Grabbing the Gusto

Deirdre Reid – Freelance Writer & Home Cook

Oysters -- Menu ideas for chicken, prosciutto, sage, striped bass, kale, sweet potatoes, shrimp, pizza, and oysters

Menu ideas for chicken, prosciutto, sage, striped bass, kale, sweet potatoes, shrimp, pizza, and oysters

Chicken saltimbocca

I haven’t had chicken saltimbocca in I don’t know how long, so I bought some prosciutto and provolone, picked some sage, and followed a recipe from Leite’s Culinaria. I didn’t have semolina, so I used flour instead, and added dry vermouth instead of white wine. The leftovers made excellent sandwiches.

Striped bass and kale/sweet potato gratin

The next night, a much simpler dish: striped bass (aka rockfish in the DMV) fillets baked with lemon juice, Aleppo pepper flakes, garlic powder, and butter. On the side, kale and sweet potato gratin, a favorite we haven’t had in a long time.

Oysters -- Menu ideas for chicken, prosciutto, sage, striped bass, kale, sweet potatoes, shrimp, pizza, and oysters

Super Bowl decadence

We went all out for our Super Bowl for two. For pre-game, we enjoyed North Carolina shrimp cocktail. I poached the shrimp in a court bouillon made with the shells, took them out when the broth reached 170°F, put them in a sealable bag, and chilled them in an ice bath.

A spicy Hawaiian pizza was ready for kickoff. My sourdough crust rose in the cool kitchen all day, so it was nicely flavored. On the top, tomato sauce, sliced ham, pineapple, red onion, red bell pepper, garlic, lots of hot sauce, jalapeño pepper, and provolone/mozzarella cheese.

I received a quart of shucked oysters in this week’s fish share, so I made Calabash-style fried oysters for halftime—it ended up being enough for two meals because we were pretty full by then. After consulting a few recipes, I came up with a dip of evaporated milk and eggs, and a dredge of 4/1 self-rising flour/cornmeal, salt, paprika, black pepper, and garlic powder. Wow. I’ll make those again.

Wishing you joy in the kitchen and at the table!


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Creative Commons licensed photo by Ben Stern via Unsplash

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