Dicken’s Christmas – Roast Goose with Chestnut Stuffing

Dickens’ Christmas Dinner Menu Christmas Salad Roast Goose with Sour Cherry Sauce Chestnut Stuffing Wild Rice Haricots Verts Christmas Pudding I lucked out this year and got a free range goose! I was so happy when I found it that I was jumping up and down. It was going to be a Dickens’ Christmas after all! There never was such a goose. Bob said he didn’t believe there ever was such a goose cooked. Its tenderness and flavour, size and cheapness1, were the themes of universal admiration…. In half a minute Mrs Cratchit entered — flushed, but smiling proudly — with the pudding, like a speckled cannon-ball, so hard and firm, blazing in half of half-a-quartern of ignited brandy, and bedight with Christmas holly stuck into the top. `A Merry Christmas to us all, my dears. God bless us.’ Which all the family re-echoed. `God bless us every one.’ said … Continue reading

New School Hamburger Gravy

When I was in grammar school at Cheremoya Avenue Elementary School in Hollywood, California, about once every two weeks we had Hamburger Gravy and Mashed Potatoes.  I really loved that dish, it was my favorite.  All the other stuff was pretty bland, and actually kind of nasty, especially the paper thin cheeseburgers.  For years and years, I have been trying to replicate the special taste of that gravy, and have been pretty much successful. Years ago, when I first met Chef John Farion, he treated some friends and I to dinner at another chef’s restaurant on Melrose .  I ordered the filet mignon with blue cheese sauce.  It was truly fantastic, and I have been pairing blue cheese with beef ever since.  I guess I’m not the only one, even Carl’s Jr. now has a steakhouse burger featuring blue cheese. I get my blue cheese at the Armenian stores, for … Continue reading

Hot Tin Roof Salad – Composed Grilled Steak Salad

This is a great salad to make on a hot summer day. You don’t even have to get your kitchen hot – just grill the steak and vegetables on the grill. Enjoy the salad with a nice glass of red wine. Continue reading

Blue Cheese Burgers

When I was a little girl, my mother would make blue cheese dressing, and she would give me a little piece of cheese. It was never enough. When I grew up, and I looked at the price of blue cheese, I could see why. Then, I moved to Glendale, where blue cheese is sold off the wheel, and is a lot less expensive. Finally, I can have as much blue cheese as I want! When I first met my friend Chef John Farion, he took his ex-wife, his sister Katherine, and me to a nice restaurant on Melrose. His friend was chef there, and I had a lovely steak with blue cheese sauce. It was heavenly, and I have adapted it to my own kitchen. I’ll be posting it next time I make it. So, last night, I really wanted to come up with that same taste when I was … Continue reading

Suddenly Composed Salad

Suddenly Composed! Every year in Southern California, specifically in Los Angeles, we have something called June Gloom. It happens right after Memorial Day, which is usually hot, when the marine layer sits over the Pacific Ocean coming inland and keeps everything cool and gloomy. My mother used to call this kind of weather “sweater weather” because it wasn’t cold enough for a coat, but it would get warm enough after the clouds burned off to go in a sun dress, and wear a cardigan in between. It is also the time when fruits and vegetables are springing up very fresh and flavorful in your local market. Just a few days ago, I was lucky enough to get green tomatoes to make Fried Green Tomatoes with Basil Garlic Mayonnaise. Today my corner store had ripe, red, tomatoes that cried out to be brought home for salad. There were also perky Persian … Continue reading