Recommend me a food

Apparently, people like to eat.

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acb
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby acb » Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:37 pm UTC

I tend to use it as a starch with any kind of food, as it is so quick and easy. I especially like it with salmon and green veg or a salad, but most things work.

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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Nath » Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:51 pm UTC

Couscous can also be eaten as a dessert, with dried fruits, nuts, cinnamon etc.

One slightly unusual thing I sometimes make with couscous is uppma, a south Indian breakfast food. The texture of couscous uppma is a little non-traditional, but it works.

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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby PAstrychef » Wed Nov 11, 2009 5:09 am UTC

Couscous also comes in different sizes. The larger size is sometimes called maftoul or Israeli couscous.
It's great under just about any kind of stew, or you can mix dryish stuff in with it-chopped chicken and veg, spiced nuts and mint and raisins and so on. I've served a sweet couscous made with a cinnamon syrup and garnished with candied fried carrot strips.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Bakemaster » Wed Nov 11, 2009 6:00 am UTC

When I used to work at Harvard they had a rotating international buffet in the cafeteria (B-school anyway), and on Lebanon days they'd do this insanely amazing thing with the big couscous and lamb and apricot. SO. FUCKING. GOOD. I wish I knew how to make it.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Axman » Wed Nov 11, 2009 7:26 pm UTC

It's probably easier to make than you think. Cooking in hot places involves not fucking around in the kitchen and lots of little old ladies doing assembly line work. Sear up a leg of lamb, add your chopped veggies, guess at the spices, toss in apricots (I prefer dates but meh) and stew it to bits. Of course, you don't need a pile of little old ladies to make couscous anymore, you can buy the stuff, but I like to keep one or two in the garage just in case.

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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby The Utilitarian » Sat Dec 05, 2009 3:17 am UTC

Alright so I need suggestions for an appetizer. I'm planning on serving dinner for four in the nearish future. Main course will be garlic lemon prawns over pasta, most likely with some kind of pesto sauce. Looking for something fairly simple, master chef I am not.

suggestions?
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby poxic » Sat Dec 05, 2009 3:46 am UTC

Your dinner doesn't include a lot of veggies, so a tray of raw veg with dip would be good. Smallish-cut broccoli or cauliflower, baby carrots, strips of red and yellow bell pepper, and/or short chunks of celery or zucchini. Throw in a more exotic veg or two: jicama and fennel (stalks or bulb) are nice raw, or include some cubes of mango and papaya with the veg.

For dip, it depends on the amount of work and/or expense you're willing to bear. Good old ranch is adequate for most ordinary veg. A strong, creamy garlic dip is delicious and works with almost anything. Simple curry dips can be nice: pick your favourite curry powder or mix and stir it into mayonnaise and/or sour cream.

I don't have any specific dip recipes at hand, but Googling for "easy dip recipe" or something like it will turn up a lot of options. I'm sure Bakemaster and PAstrychef will be along to add suggestions far superior to mine, too.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby The Utilitarian » Sat Dec 05, 2009 4:39 am UTC

poxic wrote:Your dinner doesn't include a lot of veggies, so a tray of raw veg with dip would be good. Smallish-cut broccoli or cauliflower, baby carrots, strips of red and yellow bell pepper, and/or short chunks of celery or zucchini. Throw in a more exotic veg or two: jicama and fennel (stalks or bulb) are nice raw, or include some cubes of mango and papaya with the veg.

For dip, it depends on the amount of work and/or expense you're willing to bear. Good old ranch is adequate for most ordinary veg. A strong, creamy garlic dip is delicious and works with almost anything. Simple curry dips can be nice: pick your favourite curry powder or mix and stir it into mayonnaise and/or sour cream.

I don't have any specific dip recipes at hand, but Googling for "easy dip recipe" or something like it will turn up a lot of options. I'm sure Mr. Bakerstein and PAstrychef will be along to add suggestions far superior to mine, too.

