RSS

Tag Archives: mark bittman

No Smoker, No Problem – Make These Oven-Smoked Spare Ribs

Not having a grill at your disposal to use in the summertime is a big disappointment, at least for me. Living condo life in New York prevents us from having a charcoal or gas grill to do any outdoor cooking on. I tried the electric grill for a number of years and it did a good job cooking, but it just isn’t the same as using charcoal or even gas. You get the grill marks but you don’t get the same sear and smell that you do from other ways of cooking. That is why I often try to make the best of the grill pans I have without setting off the smoke alarm or use the oven. It may not be the ideal way to do it in the summertime, but it’s the best I have available. One of the things I really miss is the ability to do racks of ribs on the grill. There is something about the great smoky flavor you can get when you cook ribs on the grill that make them spectacular. I have been looking around at different methods to do some smoking in the oven. I considered stovetop smokers and smoking guns, but they seem a little expensive to me for something I may only use a handful of times a year and since we are already tight for space in our small kitchen, it may not be the most practically thing to have. When I came across this recipe at New York Times Cooking from Mark Bittman for oven-smoked ribs, it seemed too easy and I was skeptical about just how well it might actually work out.

Oven- Smoked Spare Ribs

1 tablespoon salt

2 tablespoons brown sugar

1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1 tablespoon chili powder

2 tablespoons paprika

1 rack spare ribs, 2 to 3 pounds

Your favorite homemade or store-bought barbecue sauce

 

Heat the oven to 225 degrees. While the oven heats, mix together the salt, brown sugar, pepper, cumin, chili powder and paprika in a small bowl until the ingredients are blended. Rub the spice mix all over the pork.

Layer the bottom of a roasting pan with hickory or oak chips (or any other wood chips you prefer) and add enough water to create a shallow pool coating the bottom of the pan and moistening the chips; do not drown them.

Put a rack over the chips and put the rubbed meat on the rack. Cover the entire roasting pan tightly with foil, making a tent at the top so the smoke-flavored steam can circulate around the meat. Bake the ribs for 2 1/2 to 3 hours, or until the meat is cooked and tender.

Carefully remove the foil from the pan and, if desired, paint the ribs with your favorite barbecue sauce. Run the ribs under the broiler, watching them carefully, until they are nicely crisp and browned, about 5 minutes.

It did seem almost too easy to me. I was naturally worried that there would be a lot of smoke in the oven and was prepared to race to the smoke alarm but I never had to once. The foil kept the smoke trapped in the roasting pan with the meat and did a wonderful job. I used some hickory chips I had purchased at the supermarket and they added some great flavor to the meat. I read on the website that some people had done the ribs this way in their slow cooker, which trapped the smoke in better because of the seal that the cover provides, so this certainly could be an option for you to try. Are they going to be ribs that are better than what you can do on a grill or in a smoker? No, they aren’t; but if you don’t have those as options and really want to get some smoke into the ribs, it is a pretty good alternative to try. You might also want to add a little bit of liquid smoke to the water in the roasting pan to help amp up some of the smoke flavor you get. The ribs come out with definite smoke flavor and smell. I found I had to cook mine for a little over 3 hours to get them as tender as we like them, but other than that the recipe worked out really well. Like any rib recipe, you can always go with corn on the cob, coleslaw, baked beans and potato salad to make a great meal.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for another recipe. Until then, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

IMG_0292

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on July 13, 2016 in Cooking, Dinner, Grilling, Pork

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

Bacon 25 Ways – NYTimes.com

Bacon 25 Ways – NYTimes.com.

It’s hard to find someone who doesn’t like bacon, and it can be a very versatile ingredient, fitting into every course of a meal and breakfast, lunch and dinner to boot. You can also cook it in a variety of ways – in the microwave, on the stovetop, on the grill or in the oven. In the New York Times, Mark Bittman has put together 25 easy and fantastic ways that you can use bacon in various dishes and ways. Check it out!

