Tuesday, July 7, 2009

If you can't take the heat, quit licking the grill, dummy.

When I have time off, as I do now, I tend to occupy my time a number of ways: Reading, trying to teach my pets to juggle, organizing various piles of crap around the house, sweeping up hairballs, staring at my pores for hours on end, internet shopping, cyber-stalking celebrities, self-diagnosing vague symptoms on WebMD, and finally- cooking.

I've been cooking up a storm here at Casa deVonPartypants lately, and I can confidently say that nothing I've made has killed anyone...yet.

Since I know y'all love food porn almost as much as you love midget clown porn, here is my last four days in food, minus the cereal I ate for breakfast and my 2:00 AM shame nachos.

Friday: White-wine braised swiss chard with...

...chicken with olives, capers & roasted lemons, loosely based on this recipe. So very, very delicious. I used kalamata olives since I didn't have any green ones, and I roasted the lemons a much shorter time at a higher heat, as I wanted them to get a bit browned.

Saturday found me craving these potato-tuna turnovers. I've had my students make them a bunch of times and they are like flaky, buttery crack to me. Phyllo can be a bitch to work with sometimes, but these are so good I don't mind. I mixed some spicy harissa (from a jar- sue me) with greek yogurt for a dipping sauce. If you can get the fancy tuna packed in oil, use it, otherwise just use regular tuna and add some good extra-virgin olive oil to the mix.

I thought I'd stick with a Mediterranean/Middle Eastern theme for the rest of the meal, so I made a spicy chicken, spinach & chickpea curry (served on basil quinoa):

And since we had some fabulous homegrown tomatoes and fresh basil from the farmer's market, I made a simple salad with tomatoes, basil and feta cheese with a basil-mint vinaigrette:

Oops- that's not food! How'd this snapshot of extreme cuteness get in there? Silly me...

Sunday found us wanting to grill. We had a friend coming over and some venison tenderloins in the freezer that we decided it was time to eat, so this is what I came up with- Balsamic-marinated venison loin with tomato-roasted pepper relish on grilled onions & zucchini:

Last night's dinner- Pan-roasted Wild-caught Alaskan halibut with avocado-lime salsa (basically just avocado, lots of lime juice, a little red onion, a little olive oil and some salt & pepper). I served it with arroz verde and green beans with caramelized onions, almonds & lime. The green beans were kind of an afterthought, but holy crap they were GOOD:

Oh, and we used the juicer to juice part of a watermelon so I could make watermelon daquiris:

I planted a cherry tree about 5 years ago which, up until this year I have been unable to actually enjoy as the stupid birds usually eat every. stinking. cherry. before I get a chance. For whatever reason, this year they aren't interested. These are super-duper-tart cherries, so they should be good for baking. Eating them straight off the tree isn't an option, unless eating a lemon like an apple is your sort of thing- sour as all get-out with a hefty side of bitter- yum!

Trouble likes to pull the cherries out of the bowl and bat them around. Yes, he's on the counter. I'm aware that he shouldn't be there. He's just so darned cute and persistent that I can't kick him off every time. Don't worry- the counter/cutting board get thoroughly scrubbed & disinfected every time I use them. I love them to death, but even I don't want my food to have overtones of cat butt:

So, I made cherry-almond pound cake today. It's still cooling, so I haven't tried it yet, but this is the finished product:
When I'm too fat to get off of the couch and bathe myself properly, you guys will be there for me- right?

Thanks- you're the best!



feisty said...

can i come over for some of that bread. man! everything looks so good...you're a domestic goddess today, eh?

John said...

No cheese?

Gwen said...

My pink parts got tingly when I read about the chicken with olives, capers & roasted lemons. This recipe will be attempted in my kitchen forthwith.

SkylersDad said...

This is all so yummy looking, but would be 10 time more awesomer (yes, it's a word) if you had pictures of those midget clowns eating it.

Steph said...

Wow, that pound cake looks DELISH!


Dr. Monkey Von Monkerstein said...

Those turnovers and that cake look to die for. Hubba hubba!

TheHermanator said...

For a guy who just nuked some Hormel Chili for dinner, this is Cruel ! Man, Everything looks and sounds delicious !! Cute Dawgy 2

Talk With No Thought said...

Cherry Almond Pound Cake? CHERRY ALMOND POUND CAKE?! Sheesh. Heading to the store now.

Anonymous said...


Do you have a brother??

'RISING SUN, Md. (AP) - A Delaware man who claimed he lost his pants faces drunken driving charges after authorities say the deputy who pulled him over noticed he was in the buff below the waist.

A spokesman for Maryland's Cecil County Sheriff's Office says 41-year-old Jonathan VonPartypants "was driving commando" and only partially covered with a towel on his lap, though he was wearing a shirt.'

WV- floper.


PS The foods looks wonderful!!

diatribes and dish said...

So much good stuff...I'm swooning over the halibut.

dguzman said...

Wow. Wow.

Don't worry--I'll come over and scrub those hard-to-reach areas for ya. Just make me up some more of that avocado-lime salsa stuff.

John said...


Kim said...

I can see that going for a visit at your house would not be conducive to my successful dieting. Lucky you.
At first I was going to say Brian would gladly leave me to marry you, but I changed my mind - I'd leave him to marry you.

Lollie said...

Hmm, yep. YES! I would! I would barter the shove and sponge hospital roll for a daily taste of your cooking. I'll be there when you hit 350. Call me! Love you Presh'!

Stacy said...

I know you hear this a 1000 times a day, but

god, your poundcake is sexy.

Cherries + almonds = from god.

Can I come over with my fat dog and help you eat that?



domboy said...

The food looks good, but I am disturbingly fascinated by your dog. He's so damn adorable.

Fancy Schmancy said...

I could eat avocado salsa with every meal, yummy. And yes, your faithful readers will help you scrub between the rolls of fat if you keep posting pictures and recipes like that for us!

T.J. said...

Samples, please.

You have my address.

Luisa Perkins said...

That is some good lookin' food, woman.

Mommy Lisa said...

I would eat red onion if it did not give me SERIOUS heartburn. I mean really? I can eat habanero sauce and be F.I.N.E.

But one little tiny diced piece of red onion and I am sick for days...



Bring that pound cake to Galtier Plaza and yell up.

I will be down to eat some.

Butrfly Garden said...

You should totally enter this, lady:

(PS - does "horical" mean something already? Because that's my word ver. and it's a pretty damn cool word. I'm going to google it and define it if it is not already.)