Monday, June 6, 2011

Menu Monday and Summer Sunday Night Dinner

After a relaxing but warm weekend (temps stayed at 90 degrees or above all weekend), J and I wanted to make something tasty but cool to keep the heat in the kitchen to a minimum.  We also wanted to use some of the produce we had picked up at the Ferguson Farmer's Market this weekend.

This week's wares from the Farmer's Market
The result was the following menu:
  • BLAT (Bacon-Lettuce-Avocado-Tomato) sandwiches with London bacon from The Farmer's Larder
  • Massaged Kale with bunches of kale from the FM
  • J's Deviled Eggs with Dill--with dill and eggs from the FM; so called because he hates mayonnaise and I modified the recipe to omit the offending ingredient!
  • Dutch Apple Pie--we used apple pie filling I had made earlier and froze for less sweat in the kitchen, even though we did have to turn on the oven (375 degrees) for a while! 
The spread minus the kale
Yum!  Look at all those greens :)
The London bacon was thick, smokey and salty and cooked up much faster (and with much less grease) than you can find in the grocery store, not to mention that the meat was local and sustainable!  I splurged (at 2.99) on some good bread, sliced Italian bread from Trader Joe's, since we were using such high quality ingredients in the dish.   The result was delicious and perfect for a summer picnic or you know, dinner inside with the A/C on a Sunday night!

Massaged Kale, modified from Aarti Sequiera of Aarti Party

1 bunch of kale, stalks removed and discarded, leaves thinly sliced
Juice of 1 lemon (believe it or not we still have lemons from my parents' tree that they brought with them to graduation!)
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons honey
Freshly black pepper
Kosher salt

Kitchen Supplies:
Large bowl
Small bowl for collecting lemon juice
Cutting board
Sharp knife
Juicer (although a fork would also work)

In a large bowl, add the kale, half of the lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil and a little kosher salt.  Massage until the kale starts to soften and wilt, about 2 to 3 minutes.

Meanwhile whisk together remaining lemon, honey and lots of black pepper.  Then stream in 1/4 cup of olive oil in small bowl or ramekin, whisking to combine.  Pour dressing over the kale, toss and serve.

We let the kale marinate in the refrigerator for fifteen minutes or so while we pulled the rest of dinner together, which worked great as well!  Aarti's original recipe calls for one mango (cubed) and a few handfuls of pepitas to finish it off which would also be a nice touch.

Serves: 4

J's Dill Deviled Eggs, modified from The Taste of Home

6 hard cooked eggs 
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/2 teaspoon grain mustard
1/3 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
2 tablespoons Greek yogurt
12 sprigs of fresh dill 
Paprika, for dusting

Kitchen Supplies:
Medium pot, for boiling eggs
Measuring spoons
Small bowl

Place eggs in medium pot and then cover with water by approximately one inch.  Heat on high until the water starts to boil and then remove from heat, cover and let sit for 15 minutes.  Rinse under cold water and peel.

Cut eggs in half lengthwise and spoon out the yolks into a small bowl.  Mash them.  Add vinegar, mustard, Worcestershire sauce, Greek yogurt and salt and pepper and mix until smooth.  Place a spoonful of the mixture in each egg and top each one with a sprig of dill.  Arrange on plate and sprinkle with paprika.

Serves: 4 (3 eggs each)

Speaking of food, here is what is on our menu for the rest of the week:

Orecchiette Salad with Mint and Roast Beef
Kale Gratin--to use up the rest of our kale bunches from the FM; photos and recipe to follow!

Chorizo Brats with Grilled Avocado, topped with pico de gallo--photos and recipe to follow!  We had this over the weekend poolside and it was out-of-this-world good.  I can't wait to make it again and share the recipe with you!

White Clam Pizza--photos and recipe to follow!

Pea, Leek and Prosciutto Risotto--you know the drill.  Photos and recipe to follow!

Anniversary Dinner, Part 1: Linguine with Mussels and Clams and Pink Champagne Cupcakes--To celebrate our first wedding anniversary (official date: June 12th) I am recreating part of a meal we had here while on our honeymoon in Napa Valley.  The pink champagne cupcakes (which we served as one of our wedding cake flavors) will take the place of our cake topper since we did not save it after the wedding last year! 

Coffee with JDP
Picnic lunch of salami, olives, french baguette and cheese
Anniversary Dinner, Part 2: Dinner at a restaurant in Ste. Genevieve for a little weekend getaway; location TBD

What's on your menu this week?  If you are married or in a long term relationship, how did you celebrate your first anniversary?  What did you get your significant other?  I have a few ideas but mum's the word since J reads the blog :) 

P.S. KT's Refinishing School is now on Facebook.  Like my page and be sure to let me know in the comments if your blog has a page so we can be friends!


  1. OMG, I want a BLAT now! Those are my favorite sandwiches ... and all your local ingredients look especially tasty :).

    Congrats on your upcoming 1 year! My lovely husband is by far the HARDEST person to buy gifts for. So, for each anniversary, we've planned a weekend away. It's so fun and takes the pressure off gift buying.

  2. Yum yum yum! I'm a huge fan of the square plates.

  3. the BLAT sounds DIVINE! and the deviled eggs, mm! i was just saying how i'm craving them! i must make them now!

  4. I. Want. All. Of. It. including the things I cannot have like bacon =) oh bacon... love love love. ok so anywho - lets be facebook buddies shall we? =)

    Jenn @ Peas & Crayons

  5. These all look great!! You really out did yourself on this one. Love me some farmer's market fare :) Hope you have a great week with that great line up of food!

  6. I'm so trying your kale recipe this weekend when our farmers market opens! I can't wait for it! Uh, my husband and I haven't ever spent an anniversary together due to army crap, so no fun suggestions here. We do follow the traditional rules of gift giving - it's kind of fun. For our first anniversary I got our vows done in calligraphy (the gift is supposed to be paper).

  7. Wow all that food looks great! My favorite part about coming home from the farmer's market is using all the fresh food for lunch :)

    My menu this week includes only 2 meals, since I am going out of town on Thursday: Sauteed Chicken and Radishes with Mustard and Baked Pasta with Spinach, Lemon and Cheese.

    And I liked your FB page!

  8. Those sandwiches look delish! :)

  9. your meal plan made me hungry! :)

    my fiance and i went to dinner at the melting pot for our first anniversary! it was great!

    for our second anniversary we cooked a delicious meal together and had a date night at home.

  10. That all looks DELICIOUS-- and happy almost-anniversary!

  11. My mouth is literally watery reading the description of your bacon. Would be so perfect for breakfast this morning!

    The deviled egg looks soo good, KT. I want to try it - but I might use the offending ingredient too though hehe.

    I wish I have the patient and dedication to create a one week menu and actually stick to it like you do!

  12. I have been seriously craving a BLT lately, and that looks fantastic!!

  13. I still have never tried kale. I really need to, I keep seeing so many great recipes for it!

  14. Great menu plan! And have a happy anniversary on the 12th!

  15. wow the good looks amazing and your menu for the week sounds fabulous!!!


  16. Oh this looks so good and the shrimp in the other post sounds awesome!! I agree your menu for the week sounds so good!!


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