Food is at the center of family, culture and shared time. My husband, his twin brother and I have been living together throughout the Quarantine and though we all have very different interests we tend to come together in the evenings to create dinner. Ultimate teamwork reveals itself as the three of us spin through the kitchen together, clear communication emerges as shared ideas and resources create meals. We break into impromptu dance parties, sing-alongs and lovely conversation, as we wait for water to boil, meats to brown, the oven to preheat, etc. These are the dinner meals we had from April 29th - May 5th 2020.

Between social distancing and the lack of leadership our interaction with others can be limited and fearful. These times in the kitchen hark to easier times. We taste sauces from each other’s bowls, share utensils, pinch salt out of a bowl, casually hold hands and dance. These small gestures give a sense of comfort, a sense of protection, a sense of stability in a time where very little feels comfortable, protected or stable.

April 29: Grilled Pork Tenderloin, Sauteed Broccoli Rabe, Mushroom and Spinach Sauce and a Bib Lettuce, Carrot, and Red Pepper salad with Tahini Avocado Dressing

Grilled Pork Tenderloin

  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 teaspoon ground coriander

  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

  • Salt

  • 1 1/4 pounds pork tenderloin

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  1. In separate bowl mix dry ingredients such as garlic powder, oregano, cumin, coriander, thyme and salt. Stir mixture with a fork until all the ingredients are well combined and they form a seasoning. This will be used as a rub to ensure the pork is well seasoned throughout. Sprinkle the rub over the tenderloin with a dry hand, then rub the pork with the seasoning over both sides of the meat, pressing gently so the seasoning adheres well to the tenderloin. Let sit for 2 hours.

  2. Grill the Pork Tenderloin to 135 degrees, alternatively you can roast it at 425 degrees for 30min. Either cooking method let the meat rest at least 5 minutes before serving.

Sauteed Broccoli Rabe

  • 1 lb broccoli rabe

  • 3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced lengthwise

  • 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes, or to taste

  • 1 teaspoon salt (preferably sea salt), or to taste

  • Lemon Juice

 

  1. Cut off and discard 1 inch from stem ends of broccoli rabe. Rinse to clean. Cook broccoli rabe, uncovered in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes, drain well in a colander. Rinse with cold water to stop cooking.

  2. Cook garlic in oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat, stirring often, until garlic is golden, about 5 minutes. Add broccoli rabe and cook, tossing to coat with oil, add chili flakes and salt  until heated through, 3 minutes. Toss broccoli rabe with salt.

  3. Transfer to a bowl and squeeze with lemon. 

 

Mushroom and Spinach Sauce 

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 8 oz mushrooms , sliced 

  • 3 garlic cloves , minced

  • pinch of salt

  • 12 oz spinach , fresh

  •  ½ cup of broth

 

  1. heat 1 tablespoon olive oil, and add sliced mushrooms and minced garlic. Reduce heat to medium-low and cook mushrooms and garlic uncovered stirring often for about 10 minutes.

  2. Add the spinach and stir on low heat just until spinach wilts, adding broth and deglazing the pan as needed. Taste for salt

 

Bib Lettuce, Carrot, and Red Pepper salad with Tahini Avocado Dressing

1 head of bib lettuce

3 carrots shredded 

1 red pepper sliced 

 

Dressing 

  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1/4 cup tahini

  • 1 medium-large avocado, peeled and pitted

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper

  • 1 garlic clove

  • 1 lemon, zested and juiced

  • 1/4-1/2 cup water

 

  1. Combine oil, tahini, avocado, salt, pepper, garlic, lemon zest, and lemon juice in the bowl, use the immersion blender to mix everything until smooth

  2. Add small amounts of water at a time until desired consistency

April 30: Grilled Marinated Beef, with a Tomatillo and Avocado Sauce, Sauteed Mushroom and Grilled green pepper, Grilled Eggplant and Herb Salad

Marinade:

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil

  • juice of 1 lemon (1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice)

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 1 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • cracked pepper , to taste

  • 1lb boneless chicken thighs

 

SALAD

  • 4 cups spinach, and bib greens washed and dried

  • 1 large cucumber diced

  • 7 radishes cleaned and sliced

  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

  • 2 teaspoons dried basil

  • 2 teaspoons garlic , minced

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 3 carrots veggie peeled to create strips

  • 1 avocado sliced

  • 1 cup cheddar cheese

  • 2 cups tomato salsa

  • Lemon wedges to serve

 

  1. Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chicken to the marinade in the bowl; marinade chicken for 3 hours in the refrigerator. 

