Dinner Experiments

On Thursday, we wanted to have a special dinner to celebrate a successful seven days of our nephew staying with us.  We decided to have mussels, something we’ve craved since seeing a Ray Mears episode where he collects some bivalves and bakes them in the sand.  However, I’ve been a little intimidated to cook them myself.  Mussels are alive when you buy them, and then if their shells don’t open while you cook them, you can’t eat them because you could get sick.  It all sounded dangerous, and I wasn’t sure about it.  However, we bravely went to the store and bought some mussels, and some little neck clams, too.
It was actually so easy… and fast, too!  I used this recipe (omitting the shrimp).  And oh my… it was heavenly.  We don’t eat bread, so we dipped steamed broccoli in the tomato broth, and it was just amazing.  It is something I will definitely make again!

My other experiment started because of a trip to Full Circle Farm in Sunnyvale.  We bought a Hubbard squash from their farm stand, which I’d never seen before.  It’s kind of humble looking…


The woman at the farm stand said that it’s not as sweet as an acorn or butternut squash, so I wanted to do something special with it.  I found this recipe, which makes the soup have a slight Indian flavor.  So, I created Indian meatballs to accompany the soup, loosely following this recipe.  It was pretty yummy and flavorful, although I think I could have bumped up the spice a bit in the soup.

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