If you are reading this, thinking it's the menu for the week of 11-9-09, you will be pleasantly surprised to know that I thought far enough ahead to realize you would probably kill me if I gave you a menu with so many steps and less than a day before the week started.... This is for NEXT week - so you have all week to slowly start to prepare the tamales...

What I didn't think about was what the rest of the menu for the week would be - so I think we will just focus on all the different types of tamales you can make with this:

Here is the basic recipe I use to make the masa.

Here is a recipe for fat-free masa.

Here is the recipe for the red chile sauce.

Here is the recipe for the salsa verde.

The types of tamales I am making this week are:

chicken (with red chile sauce)
chicken (with salsa verde)
chicken with no sauce
black bean and cheese (with salsa verde)
green chile and cheese (with red chile sauce)
corn and chile (with salsa verde)
jalapeno and cheese (with red chile sauce)
chicken and jalapenos (with salsa verde)

To assemble the tamales:

--you need dried corn husks--

Place dried corn husks in large pot. Add enough very hot water to cover. Let husks soak until soft and pliable, at least 2 hours and up to 1 day.

Remove 1 husk from water; remove any corn silk. place husk on work surface. Spread 6 tbs of masa dough over bottom third (wide end) of husk, covering completed. Spoon 3 Tbs chicken filling in strip down center of masa. Fold 1 long side of husk over filling, then continue to roll up, forming log that is open at both ends (some husk will end up between masa layers). Fold up narrow end of husk over filled end to seal. Tear narrow strip from another soaked corn husk. Slide strip of husk under folded end and tie tamale to secure (wide end will be open). If husk strip is too short, tear 2 narrow strips off another husk and tie ends together to form long strip. Repeat to make about 18 tamales.

Stand tamales, open end up, in steamer basked insert of large pot. Pour water into pot to come to bottom of basket. Cover pot; bring water to boil over medium-high heat. Steam tamales until dough is cooked through and separates easily from husk, adding more water to pot occasionally, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Let tamales rest in steamer 15 minutes.

Since there are really just two of you who read this - you can appreciate my joke above. (Yeah, you forgot to laugh until I told you to, didn't ya?) I'm doing something new and exciting this week - I'm going to post TWO weeks of menus. I know, crazy, right? Why, you ask?

Well, I'm very excited about making tamales, but I know how at least 50% of you feel about food that takes more than 2 steps. Unfortunately in order to get the deliciousness of tamales, you need to not only have multiple steps, but really be willing to set aside at least a few hours (not necessarily consecutively) to make them. So - I figure if both are posted this week you'll be able to decide when and how you want to make the tamales.

But first, the food for this week:


BBQ chicken
Steamed artichokes
Kluski Noodle Kugel


Chili (told you, you'd see some repeats -- Katie, get out that crock pot)


Hot dogs
Potato Chips
Onion dip (onion soup mix and sour cream (or yogurt) - mix together and devour)


California Roll Salad (a'la Katie)


Rotisserie Chicken

Did you have a nice Halloween? I hope so. I heard that if I dressed up as a burrito and went to Chipotle I could get a free burrito. That seemed like a pretty good deal - so I got my costume ready (put it in a bag) and drove over there. Once I arrived it seemed pretty empty for a place that we giving out free burritos. Thankfully I went in and asked before I showed up in my costume. The deal was only from 6pm - 10pm and I was there at noon.

No need to eat out this week - I have a bunch of delicious meals here!


Lettuce Wraps
Sweet & Sour Eggplant


Green Chicken Masala
Saag (with our without paneer, your choice)
Okra curry


Tuna salad and egg salad
** everyone has their own special take on tuna and egg salad. What's yours?**


Taco salad


BBQ chicken
mashed potatoes

I can't believe that even though Halloween is the next holiday, stores are already filled with Thanksgiving and even Christmas items. Well, that's not true. I can believe it because it always happens like this, but I still think it is important to give Halloween the respect it deserves. So, for this week's menu we are Halloween inspired.

Smashed liver

Monster Mash
French Fried Fingers


Cat whiskers

Chicken in dirt

Hello, hello.

Now that I'm healed from surgery, I seem to have managed to catch a cold. So once again, this weekend, I am laying in bed trying to get better. Ugh. In addition to that, Ethan is leaving town this week for a big conference, so there aren't too many days we'll (he'll) be cooking. But that doesn't mean that you shouldn't have a delicious menu to choose from.

This week I decided to (finally) follow up on Katie's request and create a menu with 5 or less steps. Some of these dinners are more true to the theme than others, but I chose them all with this idea in mind.








Hi again -

It's been a while since I've written, but to be honest, I haven't eaten much worth blogging about lately. Ethan was an incredible nurse, but my appetite seemed to be for things that only required a spoon to eat, so mostly while I was healing, I ate ice cream (gelato to be exact), mashed potatoes, apple sauce, and when I was feeling frisky, tater tots. Now that I'm back and cooking - I have to make up for some lost time. Enjoy the menu!


Monday -

Japanese Eggplant
Miso Soup
White Rice - try going to an Asian market to see if you can find Japanese sticky rice - it beats instant rice any day

Tuesday -

Veggie lasagna
Garlic bread - bread, butter, garlic salt -- or if you want, you can get the cheesy Texas toast at the store. It's pretty delicious
Salad - I have re-discovered Annie's Artichoke Parmesan salad dressing. (I first had it at my cousin Jodi's house and it's DELICIOUS)

Wednesday -

Corn Bread

Thursday -

BBQ Chicken
Baked sweet potatoes

Friday -

Eggplant Parmesan

We are getting ready for Rosh Hashana in the Pew house but we still have to eat on other days this week, right? Besides, since we aren't going to get to see you for the holiday (yes, you should be honored that I basically write this blog for 3 of you) you can see what delicious food you are missing (and make it on your own).

I also need to note that we are going to be eating a WHOLE lot of peaches this week because at the Farmer's market yesterday Ethan decided to buy 18 lbs. (that's not a typo) of peaches. "Millions of peaches, peaches for me..."

Pad Thai -- this is a new recipe I found. Do you have a tried and true recipe that you love? Please share it!

Okra curry -- (Ethan also bought okra at the farmer's market - and though I LOVE fried okra, I can't bring myself to make it at home)
Saag Paneer
Rice -- I would just buy boxed rice - either white or saffron
Puffy bread -- (I should look up what this is really called, but you buy it at the Indian store and it's frozen and then you put it on a griddle and it puffs up - similar to naan - but not quite. Tammy and Jason are you reading this? What's it called?)

Pumpkin soup*
Tomato salad with cheese

Burritos - if you need help making a burrito, e-mail me. :)

Whole trout with apple cider butter*
Asparagus (not just the plain asparagus, but a fun new twist)*


* Starred items will be making their Pew debut on Saturday night for RH dinner. :) And just because I think these dishes are delicious, I'll share with you the rest of our RH meal.
- Apples (duh!)
- Honey (we bought flavored honey, but were disappointed to find out that cherry honey, blackberry honey, and blueberry honey all taste just like honey)
- Penne Pasta
- Potato kugel with carrots
- Apple crumble
- Fuji Apple Spice Cake
- Round Challot