  2. Prepare all of the salad ingredients and mix in a large salad bowl.

  3. Once ready to cook, grill chicken on both sides until browned and completely cooked through.

  4. Allow chicken to rest for 5 minutes; slice and arrange over the salad. Drizzle salad with cheese and salsa.  Serve with lemon wedges.

Tomatillo and Avocado Sauce

  • 1/2 pound tomatillos—husked, cored and halved

  • Half a medium onion

  • 1 jalapeño, stemmed and halved

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 2 Hass avocados—peeled, pitted and coarsely chopped

  • 1 garlic cloves, lightly smashed and peeled

  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro

  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano, preferably Mexican, crumbled

  • 1 tablespoon fresh lime juice

 

  1. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss the tomatillos, jalapeño and half onion with the oil and grill until medium char. Transfer to a bowl and let cool. 

  2. Add the avocado, garlic, cilantro, oregano and 1/2 cup of water and puree until smooth. Add the lime juice and pulse once or twice until incorporated. Transfer the salsa to a bowl and season with salt.


 

 Sauteed Mushroom and Grilled green pepper

  • 1 green pepper grilled 

  • 1 lb button mushrooms

  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil

  • 1 garlic clove, minced

 

  1. Grill the green pepper until chared. 

  2. In a saucepan Saute the mushroom, veg oil and garlic until mushrooms are cooked and have a golden color

  3. Chop the grilled pepper and mushrooms and season with salt and pepper to taste
     

Grilled Eggplant and Herb Salad

  • 2 large eggplants, peeled and sliced 3/8-inch thick

  • ⅓ cup chopped scallions

  • 1/2 cup minced fresh parsley

  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • 2 Tbs. chopped fresh mint

  • 2 large cloves garlic, minced

  • 1/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice, or to taste

 

  1. Brush oil onto one side of eggplant slices; place on grill, oiled side down. Cook until tender and grillmarked, 5 to 7 minutes. Oil tops, turnover and grill until tender, another 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, and chop. 

  2. Combine eggplant, scallions, parsley, cilantro, and mint in a large bowl, and toss to mix. Add lemon juice, and season generously with salt and freshly ground pepper.

May 1: Grilled Chicken Herb Salad

Marinade:

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil

  • juice of 1 lemon (1/4 cup fresh squeezed lemon juice)

  • 2 tablespoons water

  • 1 tablespoons red wine vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon salt

  • cracked pepper , to taste

  • 1lb boneless chicken thighs

Salad:

  • 4 cups spinach, and bib greens washed and dried

  • 1 large cucumber diced

  • 7 radishes cleaned and sliced

  • 2 tablespoons fresh chopped parsley

  • 2 teaspoons dried basil

  • 2 teaspoons garlic , minced

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 3 carrots veggie peeled to create strips

  • 1 avocado sliced

  • 1 cup cheddar cheese

  • 2 cups tomato salsa

  • Lemon wedges to serve

 

  1. Combine all of the marinade ingredients in a large bowl. Add the chicken to the marinade in the bowl; marinade chicken for 3 hours in the refrigerator. 

  2. Prepare all of the salad ingredients and mix in a large salad bowl.

  3. Once ready to cook, grill chicken on both sides until browned and completely cooked through.

  4. Allow chicken to rest for 5 minutes; slice and arrange over the salad. Drizzle salad with cheese and salsa.  Serve with lemon wedges.

