Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Yummy Meatloaf

1.5 lbs low fat ground beef
1 cup oats (preferably "Old Fashioned" or "regular")
1 egg
1 small onion, chopped
1/2 cup ketchup
1.5 teaspoon salt
dash pepper

Mix together until well blended.  Pat into loaf pan.

Bake @ 350° for 45-60 minutes.  With ~5 minutes to go top with ketchup swirls.

I serve with mashed potatoes or cabbage.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Food Storage Chili

I love this chili because it's quick and helps me use up my stored canned foods.  All cans are 15 oz unless otherwise specified.

1 lb lean ground beef
1 large onion
1 can kidney beans
1 can pinto beans
1 can refried beans
1 can corn
1 can chopped tomatoes
1 can tomato sauce
1 cup water
1 4 oz can green chilis
1 pkg taco seasoning
1 pkg Hidden Valley Ranch dressing (NOT buttermilk) dry mix

Chop onion and brown with ground beef.  Add remaining ingredients (don't drain anything).  Bring to boil over medium heat.  Cook for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Tuesday, October 05, 2010


Sorry for so much Japanese food, but really it's the only exciting thing I make. Otherwise it's spaghetti and food of that ilk. I'm trying to make sure I can make Japanese food so that my kids will have a taste of 'home' when we move to the US one day. Plus, Edamame tends to eat favor Japanese food over American.

Here goes!

Oyakodon literally is Mother/child rice bowl. It is egg and chicken. I wonder if that wouldn't be kosher.

Step 1: cook some short grain rice up, I prefer brown rice. I plead with you not to use Uncle Ben's

Step 2: Make magical Japanese sauce.
1 1/2 cups soup stock(preferably kelp or mushroom...not american style please)
3 Tbsp. sugar
2 Tbsp soy sauce
3 Tbsp. mirin(sweet japanese cooking wine)

Then heat up and disolve the sugar

Step 3: Add an onion that has been cut into 1/4 vertical strips. Let that cook until the onions are clear and tender

Step 4: Add 3/4 ~ 1 lb. of deboned chicken thigh cut into bite sized pieces and let cook covered. Check after a few minutes and flip the chicken pieces over and cook a tad bit longer.

Step 5: Lightly beat 4~6 eggs. Don't over do it, you need to still be able to distinguish the yolk for the white. Pour 3/4 of the eggs over the onions and chicken and cover for a bit. When it is almost cooked add the last little bit and cook just a bit more. Turn off the heat just before it is completely cooked. You serve it still slightly runny and let the hot rice cook it the rest of the way. Same egg caution as before, know where your eggs are from.

Step 6: Eat up!

We had it with miso soup and a salad, I need to tweak the dressing recipe before I share it. The kids had seen the Cooking with Dog video about Omu-rice before hand and begged for ketchup on it. They loved it, but that's because we all know that ketchup has chemicals in it that are highly addictive to children under 10. I have no idea what it is, but Ed will put ketchup on anything almost.

Friday, October 01, 2010


Yet another installment of crazy Japanese food hour. Sukiyaki is one of my favorite dishes, but tends to be considered fancier(at least on the restaurant scale). It's also a bit dangerous with kids around, open flame at the table and 20 month olds don't typically mix. Nonetheless I had to fulfill this craving, and found out how to make it. First a big thanks to Cooking with Dog(poor grammar not the crazy side of asian cuisine).

For the sukiyaki sauce you will need
3 tablespoons sugar
1/2 cup soy sauce
1/2 cup mirin or saké
1 tablespoon vegetable or beef stock powder(not bullion...the flavor is way too different)

You bring it to a boil and turn the heat down

then add

thinly slice beef(1/2 to 1 lbs.)
wide chopped napa cabbage
diagonally cut leek
a few cross sections of a yellow onion
seared tofu cut into large cubes(just plain firm if you can't find seared tofu)
diagonally sliced carrot(about 1/4 inch)
Komatsuna(Japanese mustard spinach) wide chopped...I couldn't fit it in the pan.
Shiitake mushrooms(6-12, stems off, cut a pretty star in the top if you want to)
Maitake mushrooms(1 bunch, bottom cut off, break it up into small clumps...I might add more next time)

This usually calls for Konjak noodles, but I put udon noodles in later.

let it boil and simmer for 10-15 minutes. I ended up adding a few cups of water so that the broth wouldn't be too thick.

Then you can eat it, and if you KNOW where the eggs are from, dip it in a raw beaten egg. It seems freaky, but tastes soooooo good. Only do this if you are absolutely sure of where the eggs are from, like your hippie, chicken raising neighbor.

We dig noodles, so once everything was cooked, we added some precooked udon noodles, and then ate up.

Dish it out, and enjoy. This way you don't burn your small child at a fancy restaurant, and still get to enjoy this great flavor. I used a normal deep sauce pan. It does need to be deep though.

Good luck, and feel free to ask questions.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies

Let me start by saying that I don't like pumpkin.  I don't like pumpkin pie, fudge, ice cream, shakes, soup.....  I don't like pumpkin in any form.  Except, these cookies.  I love them.  I want to eat them for breakfast.  And all day long.

