Sunday, February 20, 2011

Sunday Savories - waffles, cherrystones, and a country ham dinner

Sunday dinner

So sorry I haven't been posting much, my peeps...busy times at Chez C.O. Of course, that doesn't mean I haven't been eating, mind...can't see that happening ! Today was a great food day, though, so I'm going to try to coax a post out of my sad, on-its-last-legs laptop...if you're reading this, then the old girl's got life in her yet ;)

We started off today with Blueberry-Pecan Waffles, a photo of which was the entirety of my last post. Once again, we seem to have a surplus of pancake mix - this time was an attempt at recreating the best beer batter of all time, made at my sister's on New Year's Eve. Didn't work as well this time - perhaps we needed to be a bit more tipsy - but we'll get that sucker perfected and blogged soon. In the interest of using up the mix, though, we did up a bowl via package directions, threw in a handful of chopped pecans and another of dried blueberries, two generous shakes of cinnamon and one of nutmeg, and ladled it into the waffle maker. A little of my beloved Grade B maple syrup...and a perfect, amazing, delectable breakfast.

Properly fortified, we made our way to Russo's. . Oh, how I love Russo's...I am so lucky to live so close, and doubly lucky that I got out of the house early today and didn't have to whack any grandmas to get through the aisles. Yes, I had to go to Stop & Shop afterwards for regular groceries - but that's not an issue for me; I actually like grocery shopping. Insane, I know :). Anyway, at Russo's we picked up all kinds of produce, including some gorgeous Rainbow Swiss Chard - my new vegetable crush. Tastes so good, and looks so cool on the plate  !! Not much of a recipe for this - chop into largeish sections, heat up some oil in a big saute pan (or in Mark's case, a wok)...saute a little crushed garlic for a minute or so, then throw the chard in, put the lid on, and turn it down. Cooks down in a few minutes...salt, pepper, and serve :

Rainbow Chard, sauteing away...

Home to cook....but first a light lunch : deviled eggs. Mark was making pickled eggs today, but I was able to snag a few for deviled eggs. I love, love, love deviled eggs. Nothing fancy about these...halved, hard-cooked eggs, smash up the yolks with mustard and mayo, back into the egg whites, sprinkle with parsley and smoked paprika. Heaven :). We also had a few cherrystones...they looked so good in the store, and really that's about all the excuse we need . We did them two ways - topped with caviar, and with Mark' killer homemade cocktail sauce - OMGWTF amazing :

What, so I keep caviar in my fridge..doesn't everyone ?

seriously, the cocktail sauce is killer....

Just a few light bites, in preparation for today's main kitchen guest : a country ham from the Fox Country Smokehouse in Canterbury, NH. We've been going to this smokehouse for's one of those places that you need to know how to get to : down a series of dirt roads for miles, through gorgeous rolling countryside...and then what looks like a barn in the middle of nowhere, filled with the most delicious smoked food imaginable. (Yes, you can order online from them as well...not nearly as fun though ! ). Mark's go-to ham glaze is good old Boar's Head  ...really the best stuff out there. He did an 8 1/2 pound bone-in ham 250 degrees for 3 hours, then 30 minutes at 375 after reglazing....and it was fantastic :

piggy goodness...
Along with the chard, we had the usual accompaniment to ham, at least usual around these premises : my infamous mac and cheese. I've posted my lobster variation on this before, but for ham, we go old school. I adapted this recipe out of a Yankee Magazine cookbook years ago...nothing fancy, but absolutely nothing better. This is what Culinary Orgasms are all about :

Baked Macaroni and Cheese

8 oz of your favorite short pasta
4 T butter, plus 2 T for topping
4  T flour
1 cup milk
1 cup light cream
3 cups grated cheese  - Cabot Extra Sharp preferred 
1/2 cup plain breadcrumbs 

Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.

For cream sauce : melt 4 T of the butter in saucepan and whisk in flour. Slowly whisk in milk, then cream. Simmer 5 minutes or so, to get rid of raw flour taste.

Melt the remaining butter, and stir in the breadcrumbs.

Layer the pasta, cheese, sauce in a baking dish...then another layer of pasta, cheese, sauce...then top with a last layer of cheese. Top with the buttered crumbs, and bake in a 375 oven until bubbling and a bit golden (20 - 30 minutes, depending on your pan)


  1. Your blogs are so lovely - always a delightful lift to my day. Thank you!

  2. ...have to agree with ya... the Extra Sharp is preferred around my house, too!

    I would absolutely love to see that lobster version. YUM.

    ~Cabot Creamery