 May 2: Lamb Vindaloo, over Cauliflower Mash,  Carrot and Yogurt Raita and Sauteed Broccoli Rabe

Lamb Vindaloo

  • 5 to 10 large garlic cloves, peeled

  • 1 2-inch piece ginger, peeled and coarsely chopped

  • 2 tablespoons cider vinegar

  • ½ teaspoon ground turmeric

  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin

  • 1 tablespoon Indian red chili powder (see note) or red pepper flakes

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 2 pounds lamb bone in, trimmed of excess fat 

  • ¼ cup olive oil 

  • 1 cup finely chopped onion

  • 1 32oz can of whole tomatoes

  • 1 cup of broth

  1. In the blender combine garlic and ginger, vinegar, turmeric, cumin, chili powder and salt and blend well. Combine with the lamb and coat well. Cover and set aside at room temperature for one hour.

  2. In a large sauté pan, add onion and olive oil and cook, stirring often, until lightly browned, about 5 minutes, add the lamb and cook, turning until lightly browned, about 6 minutes. Add a few pinches of salt and fresh pepper.

  3. Add the tomatoes and deglaze the pan, add the broth and bring to a boil. Taste for salt. Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until the lamb is tender, about 2 1/2 hours.

Cauliflower Mash

  • 1 large head cauliflower cut into florets (about 3 pounds or 1 1/2 kg)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil

  • 3 tablespoons cream cheese

  • Salt and black pepper to taste

 

  1. Place cauliflower in a large pot of boiling generously salted water. Boil for 5-7 minutes until tender. Drain into a colander. 

  2. In a large bowl place the olive oil and cream cheese, add the hot cauliflower and blend cauliflower with the immersion blender until smooth. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

 

Carrot and Yogurt Raita

  • 1 cup plain yogurt

  • 1 tablespoon butter

  • ½ teaspoon cumin seed

  • ½ teaspoon of smashed coriander seed

  • 2 garlic cloves, minced

  • 1 ½ cup grated carrot

  •  Pinch of cayenne

  •  Salt

  • 1 tablespoon each chopped cilantro

 

  1. Place the yogurt and carrot in a bowl. Heat the butter in a small skillet over medium heat. Add the cumin, and coriander, let them get aromatic and  then stir in the garlic and cook for about 30 seconds, Carefully stir the hot contents of the skillet into the yogurt and carrot. Add cayenne and salt, to taste. Let the raita sit for 10 minutes. Just before serving, stir in the cilantro.

  2. Heat to medium-low, cover, and cook until the lamb is tender, about 2 1/2 hours. 

 

Sauteed Broccoli Rabe

  • 1 lb broccoli rabe

  • 3 large garlic cloves, thinly sliced lengthwise

  • ⅓ cup extra-virgin olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes, or to taste

  • 1 teaspoon salt (preferably sea salt), or to taste

  • Lemon Juice

 

  1. Cut off and discard 1 inch from stem ends of broccoli rabe. Rinse to clean. Cook broccoli rabe, uncovered in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes, drain well in a colander. Rinse with cold water to stop cooking.

  2. Cook garlic in oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat, stirring often, until garlic is golden, about 5 minutes. Add broccoli rabe and cook, tossing to coat with oil, add chili flakes and salt  until heated through, 3 minutes. Toss broccoli rabe with salt.

