Fast Buffalo Chicken

22 Sep

unnamed (66)

I had two pieces of grilled chicken left over.

Never waste anything.

Cut the chicken into bite size pieces. Do not use the skin.

Place the chicken pieces on a microwave safe plate.

Drizzle with Franks buffalo wing sauce. I used about 4 to 5 tablespoons.

Put into the microwave for one minute or till hot.

Drizzle with blue cheese dressing.

This was a delicious with carrots, celery and just a few chips.

Advertisements

Fast Fried Calamari Rings

20 Sep

unnamed (65)

I have made fried calamari bad a million times but I finally got it right.

The Crisco gives the calamari flavor and the corn starch makes it crispy.

I added the garlic because I put garlic in almost everything,

One one pound bag of frozen cleaned calamari rings

One cup os corn starch

One teaspoon salt

One teaspoon black pepper

1/4 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 lemon

hot sauce

5 big tablespoons Crisco

Defrost the calamari and pat it dry with a paper towel.

Mix the corn starch, salt, pepper and garlic powder together in a bag.

Add the calamari rings and shake the bag  till all the rings have a light coating on them.

Heat the Crisco in a small frying pan till it has melted and hot on medium high heat.

Place the calamari in the pan and do not let it touch so you have to work in batches.

Let the calamari fry till you see it brown on the underside and then flip over till the entire ring is golden brown.

Place on a paper towel to drain the excess oil.

Continue till all the rings are fried.

They are so crispy.

I just squeezed some lemon on mine but you can add a hot pepper relish and toss it with the calamari.

I also like it with fried onions.

Any dipping sauce is great from a tomato sauce to a chili sauce.

I seasoned the oil with a habanero pepper and it was way too hot but a milder pepper would be okay. Just mix the pepper with the cornstarch and fry it with the calamari if you like it spicy.

 

 

 

Lobster Bisque

14 Sep

unnamed (64)

The lobsters were on sale last week so opportunity knocked.

I did eat two but saved the rest including all the shells.

By the way I did have them cooked at the store, I did not eat them raw.

I remove all the legs.

Clean the bodies of any meat and the delicious roe.

Pick all the meat out of the rest of the claws and tails but save the shells.

Take the shells, bodies and legs from four lobsters and place them in 10 cups of water.

Season the water with 4 heaping tablespoons of powdered chicken consommé soup seasoning .

Let everything come to a boil and then simmer down to about 7 or 8 cups of broth.

This takes about one hour.

Strain everything into a big bowl and discard all the shells.

Make sure you strain the broth well because nothing is worse then getting a shell.

Now that your pot is empty, wash it out and use it to finish making the bisque.

Melt 6 tablespoons of butter

Add one large diced onion  and 2 cloves of minced garlic

Cook slowly till everything is soft.

Add 1/2 cup of flour and mix well about 3 minutes. Stir all the time to make sure the flour does not burn.

Add one small can of tomato paste and mix well

Add one cup of the broth to dissolve the paste then add the rest of the broth to the flour mixture.

Add 1 1/2 cups of cream or 1/2 and 1/2 and mix well

Melt another 4 tablespoons of butter in a small pot.

Add 2 cups lobster meat cut into spoon size pieces.

Coat the lobster with the butter.

Add 3 tablespoons lemon juice, one tablespoon diced tarragon, 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg.

Add to the broth.

Season now with your salt and pepper because the lobster broth can be salty.

Instead of adding more cream, thicken the soup with the instant mashed potatoes.

I add one tablespoon for every cup of liquid.

I don’t usually use the potato flakes in bisque because I like it very smooth.

Top the bisque with larger pieces of lobster.

This is a real treat and not as fattening as a true bisque but not low calorie.

I like the chunks of lobster but if you want a velvet smooth bisque just put it into your food processor till it is smooth.

The bigger chunks look pretty on top of the soup.

 

 

Black and White Cookies

13 Sep

unnamed (63)

I grew up eating black and white cookies in Brooklyn, New York.

They were always a special treat and I would eat the vanilla side first then eat the chocolate side.

Now I do the same thing. You would think I was eight years old again.

After a lot of trial and error this is the best cookie around.

It is a take off from Zabras but printed  by Smitten kitchen.

1 3/4 cup white sugar

1 cup unsalted butter

4 large eggs

1 1/2 cups milk

3/4 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon lemon extract

2 1/2 cups sifted cake flour

2 1/2 cups sifted all purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Frosting

4 cups sifted confectioners sugar

1/4 to 1/3 cup  boiling water

3 ounces unsweetened or bittersweet chocolate

1/2 teaspoon vanilla

1 teaspoon light corn syrup

2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees

Spray two baking sheets and cover with parchment paper.

Mix the sugar and butter till it is light and fluffy.

Add the eggs one at a time

Add the vanilla and lemon extract

All the baking powder and salt

Start adding the flour a little at a time till it is all incorporated.

These cookies do grow and I like them on the smaller side so I use two tablespoons of the batter for every cookie but make sure you leave about two inches between each cookies. You can make bigger cookies or smaller depending on what you like.

Bake for 18 to 20 minutes but start checking at 14 minutes because they burn quickly.

Try to get a nice golden brown bottom.

Repeat till all the batter is finished and let everything cool on a wire rack.

Making the frosting is so easy but start with 1/4 cup of boiling water till you can  have a nice thick dripping consistency. You should be able to pour the frosting on the cookie not spread it like you would frost a cake.