I am likely including (most likely) rosemary roast carrots as a vegetable side, forgot to meantion that.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Bakemaster » Sat Dec 05, 2009 5:54 am UTC

Stuffed mushrooms are versatile, present well and aren't a ton of work. Your main dish is full of very strong flavors, and I think your rosemary roast carrots should have enough flavor to stand up well against that; stuffed mushrooms could provide an opening with a bit more subtlety, for contrast. As for what you stuff them with, well—any restrictions? Go nuts, really; look up some recipes for guidelines, you can use rice or most any grain for a light base to the stuffing, or breadcrumbs for something heavier. What's in my mind right now is a stuffing of wild rice and a bit of small-dice ham, but really there are a million ways to go and I'm not sure if you want to introduce a shrimp entree with a pork appetizer? It could be weird, it could be awesome. And of course you have your choice of mushrooms to work with.

Alternately, you could cook up some couscous, quinoa, or the like, throw in some vegetables to make a pilaf, and serve it in little cabbage leaf boats. Might end up peeling off the outer leaves to find an appetizer-size one, but there's a thousand ways to use them later as well (slaw, soup, gyoza, etc).

Chip, dip and crudite is also a great option, especially with some more interesting veggies as poxic suggested. You could move the pesto over here as a dip, if the fancy took you, and stick with a lemon-garlic butter or wine sauce for the entree; you could also go with hummus. Or there's ranch. I don't really like ranch. But I'm also not going to be at your dinner—unfortunately for me! Other salad dressings can serve just as well for a dip, too—balsamic vinaigrette, blue cheese, thousand island, etc.

The absolute simplest thing to do might be to serve a nice crusty bread with some oil for dipping. I had a great dip at one restaurant that was a layer of olive oil with red pepper flakes in, floating on top of a layer of very simple smooth bean dip. Just a very small dish of it, to complement the bread which was really high quality and dark, and deserved to keep the focus.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby YourReality » Sat Dec 05, 2009 5:55 am UTC

poxic wrote:Your dinner doesn't include a lot of veggies, so a tray of raw veg with dip would be good. Smallish-cut broccoli or cauliflower, baby carrots, strips of red and yellow bell pepper, and/or short chunks of celery or zucchini. Throw in a more exotic veg or two: jicama and fennel (stalks or bulb) are nice raw, or include some cubes of mango and papaya with the veg.

For dip, it depends on the amount of work and/or expense you're willing to bear. Good old ranch is adequate for most ordinary veg. A strong, creamy garlic dip is delicious and works with almost anything. Simple curry dips can be nice: pick your favourite curry powder or mix and stir it into mayonnaise and/or sour cream.

I don't have any specific dip recipes at hand, but Googling for "easy dip recipe" or something like it will turn up a lot of options. I'm sure Mr. Bakerstein and PAstrychef will be along to add suggestions far superior to mine, too.


Ooh! That sounds really interesting, a sort of mixed dip affair. A fabulous suggestion!

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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Zohar » Fri Dec 18, 2009 11:45 am UTC

I accidentally a whole bag of carrots!

By which I mean, I bought an extra one by mistake. Now I have tons of carrots. Any suggestions what to make with them? I'm already making broccoli soup so another soup probably won't happen.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Bakemaster » Fri Dec 18, 2009 4:45 pm UTC

Any variation on this theme is a great use for carrots. They are a surprisingly sugary vegetable, meaning they caramelize well on the grill. You can also roast them, but grilled is my favorite.
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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Nath » Sat Dec 19, 2009 7:28 am UTC

Gajar ka halwa, a simple Indian carrot-based dessert. You can cut down on the sugar to make a less sweet version you can eat more of, if you want to use up more carrots. Many recipes kind of overdo the sweetness, particularly if the carrots are already sweet.

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Re: Recommend me a food

Postby Zohar » Sat Dec 19, 2009 4:36 pm UTC

Silly me... I'll make carrot cake!
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