I'm taking my kitchen paperless (at least as far as non-bound recipes go) so welcome to my cookbook in a blog!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Buttermilk Caramel Syrup

Buttermilk  Caramel Syrup
1 1/2 cups buttermilk
1 cup sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup butter*
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
In a large saucepan, bring buttermilk, sugars, and butter to a boil over medium heat. Remove from heat and whisk  in soda and vanilla. It will bubble up a lot. Hopefully you used a large saucepan like I told you. As it cools, the bubbles will go away.
*Notes from Kara:
-The original recipe calls for 1/2 cup  butter. I cut back to 1/4 cup to save my waistline and my husband’s cholesterol, but you can feel free to use all of it if you so desire. I won’t stand in your way.

-This stuff is so delicious, we haven’t gone back to maple syrup. We also use it on buttermilk pancakes, waffles, and German pancakes. It can also be served over ice cream.

-Several readers have asked how long this will keep in the refrigerator. I’m not exactly sure because with 4 hungry boys we finish things off pretty fast. But I know we’ve kept some for at least 2-3 months and it was just fine.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread

Espresso Chocolate Chip Shortbread
from Smitten Kitchen

1 tbsp instant espresso powder
1 tbsp boiling water
8 oz. unsalted butter, room temperature
2/3 cup confectioners’ sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups all-purpose flour
4 oz. bittersweet chocolate, finely chopped OR 3/4 cup store-bought mini chocolate chips
confectioners’ sugar, for dusting (optional)

Dissolve espresso powder in boiling water. Set aside to cool to tepid.

Beat butter and confectioners’ sugar together on medium speed for about 3 minutes, until the mixture is very smooth. Beat in vanilla and espresso, then reduce mixer speed to low and add flour, mixing only until it disappears into the dough. Don’t work the dough much once the flour is incorporated. Fold in the chopped chocolate or chips with a sturdy rubber spatula.

Using the spatula, transfer dough to a gallon-size zip-loc bag. Put bag on a flat surface, leaving the top open, and roll the dough into a 9 x 10 1/2 inch rectangle that’s 1/4 inch thick. As you roll, turn the bag occasionally and lift the plastic from the dough so it doesn’t cause creases. When you get the right size and thickness, seal the bag, pressing out as much air as possible, and refrigerate the dough for at least 2 hours, or for up to 2 days.

Preheat the oven to 325°F. Put the plastic bag on a cutting board and slit it open. Turn the firm dough out onto the board (discard the bag) and, using a ruler as a guide and a sharp knife, cut the dough into 1 1/2-inch squares. Transfer the squares to the baking sheets and carefully prick each one twice with a fork, gently pushing the tines through the cookies until they hit the sheet (rumour has it you can skip this and they turn out just fine).

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes, rotating the sheets from top to bottom and front to back at the midway point. The shortbreads will be very pale–they shouldn’t take on much color. Transfer the cookies to a rack. If you’d like, dust the cookies with confectioners’ sugar while they are still hot. Cool the cookies to room temperature before serving. Makes about 3 dozen.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Make Your Own Season-All

2 tablespoons black pepper
1 tablespoon chili powder
2 tablespoon dried parsley
1 tablespoon garlic salt
1 tablespoon chicken bouillon granules
1 1/2 teaspoon onion salt
1 1/2 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon onion powder
1 teaspoon cumin
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
1/2 teaspoon curry
1/3 cup salt

Friday, November 4, 2011

Pumpkin Spice Syrup

Find the original post here!

* Extra suggestion - don't run out the day before and wait until the next morning to make this.  It makes for a less than pleasant morning because you want to be drinking your pumpkin spice latte, not MAKING the syrup!  :)

Pumpkin Spice Syrup


1 1/2 cups water
1 1/2 cups sugar
4 cinnamon sticks or 1 tablespoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons pumpkin purée


Combine water and sugar in a medium pot over medium heat. Cook until sugar has completely dissolved. Whisk in remaining ingredients. Cook for about 6 minutes, stirring frequently. Do not allow mixture to come to a boil. Strain syrup through cheesecloth into a large glass measuring cup. Transfer to bottle of your choice and store in the refrigerator.

To make a pumpkin spice latte, simply add about 1 1/2 tablespoons of syrup for each shot of espresso. For an iced latte, stir together syrup and espresso before adding desired amount of cold milk. For a hot latte, add frothed milk and stir to combine.  Top with whipped cream, if desired.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Heath Bar Crunch Cookie Bars

Heath Bar Crunch Cookie Bars
(Adapted from Martha Stewart’s Soft and Chewy Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe)

  • 2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 cup packed light-brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups Toffee Heath Bar Bits
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
  • Directions:
    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a small bowl, whisk together the flour and baking soda; set aside. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the butter with both sugars; beat on medium speed until light and fluffy. Reduce speed to low; add the salt, vanilla, and eggs. Beat until well mixed, about 1 minute. Add flour mixture; mix until just combined. Stir in the chocolate chips.
    3. Spray a 10x15x1 baking pan with non-stick cooking spray (a 9×13 pan will work as well). Spread cookie dough evenly in the pan.
    5. Bake cookies 10-12 minutes. They will still be soft in the center. Remove from oven, and let pan cool completely on a wire rack. Cut into desired amount of bars. ENJOY!

    Saturday, October 29, 2011

    Idaho Sunrise

    Idaho Sunrise

    Idaho Sunrise (Baked Eggs & Bacon in Potato Bowls)
    (Adapted from The Village Cook)

    • 1 large baked potato (russett or sweet)
    • 1 Tbsp. butter
    • 2 eggs
    • 2 strips bacon, cooked and diced
    • 2 Tbsp. shredded cheese
    • 1 Tbsp. fresh parsley, chopped
    • salt and freshly ground black pepper
    Lay the baked potato on its side, and use a knife to carefully cut off the top third of the potato.  With a spoon, hollow out the middle of the potato to make a “bowl”, leaving the potato as thick or thin as you’d like.  (Just remember, the more room you leave, the more room for eggs, bacon and cheese!)

    Place 1/2 tablespoon of butter in the middle of each bowl.  Then gently break an egg into each bowl, careful not to break the yolk.  Top with bacon, cheese, parsley, and then season with salt and pepper.

    Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-25 minutes, or until the egg whites are set.  Serve immediately.

    Potato and Cheese Pierogi with Sour Cream Sauce

    Potato and Cheese Pierogi with Sour Cream Sauce
    Please see the photos on My Gourmet Connection, from whence this came.  YUM!
    For the dough:

    3-1/2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for dusting
    3 large eggs
    2 tablespoons sour cream
    3/4 to 1 cup water

    For the filling:
    1-1/2 lbs baking potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch slices
    2 tablespoons unsalted butter
    1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
    1 small sweet onion, chopped
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
    3/4 to 1 cup grated dry farmer's cheese
    Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

    For the finished dish:
    1/2 stick butter, cut into 1 tablespoon portions
    1 recipe Sour Cream Garlic-Chive Sauce

    For the dough:

    In a large bowl or mixer, combine the flour, eggs, sour cream and 1/2 cup of water. Beat the eggs as you mix and gradually add the rest of the water until the mixture is combined.

    Turn the dough onto a well floured surface. Knead it gently, using a dropping technique (lift the dough from the surface and drop it down). Knead only until the ingredients are blended and the dough is smooth and slightly sticky, about 3 to 5 minutes. Be careful not to over work the dough.

    Wrap the dough ball in plastic wrap and let it rest for at least 20 to 30 minutes while you prepare the filling.

    For the filling:

    Put the potatoes in a medium pot and add just enough cold, salted water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are soft, about 20 minutes.

    While the potatoes cook, melt the butter and oil over medium heat in a large saute pan. Add the onion, garlic and thyme, cooking until the onion turns translucent, about 2 minutes. Lower the heat and continue cooking until onions caramelize slightly, about 20 minutes. You may need to add a bit more butter as the onion and garlic mixture cooks. Season with salt and pepper to taste and set aside to cool.

    When the potatoes are soft, drain them in a colander and lightly press out the remaining moisture. Return them to the pot, remove from heat and add the cooled onion mixture and the cheese. Mash them just until blended and large lumps are gone. Season again with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside to cool while you roll out the pierogi dough.

    Assemble and cook:

    Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. With lightly floured hands, pinch off tablespoon sized portions of the dough and roll them into balls. The balls should be about 1-1/2 inches in diameter, yielding about 3 dozen total.

    On a well floured surface, gently roll each ball with a rolling pin until about 1/8 inch thick and 3-1/2 inches round. Cover the finished rounds with a damp towel so they don't dry out while you're working.
    Once your rounds are rolled out, hold each in the palm of your hand, filling the center of it with a generous tablespoon of the potato mixture. Gently fold the round in half, pulling the edges away and pinching them firmly shut to enclose the filling. Be sure the edges are sealed by working from one end to the other.
    As you work, set your filled pierogi aside on a floured surface and cover them with plastic wrap.

    Working in batches, drop no more than 6 pierogi at a time into the boiling water. After they float back to the surface, allow them to cook another 2 to 4 minutes. Remove the pierogi with a slotted spoon and place on a towel to drain and cool.

    Sauté and serve:

    To finish the dish, heat a tablespoon or two of butter in a pan over medium heat and briefly sauté them in batches until they are slightly crispy and brown on the exterior. Transfer to a serving dish and top with Sour Cream Garlic-Chive Sauce.

    Makes about 3-1/2 dozen

    Sour Cream Garlic-Chive Sauce

    This sauce is a mellow combination of sour cream, garlic, and chives. It complements our recipe for homemade potato-cheese pierogi perfectly (which is why we created it), but it could be served over egg noodles, steamed new potatoes, or lightly sautéed chicken tenderloins. The sauce is dependent on the proper cooking of the garlic - it's crucial not to let it get brown and bitter.
    Mellow Garlic-Chive Sauce

    3 tablespoons butter
    2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
    2 tablespoons flour
    1-3/4 cup chicken broth (either homemade or low-sodium)
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/4 teaspoon white pepper
    1/4 cup sour cream
    1/3 cup chives

    Heat the butter in a large pan over medium heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring constantly until it softens and begins to turn a very light golden color. Be careful not to allow it to crisp or brown. Add the flour, and continue stirring until it is well incorporated into the butter and garlic. Continue cooking, stirring constantly, until the flour begins to turn golden yellow.

    Gradually begin stirring in the chicken broth, blending it with the flour mixture until the sauce is smooth, creamy and thickened. Add the salt and pepper, taste and adjust the seasoning if necessary. Whisk in the sour cream and blend until smooth. Add the fresh chives just before serving.

    Makes 2 cups

    Saturday, October 15, 2011

    Lofthouse Style Frosted Cookies

    These are naughty.  Packaged, processed, full of junk, and I hate to admit I buy them from time to time.  Heck, we trained one of my daughters as a little one to buckle herself up in her car seat with these.  (Buckle up, get a cookie.  She had it down in 3 trips.)