 

Tags: , , , , , ,

A Quick Week Night Meal – Stir-Fried Beef with Onions and Ginger

As I have written about before, I make a lot of stir fry dinners. They are a great way to do an easy weeknight meal in a flash and you can use just about any ingredients you happen to have on hand to make a good combination for a meal. All you need after that is some rice and you can have your dinner on the table in under 30 minutes if you time everything right. You can even make things easier for yourself if you want and keep a bag of frozen sir fry vegetables around just for such an occasion. For this recipe, which I got from Mark Bittman, I used a company of some fresh with some frozen even though his original recipe doesn’t really call for any vegetables at all. it is a quick beef stir fry with onions and ginger that you can make yourself and will taste better than any takeout that you can get that will cost you even more. I did alter his original recipe by marinating the beef for a bit first. I was using a London broil and wanted to break it down some and impart some flavor, so that is what I did. You can always just use the beef on its own if you prefer and ignore my marinating instructions.

Stir-Fried Beef with Onions and Ginger

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 teaspoons lemon juice

3 tablespoons balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce

1/2 cup red wine

1 tablespoon soy sauce

1 teaspoon honey

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 to 2 1/2 pounds top round London broil or flank steak

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 large or 3 medium onions, thinly sliced
2 cups fresh or frozen vegetables, cut to bite size

1 teaspoon minced garlic
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon minced or grated fresh ginger
1/2 cup beef or chicken stock or water
1 tablespoon hoisin sauce or soy sauce

To marinade the beef, mix together all of the ingredients except for the meat. Place the meat in a shallow dish and cover it with the marinade. Cover the meat with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 4 hours but no more than 24 hours.

Remove the meat from the refrigerator and bring it to room temperature before cooking.

Slice the beef as thinly as you can, across the grain. It’s easier if you freeze it for 15 to 30 minutes first. Cut the slices into bite-sized pieces. Sprinkle with salt and pepper and set aside.
Heat a large skillet over high heat until it smokes, 3 to 4 minutes. Add 1 tablespoon of oil and the onions. Stir immediately, then stir every 30 seconds or so until the onions soften and begin to char slightly, 4 to 5 minutes. Sprinkle the onions with salt and pepper, then remove them; keep the heat high.

Add 1/2 tablespoon of oil to the pan and then add the vegetables. Cook, stirring occasionally until the vegetables are heated through and crisp-tender, about 2 to 3 minutes. Remove the vegetables from the pan and set them aside.
Add the remaining oil to the pan, then the garlic and 1 tablespoon of the ginger; stir and immediately add the beef. Stir immediately, then stir every 20 seconds or so until it loses its color, just a minute or two longer; stir in the onions and the vegetables. Add the stock, hoisin, and remaining teaspoon of ginger; let some of the liquid bubble away and serve immediately, over rice.

The nice thing about this recipe is that you can make it all very quickly and it tastes fantastic. if you don’t want to use beef, you can just as easily use pork, chicken or shrimp or even just make all vegetables if that is what you prefer. You will still get great flavor from the sauce to help things along. I make about one stir fry a week because it is so easy and very often just use whatever leftover protein I have along with some leftover vegetables and put together a sauce of whatever I feel like having that night.

That’s all I have for today. Check back next time for some more recipes. If you are in the middle of this blizzard like we are, stay warm and safe. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

002

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 13, 2014 in Beef, Cooking, Dinner, One Pot Meals

 

Tags: , , , ,

The Key to a Truly Great Chicken Wing – NYTimes.com

The Key to a Truly Great Chicken Wing – NYTimes.com.

Who doesn’t love chicken wings? Especially on Super Bowl Sunday? If you are still  looking for a good recipe for wings for tonight, Mark Bittman wrothe this great article for the New York Times a few months ago about how grilling your wings provides you with the best option in making great wings and gives you some great recipes and sauces to use so you can make all kinds of chicken wings when you want them. You can always break out the grill pan and give them a try or just fry them and try the different sauce recipes he offers. Check it out!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 2, 2014 in Cooking, Cooking Websites, Grilling, Poultry, Sauce

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Let’s (Bacon) Wrap It Up

I wanted to make something easy today and just use what we already had in the house since I have a bit of a cold and didn’t feel like going out. I checked in the freezer and we had some tilapia, so that’s what I am going with today. I found a great recipe idea from Mark Bittman in this weeks New York Times Sunday Magazine that makes some great use of fish and everybody’s favorite, bacon. It’s quick, easy and destined to taste great. I mean, it has bacon in it, it has to be great, right?

