Aug 18: Popeye’s Chicken & Spinach Salad; Vegetable Gyoza in Ginger Miso Broth

Lunch

For lunch we revisited the Popeye’s chicken, but with a Spinach and Blue Cheese salad with bacon vinaigrette dressing.

  • The chicken is $2.98 per serve with tax
  • The salad was on special for $1.99 and we used half today (without the blue cheese or toasted quinoa) or 50c per serve.

Lunch today was $3.48 per serve.

Dinner

While Friday and Saturday nights are often days where we prepare a meal that requires longer prep times, but this Saturday night we decided on our goto easy meal: Vegetable Gyoza in a Ginger Miso Broth with a poached egg.

  • The Miso Ginger broth was $1.99 or $1.00 per serve
  • The gyoza were $3.99, or $2.00 per serve
  • Add 20c for seasonings.
  • A pastured egg is 50c.

As always, a good meal, on the table quickly, for $3.70 per serve.

Aug 17: Popeye’s Fried Chicken; Sous Vide Wild Caught Salmon with Caesar Salad

Lunch

Since we were very close to a Popeye’s Louisiana Kitchen, we stopped in for an 11 piece special with large red beans and rice.

  • The chicken is $2.98 per serve with tax
  • The red beans and rice is $2.12 per serve with tax.

Lunch today was $5.10 per serve.

Dinner

Foodie Greg has decided that Friday will be “fishy Friday” but with a broad definition of what constitutes “fish.” Tonight he chose wild caught salmon and souse vidé it to perfection.

We substituted oven baked cheese bites for croutons hitting both parmesan and crouton buttons, with more flavor.

  • The salmon was $7.58 or $3.79 per serve
  • The organic Romaine lettuce cost $1.99 or 99c per serve
  • Oven baked cheese bites (instead of croutons and Parmesan) are $2.49 for the pack and we used half on the salad, or 67c per serve
  • A pastured egg is 50c or 25c per serve
  • Add 30c for other dressing ingredients.

A great meal for $6.00 per serve. The soue vide salmon has that perfect “just barely cooked” texture, but enough that it still flakes. This makes the salmon buttery soft in the mouth, rather than the coarser texture of further cooking.

Aug 16: Tuna & Swiss; Corned Beef, Sauerkraut & Swiss; Thick Cut Pork Chop with Apple Endive Salad

Lunch

For lunch we shared a corned beef, sauerkraut and Swiss sandwich and a Sweet and Spicy Tuna pouch with Swiss. Both were good.

  • The corned beef was $7.26 for 1.01 lb and we used 2oz per serve, or 46c per serve
  • The tuna was $2.00 or $1.00 per serve
  • Sprouted Rye bread is 32c per serve
  • Swiss slices are 12 for $3.99 or 33c per serve
  • Add 45c for butter and mayo.

Two decent sandwiches for $2.56 per serve.

Dinner

We are always pleased when our Keller Crafted meat box includes thick cut, bone in pork chops. Brined and grilled they are spectacular.

Tonight we paired it with an apple and endive salad, which was a perfect balance to the richness of the pork.

  • The pork chops were $9.71 each
  • The endive were $1.49 or 75c per serve
  • Walnut pieces were $1.20 or 60c per serve
  • The Envy apple was 48c or 24c peer serve
  • Add 20c for dressing ingredients.

The pork chops were amazingly good and the salad a perfect balance. An excellent meal for $11.50 per serve.

Aug 15: Chicken & Salad Roll; Sushi Feast

Lunch

For lunch we heated a par cooked roll and stuffed it with roast chicken breast and the remaining Strawberry Harvest salad.

  • The roll is 63c per serve
  • The chicken is 88c per serve
  • The salad kit was $3.49 and we used the remaining ⅓  or 55c per serve
  • Add 25c for the spread.

Lunch today was good as long as you didn’t get too much of the strawberry soda pop flavor, for $2.13 per serve.

Dinner

We were with a friend and decided to get dinner in Los Feliz rather than travel home in the worst traffic period. On her recommendation we went to Yen Sushi and Sake Bar.

We ordered an enormous amount of food, but managed to finish it all! The servings were just a little bit bigger than usual, and the quality just a little bit higher than expected for a neighborhood sushi bar.