    Hmm . . . but now at least a home-made recipe . . . and with some tweaking I bet I could cut some white flour and sugar, etc.  I smell trouble, that's for sure!

    This is from sweetpeaskitchen.com
    • 6 cups flour, divided
    • 1 teaspoon baking soda
    • 1 teaspoon baking powder
    • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
    • 2 cups granulated sugar
    • 3 eggs
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 1 1/2 cups light sour cream
    For the Frosting:
    • 1 cup butter, at room temperature
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
    • 4 cups powdered sugar
    • 6 tablespoons heavy cream
    • Several drops food coloring
    • Sprinkles
    1. In a medium bowl, whisk 5 cups of flour, baking soda, and baking powder; set aside.
    2. In the bowl of a stand mixer with the flat beater attached, cream the butter and granulated sugar at medium speed until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula as needed. Add the eggs, one at a time beating until each is incorporated. Add the vanilla and sour cream and beat at low speed until combined.
    3. Add the dry ingredients and beat at low speed until just combined, about 30 seconds, scraping down the bowl as needed. Dough needs to obtain the right consistency for rolling, so add additional flour, 1/4 cup at a time, until this is achieved (up to 1 cup more flour). Divide dough into two sections. Flatten into rectangles about 1 1/2 inches thick, then wrap with plastic wrap. Chill in the refrigerator overnight.
    4. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or spray them with nonstick cooking spray, set aside.
    5. Generously flour a work area and rolling pin. With a rolling pin, roll the dough out to 1/4-inch thickness. Using a 2 1/2-inch round cookie cutter, cut out circles and transfer to a baking sheet. Bake for 7-8 minutes, until pale golden. Immediately transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.
    6. To make the frosting, in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, cream together the butter and vanilla. Slowly beat in the powdered sugar. Once smooth and creamy, add in heavy cream, 1 tablespoon at a time until the desired spreading consistency is achieved. If desired, add food coloring and beat until combined.
    7. Once cookies have cooled completely, frost and add sprinkles. Allow frosting to set, then store in an air-tight container. Let cookies sit for several hours before serving to allow the flavors to develop.

    Friday, October 14, 2011

    Pumpkin Spice Syrup

    Pumpkin Spice Syrup

    1 1/2 C water
    1 1/2 C sugar
    4 cinnamon sticks
    1/2 tsp ground cloves
    1/2 tsp ground ginger
    1 tsp ground nutmeg
    3 Tb pumpkin purée

    Combine water and sugar in a medium pot over medium heat until sugar dissolves.  Stir in the rest.  Cook for about 5-6 minutes, stirring frequently.  Try not to boil.  Pour into a glass container and store in the fridge.

    Use to taste for various coffee drinks.  YUM!

    Thursday, September 22, 2011

    Energy Bites

    This recipe was brought straight over from fooddoodles.com.

    Energy Bites
    makes approximately 2 dozen depending on size

    • 1/2 C nut butter(almond butter, peanut butter, sunflower seed butter or any other nut or seed butter.  Anything will work here)
    • 1/3 C honey(I believe brown rice syrup would also work.  I’m not sure of thinner sweeteners such as maple syrup and agave though as they may not hold together as well)
    • 1 C old fashioned rolled oats(you can toast for a nuttier flavor at 350 degrees for about 10 minutes)
    • 1 C shredded unsweetened coconut(you can substitute any dry ingredients for this, wheat bran or germ, oat bran, some ground flax seed(I wouldn’t recommending using an entire cup!), any kind of ground nuts or seeds.  For a cookie dough type bite try adding a few tablespoon of your favorite whole grain flour)
    • 1-2 tsp vanilla
    • pinch of sea salt if using a natural nut butter with no added salt
    • 1-2 tsp your favorite spices or spice combinations(optional)
    • 1/2 C other addins(any kind of whole or roughly chopped nuts or seeds, dried fruit, good quality chocolate chips, etc)
    In a large bowl add the nut butter, honey or other sweetener, vanilla and salt if needed.  Use less vanilla if yours is very strong or more if you really enjoy the vanilla flavor and don’t buy an alcohol based kind.  If all your ingredients are room temperature you should be able to stir to combine.  If this is difficult you can warm in the microwave for a few seconds or even place the bowl in an inch or two hot water for a few minutes to soften everything.  Once this is combined add the remaining ingredients.

    In this case I used almond butter and for my addins I used equal parts sesame seeds, poppy seeds and mini chocolate chips.  Mix well.  Once it’s all combined place in the fridge for about 30 minutes.  Then remove from the fridge, scoop out some dough and roll into a ball.  I find it’s much easier, and works better to squeeze the handful together to compact it and then roll it into a ball.

    If yours are too sticky you can considering adding more dry ingredients into them or rolling them in something like ground nuts, coconut, etc so they aren’t as sticky.  Place the balls in an airtight container either in the fridge or freezer for quick and easy snacks.

    Friday, September 9, 2011

    Death by Chocolate Trifle

    Yield:  12 servings

    1 large package instant chocolate mousse or instant chocolate pudding
    1 1/3 – 2 cups cold milk (1 1/2 for mousse, 2 for pudding)
    13-x9-inch pan of fudge brownies, cooled and cut into bite sized pieces
    1 package Heath toffee bits or 2 chocolate toffee candy bars, crushed into bits
    16 ounces whipped cream

    Prepare mousse or pudding according to package directions with the above listed amount of cold milk; set aside.

    Place about half of the brownie bites on the bottom of the trifle bowl, in a single layer.

    Evenly pour half of the pudding/mousse on top of the brownies in the trifle bowl.  Layer with half of the whipped cream, then half of the toffee bits.  Repeat layers one more time.  Chill for 4 hours before serving.

    Source:  Highland Hills Baptist Church Cookbook via Pennies on a Platter.

    Heavenly Chocolate Mousse

    Heavenly Chocolate Mousse

    From Pennies on a Platter

    8 oz semisweet chocolate chips
    1/2 cup cooled strong coffee, divided
    2 tablespoons butter (no substitutes)
    3 egg yolks
    2 tablespoons sugar
    1 1/4 cups whipping cream, whipped

    In a heavy saucepan or double boiler, heat chocolate, 1/4 cup coffee and butter on very low heat until the chocolate and butter are melted. Cool for 10 minutes.

    In another small heavy saucepan, whisk egg yolks, sugar and remaining coffee. Cook and stir over low heat until mixture reaches 160 degrees F, about 2-3 minutes.

    Remove from the heat; whisk in chocolate mixture.

    Set saucepan in the freezer and stir every 3 minutes until cooled, about 5-10 minutes.

    Fold in whipped cream. Spoon into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours or overnight.

    Source: Adapted from AllRecipes.com

    Thursday, August 25, 2011


    From A Raw Foods Cookbook

    Use 1-4 heads of cabbages, red, white, or a mix

    Remove some of the outer leaves and set aside

    Cut into chunks and then process (in batches) down to quite fine.  Add enough water to get the blender going well.

    Put cabbage in a big bowl and mix thoroughly.  If it seems dry, add some water and mix again.

    Press cabbage down, as far as it will go, should  not be watery, just moist.

    Put saved leaves on top and press down again.  Put a layer of plastic wrap over the top and press all down again.  Put a weight on top that will form to shape of bowl.

    Cover with a tea towel and put in a place you don't go very often, the smell gets strong during fermentation.

    In 3 days check to see whether you have sauerkraut.  You'll know because it will smell pickled and will be translucent.  If it isn't ready leave it for another day or so.

    Transfer to clean jars with tight lids and press down so no air is trapped.  Use immediately or store in fridge for months and use as needed.

    There is a lot of good bacteria in this!

    Columbia di Pasqua



    3 C flour
    2 eggs
    2 Tb sugar
    1.5 tsp dry yeast
    1 C warm milk

    sift flour into a bowl
    add sugar and eggs
    dissolve yeast in 1/4 C warm milk and 2 tsp sugar
    when yeast is foamy pour into bowl
    mix (well) items in bowl adding rest of warmed milk
    leave until it rises
    cut out pieces using a class
    steam 8-10 minutes on high, using a splatter screen over a boiling pot of water, with pyzy on top and covered with another pot.

    Inside Out Turkey Bacon Cheeseburgers w/ Oven-Baked Onion Rings

    From Rachael Ray

    6 slices turkey bacon
    1 Tb evoo
    1 C cornmeal
    2 tsp chili powder
    1 C flour (for dredging)
    1 1/2 C buttermilk
    1 lg sweet onion, sliced 1/2" thick and divided into rings
    2 pounds ground turkey breast
    1/4 C brown mustard
    3/4 C shredded sharp cheddar
    1/2 head of lettuce, chopped
    1 beefsteak tomato
    4 dill pickles, chopped

    Oven to 425.

    Cook bacon over med heat and crisp, 3-4 minutes each side.  Remove, cool, and chop.  Add evoo to remaining drippings and set aside.

    While bacon is crisping, combine cornmeal and chili in a shallow bowl.  Set up two more shallow bowls, on with flour and the other with the buttermilk.  Dip onion rings in buttermilk, then dredge in flour and tossing lightly to remove excess.  Dip again in buttermilk and then coat fully with cornmeal mixture.  Place on a cookie sheet and bake until crispy, 15-18 minutes.

    While rings are baking, put turkey in a large mixing bowl, season with salt/pepper, and mix in mustard.  Divide into 4 equal portions and shape each into a burger, making a well in the center.

    Fill each well with 1/4 the bacon and 2 Tb of cheese.  Carefully form burger around the filling, making sure the filling is completely covered.  Return to bacon skillet over medium high heat.  Add patties to hot skillet and cook for 2 minutes on each side, then reduce heat to med-low and cook 5-6 minutes longer, turning occasionally.  Do NOT press down on burgers as they're cooking.

    Serve each burger on a bed of lettuce and topped with a slice of tomato, chopped pickles, and a few onion rings.


    This is from Martha Stewart.

    Everything but milk and water must be at room temperature.

    2 Tb butter, softened
    3 1/2 C flour
    1/2 C water, 100 degrees
    1/2 C sugar
    1/4 C whole milk, 100 degrees
    2 lg eggs, lightly beaten
    3 lg egg yolks, lightly beaten
    2 tsp coarse salt
    2 tsp active dry yeast

    Butter a large bowl and set aside.

    Stir all ingredients in a large bowl until well combined.  Turn onto a lightly floured surface, and knead, adding flour if needed, until smooth and pliable, about 15 minutes.

    Transfer to buttered bowl, brush with a little melted butter and cover loosely with plastic wrap.  Let rise in warm place about 1 1/2 hours until doubled in bulk.

    turn onto floured surface, knead 5 minutes.  Return to bowl.  Brush with a little more melted butter and cover again with plastic.  Let rise another hour, again, until double.

    Oven to 375.  Divide dough into three equal pieces and roll each piece into a ball.  Cover with buttered plastic and let rest 20 minutes.

