What have you been up to in the kitchen?

Wednesday, December 28, 2005

Remnants pizza

So the fridge is brimming with leftovers, and basic turkey, mashed potatos and cranberries is getting a bit old.

Grab a bag of TJ's 'Almost Whole-Wheat Pizza Dough'. Shred some meat off of the turkey carcass that is taking up most of the bottom half of the fridge. Extricate the almost-empty jar of pasta sauce from behind the shelf-o-condiments. Take several leaves of fresh basil and chop them coarsely. Halve a few handfuls of cherry tomatos (and still wonder what you're going to do with the rest of the econo pack that fills most of the veg drawer).

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Lightly oil a cookie sheet or pizza stone. Roll the dough in a liberal amount of flour (I'm using whole wheat these days) and knead with knuckles into approx. a 12 inch round. Spread with what will turn out to be too much sauce.

Crumble the barely-a-serving-left chunks of cheese you've accumulated in the back of the cheese drawer. I went with feta and goat cheese, but I don't think there's a cheese that isn't good on pizza.

Top pizza with everything. Feel free to throw together any combination of cheese, sauce, veg and meat you feel is appropriate. While I wanted to clean out more of the fridge, I decided that pate was not likely to be a good choice. Be as artistic as you like with the scattering of your toppings...make your pizza pretty.

Bake pizza in oven for 8-10 minutes - if you use too much sauce like me, leave it in an extra couple minutes to crisp the crust. Remove from oven, cool a little, slice, eat. Go back for seconds.

Saturday, December 24, 2005

M&Egg Nog


His favorite Holiday Beverage

Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Cherry Mistmas

Delicious Jose Cuervo Christmas cookies, recipe sent to me by my mother

1 cup of water
1 tsp baking soda
1 cup of sugar
1 tsp salt
1 cup of brown sugar
4 large eggs
1 cup nuts
2 cups of dried fruit
1 bottle Jose Cuervo Tequila

Sample the Cuervo to check quality. Take a large bowl, check the Cuervo again, to be sure it is of the highest quality, pour one level cup and drink.

Turn on the electric mixer... Beat one cup of butter in a large fluffy bowl. Add one teaspoon of sugar. Beat again. At this point it's best to make sure the Cuervo is still OK, try another cup..just in case.

Turn off the mixerer thingy. Break 2 leggs and add to the bowl and chuck in the cup of dried fruit, Pick the frigging fruit off the floor.. Mix on the turner. If the fried druit gets stuck in the beaterers just pry it loose with a drewscriver. Sample the Cuervo to check for tonsisticity.

Next, sift two cups of salt, or something. Who giveshz a sheet. Check the Jose Cuervo. Now shift the lemon juice and strain your nuts. Addone table. Add a spoon of sugar, or somefink. Whatever you can find. Greash the oven.

Turn the cake tin 360 degrees and try not to fall over. Don't forget to beat off the turner. Finally, throw the bowl through the window, finish the Cose Juervo and make sure to put the stove in the dishwasher.


Monday, December 19, 2005

Monday night resourcefulness

I'm always talking about getting my act together and planning meals like my mother does so know, to make better use of my food budget and eat more balanced meals. But mostly because standing shivering in the glow of the fridge trying to piece together a meal from random ingredients is not much fun after 8 hours of work.

I tried Cody's crab wontons a few weeks ago (with mixed success...I think i used too much cream cheese) and have had some of the 'wrappers' leftover in the fridge. Grabbed some tomatos, pesto, and feta (these are about half of the items remaining in the fridge) and after chopping the tomatos, mixed equal portions of each in a bowl. Using egg on the edges of the wrappers, I put what was usually too much filling in the center, folded it over, and then bent the corners back and twisted them around - my approximation of The Joy of Cooking's advice on fresh pasta. Throw the pasta in boiling water, sautee some chicken in rosemary and garlic, pour some wine, and I think dinner is served.

Homage To Trader Joe's

I love Trader Joe's. LOVE!! One finally opened here at my end of Virginia...and all I gotta say is WOOOHOOO!!

So tell me:
What is YOUR favorite TJ's recipe?

