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Thinking of summer BBQs…

It’s dreary outside today and I’m dreaming of sunnier days.  That led me to think about what I did in summer, and that led to summer BBQs.  I have a whole whack of photos from a particular crazy weekend of eating.  Why was it a crazy weekend?  Well, my friends and I held another BBQ/hotpot/sleepover, which meant a straight 18 hours or so of eating.  The next day I had brunch at a friend’s and it was my birthday potluck.  Needless to say, all I did was eat (and snap a few photos between bites.)

On the menu for the BBQ: strawberry citrus salad, veggie skewers, burgers, hummus and chips, sangria, and wings (I probably missed an item or two.)

Simple Veggie Skewers

  • peppers, sliced
  • zucchini, sliced
  • mushrooms, halved
  • Montreal steak spice

Take whatever veggies you fancy and toss them with some steak spice.  Thread them onto some skewers and toss on the grill until cooked through.  Easy and delicious!

Veggie skewers.

Burgers.

 

Strawberry citrus salad.

 

EM

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Zucchini Fritters

Wow, it’s already Thanksgiving weekend!  I will be blogging less for several reasons:

1.  School is getting heavy and I have a bunch of papers to write.  Boo on writing.

2.  I’m making an effort to have some semblance of a social life, so I actually have fun things to do in October, including attending the symphony and going to a fancy breakfast (and I will be blogging about that.)

3.  I’m currently testing a video game for a friend, and I’m currently addicted to it.

In spite of all that, I will still try to blog now and then.  Mostly during class time…multi-tasking, you know…

Anyway, I mentioned in my past post that I bought a giant zucchini at the market.  It was great, it only cost me a dollar!  The problem was, even after I used about half of it for veggie packets for a dinner party, I still had some left.    I needed to use it up and my sister M suggested that I use it to make zucchini fritters.  Great idea: anything battered and fried is bound to taste good.

I Googled a recipe and modified it, and ended up with something like this:

Zucchini Fritters

  • 1 lb zucchini, grated
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 egg
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • grated parmesan cheese

After you grate the zucchini, toss it with a bit of salt (a teaspoon should suffice) and let it sit in a bowl.  Squeeze out as much water as you can (I recommend using a cloth for this.)  You’d be surprised how much water there is.  Mix in the rest of the ingredients to form a batter-the cheese, salt and pepper are to your taste.  I suggest using less salt because the cheese is salty.  You can always add more at the end once you’re done frying them if you find that there is not enough flavour.

Heat a bit of oil in a frying pan and, working in batches, fry up your fritters!  I used medium high heat and fried each side for maybe 3 minutes each.  Drain them on paper towels.  I think next time I would add some green onion or chives to it.  Also, I would use more zucchini-I didn’t have one pound, so my fritters were more pancake like.  Tasted fine though!  I had my fritters with a bit of plain yogurt.  You could also dip them in sour cream.

 
 

EM

Chicken with Butternut Squash and Blue Cheese Sauce

A couple weeks ago Jan and I had dinner together (he cooked the entire thing and I sat nearby diligently taking notes and photos), and we had chicken with butternut squash and blue cheese sauce, steamed broccoli with butter and lemon juice, and white rice.  The sauce stole the limelight-it was so easy to make and so tasty!  The blue cheese really adds a nice flavour to the squash.

For the chicken, we had chicken breast with bone and skin on-this adds more flavour.  Saute half a yellow onion in olive oil and add the chicken and brown it in a pan.  Season with some salt and pepper.  After browning, add some vegetable stock, cover, and let the chicken finish cooking.  But of course, the feature of this dinner was the SAUCE for the chicken, so here it is!

Butternut Squash and Blue Cheese Sauce

  • about 1/2 of a butter nut squash, peeled and cubed
  • 1/2 a yellow onion
  • a cup or so of vegetable stock (just eye it)
  • salt and pepper to season
  • tablespoon of blue cheese

Fry the squash in olive oil until tender.  Add the onion and fry until tender…at this point the squash will start to get even softer.  Add the vegetable stock and season everything with salt and pepper.  Here’s a pic:


Cook a bit longer and mash everything up.  Add the cheese (you can use more or less according to your taste); we used a Danish blue cheese.  Melt it in, and then you’re done!  Serve over the chicken.

I also want to show a pic of the steamer “basket” that was used for the broccoli:

This is one neat kitchen gadget.  The basket folds up to fit whatever pot you use, so if you use a smaller pot, it just folds upwards.  I thought it was cool!  Apparently also very inexpensive and available at Superstore.  Love it!

All in all, a great night and great dinner.  Thanks Jan!

EM