    Roll each ball to 12 inches long, leaving the centers a little thicker than the ends.  Braid, pulling them as you go.  Tuck ends of braid underneath.  Transfer to buttered baking sheet and cover again with buttered plastic wrap.  Let rise until almost doubled in bulk, about 45 minutes.

    Brush lightly with an egg wash and bake until golden brown and firm, and a thermometer inserted into the bottom reads 180 and comes out clean, about 35-40 minutes.

    If challah browns too quickly, tent with foil.

    Transfer to a wire rack and let cool at least 45 minutes.

    Pita Bread

    3 C white flour
    1 tsp salt
    1 C warm water
    vegetable oil

    Combine flour and salt.  Stir in enough water so the dough pulls from the sides of the bowl and ceases to be sticky.  Stir until smooth then knead for 5 minutes.

    Divide dough into 12 portions and shape into smooth balls.  Cover with damp towels and let rest 10 minutes.

    Press each flat and roll into a 6-7" circle.  Lightly oil a skillet or griddle.  Gently stretch each as thin as possible.  Cook about 90 seconds.  They will be brown, and bubbly spots will appear at the bottom.  turn and brown the other side.

    Wednesday, August 24, 2011


    2-3 pounds of pork loin roast (or whatever slab of mean you want, really)
    1 6-8 oz pack California chile pods
    8 oz corn husks
    8 oz tomato sauce
    1 lg onion

    The night before . . .

    Cook the meat in a crock pot over night with a tiny bit of water, salt, some of the onion and some garlic.

    Wash the chile pods, put in a large pot with a little water, bring to a boil, then turn the heat off.  Leave covered in the water over night.

    Put husks in a large pot or bucket and let them soak in warm water over night.

    In the morning . . .

    Shred the meat.

    De-vein the chile pods.

    Rinse the husks individually through running water.  Stand them, pointy-ends up, back in the bucket or pan in which they were soaking.

    Make the sauce - put chiles in a blender with 1/4 onion, tomato sauce, garlic, and salt.  Blend, then press it through a fine strainer.  It will be thick.  If it's too thick, at a little bit of water.

    Once strained, bring it to a boil in a sauce pan.  Once boiling, add the shredded meat, turn the heat off, and set it aside.

    3 1/2 pounds masa* (makes about 48 tamales)
    1/2 pound lard** (Yes, lard.  Get the good stuff and get over it.)
    1 Tb baking powder
    2 C water
    4 tsp salt

    Combine water and salt in a sauce pan and heat until it's very warm

    Mix masa with 2Tb to 1/4C of warm salty water with hands until well mixed and sticks together but not sticky to touch.

    Cream the lard and baking powder until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes.

    Combine masa with lard and beat another 3 minutes.

    Spread masa onto corn husk (pointy end away from you and smooth side up).  Add a small amount of meat up the center.  Roll from the sides and fold the bottom pointy end up.

    Place in a steamer in a standing position.  Steam 1 1/2 - 2 hours over medium high heat.  Tamales are done when the masa does not stick to the husk when opened.

    *"Masa para tamales sin preparar" from the local Mexican market.

    **If you don't have access to your own lard, get the fresh packed lard from the local Mexican market too.

    Friday, August 19, 2011

    Mexican Meatball Soup

    2 tsp oil
    1 lg onion, choped
    3 garlic cloves minced

    5 C chicken broth
    1 14 1/2 oz can stewed tomatoes
    1/2 C long grain white rice

    3/4 lb ground beef
    1/4 C seasoned dry bread crumbs
    1/4 C cheddar, shredded
    1 egg, lightly beaten
    1 jalapeno, seeded and minced
    1/2 tsp cumin

    1 C white shoe peg corn
    1/2 C chipotle salsa (use whatever is on hand)

    1/3 C cilantro, chopped
    6 lime wedges

    In a Dutch oven, saute first group until soft.  Transfer half the mixture to a medium bowl and set aside.

    Add next group and bring to boil.  Reduce and simmer, covered until rice is tender, about 20 minutes.

    Meanwhile, add next group of ingredients into the onions previously set aside.  Make 24 meatballs.

    Stir corn and salsa into Dutch oven.  Carefully drop in meatballs.  Cover and simmer 20 minutes until meatballs are cooked through.

    Stir in cilantro and serve with lime wedges.

    Olive Garden Minestrone

    Makes 8 1 1/2 C servings.

    3 Tb evoo
    1 C white onion, minced
    1/4 C celery, minced
    4 tsp garlic, minced

    4 C vegetable broth (or chicken if that's what you have)
    1/2 C zucchini, chopped
    1/2 C carrot, shredded
    1/2 C green beans, frozen, cut

    2 15oz cans red kidney beans, drained
    2 15oz cans small white beans, drained
    1 14oz can diced tomatoes

    2 Tb parsley, minced
    1 1/2 tsp oregano
    1 1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp pepper
    1/2 tsp basil
    1/4 tsp thyme
    3 C hot water (or V8 if you have it)
    1/2 C red wine

    4 C spinach
    1/2 C small shell pasta

    Heat oil and saute first group for 5 minutes.

    Add next group, bring to boil, then reduce and simmer for 20 minutes.

    Add spinach and pasta and cook another 20 minutes.

    Hunter's Minestrone

    2 qts chicken stock
    1 head garlic, halved

    1/2 lb sm rigatoni, cooked slightly under done

    1/4 C evoo
    8 sage leaves
    1 sprig fresh rosemary
    1 sprig fresh thyme

    1 lb loose, sweet Italian pork sausage

    2 med carrots, chopped
    2 celery ribs, chopped
    1 onion, chopped

    28 oz can crushed plum tomatoes
    1 bay leaf
    28 oz can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
    1/2 bunch fresh parsley, minced

    Stock and garlic in big saucepan.  Simmer 15 minutes then remove garlic.

    evoo in large saucepan to get warm.  Add sage, rosemary, and thyme

    Add sausage and brown, breaking it up.

    Add carrots, celery, and onion, cook a few minutes until soft.

    Stir in crushed tomatoes, bay leaf, cannellini beans, and stock.  Bring to simmer and cook 15 minutes.

    Add pasta and parsley.  Salt and pepper to taste.  Discard bay leaf and herb sprigs.

    Cream of Broccoli Soup Without Cream

    1 1/2 lbs broccoli florets
    1 lg onion, chopped
    2 lg potatoes, peeled and sliced
    4 C vegetable broth
    1 bunch chives, minced
    1 tsp lemon zest


    In a pot bring first group of ingredients to a boil over med-high heat.

    Cover, reduce to med-low, and simmer until potatoes are tender, about 20 minutes.

    Puree with an immersion blender.

    Return to pot, season, serve.

    Beef Brisket

    oven to 400.

    oil a broiler pan rack
    place brisket fat-side up
    sprinkle lipton soup mix over the top

    disolve 2 beef boullion cubes in 1/2 C of hot water
    add 1/2 C cold water after disolved
    pour into bottom of pan

    cover tight with foil

    400 degrees for 15 min, then
    250 degrees for 3 hours

    cool, slice thin, then reheat in own juice

    Cottage Pie

    From Eating Royally.
    Serves 4.

    Beef Base
    2 Tb oil
    2 sm yellow onions, chopped fine

    1 1/2 lbs ground beef

    1/3 C flour
    1-2 tsp thyme
    2 1/2 C water
    1 Tb Kitchen Bouquet
    2 beef bouillon cubes
    1 Tb Worcestershire

    Potato Topping
    2 1/2 lbs potatoes

    1/2 stick butter
    2 tsp salt
    1/4 C heavy cream
    1 egg yolk

    1 C cheddar cheese, grated

    Oven to 350.

    Saute oil/onions until soft.  add beef and saute until no more pink remains..  Gradually stir in next group of ingredients.  Reduce heat and simmer 30-45 minutes until sauce is thickened.  Transfer with a slotted spoon to a 3-qt baking dish.

    Cook potatoes and drain when tender.  Return to pot over low heat for a minute or two to dry them.  Mash.

    Add next group of ingredients and mix well.  Pipe (wide star tube) or spoon (then fluff with a fork) potatoes over beef.

    Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 20-30 minutes until potatoes are golden and the pie is heated through.

    This can be made a day ahead and stored in the refrigerator, covered with plastic.

    Middle Eastern Chicken Pot

    I think this is a Racael Ray recipe.

    1/4 C evoo
    1 1/2 lbs boneless, skinless chicken thighs, chopped into bit-size pieces

    1 onion, sliced thin
    3 cloves garlic, chopped
    1 C carrots, shredded
    1 bay leaf
    1 tsp paprika
    1 tsp cumin
    1 tsp coriander

    3/4 C dried fruits, chopped- single, or combined (figs, dates, apricots)
    1 lemon  zest
    3/4 C pitten mixed olives, chopped
    2 1/2 C chicken stock

    juice of 1 lemon

    2 Tb butter
    3 Tb pine nuts
    1/4 C almonds, slivered or sliced
    1 1/2 C chicken stock
    1 1/2 C couscous
    handful flat-leaf parsley, chopped

    Heat evoo and brown chicken 3-4 min on each side.  Add next group of ingredients and cook 5-6 minutes.

    Stir in next group, reduce to low, and simmer 10 minutes.

    Sprinkle with lemon juice and remove bay leaf.

    While chicken simmers, melt butter in sauce pot over med heat.  Add nuts and toast for a few minutes.  Add stock and brink to a boil.  Stir in couscous.  Cover and let stand (off heat) 5 minutes.

    Honey Mustard Glazed Pork w/Tropical Fruit Salsa

    1 Tb lime juice
    1 Tb evoo
    1 Tb honey
    1 tsp cumin
    1 tsp dijon mustard
    1 tsp hot red pepper sauce

    2 10oz pork tenderloins (fillets)

    1 C pineapple, diced
    1 C mango, diced
    1 avocado, diced
    1 med tomato, seeded, diced
    2 scallions, sliced thin
    2 Tb cilantro, chopped
    2 Tb lime juice

    In a ziploc bag combine first group of ingredients.  Add pork, seal bag, and refrigerate for an hour, turning twice.

    Mix the remaining ingredients, cover, and refrigerate.

    Preheat large skillet over medium.  Cook pork 16-20 minutes turning ever 5 minutes until browned and glazed and internal temp hits 150.

    Let rest 5 minutes then cut in thin, diagonal slices.  Serve with salsa.

    Fran's Chicken Curry

    5 Tb butter
    1 apple, peeled, cored, sliced thin
    3 small onions, chopped

    1 can grated coconut
    1 C evaporated milk

    2-2 1/2 pounds chicken pieces

    1 can chicken soup
    1 can tomato soup
    3 Tb (heaping) curry powder

    3/4 C seedless raisins
    3 Tb chutney

    2 Tb soft butter
    2 Tb flour

    9 oz can pineapple, cut up

    Put first group in a frying pan and cook about 6 minutes until soft.
    Soak coconut in milk.
    Rinse and dry chicken pieces.
    Add to frying pan and brown all sides, about 15 minutes
    Add next group to frying pan along with coconut mixture and simmer 20-30 minutes.
    Mix butter and flour together and add to pan to thicken the sauce.  Simmer 5 minutes.
    Add pineapple, let come to a boil and serve over lots of rice.


