My Mom’s Goulash

I was talking with my mom over the weekend.  I mentioned how I make hamburger and beans quite often. Kent and Eric enjoy it.  She was so surprised. She did tell me that she did not call it hamburger and beans.  She called it Goulash!  So I am updating this recipe per my phone conversation with my mom.  I am correcting the recipe name from Hamburger and Beans to:

My Mom’s Goulash

August 201 035

 

Ingredients

1 Tablespoon Vegetable Oil
1 red or green bell pepper, chopped or sliced very thin – that is up to you (she used green bell pepper)
1 medium onion, chopped or sliced very thin – that is up to you too!
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 pound ground beef
2-15 oz cans Bush’s Original Baked Beans (You can use whatever beans you like, kidney, cannellini, baked, whatever is in your cupboard.  My mom used Campbell’s Pork and Beans)
2 Tablespoons fresh basil (if you don’t have fresh basil you don’t have to add any.  I know my mom didn’t add basil. I love basil.)
Salt and Pepper (of course)

Directions

1.  Using a 12 inch skillet, add 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil, add peppers and onions, saute for 2-3 minutes, add garlic.  Stir together.
2.  Add the ground beef to the peppers and onions, cook until no longer pink.  Drain any excess fat.
3.  Open up those cans of beans and add to the hamburger/peppers/onions.  Stir together and simmer for 20-30 minutes.
4.  Add basil (or not) and stir together.  ALL DONE!

I never thought that anyone in my family would like this super quick meal.  Kent, myself and Eric really enjoy it.  It is super simple and very delicious.  Give it a try!  😉

Mom’s Meatloaf – Simple and Delicious

I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Special Sauce with Ed Levine.  The host was interviewing Frank Bruni.  He used to be a New York Times Food Critic. He was talking about a cookbook he co-wrote with Jennifer Steinhauer, “A Meatloaf in Every Oven”.  They were talking about their favorite meatloaf recipes. They spoke about their mom’s meatloaf recipe which got me thinking about my mom’s recipe.

When I spoke with my mom during the week I told her about this interview and mentioned her meatloaf.  I had a pretty good memory of what she put in her recipe.  It was fun talking about it and that got us into other recipes too.  She used to work second shift at Chrysler on the assembly line.  Prior to leaving for work she always made sure we had a good meal for dinner, every single night.  Meatloaf was easy for her to prepare before work. When I came home (or other siblings) we would put the dinner in the oven, set that table and have it ready for when Dad got home from work. We always had sat at the dinner table. I enjoyed the weekend when she wasn’t working so she was a part of our food and conversation.

I am sure everyone remembers their mom’s recipe or has one of their own they love. I am going to share her recipe.  If you would like to share your mom’s or your own recipe, please do.

Mom’s Meatloaf

img_5025

Ingredients

2 pounds ground beef (she mentioned that sometimes she did 1# ground beef, 1/2 pound ground pork, 1/2 pound ground veal)
1 small onion, diced fine
1 small green pepper, diced fine
1 clove garlic, minced
1/2 cup Italian Seasoned Bread Crumbs
2 eggs
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Directions

  1.  Preheat oven 375 degrees
  2. Mix all of the above together and form into loaf
  3. Place in loaf pan (or you can do free form.  My mom always used a loaf pan, so I did too)
  4. Place in oven and bake for 45-60 minutes

That’s it.  She also mentioned to serve with ketchup.  Oh, and it makes really good sandwiches if there is any left over.

By the way,  Frank Bruni’s was a Cheesy Chorizo Loaf.  He made it sound so good I bought the cookbook. img_5062 I guess we will be having some meatloaves in 2017.

Everyone loves meatloaf, right?

 

Potatoes and Okra -Dry Spice

Northern Indian side dish.

Okra and Potato Dry Spice
IMG_5047.JPG
Ingredients
1 1/2 Tablespoon vegetable oil
1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
3/4 pound okra, chopped into half inch pieces
3 medium russet potatoes, cut into half inch pieces
1-onion, diced small
4 cloves garlic, diced small
2 chili peppers, deseeded
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (Kashmiri Mirch)
1 teaspoon corriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon Chat Masala
pinch of brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon Garam Masala
Lime, peeled and cut into small chunks
Corriander/Cilantro for garnish
Directions
1.  Over medium heat add cumin seet, then potatoes.  When potatoes turn brown, remove from pan. (Since cut small they should be done.) Set aside.
2.  Wipe out pan with papertowel, add onion and brown.  Add garlic.  Mix until fragrant.
3.  Add okra and cook on medium low for 6 minutes.
4.   Add potatoes and powders, pinch of sugar, garam masala.  Mix together.
5.  Remove from heat, add cut up lime and garnish with cilantro.