1 cup shortening
2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 (15 oz) can pumpkin puree
1.5 teaspoons baking soda
1.5 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
4 cups flour
1.5 cups chocolate chips (or more if you like extra chocolate)

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Grease cookie sheets.
2.  In a large bowl, cream together shortening and sugar until smooth.  Beat in eggs, one at a time.  Stir in the vanilla and pumpkin until well blended.  Add remaining ingredients as listed.  Drop by tablespoonfuls onto cookie sheet.
3.  Bake for 12 minutes or until edges begin to brown.  Let cool slightly before removing from cookie sheet.
4.  ENJOY!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Queen Scarlett's foil packet dinner

So I made this today, and mentioned it on my post here. Hope you all enjoy! Also - please send in your favorite camping recipes! Cheers!

Queen Scarlett's foil packet dinner

Organic ground beef
Garlic flavored olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
Onions, diced
Carrots, sliced
Celery, sliced
Potatoes, sliced
Tomatoes, diced
Cream of mushroom
Worcestershire sauce
Packet of Lipton onion
Sour cream

Mix one can of cream of mushroom soup with about one tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce (I just swish the bottle in a circle for measurement sake), and one packet of the Lipton onion. Stir well. Set aside.

Chop, dice, slice all the veggies.

Brush garlic olive oil over foil. Add freshly ground black pepper then organic ground beef.

Top the beef with onions.

Then add potatoes, carrots, celery and tomatoes.

Then top with the cream of mushroom mixture, with a dollop of sour cream, and little more ground pepper.

Wrap the packets, label and wait with bated breath to find out how it all turns out. I think they'll need to cook it on hot coals for 20-30 min.... or whenever they are cooked.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Grandpa's BBQ sauce

This is my grandpa's BBQ sauce recipe and it is great. I've been using it to fulfill cravings, and it's been doing a great job. We usually use it for chicken, but my aunt uses it for hamburgers and steaks, and I've started using it on salad(after I've cooked the sauce).

1 C. Apple Cider Vinegar
1 C. cooking oil(I use olive oil because I have a TON from Costco)
1 tbsp. Worchestershire sauce(soy sauce is a good substitute)
1 tsp. salt
2 tsp. paprika
3 tbsp. mustard
15 dashes Tabasco sauce
1 bulb Garlic, minced (yes, a whole bulb. It blends well with time.)
1/4 to 1/2 Medium Onion, chopped fine
2 to 3 tbsp. Ketchup

Mix well and store for several hours before using.
A variation that my father likes is to use a blender to mix all the ingredients.

I also make a huge batch and freeze individual bags of chicken in the sauce, it marinates as it defrosts.


Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Killer Oreo Faux Cheesecake

I did not make this up. I got it from some random magazine that does not put their name in a footer. So when I tore the page out, I had no idea from whence it came. Way to fail, random magazine!

Oreo pie crust (you can buy them at the grocery store next to the graham cracker crusts. You could make one, but then you would have to buy Oreos, and then they would get eaten before you made the crust, thus starting a vicious Oreo circle that culminates with you just going and purchasing a crust ready-made.)

10 oz chocolate chips
1 pkg cream cheese. (8 oz. Don't cheap out and get the low-fat kind. You are fooling no one.)
1/2 c powdered sugar
2 C heavy cream
2 t vanilla

  1. Melt the chocolate chips.
  2. Beat the cream and 1/4 C powdered sugar at medium speed until firm peaks (not stiff) form.
  3. In separate bowl, beat cream cheese and remaining powdered sugar until smooth. Add in melted chocolate at low speed.
  4. Fold 1/2 of cream mix into chocolate mix. Spread into crust.
  5. Spread remaining cream mixture onto top of the pie.
  6. Refrigerate 4 hours.
If you, like me, have very little brain power in the summer-time and don't read recipes correctly sometimes, then you can also make it like this:

Steps 1 & 2 are the same
Pour everything else in the bowl and beat.
Smash it into the crust
Refrigerate 4 hours.

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Tilapia with Green Beans, Spinach and Tomatoes and Quinoa

So I follow the Food Network tweets and they had this Tilapia with Green Beans recipe one day.

I luckily had a few items and whipped it up...with some variation.

Tilapia with Green Beans, Spinach and Tomatoes and Quinoa

2 Tbl flour
2 tsp chopped fresh oregano (I used my ground and flakes in the pantry)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
Bay Seasoning
4, 6oz tilapia fillets
4 Tbl unsalted butter
1/2 lb thin green beans or haricots verts (I had a handful of green beans in the fridge)
2-3 handfuls of spinach (because I didn't have enough green beans)
2-3 cloves of garlic, diced
1 cup tomatoes - grape or cherry, halved (I just had hot I sliced them to bite-size)
Juice of 1 lemon

Combine flour, oregano in a shallow dish, season with salt and pepper, bay seasoning, paprika.

Place a large skillet over med-high heat. Dredge the fish in the flour mix, shaking off excess. Melt 3 Tbl butter in the skillet, add 2 fillets (mine is big enough I did all three) and cook until golden brown on the bottom, about 4 min. Flip and cook through, 1-2 more min. Transfer to a plate and keep warm, Repeat with remaining fillets.