    3 C hard whole wheat flour
    1 tsp salt
    1 1/2 C warm water

    Optional toppings may include: Parmesan, cayenne, salt, sesame seeds, etc.

    Put flour and salt in processor and process for 10 seconds.  Add water in a steady stream and process another 10 seconds.  Dough should form a large ball.  If it's very sticky add 3-4 Tb more flour and process until a ball forms.  If dry and floury, add 2-3 Tb more water and process until a ball forms.

    Knead for 30 second, cover with plastic wrap and lest rest 30 minutes.

    Oven to 500.

    Divide dough into 8 pieces.  Work one at a time, leaving the rest covered.  On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough with hands and then roller to very thin.  Sprinkle toppings as desired.  Slice into crackers and move to a baking sheet.  Spray lightly with water and place in oven.

    Work the next piece of dough while watching the batch in the oven.   Check on them at 2-3 minutes.  As soon as thin spots turn brown, remove them from the oven.  Oven removal too early is better than too late.

    Yogurt Dough Crackers

    1 C plain yogurt
    1 C butter, softened.

    3 1/2 C wheat flour, fresh ground
    2 tsp salt

    Cream yogurt and butter.  Mix in flour and salt.  Cover and let sit in a warm spot for12-24 hours.

    Oven to 400.

    On a floured surface, roll very thin.  Cut into strips, then squares.  Place on ungreased baking sheet and prick with a fork.  Bake about 8 minutes until browned slightly on the edges.  (Check them every 2 minutes.)  Cool before serving.

    Bread Machine Bagels

    From Allrecipes.com

    1 C warm water (110 deg.)
    1 1/2 tsp salt
    2 Tb sugar
    3 C flour
    2 1/4 tsp active dry yeast

    3 quarts boiling water
    3 Tb sugar

    3 Tb cornmeal
    1 egg white

    Load first group of ingredients into bread machine and run a dough cycle.

    Once complete let dough rest on a lightly floured surface.

    Bring 3 qts water to a boil.  Stir in sugar.

    Cut dough in 9 equal pieces.  Roll each into a small ball.  Flatten a little and poke a hold in the center with your thumb.  Twirl on your finger to enlarge the hole and even out the dough.  Let rest of 10 minutes.

    Oven to 375.

    Sprinkle baking sheet with cornmeal.  Move bagels to boiling water, boil for 1 minute, turning half way through.  Drain briefly and arrange on baking sheet.

    Glaze tops with egg white and sprinkle with toppings of your choice.

    Bake for 20-25 minutes until well browned.

    Trail Mix Bars

    Makes 8 bars.

    4 Tb butter
    3 Tb honey

    1 1/3 C quick cooking oats
    1/2 C light brown sugar
    3/4 C Cheerios
    1/4 C dr cranberries
    1/4 C salted peanuts or pumpkin seeds
    1/4 C chocolate chips
    1/4 C sunflower seeds
    1/4 tsp salt

    Oven to 325.  Line an 8-inch square pan with parchment and lightly grease.

    Heat butter and honey together until they melt and combine.  Set aside to cool

    Stir remaining ingredients together.  Add cooled butter/honey mixture and mix well.

    Transfer to pan and press down firmly.

    Bake 30 minutes, cool for 15.  Then cut 8 bars with a sharp knife.  Allow to cool completely before removing from pan.

    Chicken Wreath

    1/2 C red pepper, chopped
    leftover broccoli, chopped
    1/2 onion, chopped
    2/3 C cream of chicken soup (I know, ew.  Sorry!)
    4 oz shredded cheese (cheddar, jack)
    leftover chicken, chopped or shredded

    2 cans crescent rolls

    Oven to 350.

    Combine first group of ingredients.

    Arrange crescent triangles in a circle on a baking stone with bases overlapping in the center and points to the outside.  Scoop filling onto widest portion of each crescent.  Fold points of triangles over filling and tuck under the base at the center.  (Filling will not be completely covered.)

    Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

    Turkey Cranberry Wreath

    1/3 C mayo
    2 T dijon honey mustard
    1/2 tsp pepper
    2 C cooked turkey, chopped
    1/2 C celery, chopped

    3 T parsley
    1/2 C dried cranberries
    4 oz swiss cheese, shredded
    1/4 C walnuts, chopped

    2 cans crescent rolls

    Oven to 350.

    Combine first group of ingredients.

    Arrange crescent triangles in a circle on a baking stone with bases overlapping in the center and points to the outside.  Scoop filling onto widest portion of each crescent.  Fold points of triangles over filling and tuck under the base at the center.  (Filling will not be completely covered.)

    Bake 25-30 minutes or until golden brown.

    Thursday, August 18, 2011

    Turkey Meatball and Orzo Soup

    This is a Rachel Ray.

    1/2 pound ground turkey
    3 Tb Parm-Reg or Romano cheese
    3 Tb bread crumbs
    1 egg
    1 garlic clove, crushed
    2 Tb flat leaf parsley, chopped

    1 Tb evoo
    1/2 small onion, finely chopped
    1 carrot, peeled and grated or finely chopped

    4 C chicken stock

    1/2 C orzo

    Make tiny meatballs with the first group.  Bake in oven.

    Heat next group in a pot over medium heat.  Add stock and bring to boil.  Once broth is boiling, drop meatballs into broth.  Stir in orzo and cook 5 minutes.

    Spicy Tortilla Soup

    2 Tb cumin
    2 tsp paprika
    2 tsp chili powder
    1/2 tsp garlic powder
    1/2 tsp onion powder
    1/2 tsp oregano
    1 tsp coriander
    1 1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp pepper

    3 Tb oil
    1 large onion, diced
    1 red bell pepper, diced
    1 green bell pepper, diced

    3 cloves garlic, minced

    4 oz diced green chilies, drained
    2 10-oz cans RoTel with lime and cilantro
    15 oz can non gmo whole kernel corn
    8 C broth

    2 15oz cans black beans, drained and rinsed
    lime juice

    In a small bowl mix first group, set aside.

    In a large pot saute second group.

    Add third group.

    When heated through, add beans and lime juice.

    Garnish with: tortilla chips, shredded cheese, diced avocado, cilantro, sour cream, hot sauce . . .

    Lasagna Soup

    Serves 8

    1 tsp evoo
    1 1/2 lbs Italian sausage
    3 C onions, chopped

    4 cloves garlic, minced

    2 tsp dried oregano
    1/2 tsp red pepper flakes, crushed
    2 Tb tomato paste

    28 oz roasted diced tomatoes
    2 bay leaves
    6 C chicken stock

    8 oz mafalda or fusilli pasta
    1/2 C basil leaves, finely chopped

    8 oz ricotta
    1/2 C parmesan, grated

    2 C shredded mozzarella cheese

    Heat evoo and brown sausage in it for about 5 minutes.  Add onions, 5 minutes.

    Add garlic, oregano, red pepper, cook 1 minute.

    Add paste, stir well, and cook 3-4 minutes.

    Add tomatoes, bay leaves, stock, stir to combine, bring to boil and reduce to simmer for 30 minutes.

    Add uncooked pasta and cook until al dente.  Stir in basil and season to taste.

    While pasta is cooking combine ricotta, Parmesan and salt.

    Put a dollop of cheese mixture in each bowl and sprinkle mozzarella next.  Ladle soup over the cheese.

    Potato Soup

    Saute until onions are clear:

    half stick butter
    onion, chopped
    carrots, chopped
    celery, diced

    Throw in:

    potatoes, peeled and chopped

    Cover with water and cook 20 minutes or so until potatoes are tender.  Add salt and pepper.

    Use a stick blender to mush up the soup about 2/3 of the way.

    Add some half and half, heavy cream, or milk, whatever you have.

    Add shredded cheddar cheese.

    Serve with fresh, chopped cilantro and hot sauce.

    Mushroom Bisque

    Serves 4-6

    2 Tb butter
    1 C yellow onion, diced
    1/2 C leeks, sliced thin (white and pale green)

    4 C white mushrooms, sliced thin
    2 C brown mushrooms (cremini), sliced thin
    1/2 C shitake mushroom caps, sliced thin
    1 tsp thyme

    6 C chicken broth
    1/2 C heavy cream

    In a large sauce pan, sautee first three ingredients, 5-8 minutes until soft.

    Add mushrooms and thyme over medium heat about 5 minutes until mushrooms give liquid and begin to soften.

    Add broth, cover and bring to simmer.  Lower heat and cook 40-50 minutes until mushrooms are very tender.

    Remove from heat and let sit 10 minutes.

    Add cream, salt, and pepper.  Puree with a stick blender to a coarse puree.  (Small bits of mushroom are good.)

    Heather's Subs

    1 loaf feeds 5 people

    1/4 pound each:

    ham (honey or black forest
    turkey pastrami
    hard salami
    provolone cheese

    Slice bread length wise.  Drizzle with evoo and red wine vinegar.

    Sprinkle with garlic powder and oregano.

    Layer shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes, and the meat & cheese.

    Black Bean Spread

    This was from Martha.

    15 oz can black beans drained
    3 Tb onion, chunked
    1/2 jalapeno, seeded and chunked
    1/2 garlic clove, chopped
    1/8 tsp red pepper flakes

    Whirl all in a processor or blender.  Add water 1 tsp at a time to desired consistency.  Transfer to a bowl and stir in some fresh cilantro if you have it.

    Tea Sandwich Combinations

    roast beef with caramelized onions and horseradish cream cheese

    smoked turkey and avocado with black bean spread

    shrimp salad and sprouts

    bacon and egg salad

    mozzarella and prosciutto with pesto butter

    carrots with herbed cream cheese

    smoked salmon and dill with lemon caper butter

    curried chicken salad and spinach

    Asian Cream Cheese Spread

    3 scallions, full, finely sliced
    1/4 seedless cucumber, finely chopped
    1 Tb soy sauce or tamari
    6 oz cream cheese

    Mix well and spread on crackers, veggies, etc.

    Veggie Cream Cheese Spread

    1/2 C shredded carrots
    1 celery rib, chopped fine
    3 Tb olives with pimiento, chopped fine
    2 scallions, full, chopped fine
    8 oz cream cheese at room temperature

    Combine well.  Spread on crackers, veggies, etc.

    Tuna Salad Pinwheels

    pea-sized squirt of wasabi paste
    2 Tb soy sauce
    1 Tb oil

    2 full scallions, chopped
    6 oz water packed tuna, drained and flaked

    10-12 inch whole wheat tortillas
    1 C fresh spinach

    Mix first 3 ingredients.  Add next two ingredients.

    Heat skillet on high and blister/soften tortillas for 30 seconds per side.  Let cool for a minute.