Fill your double boiler with water over a simmering heat.

Mix the 4 cups of sifted confectioners sugar with the 1/4 cup of hot water and add the vanilla.

Mix till it is smooth.

Add the corn syrup and this will give the frosting a nice gloss.

Remember not to add too much water or else it will be too drippy.

Frost half the cookie on the flat side of the cookie.

Melt the chocolate and cocoa together in the remaining frosting over a double boiler.

If the frosting gets too thick, you may need just a teaspoon or two more of hot water.

Frost the remaining half of the cookie

Let them air dry for at least 30 minutes

Keep in an air tight container.

Try not to stack them because you dont want cake crumbs on the frosting.

They look so pretty

If you are going to freeze this cookie do not frost them. The chocolate frosting gets cloudy when they are frozen. The taste is there but the aren’t as pretty.

Chicken Tarragon

5 Sep

unnamed (62)

I always go for the basics when it is a chilly day and I want comfort food.

My favorite cookbook is Better Crocker’s International Cookbook.

This is her recipe with a few changes

This can be served with noodles, rice, quinoa or baked in a pie shell or just a big bowl if you do not want to eat carbs.

3 tablespoons canola oil

2 1/2 pounds of boneless, skinless chicken thighs

One can[14 ounces] of chicken broth

One tablespoon chopped fresh tarragon or one teaspoon dried tarragon

4 sliced carrots

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon black pepper

One bay leaf

8 ounces sliced mushrooms

One chopped large onion

2 cloves garlic

2 stalks chopped celery

Two yellow chopped squash

One zucchini chopped squash

1/2 cup white wine

1/2 cup half and half

3 tablespoons flour

1 egg yolk

salt to taste

Heat three tablespoons oil in a large frying pan

Season the chicken with salt and pepper

Place in the frying pan and just brown slightly on both sides.

Add the can of chicken broth, carrots, tarragon, bay leaf, salt and pepper.

Bring to a boil.

Cover and decrease the heat to simmer for 30 minutes

Add the mushrooms, celery, squash, onions and garlic.

Heat to a boil

Cover and decrease heat to simmer another fifteen minutes

Take all the meat and vegetables out of the pan.

Discard the bay leaf.

Leave the liquid in the pan and add the wine.

Reduce the broth so you have about two to three cups and bring to a boil.

Mix the egg yolk, 1/2 and 1/2 and flour together

Add to the liquid and reduce the heat.

Stir till all is incorporated and the liquid turns to this velvet sauce.

Add the chicken and vegetables

Serve it with pride.

 

 

 

Fish Chowder

25 Aug

unnamed (61)

This has to be the the most delicious meal ever.

Now that I am old I love soup so I make it a lot.

I wait for the cod or haddock to go on sale, make a big pot and freeze the leftovers.

2 pounds of cod cut into 1/2 inch to one inch pieces.

One small package of diced pancetta or 4 slices of bacon.

I prefer the pancetta.

One tablespoon butter

One diced large onion

One to two stalks of diced celery with the top greens

48 ounces of good chicken broth

16 ounces half and half

One cup of whole milk

6 potatoes, cut into 1/2 inch cubes and cooked in salted water. If the skin on the potato is thin I usually keep it on.

One cup of instant mashed potato flakes

Two big handfuls of fresh baby spinach

One teaspoon ground black pepper

2  chicken bouillon cubes, crushed

Boil the potatoes in the salted water, drain and set aside.

Heat the one tablespoon of oil and add the pancetta.

Cook till you have a nice brown color.

Take out of the pan and set aside.

Add the tablespoon of butter, celery and onion in the same pot.

Cook till everything is soft but not brown.

Add the broth, drained potatoes and pancetta and bring to a slow boil.

Lower the heat and add the cod and let it cook for five minutes.

Add the milk and 1/2 and 1/2.

Cook till everything is hot.

Add the bouillon and pepper then the potato flakes.

Stir gently to mix the flakes into the soup.

It will thicken the soup right away.

Taste to adjust your salt but with the bouillon cubes you probably will not need any more salt.

Put the spinach into the chowder just before you are serving it.

I cant believe what a big bowl I ate.

Garnish with shrimp, popcorn or croutons.

Nicks Peppers and Tomatoes

23 Aug

unnamed (60)

My Dad was a great cook.

He used to dice everything by hand now I use the food processor.

This is an Italian relish, salsa or sauce. Take your pick.

Ten cloves garlic.

One teaspoon salt

Five red peppers and five green peppers

Two to three jalapeño depending on how spicy you like it.

I usually use two and it just has a kick but my kids like it hotter.

Two small cans of tomato sauce

One level teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon salt

Six tablespoons olive oil

Heat the oil in a large frying pan.

Take out your food processor

First process the garlic and salt

Wash and dry all the peppers.

Remove the stem. white pith and all the seeds and cut the pepper into chunks.

Put about three peppers in the processor at a time and process till diced.

Pour into the hot oil and keep the heat to medium.

Repeat with the remaining peppers.

I use the entire jalapeño except for the stem because the seeds have a lot of heat

Let all the peppers cook for about ten minutes till they soften up.

Add the tomato sauce, garlic powder and salt.

Let this all simmer till the tomato sauce starts to thicken.

You must stir often.

Adjust your salt.

Serve it with crackers as a salsa, mix it with your eggs and cheese or serve it with fish or meat.

I use it as my cheat snack with low calorie crackers.

This freezes great.