Thursday, January 31, 2008

Try some citrus desserts!

I am back from a great vacation in Hawaii. That is Honolulu, Oahu and Lahaina, Maui. Still in jet-lag as Sunday rolled into Tuesday in nothing flat. Everything seemed to be with pineapple and macadamia nuts so I enjoyed. I also tried fruitbread, purple sweet potato, poi and Korean noodle soup(ugh on the last two.) Finally got a grilled hamburger with some good fries at the airport that brought me back to the mainland.
Anyway today I came across a blog by Smitten Kitchen with a list of citrus desserts to link to. The list is after a colorful array of candied grapefruit peels pictures. My favorite was the lemon bars so I may try them this afternoon. I also want to try the espresso-chocolate-shortbread-cookies/ by Dorie Greenspan. I love this site as I am always surprised each time I read it.

Monday, January 14, 2008

Slow-Cooker Recipes

I got an email this morning from BHG showing 2 slideshows on slow cooking recipes. With the weather changing here in the south, I am always looking for goodies for those really cold days. The first one is for soups . The other one is for dinners and desserts . Now I realize these recipes can feed a load of folks but there are some good ideas here. With the soups you can always freeze the leftovers. Right now I am defrosting some vegetable soup from the last cold snap. Stay warm.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Your Own Steak Sauce

Now that the holiday recipes are over with, let's look at what we can do to improve our meals as well as our eating habits. For the latter it seems nutritionous meals are being touted by eating a balanced meal and what makes up the major food groups. That I will touch on another day.
Right now I want to share a great steak sauce by Chef John. As he says, "no more bottles, make some homemade sauce." Here is a simplified version:
· 1/2 cup cold water
· 1/4 cup raisins preferably white
· 1/2 cup aged balsamic vinegar. (aged because it tends to be a higher quality.
· 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
· 1/4 cup ketchup. (Gives us a nice color, sweetness and acidity.)
· 1/4 cup Dijon mustard. (Don't substitute or you won't get the same product.)
· a pinch of cayenne for some heat (optional)
· 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
· 1 garlic clove cut in half. Don't crush it.
Combine the Steak Sauce Ingredients
Mix and cook on low simmer heat for 15 minutes. When I say low simmer, I mean we want the bubbles just breaking the surface.
After 15 minutes, strain this through a fine mesh strainer. Squeeze out all the juice.
Let this cool completely. If you season this hot, it will taste different when it's cold.
Once it's cool, then taste for salt and pepper. So adjust for your own taste.
Serve the Steak Sauce
Visit Chef John's video to get his take on the sauce.
SpiceAdviceChart--I found a valuable chart to use when cooking with spices that you may wish to keep handy while cooking. The spices are listed with foods they would enhance. Sometimes you just need that extra "bam" for your dish and maybe you could search thru this list.
COOKING ERROR REMEDIES. How many of us have found our dish ruined by too much salt or too hightly seasoned? Here is a site that might save the day. I found some ideas here that could help me out and maybe you also.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

The holiday eating is over.

Well the holiday eating binge is over and I still feel stuffed yet I still reach for another ginger cookie. Not only did I make cookies, I also got them from Santa. Duh!
The picture above is something to try the next time you have mashed potatoes. Chef John at Food Wishes suggests combining potatoes with cauliflower. Makes for an interesting dish. Wander over and view his video and maybe you might want to try it.
I still keep finding good cookie recipes. This one is called
Chocolate-Dipped Shortbread Logs. It is found at in their cookie section. I like shortbread as is but dipped in chocolate just makes it better. Really any cookie is good dipped in chocolate. Right! It really is a simple cookie that can go well with a hot cup of tea on those really cold days.