    Spread each tortilla with a layer of tuna salad and then cover evenly with spinach.

    Roll up and slice.

    Veggie Bruchetta

    1 whole wheat baguette, halved lengthwise
    2 Tb evoo

    6 plum tomatoes, seeded and chopped
    5 fresh basil leaves, sliced fine
    1 red or green bell pepper, seeded and chopped
    1/2 zucchini, dices
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    3 Tb evoo

    1/2 C grated Romano

    Drizzle baguette with 2 Tb evoo and sprinkle with salt/pepper.  Bake 10 minutes at 350.

    Combine second group of ingredients.

    Slice each piece of bread into 5 or 6 sections and top with veggies.

    Jan's Italian Spaghetti Sauce

    This recipe was originally found at this blog.

    1 onion, chopped into large chunks

    3 cloves garlic, chopped fine
    1# ground beef

    2 lg cans tomato puree
    1 can tomato paste

    4 Tb ground oregano
    2 Tb ground basil
    3 bay leaves
    1 pkg Italian spicy sausage

    Brown onion in evoo in a large pot.

    Add garlic and ground beef and brown a bit.

    Add sauces and 4 large cans of water.  (OK, here's where I become deviant.  I use the little cans.)

    Add the spices and the sausage.

    Stir well and cook all day leaving lid slightly ajar.  Stir now and then.

    Negative Calorie Soup

    This MAY - help rid excess body water.  Can substitute a bowl for a meal or two per day MAY aid in loosing fat.  POSSIBLE toxin cleaner.

    2 lg carrots, peeled, chopped
    2 C cauliflower, cut small
    2 C broccoli, cut small
    2 leeks, sliced
    1 head green cabbage, sliced to 1" pieces
    1 lg onion, peeled and sliced
    2 stalks celery, sliced
    1 green pepper, diced
    2 zucchini, peeled and cubed
    4 C vegetable stock
    1 bay leaf
    2 Tb dried thyme
    salt and pepper to taste

    Combine everything and bring to boil.  Add water if needed to cover.  Reduce and simmer for 1 hour.  Can puree at this point if you want.

    WW Garden Vegetable Soup

    Serves 4

    2/3 C carrots, sliced
    1/2 C onion, diced
    2 garlic cloves, minced

    3 C broth
    1 1/2 C green cabbage, diced
    1/2 C green beans
    1 Tb tomato paste
    1/2 tsp dried basil
    1/4 tsp dried oregano
    1/4 tsp salt

    1/2 C zucchini, diced

    Saute first group in a little olive oil, about 5 min.

    Add next group of ingredients, simmer, covered, about 15 minutes

    Stir in zucchini and heat 3-4 minutes.


    This recipe is from Pioneer Woman.  Please see the original here.

    1 1/2 # ground beef
    1 # hot breakfast sausage
    2 cloves garlic, minced

    2 cans (14.5 oz) whole tomatoes
    2 cans (6 oz) tomato paste
    2 Tb dried parsley
    2 Tb dried basil
    1 tsp salt

    3 C lowfat cottage cheese
    2 whole beaten eggs
    1/2 C grated Parmesan cheese
    2 Tb dried parsley
    1 tsp salt

    1 # sliced Mozzarella cheese

    1 package (10 oz) lasagna noodles

    Bring large pot of water to boil.

    In large pan combine first group and brown.  Drain half the fat.

    Add next group  of ingredients and simmer 45 minutes.

    In medium bowl, combine next group of ingredients.

    Cook noodles to 'al dente'.

    Assemble - arrange 4 cooked noodles in bottom of a baking pan, overlapping if necessary.  Spoon half cottage cheese mixture over the noodles.  Spread evenly.  Cover with a layer of mozzarella.  Spoon a little less than half of meat/sauce mixture over top.

    Repeat, ending with meat/sauce mixture.  Sprinkle top generously with Parmesan.

    Freeze, refrigerate (up to 2 days) or bake immediately at 350 for 20-30 minutes.


    4# saurkraut
    3# beef/pork
    2# white cabbage

    Rinse and drain the saurkraut.  Then in 1.5 inches of water in a large pot.  Bring to boil, covered, then reduce heat and crack the lid.

    Cook and chop the meat, add to large pot.

    Chop cabbage and put in hot water to 1" below top of cabbage.  When boils, cover and cook 1/2 hour to 45 minutes.

    Cook kielbasa and add to large pot.

    Fry onion and add to saurkraut.

    Two boullion cubes, pepper, and ketchup to large pot.

    When cabbage is done, combine everything and cook an additional 15 minutes.

    Curried Red Lentils

    Serves 4

    1 C red lentils

    1 C onions, diced
    1 1/2 tsp oil

    1 Tb curry paste
    1/2 tsp each:
    chili powder
    minced garlic
    fresh ginger

    8oz tomato puree

    Rinse lentils.  Add enough water just to cover and simmer until lentils are tender, about 30 minutes, adding water if needed.

    Carmelize onions in oil in a large skillet.

    Combine next group of ingredients in a bowl, mix well.

    When onions are cooked, add curry mixture and cook on high 1-2 minutes, stirring.

    Stir in puree and reduce to simmer.  Cook until elntils are ready.

    When lentils are tender, drain excess liquid and add the lentils to curry mixture.  Combine and serve.

    Wednesday, August 17, 2011

    Fran's Butternut Squash Bisque

    2 1/2 lbs buttternut squash, peele dand cut into 1" cubes
    3 sweet apples, peeled, seeded and quartered

    3 C chicken stock

    1/2 C dry white wine
    1 stick butter
    1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
    1/4 tsp ground nutmeg
    1/4 tsp ground ginger
    1/8 tsp hot chili flakes

    fresh chives, minced
    sour cream

    Oven to 400.

    Toss squash with evoo, salt, and pepper.  Place on a baking tray with apples and bake 20 minutes or until tender when pierced.  Once done, blend until smooth.

    Pour into a 3-4 qt pot.

    Add next group of ingredients and bring to a simmer over med/high heat.  Reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes.

    Salt/pepper to taste.

    Serve with a dollop of sour cream and a sprinkling of chives.

    Onion Soup

    2 onions, chopped
    1/4 C butter

    2 Tb flour
    21 oz beef broth
    2 1/2 C water

    6 slices french bread

    1/2 Parmesan cheese, grated
    1/2 C Swiss cheese, shredded

    Saute butter and onions about 20 minutes.

    Stir in flour, broth, and water.  Boil then reduce to simmer for 20 minutes.

    Oven to 425.

    Toast bread slices and place into bowls.

    Pour soup over the top.  Sprinkle with cheese and bake for 10 minutes

    Ed's Onion Soup

    6-8 med servings.

    4 lg onions, sweet, like Wala Wala, chopped
    2 Tb butter/evoo

    2 Tb flour
    4 C water
    2 veggie bouillon cubes
    thyme, dash
    2 bay leaves

    2/3 C white wine
    french bread, sliced

    Saute butter and onions, cook on low/med about 10-12 minutes.

    Sprinkle with flour and add next group of ingredients.

    Boil, then reduce to simmer 20 minutes.

    Turn off heat, add wine.

    Pour into bowls and top with bread and cheese.  Put under broiler and watch closely until toasted.

    New England Clam Chowder

    Serves 8

    4 T butter
    4 celery ribs, chopped
    1/4 C onion, shoped

    4 C chicken broth
    16 oz clam juice
    20 oz clams, canned, drained
    4 med potatoes, cubed
    16 oz corn, fresh or frozen
    1 tsp celery salt
    1 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp garlic powder

    2 C heavy whipping cream
    4 Tb flour

    Saute first group together, about 3 minutes.

    Add next group to pot, simmer over medium heat about 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

    Whisk cream and flour together, stir into soup.

    Simmer, stirring frequently until soup thickens.

    Salt/pepper to taste.

    Jo Ann's Chicken Enchilada Soup

    4-6 boneless/skinless chicken breasts

    6 Tb garlic oil
    1 onion, diced
    1 clove garlic, diced

    1 1/2 C flour
    1 tsp herbamare
    2 tsp paprika

    2 pts sour cream
    1/4 tsp cumin
    4 oz chopped green chiles

    Cook chicken in 12-16 C water or broth until done.  Shred and reserve broth.

    In large saute pan combine oil, onion, and garlic.  Gradually add flour, herbamare, and paprika to make a white sauce.  (If too think add a little broth and stir.)  Add remaining broth and sour cream, stir well.  Add remaining ingredients and mix well.  Cook until heated through and serve with tortilla chips, grated cheese, green onions, picante sauce, etc.

    Tuesday, August 16, 2011

    Tomato-Basil Soup

    4 C (8-10) fresh tomatoes, cored, peeled and chopped, or canned crushed tomatoes
    4 C tomato juice or mix of veg/chicken stock

    12-14 basil leaves, washed

    1 C heavy cream
    1 stick butter

    Combine tomatoes and stock in saucepan, simmer 30 minutes.

    Remove from heat, add basil, and puree.

    Stir in cream, butter, salt/pepper.

    Garnish with Parmesan.

    *By the way, a 6 lb, 10oz can of tomato puree is perfect for tripling this recipe.  Just fill it once to measure the stock too.

    Ziti with Chard

    1 pound ziti

    1 large bunch chard, washed, stemmed, chopped
    4 cloves garlic, minced
    1/2 C evoo

    handful freshly grated Parmesan
    2 chopped fresh tomatoes
    1/2 fresh lemon juice

    Cook ziti.

    In the meantime, cook next group of ingredients - use lots of black pepper.

    Mix with pasta when both are done and toss with last 3 ingredients.

    Fran's Chicken Spaghetti

    Brown some chicken in olive oil with salt/pepper.

    While on side one, slice an onion, bell pepper, a press of garlic, and add to pot after turning to side two.

    (If your doing this in the crock pot, transfer chicken, etc to pot now and continue.)

    Add . . .
    one huge or 2 regular cans of tomato sauce
    1 small can of paste
    1 regular can stewed tomatoes
    an even sprinkling of Italian seasonings (not a solid coat)
    1/4 C sugar (eyeball it)
    1 C white wine

    Simmer 1-2 hours, serve over angel hair.

    Vegetables, Macaroni, & Cheese

    Serves 6-8

    1/4 C butter
    2 green onion, sliced

    3 Tb whole wheat flour

    2 C milk

    1/4 C parsley, chopped

    1 C cottage cheese
    4 C macaroni, cooked
    3 C vegetables, chopped and cooked
    1 C cheddar or Swiss, grated
    1 C whole grain bread crumbs

    Oven to 350.

    Saute onions in butter.  Blend in flour and cook a few minutes, stirring constantly.  Slowly add milk, then cottage cheese and seasonings.  Cook until thickens.

    Combine noodles, veggies, and sauce.  Pour into greased 2 1/2 quart dish.  Top with cheese and bread crumbs.  Bake until hot and bubbly, about 15-20 minutes.