Bacon Wrapped Tilapia

6 slices bacon

1 pound firm whitefish, like tilapia or cod, cut into 4 filets

1 tablespoon olive oil

1/2 red onion, thinly sliced

Salt and pepper, to taste

Parsley, to garnish

In a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, add the olive oil and warm until shimmering. Add in the red onion and saute until they are just starting to soften, about 3 minutes. Meanwhile, wrap the bacon slices tightly around the fish fillets and lightly season with salt and pepper. Add this fish to the pan and saute until the fish and bacon are done and the bacon is starting to crisp, turning halfway through cooking, about 8 minutes. Garnish with parsley ans serve.

That’s all there is to this one. You get the smoky flavor of the bacon added to the fish along with the bite of the red onion and you have a nice meal. I served this with plain white rice, but I also had some acorn squash on hand, so I decided to bake that and have it as our vegetable. I love the way acorn squash tastes when it has been baked or roasted, and it tastes even better when you add in a little brown sugar and maple syrup.

Baked Acorn Squash

1 acorn squash, cut in 1/2
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2 tablespoons butter, softened
2 tablespoons maple syrup
Salt
Freshly ground black pepper

Scoop the seeds and stringy pulp out of the squash cavities and discard. In a small mixing bowl, combine the brown sugar, butter, syrup and salt and pepper, to taste. Rub the squash cavities and cut sides of the squash with the butter mixture and place them on a baking sheet, cut side up. Bake in the preheated oven for about 1 hour until the squash is tender when pierced with a fork. Serve 1 half per person.

There you have it, a quick meal for a Sunday, or any day, for that matter. There’s not a lot of clean up involved for this one either, and I plan to use the leftover rice with some turkey chili that I also made today to have for dinner tomorrow and lunches this week.

That’s all I have for tonight. I do have a few recipes that I plan to try this week, including a shrimp dish that I picked up this week that looks pretty tasty. We’re also heading into the soups and stews time of year, so I plan to be making more things like that in the coming weeks, so we’ll have to check for some recipes for them as well. Until next time, enjoy the rest of your day and enjoy your meal!

 

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on October 14, 2012 in Cooking, Dinner, Seafood, Vegetables

 

Tags: , , , , ,

Chicken, Beets and Magic Ice Cream

We had family over for dinner yesterday so we did our typical Sunday dinner with way too much food. We started off with appetizers of buffalo chicken pizza and some homemade guacamole and tomato salsa with some chips. Then for dinner, I tried to do everything in one roasting pan to help cut down on the clean up. We made a couple of roast chickens with roasted root vegetables that we had picked up at the farmer’s market on Saturday. This also included some fresh beets that I roasted and they turned out wonderful. The whole dinner was very easy to prepare, although it took about 2 hours in total to cook. I used recipes from Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything” for the meal yesterday.

Roast Chicken with Root Vegetables

6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 whole chickens, 3 to 4 pounds each, trimmed of excess fat

2-3 russet potatoes, scrubbed and chopped

1/2 pound parsnips, peeled and chopped

1/2 pound carrots, peeled and chopped

1 sweet potato, scrubbed and chopped

1 onion, peeled and quartered

6 whole cloves of garlic

Heat the oven to 450 degrees. Mix together the olive oil and thyme and some salt and pepper. Put the chickens, breast side up, on a rack in a roasting pan. Toss all the vegetables together in a large bowl with 3/4 of the herb and oil mixture and scatter in the bottom of the roasting pan beneath the chickens. Roast the chickens in the oven for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, spoon some of the herb mixture over the chicken and the vegetables. Shake the pan gently so the vegetables turn and cook evenly.

