Friday, December 31, 2010

Cafe World Challenge Week 41

I'm back in the kitchen. Did I ever leave? No not really, I just took off a week posting while travelling around visiting family over Christmas. Since I have two weeks worth of dishes to report on, this post will be longer than usual. I finished up four more dishes to cross off the list, although one is a new addition.


The Cafe World version has a pita stuffed with Falafel and Dolmas. I have previously made Falafel for the challenge, so I made Tabbouleh instead. It is a fantastic salad made from Bulgar wheat, tomatoes, green onions, parsley and mint with an olive oil and lemon juice dressing. I make it pretty regularly and just estimate quantities and taste. I found a recipe on which is pretty much exactly how I make mine. So check it out there, it would save me typing it all out.

I've never made dolmas/dolmadas/stuffed grape leaves/stuffed vine leaves...whatever you call them. I've always enjoyed them though and had fun making them. I was in the middle of a biscotti baking marathon for a cookie tray fundraiser, so I chose a crockpot recipe to keep pots off my stove and out of the way of the baking. They turned out great. I made this recipe on the Blog "A Year of Slow Cooking" . This blog is a great resource for crockpot recipes and tips. The year involved was 2008, but the blog is still kept current with new recipes and crockpot related posts. These dolmas are stuffed with a rice and ground lamb and turkey (I used chicken) mixture. Once you get the hang of it, the stuffing and rolling of the leaves is quite easy and fast. I still have a big jar of leaves left so I'll probably make these again.


I used a Betty Crocker recipe, it was simple enough except for the whole deep frying in batches thing which takes forever if you don't have a great big pot or deep fryer. It is fried in a seasoned flour and then tossed in a hot butter sauce. I set aside some wings for the kids before coating mine in sauce, it was spicy but not atomic. My husband's were probably ATOMIC as he made up his own dipping sauce using all the remnants of his hot sauces. He loves HOT sauce and the hotter the better. I dipped mine in some yummy chunky blue cheese dressing.


As my regular readers know, I didn't grow up in North America so I am only vaguely aware of what constitutes a Waldorf salad. The Cafe World game had you gathering walnuts, celery and lettuce and I knew there had to be apples in there. So I came up with my own version, although after further investigation I suppose you couldn't really call mine a Waldorf salad at all. It doesn't have grapes or raisins and isn't in a mayonnaise dressing. But what the hell, no apologies, mine was good, better than good, it was superb!! After using a blue cheese dressing the night before for the wings, I got a craving for some good blue cheese.  So this is my version:

Jen's Apple & Walnut Salad:

A bag or about 12 handfuls of mixed salad greens
2 stalks celery sliced
1 small green apple cored and thinly sliced
1 small red apple cored and thinly sliced
1/4 cup walnut crumbs
1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
Vinaigrette or dressing of choice (I used a zesty Italian)

Toss together greens, celery and apple. Sprinkle with walnuts and blue cheese.


I bought a package of blood pudding and cooked it up with some mash and butternut. I remember blood pudding from my childhood. My dad would buy it and I remember enjoying it and considered it a special treat. I haven't eaten it since then and couldn't even remember what to expect. It was good-ish, although it is very rich and I think it should be eaten in small quantities. No recipe here, just a dish to cross off the list.


I unlocked the Waldorf Salad and there is also a new cake - Gem Cake.

Next Up: I'm making Kung Pao Stir Fry this weekend.

Progress: 75/86

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