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Creamed Spinach alternative

1 box frozen chopped spinach
1 can coconut milk
2 cloves garlic
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 fresh chili (and chili is fine, depends on what u like)
2 tablespoons oil (again, whatever you prefer.
just nothing with a really strong flavor)
1/4 tsp salt (more or less depending on preference)


1.
thaw spinach
2.
sautee onion and salt in oil until light golden color and add chopped chili and garlic. cook for another minute to let garlic cook a little.
3.
add chopped spinach
4.
cook on medium for 5 to 10 min, until most of the water has evaporated.
5.
stir in 1 can coconut milk and cook for another 5 to 10 minutes.
6.
eat....

ive actually been eating this since i was a little kid. it one of my favirote things to eat. i usually eat it with rice. but the original recipe isnt for spinach. i used to cook it with taro leaves. but taro leaves are not so readily availible, but this alternative seems to satisfy my tastebuds. its good as dip to if you cook a little longer to let the coconut milk reduce down on low heat.

Pumpkin Bread

This is a recipe I came up with after combining about 3 other bread recipes. This is vegan and relatively low fat.

Makes 1 loaf (4×8 pan)

Molly’s Awesome Pumpkin Bread
1/2 c white sugar
3/4 c brown sugar
8 oz of pumpkin puree (half a can)
3/4 c unsweetened applesauce
1 2/3 c all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp baking powder
pinch or two of salt
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
(or 1 tsp nutmeg, 1/2 tsp ground cloves, 1/2 tsp ginger)
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 c mini-chocolate chips and/ or chopped walnuts

Mix wet ingredients
Add in dry, and mix well
Pour into a greased 8×4 loaf pan
Bake at 350 for 45-60 (time depends on your oven), or until toothpick comes out clean

Chicken and Peanut Stir-Fry

Chicken and Peanut Stir-Fry

The Chicken
1 lb skinless, boneless chicken breast, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
About 1/2 cup soy sauce (I usually eyeball it)
1/4 cup dry sherry
1 cup cornstarch
1/2 tsp toasted sesame oil
1 tsp freshly ground pepper
4 garlic cloves, crushed, peeled and coarsely chopped

The Pan
1 Tbsp peanut oil
1 large red bell pepper, cut into 1-inch pieces
About 1/2 of a white onion, sliced
About 1 cup of broccoli florets
1/2 cup cauliflower florets
1 inch fresh ginger root, grated
8 cloves of garlic, crushed, peeled, and chopped
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
1/4 cup low-sodium chicken broth
1/2 cup dry-roasted peanuts


The Chicken
Combine the chicken pieces, garlic, soy sauce, sherry, and sesame oil in a resealable plastic bag, push all the extra air out and twist until the contents are condensed at the bottom, seal and then put in refrigerator. Let marinade for at least 20 minutes (if not more...longer the better).

In a medium bowl, mix the cornstarch with the ground pepper, then toss with the chicken.

The Pan
Coat a large nonstick skillet with the peanut oil and heat over medium-high heat. Add the chicken mixture in an even layer, but don't touch it for about a minute. Then add the ginger and garlic, and stir it all up for 4 minutes, or until the chicken is browned. Stir in the broccoli and cauliflower, cook for another minute or so. Then add the CRUSHED red pepper, hoisin sauce and chicken broth. After this, add the bell peppers (bell peppers are always better a little undercooked for that extra bit of crunchiness, it adds a great texture to the dish as well as color) and the peanuts and stir-fry for an additional 2 minutes, or until the chicken pieces are cooked through.

You can also even be a bit daring and sub the peanuts for oven-toasted walnuts (or add them in along WITH the peanuts). I tried it once and it's pretty tasty. If there's a particular veggie you like, go ahead and add it in as well. I always figure the more veggies, the better (well...not olives...those aren't food, in my opinion). If you're a vegetarian, I'd imagine that the chicken can be replaced with tofu. I've personally never tried it, as tofu is an odd foreign substance the likes of which have never behaved well in my kitchen.

AND, if you're feeling especially saucy, when you plate it top it with CRUSHED peanuts. Or don't. It won't hurt my feelings. In fact, I probably won't even be there...

Cake for Gerta

I baked this cake as an experiment for a friend's B-day party and ended up making a new best friend of his elderly German neighbor. It's a traditional style bundt cake, so if you're expecting moist and squooshy, look elsewhere ;)

Read more...Collapse )

chestnuts!

So speak to me about chestnuts, folks. I absolutely adore roasted chestnuts, they're one of my favorite holiday treats. And yet I generally ruin them. Somehow they wind up burned or totally raw in the middle and so bitter, and the whole thing is generally quite frustrating. How hot do you roast your chestnuts? How do you know when they're done? Sure, the hull peels away where you've sliced it open, but often mine are still raw in the middle - that's not a sure sign of done-ness to me. Halp me get nom-worthy chestnuts!

Tapas

Ah, Tapas, the Spanish term for; "nom whilst having cocktail hour..."

Okay, it actually means the equivalent to small plates , but I like my story better...

So, we were having bacon-wrapped steak with minted carrots for supper. However, we wanted to have something to snack on before hand. I had a concept in mind, which involved shrimp. I have a many fine cookbooks, in context, I have a few for Spanish cooking, and more to point, one specifically devoted to tapas. What I came up with is excerpted from three to five different tapas recipes.




Since this is an Frankenstein-like extrapolation, there are not a lot of specific measurements, sorry...