It was very good for $33.27 per person.

Aug 14: Corned Beef, Tabouli & Swiss, Corned Beef, Spicy Labné & Sauerkraut; Roast Chicken Leg with Strawberry Harvest Salad

Lunch

A pair of toasted corned beef sandwiches. One with tabouli and Swiss, the other with spicy labné and sauerkraut.

  • The corned beef was $7.26 for 1.01 lb and we used 2oz per serve, or 91c per serve
  • The tabouli is $2.69 for 8 ounces or 34c per serve
  • Sprouted Rye bread is 32c per serve
  • Swiss slices are 12 for $3.99 or 33c per serve
  • Add 45c for butter and mayo.

Two decent sandwiches for $2.35 per serve.

Dinner

An easy to prepare meal using the chicken legs from our supermarket chicken, and a Strawberry Harvest salad kit.

  • The chicken leg is $1.75 per serve
  • The salad kit was $3.49 and we used about ⅔ or $1.10 per serve.

The salad ingredients were fine, but the dressing was overly simplistic, lacking in acid and way too sweet. Otherwise a decent meal for $2.85 per serve.

Aug 13: Tomato & Mayo; Gordon Biersch

Lunch

We still had a large heirloom tomato to use, so we had toasted tomato and mayo sandwiches.

  • The heirloom tomato was $1.33 and we used about ⅓ or 22c per serve
  • Sprouted Rye bread is 32c per serve
  • Add 45c for butter and mayo.

Excellent ingredients, treated well make for a great sandwich for 99c per serve.

Dinner

Although schedule to have dinner with a business associate, we ended up eating at Gordon Biersch alone. While waiting we shared the calamari appetizer. The calamari was lightly drenched and perfectly fried.

We both chose the Smokey Chicken Tostadas, which is full of flavor because it’s on the ‘light’ menu. We find vegetarian or ‘light’ food tries harder to add flavor because they can’t fall back on meat.

Tonight’s meal was one of the better options at Gordon Biersch for $27.74 per serve.

Aug 12: Roast Chicken Breast, Heirloom Tomato on Fresh Baguette; Deconstructed Jambalaya Take 2

Lunch

We made a shopping trip to Jons supermarket, where they have the best supermarket roast chicken by a good margin. Once again, it proves that good ingredients make the simplest meal exceptional.

  • The chicken is $6.99 and we shared a breast, or 88c per serve
  • The heirloom tomato was $1.33 and we used about ⅓ or 22c per serve
  • The baguette is $2.79 and we used half at lunch, or 70c per serve
  • Add 20c for mayo.

A great roll for $2.00 per serve.

Dinner

We revisited the deconstructed Jambalaya by dropping the shrimp and slicing the andouille before frying it off to make it crispy (as inspired by the Yardhouse version).

The perfect Jambalaya would have this rice mix, sous vide shrimp and fried off andouille, but it was pretty good without shrimp.

  • The andouille sausage was $7.98 for the pack and we used half or $2.00 per serve
  • Rice adds 33c per serve
  • The celery was $1.69 and we used ¼ or 11c per serve
  • Organic bell pepper was $1.17 or 29c per serve
  • A can of Fire Roasted Tomatoes is $1.69 or 43c per serve
  • Add 20c per serve for seasonings.

The crispy andouille worked very well. A good meal for $3.36 per serve.

Aug 11: Baked Beans & Swiss; Soutzoukakia with Tabboleh and Dolmas

Lunch

We smooshed a can of Giant Baked Beans onto two sandwiches, topped them with Swiss and toasted until the cheese was good and melted. They were pretty good!

  • The baked beans are $1.99 or $1.00 per serve
  • Sprouted Rye bread is 32c per serve
  • Swiss slices are 12 for $3.99 or 33c per serve
  • Add 45c for butter, mayo and capers.

Not the wildest flavor sensation but a tasty sandwich anyway, for $2.00 per serve.

Dinner

It was time to revisit Soutzoukakia.  Once again we used one can of fire roasted crushed tomato, and a can of Trader Joe’s Grecian Style Eggplant,Tomato and Onion. This is an excellent addition and it really elevated this dish. We cannot recommend it highly enough.