Taro – Northern Indian Cuisine

Taro
IMG_5048.JPG
Ingredients
6 taro roots, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1 chili pepper, deseeded
1/2 teaspoon turmeric
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (Kashmiri Mirch)
1 teaspoon corriander
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
1/2 teaspoon Chat Masala
Corriander leaves/cilantro for garnish
Directions
1.  Wash and clean taro, do not peel yet.
Fill pot with water.  You will boil until done.  They are like a potato.  Check for doneness with knife.  When knife slides through easily they are done.
2. Remove from heat and run over with cold water, peel at this time. Cut into 1/4 inch slices.
3.  Using non stick skillet, add 1 Tablespoon vegetable oil over medium heat.
4.  Add taro slices.  When brown on both sides put in powders above. Mix well.
5.  Remove from heat. Garnish with corriander/cilantroEnjoy!

Basmati Rice

Basmati Rice
(6 servings)
IMG_5060.JPG
(Per recommendation, this recipe is using a rice cooker)
4 cups Basmati Rice
Water (fill to line on rice cooker)
3 Tablespoons butter (ghee preferable)
2 bay leaves
Cinnamon Stick (2 inch stick)
5 Cardomom pods (I used green)
5 cloves
10 black peppercorns
1 teaspoon cumin seed
1/2 to 1 teaspoon salt
1 cup green peas, frozen
Directions
1.  Rinse rice until the water runs clear
2.  Add Butter and spices to small fry pan, medium heat.  Stir for 1 minute and transfer to rice cooker insert.
3.  Add rice and water to rice cooker per rice cooker instructions.
4.  When the rice cooker is at the last few minutes (the rice cooker will let you know), add the peas to cook through the last few minutes.
5.  Rice will be done when rice cooker turns off.  Enjoy!

Chicken Curry – Northern India – Punjab

wWe are celebrating Northern India for February.  Saturday I visited the local Indian store to grab some ingredients.  The menu that I chose was red lentil soup, chicken curry and for dessert carrot halwa.  When I went up to the counter with a scant few ingredients, the owner asked me why I wanted the red lentils. I told her the menu I came up with. She said you don’t want lentil dal (not soup) and curry, they do not go together. I ended up spending 2 hours with her. She wrote out recipes explaining how to make chicken curry, okra/potato dry spice and taro.  I didn’t even get her name.  However, I know she was born in Punjab and grew up in Bombai.  She told me that in De Pere the Indian community is mainly from southern India.  The flavors in southern India are with more heat and coconut.  Northern India are with some heat and water/milk.  Then we went back to her writing out this menu to share with my family.  She said next time I come back she will write up Tandoori.  Also, I will get her name!  Thank you owner of Astha Grocery and Gifts, De Pere WI.  If you love Indian food give her a visit and make sure you have time to visit.

Chicken Curry
(serving for 6)

img_5051

 

Ingredients

3 Tablespoons vegetable oil
2 Tablespoons butter (ghee is preferred)
6 – chicken legs and thighs, bone in, cut at joint
2 red onions, diced fine
4 tomatoes, pureed in food processor or chopped very fine
1 head/knob of garlic (yes, that much garlic), diced fine
ginger root, 1 1/2 inch slice, diced fine
3 green chili, sliced, remove seed and diced small
1 bunch coriander leaves/cilantro, chopped
1 lime, juiced
1 small potato, diced, about 3/4 inch in size
1/2 teaspoon cumin seed
1/2 teaspoon turmeric powder for marinating chicken and 1/2 teaspoon for curry
1/2 teaspoon chili powder (Kashmiri Mirch)
1 teaspoon coriander powder
1/2 teaspoon cumin powder
2  teaspoons Chicken Masala powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon Garam Masala
pinch brown sugar
Juice of lime

Directions

  1. Marinate chicken with salt and turmeric. 30 minutes.
  2. Cut ginger root 1 1/2 inches, dice into small pieces
  3. Full head of garlic, dice into small pieces
  4. 2 red onions, diced into small pieces
  5. Green Chilies, slit from middle to end and take out the ALL of the seeds, dice into small pieces. (Next time, one or two more chilies)
  6. Tomatoes, you can cut into small pieces or put in food processor to puree.  It is recommended to use the food processor. Cut out top stem part. No need to deseed the tomato. Cut into quarters and put in processor, puree.
  7.  Bunch of cilantro, chop off ends.  Cut in 1/2.  Chop leaves and set aside.  Chop leaves/part stem and set aside.
  8. In large pot over medium heat quickly brown both sides of chicken.  You do not need to add oil at this time.  Take out chicken and set aside.
  9. In the same pot over medium to medium low heat, put 3 tablespoons of vegetable oil and 2 tablespoons of butter (ghee is preferred but for my first recipe she said butter was acceptable.  If I continue to make Indian dishes, ghee is a must purchase item).
  10. Add, cumin seed, ginger, garlic and green chili.
  11. When color changes, put in diced onion, wait until it turns brown.  Add salt.
  12. Saute until the onions are browned, about 30-40 minutes.
  13. Add chili powder, turmeric, cumin powder, coriander powder, tomato puree, chicken masala, wait for tomatoes to cook down stock by covering pot.  30 minutes. (Next time I will increase the spices.  Instead of 1/2 I will go to 1 teaspoon.)
  14. Add chicken, potato and 1/2 coriander/cilantro into pot.  Cook until chicken falls off bone.  45-60 minutes.
  15. If the gravy is dry, add 1/2-1 cup water to your liking.  The chicken releases liquid and you may not need to add any liquid at all.  (I did not need any liquid.)
  16. When done add salt to taste, pinch of brown sugar, garam masala, lime juice and cilantro for garnish.img_5060

We all enjoyed the Curry.  Next time I will play around with the dry spices.  I think they could have been kicked up a notch.  It was definitely simple and delicious.

