Tag Archives: Serious Eats

Meatless Monday: Macaroni and Cheese Part IX

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Part of our continuing series on the glory and splendor that is macaroni and cheese. See Parts: I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII.

So, this recipe is an adaptation of an adaptation.

Food blogging is an area where plagiarizing someone else’s work is very easy to do. Let’s take macaroni and cheese. No one holds a trademark on it, so ingredient lists are not unique or special. The recipe as it is written by the person who developed it, however, is. I come up with about half of the recipes that I have published her at Al Dente. The other half come from a book or website. Those works are protected by copyright and, while I do give credit, I’m careful how I use these items because I don’t seek permission from an author or publisher before I use the recipe. Transcribing Donald Link’s recipe for his smoked sausage and pork belly cassoulet, as it appeared in his latest cookbook, would be wrong on so many levels. Continue reading Meatless Monday: Macaroni and Cheese Part IX


Wednesday Dinner: Spicy Cuban Shrimp Soup

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Al Dente HQ is in the process of having its roof replaced. I’ll spare you, dear reader, the messy details about the job itself other than to say that the work crew has been here longer than planned and it’s not their fault.

As a result of the increased traffic and trucks in my driveway, I really don’t have a lot of room to haul out my grill at night. So, the pound of ground lamb waits in the fridge for another day. And, on a day where we topped out near 80 degrees, I made soup.

(Tangent: We went long stretches in Syracuse during the month of August where it didn’t hit 80 degrees, and not it has done so three times in the past seven days in September.)

So, soup on a hot warm day isn’t the worst thing thing in the world. This particular entry from Jennifer Olvera at Serious Eats has a crisp citrus flavor, which surprises you at each spoonful. Continue reading Wednesday Dinner: Spicy Cuban Shrimp Soup

Meatless Monday: Eggplant Spirals with Greek Yogurt

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It wasn’t until well into dinner tonight before I asked The Wife what she thought about the meal.

“It’s okay.”

Knowing that cucumbers and raw tomatoes really aren’t her thing, I asked her what she thought about the eggplant.

“It’s okay.” Continue reading Meatless Monday: Eggplant Spirals with Greek Yogurt

Monday Dinner: Roasted Chicken Thighs with Asparagus Panzanella

2014-06-09 at 17-11-15Panzanella has become the new hot salad here at Al Dente HQ, making multiple appearances over the past couple of weeks. They are great fresh, perfect for a loaf of stale bread and bright red tomatoes. Personally, I like the second-day panzanella, with the bread soggy from an overnight soak in oil and vinegar. Wet bread isn’t the best texture, but when done right, it has a great flavor.

Asparagus panzanella, like signaling when changing lanes and being nice to my co-workers, is something that had not occurred to me before reading about it online. In the case of the salad, Daniel Gritzer’s version featured a spatchcooked whole chicken served with the salad. I opted for something a little narrower in focus, since I was just cooking for The Wife and I (panzanella does not really translate to a Celiac’s diet, not that she would try it if it were). I restricted myself to chicken thighs, since they roast quickly and with little fuss, and do not dry out easily. Continue reading Monday Dinner: Roasted Chicken Thighs with Asparagus Panzanella

Thursday Dinner: Spaghetti With Chicken and Bell Pepper in Sherry Lemon-Cream Sauce

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One would think that a cream sauce might be a little rich for a mid-week dinner. One would be right.

But, you really only live once (a couple of times if you subscribe to such teachings), and a sherry-cream sauce on a Thursday night will not be listed by your local medical examiner as the cause of death. Cream sauce for dinner five nights a week, on the other hand, and you will likely need to put a cardiologist on retainer.

Continue reading Thursday Dinner: Spaghetti With Chicken and Bell Pepper in Sherry Lemon-Cream Sauce

Meatless Monday: Macaroni and Cheese Part VIII

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Previous Macaroni and Cheese editions:

Remember that car accident from the fall?

Yeah, well, apparently my shoulder has developed a case of PTSD because it has been screaming in pain for the past four or five weeks. I broke down last week and went to an orthopedist, who gave me a prescription for 500mg of naproxen (one Aleve is 220mg) and sent me to physical therapy. I was hoping for something less, um, physical. I wanted a pill. I didn’t actually want to do any work here. Unfortunately, that doesn’t seem to be the case.

Monday was my first appointment. It was your average consultative appointment, which I was warned would take more than an hour. This meant that dinner needed to be something made in advanced and reheatable.  Continue reading Meatless Monday: Macaroni and Cheese Part VIII

Meatless Monday: Eggplant with Roasted Tomato Sauce

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Eggplants are fickle little things. It’s a vegetable that does not taste good raw and it’s absolutely useless standing alone. It needs to be stewed, smothered in sauce or served with something to dip it in. The eggplant is nutrient rich, loaded with potassium and folates. And there is nothing finer than a good, slow-cooked eggplant parmagiana.

As a kid, my parents would pickle and jar eggplant to use in salads or other dishes. My favorite thing to do with them was to take a large spoonful of pickled eggplant and put it between two slices of Italian bread. Not the sexiest sandwich in the world, but full of garlicky, vinegary goodness. But I digress. Continue reading Meatless Monday: Eggplant with Roasted Tomato Sauce

Grocery List: February 16, 2014

list21614I have no idea what my problem is, but today’s grocery list was not an easy assembly. Usually, this is a 30-minute trip to Pinterest, Serious Eats and The Kitchn to see what’s good. More than 90 minutes after starting this morning’s assembly of the grocery list, I’m just wrapping up and writing this post.

Every time I landed on a site, I would be confronted by the harsh reality that nothing looked good. I have my four nights of dinners — late meeting Tuesday means takeout — but I’m about as excited to make them as I am to go shop for their ingredients. Ideally, I would be at Wegmans by now. Thanks to Sunday churching, 10 a.m. is the threshold of lunacy at my local supermarket. Families rumble down the aisles with the big-ass-should-be-illegal carts or, worse, let their children roam free and unattended. My hope is to sneak out of the house without The Kid noticing me. I don’t think this is going to be a good day to take a 3-year-old to the grocery store. I’ll do my part there, but I doubt anyone else will do theirs.

Enough complaining.

Thanks to a few timely retweets and Facebook shares from New Orleans restaurants, traffic has spiked around these parts. If you are new to Al Dente, welcome. Look around and see what we have done here.

So, a few weeks ago, I discussed taking Al Dente to the “next level,” whatever that means. In the coming weeks, you will see some changes here. I’m nearly certain that I’m going to move this to a third-party host. Of course, this means that I need to make up my mind on a design theme and get going on the look and feel. One of things I’m looking forward to is a better way to organize the recipes I have created and those that I have adapted/borrowed/used from other sources.

There’s no debut date, other to say sooner rather than later (Incidentally, these are the same ambiguous forecasts of dates I use at work and home. My co-workers and The Wife love it.)