    Pasta and Bean Chili

    2 Tb oil
    1 med onion, chopped
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1/2 green bell pepper, choped

    3 C vegetable stock or water
    6 oz tomato paste
    15 oz chick peas, (drain and rinse if using canned)
    16 oz kidney beans (ditto)

    1/2 C elbow macaroni, cooked

    Saute' first group.

    Add next group, cook 10 minutes.  Add pasta and heat through.

    Garnish w/Parmesean

    Good for the crock pot too!

    Cold Ginger, Soy, and Honey Sesame Noodles

    2 Tb smooth peanut butter
    2 Tb honey
    4 Tb soy sauce
    2 tsp sesame oil (or whatever!)
    2 tsp ground or 1" fresh ginger, grated

    1 lb whole wheat spaghetti, cooked and cooled
    3 Tb toasted sesame seeds
    a ton of spinach, chopped and sauteed

    Heat peanut butter to melty gooey.  Add in rest of group one ingredients.

    Mix group two together, pour sauce over and mix well.  Good warm or cold

    Baked Penne w/ Roasted Vegetables

    1 red pepper
    2 zuccini
    2 yellow crook-necks quash
    mremini mushrooms
    1 purple onion
    salt, pepper, herbs de Provence

    1 lb penne pasta
    3 C tomato sauce
    1 C fontina cheese, grated
    1/2 C mozzarella, grated
    frozen peas
    greated parmesean

    Oven to 450.

    Cut up veggies all to same size so the cook evenly and place on baking sheet

    Sprinkle with evoo, salt, pepper, and herbs de Provence.  Toss to coat.  Bake for 15 minutes.

    Meanwhile cook pasta for 6 minutes only.

    In very large bowl, gently mix everything together.

    Pour into greased 9x13 pan and top with grated Parmesan and butter pieces.

    Bake for 25 minutes.

    Perked Up Pasta Salad

    2/3 C Italian dressing
    1/3 C creamy spread mustard
    3 C rotini, cooked
    2 C cut up, blanched veggies (broccoli, carrots, zucchini, red onion, etc)
    2 Tb minced basil

    Combine all, chill.

    Francy's Curried Chicken and Pasta Salad

    16 oz pasta (bow ties, whatever), cooked

    1 lb cooked chicken, chopped
    1 C celery, chopped small
    1 1/2 C grapes, halved
    1/2 C shredded carrots
    1/3 C slivered almonds

    8 oz plain yogurt
    3/4 C mayo
    2 tsp curry powder
    1 Tb lemon juice
    1/2 tsp salt

    Toss together first group of ingredients.

    Mix together second group and pour over first.

    Mix and chill well.

    Sunday, August 14, 2011

    Chicken Tikka Masala


    Chicken Tikka:
    1 cup plain yogurt
    1 tbsp lemon juice
    2 tsp cumin
    1/4-1 tsp cayenne (depending on how spicy you like it)
    1 tsp cinnamon
    1 tsp pepper
    1 tsp salt

    6-8 chicken thighs (skin on, bone-in)

    Stir all ingredients except chicken into the bottom of a large plastic container. Add the chicken and coat the chicken completely with the marinade, cover and place in the fridge for at least an hour or overnight.

    1 can 28 oz. diced tomatoes
    1 can 5.5 oz tomato paste
    2 inches fresh ginger, grated (store your ginger in the freezer and it will be super easy to grate)
    2 garlic cloves, minced
    1 onion, diced
    1 tbsp garam masala
    1 tbsp tikka paste (could use mild curry paste instead, but then also add about a tbsp of lemon juice)
    1 tsp cumin
    1 tsp chili powder
    1 tsp dried coriander

    1/2 tsp cumin
    1/2 tsp chili powder
    1/2 tsp garam masala
    1 cup cream
    2 tbsp fresh cilantro, chopped

    Turn your oven to broil. Cover a baking sheet with aluminum foil and place a rack over top. Take the chicken out of the marinade and place on the baking rack. Place under the broiler about 6-10 inches from the heating element and broil on each side about 10 minutes. You don't have to worry about cooking the meat all the way through, you are just looking for a nice browned color.

    While the chicken is broiling, in a pan over medium high heat, add about a tsp or two of oil. Add the onion and saute for a few minutes to soften. Add the garlic and ginger and saute for a few more minutes until the mixture is nice and fragrant. Place the mixture into your crockpot. To that, add the diced tomatoes, tomato paste, garam masala, tikka paste, cumin, chili powder and coriander. Stir together. When the chicken is done broiling, add them straight to the slow cooker and stir into the masala (sauce). I have cooked and experimented with this dish quite a few times, and it by far tastes the best when the chicken is first broiled and then slow cooks in the masala sauce. It gives the sauce a real richness of flavor. Slow cook on high for 4-6 hours or on low 6-8 hours.

    Before serving stir in 1/2 tsp cumin, 1/2 tsp chili powder, 1/2 tsp garam masala and salt if it needs it. I find this just brightens up the spice flavors a bit. Then stir in the cream and fresh cilantro. Serve a chicken thigh with lots of sauce over basmati rice or Yellow Basmati Rice: 2 cups basmati, 4 cups water, salt, and 1/2 tbsp of turmeric. Stir together and prepare as you normally would. When the rice is done, stir in 1/2 cup frozen peas.

    Thursday, August 11, 2011

    Raw Hummus

    2 C chickpeas, soaked 24 hours, then sprouted 72 hours

    4 cloves garlic, chopped

    1/2 C tahini
    1/2 tsp sea salt
    2 lemons, juiced
    1 C fresh parsley


    Blend chickpeas and garlic with 1/2 C water in a blender until well mixed.

    Add next group of ingredients and blend.  Adjust consistency with water if needed.

    Drizzle with evoo to serve.

    Veggie Crisps

    From The Complete Book of Raw Foods

    vegetables like sweet potatoes, pumpkin, zucchini, carrots, eggplant, beets, tomato . . .
    sea salt

    Slice veggies thin.  Add salt or seasonings as desired.

    Dehydrate at 115 for 6-12 hours, depending on the thickness of the chips.

    * Can be marinaded before drying.

    Really Veggie Crackers

    From The Complete Book of Raw Foods

    1/2 onion, chopped
    2-5 cloves garlic
    1 head spinach
    1 C fresh herbs (dill, basil, sage, oregano, rosemary, thyme) chopped
    3 tsp salt
    1/4 C lemon juice

    2 zucchini, shredded
    2 carrots, shredded
    2 C flax seeds, soaked 8-12 hours but not drained

    2 C flax seeds, ground

    Puree first group on ingredients together.  Transfer to a bowl and add next 3 ingredients.  Mix well, adding flax meal and 2 or more cups water at the very end.  Batter should be thick, but easy to spread.

    Spread onto Teflex sheets in a dehydrator and dehydrate for 8 hours at 105.

    Flip crackers and remove Teflex sheets.  Continue to dehydrate another 16 hours or until the crackers are crunchy.

    Wednesday, August 10, 2011

    Crispy Baked Chicken

    Chicken pieces

    1 C buttermilk

    8 slices worth of bread crumbs
    1 C Parmesean, grated fine

    Oven to 400.

    Oil a baking dish.

    Mix first group and place in a shallow dish.

    Mix second group and place in a second shallow dish.

    Dip chicken in milk mixture, then coat in bread crumb mixture.  Place in dish with space in between each piece.  Bake 40 minutes or until done.

    Wing Sauces

    Classic Hot Sauce

    6 Tb ketchup
    2-3 Tb hot sauce
    4 Tb butter, melted

    Whisk and pour over wings, toss to coat.

    Honey Mustard Sauce

    1/4 C dijon mustard
    3 Tb butter, melted
    2 Tb honey
    1 tsp vider vinegar

    Whisk and pour over wings, toss to coat.

    Blue Cheese Dip

    1/2 C sour cream
    1 Tb mayonnaise
    1/2 tsp hot sauce
    1/4 tsp salt
    1/3 C crumbled blue cheese

    Mix first 4 ingredients.  Add blue cheese.  Chill, covered, until ready to serve.

    Buffalo Wings

    2 pounds chicken wings

    2 Tb butter, melted
    2-3 Tb hot pepper sauce
    1 tsp paprika


    1/2 C sour cream
    1/2 C mayonaise
    1/2 C crumbled blue cheese
    1 clove garlic, minced
    1 Tb white wine vinegar or white vinegar

    Preheat broiler, place chicken pieces in a shallow baking dish.

    Mix butter, pepper sauce and paprika.  Pour over wings, stirring to coat.  Cover and let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes.

    Drain chicken, reserving sauce.  Place on unheated rack of a broiler pan.  Sprinkle with salt/pepper and brush with some of the reserved sauce.

    Broil 4-5 inches from heat about 10 minutes until light brown.  Turn, brush again, and broil for 10-15 minutes until chicken is cooked through.

    Meanwhile, blend remaining ingredients together until smooth.

    Serve wings with sauce.

    Garlic Parmesan Chicken Wings

    1/2 C butter
    1 tsp garlic powder
    1/2 tsp onion salt
    1/2 C Parmesan cheese
    24 chicken wings, baked

    Melt butter, whisk into garlic powder, onion salt, and pepper.

    Arrange hot, fresh-baked wings on a serving platter and drizzle with butter mixture.

    Top with Parmesan and enjoy.

    Sirloin Steaks with Mushroom Sauce and Chive-Garlic Potatoes

    4 servings

    4 4-oz boneless sirloin steaks, trimmed
    1 Tb evoo
    8-oz Cremini mushrooms
    1/2 C dry red wine
    1/2 C water
    2 tsp flour

    mashed potatoes
    1/3 C chives
    1/2 tsp garlic powder

    Sprinkle steaks with salt and pepper.  Heat oil in large non-stick skillet over medium high heat.  Reduce to medium.  Add steaks to pan, cook 2 minutes on each side until as done as desired.  Keep warm.

    Add mushrooms to pan, cook 5 minutes or until tender and browning, stirring frequently.  Combine wine, water, flour, salt, and pepper.  Stir with a whisk.  Add wine mixture to pan and bring to a boil.  Cook 2 minutes or until thick, stirring constantly.

    Stir chives and garlic powder into potatoes.

    Place 3/4 C potatoes on each plate.  Top with a steak and about 1/4 C mushroom sauce.

    Tina's London Broil

    Marinade 1

    1/4 C yellow mustart
    1/4 C worcestershire sauce
    1 Tb liquid smoke mesquite
    1/4 C water
    1/4 C evoo
    1 clove garlic, minced

    Mix all ingredients in a large Ziploc bag.  Add meat (no piercing or scoring) and refrigerate overnight (or at least 4 hours), turning each time you open the fridge.

    Pre-heat grill on high for 10-15 minutes.  Pick up meat with tongs and allow marinade to drip back into bag to reduce flair-up.  Place meat on HOT grill and cook each side 4 minutes or so until seared well.  (This helps retain juices in the meat.)  After seared, reduce heat and continue cooking to preferred doneness.  Best medium rare or medium.

