This Week in My Kitchen

I had a lot of fun this week in this favorite room...and I'm posting this with the great cooks at .

I said it was fun, not that everything was absolutely delicious. This stirfry is somewhat photogenic but was pretty bland. I'm thinking I should only use "Oriental" recipes from cooks who grew up with that cuisine or otherwise really know its flavors and don't try to bland it down for Americans or whomever....I also found that this took inordinately long to make, especially compared with my favorite "real" Chinese and Japanese cookbooks.

Ditto for this Italianate dinner...though unlike Oriental cuisines I have found good American-source Italian recipes....This was from the same recipe source, which I was trying out and won't be trying again.

Then I put the fun into the week with the most successful and by far most fun Fill-Your-Freezer Day I've had in years. The fun was especially due to Jamie Oliver, and I'll be posting about that another day....I also made an interesting cheesey bread from my so-far favorite whole grain breads cookbook. I printed out and used what I wanted of the general plan at .

Used up a lot of tea towels that day! (Does anyone else enjoy calendar towels? This one reminds me of a wonderful year...)
 With the (unfortunately very bland) broth I made with the chicken leftover bones, and with other leftover vegetables, I made a bean soup for lunch yesterday...(Thoughts on bland and not-bland broths/stocks at -- I would love new ideas if anyone has them!)

Then last night we had a very tasty chef's salad I made up and served with some of that cheesey bread. FYI, yours truly was as usual untrusting of cookbooks when I should have trusted them -- a basic bread book I'd borrowed from the library gave the super helpful tip actually to check the temperature of your bread to make sure it's cooked through -- it should be 195 to 200 F. I thought that the cheese in the bread might have been messing up my thermometer's reading so blithely got it out when it was way below that...and sure enough it was not cooked through in the center of the round loaf. But whew I was able to rescue that center, because it wasn't too doughy, by baking it at 250 F in not-terribly-thick slices, just enough for one meal for us at a time, turning it a couple times, until it was cooked through at last.