Archive | September, 2013

Slow down Saturday

28 Sep

Everyone is in a different place and I only want to cook once.

The weather is great and  I might as well take advantage of the grill.

Back to delicious basics. A good hamburger with garden tomatoes. Can’t get any better then that.

Make nachos with the leftover chili but use french fries instead of chips. Frozen fries aren’t bad.

Relax….it’s the weekend

fast food friday

28 Sep

Friday nights always were crazy. Getting out of school, going to a game or out with friends, Everyone wanted to eat and run,  Chili always made them stop and eat.

2 pounds of ground beef or ground turkey

1/2 pound of sirloin steak -diced into 1/4 inch pieces

2 tablespoons canola oil

one large chopped onion

2 packages of packaged chili mix. Just buy the regular one and not the hot or extra hot variety.

1 can rotelle tomatoes

1 can diced tomatoes

1 can of tomato sauce

1 can baked beans

2 cans  red kidney beans with liquid

1 can pink kidney beans with liquid

1 jalapeno pepper , washed and put into the chili whole. You can poke holes in it but don’t cut it. The chili will be too hot.

Brown  all the meat,oil and onion. Drain off the oil. Add everything else and simmer till everything is hot. The longer it simmers, the better it is.

You can also add grated  or chopped carrots .

Toppings are the best. Try grated cheese any kind.  I like mexican mix or a good cheddar. Use any of these, onions cilantro, sour cream, avacado,chopped tomato, black olives and chopped hot peppers and tortilla chips.

Save the leftover for the Saturday cookout as a topping on hot dogs

Thirsty Thursday

27 Sep

Growing up in Brooklyn was fabulous. The food was unbelievable and there were a couple of foods that always made me think of my childhood. One drink was called an egg cream. It did not have an egg in it which to me made it more delicious. Easy and fast.

you need:

one 8 to 10 ounce glass

3 tablespoons of good chocolate syrup

1/2 cup of milk

Mix well

Add cold plain seltzer slowly to fill the glass then stir. Foam will form on the top.

I always drank two.

Mouth watering Wednesday

25 Sep

My wonderful neighbor gave me a ton of her fabulous garden tomatoes.Time to enjoy

I love grilled pizza and make extra because it disappears.

Get one pound of store bought pizza dough

Four large tomatoes-sliced

one teaspoon of garlic powder

one large onion-sliced  this is optional but I love onion

8 basil leaves

1 teaspoon oregano

salt and pepper

olive oil

Optional toppings: onion, peppers,,sausage,chicken, shrimp, spinach,feta mozzarella,ricotta or any grated cheese.

Cut the dough into 1/2 pound balls. start stretching the dough till it is about 6X11. Paint the dough with olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Heat your grill or griddle till hot. Carefully place your dough on the grill, oiled side down. Don’t touch it till you see it light brown on the bottom. Turn over and grill lightly. Take off the grill and cook the rest the same way. This can be done a day ahead.

Put your pizza dough on a cookie sheet and start with your toppings.

First heat your oven to 450 degrees.

Paint a thin layer of olive oil on the dough

Layer the tomatoes, season with garlic,salt,pepper,basil,oregano and whatever other toppings you would like to use.

Drizzle olive oil over everything.  Don’t overdue it.

Bake till pizza is hot and cheese is melted. About ten minutes

I started putting a handful of salad on my pizza and I love it after the pizza is baked.

Fabulous meal for a couple of dollars. Put the twenty dollars you saved away for something special. You deserve it. Enjoy

The salad I make is just any greens with a little lemon, olive oil and salt

Chicken Tuesday

24 Sep

Time to think about tonight and the rest of the week.

The easiest is chicken.

Today I am going to roast one chicken and make soup with another.

The chickens are $.88 a pound at Big Y.

Buy two big fat chickens. Wash them in and out and pat dry.

