Monday, July 26, 2021

July 26, 2021 Lunch - Chicken Salad Salad, Dinner - Roasted Chicken thighs, potatoes, garlic, and onions with steamed asparagus

July 26, 2021 Lunch - Chicken Salad Salad, Dinner - Roasted Chicken thighs, potatoes, garlic, and onions with steamed asparagus


I had a colonoscopy at 9:00 this morning. It went well and the doctor informed me this would be my last one.


When I returned home I ate a light meal of yogurt, granola, blueberries, milk, and banana slices.


Then I watched TV and tried to relax to let the drug used to put me to sleep wear off.  Actually Karim came by around 1:30 and we worked on his project until 3:00, by which time I was hungry.  I made a simple salad of iceberg lettuce, chicken salad, a sliced radish, a green onion, and a tomato and refreshed the Cesar dressing with juice of a lemon and some olive oil before drizzling it onto the salad.




After lunch I checked my portfolio and found that I suffered a minimal loss on a rather lackluster day on which one stock caused the loss, JD. It, like the big a Chinese companies’ stocks, tumbled as the Chinese government continues to put restrictions on Chinese companies.


Suzette came home at 5:00 and we decided rather quickly to cook a very simple meal.  We combined three diced potatoes, a diced onion, about 9 cloves of garlic with their skin left on, liberally drizzled with olive oil and four chicken pan thighs in a ceramic baking dish and covered it with aluminum foil and roasted it for 1:15 minutes covered at 350 degrees and about 15 minutes uncovered to brown the chicken.






I opened a bottle of La Granja Viura/Verdejo blend ($5.99 at Trader Joe’s) that went rather well with the chicken and Suzette steamed the last six stalks of asparagus in the microwave covered in a pyrex baking dish with a bit of water.






The thing that was remarkable about dinner was how easy it was to prepare.  The prep took no more than 5 minutes of our combined effort and we sipped wine and watched the news while dinner roasted in the oven.


Bon Appetit

Sunday, July 25, 2021

July 24, 2021 Brunch - BLT Sandwich with dill pickles, Lunch - PPI Poke Shish Kabob and rice. Dinner at Debbie and Jeff’s

 July 24, 2021 Brunch - BLT Sandwich with dill pickles, Lunch - PPI Poke Shish Kabob and rice. Dinner at Debbie and Jeff’s 


I ate a fig bar and then we walked to the Farmers’ Market.  We discussed how to trim the fig tree and how to protect during the winter with Lloyd, the fig man.  I bought a pineapple and cherry empanada and ate the pineapple.  We also bought yellow and red slicing tomatoes and a basketful of black eye peas for a pea salad.  When we returned home we went to the garden and trimmed the fig bush.  


Then Suzette made us each a BLT sandwich with the lovely fresh Wholewheat bread baked by the new baker at the Greenhouse Bistro.




Then I lay down until 3:00 when I ate the leftover rice and seafood Poke shish kabob left from last night’s dinner.


We packed a bottle of 2009 Chateau Nerthe Chateauneuf de Pape, four duck breasts, flowers, asparaguses, and clafoutis.  At 5:00 we left to go to Total Wine.  We had a coupon for 25% off on winery direct wines and 15% off of spirits.  We restocked our cellar with about 40 bottles of French and Italian wine plus about five or six bottles of spirits.


We then drove to Debbie and Jeff’s at the top of Glenwood Hills.


We had drinks and watched the scenery for a while and Marty joined us.  Then we started the grill and Jeff grilled two steaks and Suzette grilled three duck breasts While Debbie made a salad, potatoes, and corn.


Suzette opened the Chateau Nerthe and we served ourselves dinner.


Everything was lovely. What I particularly liked was the juxtaposition of the grilled duck with the Wine.  I am used to duck being served with a sauce, but I appreciated this California Cuisine approach of a simple grilled piece of duck accompanied by an elegant wine.


We watched the sunset and then ate some clafoutis and then enjoyed the night air and the lights of Albuquerque from high on the mountain.


