around to it. It really does smell like garbage.
Stir fries
In Dalat, the food was homier, more suited to the cooler climate. I loved it. This tofu, bell pepper and lemongrass stir fry (above) was among the best things I ate there: a serious amount of lemongrass shavings crushed together with dried red chiles, with the tofu fried and crispy. The onions we had everywhere there were small, sweet and fresh-tasting. At that meal, Will had pork and tofu; we also had some water spinach (morning glory) with fried garlic in a light broth.
Also in Da Lat, here's pork and pale green cauliflower (me) and a fried pork chop (Will). Notice all the different kinds of chile on the table: fresh, pickled, dried and crushed in a paste or in a sauce.

Train food
The food on both our train trips was excellent. Beef skewers, lemongrass-stewed chicken, green beans, rice, water spinach in broth. There was a baggie of fresh chiles taped to the meal cart, so I snagged some of those. The meal was 35,000 dong apiece, so about $1.70.

Amusing Western food
When we had to leave before breakfast one day, our hotel packed us a breakfast: Wonderbread sandwiches containing cucumbers, green onions, cocktail weenie slices, a little strip of string cheese, and a sort of pale processed bologna we saw here and there. There was a baggie of ketchup in the bag, and two bananas.

Amazing foreign food
The Indian restaurants we visited were uniformly excellent — hot, fresh naan; tons of garlic; fresh veggies; tandoori fish chunks bubbled and browned like marshmallows; spicy curries with fresh curry leaves. We also had some splendid German food — housemade brats, beef rolls, pickled cabbage — and some okay Italian and Spanish food.

This is the pho from Big Bowl, a fast-food breakfast joint at the Danang airport. Even fast food at the airport comes with a side plate of fresh herbs.

We also ate pho at Pho 2000, where Bill Clinton once did. And we had it for breakfast here and there.

Hot pots and drunk pockets
There are a lot of clay pot-style dishes everywhere; in fact, I made one during my cooking class (see Part 2). We had a less fancy but similar take at a restaurant near our hotel in Saigon, where we saw the owner carry out a steaming hot foil packet of food to a table; we pointed at it and got our own delivered soon after. It was soft fried tofu, mushrooms and veggies in a piping hot brown sauce, served with a side of puffed up fried noodles. Excellent late-night food.

Especially in Nha Trang, seafood was bigtime, and we had grilled fish and fish stews a lot. The ubiquitous mackerel was very fresh and not very oily — almost like a white fish, it was so mild and sweet. I also had some nice mild red snapper.

My favorite seafood, though, was at SH Garden in Saigon, a beautiful rooftop restaurant with Japanese and Vietnamese influences. We took a rickety old wood-and-wrought-iron lift up to it. The first time we went, we had these clams with butter, garlic and chile — we just an appetizer there and moved on. The second time, I ordered a fish called scad, grilled with a sticky, sour-sweet tamarind sauce and served with lettuce leaves, herbs and rice noodles for wrapping it in. The scad was pretty bony but absolutely lovely. It reminded me of trout — rich, but not gray or oily.
SH Garden also served Will this amazing stewed fatty pork with eggs. The broth was surprisingly delicate — maybe made with dashi?

Food on skewers
In Da Lat, there were lots of skewered meat vendors. The selection was impressive: chicken organ meats, eggs, prepared sausages, homemade sausages, whole birds, plus the usual pork, beef and chickens cuts. My favorite was a slightly sweet lemongrass pork sausage.

Coffee and tea
I quit drinking coffee three years ago, but in Vietnam I started again. It’s just so good there: inky black, smooth, over ice, with condensed milk if you want it. It’s often served with iced lotus tea or jasmine tea alongside (unless the temperature was below 85 or so, in which case the tea was served hot, as here).

In Da Lat, we had some warm artichoke tea, which is made with just straight-up dried artichoke. It’s good for your liver, everyone says. It’s surprisingly roasty-malty, with natural sweetness and pleasant hints of artichoke flavor.

There are several decent domestic lagers, of which the red-label Saigon Beer was my favorite. At cheap places, it cost about 12,000 dong, so around $0.60 a bottle.

