My friends, I have had a WEEK. It has been the best of times and the worst of times. It has been a rollercoaster. It has been a week that needed…NEEDED…to end with the comfort food that is a skillet full of eggs cooked in sweet sliced leeks that have been sautéed in bacon drippings, with thick cut bacon scattered on top. Sure, I could have made plain old bacon and eggs, but there is something about having the eggs cook up to dreamy perfection in a bed of those tender leeks that takes plain old bacon and eggs from regular to comfort food extraordinaire, all inside of about 15 minutes. It’s warm. It’s wonderful. Let’s make it!
A while back I discovered Jamie Oliver’s chicken baked in milk, and my entire world as it related to chicken was rocked forevermore. The tenderness! The flavor! The gorgeous, delicate sauce! I couldn’t believe it/stop talking about/stop dreaming about it. The only teeny tiny issue was that it takes a couple of hours to prep and make, which is totally doable on a lazy Sunday afternoon, but not so much on a busy weeknight. And so I started scheming about how to get some of the baked chicken wonderfulness, but in a quicker, weekday-friendly way. Please meet chicken poached in milk, your new weeknight chicken best friend.
The hardest thing about making spinach vichyssoise is spelling the word vichyssoise. I have been down the vichyssoise road before, and honestly, that’s the thing that always gives me pause. Not the making of this cool, creamy, bursting with early summer flavor soup. Nope, the fact that one day I will be sitting in front of my computer wanting to tell you all about it, and dreading the fact that I will have to type out V I S H Y S S O I S E approximately triple the number of times you will actually read it, because of all the back-spacing and correcting. But since YOU will probably not have to type it out once, this whole experience is going to be delectably easy and delicious! Here’s why.
Ah, Sandwich Night! There’s something about having sandwiches for supper that makes me feel I am misbehaving a little bit dinnertime-wise, but in a fun, I’m-getting-away-with-something way. I tend to pull out Sandwich Night on days when even thirty minutes in the kitchen just seems like too much after whatever day it’s been. You know those days, right? Those days REQUIRE Sandwich Night. And while there is nothing wrong with a good old pb&j, a fancy, decadent sandwich can be tossed together in about ten minutes. That’s right…ten minutes is the only thing standing between you and a roast beef sandwich with sauteed leeks and Boursin cheese.
Oh, how I love chicken pot pie. The warm comfortingness of it all – the tender chicken and veggies, the golden crust, the delectable taste of everything being right with the world. But let’s face it, chicken pot pie is a late fall/early winter kinda thing. Now that the days are longer and we’re finally putting our winter coats into the back of the closet, hot and crusty pot pies are no longer the kind of thing we are looking for, supper-wise. But I can’t live without my trusty chicken pot pie, even if spring IS in the air. The only thing left to do was to lighten it up a little for the season.
I’m currently in the midst of a love affair with leeks. If you haven’t fallen head over heels for them like I have yet, leeks are tall green and handsome vegetables that are in the same general family as onions. They seem to be available pretty much all year round, and when they are sliced thin and sautéed up in a little butter or olive oil or bacon drippings they are both sweet and tangy all at the same time. I’ve totally abandoned my trusty basket of yellow onions to carry on with leeks, and my current favorite leek dish is this glorious mixture of pasta, bacon, parmesan cheese, cream and you-know what.