Thursday, December 23, 2010

Potato and Parsnip Scalloped Casserole

I really love Sunset Magazine but this recipe needed to be stepped up a bit and the addition of pancetta and black pepper really enhances the flavors of the root veggies.  Who can eat potatoes without pepper?  The original recipe can be found in the December, 2010 Sunset Magazine on page 59.

2 cups heavy cream
1 tsp. kosher salt
1 TBSP ground black pepper
1/2 tsp. nutmeg (for best flavor, grind you own)
3 large white potatoes, peeled and sliced thin
2 large parsnips, peeled and sliced thin
1 large onion, sliced thin
1 celery root, peeled, halved and sliced and diced
1 package pancetta, diced
2 cups fontina cheese, shredded

Preheat the oven to 325.  In a saucepan bring cream, salt, and nutmeg to simmer.  Remove from heat and set aside.

Lay 1/2 of the potatoes in a greased or oiled baking dish, top with parsnips, onion, 1/2 of the diced pancetta, and celery root.  Top with 1/2 of the cheese.  Add the rest of the parsnips, potatoes, pancetta and celery root.  Pour warm cream over entire casserole.  Sprinkle with the remaining cheese.

Bake until bubbly and golden brown about 1 1/4 hours at 325.  Let sit for 10 minutes before serving.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Judy's 3 - 2 1 - 1/2 Banana Bread

I've been waiting for a special time to make my beautiful cousin's banana bread and this is it!  We are off to Hawaii over Christmas to get warm and soak up some rays.  In thinking of "plane food" I thought of Judy's Banana Bread---can't get into trouble for having liquids (was harassed last time for my packet of soy sauce to go with my sushi!)  This is a straight-up recipe and easy to make in a matter of minutes.  Because we are en route to Hawaii, I used macadamia nuts instead of pecans or walnuts.  Judy says that you can add virtually anything you like in the way of cranberries, blueberries, nuts and etc.  Please note that the ingredients given are NOT the order they are added.

Judy and I, Durango Colorado

Judy Simmons' 3-2-1-1/2 Banana Bread

Preheat the oven to 400.  Grease or spray one large loaf pan, 2 smaller or 4 really small loaf pans.

3 bananas, smashed
2 cups of flour
1 cup of sugar
1/2 cup buttery Crisco

1 egg
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. cinnamon
*Optional:  Nuts, cranberries---anything goes

Combine the bananas, egg, sugar, Crisco, baking soda and cinnamon until moist.  Add flour 1/2 cup at a time.  Batter will be thick.

Add any other ingredients you want, i.e., nuts, berries, etc.

Spoon the batter into loaf pan(s).  Bake at 400 for 15 minutes, do not open the door but turn down the heat to 350 and bake an additional 40-45 minutes.

Remove from the oven and place pans on their sides.  Slide a sharp knife along all sides and turn over.  Wrap in foil and do not slice or freeze for at least 15 minutes.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Goodnight Waffles

NOPE!  again not my recipe.  This blue ribbon recipe came with my Waring Pro Waffle Maker.  This recipe takes quite a bit of prep time--maybe 45 minutes up front, another 15 in the morning and then your baking time.  But, oh is it ever worth it!  |Without fail, this recipe elicits rave reviews.  "The best waffle I have ever eaten!",  "It's so light!  I don't get it", "OMG, this is heaven."
  All comments are correct, but the final product does not come without effort.  Be patient.  This recipe is for people you really love. I usually double the recipe but am giving you the original makes 6 good sized waffles.

1/2 cup lukewarm (105 F water)
1 TBSP sugar
2 1/4 tsps. active dry yeast (or 1 yeast packet)
2 cups whole milk, warmed to 105
1/2 cup unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 tsp. salt (I like kosher and it will break down over night)
2 cups flour
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/4 tsp. baking soda

The night before, or at LEAST 8 hours before--combine the water, sugar and yeast.  Let this sit and marry for 10 minutes until frothy and happy.  Stir in the warm milk, butter and salt.  Beat in the flour until smooth on low (I use my old fashioned hand-mixer instead of my kitchen aide)  Cover the bowl or wrap tightly with plastic wrap.  Let it sit overnight at least 8 hours.  DO NOT REFRIGERATE!

In the morning you may have an alien on your counter top!  All the better!  Preheat the waffle iron.  To your batter you will now want to:

Stir in the eggs, vanilla, and baking soda.  Pour by scant (about 1/4 cup fulls into waffle iron maybe a bit more).  I typically provide the following options prior to baking:  Macadamia Nuts, Pecans, or Plain?  Add these to the iron as requested.