  3. Transfer to a bowl and squeeze with lemon. 

May 3: Berbere Chicken Curry, roasted Carrots and sauteed Ginger Broccoli

Berbere Chicken Curry

  • 1.5 lbs boneless skinless chicken thighs, cut into 1/2” pieces

  • 3 Tablespoons butter, 

  • 1 medium onion, diced,

  • 3 clove garlic, minced

  • 1 tablespoon paprika

  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper

  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger

  • 1 tablespoon cumin

  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander

  • ½  teaspoon ground cardamom

  • ¼ teaspoon ground fenugreek

  • ½  teaspoon garlic powder

  • ½  teaspoon ground cinnamon

  • ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg

  • ½  teaspoon ground allspice

  • ½  teaspoon ground cloves

  • 3 cups cherry tomatoes, 14 ounces, or 1–14 ounce can chopped tomatoes

  • 1 can coconut milk

  • 1 Teaspoon sea salt, or to your taste

  • ¼ cup chopped fresh cilantro

  • 2 heads of Broccoli cut into flowerlets

  • One red pepper sliced

  1. Preheat a pan over medium heat. When the pan is hot, add 1 Tablespoon of the olive oil oil to the pan along with the cut up chicken thighs. Turn the heat to high and sauté until browned and mostly done, don’t worry if there’s a little pink in the chicken because it’s going to finish cooking later. Remove the chicken pieces from the pan, and set them aside.

  2. Lower the heat and add the diced onion. Sauté until the onion is browned, about 3-4 minutes. Add the minced garlic and the paprika, cayenne pepper, onion powder, ground ginger, cumin, coriander, cardamom, fenugreek, garlic powder, cinnamon, nutmeg, allspice and cloves and cook for about 2 minute or until the garlic is fragrant but not browned.

  3. Then add the tomatoes, and the coconut milk. Bring the mixture to a simmer. Then lower the heat to low, add the chicken back into the pan, and simmer for 14 minutes. Season to taste with sea salt

  4. add broccoli for 3 minutes, and add the red pepper for an additional 3 minutes. Season to taste and stir in the chopped cilantro.

Roasted Carrots

  • 1 pound carrots washed, peeled and cut if large

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • ¼ teaspoon Freshly cracked black pepper 

  • 2 tablespoons fennel seed

 

  1. Preheat oven to 425°F, Toss carrots with oil, salt, pepper and fennel on a baking sheet

  2. Bake 18-20 minutes or until tender when pierced with a fork.

 

Sauteed Ginger Broccoli

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 heads broccoli (about 2 pounds), florets separated, stalks trimmed, peeled, and thinly sliced

  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

  • 1 piece fresh ginger (1 inch long), peeled and slivered

  • 1 tablespoon of soy aminos

  • coarse salt and ground pepper

 

  1. Cook broccoli, uncovered in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 6 minutes, drain well in a colander. Rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Transfer to a bowl

  2. Cook garlic in oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat, stirring often, until garlic soft about 3 minutes, add the ginger and cook for another 2 minutes, pour onto the broccoli. 

  3. Add the aminos to the broccoli and salt and pepper to taste. 

May 4: Eggplant Chermoula with yogurt, Radish and Feta Salad, and Sauteed Broccoli

Eggplant Chermoula, with yogurt

  • 4 cloves garlic, crushed

  • 4 teaspoons ground cumin

  • 4 teaspoons ground coriander

  • 2 teaspoon chili flakes

  • 2 teaspoon sweet paprika

  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped lemon peel (available in stores)

  • 1⅓ cup olive oil, plus extra to finish

  • 2 medium eggplants

  • ⅓ ounce (2 teaspoons) cilantro, chopped, plus extra to finish

  • ⅓ ounce (2 teaspoons) mint, chopped

  • ⅓ cup pitted green olives, halved

  • ⅓ cup sliced almonds, toasted

  • 3 green onions, chopped

  • 1 ½ tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

  • ½ cup Greek yogurt 

  •  Salt

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Mix together in a small bowl the garlic, cumin, coriander, chili, paprika, lemon peel, two-thirds of the olive oil, and 1/2 teaspoon salt.

  3. Cut the eggplants in half lengthwise. Score the flesh of each half with deep, diagonal criss cross cuts, making sure not to pierce the skin. Spoon the chermoula over each half, spreading it evenly, and place the eggplant halves on a baking sheet, cut side up. Put in the oven and roast for 40 minutes, or until the eggplants are completely soft.

  4. With the remaining oil combine the herbs, olives, almonds, green onions, lemon juice and a pinch of salt and stir to combine. Taste and add more salt if necessary.

  5. Serve the eggplants warm or at room temperature. Place 1/2 eggplant, cut side up, on each individual plate. Spoon the herb mixture over the eggplant, allowing some to fall from both sides. Spoon over some yogurt, and finish with a drizzle of oil.

