Monday, July 18 –
Well, this dinner was pretty much a fail. And I have to say, holy butter smotheredness! I started with the veggies and feta (more about the feta later) and realized once I was partly into the recipe that it called for an entire stick of butter. Against my better judgement, I made it the way the recipe said. Oops! Next time I’ll adjust things that look a little too ridiculous. But I made it, and as you’ll see in the photo below, it was swimming in grease. The chicken was pretty good, but the walnuts made more of a coating than a sauce, and the flavor was a little bland. That recipe ALSO called for an entire stick of butter, but realizing my mistake with the first one I opted out of the second half of the stick in this recipe (thank goodness!). I served these dishes with a simple green salad to try to perk up the plate and cut down on the grease. My wonderful boyfriend said the chicken was “ok-ish” and the veggies and feta was like “someone scooped off the top of a greasy pizza” and put it on his plate.
Now if I could eat cheese on a regular basis, I probably would have kept the veggie dish and used it on rolls as a mock-pizza for lunches at work. I can’t, though, so we ended up throwing it away. That’s the fail. I HATE throwing food away. I did make it through eating a little bit of feta, which I would put under “the lesser evil” category; not as bad as cheese from a cow, but still noticeable to my crohn’s in the morning. At least I know I can sprinkle dishes with a little bit of it and still be ok (which will be wonderful once I get to Greece).
Next week will hopefully be something completely different: Algeria!
(recipes borrowed from the cooks at: www.albaniantranslators.com/recipes.html)
Chicken or Veal with Walnuts (Albanian Name: Gjellë me Arra)
- 2 tablespoons flour
- 15 finely crushed shelled walnuts
- 2 beaten egg yokes
- 1 minced garlic clove
- 1/4 lb. sticks butter
- 2-3 lbs of Veal or Chicken meat cut up in 1″ cubes
Cooking Instructions: Place the meat or chicken in a saucepan and cook over medium heat until tender. Then remove the meat setting it aside in a dish while leaving the remaining juices in the saucepan. In another saucepan, add the flour and sauté over heat until it becomes light brown in color (do not overcook!) and add the half a stick of butter. Then, add the finely crushed walnuts, minced garlic clove, and the two egg yokes, stirring constantly. Add the juices from the other saucepan and sauté until all the ingredients thicken. Immediately remove from the heat to avoid solidifying the egg yolks. Then fold in either the meat or chicken. Pan fry the remaining half stick of butter until brown and pour over the four servings. Enjoy it. Servings: 4
Tirana Furghes with Peppers (Albanian Name: Fergesë e Tiranës me speca)
- Green or Red Peppers, half- pound
- Red Tomatoes, one pound
- Salted Cottage Cheese or Greek Feta Cheese, half-pound
- Flour, one tablespoon
- Butter, one quarter-pound stick
- Virgin Olive Oil, 3 tablespoons
- Add Salt, Black Pepper, and Chili Pepper to your taste
Cooking Instructions: Peel the skin off the tomatoes and peppers. Sauté them in a saucepan for 5-7 minutes only in the olive oil and then set them aside to cool down for 15 minutes. Dice them the way you like. In another saucepan, melt the butter. Add flour, cottage or Feta cheese, and black pepper, salt and chili pepper to taste. Mix all the ingredients together and place them in saucepan. Put saucepan in a preheated 350 oven for 15 minutes. Take out and serve immediately.