Finally at 10:30 we drove home after a lovely evening of food and conversation. 


Bon Appetit 


Friday, July 23, 2021

July 23, 2021 Lunch - East Ocean Dinner - Poke Shish kabobs with Fried Tofu and Mixed Vegetables and Szechuan Clams and Rice

July 23, 2021 Lunch - East Ocean Dinner - Poke Shish kabobs with Fried Tofu and Mixed Vegetables and Szechuan Clams and Rice


Aaron and I ate toasted slices of bagel smeared with cream cheese and garnished with slices of red onion and Gravad lax and capers and then we went to court for a hearing, except the court was not open and we did it telephonically.


Then we returned to the house and aaron tried to fix the email problem n my computer to no avail.


We then went to East Ocean to eat lunch.  We had been many times before and Aaron loves the deep fried tofu with mixed Vegetables, so we ordered those.  


I asked Aaron whether he liked clams or duck better.  He chose Manila clams, so we ordered those with a Szechuan sauce.  As it turned out the Szechuan sauce was really spicy today and it almost ruined the joy of eating the clams, but nothing really can ruin the joy of eating freshly steamed clams.


After a lengthy lunch with lots of chatting we said goodbye at 12:30.


When I checked the Market in the morning it was up, being powered by big tech names like Apple, Facebook, Moderna, and Square.  When I returned home I worked for a while and then checked after the Market closed at 2:00 and was amazed that the market had a strong close for a Friday with the early strength of the morning lasting and accelerating to the Close.  My portfolio ended the day with another stellar gain of 1.25%.  In fact the last four days have all been great with the portfolio notching a total gain of 4.78% or said another way, almost 1/2 of my expected gain for 2021 in four days.


I will need to revise my expected annual gain because my portfolio has already increased 18%. 


I took the leftover food home from East Ocean so when zsuzette arrived at 5:30, we had a dilemma.  We had the fresh salmon, tuna, and scallops plus the fried tofu and mixed vegetables and five or six clams plus rice.


Poke


I did not eat the salmon, scallops, and tuna I had bought for sushi and we had all the leftovers from lunch.  I was at a loss as to a menu utilizing those ingredients, but Suzette came up with a creative solution, Poke Shish Kabob served with the Fried Tofu and Mixed Vegetables and rice.


I copied a recipe from the internet for the poke while Suzette cubed the tuna.  The salmon was already cubed. Here is the recipe I used: 


Tuna Poke Bowls

METRIC


CUP MEASURES

By Jennifer Segal

Tuna poke is a traditional Hawaiian salad of raw tuna marinated in soy sauce, sesame oil, and onions. Here it’s served over sushi rice with your favorite toppings.

Servings: 4 to 6

Prep Time: 20 Minutes


Total Time: 20 Minutes, plus at least 15 minutes to marinate

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/4 cup + 2 tablespoons soy sauce (use gluten-free if necessary)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon Sambal Oelek (see note)
  • 2 teaspoons fresh grated ginger
  • 3 scallions, white and green parts, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound sushi-grade ahi tuna (such as yellowfin or big-eye tuna), diced into 1/4 or 1/2-inch pieces
  • 2 cups sushi rice, cooked according to package instructions (any other type of rice or grain can be substituted)


I mixed the ingredients and marinated the cubes salmon, tuna, and scallops for about 45 minutes. We left out the sambal Oelek because we added the spicy clam sauce to the rice, tofu, and mixed vegetables. We also substituted the PPI chives slices for two of the green onions.


Suzette skewered most of the poke onto three skewers and grilled and marinated the skewers on the propane grill outside until the fish was cooked to just beyond seared. 


She placed the remaining poke in a small bowl for me to eat.


The Rice and Tofu and Mixed Vegetables and spicy clams


Suzette emptied and mixed the two boxes of leftovers into a 6 x 9 inch pyrex baking dish on which I drizzled soy sauce to flavor the vegetables and rice.  I then went to the garden and picked about 12 leaves each of two kinds of kale that I de-stemmed and cut into bite sized pieces and lay on top of the tofu, vegetables and rice.  covered the baking dish with Saran and put it into the microwave to re-heat on a setting of sensor re-heat.