    The Boys' Tinfoil Delight

    For each serving ~

    1 hamburger patty (that you've made with Mom)
    1 medium potato, (boys peel, Mom slices)
    2 carrots, (boys peel, Mom slices)
    1/2 sm onion, sliced
    1 garlic clove, squished (If you don't speak, 'Boy', that means pressed)

    Oven to 350.

    Have Mom cut a sheet of foil about 14" long.  Place the patty in the center.  On top put potatoes, carrots and onions.  Sprinkle with salt, pepper and then squish the garlic over it.  Put a little pat of butter on top of the pile of stuff.

    Fold up foil pouch to completely enclose.

    Cook for 1 hour while you set the table, play cars, and then wash up for dinner.

    Italian Loaf Rustica

    1 pound sweet Italian sausage
    1/2 C chopped onion
    2-4 cloves garlic, finely minced

    1 1/2 C flour, divided (1/2, 1)
    1/2 C whole wheat flour
    1/2 C cornmeal
    1 Tb sugar
    1/2 tsp salt
    1 package rapid rise yeast

    1 1/2 C hot water (120-130)
    2 tsp butter

    1/2 pound mozzarella cheese, cubed
    1 7-oz jar roasted red peppers, drained and chopped

    1 large egg, beaten
    2-3 tsp sesame seeds

    Crumble sausage and brown with onion and garlic.  Drain fat and set aside.

    In large bowl, combine 1/2 C flour with the rest of the ingredients in that group.  Stir in water and butter, mix well.  Stir in remaining cup of flour to form a soft dough.  Cover and let rest 10 minutes.

    Grease 9 or 10 inch springform pan.  Stir dough down.  With buttered fingers, press 2/3 dough into bottom of pan.  Add cheese and peppers to sausage mixture, spoon into center of dough.  Spread and press filling towards edge of pan, leaving 1/2" rim of dough at the side.  Drop remaining dough by tablespoons full over filling.  Carefully spread to cover and enclose filling.  (Top will be rough.)

    Cover loosely and let rise in a warm place about 20-30 minutes.

    Oven to 400.  Brush top of dough with beaten egg, sprinkle with sesame seeds. Bake 25-30 minutes or until bread pulls from side of pan and loaf is golden.  Cool 5 minutes.  Loosen loaf from pan, remove side, cut into wedges to serve.

    Paul Newman's Balsamic Chicken

    1 chicken, cut up
    1 bottle Newman's Own Balsamic Dressing (I make my own, don't tell Paul!)
    1 T chopped fresh or 2 tsp dried oregano

    2 garlic cloves, chopped fine (I use a few more)
    3 potatoes, cubed (I cook mine separate)
    5 carrots, sliced (I increase carrots)
    1 onion, sliced

    Combine dressing, oregano, and garlic.  Place in large bowl and marinade the chicken at least one hour.

    Oven to 425.

    Put chicken in roasting pan with half the marinade.  Add potatoes (unless you're going to manage them separately), carrots, and onion.

    Roast for 45 minutes.

    Lauren's Turkey Burgers

    3 pounds ground turkey
    1/4 C seasoned bread crumbs
    1/4 C finely diced onion
    1 egg, beaten
    1/4 C chopped fresh parsley
    1 Tb crushed (mortar and pestle) fresh or home-dried mixed herbs (sage, thyme, oregano, rosemary)
    1 clove garlic, minced

    Mush together, make 10 patties, grill.

    Tuesday, August 9, 2011

    "Pizza" Crackers

    From The Complete Book of Raw Food

    2-3 dried or fresh cayenne or dried Thai devil peppers
    1/2 C or more fresh or dried desert sage, rosemary, tarragon, parsley, or other herbs

    4 C chickpeas, soaked overnight and sprouted for 3-5 days (will triple in volume)
    2 C flax seed or 1C flax seed mixed with 1 C sesame seeds, soaked for 8 hours but not drained
    4 stalks celery, chopped fine (to reduce strings)
    4-5 large red bell peppers, chopped
    1 red onion, chopped
    2 pounds tomatoes, chopped (cherry tomatoes are best)
    3-8 cloves garlic

    1/2 to 1 tsp salt

    Other raw, bland, green veggies, broccoli stalks or zucchini (no strong flavors)

    Grind dried peppers and dried herbs in a coffee grinder (I'm going to try the dry Vitamix pitcher) until powdered.  Move to a blender and add next group of ingredients.  Spread onto Teflex sheets making sure it's at least 1/4" all over.  Dough should fill 6-7 trays.  Dehydrate at 105 for 3-4 hours.

    Turn over and score into squares with a knife.  Dehydrate another 24 hours to desired crispness.

    *No, I'm not seeing what to do with the vague 'other raw, bland, green veggies'.

    Wake Up, Ginger

    From The Complete Book of Raw Food

    2 inch piece ginger
    4 oranges, peeled
    1 C berries

    Blend all into juice and serve immediately.

    Candy Floss Tart

    From The Complete Book of Raw Food
    Serves 1-2

    3 pink grapefruits, peeled
    2 limes, peeled
    2 soft ripe pears
    2 C watermelon

    Combine all and blend until smooth.  Strain for smoother texture.

    Better than V8

    From The Complete Book of Raw Food

    Serves 1-2

    3 sm heads romaine
    1 bunch parsley
    1 small celery head
    1 cucumber
    1/2 bunch radish w/leaves
    2 tomatoes
    1 lemon w/skin
    1-2 garlic cloves
    1/4 tsp cayenne

    Cut everything in half, blend into juice, enjoy.

    Romaine Roll-Ups

    From The Complete Book of Raw Food

    1 lg head romain lettuce

    3 lg tomatoes, finely chopped
    1 avocado, peeled, pitted, finely chopped
    1 hand full alfalfa sprouts
    2 Tb fresh cilantro, finely chopped
    basil, oregano, finely chopped
    onion/garlic finely chopped

    Separate leaves and put on a plate.

    Mix the rest of the ingredients to make filling.  Spoon generously at one end of each lettuce leaf.  Roll sides of leaf over, fold in half.  Continue until you've used all the filling.  Eat like a sandwich.

    Pesto Mushrooms

    1 bunch fresh basil, coarsely choped
    1/2 C lemon juice
    3 lg cloves garlic, pressed
    1 tsp black peppercorns
    2 C walnuts
    3/4 tsp salt
    1/4 C evoo

    20 Crimini mushrooms, stems removed

    Combine first group of ingredients and blend/process to a thick paste.

    Fill mushroom caps.

    Dehydrate on Teflex sheets at 105 for 3 hours.  Main dish or appetizer.

    Crunch Fries with Ketchup

    From the Complete Book of Raw Food

    1 pound jicama, sliced to look like french fries
    2 Tb evoo
    1 TB paprika
    1 Tb onion power
    salt to taste
    1/4 C onion powder

    1/2 C dried Oates, soaked for 2 hours and drained
    1/4 C apple cider vinegar
    1/4 C raisins
    1 Tb salt

    Toss jicima, evoo, paprika, 1 Tb onion powder and salt to taste.

    Blend remaining ingredients and enjoy.

    Abeba and Anna's It's Really Soup!

    10-11 fresh Roma tomoatoes, chopped

    1/2 red or yellow onion, peeled and chopped
    4 cloves garlic, peeles
    fresh basil to taste
    fresh dill to taste
    2 Tb lemon juice
    2 Tb evoo
    1/8-1/4 C raisins
    1-2 red bell peppers
    1/4 jalapeno

    1 C sun dried tomatoes, finely chopped

    1 avocado, cubed
    1 ear corn, cut from cob
    1/2 sweet yellow pepper

    In a blender combine 6 tomatoes with next group of ingredients along with 1/2 C water.  Blend well.

    Add 1/2 C sun-dried tomatoes a little at a time.  Blend well.

    In a large bowl, combine avocado, remaining tomatoes (all), corn, yellow pepper.  Pour blended mixture over chopped vegetables and stir well.

    Wild Rice Salad

    1 1/2 C wild rice, soaked 3-5 days
    1/2 C finely chopped red bell pepper
    1/4 C corn
    1 carrot, shredded
    2 stalks celery, finely chopped
    1/4 red onion, finely chopped
    2 Tb parsley, finely chopped
    1 tomato, diced
    4 Tb evoo
    2 Tb lemon juice

    Combine all, mix well.

    Quinoa Tabouli

    4 C sprouted quinoa (about 2 C before sprouting)
    4 green onions, sliced
    1 lg tomato, seeded and finely diced
    3/4 cucumber, peeled, seeded, and finely diced
    1/4 C parsley, minced
    5 Tb evoo
    4 Tb lemon or lime juice
    salt to taste

    Mix everything and allow to sit before enjoying.

    (Sprouting quinoa, soak for 4-8 hours.  Drain and rinse.  Sprout in a jar another 18 hours or more, rinsing every 8 hours.  Should be firm, not too crunchy, when ready.)

    Orange Spinach Salad

    1 C small orange slices, cut in half
    handful romaine lettuce - bite size pieces
    handful spinach leaves, bit size pieces
    1/2 C green grapes - halved
    1/2 C green onions, chopped
    1 C almonds, chopped

    2/3 C evoo
    1/3 C orange juice
    1/8-1/4 C honey
    1 tsp celery seed
    3 Tb lemon juice
    1 tsp dry mustard

    Combine top group in a big bowl.

    Combine bottom group in a jar and shake well.

    Lentil Salad

    From a Raw Food Cookbook

    3 C lentils, sprouted
    1/2 red onion, minced
    1/2 yellow pepper, minced
    1 Tb orange peel, grated

    1/4 C tahini
    1 lemon, juiced
    Bragg Liquid Aminos or soy sauce to taste

    1/2 bunch parsley, cleaned, stemmed, minced
    1/2 tsp dried thyme

    Combine first group, set aside.

    Combine second group with enough water to make a thin dressing.  Mix in parsley and thyme.

    Pour over salad and enjoy.

    Turkey Thigh and Hominy Chili

    1 onion, chopped
    1 red bell pepper, chopped
    6 garlic cloved, minced
    1 jalapeno chili, minced
    1 Tb chili powder
    1 1/2 tsp dried oregano
    1 1/2 tsp ground cumin

    3 pounds turkey thighs (or chicken if that's what you have)

    15 oz can hominy, rinsed
    28 oz chopped tomatoes

    Optional - shredded jack cheese, sour cream, sliced black olives, sliced green onions

    In a large crock po, mix first 7 ingredients.

    Remove skin from thighs, rinse, and place over veggies in crock pot.  Add salt/pepper, hominy, tomatoes.

    Cover and cook on low until meat pulls from bone.

    Remove meat.  When cool enough to handle, remove from bones and tear into pieces.  Return to crock pot and cook until hot again, 10-15 minutes.

    Spoon into bowls and serve with optional toppings.

