danistrulytheman

I'm STILL a self confessing, self professing know-it-all, or so I think!


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everything but the kitchen sink lasagna

the whole nine yards lasagna… was a coin flip, both blogposts work/rock! not one to be shy w/leftovers… #foodforafrigginweek! meat sauce is my most complicated, time involved, meatsaucemakingendeavourever. oxtail and veal are the stars of this show… took hours of low ‘n slow-cooking perfection. puts my awesome lasagna bolognese to shame, it’s THAT good! sheets are Italian (of course), these are the thick-ass ones w/wavy ridges, made from durum wheat semolina (of course, again). five cheeses – don’t ask, and went w/a chianti reserva to seal the deal! mangia tutti!

megamofodeepdishlasagna! now, that’s a blogpost folks!

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Saturday Spa-ghett!

technically Fileja Calabresi, but spewing that three times fast is a mouthful of marbles gone horribly sideways, plus ain’t alliterative! in any case, is spaghetti epitomized to the nth degree… and then some!

danssauce is a culmination of time+effort… as well as my superduperchefskillset!!

… and for all ya foodies out there… shite def don’t get better than this!!

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meatballs w/ an oxtail kicker!

… that’s right!! started w/searing a beauty piece of oxtail before doin’ ma regular meatball thang (this is shit i make up as i go folks, i swear)… was looking to give that extra depth of flavour. is perfect when ya think ’bout it… my meatballs are veal & pork, the beef completes the meat trifecta – genius! btw, deglazed w/white wine too for more oomph! and, we chefs love oomph! purposely wasn’t shy using a shite-load of homemade sauce filled to the le creuset brim today either! why? how do you spell leftovers? l-e-f-t-o-v… never mind, lol! sides of creminis and hot (i mean, HOT) ontario peppers are the perfect compliment. at this point no skimping… olives too y’all! decided on my famous meatball sang today, provolone, romano def don’t hurt my fave/best (ok, ONE of, lol) italian meals ever! finished w/an obligatory splash of masi of course, and … roberto’s yer zio!!

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round ‘n round we go!

Is how I’ve been… my brain frantically figuring out food for today! Thought I had it all set in stone last night too… Zin Zen was the plan, and don’t get me started on that one, woulda been the day of all days… the eats of all eats… the best $0.99 I ever spent! YES… 99¢ folks … y’all have no idea (OK, Caymus is a clue for sleuths in ya)!! But, Mother Nature stepped in (bitch… cunt, lol), and ultimately, ultra high humidity nixed it, nipped it in the bud! As a result, today dansplans kept changing, OVER AND OVER… at least dozen times! And, after much bustin’ brain against the wall (ok, pillow, lol), here is were we stand!

Fresh ground, hand formed burger, cremini ‘shrooms, heirloom tomato, swiss emmentaler, special sauce, on a buttered and grilled kaiser bun!

Verdict? Umm?!

… GUILTY!!

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homemade pasta, homemade sauce!

not mine, mine! zucchini and eggplant agnolotti, and mushroom moons (stuffed w/grilled mushrooms and garlic bread crumbs – my fave). all on a tuesday night after a long hard day at work, and after a 6k run… not bad dan, not bad!

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flour flower power!

hold on, it keeps gettin’ better… hold on!

lasagna and hydrangeas! went paul bunyan on the leftovers!

… w/olives and ripasso (both from italy)!

AND, in celebration of St. Joseph’s Day, the best zepp this side of napoli!

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hold on, it keeps gettin’ better… hold on!


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My Portuguese Christmas!

… my Portuguese family! Just got back home… getting my hair looking all pretty… in for the evening… kicking off my 4 day holiday, when Antonio surprises me w/this… wishing me a Merry Christmas!! He says the cake is called King Cake (Bolo Rei, in Portuguese), and it’s still warm when he hands it to me! Yum-F-O!! I see from the sticker, this one comes courtesy Seara Bakery… what a lovely presentation! Funny; minutes from home when stopped at a traffic light, snuck a peek and was in disbelief the amount of cars, and the lack of room w/more cars trying to get in (and out) of Seara… welcome to a Portuguese Christmas Eve, lol! He tells me the port wine is to be enjoyed after dinner! I’m enjoying everything right now just staring at it… can’t stop thinking about all your kindness, and love! Thanks big guy… and, thanks Lina too! Much love!!

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Plus; was a sunny, balmy 13º C on a global warming Toronto’s Xmas eve? Yep, today was a GOOD day!!

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meatballs, mushrooms, and marinara!

… m&m, & m! long story short; know damn well whole roasted mushrooms don’t belong – my 1st intent was meatball sandwiches. out the window that went. made my famous balls, instead served it simply. if served w/ $50 Barolo constitutes simply. next day, became my traditional spaghettini&meatballs (love this) meal. 3rd day turned into ‘the tossin’ the lot, the whole kit and kaboodle – then baking (my fave, btw – sorry, no pics) it. plus, still have 2 more days eats left! sweet, my 5 day eye-talian meal!

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Boy oh Barolo!

Special ordered this December 2 … I blame falling for AMEX’s front of the line privileges afforded me! Arrived yesterday – was well within their 8-12 week delivery window! Beautiful attention to detail regarding package and delivery! Very impressed! Oh, and what’s w/ that awesome order number 95959 … it’s a prime, a palindrome too! I love it, it’s a sign from my number God, means wine’s def got to be exceptional! Can’t wait to try, and I know exactly what I’ll be cooking … more pics then, I promise! Oh, and for all inquiring minds – $100 for the deuce!