Soon Suzette brought in the grilled skewers of poke and plated two plates with a pile of the re-heated tofu, vegetables, kale, clams m and riceand lay the shish kabob fish on top of the pile.


I went fetched two Negra Modelos from the garage and we ate a lovely creative meal that I finished with the raw poke.


Later we watched the Opening Ceremony of the Tokyo Olympics and I ate a bowl of chocolate ice cream.


Suzette went to bed at 10:00 after the Olympic ceremony and I stayed up to blog.


Bon Appetit 


July 22, 2021 Lunch - Ratatouille on Artichoke Provençale Couscous Dinner - Salmon, Scallop, Kale, and Egg White Noodle Stir Fry

July 22, 2021 Lunch - Ratatouille on Artichoke Provençale Couscous  Dinner - Salmon, Scallop, Kale, and Egg White Noodle Stir Fry


This was a busy day.  I finally did legal work for over four hours.


I walked 1/3 mile with some difficulty at 8:00. When I returned I prepared my go to breakfast to jump start my energy, two eggs over easy, a smoked pork chop, and two pieces of Whole wheat toast spread with orange marmalade.  Sugar, protein, and carbs



After 2:00 I checked my portfolio and it reached a new high again today. Since January my portfolio has increased by 16.66%.  It looks like if the economy keeps reopening my portfolio will increase by 20 to 25% this year. Not quite as good as last year’s 32.5%, but a lot better than my expected normal 10%.


I finally got hungry at 3:00 and heated a plate of the Artichoke Provençale Couscous with chicken covered by several spoonfuls of Ratatouille.  I really enjoyed lunch, especially with the last 3 oz. of. Tavel. I had a Cote du Rhone/Southern France moment.




Then back to work to resolve a conflict between two hearings set for the same time.


By 5:00 I had resolved the conflict and drove to Walgreens to buy the meds for the colonoscopy prep on Sunday.


I was so busy and tired I forgot to meditate.  


I lay down when I returned home and was awakened by Suzette at 6:30. 


She initially said I was failing to fix dinner, but when we went over the dinner choices and finally decided on a salmon and scallops stir fr6 with two types of fresh kale from the garden, she realized I like to plan and cook the meal with her.


The wine


We have fallen love with the new 2020 French Claire Patelin Cotes de Gascogne Sauvignon Blanc that Trader Joe’s is selling for $5.49.  Suzette went yesterday and bought the last 11 bottles of it and chilled a bottle, so tonight we drank Sauvignon Blanc with dinner.  It is slightly sweet and has a smooth fruity finish that we both find appealing.




The Salmon and Scallop and Kale stir Fry


The Prep - I sliced the last 1 oz. of red onion, two large scallions, five asparagus stalks, 1 oz. of ginger root, and three small cloves of garlic and cleaned the last of the white beech mushrooms and cubed 1/4 lb. of fresh salmon and five scallops. Suzette wanted a Japanese style dish without any soy, so I fetched Aji Mirin, Chinese rice cooking wine, sesame oil, and fish sauce.  Suzette went to the garden and picked a basket of two types of kale and de-stemmed the leaves and roughly chopped the kale.




The Stir Fry- We then stir fried the asparagus, onion, ginger, and garlic in 1 1/2 T. of peanut oil and 1 tsp. of sesame oil in my wok.  After about three or four minutes when the vegetables began to soften we added the salmon, scallops and mushrooms. While the vegetables were cooking we soaked a bundle of egg white noodles for 1 minute in boiling water and then added them to the wok.


After another couple of minutes I added about 1 T. of each of Chinese Cooking Wine and Aji Mirin and 1 1/2 tsp. of fish sauce and then the kale and we covered the wok with its lid to steam the kale.


                 The stir Fry before we added the liquids, noodles, and kale


We then turned off the heat and divided the stir Fry onto two plates. It was amazingly delicious and the wine complemented the dish like a good Sauvignon Blanc does lightly sautéed fish.




