Uncategorized And today’s dinner is …

And today’s dinner is …

One thing for sure this has to be quick because I’m a dasher today! So here’s what I’m making my friends who are visiting from St. Louis and famous or infamous Dupo, Ill. from St. Louis here visiting and they’re coming to dinner. I’m making patrones–little sweet Spanish fried peppers (we have them in tapas bars in Barcelona, eggplant croquetas, salad, spinach and broccoli medley with garlic, oil and hot pepper! and an American meatloaf–but Italian style–go figure. I’m considering an offering of potatoes also …

Oh and something I wanted to mention yesterday in response to my friend Elaine’s e-mail, but never got around to-she wrote saying that her granddaughter and the whole gang–of 13 and 4 dogs and a partridge in a pear tree, are hanging out at her summer digs … Granddaughter Zia tried to make octopus for her Iraqi boyfriend, whom E. refers to as “the terrorist,” because he misses food and dishes from his homeland … Anyway, part of the slippery beast got away from her and landed behind –well, why don’t I just quote directly from Elaine? A warning to everyone: Watch out! because from now on what you write me on an e-mail may show up in the Land of Blogoshpere … mine in particular!

Here’s her quote with my response below it–a true baring of the soul.

“We discovered (I think) that it wasn’t a mouse (stinking up the house)–it was part of a whole octopus that Zia prepared for her boyfriend, Karim, the terrorist from Iraq. She cooked for him all day and prepared the dishes he misses from home. Part of a whole octopus evidently got away from her and landed behind the small freezer.”

Does Zia know how to prepare octopus? If it’s freshly caught you must beat it against a rock. Over the years, I feel like I’ve done this before–sent you a recipe for something in the summertime …. Tell Zia not to overcook it or it toughens. Clean the head and take eyes out of it. After washing–boil water with a splash of red vinegar in it. Then holding it by the head let the tentacles into the boiling water–they will curl. Do this three or four times (you want them to curl), then let the whole octopus fall into the water. Reduce heat immediately to a simmer. Cook without a top for only 20 minutes–unless you want it tough for some crazy reason. Then when the time has expired, leave the octopus in the water until it is cool. Then cut up the tentacles into bite sized pieces and slice the head thin. Add to an already cooked tomato sauce for pasta, rice or couscous. Or make into a salad, using lots of lemons or limes, parsley, good olive oil, salt, lots of sliced garlic cloves, black olives ( I pit them), carrots and celery–hot pepper if desired–and refrigerate.

More on octopus to follow …