Monday, April 14, 2008

A Dollar Dish Duel!!!

In keeping with my motto of this blog, I decided to just go for it and start an event...So, I am announcing my DOLLAR DISH DUEL!!!!

As previously mentioned, inspired by an article in the New York Times entitled "5 Cooks, $40, 5 Dishes, 3 Desserts," I want to challenge everyone to make a dish for $5 that must feed at least 2 people. So hit up a dollar store or be creative with what you can find at your local grocery store. Don't live in the US? Convert to your currency here. In your post, please let us know the prices of your ingredients.

One exception: You may use 3 staples from your pantry (salt/pepper/oil or something like that).

Please email the entry to ginnygetsfloury AT gmail DOT com with "Dollar Dish Duel" in the subject line. Include the following information:

* Your name and location
* The name of your blog
* Your blog URL
* The URL for your post
* If you are not a blogger, please partcipate! Just email me the recipe, a description of how you came up with the dish and a picture if possible. (Mom, I think you should join in the fun!)

Deadline: May 5, 2008 (round-up soon afterwards)

UPDATE: The winner will receive The Improvisational Cook by Sally Schneider after my judges make their decision.

Ok, I refuse to never have a post without some food. I made this Fig and Walnut Tapenade with Goat Cheese last night for a dinner party. It was easy to make and a huge hit with my friends!

Fig and Walnut Tapenade with Goat Cheese
(adapted from

1 cup chopped stemmed dried Calimyrna figs
1/3 cup water
1/3 cup chopped pitted Kalamata olives or other brine-cured black olives
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon drained capers
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts

2 5.5-ounce logs soft fresh goat cheese, each cut crosswise into 1/2-inch-thick rounds
Assorted breads and/or crackers

1. Combine chopped figs and 1/3 cup water in heavy medium saucepan.
2. Cook over medium-high heat until liquid evaporates and figs are soft, about 7 minutes. Transfer to medium bowl.
3. In a food processor, chop figs olives, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, capers, walnuts and chopped thyme.
4. Season tapenade to taste with salt and pepper. (Can be made 3 days ahead. Cover and refrigerate. Bring to room temperature before serving.)
5. Arrange overlapping cheese rounds in circle in center of medium platter. Serve with breads and/or crackers.

P.S. Please spread the word on my event. A cute logo will hopefully follow soon!


VeggieGirl said...

what a fun challenge!! :0D

Manggy said...

Yum, tapenade! I don't know what a fig tastes like though :/

I hope I can contribute something, gulp! You can register at to publicize your event :)

Ginny said...

veggiegirl- thanks! I hope you give it a shot! :)

manggy- its me your address, I can at least send you some dried figs (that's allowed, right?) thanks for the advice!

Sylvie said...

That's a great event, I'll get my thinking cap on. Gotta say though $5.00 won't get you evry far in the UK as food is a lot more expensive here. I'm sure I'll come up with something though. The food looks great too!

Neen said...

$5... guess I better hit up a local Latin American or Indian grocery! I'm always super impressed at how far a dollar stretches there. Just yesterday, we picked up 20 serrano peppers for 50 cents (!!). Hmm... probably meatless is a good idea, since that's always expensive... sorry, brainstorming aloud! Thanks for encouraging such creativity!

Mike of Mike's Table said...

Hmm, that's a tricky one. I'll have to give this one some thought...

Kevin said...

This challenge sounds interesting. The Tapenade sounds tasty!

LyB said...

Yay! Your first event! Boy, I have to start thinking about this now! :)

Ginny said...

sylvie- ack! I forgot that just a simple conversion will not reflect the differing food prices. Do the best you can but if you need to you may go above the $5.

neen- I know! I sometimes go to a local Asian market because it is so much cheaper...why is that? huh? brainstorm away! also, I realized we both live in DC...thats awesome! where do you like to shop?

mike- yea! I'm so excited to see what you come up with!

kevin- It was really good...I was a bit concerned at first but everyone loved it!

lyb- I am the same way- I have no idea what I am going to do...we shall see! :)

Ivy said...

This is a great challenge. I think I have something ready for your event.

Anonymous said...

I'm glad I stumbled across this contest. I'll have to dig up a recipe of my mom's that was always a hit and always cheap. Yay!!