We watched Rachel and then Midsomer Mystery with a little cognac to complete a normal Thursday night.


Bon Appetit 


Thursday, July 22, 2021

July 21, 2021 Lunch - chicken Salad salad Dinner - Grilled Rib Steak and Asparagus with a baked potato

July 21, 2021 Lunch - chicken Salad salad  Dinner - Grilled Rib Steak and Asparagus with a baked potato

Days like this make me very happy.  I spent the morning and part of the afternoon doing legal work as my Portfolio marched to a new high. It started out slowly and then by the afternoon every stock except Apple seemed to go higher, ratcheting a 1.46% gain.

 

I awakened at 6:45 and received a call from a client at 7:15. I then ate my usual bowl 

of granola, yogurt, milk, and blueberries and 1/2 of a sliced banana.


I worked on a case until 10:00 when I rode to the Nature Center and back.  It took over and hour and I was tired when I returned, so I rested until Suzette made us lunch at 11:30.  She made a simple salad like yesterday’s of a bed of Romaine  lettuce with some diced tomato and a scoop of chicken salad, except today she laid the chicken salad in a peeled and seeded avocado half, which made for a much more elegant and creamy salad.


I drizzled a bit of olive oil and Moderna white vinegar on my salad for a light dressing.



We ate outside in the garden.  It was a cool day with a slight breeze, so very relaxing.  


After lunch I took one of the big 2 1/2 lb. rib steaks we had hand cut with zsuzette’s power saw out of the freezer to thaw and then rested and then enjoyed watching the Market power to a new high for me until 2:00.  I  then filed my first monthly gross receipt tax return using the State’s new on line system.  It proved to be surprisingly easy, so I guess I am acculturated to manipulating forms on the Internet, although I did study the tutorial.


Then I received a call from a client regarding a purchase of real estate that required a revised purchase agreement that took me until after 4:00 to complete.


At 4:30 I put 4 russet potatoes into the oven to bake at 375 degrees for one hour.    


A bit after 5:00 Suzette came home from running errands all afternoon.  She was hot and took a shower and relaxed for a few minutes and then we started preparing dinner.  


Grilled steak and Asparagus 


I had bought a 2.25 lb. bag of lovely medium sized asparagus at Costco yesterday for $4.99.


Suzette snapped the tough ends off about 14 asparagus stalks and then tossed the asparagus in a 1 gallon freezer bag with salt, pepper and olive oil.  The steak was still quite frozen so Suzette defrosted the steak in the microwave and seasoned it with salt and pepper.


She then heated the grill and when she put the steak and asparaguses on the grill I went to the garden and harvested about a dozen chives and sliced then thinly and put the slices in a shallow bowl and fetched the new container of crema natural (sour cream) I bought at El Super. 


As you can see this is a meal we prepare so often that we can prepare it on auto-pilot.  


Although this meal was different because we made a new sauce to serve with the steak triggered by Suzette saying the magic word, “I think horseradish might be good with the steak.”


I call the sauce Delice Sauce. It is a sauce I used to make in Texas to serve when we would grill a whole tenderloin.  It is easy to make, simply whip some heavy cream and add horseradish and salt to taste.  Suzette whipped it up in a minute or two as I was slicing the steak.



                   The sour cream, Delice Sauce, chives, and wine carafe


The wine


The only issue to be decided was the wine.  We decided to drink a good wine and then when I saw the new bottle of 2018 Calstar Cellars Petit Meunier red we decided to try it.  Neither of us had ever drunk a bottle of Petit Meunier red, so this was new territory for us.


I opened the bottle while the steak and asparaguses were grilling and we tried it. It had a slightly harsh flavor, but Suzette said, “It needs to open. Let’s pour it into a carafe.” 


She was correct because in just a few minutes after she poured the wine into a ceramic carafe its bitterness disappeared and it became a delightfully fruity bright berry flavored light red wine.  We loved it and drank the entire bottle, so it met the excellent bottle test.  In fact I will buy more bottles of Petit Meunier and thank Rick of Calstar for making it and suggesting I try it.