Put one chicken in a big soup pot and cover it with water. Add one tablespoon of salt Let it come to a boil then simmer it for two to three hours till the meat falls off the bones. Set aside and let it cool then strain the entire pot of liquid . Put the broth into a container and chill until all the fat is on the top and you can scoop it off and throw it away. In the meantime take all the meat off the chicken discarding , the skin and bones. I love boiled chicken so I have to try not to eat too much. My grandchild loves the chicken too so I make little snack bags for him when he visits.You can stop now and continue in a couple of days. Refrigerate  and wrap everything.

Start with a clean pot and take 1/2 stick of butter and chop 2 stalks of celery, 6 carrots and one big onion, saute untill they are soft but not brown . Then add the defatted broth and the chicken. You may want to add a couple  of chicken cubes for more flavor.

Sometimes I add a small turnip, it gives it a different flavor.

You can also add small beef or turkey meatballs and spinach for Italian wedding soup.

Options for pasta is noodles, orzo, rice, tortellini or whatever you have on hand .

Always cook the pasta in a separate pot or your soup will be stew in one hour.

If your soup isn’t tasty enough or if it gets too thick, never hesitate to use canned chicken broth. It is a staple in my house.

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Roasted Chicken

Either use a foil pan or foil your own . Helps with clean up.

Wash and dry the chicken, Squeeze the juice of one lemon all over the bird . Peel one small onion , slice it in half, sprinkle garlic powder,salt, pepper and paprika all over inside and out being pretty generous with the garlic powder. Put the onion and lemon inside the bird. Place in the pan with the breast side down for two hours at 350 degrees or until the leg can be pulled off easily. Never eat pink chicken.

Put a couple of baked potatoes in the oven at the same time . Put some corn in a pot to boil.

If you are really feeling ambitious, slice up a couple of your touched apples  because we never waste anything. Keep the skin on. Melt 1/2 stick of butter in a pan and fry the apples till just a little soft. I like mine crunchy. Then add 1/2 tablespoon  of brown sugar for every apple then1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon and one tablespoon of lemon juice. You can also add some raisens. This is not alot of work  and it is such a delicious extra. My husband loved it.

At Valentines Day I would add the red cinnamon hearts and eliminate the cinnamon and decrease the sugar. Very red and pretty.

Take the leftover chicken off the bones and save for chicken salad, stirfry or sandwiches. This is so much better for you then deli meat.

It’s Monday

23 Sep

Time to get serious and cook something.

Take one pound of pasta, 4 cloves of garlic ,one large bag of chopped broccoli and 1/2 cup oil(good olive oil or canola oil if you want it lighter)

Cook the pasta three minutes earlier then the package directions. Add the frozen broccoli to the pasta and cook for two or three minutes  all together.Keep one cup of water out and strain the rest. Lightly brown the garlic in the oil.  Add the pasta to the garlic oil . Add the one cup of remaining pasta water and toss. Garnish with red peper flakes and good pecerino romano cheese.

This takes maybe 15 minutes. Easy clean up.

Make sure you salt the pasta water. If you don’t you will be adding a ton of salt after it is cooked.

The house smells great and if everyone eats it you do not have to worry about garlic breath.

Sunday, Sunday, Sunday

22 Sep

Special Sunday

I have to contol myself because I wake up and want to cook everything

Getting up late and having huge breakfasts. Sending my husband out for hot bagels. He would eat three ,four or more then swear he would eat nothing for the rest of the day.  Except for the coffe cake that came out of the oven about ten a.m.  Followed by a light lunch of whatever roast I cooked  or just a few meatballs from the gravy on the stove.

After that he was not going to eat another thing ,till supper got on the table.He could never resist pasta and always enjoyed every bite.

There was a time when all the kids where home and getting  Chinese food on Sunday. It was so good. Take out is not bad. Pizza also was a regular.

I think it is important to make the house smell of something mouthwatering.

Cooking is great but on the Sunday it should be a relazing time in the kitchen. There is always Monday.