Add the green beans and garlic to the skillet and cook about 1-2 min. Add in the spinach, season with salt and pepper, then add the tomatoes and cook until just softened/wilted, about 1 min. Stir in the lemon juic and d1/4 cup water, then cover and cook until the beans are tender, about 3 min. REmove from heat and stir in the remaining 1 Tbl butter until just melted.

Meanwhile I boiled some organic chicken broth (I love Pacific Natural Foods Organic Free Range Chicken Broth) and added in the Quinoa and simmered for about 10-15 min. Perfect accompaniment to this meal.

Dish up the fish and veggies and enjoy.

Spaghetti Sauce

This is a recipe I got from my friend Tracy.

I love it...and I have made some adjustments to it. You'll see my adjustments in (parentheses).

Savory Sweet Spaghetti Sauce

10 cloves of garlic
1 large onion diced
1-2 shallots (I love shallots so I like to add them in)
1 large bottle of Prego (I like Barilla - with mushrooms)
1-2 lbs ground beef, turkey or chicken (your preference)
6 SPICY Italian sausages, remove casing (I use the spicy sausage already crumbled and ready to cook from Nugget)
1 can diced Italian seasoned tomatoes
4 Tblsp Worcestershire (I always add more - base it on your taste buds - I can never get enough of Worcestershire)
3 Tbsp Beef Base (Minor's beef base - you can find it at Costco or your grocer)
1 cup Ketchup (I tend to add a bit more... I don't measure...)
4-6 Bay Leaves
3-5 sprigs of Rosemary (I added rosemary)
1-2 Tblsp Italian Seasoning
1-2 Tblsp freshly ground black pepper (I also add white pepper)
1/2 cup sugar (more or less depending on you)

Saute the garlic, onions and shallots - add in the meat (ground meat and sausages) and cook until the meat is brown.

Add in the italian seasoning, worstershire, beef base, bottle of Barilla sauce, can of diced tomatoes, ketchup, bay leaves, rosemary pepper, sugar. Heat to boiling, then reduce heat to simmer for 1.5 hours, stirring occasionally.

Taste and add more Worcestershire/beef base if you need more savory flavors. Add more cans of tomatoes if it is too sweet... and more sugar/ketchup if it's not sweet enough.

I like to serve this with mini farfalle, rotini, or spaghetti noodles.

Have fun!!!!

Penne with Spicy Tomato Cream Sauce

Penne with Spicy Tomato Cream Sauce

This is a variation on a recipe that included vodka.

1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic (I always add a couple cloves more)
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
1 28oz can crushed tomatoes
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 lb penne pasta (I liked the mini-penne) cooked/drained al dente
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
2 (3.5 oz) links sweet Italian sausage (or I like to get the Italian sausage at my local Nugget that is already crumbled and ready to go) [you could also substitute shrimp instead of sausage - note you will not need to cook the shrimp as long - do the garlic/red pepper and oil first - then add the shrimp]

In a large skillet, heat oil over med-high heat. Remove the casing from the sausage and cook, breaking up the meat until brown. Add garlic, red pepper and stir until garlic is golden brown.

Add the tomatoes, salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and simmer 15 min.

Add the cream and bring to a boil, reduce to low and add the pasta, toss and serve.


Saturday, March 06, 2010

Oatmeal Cake

This is an easy, super delicious cake.

Mix together:
1 1/2 cups very hot water
1 cup oatmeal (better if you DON'T use quick oats)
1/2 cup cooking oil
2 eggs

1 cup white sugar
1 cup brown sugar
1 1/3 cups flour
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt

Bake in greased & floured pan at 350 degrees for 30 minutes.

Stir over warm heat until melted & bubbly:
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup butter

2 Tbsp milk
1/2 cup chopped nuts (I prefer walnuts)
1/2 to 1 cup either coconut or small marshmallows (I like the coconut)

If using marshmallows, stir until melted and blended well.

Wednesday, February 03, 2010

One-pot Chicken and Brown Rice

Everyday Food Magazine, Jan/Feb 2010, p.112
Serves 4
Prep Time: 15 min
Total Time: 65 min

1 Tbsp olive oil
4 bone-in chicken thighs (6-8 oz each)
coarse salt and ground pepper
1 large yellow onion, cut into 8 wedges
2 celery stalks, cut into 1.5 inch pieces
2 medium carrots, cut into 1.5 inch pieces
1 bay leaf
1.75 cups water
1 cup brown rice

1. In a large Dutch oven or heavy pot, heat oil over medium-high. Season chicken with salt and pepper and place, skin side down, in pot. Cook until golden brown on both sides, 10 to 12 minutes total. Pour off all but 1 Tbsp fat from pot; add onion and celery. Reduce heat to low, cover, and cook 20 minutes.

2. Add carrots, bay leaf, and 1.75 cups water; stir in rice and season with salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Cover and cook until rice absorbs almost all the liquid, 40 to 45 minutes. Let stand, covered, for 10 minutes before serving.