 

 

Classic French Canadian Tourtiere

2017 will be a year of trying different recipes from countries around the world.  When I checked my son, Eric (who enjoys cooking also) which country and recipe we should start with his choice was Canada.  Reason – Poutine.   I started with Tourtiere.  This is a traditional meat pie typically served around Christmas.   I made this for our Saturday dinner.  Kent and I enjoyed it.

For our first Sunday in January, we had Poutine, Montreal Smoked Meat Sandwiches (used Pastrami that I picked up at Ski’s Meat Market) and Nanaimo Bars.  Each originated from Quebec except the Nanaimo Bars. They originated from Nanaimo, British Columbia.

End result for Canada;  Poutine was passable – go to Canada for great Poutine, this meat pie was delicious but it was a lot of meat (hence, meat pie), the sandwiches were enjoyed by Kent and Martin, the Nanaimo Bars – well I think we know how those went over.  🙂

Classic French Canadian Tourtiere
(Compliments from Kitchen Vignettes)

img_4983

Ingredients
1 pound ground pork
1 pound ground beef
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 Tablespoons olive oil
2 medium-large baked potatoes, mashed with skins removed (or about 1 cup mashed potatoes.)
3/4 cup beef broth (or water)
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon salt

Pie Crust
Use your favorite recipe or Pillsbury Pie Crusts (that is what I used!)

Egg Wash
1 egg
1 tablespoon water

Directions

  1.  In a large skillet add olive oil medium heat.  Add chopped onions and saute until soft and golden.
  2. Mix ground meats together in a bowl.  Add the ground meat to the onions and cook for about 10 minutes.  Stir to break up the meat.
  3. Add remaining ingredients and mix together.  Reduce heat to medium low and cover.  Simmer for 20-30 minutes, stirring occasionally, until most of liquid is absorbed.
  4. Remove from heat.  Taste the meat and add more salt, pepper or spices to your taste.  Refrigerate 2 hours, until completely chilled.
  5. Line a 9 inch pie place with pie dough.  (I prebaked the crust.  That is up to you.)
  6. Spoon in the meat mixture (all of it, this will fit in the pie plate). Patting down lightly to compress it.  Brush rim with water and place on top dough.  Trim and flute.
  7. Brush egg wash on top dough.  It is worth the time to do this.  The egg wash gives you a nice golden crust.
  8. Cut some steam vents on top of your pie.
  9. Place in oven.  Bake at 375 for 50-60 minutes or until the top of the crust is golden.

Kent and I enjoyed this dish.  It was great for leftovers too. Next – Pakistan.

Enjoy!!

 

Nanaimo Bars

I would like to make foods from other cultures each month for 2017. I thought the last Sunday of the month was a good day for this.  In January we chose Canada.  The dessert chosen was Nanaimo Bars.  This is a rich, layered bar.  Simple and Delicious.

Nanaimo Bars
(compliments King Arthur Flour)

img_4989

Crust
1/2 cup butter, melted
1/4 cup sugar
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 large egg
1 cup sweetened or unsweetened coconut (I had sweetened)
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (I used pecans)
1 teaspoon vanilla
2 cups graham cracker crumbs

Filling
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 cups confectioners sugar, sifted
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1/8 teaspoon coconut extract
2 Tablespoons instant vanilla pudding mix
2 Tablespoons milk

Icing
1 cup bittersweet chocolate (I used Ghirardelli bittersweet chocolate chips)
1/4 cup heavy cream or 2 Tablespoons butter (I used cream)

Directions
1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease 9×9 or 11×7 pan
2.  Make Crust; Place all of the crust ingredients in a mixing bowl.  Beat at medium speed until combined. (I hand mixed this entire recipe.)
3.  Press the mixture into a prepared pan. Bake for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and set aside to cool.
4.  Make Filling; Using a medium sized mixing bowl, combine softened butter, 1 cup of sugar and vanilla.  Beat until smooth.
5.  In a small bowl, combine the vanilla pudding and milk.  Mix together until thick and smooth.
6.  Add the pudding mix to the butter/sugar mixture.  Stir to combine.
7.  Add the remaining sugar, beat until the filling is smooth.  Spread over the cooled crust.  Cover and refrigerate until chilled.  (about 2 hours)
8.  Make icing; Combine chocolate and cream in a saucepan or microwave safe dish. Heat the cream until steaming.  Stir until smooth. (I use the microwave-30 second intervals)
9.  Spread the frosting onto the bars.  Refrigerate until set.

Enjoy!

 

 

 

 

 

 

delli