Yum!  Serve with any or all of the following:

Apples, Bananas, Cherry Pie Filling, Whipped Cream, Blueberry Sauce, Etc......

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Beer Can Chicken and Spicy Peppercorn Rub

Spicy Peppercorn Rub Ingredients
Rub Ingredients:
1 1/2 TBSP Paprika
1 1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
1 1/2 tsp. mustard powder
1/4 tsp. ground sage
1 TBSP Voodoo Seasoning (or Cajun Seasoning)
2 tsp. kosher salt
1 TBSP. pepper

You will also need:
1 chicken
1 12 oz. can of beer (regular lager or stout)
Olive oil

Mix your rub ingredients together.  Wash and dry chicken with paper towels.  Massage olive oil over chicken, dust outside and inside of chicken generously with rub.  Pour out about 1/4 cup of beer and poke several holes around the top of the can to allow for even distribution of vapor/steam.

Place bottom of chicken over the can and set in a deep dish container if you want to catch the juices.

Two ways to cook your bird:

1) In the oven at 350 for 1 1/2 hours
2) On the preheated grill for 1 1/2 hours

Serve with a side salad and couscous.

Please leave feedback and/or any suggestions, tips or ideas you have about this recipe.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Carne Adovada

I am sure there are many people out there that make this fabulous dish much better than I do, but this recipe has never failed to please our own palates.  However, with that said, be forewarned that this dish requires an enormous amount of preparation time and patience.  First, you must make your red chile sauce.  You can follow a typical red chile enchilada sauce but add chile pequin (crushed chile) to the final stage.  Let the sauce cool. Then it is just wait, wait, and wait some more until you can cook.

Red Chile Sauce
1-2 lbs boneless pork, cubed about 1"

When sauce is cool, mix the cubed pork with the sauce and marinate for 2-3 days in the refrigerator.  I use my vacuum sealer to remove all air and get a really good marinade going on.  When ready to bake, add about 3/4 cup water to the meat/chile and place in a baking dish.  (I like to use my stoneware, and you CANNOT add cold ingredients to the pan once you start the baking process--so make sure you have enough wet ingredients to begin with) 

Preheat the oven to 250 and bake for 2 1/2 hours.  Increase heat to 300 and bake for another 2 hours (or until the meat begins to fall apart).

To Serve:
12 Corn Tortillas, softened in oil
Cheddar cheese
1/2 cilantro, chopped
1/2 cup diced white onions
1 large tomato, diced

Serve with warm corn tortillas, cheese, cilantro, onions and tomatoes.  It doesn't hurt to add a Dos Equis or a Pacifico to go with.

Friday, December 3, 2010

Salmon Chili

I really didn't expect so many people to ask me for this recipe.  I mean really!  Salmon and chili, in the same sentence?.   I expected to be met with more opposition.  Jayne Naze was the first person to suggest serving salmon in chili.  I tried it, liked it, tried it again and again and it was good.  She was right.  There is No reason salmon cannot be a great substitute for meat in chili.  Change it up as you like...but here is my recipe:

1 lb. Salmon (skinned, deboned, cut into cubes)
3 TBSP oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 tsp. garlic chopped
1 jalapeno, chopped fine
14 oz. Green Chile (I use frozen, but in will need to buy canned and chop it)
2 TBSP Cumin
2 TBSP Mexican Oregano

2 cans of diced tomatoes
2 cans of chicken stock
1 can each of:
 white beans
white kidney beans
black beans
red kidney beans
soy beans
pinto beans

Additional can of white beans should be pureed in a food processor and added to thicken.

Boil 4 cups of water.  Add cubed salmon (yes, I try and take out all bones) and cook for 3 minutes.  Remove from water to drain.  In a stockpot with oil, cook onion, garlic, jalapeno and green chile until soft (about 4 minutes)  Add seasonings, tomatoes, stock, beans and let cook for about 40 minutes.  Add pureed white beans to thicken soup.  The only thing better than this is to marry this soup with my own Aunt Marcia's Cornbread.

Aunt Marcia's Cornbread

1 cup cornmeal
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
4 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. salt
2 eggs
1 C milk
1/4 C oil

Mix all of this together and bake at 425 in an oiled cast iron skillet for about 24 minutes.  OH MY!  This is not only the one and only best cornbread recipes you will ever make....but also the best comfort food crumbled up with milk before bedtime.  Thanks Aunt Marcia and Mom!