Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Mixed Plate: I'll Get You, Valentine... and Your Little Dog, Too!

It's just a quickie post for today, but I had to ask -- how was everyone's Valentine's Day? Broke-as-a -joke from paying $50 for roses that are now a quarter of the price? Stuffing your face with 60% off chocolates shaped like little hearts? Ahh.... l'amour!

Indy says: Won't you please be my Valentine...? I'm ever so pitiful-looking - Photo by Wasabi Prime

If you spent your February 14th in Western Washington, you're likely cleaning up the crud from the latest winter storm. Pouring rain one second, howling wind the next and LOOK OUT -- falling tree crashing into roads, homes and whatever else is foolish enough to get between that century-old Douglas Fir and terra firma. Stay frosty, Marines -- this week ain't over yet. Amid the flickering lights, I hastily cooked up a simple meal of lamb chops in a red wine sauce, served over a potato galette. Which is to say, meat n' potatoes. It was a noteworthy first as I've never really prepared lamb up until recently and these were the first chops I'd cooked. My thoughts on preparing lamb? Delicious. Searing in a hot pan for a few minutes and then letting the oven finish off the cooking -- with a meat thermometer probe inserted to prevent any over/under cooking, of course. This seems simple to so many others, but this was my first tussle with lamb chops, so I was especially glad they turned out tasty.

Hot damn, it's lamb! And I didn't ruin it, so Happy Valentine's Day to ME - Photos by Wasabi Prime

Proving yet again that taking photos of red meat is difficult to have it not look like a fresh kill, I instead ply the fair readers with the humiliation of our dog, Indy, who was good enough to pose for Mr. Wasabi's Valentine's Day card this year. I assure you that she was not harmed in any way and she was compensated for her time and emotional suffering with her favorite Peanutter doggie treat. I was also blessed with several Valentine cards from friends, most of them handmade, so as to make me feel even more of a slacker for not making any this year. Thanks, guys. But I will say the sweetest thing this Valentine's Day was feeling more at ease with cooking something new, and sometimes newfound confidence with unfamiliar ingredients and not destroying a special occasion dinner the best gift of all.

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