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3-Day Weekend (Part II – The Food)

My good friend, Rebecca, gave me a subscription to Gourmet Magazine for my birthday last year. It has some really great recipes for Epicurean indulgences and during months when I haven’t been utterly swamped in every aspect of my life, I’ve tried more than a few of them. This month, I got my copy of the latest issue during a lull in the usual chaos last week. I discovered three recipes that I tried out last weekend to varying degrees of success.

This first one I took to my parents’ house for the burgers and veggies at their Memorial Day Barbecue. It was very popular (although I thought it could have had a stronger cheese flavor for my taste).

Blue Cheese Dressing


1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup well-shaken buttermilk
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons sour cream
2 tablespoons red-wine vinegar
2 and 1/2 teaspoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon minced garlic
1/8 teaspoon black pepper
5 oz. blue cheese, crumbled


Whisk together all the ingredients except cheese. Fold cheese in and chill covered for 8 hours to two days (I only let it chill for exactly 8 hours, so next time I will chill for longer to release more of the flavor).

This next one I made for our dinner Sunday night. Jason loves all things pork, but is not a big fan of anything fishy, so I think this one was a toss-up for him (although he swears it was good). I liked it a lot while I was eating it, but the taste of the fish oil really took root in my mouth and by bedtime I had to brush my teeth twice to defish it.

Vietnamese Caramelized Grilled Pork with Rice Noodle Salad

3 pork chops
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
1 tablespoon lime juice
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
1/2 teaspoon salt
Japanese Udon noodles (recipe calls for thin rice noodles, but we couldn’t find them and used these instead)
1/4 cup rice vinegar
1 tablespoon sugar
1 tablespoon Asian fish sauce
1 carrot, julienned
2 scallions, sliced
1 cup chopped cilantro
1/4 cup unsalted dry-roasted peanuts, chopped


Pound pork chops until 1/4 inch thick. Heat 1/3 cup sugar in a sauce pan over medium heat until melted. Add shallots, lime juice, fish sauce and salt to the sugar and stir (sugar will harden). Toss sugar mixture and pork chops together in a bowl. Grill pork chops (I used our George Foreman grill) a couple of minutes on each side until pork chops are not pink in the middle. Boil Udon noodles until cooked and then drain. Whisk together vinegar, sugar and fish sauce until sugar is dissolved. Toss noodles, sauce, carrots, scallions, cilantro and peanuts together and separate onto three plates. slice pork chops over the top.

The last recipe I made for breakfast Monday morning. It was a hit with all!

Cottage Cheese Pancakes


1 cup cottage cheese
4 large eggs
1/2 cup flour
3/4 stick (6 tablespoons) unsalted butter
Vegetable oil
Salted butter
Maple syrup


Put cottage cheese, eggs, flour and unsalted butter (melted) in the food processor and pulse a couple of times until just mixed (batter should be lumpy). Heat skillet or griddle to medium high and brush with vegetable oil. Pour 1/4 cup of mixture on the griddle and turn after a couple of minutes. Top with butter and maple syrup.

(Diet coke and bacon are optional, but I highly recommend them as accompaniments.)

See, even Gray loved them!

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