After roasting for another 10 minutes, the chicken breasts should begin to brown (if they don’t, wait a few more minutes until they are brown). Turn the heat in the oven down to 325 degrees, baste again with the remaining herb mixture, and roast until an instant read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 155-165 degrees.

Remove the chickens from the oven and raise the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Continue roasting the vegetables while the chickens rest before carving, about 15 minutes or until the vegetables are tender. Serve the carved chickens with the vegetables scattered around them.

We served the chickens and vegetables with a fresh tomato and cucumber salad dressed with extra virgin olive oil, salt, pepper and a little diced shallot. You could just as easily only make one of the vegetables for this meal instead of the mix, but the mix turned out quite nice and gave us a good variety. I also made some fresh beets that I roasted with this meal. Now, not everyone is a fan of beets in general. I think some people were scarred in childhood by being forced into eating them, but fresh roasted beets taste unbelievably delicious. They have a very sweet flavor from their natural sugars, and once you have roasted them they are great hot or cold. Roasting them really is the best method for cooking them.

Roasted Beets

4 large beets, scrubbed, greens cut off (leave a bit of the greens on the end to help stop them from bleeding all over while they cook)

Heat the oven to 400 degrees. Wash the beets well. Wrap them individually in foil and put them on a cookie sheet or in a roasting pan. Bake, undisturbed for 45 to 90 minutes, until the thin blade of knife pierces one with a little resistance. Remove the beets from the foil and carefully and gently rub the surface of the beet to remove the peel. Dress lightly with extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper.

If you bake them in foil, you don’t really have to worry about them staining anything (unless of course you drop a piece on your shirt while you’re eating. Thankfully, none of us did). You could also take the roasted beets, cut them and saute them gently with some butter or olive oil after roasting for some added flavor, but I think they are great just this way. Everyone seemed to really enjoy them, and I had leftovers tonight with dinner.

I decided to try something completely different for dessert last night. I had seen a recipe from Cook’s Country for something called Magic Strawberry Ice Cream. The name intrigued me so I read up on it and it claimed to make ice cream with the need of an ice cream machine or maker. I figured why not, let’s give it a try.

Magic Strawberry Ice Cream

8 ounces strawberries, hulled

1/2 cup sweetened condensed milk

1 ounce white chocolate chips

1 tablespoon vodka

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

1 1/4 cups heavy creamed, chilled

Process the strawberries in a food processor until smooth, about 30 seconds (puree should measure about 3/4 cup). Microwave the sweetened condensed milk, white chocolate chips and vodka in a large bowl until the chocolate melts, about 1 minute, whisking halfway through cooking. Whisk in the strawberry puree, vanilla and salt.

Using a stand mixer fitted with a whisk, whip the heavy cream on medium-low speed until foamy, about 1 minute. Increase the speed to high and whip until soft peaks form, 1 to 3 minutes. Whisk one-third of the whipped cream into the strawberry mixture, then gently fold in the remaining whipped cream, 1 scoop at a time, until combined. Freeze in an airtight container until firm, 6 hours or up to 2 weeks. Serve.

I know you are probably asking, why is there vodka in this recipe? Well the berries have a lot of moisture all on their own and the ice cream would crystallize and ice over. The vodka prevents this from happening and lets the berries do their thing. I have to say, I was very skeptical this would work but I could tell before I even combined the puree with the whipped cream that this was going to taste good. The puree itself smelled exactly like a good strawberry ice cream. Once everything was combined and had set, it was perfect and tasted awesome. What made it even better for us was that Michelle’s grandmother had unknowingly made a strawberry shortcake to bring for dessert, so it was absolute perfect with a little ice cream on the side.

Of course, if I was smart I would have taken pictures of everything, but Sean reminded me about after most of the ice cream was gone, so I didn’t get a picture of it (he’s actually finishing the ice cream right now). Oh well, maybe next time. Now that we know how easy it is to make, I’ll certainly make it again.