I got tired of beer every now and then — it’s like water when you drink it so much. I would occasionally order a gin and tonic or other liquor drink, but the liquor was usually watered down, even at fancier places, or tasted unlike the brand in ways that made me suspect it was cut with other spirits. I bought some $4 "Wall Street blended spirit" scotch so we could have a cocktail in the room, but it wasn’t very good. Peaty and salty, but blended with a local vodka-type thing.

This mojito with fresh chile in it was the exception to our lame drinks. Strong, balanced, with just a warm tingle from the chile, not too much. Also I had a negroni at Larry’s Bar, a swank place in the basement of the Dalat Palace Hotel, which was quite awesome.

The local rum in Nha Trang was good – very sweet and banana-y.

In Dalat, they make wine from mulberries. The red I tried (a grape/mulberry blend) was pretty impressive: dry, not complex but quite drinkable.

In Danang we ate pizza at Luna Pub, and the house red — a carmenere, I think — was the best house red I’ve ever had. I wish I could remember more about it than that.

I took a cooking class while I was over there; I'll write about that in an upcoming post.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

More Vegetables, Please

I don't know whether it's the increasing heat or my increasing age, but I find meat less appetizing all the time.  As a result, I love vegetables more and want to try new preparations and make meals centered around them.  Last night the menu was chard and artichoke pie with goat cheese; wild rice salad; and carrots from the garden.

For the chard pie I layered a round shallow baking dish (greased) with artichoke hearts.  I steamed the chard until tender, then drained and chopped it when cool.  I mixed the chard with 3 eggs, salt, pepper, and a touch of nutmeg and poured it over the artichokes.  I beat 4 ounces of softened goat cheese with some cream to make it thin enough to spread and seasoned it with dill weed.  This I poured over the chard and spread it around.  I baked the pie for about 40 minutes at 350 degrees.

Wild Rice Salad (loosely based on an idea from Joy of Cooking)

Cook 1/2 cup wild rice according to package directions.  (I used almost 3 cups of water in the rice cooker.  I started with 2 cups of water had to add more and cook again twice, because I like my wild rice mostly exploded.  It took almost an hour).

When cool, add:
2 tablespoons currants
A few chopped dried apricots
2 green onions, sliced
1/2 red bell pepper, finely diced
1/3 cup chopped pecans
1/4 cup chopped parsley

Dress with a lime vinaigrette:
2 tablespoons lime juice
1/3 cup olive oil (or less)
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon ground cumin
Salt, pepper

I served the carrots in our favorite way, with olive oil, mustard, and lemon juice.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Pizza-Style Broccoli

I saw this in USA Weekend--a normally useless publication, but this is delicious and a nice change.  It's by Daphne Oz, from her new cookbook Relish.

Pizza-Style Broccoli

1 head broccoli, cut in florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/3 cup grated Parmesan
1/2 teaspoon dried red chile flakes
1 teaspoon dried oregano
Juice of 1/2 lemon
Salt and pepper

Steam or boil broccoli until barely tender.  Drain well.

Preheat broiler.  Put broccoli in a baking dish and drizzle with olive oil.  Sprinkle with cheese, chile flakes, and oregano.  Broil for 2 or 3 minutes, or until cheese is golden.

Squeeze lemon juice over, salt and pepper to taste, and serve at once.

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Cauliflower Flatbread

This was one of the strangest, silliest things I've ever made, but it was surprisingly tasty, so I thought I'd memorialize it here.

I've been avoiding sugar, white flour, and the like (also, red meat) for the last month. That's pretty easy: Just make different foods. We make curries and salads instead of sandwiches and pasta dishes. I'm not the kind to seek out special products (low-carb bread?!) or recipes to mimic the things I'm not eating. But I stumbled upon a paleo diet blog while looking up the nutritional content of something or other, and it had a recipe for cauliflower pizza.

The internet, it turns out, is teeming with recipes for cauliflower pizza.

The idea stuck in my head, and finally I just decided to try it.

Basically, the cauliflower gives structure to the ... well, it's not a dough at all — more of a malleable paste. Cheese provides most of the flavor and browning. And egg holds it together. I didn't expect each slice would stay in one piece, but it does.

