Monday, November 22, 2010

Thanksgiving for Turkeys

Running late...running late...besides second place is lampworking..yes, work with fire and glass...this morning it was fire in the smoker. I am going to have to get one of those fire cans to start the coals as it took me three times the time to get the coals ready for the bird. I feel guilty only putting one bird on as two can be cooked for the same amount of time, charcoal and chips..but one can only eat so much turkey.

The good news here is that we will be having turkey sandwiches for Thanksgiving this year! I am smoking one small bird and will roast another...I am in the middle of making potato salad for an office party but will have the extra for here

Cooked (of course) russet, onion, celery, hardboiled eggs, mayo, and ballpark mustard..I put celery seeds in mine but won't for the office..and of course salt and pepper...I also cut potatoes up before cooking and break them up to mine is a mix of chunks and then some that resembles a bit on the mashed side..but recipe..just ingredients

Going to work on that pumpkin pie/empanada...the first trip to the sweet potato instead..yes, in a hurry; second trip to Target, they didn't have a clue as to want I wanted...ergo the invoice said that the pumpkin pie mix was there...alas, just pumpkin..sad part was that the three people really didn't know the difference between plane pumpkin and pumpkin pie mix..but then 'the kid' made a run while I was working a show and did bring home the right stuff.

So, that is on the agenda today as well as a fish taco..have the ingredients..have to put it together..

So, it's going to be the year of the Turkey Sandwich!

And as a postscript.....going to Mexico for the foodblogger camp! That is going to be too cool!!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Fresh Green Beans

Haven't any idea why I wanted to say...sometimes I get tired of hearing about fresh and seasonal..check my first blog front..yup, the one wearing the bowl shaped thing on her head..and don't know what that is..maybe something hiding curlers..makes no sense..But fresh..seasonal..that was my grandmother..raised in N.J., second woman to have her driver's license..I went to visit for a couple weeks just before starting college...everything was beans were IN season..and yes, with the exception of two days..we had fresh green beans at least once a day...cooked just right, still bright and green, cut on the diagonal, butter, and salt and pepper...she cooked fresh, seasonal..

Key Lime Pie Recipe

Key Lime Pie....lots of people love fact, so do I. But remember I don't like to bake..usually...savory baking is a different story..but more on that later. I for some unknown reason wanted to make a key lime she who wants a dessert but wants the easy way out..I looked at some recipes...who wants left over ingredients...I had leftover graham cracker crumbs in the freezer for three years..waiting for the next time I needed them. So, this is how it goes..

1 ready made pie crust, graham cracker, yes
2 each 14oz sweetened condensed milk..I buy the cheapest brand
1 cup lime juice ( I buy bunches of limes at a time, use the electric juicer and then freeze the juice)
1/2 cup sour cream

NO eggs, no baking..nada...mix the condensed milk with the lime juice, then add the (you'll get used to my short hand...and pour into the pie shell...BUT you have to leave it in the fridge overnite...and yes, I always keep sour cream in the fridge...lime j and sometimes lemon j. frozen in 8oz containers in the, next time you want to make a dessert and donn't want a fuss...even my CIA pastry friend loved it so much he used this recipe the last time. You could doll it up w/ whipped crdam..if you is looking you could used the cream in the can...and yes I do have one of those co2 cartridge things for whipped cream..I use the superfine sugar...I order that on line since the groceries have stopped carrying it around here...

and no, don't have a picture of that one..we ate it all..I had company for supper..and thought I would surprise the people by making a dessert rather than have my pastry friend make it...

And, yes, sometimes I do spend time baking..but only special things and only occasionally.

Fried Shallots and it's Cold in Dixie

The pilot light went out and it's cold..Sassy the cat is out on the prowl...I can't decide what to, just a note for those who need to know. There is something in the oriental markets/grocer that you might like to have in your cabinet...

Fried Shallots! What a wonderful jar to have to pull out and garnish so many foods...where does the bottle come from..mine comes from fact I have two smaller, 3.5 oz and one larger. The smaller jar even comes with its own little red measuring can put them on your salad..your fried/or any other rice...oh, breakfast congee...garnish your stew..vegetables...potato salad...just so many uses..