Thursday, December 15, 2005

Better than sex cake

What you need:

one box of devils food cake mix
one can of eagle brand sweetened condensed milk.
one jar of caramel or butterscotch ice cream topping
one big vat of cool whip
6, 7, 8 skor bars, (heath is ok-ish)

What you do

Put skore bars in freezer. make the cake in a 13 x 9 or so pan. When you take the cake out, lightly stab the top with a fork so the top is sort of broken up and crumply. If dont want your cake goo-ey, wait for it to cool. Otherwise, pour on condensed milk all over. Pour ice cream topping all over. Put in fridge for an hour or so. Then take it out and cover with lots of cool whip. Then take the skor bars out of the freezer. and crumple them up while still in wrappers. Spread the skor bar chunks on top. The more the better. put in fridge for a bit.

When you eat it, your toes will curl.

Stuffed Camel

Stuffed Camel

1 whole camel, medium size
1 whole lamb, large size
20 whole chickens, medium size
60 eggs
12 kilos rice
2 kilos pine nuts
2 kilos almonds
1 kilo pistachio nuts
110 gallons water
5 pounds black pepper
Salt to taste

Skin, trim and clean camel (once you get over the hump), lamb and chicken. Boil until tender. Cook rice until fluffy. Fry nuts until brown and mix with rice. Hard boil eggs and peel. Stuff cooked chickens with hard boiled eggs and rice. Stuff the cooked lamb with stuffed chickens. Add more rice. Stuff the camel with the stuffed lamb and add rest of rice. Broil over large charcoal pit until brown. Spread any remaining rice on large tray and place camel on top of rice. Decorate with boiled eggs and nuts. Serves friendly crowd of 80-100.

Friday, December 09, 2005

Apple-Cranberry Crisp

I haven't made this, but I know how much people enjoy making Apple Crisp so I thought Apple-Cranberry might be a good addition...

Ingredients for filling
12 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored and sliced
8 oz. fresh or frozen cranberries
Juice of 1 lemon
1/3 cup brandy
1/3 cup brown sugar, packed
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 tablespoons whole wheat pastry flour

Ingredients for topping
1 1/2 cup old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup toasted wheat germ
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar, packed
1/3 cup canola oil or grapeseed oil
1/3 cup maple syrup

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
To make filling, toss apples in a large bowl with cranberries, lemon juice, brandy, brown sugar, cinnamon and flour. Place mixture in a 10 x 8-inch baking dish.
To make topping, mix rolled oats, wheat germ, salt, cinnamon, brown sugar, oil and syrup. Spread over apple mixture. Cover dish with foil, and bake 20 minutes. Uncover, and bake 40 minutes longer, until apples are soft.

Makes 12 servings

Thursday, December 08, 2005

My Gross Confession

Ok, so I haven't gone grocery shopping in...well, forever. And I am sort of avoiding it until after my xmas vacay back home. Which means I have to be creative with dinner. And by creative, I mean lazy.

Tonight for dinner:
Leftover pasta salad
baked beans I found in the back of the cupboard
spinach (raw, with a touch of dressing)
little ice cream nuggets (like bon bons but smaller

I would have made mac and cheese, but I don't have any milk, and I don't think the cheese sauce will dissolve in pure butter.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Christmas Cranberry Tea

1 quart of Cranberry Juice Cocktail
1 quart of water
1/2 cup of honey
1 Tablespoon Instant Tea
6 cloves
1 cinnamon stick
1 sliced orange
heat and serve.


Sunday, December 04, 2005

This soup needs a name

This is a soup I made of things I had in the house.

1 box of trader joe's creamy potatoe leek soup
beef bacon
ground turkey
frozen corn
russet potato

Put the soup in a pot on low heat. Toss the potato in the microwave to cook for 6 minutes. Cook 4 slices of beef bacon (bought because I wanted to try it out) until crispy. Save the bacon fat in the pan. (This is the good part) Cube the potato (skin it if you don't like the skin) and drop it in the pot. Add "some" frozen corn from the freezer. Pause to wonder how long corn has been in freezer, and if it will go bad. Brown your ground turkey in the bacon fat. Dice bacon and toss into pot. Dice chives and add to concoction. Note that the soup is already flavored so you might not want to add extra seasonings. Lastly add the ground turkey and let the whole thing simmer until it starts to smell good. For me, it was about as long as it took to unload the dishwasher and wash the rest of the dishes. Serve. Eat.

I created this thinking of what a good baked potato with all the fixings would be like in a soup form. Tasted pretty damn good. Chowder-y. But without the milk. Suggestions for names?