Olive oil

Three scallions, chopped

Eight cloves of garlic-my minimum in just about anything I cook is four-chopped

Smoked hot Spanish paprika

White wine-I likes me my reds, so this involved a boxed white, used only for cooking

A dash of lemon juice

Shrimp-two dozen for two, but you get the idea. If you're in a hurry, used pre-cooked

Sausage-again, if in a hurry, use the plain breakfast quick brown kind

Parsley

***

Heat oil over medium heat, whilst in a separate pan, start browning the sausage. When the oil is hot, saute the garlic and scallions, waiting until the garlic is between golden and brown. At this point, the sausage should be browned.

Pour in the white wine, lemon juice, paprika, shrimp, and the sausage. It might look a little saucy, which is precisely the reason to kick the burner up to high to get things to really boil. Personally, this is where I take that long inhale, and enjoy the scent of what's being cooked.

Anyway, on high, saute, just until the sauce reduces. Serve straight from the pan, for it needs to be steaming. Everything else can wait. Throw parsley as a garnish, but also as a natural deodorizer, for those who cannot handle garlic.

Enjoy as a tapas or a light dinner. I'd recommend wine, of course. Something Spanish, if you can. But, I'll let you know French works just as well.

Oreo cookies made better

Take some regular old Oreo cookies (24 of them) and spread some peanut butter on each one....

Then some Marshmallow Creme over the Peanut Butter




Melt 1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips in saucepan over medium low heat, stirring often.  Add 4 Tablespoons heavy cream and mix until dark and shiny.




Take cookies from above and dip top part into the chocolate.
Let set up in refrigerator for about 30 minutes.




Have Pepto Bismol handy. 
Eat too many cookies; throw out handy cup that comes with Pepto bottle, and chase the cookies down by chugging out of said bottle. 


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Dinner Party Idea

I apologize in advance for not posting a recipe, but this is something I came up with that kind of fits the community and the upcoming holiday. I had an idea the other day while on the phone with a friend. We both have rather morbid curiosities, and were discussing a recent execution. This son of a bitch had brutally murdered two girls back in the mid 80's, never shown remorse, and at the last minute, filed a stay of execution, claiming the anaesthetic would not take effect in his Hutt like body (5'7" and 267 lbs.) Regardless of his complaints, he was executed last week. Anyway, we started pondering what his last meal could have been, and then I got (what I consider) a pretty good idea. Why not throw a death row potluck dinner party?

The rules are simple:
-> The meals must not be considered gourmet.
-> Most death row dishes are standard American fare.
-> Don't waste food, but each person should eat as much as humanly possible.
-> Some states (and federal courts) limit expenditures to $20. I'm sure you're not going to drop $20 a head, but work with some sort of frugal parameter. Other states limit meals to what can be made inside the prison, so perhaps use very simple ingredients (like what you already have in your kitchen, including canned goods).
-> No states allow alcohol, but some prisoners have been smuggled mini bottles of liquor and such. Keep the drinking very cheap (PBR) or very extravagant (fine wine), but as excessive as you want.
-> As a possible idea, find a favorite serial killer's last meal, or lacking that, the final culinary request of a hometown hero (villain?).

Upon writing this out, it doesn't sound like much, but knowing myself and my friends, we'd have a hell of a good time with it. Put on some gruesome movies, decorate, hell, just create an environment that you wouldn't mind having as the last one you ever experience.

Good websites:
http://serialkillercalendar.com/killerextrasLASTMEALS.html
http://www.deadmaneating.com/
http://www.thememoryhole.org/deaths/texas-final-meals.htm
http://ask.yahoo.com/20040322.html

Edit: Please post any additional ideas you can come up with. As noted, it's kind of a barebones concept, but I think there's plenty of room to build it up.

Apple Upside-Down Cake

Fall is here & everywhere I look I see apples!  I totally ripped this recipe off from Better Homes & Gardens and here
is their picture below.  I'm making it this weekend - I hope it looks as good and I'm hoping that the apples taste like Poached Apples (another recipe I need to add) 


  • 1/3  cup butter, cut up
  • 1/3  cup packed brown sugar
  • 6  very small red cooking apples (1-1/4 to 1-1/2 lb.), halved, stems removed, cored
  • 1-1/3  cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3  cup granulated sugar
  • 2  tsp. baking powder
  • 1  tsp. ground ginger
  • 1  tsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2/3  cup milk
  • 1/4  cup butter, softened
  • 1  egg
  • 1  tsp. vanilla
  •   Vanilla ice cream (optional)
Preheat oven to 350F. Place 1/3 cup butter in a 9x9x2-inch baking pan. Place in oven 5 minutes or until butter melts. Sprinkle brown sugar over butter; stir. Arrange 9 apple halves in mixture, cut sides down. Bake in oven 10 to 15 minutes or until bubbly.

Meanwhile, peel remaining apples. Coarsely shred; set aside. In bowl combine flour, granulated sugar, baking powder, ginger, and cinnamon. Add shredded apple, milk, 1/4 cup butter, egg, and vanilla. Beat with electric mixer on low until combined; beat on medium 1 minute. Spoon over apples, spread evenly (apple may be exposed; some butter may come to surface).

Bake 35 minutes or until wooden toothpick inserted near center comes out clean. Cool in pan on wire rack for 5 minutes. Loosen edges; invert onto platter. Spoon any topping in pan over top. Cool 20 minutes; serve with ice cream. Makes 9 servings.



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