That’s it for tonight. I have 2 chicken carcasses to make stock with tomorrow and I never did get to make chicken salad sandwiches the other night, but maybe I will do that tomorrow and post the recipe with some potato salad and cole slaw. We’ll have to see what else comes along this week. Work has kept me very busy lately, so I haven’t had time to blog, but I will try to fit some in this week. Until then, enjoy your evening and enjoy your meal!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on August 6, 2012 in Cooking, Dessert, Poultry, Vegetables

 

Tags: , , , ,

It’s Guys’ Night In, Next Week’s Meal Plan, and a Chicken

Michelle is away on a business for a couple of days, so that kind of puts the meal plan on hold for a few days until we get settled again. Sean and I are having guys’ night in tonight, which means ordering pizza, playing video games and starting a puzzle we bought. It should be a lot of fun to just hang out for the night and have a good time and not worry about cooking for the evening. It’s nice to do that once in a while. We did go over next week’s meal plan, so here it is:

Sunday – Fish Tacos, Pineapple Salsa, and Vegetable Slaw

Monday – Beef Stew (this will be our slow cooker meal for the week)

Tuesday – Bacon and Chicken Ranch Quesadillas, Rice and Guacamole

Wednesday – Lentils with Rice and Sautéed Onions (this is our meat-free meal of the week)

Thursday  – Sesame Chicken Stir Fry with Fried Rice

Friday – Fish – seeing as how it is Lent, we thought we would try to do fish on Fridays for the next several weeks. I won’t know what I am making until I go to the fish market to check out what looks good and is on sale.

Saturday – Roasted Chicken, Roasted Potatoes and Broccoli

I try to make a roasted chicken every couple of weeks so we can both use the carcass to make stock and use the leftovers for lunches. It works out really well for as far as both go, although I also keep some chicken drumsticks in the freezer to use to make stock as well if I need to in a pinch. if you’d like the recipe for making the stock I make, I had posted it in an earlier blog, but you can get it right here.

Since I am not cooking anything tonight, I thought I would still post a recipe that might be good for everyone, and since I have been talking about chicken, I got this recipe in my email today from Mark Bittman, the author of “How to Cook Everything.” It’s a nice roasted chicken recipe, and to top off our week of one pot meals, it is a one pot meal, roasting vegetables and lentils with the chicken.

Chicken and Lentils

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 whole chicken, 3 to 4 pounds, trimmed of excess fat and cut into 8 pieces, or any combination of parts

1 large or 2 medium onions, sliced

1 tablespoon chopped garlic

1 tablespoon chopped or grated fresh ginger or 1 teaspoon ground ginger

1 cup chopped tomato (canned is fine; include the juices)

1 teaspoon ground coriander

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1 large bunch fresh cilantro or parsley sprigs, tied together with kitchen string

Two 3-inch cinnamon sticks

1 cup dried brown or green lentils, washed and picked over

Put the oil in a deep skillet with a lid or a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. When hot, add the chicken, skin side down, and brown it well, rotating and turning the pieces as necessary; the process will take 10 to 15 minutes. (You can skip this step if you like; heat a tablespoon of oil and go directly to cooking the onions.)

When the chicken is nicely browned, remove it from the skillet and turn the heat down to medium. Pour or spoon off all but a tablespoon of the oil. Stir in the onions, garlic, ginger, tomato, coriander, and some salt and pepper. Add 4 cups water, along with the cilantro or parsley bundle, cinnamon sticks, and lentils. Adjust the heat so the mixture bubbles gently but steadily, cover, and cook for about 30 minutes, or until the lentils are almost tender.

Discard the herb bundle and cinnamon sticks and return the return the chicken to the pan, skin side up. Cover and continue to let the mixture bubble gently until the chicken is cooked through, another 10 to 20 minutes; the chicken is done when an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh reads 155-165°F. Taste and adjust the seasoning and serve. (At this point, you may let the dish sit for a few hours or cover and refrigerate for up to a day before re-heating and serving; you may have to add a little water to thin the sauce a bit.)