P

Perhaps part of the enjoyment of the wine was due to the fact that Suzette cooked the steak and asparaguses perfectly.  The asparagus were tender but not too tough or too limp and the steak was cooked from medium well one one end to rare in the middle depending on which part of it one ate. There was lots of steak left so I am thinking about making French onion soup.  Also I saw the leeks I bought at El Super in the fridge outside, so I think I will make Vichyssoises.


As we ate we watched the President’s Town Hall with Don Lemon until we were tired of him telling people to get vaccinated and turned the TV to Rachel Maddow. We each ate a bowl of chocolate ice cream with a glass of cognac to celebrate a successful meal and then we went to bed before 9:00.  Suzette made a more elaborate sundae with freshly whipped cream, 1/2 of a banana sliced, and several of her homemade maraschino cherries.


I woke up around 12:30 and blogged this blog as I often do after a big meal of steak.


Then I pitted several cherries and put them in the maraschino Cherry liquid to refresh the maraschino cherries.





Bon Appetit






Tuesday, July 20, 2021

July 20, 2021 Lunch - Chicken Salad Salad. Dinner - PPI Seared Salmon with Bean Salad

 July 20, 2021 Lunch - Chicken Salad Salad. Dinner - PPI Seared Salmon with Bean Salad 


I am sleeping more these days. I woke up at 7:30.  It was a bright new day in the market with gains everywhere there had only been losses for the last four days.  What was interesting was that the two stocks that did really well yesterday, Nvidia and Moderna went down in the face of a surge of the DOW 550 points and 220 in the NASDAQ.  Even so my portfolio regained half of it entire loss from the last four days, rising 1.37%.


I ate granola, milk, yogurt, blueberries, and banana slices for breakfast and then walked a mile.  


I watched the Blue Horizon launch and after press conference and cried when Jeff Bezos announced the Courage and Civility Awards announced the first two recipients, Van Jones and Jose Andres.  What a wonderful thing to do, to give money to persons who will use it for good.


At noon I drove to Costco and bought eggs, olive oil, goat cheese, asparagus, praline pecans, granola, and a bottle of Gruet Rose Sauvage.


I then drove home and made a salad with romaine lettuce, chicken salad, and a tomato with a drizzle of olive oil and Moderna white vinegar.




After checking my portfolio’s performance I called Willy to invite him for dinner, worked for an hour, and then napped until Suzette arrived at 5:00.


I chilled the new bottle of French Sauvignon Blanc and we made gin and tonics and watched the news.


We did not need to cook because we had the lovely leftovers from Sunday’s meal with Nancy and Cliff and Wayne and Elaine; seared salmon and a two bean and Elaine’s amazing pea salad; combining sugar snap peas, baby Lima beans, micro greens, blue cheese, baby arugula, and strawberries.


We served the salmon on a pile of PPI couscous and Artichokes Provençale that I made last night.




The real surprise was the wine.  I had bought a new bottle at Trader Joe’s from Cotes de Gascogne, a 2020 Claire Patelin Sauvignon Blanc that proved surprisingly good.  The way I know it was really good was we all kept drinking glasses of it until it was fully consumed.




After dinner Willy left and we ate the last of Sunday’s dessert, a creamy gelatin served with lots of fresh berries.


It was a lovely meal of leftovers and an impressive wine discovery.


I guess today’s big news besides Bezos’ flight into space and the creation of the $100,000,000 Courage and Civility awards was that Trump’s Inaugural chairman, Barrack, was indicted by the DOJ for not registering as a foreign agent and lying to the FBI about it.  I guess the Trump confidants disregard for the law is catching up to those that Trump did not


Bon Appetit 

Monday, July 19, 2021

July 19, 2021 Lunch - No. 30 from 2000 Vietnamese Restaurant. Dinner - Artichokes Provencal with Chicken and Couscous

July 19, 2021 Lunch - No. 30 from 2000 Vietnamese Restaurant. Dinner - Artichokes Provencal with Chicken and Couscous 

I woke up at 7:30 as Suzette was leaving for work.