    Saffron Rice

    Serves 8 - 10

    4 C bastmati rice
    1 tsp salt
    2 Tb evoo, plus more
    4 Tb butter
    1/4 C water
    1/4 C saffron water (4 tsp saffron, 1 tsp sugar ground in mortar/pestle, then add to 1/2 C hot water to dissolve)

    Place rice in a bowl and add enough water to cover, rinsing well.  Pour off water and rinse like this twice more.  Add salt and enough water to cover.  Let stand for 10-15 minutes.

    Bring a stockpot of water to boil.  Drain rice and add to boiling water.  Drizzle with evoo.  Boil until rice is tender, about 10 minutes.  Drain in a colander.

    Return pot to medium heat, add butter, 2 Tb water, 2 tsp saffron water.  Allow butter to melt.

    Mound rice into pot.  Drizzle with 2 Tb evoo, remaining 2 Tb water and 2 Tb saffron water.  Cover top of pot with a thick kitchen towel and place lid on top.  Cook 10 minutes.  Reduce heat to low, and continue cooking 20 minutes more.  Serve immediately.

    (And I'm pretty sure the cook gets dibs on the tahdig - the crusty, buttery, saffrony layer from the bottom of the pan!)

    Parvin's Cornish Game Hens

    This came from Martha Stewart a zillion years ago.

    Serves 4-8

    1/4 C evoo
    2 lg onions, coarsely chopped
    1 lg head garlic, coarsely chopped

    4 C cilantro, coarsely chopped (about 6 bunches)

    4 Cornish game hens, wing tips removed
    1 tsp ground turmeric

    1 1/2 C water
    juice of 2 limes
    4 tsp saffron water (4 tsp saffron, 1 tsp sugar, 1/2 C hot water, mortar/pestle, combine to dissolve)

    In a deep pot over medium heat cook onions and garlic in oil about 10 minutes.  Stir in cilantro and cook another 10 minutes.

    Season hens generously with salt, pepper, turmeric.  Add to pan and increase heat to high.  Cook until brown on all sides, about 10 minutes.  Add 1 1/2 C water, lime, and saffron water.  Bring to boil, reduce to simmer, and cook covered until juices run clear, 25-35 minutes more.  Serve immediately.

    Red Onion and Cucumber Yogurt Sauce

    Makes about 2 cups.

    1 red onion, cut into 1" thick rounds
    1 cucumber, peeled, seeded, thinly sliced
    2 Tb capers, drained

    1/2 C plain yogurt
    1 Tb evoo
    1 Tb tahini
    1 Tb fresh lemon juice
    1 tsp minced garlic
    1/4 tsp cumin

    1/4 C chopped fresh mint

    Bush onion with some evoo and salt/pepper.  Grill or cook in cast-iron turning once until slices are tender, about 10 minutes.

    When cool enough to handle, chop into 1/2" pieces and place in a bowl with cucumber and capers.  Stir.

    Combine yogurt, evoo, tahini, lemon juice, garlic, cumin in a bowl.  Stir in mind and season w/ salt/pepper.

    Add half sauce to onion mixture, stirring to coat.  Add more if desired.

    Can refrigerate up to 5 days.

    (Good over veggie burgers or fish!)

    Veggie Burgers

    This came from a book, but I can't remember the title!

    1/2 C bulgur

    1 1/2 C walnut pieces
    2 lg garlic cloves, peeled
    1 C packed fresh cilantro leaves

    2 C cooked pinto beans (rinse and drain if canned)
    3 Tb soy sauce
    1 1/2 tsp ground cumin
    1/4 tsp cayenne pepper

    2 lg egg whites

    2 Tb canola oil

    Place bulgur, 1 C water, and salt in saucepan.  Cover, bring to boil, reduce and simmer until water absorbed, 10-15 minutes.  Let cool 10 minutes.

    walnuts, garlic, cilantro in food processor until roughly chopped.

    Add bulgur, pintos, soy sauce, cumin, salt, cayenne, process until finely chopped.

    Add egg whites, process until combined.

    Refrigerate covered until completely cold, 4 hours to over night.  (Do not skip this step!)

    Form into 6 patties (about 1/2C per patty)

    Heat oil in a large skillet (cast iron if you have it) over medium to medium-high heat.  Cook until browned and crisp, 4-6 minutes, turn and cook about 5 minutes until browned and heated through.

    Serve with Red Onion and Cucumber Yogurt Sauce on the side.

    Saag Chicken

    From askpalakkad.com, although at last look, it's no longer there.

    3 pounds chicken pieces, skinned and cubed
    4 Tb oil

    48 oz spinach, washed and chopped
    1/4 C water

    3 Tb oil
    1 inch ginger, minced
    5 cloves garlic, minced
    2 lg onions, minced/finely chopped

    1 can (400g) crushed tomatoes
    1/2 tsp salt
    1/2 tsp cayenne pepper
    1 tsp ground coriander
    1/2 tsp turmeric powder
    2 whole cloves
    2 big cardamom pods (I skip this)
    1 Tb water

    4 Tb milk

    2 Tb butter

    1 tsp garam masala

    Fry chicken in 4 Tb oil 3-4 minutes until lightly browned, set aside.

    Put spinach in a pot with 1/4C water.  Bring to boil and remove from heat.

    When cool, grind in a blender and set aside.

    Heat remaining oil in a pan and add ginger, garlic, and onions.  Fry until lightly brown.

    Add tomatoes, salt, cayenne, coriander, turmeric, cloves, cardamom, sprinkle with 1 Tb water.  Cook 10 minutes on low heat.

    Add chicken and milk to the pan, simmer until chicken is tender, about 10 minutes.

    Add spinach and garam masala, cook until spinach starts sticking to the pan, about 15 minutes.

    Remove from heat, add butter, and cover until ready to serve over rice.

    Chicken Kabab

    1 tsp saffron ground and disolved in 2 Tb hot water
    1 C fresh lime juice
    2 Tb evoo
    2 large onions, peeled and thinkly sliced
    2 broiling chickens, about 4 pounds, cut into 20 pieces total

    10 cherry tomatoes

    For basting
    juice of one lime
    2 Tb evoo


    Combine first group of ingredients and marinade at least 6 hours and up to 2 days.

    Skewer tomatoes.

    Skewer chicken pieces, like-sized pieces together so they cook evenly.

    Combine basting solution.

    Grill chicken and tomatoes, turning and basting as needed.  Juice to 'done' chicken will be yellow rather than pink.

    Serve with lavash, nan (or pita if you can't find lavash or nan).

    Curried Chicken Pies

    From the book, Eating Royally.
    Makes 24 small pies.

    1/2 stick butter
    2 Tb curry powder
    1/4 C flour
    1 C chicken broth
    1/2 C plus 1 Tb heavy cream
    1 roasted chicken, skin and bones removed
    1 17-oz box frozen puff pastry, thawed
    1 egg, beaten

    Oven to 375.

    In a saute' pan over high heat, melt butter and stir in curry powder, flour and stir until combined.  Gradually whisk in the broth and cream, season with salt and pepper, and reduce the heat to simmer, 5 minutes.

    Dice chicken and stir into sauce.  Add more broth if sauce is too thinck.  Head to bubbling and adjust seasoning if needed.  Remove from heat and allow to cool.

    Roll out both sheets of puff pastry on a lightly floured surface to a rectangle about 1/8" thick.  Using a 2" cookie cutter, cut 48 circles out of the dough.  Place 1 1/2tsp of chicken in the center of half the circles.

    Brush the other half of the circles with beaten egg, and press, brushed egg side down, onto the top of the chicken mixture circles, pressing edges together.  Brush tops with remaining beaten egg and transfer to baking sheet.

    Bake for 15 minutes or until golden.  Remove to a cooling rack and allow to cool slightly.

    Monday, August 8, 2011

    Chicken Fingers with Honey Mustard

    boneless, skinless chicken breasts cut into strips

    3/4 C milk

    1 C flour

    oil for frying

    Get the frying pan hot, dip chicken strips in milk, dredge in flour mixture, fry.

    Serve with honey mustard mixed to your taste.

    Spinach and Brie Chicken with Tomato Orzo

    8 thin chicken cutlets (I take normal breasts, cut them into two thin breasts, and pound them)
    dijon mustard
    spinach - a lot
    4 oz brie cheese cut into 8 wedges

    1 C orzo
    2 plum tomatoes cored and chopped
    1/4 C fresh parsley chopped
    1/2 stick butter
    1 Tb lemon juice

    On each cutlet, brush with mustard, sprinkle with salt/pepper, cover with spinach, place a piece of brie at one end, then roll it up tightly.  Place seam side down in a 9x13 pan.  Cook about 350 until done.

    Meanwhile, cook orzo, add remaining ingredients, and toss to combine.

    Chicken Tacos


    Pineapple Mustard Glazed Ham

    The following is basically this recipe without the high maintenance parts.

    2 med pineapples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/4" slices
    3 C sugar
    2 C water

    1/4 C country style mustard

    1 smoked, bone-in ham, (10 pounds) excess skin trimmed and down to 1/4" fat

    1 C dry white wine

    Bring first 3 ingredients to boil in a pan.  Reduce heat to simmer.  Cook until mixture reduces to 4 C (a long time, an hour +)  Skim foam as it develops.  Let cool and stir in mustard.  (Can be made a few days ahead.)

    Oven to 350.

    Score ham and place in a roasting pan.  Drizzle wine over top.  Coat with half the glaze.  Cover with parchment, then foil, and bake 1 hour.

    Increase temp to 425.  Coat ham with remaining glaze.  Bake uncovered (basting occasionally) until browned, about 40-45 minutes.

    Rest 30 minutes before carving and serve with pan drippings.

    Poultry Brine

    1 1/4 C salt (or 2 C Kosher/coarse salt)
    1/2 C brown sugar
    1 gallon vegetable stock
    1 Tb black peppercorns
    1 Tb allspice berries

    1 gallon ice water

    Put 1st group of ingredients in large pot, bring to boil, remove from heat and allow to cool.  Pour in ice water and stir to combine.

    Put a 'brine bag' (if you can find them and/or are willing to pay a ridiculous sum of money for said bags) or a hefty bag in the bottom of an ice chest.  Put the turkey in the bag.  Pour the brine over and tie up the bag.  Add ice packs and leave it alone for the day.  Carefully turn the turkey before going to bed and refresh ice packs.  The next morning, remove bird, rinse, and roast as usual.

    Spicy Dr Pepper Shredded Pork


    I live in the desert and can't always fire up the oven, so I make this in a crock pot.  Here's what I do:

    Layer, in order:

    1 large onion cut into wedges
    1 pork shoulder (a.k.a. pork butt) 5-7 pounds
    11 oz can chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
    2 cans dr pepper
    2 Tb brown sugar

    Cook on low until falling apart.

    Shred meat, discard fat.  Spoon as much fat of the liquid as possible.  Return meat to crock pot to keep warm.

    Serve in tortillas w shredded lettuce, salsa, guacamole, cheese, whatever.

    Yum. Fest.