Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Week 1 of food coma.....

So, Christmas version 3 on the Central Coast was again "the best ever". This time it was just 5 of us in the house, which was definitely less hectic. There were no scheduled activities, it was nice to laze around, take walks, go to the beach, and just enjoy the peace. Speaking of the beach, this one turned out pretty good:
For Christmas Eve, I made cioppino, with fresh fish from the fish market in Morro Bay (supplemented by some crab legs from the grocery, they were on sale...). Local California halibut, the sweetest bay scallops, the shelled crab, and some fresh clams went into a thicker version of my family marinara recipe, just simmered long enough for the clams to open and the fish to cook.
This turned out great! I took my dad's advice and made sure the marinara was nice and thick so that the stew wouldn't thin out like bouillabaisse (like theirs did in Colorado this year.... sorry Dad!)

Some dead soldiers:
Oooh, learning how to use depth of field on my DSLR camera, hehe:

Cannolis to round out a semi-traditional Italian American Christmas Eve, then off to wait for Santa:

Andrew cooked up some quail to go with a spectacular mini-vertical of Loring Cargasacchi Pinot on Saturday:
All in all a great weekend for food, I feel like I had my fill of cream cheese based items though. Grand plans for New Years as usual, with photos to follow....

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Way overdue

I got this cookbook for Christmas last year (or maybe the year before), it was one of those "I should probably have this". I borrowed my mother in law's copy just previously to make something, I can't remember what now..

Anyhow, it really screams 80s to me, but I've been meaning to try making the famous Chicken Marbella. So I did, but I cut the recipe way down (the recipe in the book serves about eleventy billion people I think, sheesh). You know what? It was really good!! The balance between the marinade, the dried plums (er.. prunes), the olives & capers. I would absolutely make this again! Maybe even for company.

Speaking of company, the holidays are well underway and aside from our annual barbeque the day after Thanksgiving, we have yet to have company over. I'll be making cioppino and probably canolli (if I can remember to buy shells before Monday) in the Los Osos house for Christmas Eve, so I'll be sure to take some good photos and post on it.