Friday, September 14, 2012

Weekend Dinner Ideas

We're back to milder temperatures, but basil doesn't like to get chilled, so with the mid-40s low we've just had, I'm thinking it's time to harvest a goodly amount of my basil crop for a great big pesto.  Some will be used for linguine with pesto for tonight, while the rest will freeze beautifully in plastic containers sized for one-recipe uses.  I turn to my favorite old Jane Brody cookbook to do mine, but pesto recipes abound on the web, and it's basically just a matter of getting the right balance of fresh basil, pine nuts, garlic, good parmesan, and olive oil.  The question remaining is whether the linguine with pesto will be dinner itself, or an especially good side to grilled salmon (fresh wild coho fillets are $8.99 a pound at Sprouts, $14.99 at Whole Foods).

Tomorrow will definitely be out on the grill, trying out the bone-in New York steaks that are $5.99 a pound at Sprouts (they always say that bone-in is more flavorful).  To capitalize on the freshly roasted chiles all around us and our fresh corn season, which is surely eyeing its end on the horizon, the side will probably be creamy stovetop corn with poblano chiles from the New York Times.  I say "probably" only because a simple ear of Munson's corn is so tempting, and also because I wouldn't do steak and creme fraiche in the same dinner, just because of the cholesterol count.  Nonfat plain yogurt works as a creme fraiche substitute, but only with great care to keep its temperature down to avoid curdling.

For Sunday, we'll turn to the Nature's Rancher boneless skinless chicken breasts that Whole Foods has on sale at $6.99 for a two pound bag (now that I have their flyer in front of me I see they are "individually quick frozen," which was not on the web when I wrote about their sales) to do a chicken posole from Food and Wine magazine.  I prefer to make it with white meat chicken, rather than the dark meat called for, and it never hurts to throw in a bit of freshly roasted chile as well, while the season is upon us.  Sprouts has organic red or green leaf lettuce for $1.29 each for the side salad.


  1. Ah, there you are!

    Since you mentioned considering the salmon for dinner, I'm assuming you're opting out of the Sprouts swordfish. Have you tried it yet this round? Or did your most recent disappointing experience throw a wet blanket on the very thought? Think it's worth a try?

  2. Yes, sorry that the posts might become more sporadic as life gets busier around here. As for the swordfish, I haven't tried it from Sprouts again so far. I have the vaguest recollection that the very good previously frozen piece I had from there was actually from the USA, while the one with mushier texture was from the more common Southeast Asian locales. I think it would be worth a try just to get your valued opinion!