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Menu Plan for Winter II: Week 6, Day 1

Pan-Seared Tuna with Capers
Basmati Rice Pilaf
Cauliflower Cheese

Cooking time:  35 minutes for menu          Cooking schedule: see below for instructions

       I found a lovely chunk of Cheddar at the market, and, remembering how much we enjoyed the Broccoli Cheese a few weeks ago, had to make Cauliflower Cheese. Our local fish market has been kind of blah lately, so I bought frozen tuna filets and was very pleased.  Considering that most fish is frozen on the boats immediately after being caught, I decided there should be no difference.  It was excellent.

Pan-Seared Tuna with Capers

Total time: 15 minutes
     This is best with good sushi-grade tuna that is quickly seared on both sides and cool or just barely warm in the center.  If you get regular tuna you will need to cook it until it is closer to medium - well. Ask your fish monger (I love that word)... or the guy behind the counter.

Pan-Seared Tuna with Capers Ingredients:

 Instructions

Basmati Rice Pilaf

Total time: 20 minutes  or whatever your package says   
    I'm not sure of the proper definition of a 'Pilaf' but adding a bit of carrot, onion and celery can turn simple rice into a colorful, elegant side dish.

Basmati Rice Pilaf Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Cauliflower Cheese

Total time: 30 minutes
    As this is such a popular dish in England, I decided to use a proper Cheddar for it,  Your favorite cheese will work, but maybe not for the bright gold color.  The flour in the béchamel helps the cheese to melt into a velvety sauce without getting stringy.

Cauliflower Cheese Ingredients:

 Instructions:

Note:  Can be kept warm in a low oven (250F, 125C) for 10 - 15 minutes.

Cooking Schedule: 35 minutes
Assemble all food, utensils and serving dishes
Utensils: measuring cups, spoons, knives,
small bowl, medium skillet, small saucepan with lid,
saucepan with steamer basket and lid

Chop onion
Mince garlic
Chop carrot, celery
Chop olives , capers (if they're large)
Cut cauliflower, steam
Sauté onion, celery, carrot for rice
Add rice to vegetables, sauté
Add stock to rice, cover, simmer

Sauté garlic, fennel for tuna
Put fennel, garlic in bowl with capers, etc.
Sauté tuna
Remove cauliflower, cover to keep warm
Melt butter for cheese sauce
Add flour to butter for roux, stir
Turn tuna
Add milk to roux, stir until thick
Remove tuna, cover to keep warm
Add fennel, garlic, etc. to skillet, simmer
Stir cheese into béchamel, pour over cauliflower
Fluff rice
Spoon caper sauce over tuna, Serve