Radish and Feta Salad

  • 1 pound red radishes, cleaned and thinly sliced 

  • 1/2 pound feta cheese, 1/2-inch diced (not crumbled)

  • ⅓ ounce (2 teaspoons) parsley 

  • For the vinaigrette:
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

  • 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

  • 1/4 cup good red wine vinegar

  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt

  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

  • 1/2 cup good olive oil

 

  1. Place the radishes, cheese and parsley in a large bowl.

  2. In a separate small bowl whisk together the garlic, oregano, mustard, vinegar, salt and pepper. Still whisking, slowly add the olive oil to make an emulsion. Pour the vinaigrette over the radishes and toss. Set aside for 30 minutes to allow the flavors to blend. Serve at room temperature.

 

Sauteed Garlic Broccoli

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 2 heads broccoli (about 2 pounds), florets separated, stalks trimmed, peeled, and thinly sliced

  • 1 garlic clove, thinly sliced

  • 1 tablespoon of soy aminos

  • coarse salt and ground pepper

 

  1. Cook broccoli, uncovered in a 6- to 8-quart pot of boiling salted water until just tender, about 6 minutes, drain well in a colander. Rinse with cold water to stop cooking. Transfer to a bowl

  2. Cook garlic in oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat, stirring often, until garlic is soft, about 3 minutes, pour onto the broccoli. 

  3. Add the aminos to the broccoli and salt and pepper to taste. 

May 5: Breakfast for dinner, Scrambled eggs, Turnip Latkes, Cheddar Almond Flour Biscuit, Bacon and Sauteed Zucchini

Scrambled eggs

  • 2 large eggs

  • 1 tablespoon butter

 

  1. Place the butter in a medium sized non stick pan. 

  2. Add the eggs and using a whisk, mix the eggs until cooked

 

Turnip Latkes

  • 2 large eggs

  • ⅓ cup almond flour

  • ½ teaspoon baking powder

  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

  • 1¼ teaspoons kosher salt, divided

  • ½ medium-size yellow onion, shredded 

  • 3 medium turnip (about 8 oz.), peeled

  • ½ cup olive oil

  1. Whisk together eggs, flour, baking powder, pepper, and 1 teaspoon of the salt in a medium bowl.

  2. Grate turnips and onion, spread mixture on a clean towel, and roll up. Wring towel to squeeze out as much liquid as possible. 

  3. Stir turnip and onion mixture into egg mixture. 

  4. Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high. Place a ⅓ cup mixture into the oil, keeping space between the latkes. Using a spatula, flatten each latke to ⅓-inch thickness, and cook until golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Sprinkle with a pinch of remaining ¼ teaspoon salt after turning. Drain on paper towels, and repeat with remaining batter and salt.

Cheddar Almond Flour Biscuit

  • 2 large eggs

  • 2 tablespoons cottage cheese (sour cream can be substituted)

  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted

  • 1 cup almond flour

  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

  • 1/4 teaspoon pink himalayan or sea salt

  • 1 cup shredded cheddar cheese 

 

  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees and line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

  2. In a medium bowl, whisk together the eggs, cottage cheese, and butter. Set aside.

  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together the almond flour, baking powder, and salt. Add dry mixture to the wet ingredients and stir to combine. Stir in the cheddar cheese.

  4. Drop batter onto the prepared baking pan, about 3 tablespoons each.

  5. Bake for 12-14 minutes or until biscuits turn golden brown.


 

Sauteed Zucchini

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil

  • 4 medium sized zucchinis thinly sliced

  • 2 garlic clove, thinly sliced

  • 1 tablespoon of soy aminos

  • coarse salt and ground pepper

 

  1. Cook garlic in oil in a 12-inch skillet over moderate heat, stirring often, until garlic is soft, about 3 minutes add the zucchini slices and stir for another 6 minutes. 

  2. Add the aminos to the Zucchini and pour the mixture into a bowl. Salt and pepper to taste. 

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