This dish goes nicely if you serve this with rice, warmed pitas, or any crusty loaf of bread. If you want to follow Mark Bittman on Facebook, you can check him out here, or try his website here to sign up to get recipes every week.

As a final note, the latest issue of Bon Appetit has some great recipes in it and some St. Patrick’s Day ideas as well (it’s never too early to start thinking ahead. You can check them out at the link to their page that I have listed on the right, or you can just click here to go and see what’s new or even subscribe to the magazine (it’s one of my favorites). That’s all I have for today. Time to get on with Guys Night. Sean has already starting playing one game, and the pizza guy is here, so I will be back tomorrow. I’m not cooking tomorrow either, but I will be back with some “guy” recipes that Sean and I like. Have a great night!

 
Leave a comment

Posted by on February 24, 2012 in Cooking, Cooking Websites, Meal Plan Menu, Poultry

 

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Time for Breakfast (for Dinner)!

It’s in the sixties in January here in Harriman, which is unheard of for this time of year, but I’ll take it! Today there were two great articles that are food-related in the New York Times. The first, written by Leslie Kaufman, closely relates to what I am trying to do at home and here on the blog. She has her sons cook one meal a week, which includes the planning of the meal, detailing ingredients and doing the cooking. Her sons are 14 and  10 and do the actual cooking with a parent within earshot, but this is something I have been working on doing with Sean for a while. It’s a great way to get kids involved in the meals, gives them some responsibility, let’s them know what you have to go through every day to cook for them, and makes them more interested in doing things in the kitchen. I think it’s a great article, so take a look at it if you get the chance.

The second article is written by Mark Bittman, the author of ‘How to Cook Everything.” It’s a good article on how the Department of Agriculture is making schools change up their lunch menus to make things better for our kids. It gives you a good look as to what the changes are going to be, and while there may still be work to do on this, it’s a step in the right direction.

Now on to our meal for the day. Today is Michelle’s choice, but it also one of Sean’s favorites. We all love breakfast for dinner nights, actually. It gives us a chance to eat the breakfast food we love but don’t always have time to make during weekday mornings when things can be a bit hectic. We are making this meal our meat-free meal for the week as well, which disappoints Sean since that means no bacon or sausage tonight, but we’ll still have a great meal with Pancakes, Hash Browns and maybe an egg or two. Since a vegetable doesn’t really go too well this meal, we are going to opt for a fruit salad instead.

Pancakes are pretty easy to make, whether it is from scratch or from a box. We often use Bisquick ourselves when you need something done in a pinch. It tastes good and it’s quick, but today I am going to post a recipe for some homemade pancakes. The recipe I am using calls for buttermilk, but if you don’t have any on hand, whisk 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice with two cups of milk and set it aside for a few minutes to thicken, and voila, you have buttermilk. This type of buttermilk is fine for cooked applications, but I wouldn’t use it for raw recipes like the ranch dressing we made yesterday.

Pancakes

2 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons baking powder

1/2 teaspoon baking soda

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 large egg

3 tablespoons butter, melted

2 cups buttermilk

1 to 2 teaspoons vegetable oil

Adjust an oven rack to the middle position and heat the oven to 200 degrees. Set a wire cooling rack over a baking sheet and set aside.

Whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, melted butter, and then the buttermilk. Make a well in the center of the dry ingredients, pour the buttermilk mixture into the well, and whisk very gently until the buttermilk mixture is just incorporated (a few lumps should remain). Be careful not to overmix the batter.

Heat a large skillet over medium heat for 3 to 5 minutes. Brush the bottom of the pan with 1 teaspoon of vegetable oil. Using 1/4 cup of batter per pancake, add the batter to the skillet (only 2 or 3 pancakes will fit at a time) and cook until large bubbles begin to appear, about 2 minutes. Flip the pancakes and cook until golden brown on the second side, about 1 1/2 minutes longer. Spread the pancakes out over the wire rack on the baking sheet (they shouldn’t overlap) and hold in the warm oven. Repeat with the remaining batter, brushing the skillet with oil as needed between batches.

