Category Archives: Cooking

Moroccan Pork Shoulder Tagine with Spiced Couscous

photo (3)I’ve been cooking a bit, but haven’t posted here in a while. Things have gone well though, with me generally making dinners for the role-playing group I play Mage with on a weekly basis. This week was a Moroccan Tagine, which turned out splendidly. So flavorful! It was very delicious.

I made a few substitutions. I was feeling lazy and not up for extensive de-boning and trimming, so I replaced the short rib with pork shoulder, which I seared as whole pieces, but cubed before before putting it into the oven. Also, I don’t own a tagine, so this was all done with the wonderful cassarole dish some wonderful friends got me recently as a wedding present. The oven time was 2 hours instead of 2.5, but that was perfect with the cubed pork. Oh, and I may have used slightly more onion that this recipe calls for since I used a whole small yellow onion instead of half a large one.

Super-successful – will definitely make again.

 

Shrimp and Mango Curry

MangoShrimpCurry

 

Recipe!

So far, this is easily the best food I’ve made. It’s the first dish where I would definitely go to a restaurant to eat it and I can’t wait to make it again (which is why I’m making it again tomorrow). It’s so good.

A couple of notes though:

  1. I forgot the potato. The result was that this was amazingly delicious, but not particularly filling. I’ll fix that next time.
  2. The recipe says to cut your mango into strips, but I (or rather, Oryx) just cut it into chunks because everyone knows that chunks > strips. I wouldn’t change that.

Ethiopian Lentil Soup

EthiopianLentilStew

 

Recipe!

Up until this point, it would be fair to say that I had never over-seasoned anything. And I was tired of making things that were a little bland. So for this dish, I tasted it frequently and kept adding the berbere mix. The end result was very good, but definitely a little on the spicy side for me and Laura. Also – importantly – I need to get better at looking at servings when I go to buy ingredients, because that recipe makes an incredible amount of stew.

Cajun Sole

CajunSole

Veggies recipe!

We went to the store looking for catfish and a few specific vegetables and discovered that they had basically none of it. So we got sole instead, and that turned out just really well. Definitely the best fish I’ve made.¬†For the side we couldn’t find mirliton and so got zucchini and mushrooms instead, which worked out great.

 

Thai Lemongrass Shrimp

Thai soup

 

Recipe!

I made this for Laura and a couple of friends and I screwed it up pretty badly. I forgot to buy curry paste and one of the two cans of coconut milk I got was light. So very early in the process it was clear that this was on its way towards being both watery and bland. I tried to recover by letting it boil off more of the liquid and by adding an incredible amount of the lemongrass curry I was basing it on. The result was still a bit too coconutty for my tastes, but in general it turned out to be a success.

 

Za’atar Chicken

Chicken

 

As mentioned in my last post, the za’atar salad was a bit too green for me. But I wanted to get a sense for the seasoning so I made myself a super-basic dish which consisted of putting za’atar on grilled chicken and adding rice and raisens. Not particularly exciting, I know, but I liked it a lot.

Chinese Five Spice Glass Noodles

Noodles

 

Recipe!

This was an especially exciting dish because it gave me an excuse to buy a mortar and pestle. It was also exciting because it was tasty, although maybe slightly bland.

When I made it, I made both tofu and chicken so that various people could have it various ways and I ended up sad because the tofu didn’t turn out well. Super dry and not appetizing. I need to learn more about tofu.