The Market was plunging so at 8:20 I walked 3/4 mile on 1 sugar pill.


I became tired toward the end of the walk so when I returned I ate a bowl of granola with milk, yogurt, banana, and blueberries.




I rested until 10:00 and then showered and dressed and drove to my first private yoga session that Luke gave me for my birthday.


I really liked the session and how helpful Avery was in getting into the positions and intensifying the stretch. I felt better after the session as I drove to the bank, and then picked up a No. 30 at 2000 Vietnamese Restaurant.  They know my taste because they added two extra containers of fish sauce.  


I then drove to Sprouts where I bought tuna, salmon, and scallops for sushi plus milk and yogurt.


Then I stopped at Lowe’s on the way home and bought tonic water and club soda.


When I returned home and unpacked groceries, I ate a wonderful No. 30 with extra basil and cilantro.  




After lunch I revised a contract and then lay down for a nap.  I must have been tired because I slept until Suzette arrived at 6:15.


Suzette did not want to cook, but suggested I cook the artichoke Provencal dish.


I checked the recipe.  It is simple.  Here it is.


  1. Cook 1/2 chopped onion, 2 chopped garlic cloves and a pinch of salt in a skillet with 1 tablespoon olive oil, 5 minutes. Pour in 1/2 cup white wine and reduce by half. Add 2 chopped tomatoes, two 9-ounce packages frozen artichoke hearts, 3 tablespoons water, 1 strip lemon zest and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Cook, covered, 6 minutes. Stir in chopped olives, basil and salt and pepper.

I diced 1/2 onion, 3 small cloves of garlic, 1 1/2 carrots, 1/4 golden zucchini, 1/2 of a chicken breast that I sautéed for about 10 minutes in 2 T. of olive oil and cvered the skillet to steam and cook the ingredients.  Then I added 1 can of artichoke hearts cut in half, 2 tomatoes diced, and about 12 Kalamata olives cut in half and 1 tsp. of salt. 




In another sauce pan I melted 2 T. of butter and added 3/4 cup of couscous and sautéed the couscous for several minutes and added about 1 1/4 cup of hot water and reduced the heat and covered the pan.


In about five minutes the couscous was cooked so we served ourselves bowls of couscous and the artichoke dish.  






It was delicious and there was enough left of both dishes to achieve what I had suggested for the meal Sunday; to serve the couscous and artichokes Provençal with the PPI salmon from last night’s dinner, which we will eat tomorrow night.


After dinner and after Suzette went to bed at 9:00, I made 


Chicken Salad.


I chopped finely celery, 1 chicken breast, 1/2 red onion, an apple, and 4 hard boiled eggs and added them.  I added about 1 1/2 cup of Mayo, about. 1 T. of Moderna white vinegar, and 1 T. of Dijon mustard.




I ate some clafoutis with a cup of chai and then refrigerated the chicken salad and clafoutis and wrote this blog.


Let me repeat that Elaine’s salad and Nancy’s grilled salmon were as good as any I have ever eaten.  Elaine’s salad featured baby Lima beans and sugar snap peas with strawberries, blue cheese, baby arugula, and micro greens.  Wonderfully delicious and as good or better than the bean salad I ate at Blue Hill in NYC 20 years ago.


Nancy’s grilled salmon was equally memorable.  It equaled or exceeded the freshness and tenderness because she bought it at Whole Foods and grilled it to just beyond seared.  The center was hot and just beyond gelatinous, where the flakes flaked but contained all their internal natural oils.


This salmon matched the best I have ever tasted in Philo, CA.  We were visiting Philo and Booneville for the Annual Pinot festival in May several years ago.  The grocery store in Philo owns its own fishing trawler that goes out at night and fishes for salmon that it brings back to Mendocino and is then trucked the twenty miles to Philo.  We bought the salmon fillet in the morning and seared it for dinner in a manner similar to the way Nancy grilled it, so that the flakes fell apart when touched by a fork and expressed the full flavor of the salmon.  I liked it better than raw salmon.


Bon Appetit