While the recipe could easily serve three people, we consumed the lot!

  • Ground lamb was $6.99 or $2.33 per serve
  • An egg is 50c or 17c per serve
  • 8 oz Panko breadcrumbs are $2.99 and we used half, or 25c per serve
  • Cotija cheese, substituting for Parmesan is $3.99 for 8oz and we shared 2 oz or 50c per serve
  • 1/4 cup and a tablespoon of red wine – halved – is 34c per serve
  • Canned crushed tomatoes were $1.25 for the can, or 42c per serve
  • The eggplant, tomato and onion is $2.49 or 83c per serve
  • Onions, shallot and garlic adds 25c per serve
  • Parsley was $1.49 for the bunch, but we only used 1/4 or 13c per serve
  • Fresh mint came from our garden
  • Tomato paste comes in a 90c can, but we used 1/8 or 5c per serve
  • Tabouli costs $2.69 for 8 oz and we had 2 oz each, or 67c per serve
  • The tin of dolma’s is $2.49 or 83c per serve.

The lamb version creates a software patty with more flavor than with beef, so we like this version better for  $6.77 per serve.

Aug 10: Tomato and Swiss; Deconstructed Jambalaya

Lunch

Since we had a tasty heirloom tomato we decided to go for the simple cheese and tomato toasted sandwich, which was good.

  • The heirloom tomato was $1.57 and we used half on the sandwiches, or 40c  per serve
  • Sprouted Rye bread is 32c per serve
  • Swiss slices are 12 for $3.99 or 33c per serve
  • Add 45c for butter and mayo.

A  good sandwich for $1.50 per serve.

Dinner

We’ve enjoyed several good jambalaya over the years, and recently a deconstructed version at the Yardhouse chain. While deconstructed this goes in a different direction. The rice gets the vegetable component in the pressure cooker, while the andouille sausage and shrimp were Sous Vide to perfection. The rice mix made four serves.

  • The shrimp was $7.99 for the pack, and we used half, or $2.00 per serve
  • The andouille sausage was $7.98 for the pack and we used half or $2.00 per serve
  • Rice adds 33c per serve
  • The celery was $1.69 and we used ¼ or 11c per serve
  • Organic bell pepper was $1.17 or 29c per serve
  • A can of Fire Roasted Tomatoes is $1.69 or 43c per serve
  • Add 20c per serve for seasonings.

Keeping the shrimp separate allows us to cook it to its perfect temperature, which is a lot lower than if it sat in a boiling stew! The andouille was fine sous vide but we think we’ll fry it off Yardhouse-style next time. A great meal for $5.36 per serve.

Aug 9: Breakfast; Grilled Japanese Eggplant with Satay Sauce and Bean Sprout Salad

Breakfast

Still in San Diego the Foodies had a working breakfast with Cirina Catania at Nutmeg Bakery Cafe.

Foodie Greg had the nutmeg scramble:

Foodie Philip had an omelette with spinach and skirt steak with a mushroom dressing, served with home fries, fruit and sourdough toast.

Both were both great meals, cooked exactly as ordered. Our friend generously paid for our meal.

Dinner

While Thursday night is our steak/pork chop grill night, tonight we felt like having satay sauce, but had no appropriate steak in the freezer. Having done it once before, we decided to substitute marinated and grilled Japanese eggplant.

  • Two eggplants were $1.35 or 68c per serve
  • The peanut butter was $3.99 and we used about 1/8,  or 25c a serve
  • Other seasonings in the satay sauce add 35c per serve
  • Add 50c for marinade ingredients
  • Bean sprouts were $1.49 but we used the remaining ⅓ or 25c per serve
  • Carrot adds 10c per serve
  • Mint came from our garden.

The eggplant ends up with a custardy, creamy center while being nicely caramelized from the sugars in the marinade, which also contributes to the crispy skin. Overall, way more flavor than even a great piece of top sirloin, but with a very different texture.

The peanut sauce, as usual was the star, while the bean sprout salad gave a wet, crunch balance to the spicy eggplant and satay sauce mouthful. A very satisfying meal for $2.13 per serve, about ⅓ of the equivalent steak meal!