If you have any leftover pancakes (which we usually do) let them cool to room temperature, then wrap them in plastic wrap and freeze. They will keep for up to a week while still maintaining most of their original flavor and texture. Defrost in the refrigerator for 24 hours, then heat in a 350 degree oven until warm, about 5 minutes. I usually leave a couple on the fridge for the next day and my buddy Liam and I have them for breakfast.

Of course, there are a lot of things you can add to pancakes or top them with. I love adding bananas or blueberries; once you add the batter to the skillet, just sprinkle a few slices of banana or a few blueberries over each pancake, or just top the pancakes with the fruit after they are cooked.

We decided to make some hash browns tonight to go with our pancakes. Hash browns go great with bacon or sausage, and we’ll do that another time I am sure, but they are fun to have any time. They don’t take long to make, and I use the food processor to grate the potatoes, sparing my knuckles the use of the box grater.

Hash Browns

1 pound russet potatoes (2 medium) peeled

2 tablespoons grated onion

1 tablespoon minced fresh parsley (optional)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon butter

Grate the potatoes using either the large holes of a box grater (watch your fingers!) or the shredder attachment of a food processor (you should have about 1 1/2 cups when your done grating). Wrap the grated potatoes in a kitchen towel and squeeze thoroughly of excess moisture, then toss with the onion, parsley (if using) salt and pepper.

Melt 1/2 tablespoon of the butter in a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat until it begins to brown, swirling to coat the pan. Scatter the potatoes evenly in the skillet and press firmly into a cake. Reduce the heat to medium and continue to cook until dark golden brown and crisp on the first side, about 8 minutes. When the first side has browned, slide the potatoes onto a large plate. Carefully cover the plate with another large plate, and flip so that the potatoes are on the plate, browned-side up. Melt the remaining 1/2 tablespoon of butter, then slide the potatoes back into the skillet, browned-side up, and continue to cook over medium heat until the second side is golden and crisp, about 5 minutes longer. Slide the hash brown cake onto a plate or cutting board and cut into wedges.

There’s nothing like hash browns with some eggs. I prefer a fried egg or an egg over easy, but for tonight we’ll just whip up some scrambled eggs and save the fried egg for another time, maybe for a nice egg sandwich with some sausage or bacon.

Scrambled Eggs

8 large eggs

1/4 cup half and half (you can use milk instead, but the eggs are creamier with half and half)

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 tablespoon butter

Whisk together the eggs, half and half, salt, and pepper. Melt the butter in a non-stick skillet over medium-high heat, swirling to coat the pan. Add the eggs and cook while gently pushing, lifting and folding them from one side of the pan to the other, using a wooden spoon or heatproof spatula, until they are nicely clumped, shiny and wet, about 2 minutes. Remove the cooked eggs from the pan quickly and serve.

We’ll get more into eggs another time when we’re using some meat with breakfast, but you can always add cheese, chives, onions, thyme or countless other herbs to add some flavor.

We’re finishing off with a simple fruit salad of what we have on hand – bananas, blueberries, blackberries, grapes and mandarin oranges, sprinkled with a little sugar and lemon juice. Of course, you can always use whatever fruits you like, are in season and taste the best to you.

Boy, for such a simple meal, I did a lot of writing today! There are lots of different variations you can do when doing breakfast for dinner. I’d love to hear what other people do when they make this for a meal. If you have any comments or questions, please feel free to leave them and I’ll try to comment as quickly as I can. Tomorrow is a leftovers night for dinner, but I have decided to write about some good ideas for Super Bowl snacking, since the game is Sunday and you want to be prepared. Let me know if you have any snacks or recipes you’d like to see to use for the big game. Have a great day!

 

 

 

 

 

Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Some Quiet Time to Read a Good Book

Sean and Michelle went to a fundraiser dinner tonight, so there’s no cooking tonight, just leftovers for me. I’ll be having some of the leftover Chicken and Dumplings I made on Sunday. I am sure I’ll put the recipe up here one day since it turned out pretty well. I know, I know, you’re saying, geez, we’re only a few days into this and we’ve only had one day of recipes. I promise, I am cooking the rest of the week so there will be stuff on here. For today, I thought I would just take a few minutes and let you know where I get a lot of my recipes from in case you want to check out these books or websites.

