Monthly Archives: September 2010

Notre Ardoise: September 18, 2010

We had a meal plan this week, but it never made it up to the board and we ended up improvising most nights, anyway. On Saturday, we ate homemade buns. The last time I tried hamburger buns, they were ok. This time I remembered a Rose Levy Beranbaum recipe I’d printed from the Post eons ago. Normally her recipies are really complicated, but these were easy and the result was excellent. Really excellent. Never again for store bought buns.

Saturday September 18 Grilled buffalo burgers and yellow squash, salade de tomate. We also grilled chickpea burgers to have for lunches. They were better than other bean burgers I’ve tried, but could use some tweaking for next time.

Sunday September 19 Spinach pasta in marinara sauce. The sauce was made using the tomato guts scooped out for the tomates farcies.

Monday September 20 Tomates farcies (aka stuffed tomatoes) with rice

Tuesday September 21 Tarte tatin a la tomate (from Chocolate and Zucchini)

Wednesday September 22 Lobster ravioli, sauteed squash and peppers, salade de tomate

Thursday September 23 Grapes with the Apes! We ate at the zoo.

Friday September 24 Fried rice (using leftover rice from Monday night and all the random veggies we have from the farm)



Filed under Uncategorized

Mutant cucumbers and dum aloo

By popular request, here is my recipe for dum aloo. It may have come from Julie Sahni by way of S’s father, but I’ve never checked my hand written recipe against the book. It’s an impressive dish that’s easy to make. Prepping the potatoes takes  some time, but after that it’s quick. We’ve made it for various people over the years, and it’s always a hit – so rich and so delicious.

But first, a picture. Every post needs a picture, but I don’t have one of dum aloo. We’re eating our way through a bumper crop of tomatoes from the farm, so we won’t be making this anytime soon (seems like a waste to use fresh tomatoes here). Instead I’ll share a picture of Rufus lounging next to one of our garden cucumbers. 

We planted an Armenian Burpless, which is a very pale variety with distinctive ridges. Left alone, they can get quite large. This particular cucumber was hiding somewhere in the middle of the mess of vines. By the time we saw it, it was big. I have a hard time capturing scale in pictures, so when I saw Rufus napping next to this beast I was quick to take advantage. For those of you who don’t know, Rufus is not a dainty cat, last weighing in at more than 15 pounds.


Without further ado, the recipe:

Dum Aloo

12 small potatoes (baby red or fingerling)
7 tb veggie oil (enough to shallow fry the potatoes)
1 1/2 c finely chopped onion
1 tb finely chopped ginger
2 ts ground cumin
4 ts ground coriander
1 ts tumeric
1/2 to 1 ts cayenne
1 ts garam masala
2 c chopped or pureed tomatoes (like I said, I think it’s a waste to use fresh since canned are fine)
2/3 c plain yogurt (full fat is best)
4 ts salt (this is waaaay too much, use 1/2 to 1 ts total and then adjust to taste)
2/3 c heavy cream

1. Prep potatoes: peel and prick with a fork in 4-5 places. Rinse in cold water and then pat very dry with a clean dish towel. They should be bone dry before the next step or else they’ll sputter in the oil.

2. Fry potatoes: Heat 5 tb oil in pot until very hot. Fry potatoes until golden brown on all sides. Drain on paper towels.

3. Sauce: If necessary, add remaining oil to pan (I never do). Fry onions until caramel brown, stirring constantly. This takes time, so don’t skimp. The onions should be deeply colored (past carmelized) but not super dark brown (like I’d do for a curry, for instance). Add ginger and stir for about a minute. Add spices, and stir for less than a minute. Add tomatoes, stir. Reduce heat and add yogurt and salt. Stir until incorporated.

4. Put it all together: Add potatoes in a single layer and bring it to a simmer. Simmer very very gently, covered, for 35 minutes. Be careful not to curdle the yogurt, so keep the heat very low. The last step is to stir in the cream.

Try to prep at least a few hours before you serve it.


Filed under Uncategorized

Notre Ardoise: September 11, 2010


Filed under Uncategorized

Notre Ardoise: September 4, 2010

Some items were moved around this week, but the plan was flexible enough that it all worked. Grilling chicken over the weekend made a quick weeknight meal. Mental note that spring rolls, although not cooked, are not quick. This can only be a weeknight meal with two people chopping and rolling. There has been so much food this week that we have to eat leftovers tonight and save sambar for tomorrow. Halwa was bumped from last week (I should write a post about my breakfast halwa… it’s based on a suji halwa recipe, but altered to be more breakfast appropriate!)


Filed under Uncategorized

Notre Ardoise: August 28, 2010

A meal plan two weeks in a row! It was a pizza heavy week – we ate out twice, having pizza both times, and then I made a pizza later in the week. Meals were pretty quick – I made the gumbo the same night as the pizza so we would just have to reheat it the next night.


Filed under Uncategorized