Crispy little goodies..

Mac and Cheese..added these fried shallots as well as bacon to one of the containers of mac and cheese I made..froze..then defrost overnight..and heat in oven, 350*, til hot...really, really good

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Better Late..Halloween for Pepper

Just a note as Pepper was dressed for Halloween. He hates being dressed up so we just had the coif done by his special groomer at That Fabulous Dog in Atlanta...and then Pepper certainly entertained everyone he met for the holiday season..thanks to David!

Easy does it Cheddar Pecan Coins

Today was also a quick bake off of the cheddar coins. Always make plenty of dough, freeze extra wrapped in parchment and syran..then thaw when needed, slice and bake off. These will be shipped to a friend who is on the mend from an accident. I love using the freezer to make my life many things will freeze...the all probaby have one in your recipe box or in your recipe program on the computer. My recipe program is about 12 years something called a OTM program..never upgraded by the won't upgrade to the newest operating systems..sometimes the old just can't be replaced

Crab Stuffed Mushroom Recipe fact many times I do cook without a recipe and in that case I can give you a rough idea of what I start with the crab..snow crab had been on sale at the local farmers market. I did what any red blooded cook would do..bought an arm full, brought it home, and then took it out of the shell and refroze it in small packages..yes, probably easier to by lump..but that's not the point...then five leftover large mushroom..which turned out to be six when I recounted..

about 1/2 pound snow crab
6 large mushrooms
4 ounce cream cheese
couple dashes of soy sauce
glug of white wine
stems of mushrooms sauteed with about 1/3 vidallia onion, small dice
couple pinches of black pepper
pinch of garlic powder
about 1T chives, snipped
some panko sauteed in butter for garnish
some parmesan for garnish

forgot the 1/2 beaten egg that I mixed in the stuffing

Mixed the stuffing..filled the mushrooms, garnished, put them in a pan with a little butter for a couple of minutes and then threw pan in oven at 375*...set the times for 25 minutes..will check on that. I do use the timer most of the time..and all the time if I leave the kitchen to do something check the computer or work on the torch..easy

THEY are out...the kitchen smelled of crab...the baked stuffed mushrooms look fantastic..too hot to eat this moment...but wait..

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Baked Butternut Squash Filled With Creamed Onions

Well, Sunday was cooking day..three of us in the kitchen..rotating prep the end we had a wonderfully brown roast chicken and vegetables with a creamed sauce with apple brandy, a butternut squash filled with creamed onions, mushroom strudel for app., a flat and chewy choco chip cookie from a recipe from Saveur, a cabbage casserole, mushroom risotto, galakeboreko, and apple blueberry crumble. How did we decide what to fix? That question faces us each month..My friend and pastry chef wanted to make the Greek dessert for a second time...cabbage for the first..and have me guide him through the daughter wanted to make the cookies because the picture looked good and the strudel because she wanted to work with the phyllo and we also had mushrooms in the, only a short stint during my culinary education and my externship were devoted to pastry....perhaps because I have to really measure to, the bird was mine, the creamed onion stuffed and roasted butternut squash, and the crumble. The fruits for that were decided because I had a couple of apples, and in the freezer was a lovely package of blueberries that my neighbor had picked and given there we have the for the butternut had been sitting here for a while...and I had the onions and the cream..the last two I try to have in my 'larder'...

It was a wonderful day of cooking...and made better as my friend and then an invited guest for the repast took all the leftovers forgot to take pictures of all that food...but as good as the food was..better was the fun of cooking with friends, sharing that food, and sharing the knowledge of how to make those things that we had not made before and learning how not only to make those recipes..but then techniques that enable each of us to make things I can make any crumble now...just change the the friend, he can make many types of risotto...and my daughter, is more at home working with phyllo....

The next time will be the annual Christmas stollen...and perhaps this year we will put some marzipan in the center of some of those loaves..