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new digs, and a new friend!

I LOVE my new kitchen, the whole place kinda rocks! New stainless steel fridge, new cabinets, counter-top, island, sink & faucet, above stove microwave, new backsplash, new bar stools … but the star of the show is a new gas stove!! My first time cooking w/ gas too. In fact I had a maiden meal all planned out, I wanted pasta w/ either braised/simmered oxtails, or veal shanks … but grocery store deals dictated otherwise, so it’s pasta w/ sausages & meatballs. Not too shabby a second fiddle! Oh, true story – wanted to serve my inaugural meal w/ a Barolo … and a couple days ago allowed myself a final budgetary indulgence. It was a front of the line, membership benefits I saw in my inbox, a limited release Barolo. Perfect timing! I pounced, and if any’s left, the rest of you plebes can search ‘n seek LCBO’s inventory, when it’s finally released to the general public. I payed the same price, $49.95/bottle (plus only $15 shipping) for the 2 bottles I bought. Oh, speaking of indulgences, I’m anxiously awaiting the arrival of my next to last one … that one should arrive anytime soon. Perhaps, another blogpost, lol?!

Ok, mostly pics, few words – better, eh? A couple of notes about my gas range. Of course we all know (even if you don’t own one, never have used one), the best feature is immediate heat. I love that. But, my fave new thing to get used to, is not only the incremental heat that is available, but unlike other types of ranges w/ burners that continually shut off, trying to moderate cooking temps – gas ranges don’t … there’s never that lull, the simmer/sizzle never stops. I LOVE that!! As promised, pics …

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… yep, a sucker for sweet pussy!!


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sausages & chickpeas!

This is another one of my famous throw everything in the pot and hope for the best type of creations!! I bought sausages (hot Italian), and used whatever else I had in the house. I’ve been on a chickpeas roll of late, incorporating them in many meals I’ve been making … talk about awesome and healthy!! I grilled the sausages, then combined them w/ sautéed sweet onions, red peppers and kale. After a few minutes of sizzling ‘n flippin’ on high heat, I deglazed w/ white wine, added a bit of chicken broth, tossing in the chick peas, and bringing everthing to a simmer before placing in the oven to finish! Served w/ the obligatory/proverbial Italian crusty peasant loaf to sop up all the goodness, the best cheese you have in the icebox, a glass (or bottle, lol) of red vino, the lights dimmed creating the perfect ambience, Sting, or maybe Annie Lennox, playing softly in the background setting the mood… and yep, dansyermothereffinguncle

mungia mungia! farmer style mungia mungia …

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yum, yum, and YUMMO

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my stingy/meager portion (another blog post/lesson – another time) …

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leftovers w/ fried & caramelized onions! leftovers are ALWAYS better …

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Ascari … again!

Twice is always nice. Too tired, too lazy … this one’s a rush job, sorry folks. Just the pics!

Peroni

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Morandina

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Lasagna Bolognese

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Linguine Puttanesca

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Agnolotti w/ lamb tongue

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Trofie w/ sausage

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Limone w/ ricotta

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Bill

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Bill paid

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three meats tomato sauce w/ casareccia

Today I pan seared ossobucco, Italian sausages, and my famous meatballs … then gently plopped them into my homemade tomato sauce letting them slowly simmer for a few hours creating this flavourful gravy. Casareccia pasta, with its great texture really helps the sauce cling, sopping it up  … oh I also added a bit of broccoli rabe before serving to give it that extra oomph. Freshly grated Grana Padano Scelto, and a glass (or two) of vino … yep, life don’t get no better!!

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braised oxtail

… in a hearty Sangiovese/beef broth sauce w/ sundried tomatoes, onions, carrots, celery, and garlic on a bed of buttered egg noodles … Happy B-Day Tiff!!

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Beaujolais Nouveau

Today was the release date of these seasonal wines, ready-set-GO to be stocked on LCBO shelves for sale … well, were supposed to be, talking about the actual physically stocking part – LCBO employee dude was happier than a pig in shit (even commented how we were making his job/life easier) as we kept taking bottles directly out of the boxes from his cart. Every year it’s a mad rush, so get there early or prepare to drive from store to store getting what you want. I walked in with my cut out Toronto Star article (and a Tiffany K Post-it® with her wants for added accuracy – not to mention a way-too-early-in-the-a.m.-finger-wavingpay-explicit-attention-to-what-I’m-saying-so-as-to-not-fuck-it-up-session detailing said specific must-have purchases, doubly ensuring no errors from yours truly as well, lol) and immediately upon entering – mere minutes later, a couple of gents followed with their crib notes. Quick draw Dan had 3 bottles of the coveted Negrar Novello Del Veneto secured, but when I overheard one guy wanting/asking for a case of Negrar, snuck back and snagged my fourth bottle … this store’s allotment was only three cases, and after our troika was done picking, was left with a dozen bottles (after half an hour of the store opening … on the first day of the Beaujolais Nouveau release). And btw, that’s it folks – once when they’re gone, they’re GONE!! A few pics from the day …

Shelves starting to get stocked

My pile ‘o wine on a vacant shelf – minus the one, lol

And now four

Two bottles of Dubœuf Gamay Nouveau

Tollo Novello Rosso Terre Di Chieti and Catalans Primeur Syrah Merlot