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Name: margalit
Location: Massachusetts, United States Professional writer, educational advocate, opinionated ultra liberal mother of 18 year old twins, living life in the slow lane due to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, congestive heart failure, and diabetes.

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Friday, October 05, 2007

What is your "signature dish?"

Whenever I watch TV and they have cooking stuff on, there is always a 'signature dish'. I never know what that really means. Is it a recipe you cooked up from scratch that nobody else knows how to make? Is it a recipe that you're known for because you only know how to cook that dish and an omlette? Is it the dish that you make EVERY freaking holiday? Just what the heck IS a signature dish, anyhow?

Why I'm pondering this is beyond me, but now I'm all paranoid because I don't have a signature dish. What is wrong with me? Why have I lived over half a century without a signature dish? I feel like I've gotta get busy right away to create my signature dish or I'll end up being a disappointment to my children.

There are a few things I could call my signature dish, I suppose. The BBQ brisket I'm marinating right this second in my fridge could be my signature dish. It's like the most delicious thing ever. But I didn't make up the recipe. Damn!

The incredibly turkey I make at every frigging holiday could be my signature dish. It's different than most turkey I've ever eaten, highly seasoned and really a knock out. But turkey? Come on. It is SIMPLE to make. There's no skill involved at all. Double damn!

So now I'm down to tuna casserole, lasagne, lemon-dill salmon, and Trader Joe's frozen entrees. See, this is mortifying. I have no signature dish. I'm a failure in the kitchen.

Although I do bake. I bake a lot. I make the best challah in the world. I didn't make up the recipe, but I have refined it and it's unreal. Dairy, not pareve, but it's GOOD.

Can baked goods be my signature dish? What about you? What's your signature dish?

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10 Comments:

Blogger The Hotfessional said...

I Don't Cook. Therefore, no signature dish. But, I get asked to bring my easy-peasy-crab dip to many many events.

5/10/07 12:13 PM  
Anonymous Becky68 said...

Sure baked goods can be a signature dish!
I like them better than entrees myself!
I have the same problem- I can do quite a few things really well (Three Cheese Spinach Roll ups- Chicken Divan- Chocolate Raspberry Pound Cake) But I didn't make up the recipes - only made them better!
Hope you're doing better health- wise

5/10/07 1:09 PM  
Blogger Major Bedhead said...

Since I don't get paid to cook, I don't feel I need to have a signature dish. Although I do make a mean chili.

5/10/07 1:22 PM  
Blogger Shan said...

Personally, I think if you can cook the socks off something then you've earned the right to call it your signature dish.

5/10/07 2:58 PM  
Blogger moon said...

I am a great cook when I want to be lol...but alas, I too, do not have a signature dish...omg..another lozer among us!! (hangs head in shame)
I have never invented anything..but I can cook or bake many a great recipe...even carried on many dish my grandmother and her mom used to make through the generations...delicious dark fudge or heavenly butter tarts that I only make during xmas because they are too good to make all yr round lol...can't resist them..so to not gain to much weight I don't make them often.
OK, so we don't have signature dishes....but hey..we are still contributing to society ..improving existing recipies...and best of all...we are kick ass bloggers!!! LOL

5/10/07 4:09 PM  
Blogger Dave2 said...

I can cook a frozen pizza like nobody's business, I tell you what!

5/10/07 5:13 PM  
Blogger margalit said...

Dave, you KNOW your signature dish is an egg sandwich with coke W/Lime on the side. And maybe one of those "special" pop tarts you love so much.

5/10/07 5:38 PM  
Anonymous bethany actually said...

I would think just home-baked bread could be your signature dish! I agree with shan, whatever you've become known for cooking really well is your signature. My signature dish is probably either Chocolate-Swirled Banana Bread or Spicy Peanut-Butter Noodles.

5/10/07 7:19 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

I've got a few - chicken (or tofu) in green curry sauce for casual meals, yam souffle for holidays, butterscotch brownies (when I remember to bring the chips from the States)...

Makes it hard to branch out sometimes, when people keep asking for the same old same old.

6/10/07 5:38 AM  
Anonymous jo said...

I've been keeping this 'live' in my reader for a few days so i could ponder this over.
I agree 'signature dish' has some connotations that you break it out whenever requested to host a party or bring something.
I guess all I can give you are the oft repeated or requested dinner party or plain old dinner items.

chicken with poblano pesto nad jack cheese wrapped in phyllo and baked served with a garlic sauce

chicken korma - an indian dish that is not hot, but well spiced with raisins, saffron and almonds

roast chicken stuffed with fresh herbs, roasted garlic and lemons with an herb and garlic compound butter under the skin served with potatoes roasted in duck fat (far less cholesterol than schmaltz...who knew?

plum and raspberry crumble via Ina Garten but changed to mine

pork tenderloin stuffed with prunes and dried cherries soaked in cognac, then the whole roast is wrapped in bacon and roasted. yea, not so kosher i know, but omg.

8/10/07 4:41 PM  

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