One cookbook that I use very often is “The America’s Test Kitchen Family Cookbook.” This cookbook covers just about everything you could ever want to know. They cover all the basics of cooking, techniques, ingredients, what works and what doesn’t, and they make lots of recommendations of brands for all kinds of different equipment and ingredients. If you want just one cookbook to start with, I would recommend this one to use. A lot of the recipes I use come from this book. The America’s Test Kitchen website has a lot of the recipes on it as well, but you have to pay to subscribe to the website (www.americastestkitchen.com), so you might as well use that money to buy the book yourself. It is available from Amazon here:http://www.amazon.com/Americas-Test-Kitchen-Family-Cookbook/dp/1933615486/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1326843698&sr=8-1

Another cookbook I use a lot is Mark Bittman’s “How to Cook Everything.” Whatever America’s Test Kitchen doesn’t cover, this one sure does. It’s a thick book that really does seem to cover everything. He also goes over lots of techniques as well as covers lots of recipes, and the newer version of the book does cover more vegetarian dishes. There are lots of variations on recipes also so you can change things up on classic recipes you have used for a while. There are over 2,000 recipes in this book, so you can find a recipe for just about any ingredient you would want to use. This book is also available on Amazon:http://www.amazon.com/Cook-Everything-Completely-Revised-Anniversary/dp/0764578650/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1326844032&sr=1-1. I also follow Mark Bittman on Facebook, where he also posts some recipes, along with other articles he writes:https://www.facebook.com/MarkBittman

Those are the two main cookbooks I use, but I also use a magazine to get recipes and ideas. We have been subscribing to Bon Appetit for years, and I have gotten lots of good recipes from them. Of course, the pictures they have look a lot nicer than what I have been able to turn out, but this magazine has dozens of recipes every month and also gives great tips for shopping, on particular techniques, wines and spirits to buy, and also where some of the best places to eat are in many different cities all over. You don’t have to subscribe to the magazine; you could also visit their website, http://www.bonappetit.com/, where they have quite a cache of recipes and articles for you to look through.

There are two other websites that I frequent to get recipes from. One is http://www.williams-sonoma.com/. I love to shop at the store and online, even if some of their prices are high. They have some great recipes on their website, but you have to keep in mind that this is also their retail website, so they include items that you can but directly from them to use in the recipes they list, They also have some recipes that are very specific to ingredients that they sell, so you have to keep an out when scanning through the recipes to make sure they aren’t using something you won’t have around. The other website I use a lot is http://www.foodnetwork.com/. They also have a very large cache of recipes from all their shows and from other sources. You can just type an item into their search box and it will pull up recipes for that item. You can then sort them based on what show they came from, how other users have rated the recipes, the method used, and even watch videos of the recipe. It’s a fantastic source of recipes. I personally use several recipes used by Ina Garten, Anne Burrell, Giada De Laurentiis and Tyler Florence. You can pretty much find a recipe for anything you want, and then read reviews of it by other everyday users to see how they liked the recipe, what worked and what didn’t. I find it a very useful website.

Do you have any particular books or websites that you like to use often? I would love to hear about them. I am always looking for new ideas and new sources of information. Please pass them along so we can all check them out.

That’s about all I have for today. It will be back to cooking tomorrow night and tomorrow night was my choice, so we are making seafood for dinner. We’ll be having sea scallops, rice, and roasted vegetables so check in tomorrow to see the recipes. Enjoy your evening!

 

 
2 Comments

Posted by on January 17, 2012 in Cookbooks, Cooking Websites

 

Tags: , , , , ,

 
Authentic Autograph Source

The source for all of your authentic autograph needs! From autographs to supplies, we have it all located in one convenient place at a great price!

Jennifer Probst

a little bit naughty a little bit nice

Laissez Faire

Letting Life Lead

%d bloggers like this: