Monday, February 11, 2008

Weekend Eats and Ramblings (2/11/08)

It was a quiet weekend for the most part, just the way I like it. On Saturday, in an effort to use some of the Meyer lemons that are growing in the yard, I decided to try my hand on making a lemon meringue pie. The Mister loves lemon meringue pies so I figured, why not. Since we were having dinner that night with the Eating Machines, who also happen to love lemon meringue pies, I could see if it's good enough for them to eat. (But then that's like asking my dogs if they want a cookie.)

Anyway, I used the recipes in a very old cookbook I got long time ago. Three recipes in all, lemon pie crust, lemon pie, and meringue. Everything was pretty straight forward except the meringue had me a bit nervous. Too much sugar and the meringue would get crystals, not enough cream of tartar and the meringue would not be fluffy and tender. I've never had lemon meringue pie before and don't really know what a good meringue should be. Also, I don't like lemony foods, like lemon bars or lemon chicken (yes, another one of those food ticks). So I just followed the instructions exactly.

The result? The Mister said it was very good, tasted just like a good lemon meringue pie should taste. The Eating Machines also enjoyed it very much. As a matter of fact, we learned that the lemon filling that my MIL used to make was not homemade but from a box. MIL especially liked my filling, probably because of the Meyer lemon. The filling could have been a little thicker, so I think I'll cook it just a bit longer the next time.

So what did I think of my first LM pie? It is one of the most nastiest tasting pies I have ever had or made. Yup, it tasted so yucky to me that I wanted to eat some shoe polish to get the taste out of my mouth. I even tried it several times, thinking maybe I just needed to warm up to the taste. Nope, never did. But that's okay, as long as everyone else enjoyed the pie, that's alright with me!

So other things that I made on Sunday which I enjoyed eating, were NE clam chowder and chopped liver. Both were also first time making for me and both were delicious. I was very surprised at how well and simple the chowder was. I didn't actually follow a recipe for the chowder. Instead, I read many versions and pulled out what I wanted in my NE clam chowder. The Mister says he's not sure if he'll ever be able to eat canned chowder again.

As for the chopped liver, very simple, very good. But there are as many chopped liver recipes as there are NE clam chowder recipes. I just chose one that sounded good and went with it. Chopped liver is the Jewish foie gras. If you like liver or pate, you will probably like chopped liver. I had to cook the chicken liver in Canola oil since I didn't have any schmaltz (rendered animal fat), which is acceptable. When made right, it has a slight sweet flavor to it, possibly from the cooked onions. I think I was pretty darn close. We loved it. It's a keeper. Had it with some crusty sourdough bread and some chowder. What could be better. The Mister said he doesn't think he can go back to Liverwurst again.

I would have posted the recipes here but didn't bring my notes with me. If you want either of these, let me know.

Have a wonderful week. Now go and eat well.

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