Reading these two posts helped me: The Lucky Penny and Closet Cooking. I didn't squeeze the water out of the cooked cauliflower, though I'll try that next time. I won't recreate the entire recipe here — read their blogs — but here are the proportions I used:

1/2 small head of cauliflower, grated on a box grater, about 2 1/2 cups before nuking
4 oz cheese (I used cheddar because we have a lot of it, with a little Parmesan)
1 pinch salt
1 egg
1 t Italian herbs

I put goat cheese, roasted red pepper strips and marinated artichokes on it, and baked it on my Silpat, which was perfect, for about 35 minutes (it was very thin) at 400 degrees.

I couldn't bring myself to call it pizza, because, well, no, but I think flatbread is a reasonable term. It's very cheesy and really fun to make.

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Zucchini Casserole

I have made this simple casserole for years.  It's substantial enough for a meatless main dish--my favorite sides to serve with it are Anasazi or pinto beans, and a tomato salad.

Combine in a greased baking dish:

--1 pound zucchini, cut in 3/4-inch cubes and boiled until barely tender
--1 or 2 cups cubed Monterey Jack or cheddar cheese
--Green chiles, roasted and peeled, cut in pieces (or canned diced green chiles)

The idea is to use roughly equal amounts of zucchini, cheese, and chiles.

Top the casserole with a layer of bread crumbs mixed with a little olive oil, salt, and pepper.  You could use butter instead of olive oil, but it browns quickly, so be careful.  Bake about 1/2 hour at 350 degrees or until the cheese is melted and the top is brown.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Raw Kale Salad

I've made this several times over the past few months. It's inspired by the raw kale side dish I always order when I go to Good Life Cafe, a vegan raw food place in West Columbia.

I've used various kinds of kale, and all worked well. I really like the flavor of lacinato kale an awful lot, though.

Many raw kale salad recipes use the massage method, and it really seems to work -- it loosens up the intense fibrousness of the leaves and helps them absorb dressing without cooking.

With uncooked greens, I find a little serving goes a long way. One bunch of kale can serve many people over several meals.


1 bunch kale

Remove ribs and cut into thin (half- or quarter-inch) strips across the grain. Place in bowl or colander, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon salt, and massage with both hands for a minute or two, squeezing and kneading to make the kale wilt and relax.

In another bowl, mix:

1 clove garlic, minced
1-2 tablespoons tahini
juice of 1 lemon
pinch salt

Add as needed to make a thin dressing:

olive oil
warm water
honey, if the lemon juice is bitter

Toss with kale.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Lemon Bars Again

I made lemon bars recently for the big Green family monthly dinner.

I wanted a very buttery crust, and a nice gloppy top, very lemony. But I think other people like them a bit less lemony. I've had some pretty bad versions where people used lemon extract. The family recipe is wonderful but fairly firm, if I remember correctly, and I wanted a more lemon-curdy experience. I also prefer granulated sugar to powdered sugar in crusts.

I pretty much followed the thinner version of the Smitten Kitchen recipe, doubled, with a lot more lemon zest and a bit less flour to make it goopier. I think in the future I would use the recommended amount of lemon zest unless I was making an entire pan just for myself. The extra zest really ups the lemon intensity but was maybe a bit much. Also, I used regular 2-inch deep glass and ceramic baking dishes, not a cookie sheet.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Freely Interpreted Hoppin' John

So I am making a New Year's picnic to eat after our hike, and am faced with wrapping up every food tradition not yet observed this season:  mince pie, black-eyed peas for good luck in the new year, and Grandma's meatloaf which is mandatory at picnics.

I contemplated the mince pie recipe and something inside me (probably the place where my gall bladder used to be) told me that it just wasn't right to use the entire cup of fat required to make a two-crust pie.  I opted for a fruit cobbler made with mince filling, with my usual additions of a chopped apple, more raisins, and some whiskey.  That bourbon bottle looks bad on the kitchen counter at 10 a.m.

For the Hoppin' John Salad I used my Succotash Salad recipe, substituting a can of black-eyed peas for the lima beans.  Some cubed ham would be nice in this, but we've already got meatloaf.

The menu, for the record:

Green Grapes
Hoppin' John Salad
Mincemeat Cobbler with Ice Cream